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A Lawman's Christmas

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Love will give her hope in the darkest of times… Don’t miss this reader favorite McKettrick tale from #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller. The sudden death of the town marshal leaves Blue River, Texas, without a lawman…and twenty-five-year-old Dara Rose Nolan without a husband. As winter approaches and her meager seamstress income dwindles, she has li Love will give her hope in the darkest of times… Don’t miss this reader favorite McKettrick tale from #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller. The sudden death of the town marshal leaves Blue River, Texas, without a lawman…and twenty-five-year-old Dara Rose Nolan without a husband. As winter approaches and her meager seamstress income dwindles, she has limited options, none of them appealing. Unfortunately she must decide—soon—because there’s a new marshal in town, and she’s living under his roof. With the heart of a cowboy, Clay McKettrick plans to start a ranch and finally settle down. He isn’t interested in uprooting Dara Rose and her children, but he is interested in giving her protection, friendship—and passion. And when they say “I do” to a marriage of convenience, the temporary lawman’s Christmas wish is to make Dara Rose his permanent wife…. Originally published in 2011


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Love will give her hope in the darkest of times… Don’t miss this reader favorite McKettrick tale from #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller. The sudden death of the town marshal leaves Blue River, Texas, without a lawman…and twenty-five-year-old Dara Rose Nolan without a husband. As winter approaches and her meager seamstress income dwindles, she has li Love will give her hope in the darkest of times… Don’t miss this reader favorite McKettrick tale from #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller. The sudden death of the town marshal leaves Blue River, Texas, without a lawman…and twenty-five-year-old Dara Rose Nolan without a husband. As winter approaches and her meager seamstress income dwindles, she has limited options, none of them appealing. Unfortunately she must decide—soon—because there’s a new marshal in town, and she’s living under his roof. With the heart of a cowboy, Clay McKettrick plans to start a ranch and finally settle down. He isn’t interested in uprooting Dara Rose and her children, but he is interested in giving her protection, friendship—and passion. And when they say “I do” to a marriage of convenience, the temporary lawman’s Christmas wish is to make Dara Rose his permanent wife…. Originally published in 2011

30 review for A Lawman's Christmas

  1. 4 out of 5

    Carole (Carole's Random Life)

    This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books. I had a good time with this book. I have been a fan of Linda Lael Miller's writing for a very long time. I don't think that I have picked any of her books up in years though and I am pretty sure that I have never actually reviewed any of her work. I have enjoyed quite a few books from the McKettrick series so I was excited to pick this one up during a recent readathon. It ended up being a really enjoyable read for me. Clay McKettrick This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books. I had a good time with this book. I have been a fan of Linda Lael Miller's writing for a very long time. I don't think that I have picked any of her books up in years though and I am pretty sure that I have never actually reviewed any of her work. I have enjoyed quite a few books from the McKettrick series so I was excited to pick this one up during a recent readathon. It ended up being a really enjoyable read for me. Clay McKettrick moves to a small Texas town to take on the role of marshal. He is immediately welcomed by the town but one little girl ends up making a really big impression on him. He quickly learns that the little girl is the daughter of Dara Rose. Dara Rose was married to the former marshal and has found herself widowed with two little girls to support and almost no money to do so. Now that there is a new lawman in town, she knows that she will have to give up her home so that he can have the house. Clay and Dara Rose were both great characters. Clay really is a good guy that just wants to do a good job. Dara Rose has been through a whole lot and has proven that she is tough and resourceful. Dara Rose always puts her children first and refuses to take the easy way out. I thought that these two were great together and I loved how great Clay was with the girls. I thought that their relationship progressed at a really nice pace and I was really happy with how everything turned out. I would recommend this book to fans of western historical romances. This book was filled with wonderful characters, a touch of humor, some Christmas charm, and some heartwarming moments. I really liked the fact that Linda Lael Miller worked some of less than pleasant issues from this time into the story including the plight of women and children without a male in the house and the impact of poverty. I definitely plan to read more from this wonderful author soon! Initial Thoughts I had a good time with this one. I used to read Linda Lael Miller's books quite often but this is the first one that I have picked up in several years. I obviously have some catching up to do. I liked Clay, Dara Rose, and her girls a lot and thought that they all fit together perfectly. The plight of women who were left to fend for themselves and their children in this story was quite eye-opening. Book source: Purchased

