Title: Texas Mail Order Bride by Linda Broday
Bachelors of Battle Creek Series Book One
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Historical, Romance, Suspense
Length: 416 pages
Book Rating: C+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Rancher Cooper Thorne thinks his life is finally on an even keel-until Delta Dandridge steps off the stagecoach and claims she’s his mail order bride. Brash and quick-witted, the meddling Southern Belle is everything Cooper thought he never wanted…and everything his heart is telling him he needs.
But Cooper swore long ago that he’d never marry, and he aims to keep his word, especially now that the demons from his past have returned to threaten everything-and everyone-he holds dear…
Texas Mail Order Bride is the first installment in Linda Broday’s Bachelors of Battle Creek series. This historical western series centers around three close friends who have settled in Battle Creek, TX. The first novel is an action packed romance between the oldest of the trio, Cooper Thorne and mail order bride, Delta Dandrige.
Delta is fuming when her intended groom fails to meet her when she arrives in Battle Creek and things swiftly go downhill once Cooper explains he did not place the ad for a bride. Unfortunately returning home is not an option for Delta, so she quickly finds employment at the local mercantile. While Georgia happily settles into life in Battle Creek, Cooper finds himself embroiled in a battle to save his ranch from an unseen enemy.
Delta is more than capable of taking care of herself and she charms everyone she meets. She loves her new life but when she looks around, she sees that the neglected little town is in desperate need of a little TLC. Delta rallies the other women and her revitalization project soon takes off.
Cooper is an orphan whose only close ties are with his blood brothers, Rand Sinclair and Brett Liberty. Cooper has a compelling reason to avoid marriage, but he does not count on his unexpected attraction to Delta. With his past haunting him, Cooper has no intention of getting involved with Delta, but he finds it difficult to keep his distance from her.
While Delta and Cooper are very likable characters, their romance gets lost in the numerous subplots. The change in their relationship from antagonistic to romantic is abrupt and in the midst of all of the turmoil, they manage to explore their mutual attraction. Although well-written, the novel is overwhelmed with various story arcs and the plot is rather predictable.
Despite a few issues, Texas Mail Order Bride is a fast-paced and entertaining beginning to the Bachelors of Battle Creek series. Linda Broday’s glimpses of Rand and Brett are quite intriguing and I am very much looking forward reading their stories.