Along the Rio Grande

Author: Tracie Peterson

Series: Love on the Santa Fe #1

Publisher: Bethany House

Release Date: March 1, 2022

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Great start to a new series set in the aridness of New Mexico!

Susanna Jenkins recently lost her husband to the Spanish Flu, but she has no need to worry about financial means.  Meanwhile, her father has made some bad investments that left he and her mother financially ruined and even lost the estate that they have lived in for many years.  When her uncle refuses to just bail them out and instead gives them an opportunity to learn from their mistakes as managers of a new hotel in New Mexico, Susanna decides to accompany them at the request of her uncle.  Unfortunately, her parents can’t grasp the concept that everything shouldn’t just be given to them and much of the hotel’s operations fall to her.  Will her parents and younger brother ever be able to understand the lesson they are trying to be taught?

Owen Turner is a boilermaker for the Santa Fe railroad.  You might say that the railroad is in his blood since his father was an engineer on the line until he died.  Owen tries to live his life right and walk with God, but he still has a lot of skeletons in the closet.  When he meets the new hotel managers, he is quickly drawn to Susanna, especially when he learns that she is now widowed.  When her brother comes to work at the railroad, he has a lot of trouble learning the craft and falls in with a group of friends that don’t help his behavior.  Can Owen open his hear to Susanna and help her brother at the same time?

Tracie Peterson writes such fun stories and for those of us who love steam trains as well, what could be better than a historical romance set amid the beginnings of the Santa Fe rail line?  I loved the setting (especially since I only live about 5 hours away) and the talk of local cuisine would always make me hungry.  Both Owen and Susanna were such lovable characters that you couldn’t help but hope that would end up together and not have a stumbling block.  Susanna’s parents, however, were nothing short of loathsome characters for most of the book.  With their attitudes throughout, I couldn’t believe that Susanna came from the same family.  But things have a way of working out in the end, especially when God is in charge.  I can’t wait to see what happens in the next installment.

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.

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