Close Enough to Touch

Close Enough to TouchGrace Barrett is down on her luck and is now in Wyoming, a complete change from LA. Grace will not take any crap or charity from people but her boundaries will be tested when she meets her neighbor Cole.

Cole Rawlins is healing from an injury only several months from ago. He will be staying at an apartment but when a new neighbor shows up Cole starts getting interested. Problems are in the making especially when Cole’s past and Grace’s past collide making old injuries hard to ignore.

Victoria Dahl is an author that can get your heart pounding with her characters and not just in that passionate way. You feel for the characters as she makes them real and with many depths making a well rounded character. Close Enough to Touch is one of her several novels she has written and its one that I couldn’t stop reading. You get to know Grace and Cole very well and know without a doubt these are two very damaged people. Both have boundaries that guard their emotions and wouldn’t let others in. Grace is more effective with it as she has learned many times to keep distant. Throughout the book I grasped it hoping that these two would have a chance to be together. I wanted them to find happiness with each other which is why when Cole’s old flame strolls into town I wanted to throw the book. Of course I kept reading. Dahl keeps true to her characters when she keeps them away from each other, well there is tons of passion when they are together but that’s not the future we all hope full for them. She does change the characters but in a subtle way as no one changes over night.

At the end we are left with a heartwarming ending that makes you smile as it leaves the characters in a good place. Now I checked out when she would have another book published and it looks like two characters from this book will have their own, Merry and Shane. Within this book they were more on the side so it will be interesting to read how they are to interact.

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A Bride for a Bit

“A Bride for a Bit” is a collaboration of four authors who each write a story on one of the sisters, Matty, Corrie, Bess, and Bertie and their adventure in Lickwind, Wyoming in the 1800’s.

“Misreading an order fro bridles, a New England farmer sends his four sister-in-laws as mail order brides to Lickwind, Wyoming.  When four women step off the train, astonishment turns to mayhem as the men of the town suddenly spruce up and make time for courting.”

The first story is “From Halter to Alter” by Cathy Marie Hake.  The sister get off the train in hopes of finding their own place in this world, happy to get away from Ellis.  Jim Collingswood came that day expecting to pick up bridles winds up with four sisters waiting to be brides.  Matty is the oldest and takes it upon herself to find something that they can do.  Not long do the men come asking and even though Jim denies it and fights his feelings he winds up kicking the suitors away from the girls.  And at that point Jim wants to be with Matty and she loves Jim.  Finally Jim will get the courage to ask Matty.

The second story is “From Carriage to Marriage” by Jannelle Burnham Schneider.  This continues with the sisters.  Matty and Jim are happily married but now it is Luke’s turn, Jim’s younger brother.  Luke since meeting the girls has been protective but more so for the mother to be Corrie.  He wants to court her but she is mourning her husband.  Luke does everything he can to help Corrie.  Corrie on the other hand wants to find some dependence.  Starts to bake and sell her products.  With a few bumps in the road with the soon to be babies Corrie decides that the mourning is through and Luke will have a chance.

Third story is “Pride to Bride” by JoAnn Grote.  Bess is the bossey one of the family but she does so to protect her sisters.  To find her place in this town she decides to start teaching and cooking.  Through this story Gideon is the saloon owner and wants to court Bess but he thinks he is not good enough.  Bess is a respectful woman and he tries to protect her reputation with whom she is teaching too but it is no use since Bess is determined to help anyone, even Gideon himself.

The last story is “From Alarming to Charming” by Pamela Kaye Tracy.  A boy when Thomas Hardin left the town now comes back to it six years later only to find a few things change, like the Craig sisters.  Trying to find himself in this town he gets mangled with the youngest sister who was very much a tomboy.  Bertie sees the new comer and wants to change what she looks like.  She wants to catch the attention of Thomas Hardin but she also wants to change into the woman she is becoming.

This was a great set of stories about the Craig sisters.  It was fun to read, cute, and had some romance intertwined.  I loved how they were shipped out but made something of themselves while changing the town forever.  I really loved the last chapter in the book as we saw four years later and how all of their families grew.