I've always had a fascination with the Old West. I grew up watching Bonanza, The Rifleman, and Gunsmoke - I mean Hello - can we say sexy men in boots, cowboy hats, and riding horses??? Kathleen Rice Adams captures the imagery and love for that time period in her book Prodigal Gun. Focusing on a time after the Civil War, in Texas, a state that was flooded with carpetbaggers, immigrants, and outlaws, she is able to paint a picture so clear you can see and feel the struggles.
Prodigal Gun tells the story of Mason Caine, a man who as a teen left the girl he loved, to fight in a war that would kill him in more ways than one. Jessie Caine loved Mason, but when he left for war and was declared dead, she married his brother. Mason, after learning of their marriage and feeling betrayed, creates a new persona - gunman Calhoun. When a range war involving a new type of fencing occurs and Calhoun is asked to help an old friend, he comes face to face with the fiery woman, now a widow, who thought he was dead.
Kathleen Rice Adams knows her history, but more than that, she knows how to translate that history into a beautifully flawless story. This is not just a love story, but a story about redemption. I give this book 5-stars and I am looking now at reading another from her.
At least not yet.
Embittered by a brother’s betrayal, notorious gunman Calhoun is a dangerous man, come home to do an unsavory job. A bushwhacker’s bullet nearly takes his life on Jessie’s land, trapping him in a standoff between the past he tried to bury and the infamy he never will. One taste of the only woman he ever loved puts more than his life and her ranch in the crossfire.
With a price on his head, a debt to a wealthy employer around his neck, and a defiant woman tugging at his heart, Calhoun’s guns may not be enough to keep him from the grave. Caught between his enemies and hers, Jessie faces an agonizing choice: Which of her dreams will die?