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jae

    Thunderation and spit! (gotta love the kid's cussing) I had a wonderful time starting and finishing this book. I've never read any LLM book let alone any earlier ones in the McKettrick series. So I was bracing myself for some sort of elaborate and intricate saga from the previous books. But surprisingly this book really was just a homely, sweet and mellow story about Dara Rose Nolan and her two young daughters. She was the widow of the town Marshal supporting her children alone and on the brink Thunderation and spit! (gotta love the kid's cussing) I had a wonderful time starting and finishing this book. I've never read any LLM book let alone any earlier ones in the McKettrick series. So I was bracing myself for some sort of elaborate and intricate saga from the previous books. But surprisingly this book really was just a homely, sweet and mellow story about Dara Rose Nolan and her two young daughters. She was the widow of the town Marshal supporting her children alone and on the brink of getting evicted. And the arrival of Clay McKettrick the new Marshal practically turned her entire life upside down inside out. For a town Marshal, Clay just about melt my heart with his sappiness. One of my favorite wilting moments, Then he said very quietly, "Just so we understand each other, Mrs. McKettrick, I do mean to bed you, right and proper, one day soon." I might actually check out the McKettrick kinfolks after all.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sandra Hoover

    Another fantastic addition to one of the best western romance series out there! Clay & Dara Rose's story is filled with heart felt sentiment, sizzling chemistry, & snarky humor! Add in 2 precocious children that will make you laugh out loud even as your heart melts, and you have the perfect western romance! Absolutely loved this one! A Must Read! *4.5 stars Another fantastic addition to one of the best western romance series out there! Clay & Dara Rose's story is filled with heart felt sentiment, sizzling chemistry, & snarky humor! Add in 2 precocious children that will make you laugh out loud even as your heart melts, and you have the perfect western romance! Absolutely loved this one! A Must Read! *4.5 stars

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    Clay McKettrick is the new marshal of Blue River, Texas. Temporarily. He's bought a cattle ranch of his own outside Blue River, but decided to fill the vacancy as the town's law until the Spring. Dara Rose Nolan's late husband was the former marshal but met with an unfortunate and untimely death, as Edrina, Dara Rose's six year-old daughter explains to Clay upon his arrival in town - "'My papa was the marshal a while back,' she informed Clay matter-of-factly, 'but then he died in the arms of a mi Clay McKettrick is the new marshal of Blue River, Texas. Temporarily. He's bought a cattle ranch of his own outside Blue River, but decided to fill the vacancy as the town's law until the Spring. Dara Rose Nolan's late husband was the former marshal but met with an unfortunate and untimely death, as Edrina, Dara Rose's six year-old daughter explains to Clay upon his arrival in town - "'My papa was the marshal a while back,' she informed Clay matter-of-factly, 'but then he died in the arms of a misguided woman in a room above the Bitter Gulch Saloon and left us high and dry.'" With her two daughters, Edrina and Harriet, Dara Rose is barely making ends meet and has been asked to leave her home - provided to the town's marshal - to make way for the new marshal. But Clay isn't the type to oust a woman and her children out of their home. Besides, Clay is looking for a wife and he may have just found her. Set in 1914, almost at the end of the Wild West era, this is pure vintage Linda Lael Miller. The strong, honorable hero and the equally strong heroine. The kids were adorable, cute - without being too cute - and wise beyond their years. Although I've read the premise of this story many times before - the marriage of convenience - Ms Miller's execution still kept my attention. She has mastered the craft of writing western romances. Although I have to admit I enjoy her historicals a bit more than her contemps, the lady could write westerns in her sleep. A short, solid and enjoyable historical western romance with a Christmas setting as a bonus. ARC courtesy of Harlequin via NetGalley

