Title: The Long Trail Home by Vickie McDonough
Texas Trail Series
Publisher: Moody Publishing Inc
Genre: Historical, Inspirational, Romance
Length: 272 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
The Long Trail Home is third in a six-book series about four generations of the Morgan family living, fighting, and thriving amidst a turbulent Texas history spanning from 1845 to 1896. Although a series, each book can be read singularly.
When Riley Morgan returns home after fighting in the War Between the States, he is excited to see his parents and fiancée again. But he soon learns that his parents are dead and the woman he loved is married. He takes a job at the Wilcox School for the blind just to get by. He keeps his heart closed off but a pretty blind woman, Annie, threatens to steal it. When a greedy man tries to close the school, Riley and Annie band together to fight him and fall in love.
But when Riley learns the truth about Annie, he packs and prepares to leave the school that has become his home and the woman who has melted his heart. Will he change his mind and find the love he craves? Or will stubbornness deprive him from the woman he needs?
Through painful circumstances, Riley and Annie learn that the loving and sovereign hand of God cannot be thwarted.
The Long Trail Home by Vickie McDonough is a delightful addition to the Texas Trail series. With the Civil War at an end, Riley Morgan returns to Waco, TX. Stunned by the death of his parents and heartbroken over his fiancée’s marriage to another man, he cannot bring himself to live on the ranch. Instead, he works as a handyman at the Wilcox School for the Blind in exchange for room and board where he befriends owner Laura Wilcox and her assistant Annie Sheffield.
Riley is kind and caring man whose life has dealt him many harsh blows. Struggling to put the horrors of war behind him, he quickly settles into a routine at the blind school. He enjoys an easy rapport with Annie, and to his surprise, he finds his feelings for her are deeper than friendship. With the loss of so many of his loved ones, he has lost his faith in God and he closely guards his wounded heart.
Abandoned by her father, Annie Sheffield calls the Wilcox School for the Blind home. She aids Laura in the day to day operations of the school and she cares deeply for the children attending the school. Her feelings for Riley are rapidly evolving from caring to love, but she fears his reaction when she reveals the deep secret she has been harboring.
Laura Wilcox’s need to open her school for the blind came at high cost, but one she has never regretted. With the possibility of losing her school looming, she begins to re-evaluate some of her previous decisions. Like Riley, she too has misplaced her faith in God.
A compelling sermon by a traveling preacher at a revival serves as a catalyst in all the key characters’ lives. Reverend James’s powerful sermon resonates deeply with Riley, Annie, and Laura, and they are finally able to make peace with their respective pasts.
The Long Trail Homeis a complex, multi layered novel. A charming cast of characters and various subplots quickly engage the reader. An underlying message of faith provides The Long Trail Home with added dimension and interest. Vickie McDonough’s epilogue is touching and perfectly wraps up this heartwarming romance.
This review is also posted at The Reader’s Roundtable