Summer Chaparral (Las Morenas Book One)


WESTERN:  Catarina is a self-proclaimed narcissist in an American family with deep Mexican roots. Ranching, surviving off the land and etiquette bind her future. She longs for a suitor, but all are chased away by her domineering parents. On a summer morning, her love affair begins at a watering trough when a handsome cowboy named Jace rides into town and desire draws swords with the skeletons in her family’s closet.

Romeo and Juliet meet the old west; “Summer Chaparral” is a meandering tale until family history throws a monkey wrench into the cattle herd. Slow to start but with a strong finish this novel creates an image of the frontier which molded the United States. Bigotry and grudges are woven into the threads of the tale. Blood is thicker than water until Catarina matures into the woman she’s meant to be. Jace is an evolving hero but reads with a few too many feminine qualities for a man who was raised in the bunk houses of southern California. His compassion and empathy are borne from his need to have a home of his own. A strong writing style saves the story when it spins too long in one spot before moving on to the next plot point. The large cast of characters is individually unique and a satisfying disbursement of story time is doled out to keep a reader turning pages.

“Summer Chaparral” lays out a beautiful setting in a country finding its legs and the merging blood lines that made it distinctive and enduring.

Sloane Austin