Saturday, May 28, 2011

Finally a Bride by Vickie McDonough

by Anita Mae Draper

Finally a Bride (Book 3 Texas Boardinghouse Brides) by Vickie McDonough

"He made her want to be a woman for the first time in her life."

Jack’s story in Finally a Bride was worth the wait. It's the tale of grown up Jacqueline (Jack) Davis who now wears dresses and looks like a lady, but still acts like the 10 yr old tomboy we met in the first book of this series. Consider the opening… Jack is after a story and climbs on the mayor’s roof to eavesdrop on his conversation with two strangers. No, I won’t tell you if she accomplishes her mission, but I will say pain is involved. Because she’ll do anything to uproot the truth.

If you remember book 1, you’ll remember Butch Laird who wrote “Jack is a liar” across every paintable surface in town. Bully that he was, he even locked Jack up in jail and left her there. Man, she detested that kid. Never mind that he had a point, he still shouldn’t have done it. And after he left town, the memory of his penetrating, intelligent eyes sent her scrambling to confess to her new pa, the sheriff. It eased her mind some, yet over the years, she’d occasionally wonder what happened to the boy behind those eyes.

Well, guess who Vickie McDonough has brought back to challenge Jack’s equilibrium as a young lady? Yup, Butch Laird himself. Except Butch was his nickname. Using his birth name and the surname he adopted from the man who took him in when he needed a home, Butch now goes by the handle, Noah Jeffers. Along with a new name, he’s a new man according to the gospel. And he’s a preacher.

Preacher Noah Jeffers is intent on hiding his identity because he wants to make restitution for the sins of his childhood without drawing attention to himself. His goal is to glorify God—not distract parishioners from the message. Except once he sees Jack again, she’s the one distracting him.

Jack is drawn to the new preacher’s compelling eyes. They hint at a vague memory, but nothing she can formulate into an image other than making her think of the fat bully, Butch Laird. But Noah Jeffers is nothing like the horror of her childhood. Noah is strong in body and spirit, a peaceful man standing firm in his faith. And somehow she’s going to discover why he won’t talk about his past.

Meanwhile, Carly Payton is back in town after serving 6 yrs in prison for robbery, kidnapping and other crimes. As a new believer, she knows God has forgiven her and only wants to live a normal life. But can the town people forgive her? And can Garret Corbett who was initially responsible for introducing her to Lookout put aside his prejudice for the jailbird and see her as a remorseful woman of faith who only wants a family like everyone else?

Vickie McDonough has taken ordinary people and put them on the carousel of life. She’s added love and faith and sent us along for the ride. Not rushed and hectic like our modern lives, but giving us an emotional journey as we rise and fall with each crest higher and each dip deeper than the one before. The pace quickens, action increases and dialogue cracks with authority and truth. Until finally, the long plunge down as Jack is faced with that monumental decision all adults have to make… what does she really want?

Here are all my posts on the Texas Boardinghouse Brides series:

Book 1 The Anonymous Bride
Book 2 Second Chance Brides
Book 3 Finally a Bride

Anita Mae Draper is retired from the Canadian Armed Forces and lives on the prairie of southeast Saskatchewan, Canada with her hubby of 30 plus years and 2 of their 4 kids. In 2005, Anita Mae decided to return to writing and make it a priority in her life. She writes old west stories set on the prairies of Saskatchewan, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming. Her characters are strong because the land demands it. Anita Mae likes to write characters who sit up and notice when that special person God’s chosen just for them walks by. The story is all about the courtship between the two main characters. But it won’t be an easy path. And if they don’t know about God at the beginning of the book, they will by the end. Anita Mae has semi-finaled in the Historical Romance category of the ACFW's 2011 Genesis contest and finaled in the Inspirational category of the 2011 Daphne du Maurier, the 2011 Fool for Love, the 2011 Duel on the Delta and 2009 Linda Howard Award of Excellence contests. She’s currently waiting to hear the phone ring and have someone say they want to buy Emma’s Outlaw. Meanwhile, she’s working on another story and trying to keep her imagination in check. A pathological picture taker, she usually has a photo or two of the quirky world she lives in on her blog at


  1. First I have to say you write wonderful book reviews.

    Sounds like another winner, a great series!

  2. Hey, thanks Deb. I appreciate you saying that. :)

    And yes, I really enjoyed this series.

  3. Great review, Anita. This sounds like a fun book. It also sounds like the heroine is adventurous. I'll have to add it to my tbr for one of those days when I need a light-hearted read.

  4. You're right, Suzie. And you've reminded me that one of the things I like best about Vickie's books are the way she describes things with her similies, etc. She gives such unique images. I can't think of one in this book offhand, but the one I remember best is in Book 1 when she said Rachel's face puckered like a raisin. I knew exactly what she meant. LOL

    Thanks, Suzie.

  5. Anita, Sounds like a wonderfully charming novel.

    LOVE your reviewing style. :)

  6. Thanks, Nike.

    I know there are those who condemn my style of reviewing because they say if they want to know what the book is about they'll read the editorial review and blurb. That a review should be about the way the author wrote it, how the author covered certain details and what I think of the author based on the book, etc.

    I guess that's fine for some, but when I go looking for a review, it's not to see if anyone liked it, because I know from experience that doesn't matter a hoot - to me.

    I scan the reviews to discover if it appeals to me on some level.
    To me, the story is the main event. Who are the characters? Can I identify with them? Do they sound like worthy adversaries?

    And if I can answer those questions, then can I convey that to another reader who may be looking for a book of this calibre?

    As for the take-away value... no, it wasn't life-changing or earth-shattering. But I didn't expect it to be. I wanted to escape into a love story that brought a few tears, some laughs and a satisfying ending that proved love is real. And I'll take that any day.

    Sorry for ranting. I was going to say this earlier when Deb first mentioned it, but didn't want to start the day like that. But Nike, I knew you wouldn't mind. Thanks for dropping in today. :D

    Anita Mae.


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