  5. 4 out of 5

    Bookworm

    About: It's December 1914 and Clay McKettrick arrives in Blue River, Texas via a long train ride to become the towns new Marshal. Dara Rose Nolan's husband, who was the previous Marshal, passed away, a bit scandalously I might add. Dara Rose is now a widow with two young daughters and is left wondering what her fate will be. She is struggling with finances and refuses to sell her body or marry a local older man who wants to use her as his maid and put her children in an orphanage. Dara is living in About: It's December 1914 and Clay McKettrick arrives in Blue River, Texas via a long train ride to become the towns new Marshal. Dara Rose Nolan's husband, who was the previous Marshal, passed away, a bit scandalously I might add. Dara Rose is now a widow with two young daughters and is left wondering what her fate will be. She is struggling with finances and refuses to sell her body or marry a local older man who wants to use her as his maid and put her children in an orphanage. Dara is living in what is technically Clay's home now, him being the new Marshal. When he arrives at her doorstep, she is shocked to learn he doesn't want to kick her out on the street. He decides to stay at the local hotel for the time being. By a turn of events, Dara Rose finds out she will be evicted soon. Clay won't have any of that, he decides to help Dara and her daughters in any way he can. My thoughts: A Lawman's Christmas is part of Linda Lael Miller's McKettrick Series. Sometimes you just want a good old fashioned sweet romance to get lost in, this was the perfect book for that. Clay McKettrick is a hottie. He's a handsome, rugged cowboy who is looking to settle down. He's an all around good guy. Dara Rose is your lady in distress, she is in fear of losing her home and is struggling to make ends meet and to keep her family together. She also has a big secret she has kept for many years, and wonders if she can trust Clay with it. Even though she is in trouble, she has her pride and is outspoken. These two had instant chemistry, but keep it under wraps. I liked how their romance slowly developed. I also enjoyed the coziness of the story. The snowy winter setting and Christmas as a backdrop to the story were nice to read about. It's not just all sugary sweet, Dara Rose was facing poverty as were some of the other characters in the book. The author makes this aspect of the story realistic as these people fear a long harsh winter with the possibility of no food on the table or no roof above their heads. The characters were all well written and I was quickly swept up in the story. Before I knew it, I had turned the last page and was a bit sad to see it end. After reading Linda Lael Miller's A Creed in Stone Creek I quickly became a fan of this author's. A Lawman’s Christmas reminds me of one of those movies that they play on the Hallmark channel. This was a sweet story and I enjoyed every bit of it. This one will be on my top reads for 2011. I recommend this one to fans of romance, westerns and historicals or to anyone looking to get caught up in a cozy book that will tug at your heartstrings. Although A Lawman’s Christmas is part of a series, it can be read as a stand alone book. I do want to pick up more books in this series. Special thanks to Lindsay over @ BookTrib for my review copy. see my full review here http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/201...

  6. 4 out of 5

    Missie

    I only just discovered Linda Lael Miller about 4 months ago, but I have to say, she's definitely crafted a winning formula for creating the most desirable cowboys, and Clay McKettrick is no exception. The winter of 1914 finds Clay, the new marshal of Blue River, TEXAS, just settling into his role as lawman when Dara Rose, a young widow with two children and no where to go, arrests his heart. One way or another, Clay plans on making Dara his, and he's gonna have fun doing it, even if his amusement I only just discovered Linda Lael Miller about 4 months ago, but I have to say, she's definitely crafted a winning formula for creating the most desirable cowboys, and Clay McKettrick is no exception. The winter of 1914 finds Clay, the new marshal of Blue River, TEXAS, just settling into his role as lawman when Dara Rose, a young widow with two children and no where to go, arrests his heart. One way or another, Clay plans on making Dara his, and he's gonna have fun doing it, even if his amusement leads to her irritation. I wish I had more to say about A Lawman's Christmas other than, it's a light, quick, overly polite read. There just wasn't much of a conflict presented in the story, which was a tad disappointing, and the few 'dire' circumstances that arose were easily enough resolved. Having read a few other novels by Miller, I knew the whirlwind romance would be the focal point of this story, but I was kind of expecting/hoping to read about some type of action that Clay would have to deal with, like maybe a John Dillinger style bank robbery? But nope, things in Blue River, Texas were pretty quiet and uneventful. One thing I've grown accustomed to when meeting Miller's male characters is that she tends to make life really easy for them financially. These men never need for anything and again, Clay was no exception. Also, his good will knows no bounds. Even when times are tough, you can count on Clay to bring you food during a blizzard or to pay you above minimum wage after a hard days work. And while I think these qualities showcased Clay's generous side, I also found myself feeling a little irritated by the continuous use of this trope in Miller's stories. As a romantic interest, Dara Rose played her counterpart well. She resisted the high-handed cowboy for as long as she could, but let's face it, she didn't really want to hold out too long. And I can't say I blame her. Clay may have had an old-fashioned way of thinking, but deep down, he's a gentle soul who was very loving and kind-hearted. Yup, his momma raised him right! Dara's daughters were a charming delight with their quick wit and spirited personalities, and it was sweet to see Clay accept them as his own quickly and easily. A Lawman's Christmas is not a complex, plot driven novel for thrill seekers, but it is a perfect holiday romance read for a lazy day when you're snowed in and longing for a cowboy to come by with a hearty meal and a warm smile. http://www.theunreadreader.com/2011/1...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Angelc

