When she manages to get herself hired for the cattle drive, all of Samantha’s prayers seem to be answered. The hundred dollars she’ll earn will pull her family’s Texas farm out of ruin and pay off their debts. But keeping the cowhands fooled that she’s a boy becomes harder than she’d expected where one cowboy in particular is concerned.
Matthew Hart wants two things: to forget the tragedies he witnessed on the front lines of the War Between the States, and to reclaim his cowboy life. The last thing he wants is the responsibility of a tagalong youngster on the cattle drive. His closed mind and hardened heart are territory best left unexplored, until a fateful moment turns his world upside down.
Matt discovers what and who “Sam” really is, and he is furious. But soon a stronger emotion takes hold, and bound by Samantha’s secret, Matt is torn between revealing her identity and his own sudden and frightening love for her.
After seeing an advertisement for a cattle drive that will pay 100 bucks upon completion, Samantha thinks its just the opportunity to pay off her family’s debt at the local store, and ease some of her mother’s burdens. But when her brother Ben, who lost an arm in the war, refuses to go, she chops her hair, dons her younger brother’s clothes, and becomes Sam the greenhand, and sets out to help her family. She is paired with Matt, who has been charged with helping her become a productive hand. But the more time she spends with Matt, the more attracted she is to him. However, Samantha must be careful if she doesn’t want anyone to find out that she is really a girl.
This was such a sweet little story, and Samantha is such a great character. She’s very concerned about her family and their finances and resolves to do something about it. She worries so much about her Mother and cares deeply for the wants and needs of her siblings. Her main motivation is just to help her family out the best way she can. Samantha is a quick learner, and not afraid of hard and exhausting work. She is diligent in her duties and has a special way of getting the most hardened person to open up.
I like the relationship she develops with Matt. Even before he discovers her secret, there was something about Sam that compelled Matt to look after her and be protective towards her. His fear of falling for her was endearing because it meant so much more than the usual teenage love story. With walls built up because of his experience in the war, Matt doesn’t want to feel deeply for anyone again lest something happen to them.
Overall this was a lovely little story about family, friendship, and first love. I’d recommend this one especially for young girls looking to read a sweet romance.
Filed in: Reviews, Romance, Young Adult Tags: Lorraine Heath, Review, Romance, Young Adult