Saturday, September 17, 2016
Home on the Range by Ruth Logan Herne
When I pick up a novel to read, it is with the hope that I will be swept away by the characters and can become one with their world. It is rare to find an author who can do that, let alone, do it consistently. Ruth Logan Herne is one of those authors that can consistently create a world of characters that pull you in and let you become one with the story. Her newest book, Home on the Range is the second book in her "Double S Ranch" series and it pulled me in from the very first page. The first book in the series, Back in the Saddle (read my review here), was without a doubt the best contemporary novel I read last year and Home on the Range is the best contemporary novel I have read this year.
Back Cover Blurb
CAN THE BROTHER LEFT BEHIND and A WOMAN WITHOUT HOPE WORK TOGETHER for THE GOOD of TWO PRECIOUS CHILDREN?
Nick Stafford stayed in central Washington, working his family's large ranch after his brothers left to pursue other passions--but his toughest job is being a single dad. As a child he watched his father fail at marriage and parenting, so Nick was determined to show him up. He'd be a better husband, father, and ranch manager than Sam Stafford ever was. Despite that commitment, three years after Nick's wife left him, he has a daughter in trouble at school and both of his girls are facing issues that force him to rethink his stubborn plans.
For Dr. Elsa Andreas, life fell apart when tragedy caused her to abandon her family therapy practice and retreat to the backwoods of Gray's Glen. Her school principal sister believes Elsa can guide the Stafford girls and that working with kids will draw Elsa out of her protective bubble.
Summer on the Double S teems with life and adventure. Amid the bounty of God and land, will Nick and Elsa find the courage to build futures based on faith rather than fear?
I loved this book. From start to finish the characters captivated me and pulled me into their story. Nick was a character I met in the first book of the series. I can honestly say I didn't get the warm fuzzier about him in the first book but as the author allowed him to reveal his issues and hurts in this book my heart melted and I grew to love him. Elsa, I liked right away, especially when she started working with the girls, Cheyenne and Dakota. She was sweet yet firm and allowed us to see deep into her hurts and issues as well. Now the girls were special. They had me wrapped around their little fingers right off and I didn't want to say goodbye to them.
Another thing I find rare in an author's work is when they can write in such a way that it engages all five senses in the reader. Ruth Logan Herne did just that in this book. There is a scene on pages 130 -133 that engaged all my senses. Elsa takes the girls into the forest to a small bog. On the way you will hear birds chirping and frogs croaking. You will smell the dampness and earthy smell of the forest. When we get to the bog, we will hear the sound of the Spring Peepers...tree frogs. The characters sit down and listen and it is amazing how I was so transported into this scene that I could feel, hear, see and smell everything that was occurring in that scene and I felt at peace, just as the characters did. This to me is a true gift of story telling and Ms. Logan Herne has truly been blessed with this gift.
I could go on and on about this wonderful book, but I don't believe in giving out spoilers. I will say that this book can be read as a stand-alone book but if you haven't read the first book in the series you might want to pick up a copy and read it first. I would highly recommend both books in this series. Home on the Range, releases on September 17, 2016.
I am looking forward to the third book in this series, Peace in the Valley, which is due to be out in March 2017. This will be Trey Stafford's story and I'm anxious to learn more about him.
On a 5-Star Scale = 5 HUGE Stars!!!!!
I would like to thank the author Ruth Logan Herne for my copy of Home on the Range. I received my copy for free in order to read it and give my honest review.
Smiles & Blessings,