    4.5 Stars What an old-fashioned, feel-good Christmas story! I loved it! The story, and romance were slow and satisfying, with a great cast of characters. I loved both Dara Rose's and Clay's relationship with her two little girls. The girls had real personalities, they weren't just props or seen as something for the main characters to 'take care of'. Clay's sweet side really came out where the girls were concerned. The family aspect of the tale was one of my favorite things about this book. Clay was 4.5 Stars What an old-fashioned, feel-good Christmas story! I loved it! The story, and romance were slow and satisfying, with a great cast of characters. I loved both Dara Rose's and Clay's relationship with her two little girls. The girls had real personalities, they weren't just props or seen as something for the main characters to 'take care of'. Clay's sweet side really came out where the girls were concerned. The family aspect of the tale was one of my favorite things about this book. Clay was altogether a great lead, darn near perfect in fact. Definitely the strong, silent type, I would have thought Dara Rose would fall in love with him a little faster! Even though I really enjoyed the book, a couple of things seemed a little exaggerated to me. Clay had a great job as the town marshal, but sometimes he threw his money around a bit too much as he were a millionaire. Also, the fact that on one in town was willing to help Dara Rose even the tiniest bit rang a little false for me. It seemed like it was going too far to make her situation seem really pitiful. I loved the slow, country-fied voice of the novel. When done right, this is one of my favorite styles of writing, and Miller definitely does it right. Her dialogue, especially, is spot on an old fashioned country drawl. A wonderful holiday romance about family and second chance at love. book sent by publicist in exchange for honest review reviewed for http://inthehammockblog.blogspot.com

  8. 4 out of 5

    Willow Brook

    A sweet old fashioned romance set in rural Texas of 1914. Clay McKettrick has left his family ranch in Arizona to be the temporary Marshall in the depressed little town of Blue River until he gets his cattle ranch up and running. Dara Rose is the previous marshall's widow and mother of two daughters, ages 5 and 6. She is virtually destitute and living in the house/shack that is meant for Clay to live in. Luckily for her, Clay is immediately taken with her and soon offers her a marriage of conven A sweet old fashioned romance set in rural Texas of 1914. Clay McKettrick has left his family ranch in Arizona to be the temporary Marshall in the depressed little town of Blue River until he gets his cattle ranch up and running. Dara Rose is the previous marshall's widow and mother of two daughters, ages 5 and 6. She is virtually destitute and living in the house/shack that is meant for Clay to live in. Luckily for her, Clay is immediately taken with her and soon offers her a marriage of convenience that is a huge life saver, though he has every hope and intention of turning it into a true marriage eventually. As with all of Miller's historical Westerns I've read, I really enjoyed the details of dally routines, hardships and satisfaction of life a century or so ago. And I love Miller's heroes. They are stand-up guys, strong, decent and fundamentally kind. Not saying they are perfect, some of them can be real jerks at times but they are deep down the kind of people who can be trusted and relied on to come through in the end. That is Clay, the laid back, laconic Marshall who has big plans for his life, the woman he falls in love with and the little girls he now considers daughters. My only complaint is the story was too short. I would have liked to seen a bit more of the relationship between Clay and Dara Rose develop as well as a bit more info on how a couple of the secondary characters fared.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Mareli

