Book Review: Summer of Promise

Summer of Promise
Westward Winds Book 1
Amanda Cabot
Publisher Description:
Though she had planned to spend the summer in Vermont, Abigail
Harding cannot dismiss her concerns over her older sister. Charlotte’s
letters have been uncharacteristically melancholy, and her claims that
nothing is wrong ring false, so Abigail heads west to Fort Laramie,
Wyoming. When her stagecoach is attacked, Wyoming promises to be
anything but boring. Luckily, the heroics of another passenger,
Lieutenant Ethan Bowles, save the day.
Abigail plans to marry when she returns to Vermont, just as soon as
she attends to her sister. As the summer passes, she finds herself
drawn to this rugged land and to a certain soldier determined to
persuade her to stay. When summer ends, will she go back East, or  will she find her heart’s true home?
My review:
I really thought this book was going to be a good one for me. It started out with some nice action with the stagecoach incident. But then there was a lot of time spent on the new puppy Puddles. And I just lost interest, and fast. Puddles is not who, or what, I wanted to focus on. Charlotte and Abigail seemed a little immature, especially Charlotte. Yet, Abigail is full of spirit and life, so she was well suited for Ethan.
There were also a lot of characters with more smaller parts in the story.  But some of the characters got under my skin, like Peg at the “hog ranch”.  And little greedy gambling Jeffery. I guess that makes for good writing when you have such feelings towards characters.
I also felt it a bit too modern for its time on occasion. Mentioning army families moving a lot seemed more modern. But it wasn’t something too distracting. It just popped into my head “would they really say that back then”. 
I did like Ethan. His story line was good and I felt his character was deep. I liked hearing about his Grandfather, it gave Ethan more depth.
The story was also filled with action and intrigue. Robberies and finding out who was behind them. And meeting some interesting people along the way, and some boring. And something shocking, like who was actually behind the robberies and how greed can make you do crazy things. 
I found it a bit interesting in one spot where Puddles had been poisoned and Ethan was praying, and learning about God’s answered prayers. Ethan was telling Abigail about it and that he was a “doubting Thomas”, and my husband was just teaching the girls about “doubting Thomas” the night before I read this part of the story. So I guess you can have teachable moments from the book. Some times I do get inspired by books to teach something to my children, so I could use this chapter (20) as an example. 
Over all its a pretty good book. I did struggle through some of it, especially Puddle’s parts. But the story between Abigail and Ethan is really good. So if you like the pioneer times, then give this one a try. It is the first in a series so be sure to collect them all as they come out. 

“Available January 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.” has the book listed to ship 01/29/2012 click the book cover above to be taken to its page.

~~I received this book for free, for an honest review~~

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