HISTORICAL:  Maria Holloway is excited to start a new life on the western frontier with her husband, but everything changes in a heartbeat when her wagon train is attacked, her husband killed, and she is abducted. Forced to spend three years living with the Lakota people, she finds solace in her new life and even begins to form relationships. When she finally has a chance for rescue, can she go back to her old ways?

This story is easy to read and the characters, especially those in the Lakota camp, were beautifully drawn. There are intriguing twists to the story as well, but after a page-turning beginning and middle, the ending feels tacked on and rushed. It is difficult to understand the motivations of the heroine at times, and she seems unable to make reasonable decisions after suffering the emotional trauma of witnessing her husband’s murder. She floats from situation to situation, and often becomes repetitive in her thought processes. That makes her hard to relate to and slows down the pacing considerably. That said the hero of the book, a Lakota named Bodaway, has an intensity to him that makes him three-dimensional and memorable, definitely more than a typical stereotype. The romantic moments are meaningful and readers will root for their happily ever after. The Lakota village makes up a wonderful secondary cast, with several scene-stealers that won’t be easily forgotten. The author has definitely created a setting that readers will want to visit again and again.

 Kate Campbell