    I spent my holidays reading the whole McKettrick's series. Old western. Wonderful. I loved Dara Rose from the start. She's proud, she loves her daughters and she's ready to do anything for them. But she cannot marry a man who doesn't want her daughters. Wonderful story! I spent my holidays reading the whole McKettrick's series. Old western. Wonderful. I loved Dara Rose from the start. She's proud, she loves her daughters and she's ready to do anything for them. But she cannot marry a man who doesn't want her daughters. Wonderful story!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Anne Osterlund

    Clay arrives in Blue River, having accepted a temporary post as sheriff in exchange for little pay and free housing. Poor fellow. When a young girl meets him at the station, offers to hold his horse, and then introduces him to her mama, Clay is toast. Naturally the child, her younger sister, and their fiery widowed mother are all camped out in the house the city has set aside for him. Clay refuses to move in and see the young widow and her children evicted. Of course, business in Blue River is a Clay arrives in Blue River, having accepted a temporary post as sheriff in exchange for little pay and free housing. Poor fellow. When a young girl meets him at the station, offers to hold his horse, and then introduces him to her mama, Clay is toast. Naturally the child, her younger sister, and their fiery widowed mother are all camped out in the house the city has set aside for him. Clay refuses to move in and see the young widow and her children evicted. Of course, business in Blue River is a bit more complicated than that. A Lawman's Christmas is a pleasant holiday romp with its heart in the right place. I especially liked spunky young Edrina, and I appreciated the forthright depictions of the family's poverty and the sparse options available to a young widowed mother with two children. This novella is actually the first half of the book I purchased. I haven't read the second enclosed novel yet, but when I do I will review that story separately.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Judy & Marianne from Long and Short Reviews

    Originally posted at: http://longandshortreviews.blogspot.c... When Clay McKettrick accepts a job as the marshal of the small town Blue River, Texas, it’s not his only plan, but a means to achieve what he really wants: a wife, children, and a ranch. The time is 1914. Hostilities in Europe are heating up; it’s only a matter of time until buyers will be looking for cattle to feed the armies. Clay plans to be ready. What he doesn’t plan on is falling for his predecessor’s widow. Dara Rose Nolan is oc Originally posted at: http://longandshortreviews.blogspot.c... When Clay McKettrick accepts a job as the marshal of the small town Blue River, Texas, it’s not his only plan, but a means to achieve what he really wants: a wife, children, and a ranch. The time is 1914. Hostilities in Europe are heating up; it’s only a matter of time until buyers will be looking for cattle to feed the armies. Clay plans to be ready. What he doesn’t plan on is falling for his predecessor’s widow. Dara Rose Nolan is occupying the cottage promised to the new marshal as part of his pay package. But Dara Rose and her two small girls don’t have another place to go...not unless she decides to accept a neighboring rancher’s offer to be his housekeeper and send her daughters to the poor house. Clay, struck by the young woman’s plight and determination, decides he can bunk at the jailhouse until other arrangements can be made, but two things happen to change his mind. First, he’s attracted to the young woman and likes her precocious daughters, and second, the town council is going to evict Dara Rose and sell the cottage if Clay isn’t going to use it. A hasty marriage seems the expedient thing to do, but is it the answer or an attempt at a solution with even greater problems? Dara Rose is also attracted to Clay, but can she risk telling the handsome lawman her own secrets? Can she risk her heart over a man who may turn out to be one more disappointment in a life of disappointments? Ms. Miller has created a charming Christmas story that had me hooked from the first page. Dara Rose and her daughters were very much three-dimensional characters, and her hesitance around Clay understandable. I liked her resourcefulness and thrift, even though I didn’t buy the December productivity of her laying hens (mine all but stop laying in October and don’t begin again until February, but maybe California hens differ from Texas hens). Still, the eggs arriving in the nick of time makes for a sweet story. I felt the epilogue was overdone in that it was an eleven page love scene which seemed like an add-on, just to show the reader that Dara Rose and Clay were going to have a steamy marriage. In the case of A Lawman’s Christmas with it’s charming setting and delightful characters, I think less is more. A fun, sweet and entertaining read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Martin

