Rose Cavanaugh does a great job in creating a great historical romance novel, it does everything that I was looking for. It felt like it was suppose to in a Western story and I was invested in what was going on. I’m glad I read this and would like to read more from the author.
Isla Chisholm finds strength in solitude. A rare type of woman, raised by her father on the trails of Texas, Isla keeps an unburdened life in the plains until one fateful day when her conniving brother decides to use her life as a bargaining chip for his wealth in the big city.
Enter William Caldwell, once the most eligible bachelor in Kansas City and still the richest. He is immediately enamored by her unbridled spirit and callous disregard for the city’s rapidly evolving feminine limitations. Will a marital business arrangement between the two be the thing to truly set her free?
Be Warned: f/f interaction, BDSM elements
Isla took in her reflection for the first time since her brother had ushered her out of the house earlier that evening. Her hair looked silken like Marie’s had as it cascaded down the couch that night just a week ago. She raised her gloved fingertips to a few curls that had fallen onto her bare shoulders. She felt her heart sink when she met her own eyes in the mirror, she saw a deep sadness in them. For the first time, she could see the woman her mother had envisioned for her. Her memories flooded with the image of her mother brushing her long hair as a child in the mirror of her vanity and her heart ached with longing. She’d never felt comfortable appearing feminine, and perhaps it was this deep sense of loss that she’d been avoiding. Whom was she trying to fool?
She suddenly felt mortified, as if the truth of who she was had made its way through the entire room and she was standing naked for them all to gawk at. She began to rip the satin gloves from her hands. She had to get out of there. She looked in both directions of the long hallway, one led back out to the grand room and the other seemed to turn a corner. Perhaps she could find an exit that way.
She started down the hall, stepping lightly, though she knew nobody would be looking for her. She had just turned the corner when suddenly she felt a presence behind her. She inhaled sharply and picked up her speed while trying to demonstrate a sense of authority. The steps grew quicker behind her as well, faster than hers. She had made up her mind to confront them when she felt a hand grab at her wrist, and she was jerked to a halt. Her body was up against the wall and the foreign hand now had her wrist tightly pinned at her side. She did not scream but her eyes had shut involuntarily with the abrupt motion. Her chest heaved deeply as she was accosted by the familiar pungency of her brother’s villainous accomplice. Her eyes shot open.
“I know. You hate to be followed,” William said with an air of pure amusement. He dropped her hand.
“You seem to be making a habit of it,” she retorted. She grabbed at her wrist and massaged where he had just let go. He was still close enough to her that she could feel his breath and she looked into his eyes. They were a deep gray that seemed to churn like dark clouds just before a storm. He held her gaze and for a minute she lost track of the floor beneath her.
“Leaving so soon, Miss Chisholm?” He took a step back and she felt the wall give underneath her slightly.
“Just looking for some air.”
“Ah…” His eyes traveled the length of her body and she shifted slightly. “I suppose you’re not used to this level of suffocation given what you normally wear.”
She grunted and turned to walk away but he stepped in front of her quickly.
“Isla,” his tone was gentler now, “may we speak somewhere … privately?”
She looked up at him in shock. Why was he addressing her so casually? This man had been nothing but a nuisance since she arrived here. She took in the empty hallway surrounding them. “We are alone.”
“Ah, yes.” He stepped forward again, trapping her against the wall once more. Her hands pressed on the coolness of the plaster and she lifted her chin in defiance. He placed his hand on the wall above her shoulder and leaned in playfully. “I believe I might have a proposition that would benefit both of us.”
“Oh?” She could see the storm blackening in his eyes.
“Marry me,” he said as nonchalantly as if he had just offered her a cup of coffee. She began to laugh heartily and ducked under his arm to free herself of this situation. She would rather be back in that room than be his plaything any longer.
“I should find my brother.”
“Isla, I’m serious. Marry me.”
She stopped in the middle of the hallway, her back still to him.
“I know that I am older than you and not as spry perhaps as some of those men out there, but I can guarantee you I am much better company than those fools. Plus, I have more money than all of them combined.”
She turned to him again. He was serious. “Why?” Her mind couldn’t comprehend what sort of game he was playing anymore. Did he covet her ranch that badly? If so, he could just purchase it. She pressed, “What’s in it for you?”
He leaned against the wall again and took a cigar out of his coat pocket. The exquisite tailoring of his suit accentuated his lengthy stature and she concluded that he was more attractive than any man in that room. Objectively speaking, of course. The men that had stammered over each other for her consideration had boyish faces and seemed deprived of intimacy. This man was worldly and unyielding, which intrigued her immensely. She stepped forward curiously.
“What would marrying me bring you?”
“Your pitiful brother has been avoiding the courtship of my company for some time now and I believe in marrying you I could easily close the deal. He’s been hesitant to accept my offer because he seems to believe he’s a strong enough businessman to court my competitors in Chicago. A laughable notion, of course, but I have grown tiresome of his stalling tactics. Before you burst in yesterday, I was prepared to call it quits entirely. You seem to have reignited my competitive spirit, Isla.” The corners of his mouth twisted up coyly at her.
She studied him again. They could both agree on one thing at least—her brother was pitiful. She moved closer to him again and pressed on seductively, “And what would it bring me, Mr. Caldwell?”
I thought William and Isla had an entertaining and interesting read. This was a new author, for me. And am voluntarily leaving my review.
Isla Chisholm likes to be alone, but her nasty brother has other ideas, then William Caldwell comes into her life. I enjoyed reading their story and seeing these two strong willed people get a happy ending. I received a copy of this book via Evernight and am voluntarily leaving a review.
This is the story of Isla and William. It is a historical romance set in the late 1800s. The story is a fairly short read that is interesting. Isla enjoys the solitude on the farm she shares with her brother. Only her brother has different plans for her. William is fascinated and intrigued with Isla. She unlike any women he has known and is willing to strike an agreement with her. This is a good story but I did not some discrepancies in the story. Since this was an advanced copy those may have been fixed with the final copy.
Set in the 1800's, Texas, Isla was used to having her freedom until her brother uses her to build up his wealth. William saw Isla and immediately was smitten by wild spirit and sort to negotiate a business arrangement between the two of them. Strong and almost emotionless, Isla falls for William but is it too late to open her heart and let William know how she feels? A good read.
I really enjoyed this book it is very well written enjoyable characters very good storyline I really enjoyed this book
Isla likes being alone. Her brother has otheer plans for her and she wont like them. Enter William who is inrigued by her. While they agree to a marital contract to free them both could love be involved for them to get the love they deserve.
I didn't know what to expect in this book but expectations were so highly exceeded. I loved how this was written in what was period correct and how the woman was a strong independent woman who knew she could take care of herself BUT that also was able to depend on a man who turned into the true love she deserved.
Characters are fully fleshed out, a few twists I didn’t see coming. A discomfiting scene or two, some TW for sexual violence might be good. This was an easy and fast read I couldn’t put down. I demand a sequel!