Owen (The Chapmans Book 1)


After calling off her wedding to the cheating Arlo Lloyd, Ellie Beth Brook corresponds with a man who puts an ad in the paper wanting a mail order bride. His name is Frank Hartman, and they write for a year. Frank finally sends for Ellie, and she sets off from Atlanta, Georgia for Nebraska. No one to meets her stage coach, but she does meet a handsome man who is headed for the marshal. Arriving at the Frank’s ranch, the Hartman family wants nothing to do with Ellie. Owen Chapman, the man Ellie met in town, is there with the marshal who is telling the family Frank is dead. Owen offers to take Ellie to his family ranch where his family takes the frightened Ellie under their wing. Owen cannot get the beautiful young woman out of his head, but he is determined to send her back to Georgia on the next stagecoach. 

“Owen” is the first book in a family saga series. Ms. Sterling skillfully crafts a story with many characters and is able to give them individual voices and personalities. The world building is wonderful, from the rolling hills and valleys of the ranch to the peculiar Chapman ranch house. The characters have little depth to them and are two-dimensional. There is a feud going between the Chapman and Hartman families, but nothing is said about the reason until the last pages of the story. The story itself is the clichéd typical mail order bride story where things go amiss. An interesting story with a multitude of internal struggles for the main characters makes this an enjoyable read. 

Belinda Wilson