    This was a very nice historical romance. Clay McKettrick comes to Blue River, Texas to mend a broken heart and start a life that isn't always being measured against his grandfather and uncles. He wants to make his own success. He also wants to start a family though love isn't really on his mind. He plans to build his own successful dynasty. The first person Clay meets is 6-year-old Edrina Nolan. Her father was the former sheriff who recently died. When Clay returns her to her home he meets Dara R This was a very nice historical romance. Clay McKettrick comes to Blue River, Texas to mend a broken heart and start a life that isn't always being measured against his grandfather and uncles. He wants to make his own success. He also wants to start a family though love isn't really on his mind. He plans to build his own successful dynasty. The first person Clay meets is 6-year-old Edrina Nolan. Her father was the former sheriff who recently died. When Clay returns her to her home he meets Dara Rose, the former sheriff's widow. She is in tough straights trying to survive as a widow and care for her children. She is currently living in the house that goes with the sheriff's job but the town fathers want to evict her so that Clay will have the house. Dara Rose is way too busy trying to survive to have any interest in love. When the town fathers give Dara Rose an ultimatum, Clay proposes a solution. He will marry her and they can stay in the house together. Dara Rose accepts even though she doesn't love Clay because it is the best of several bad options. It takes time and perseverance for Clay to win Dara Rose's heart and trust. But he is just the man for the job. What I like about Miller's romances is that twist that it is the man who is eager to settle down and have a family. This is different than most of the romances I read. I also like the strong family values in the story. This one was mainly a courtship story. There isn't any physical intimacy between Clay and Dara Rose until after they are married and in just the last few pages of the book. Fans of Western romances will enjoy this one. I was a special fan of feisty Edrina Nolan and her more reticent but equally stubborn sister Harriet. Those two little girls could tug at anyone's heartstrings.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Rhonda

    It's been awhile since I have read a book by Linda Lael Miller, makes me want to dig out my other books by her and reread them. Definately read more books of hers. Clay McKettricks want to start his own ranch so he moved away from his family to texas. Clay plans to mark time over winter as a new sherriff in town. Thier is a small house that comes with the sherriff job, but the last sherriff widow and two daughters still live thier. Soon as Clay gets his horse of the train Edrina comes up to hold It's been awhile since I have read a book by Linda Lael Miller, makes me want to dig out my other books by her and reread them. Definately read more books of hers. Clay McKettricks want to start his own ranch so he moved away from his family to texas. Clay plans to mark time over winter as a new sherriff in town. Thier is a small house that comes with the sherriff job, but the last sherriff widow and two daughters still live thier. Soon as Clay gets his horse of the train Edrina comes up to hold his reins so he can help the train conducter shut the car up. Edrina is up on the horse bareback when Clay turns around. I love Edrina she is smart,nice and funny at age 7. She tells Clay that now he is thier they will have to go to poor house. Clay tells Dara Rose for now he will bunk at jail. The mayor tells her she needs to be out after Christmas if the new sherriff does not want it the town will sell the house. Dara Rose does not know where to turn. Her choices are to be a ranch housekeeper and cook than after a year the ranger might marry her, but girls are not welcome. The other choice is work at brothel and girls cant live her. Thier is no way she is leaving her girls. When Clay hears what the Mayor says he proposes marriage to Dara Rose right now it will be in name only and hope that one day will be a real mariage. I like this good christmas story. I was given this ebook in exchange for honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lynne Young

