Have You Read GUNPOWDER TEA by Margaret Brownley?

Gunpowder Tea
by Margaret Brownley

About the book~
In a case that could change her career, Miranda uncovers a love that will change her life.

When Miranda Hunt sees the classified ad for an heiress to the legendary Last Chance Ranch, she knows assuming the identity of Annie Beckman is the perfect cover. As one of the finest agents for the Pinkerton Detective Agency, Miranda has been tasked with apprehending the Phantom – an elusive and notorious train robber thought to be hiding on the sprawling ranch.

But she isn’t the only one there with something to hide. Wells Fargo detective Jeremy Taggert is working the scene undercover as well. And although their true identities are a secret, it is impossible for Jeremy and Miranda to hide the spark that flares between them.

But neither is about to let romance interfere with such a huge case. Besides, Miranda hasn’t removed Jeremy from her list of suspects yet. The closer they come to uncovering the identity of the Phantom, the more dangerous he gets – and no one on the ranch is safe.

But neither are their hearts – the longer Miranda and Jeremy spends working together, the harder it becomes to keep their feelings in check. Their careers – and their lives – depend on solving this case. Love will have to wait.

My summary… 

After growing up in a household of brothers and feeling responsible for her mother’s untimely death, undercover operative Miranda Hunt tries to please her father and follows in his footsteps, determined to be the best operative Pinkerton employs. So when her boss assigns her to track down the Phantom, she’s thrilled about the “assignment of a lifetime.” Not so thrilled that she’s attracted to her prime suspect, David Branch, really Jeremy Taggert, an undercover Wells Fargo detective who infiltrated the Phantom’s robbery gang. 

“There should be a law against handsome thieves.”

My thoughts…

Wow! If you thought Waiting for Morning was fabulous (and I did!), wait until you read Gunpowder Tea! I can’t think of one element that could be improved. Not one. And don’t you just love the cover? It perfectly incorporates the tone of the book. Playful, yet suspenseful, combined with daily afternoon teas featuring a certain grumpy Miss Walker, the owner of the Last Chance Ranch, who says, 

“…of course I have enemies. Making enemies is so much easier than making friends, and they’re far less trouble to maintain.” ha!

Margaret Brownley hooked me with the opening chapter, laugh out loud funny, and kept me glued to the pages with a compelling, fast moving plot. When I closed the book, I was wearing a goofy grin. That’s just the kind of book I love to read! What about you?

And I always love a book more when it addresses certain sensitive topics, and this one did. Miranda came from a mixed heritage, an Indian mother and white father. 

“Her Indian heritage was first thing people saw. Many didn’t bother looking for anything else.” 
So many years later, are we really any better at 
appreciating and valuing every human being?

No worries about picking up Gunpowder Tea before the first two books in the series. Each book is fine to read as a stand alone. But now that I’ve been introduced to Margaret Brownley’s books, I can’t wait to scoop up the first book in the series, Dawn Comes Early. What are you waiting for -> Purchase Link

Disclaimer: Sending a big thank you to Margaret Brownley and Thomas Nelson Publishing for providing me with an advance review copy of Gunpowder Tea. The opinions expressed in this review are my own, and I received no monetary compensation.

Have you read Gunpowder Tea? 
Do you agree with my review? 
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WAITING FOR MORNING by Margaret Brownley ~ My Review

About the book:

Molly Hatfield comes to Arizona Territory seeking stability and security. But living in Cactus Patch provides her with more than she ever dreamed.

There is nothing Molly wouldn’t do for her teenaged brother, Donny. Blaming herself for the accident that left him wheelchair bound, Molly has dedicated her life to his care. But in 1896, gainful employment for a woman is hard to come by. So when Molly learns that an eccentric rancher in Cactus Patch, Arizona, is looking for an heiress—someone to take over management of the ranch in exchange for future ownership—she jumps at the chance to provide a real home for her brother.

However, Molly didn’t bank on meeting Dr. Caleb Fairbanks, the town’s charming unmarried doctor. Caleb has a way with Molly that makes her nervous. But it’s how he is with her brother that really alarms her. Caleb sees past the wheelchair and genuinely likes Donny, but Molly fears he’s putting unrealistic ideas into her brother’s head. Falling in love with Caleb would threaten everything she’s worked for, even her brother’s future happiness. But it could be the very reason God brought her to Last Chance Ranch.
In my humble opinion:

Molly Hatfield is the sole caretaker for her teenage brother, Donny, who lost the use of his legs in an accident while he was an infant. After rescuing her brother from a hotel fire, Molly determines to provide a more stable home for him, so she answers an ad from a rancher in Arizona. If she can prove her worth and learn the business, she will inherit the ranch. The only stipulation is that she must sign a contract saying she will never marry. That’s not a problem for her because she has yet to meet a man willing to marry her and accept her brother. Until she meets Dr. Caleb Fairbanks.

When Caleb was first introduced, I found him somewhat flirty and wasn’t sure I considered him hero-worthy. Did that ever change! <How many times do I judge somebody in real life based on a faulty initial impression?> He was unselfish and gentle, considerate and compassionate towards his patients, including Donny. Caleb challenged Donny to become independent, so Donny could live life to the fullest, and encouraged Molly to stop coddling her brother because of the guilt she carried over his accident. I enjoyed the entire cast of characters, including Bertha, the horseless carriage; Orbit, the blind horse; and Magic, Caleb’s dog that went with him everywhere. Every character faced challenges and blossomed. 

Wow! This is a book that hits all the right buttons! Just enough historical details, an intriguing plot combined with a sweet romance to keep me turning pages, and an ending that made me smile. As a relatively new historical lover myself, this is the first book I’ve read by Margaret Brownley, but I intend to devour more by this author. Although this is part of the Brides of Last Chance Ranch series, you really don’t need to read them in order. It stands alone just fine.

Disclaimer: Sending a huge thanks to BookSneeze and Thomas Nelson for providing me with a free copy in exchange for my fair and unbiased review.