4 out of 5 stars
A SWEET MISFORTUNE, the second installment in the Virtues and Vices of the Old West series, may have been predictable, but was still a joy to read.
Rachel Matthews is doing what she can to make it through life. While waiting for her brother to strike it rich in California, Rachel has no choice but to work as a dance hall girl. She knows, once he returns, they will buy back their family ranch and make a life for themselves in Montana. But, when John McIntyre all but kidnaps her, Rachel’s direction in life takes an about face. Fiercely independent, Rachel is angry with John for interfering, but soon admits to herself she is far better off working for his grandmother. When Rachel feels a spark of interest for John, she quells her heart. John is a respectable man, she is merely a saloon girl. They are worlds apart and that’s where they’ll stay.
Wealthy ranch owner, John McIntyre, has only two interests in life—acquiring land and cattle. But, when his friend, Preston Matthews, asks him to rescue his sister from the life as a dance hall girl, John obliges. Thinking he’s doing Rachel a favor, John is shocked when she is anything but grateful. But, being a man of his word, he’s determined to keep Rachel under his roof and in his care until her brother returns to Montana. John soon finds himself infatuated with Rachel. She’s a hard worker, compassionate towards others, and doesn’t take things for granted. But, knowing the life she’s led in the dance hall, John isn’t sure he can overlook her past.
I really enjoyed A SWEET MISFORTUNE. I was under the gun to get this book read, in order to fulfill a commitment, but had no problem finishing it in a day. The pacing was good, the characters likeable, and there was enough action throughout the book to keep the story going. Rachel is a real firecracker (love that in a heroine), and John is all business, but with a tender heart (can you hear the swoon?). The interaction between these two was lively and entertaining. Secondary characters like Estelle, Molly, Annabelle, and even the snarky Beatrice, definitely added dimension to the story. I felt A SWEET MISFORTUNE had better pacing than THE TROUBLE WITH PATIENCE. It flowed well and had more substance.
Book provided for review purposes.
Available February 2016 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.