    I really enjoyed the story in this book. I have enjoyed many books by this author and knew I would like this one as well. The story in this book is one of those feel good, happily ever after stories that are perfect for a holiday themed book. I absolutely loved Edrina. At 6 years old she is wise beyond her years as is her 5 year old sister. Edrina had a way of exasperating her mother while speaking the truth and getting answers to questions no one wanted to answer. Clay McKettrick came to the tow I really enjoyed the story in this book. I have enjoyed many books by this author and knew I would like this one as well. The story in this book is one of those feel good, happily ever after stories that are perfect for a holiday themed book. I absolutely loved Edrina. At 6 years old she is wise beyond her years as is her 5 year old sister. Edrina had a way of exasperating her mother while speaking the truth and getting answers to questions no one wanted to answer. Clay McKettrick came to the town, what there is of it, of Blue River, Texas to be the new Marshall. He had all he could do to keep himself busy in such a small town but the minute he laid eyes on Dara Rose Nolan he knew he was in love. The journey that takes them from "hello" to "I love you" is quite a story and not to be missed. I read this book in one night. It has characters you can fall in love with, ones you can relate to, and ones you might just smack if you could. I highly recommend this book for the holiday season or anytime.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Aoi

    A warm oldfashioned Christmas romance. Ms. Miller can churn out these westerns a mile a minute, yet they never get stale! Fortune has not been kind to Dara Rose, a newly widowed mother with two young children. With her husband, the town marshall killed, she faces eviction & destitution. With options (and money) running out, she worries if she will be able to keep her children safe with her. Moved by her plight, Clay McKettrick steps in, and offers marriage. I love the slow pace of the 'homesteadi A warm oldfashioned Christmas romance. Ms. Miller can churn out these westerns a mile a minute, yet they never get stale! Fortune has not been kind to Dara Rose, a newly widowed mother with two young children. With her husband, the town marshall killed, she faces eviction & destitution. With options (and money) running out, she worries if she will be able to keep her children safe with her. Moved by her plight, Clay McKettrick steps in, and offers marriage. I love the slow pace of the 'homesteading' novels. I did feel that even though Dara Rose's poverty and suffering weren't romantisized, Clay McKettrick's throwing money left and right was a little improbable. This was ofcourse, in an era where people's wealth was tied to their property and didn't roam around with wads of cash in hand. The children, Edrina and Harriet were charming from the start, more so Edrina who went "Thunderation and spit!" for any surprising thing. A short, solid romance for a holiday season.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Patricia

    I really enjoyed the plot...But...the reason I gave it four stars instead of five is the last chapter. I have to say that I was not into all the explicit sex details that Miller felt was necessary to explain. I like a good 'love making' scenario but honestly..an entire chapter of what goes on under the covers. This was a Christmas book...just some really nice romance would have been nice. I really enjoyed the plot...But...the reason I gave it four stars instead of five is the last chapter. I have to say that I was not into all the explicit sex details that Miller felt was necessary to explain. I like a good 'love making' scenario but honestly..an entire chapter of what goes on under the covers. This was a Christmas book...just some really nice romance would have been nice.

  17. 4 out of 5

    June Guymon

    A warm Christmas tale starring a competent Dudley Do-Right hero, a precious seven year old child, her frightened sister and a distrusting mom. Readers will enjoy spending the holidays with Clay and his new family.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Clay McKettrick is the new Marshall in Blue River, Texas, though it is only supposed to be his job until they find someone else to fill the office. He wants to get started on the cattle ranch that is his true reason for making Blue River home. In the meantime, he finds himself drawn to the late Marshall's widow, Dara Rose. She also still lives in what is supposed to be the Marshall home, supplied by the city for each man that fills the office. Since Dara Rose has nowhere else to go Clay allows h Clay McKettrick is the new Marshall in Blue River, Texas, though it is only supposed to be his job until they find someone else to fill the office. He wants to get started on the cattle ranch that is his true reason for making Blue River home. In the meantime, he finds himself drawn to the late Marshall's widow, Dara Rose. She also still lives in what is supposed to be the Marshall home, supplied by the city for each man that fills the office. Since Dara Rose has nowhere else to go Clay allows her to stay there until she finds another home for herself and her two daughters. Dara Rose finds herself attracted to the new Marshall also, though she does not want to be. Together they make some decisions that work for both of them falling deeply in love in the process. Good characters. Dara Rose's daughters are spunky.

