The Husband Tree, Montana Marriage #2, Mary Connealy
Standing over her third no account husband's grave, Belle Tanner makes a vow, no more men. Now all she needs to do is get her cattle to market before winter sets in. But there's no one around except the drifter Silas Harden, and Belle is such a poor judge of men that she can't decide if he is worth hiring on. And she can't leave her four daughters at home.
Silas just escaped a shotgun wedding, only to lose his money, his ranch and his pride. Although he's determined never to get tangled up with women folk again, Belle and her daughters seem to bring out the protector in him. And he does find Belle appealing.
When a group of cowpokes, along with a white woman raised by the Shoshone, show up along the drive, Belle has her hands full. Can she protect her oldest daughter and Glowing Sun, keep her own vows, no more Husbands!
Will anyone get through this treacherous cattle drive unscathed and unhitched?
An imaginative little tale, great way to spend a lazy afternoon or evening.
Sea Escape, a novel, Lynne Griffin
Laura Martinez is wedged in the middle place, grappling with her busy life as a nurse, wife, and devoted mom to her two young children when her estranged mother, Helen, suffers a devastating stroke. In a desperate attempt to lure her mother into choosing life, Laura goes to Sea Escape, the pristine beach home that Helen took refuge in after the death of her beloved husband, Joseph. There, Laura hunts for the legendary love letters her father wrote to her mother when he served as a reporter for the Associated Press during wartime Vietman.
Believing the beauty and sway of her father's words will have the power to heal, Laura reads the letters bedside to her mother, a woman who once spoke the language of Fabric, of Peony Sky and Jade and Paradise Garden Sage, but who can't or won't speak to her now. As Laura delves deeper into her tangled family history, she becomes increasingly determined to save her mother. As each letter reveals a patchwork detail of her parent's marriage, she discovers a common thread, a secret that mother and daughter unknowingly share.
Weaving back and forth from Laura's story to her mother's, beginning in the idyllic 1950s with Helen's love affair with Joseph through the tumultuous Vietman War to the present, Sea Escape takes a gratifying look at what women face in their everyday lives, the balancing act of raising capable and happy children and being accomplished and steadfast wives while still being gracious and good daughters. It is a story that opens the door to family secrets so gripping, you won't be able to put this book down until each is revealed.
Surviving on the Texas Frontier, Personal Recollections of Life in Nineteenth Century Texas, Sarah Harkey Hall, Introduction by Paula Mitchell Marks
Few accounts of life in nineteenth century Texas provide either the vivid personal detail or the poignancy of these recollections set down by Sarah Harkey Hall in 1905. Her narrative, written by age forty-eight for her children, captured the rhythms of daily and seasonal life in frontier San Saba County and chronicles her struggle for physical and emotional survival, as well as the struggles of her family and community. Unlike many pioneer memoirs, written or later generations, Sarah's does not assume a nostalgic or triumphant tone and does not glide over the daily hardships of life in a new country.
The result is a remarkable record of frontier endurance, a record more bitter than sweet Sarah's parents settled in 1853-1854 on Richland Creek in Central Texas, within the then vast boundaries of Bexar County. They were among the first immigrants in the region, locating "one mile east of Richland Springs among the recently vacated wigwams of the Comanche Indians." Sarah's manuscript was transcribed by her great-grand daughter, Maridell Henry of Kingsland.
From the Texas Bookshelves.
See you at Rylander!