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★★★★★

“Defiant Heart ”

Written on: 23/05/2007 by Harriet Klausner (18637 reviews written)

Defiant Heart

Tracy Bateman

Avon, May 2007, $12.95

ISBN: 0061246336



In 1847 their stepfather sold Fannie Caldwell and her preadolescent siblings Katie and Kip to Tom as indentured servants. Over the next three years raging drunken Tom treats them horribly, although Fannie as a lioness protecting her cubs absorbs most of his wrath. However, she is concerned for twelve year old Katie's safety and vows they will escape.



Fannie befriends Toni the town's fallen woman. They agree to flee together with the former's siblings at the first opportunity. When wagon master Blake Tanner arrives in town, the two females book passage on his trip west although he objects to single women with no man to protect them. As Fannie and Blake, and Toni with the wagon master's best friend Two Feathers fall in love, danger seems everywhere besides the normal perilous journey as someone wants either one or both women dead although no reason seems apparent except perhaps Tom seeking revenge for the Caldwells running away.



The first Westward Hearts tale is a wonderful western romance starring fully developed characters bringing to life the decade before the Civil War on the Great Plains. The story line is driven by the cast who face all sorts of peril as they seek a new hopefully better life. Readers will admire the intrepid Fannie who is fierce when it comes to keeping Katie and Kip safe, but also loving and vulnerable. Toni will receive much empathy from the audience for her trials and tribulations. Tracy Bateman shows why she is an award winning author with this suburb Americana romance.



Harriet Klausner

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