About the book~
Who would guess the most formidable adversary former gunslinger Hunter Mitchell ever faced would be a fiery, violet-eyed female? Now that he’s served his time, Hunter intends to claim the daughter he’s only just discovered. While the law is on his side this time, his daughter’s devoted aunt certainly isn’t.
Annabeth Silks can’t bear to let a onetime outlaw take little Sarah. As the daughter of an infamous madam, she knows the hardship of an unstable home. But every glimpse of Hunter’s reformed character dares Annabeth to look beyond his past…to the family and future she never thought to find.
Hunter Mitchell, a former gunslinger fresh out of a two year prison stint, returns to the brothel where he killed a man, intent on retrieving his daughter from Mattie Silks, the brothel’s owner. Reformed and longing for a chance to start fresh, he won’t allow Annabeth Silks to keep him from the sweet nine-year-old girl he just discovered was his. Annabeth can’t bear the thought of losing her niece, but even tougher for her to imagine, is leaving Charity House to live with Hunter as Sarah’s nanny, especially when her heart longs for more.
Initially, I passed on this book, non-committal about a reformed outlaw for a hero, but I’ve read other books by Renee Ryan and liked them, so I scooped it up. I’m glad I did.
I really appreciated the way Hunter treated Mattie, the brothel owner. By treating Mattie with respect and dignity, Hunter sealed the deal with Annabeth’s heart.
Relationships are complicated. I liked that the author didn’t sugarcoat Annabeth’s relationship with her mother. Ryan portrayed their unusual bond realistically, showing the embarrassment, the shame, the stigma. Annabeth loves her mother, but doesn’t appreciate being labeled a madam’s daughter or the risk of losing her reputation and home. Mattie also loves her daughter but isn’t willing to give up the finer things in life for her daughter’s sake.
I also admired how the author handled Hunter’s past. When he arrives on scene, he’s already reformed. Ryan shows us Hunter’s commitment to being a better man without being preachy.
Hunter had actually been married twice, which I found a bit confusing in the beginning and unnecessary.
I really enjoyed this story and getting to know Hunter, Annabeth, and Mattie, all strong characters. Great job, Ms. Ryan!
The Outlaw’s Redemption releases on 7/1/13 with Harlequin Love Inspired Historical, but you can preorder it here~ Preorder Link
Disclaimer: Sending a huge thanks to Harlequin Love Inspired Historical and NetGalley for providing me with an advance review e-copy. The opinions expressed in this review are my own, and I received no monetary compensation.