  19. 5 out of 5

    BoondocksGlam

    I have stacks of Christmas themed books and I try get through at least a few every year around the holidays. I was a little concerned I wouldn’t easily get through this because I’ve never read any McKettrick books but happily, this stands alone just fine. In fact, while it stands on its own, it was written in just the right way to pique my interest in the rest of the McKettrick books. If you’re looking for things to criticize, I’m sure you’ll find some. But if you’re looking for a quaint, easy h I have stacks of Christmas themed books and I try get through at least a few every year around the holidays. I was a little concerned I wouldn’t easily get through this because I’ve never read any McKettrick books but happily, this stands alone just fine. In fact, while it stands on its own, it was written in just the right way to pique my interest in the rest of the McKettrick books. If you’re looking for things to criticize, I’m sure you’ll find some. But if you’re looking for a quaint, easy holiday read, this is a great little book to add to your list. In the midst of a progressively over commercialized Christmas season each year- there are plenty of reminders in this book to stop and think of a time when people were grateful for one special gift and would have thought what’s under many trees today to be over indulgent and unnecessary.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Veronica Rivera

    This book was cute for words. The McKettricks are at it again, this time a story about the 3rd generation of rhe family from the Triple M ranch. Clay just became the marshal of Blue River Texas when he finds himself in bit of a situation. The previous marshal dies suddenly in the arms of dance hall firl, and leaves behind a wife and two daughters who are penniless and will lose the home they live in when Clay comes to town to become Marshal. Will Clay be able to do that, put her and her children This book was cute for words. The McKettricks are at it again, this time a story about the 3rd generation of rhe family from the Triple M ranch. Clay just became the marshal of Blue River Texas when he finds himself in bit of a situation. The previous marshal dies suddenly in the arms of dance hall firl, and leaves behind a wife and two daughters who are penniless and will lose the home they live in when Clay comes to town to become Marshal. Will Clay be able to do that, put her and her children in the street or will lovw hit him at seeing Dara Rose? This was an endearing story that easily van be read in one sitting. Love the attention to detail that was plced wirh characters and above all the story of how love can be found even when you believe all is lost

  21. 4 out of 5

    Juliewheatcox.Net

    Since Clay McKettrick was often referred to as the family patriarch throughout the McKettrick series, it was nice that this book went back in time to tell his story. Since he had been working on his father's ranch his whole life, it was unclear how a man in his late twenties had enough money to buy a 2,000 acre ranch, was able to buy a prefab house from Sears, and planned to buy cattle. It would have been nice to have that explained. I didn't blame Dara Rose for being concerned since he was spend Since Clay McKettrick was often referred to as the family patriarch throughout the McKettrick series, it was nice that this book went back in time to tell his story. Since he had been working on his father's ranch his whole life, it was unclear how a man in his late twenties had enough money to buy a 2,000 acre ranch, was able to buy a prefab house from Sears, and planned to buy cattle. It would have been nice to have that explained. I didn't blame Dara Rose for being concerned since he was spending money like a drunken sailor. It wasn't normal for such a young man to have the kind of money that he supposedly had. Other than that glaring oversight, it was an enjoyable story.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Eileen

    Clay McKettrick and Dara Rose Nolan I jumped a few to get to this Christmas story and it was a very enjoyable story for the holidays. It’s 1914 and Clay has left to start on his own in Texas. He is the new Marshall in Blue River and eventually wants to ranch here and start a family. But first he has to do his job and settle in. Times are harsh and Dara is doing the best since she is living in the marshal’s home on borrowed time. What makes sense is to marry him for the convenience of staying out. Clay McKettrick and Dara Rose Nolan I jumped a few to get to this Christmas story and it was a very enjoyable story for the holidays. It’s 1914 and Clay has left to start on his own in Texas. He is the new Marshall in Blue River and eventually wants to ranch here and start a family. But first he has to do his job and settle in. Times are harsh and Dara is doing the best since she is living in the marshal’s home on borrowed time. What makes sense is to marry him for the convenience of staying out. It also helps that he is attracted to her. Cute kids, cute dog and a slow to love for Clay and Dara.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Marian Tustison O'Connor

    This was a cute story with way too many inconsistencies to rate higher. of course for me.the whole knee deep.snow in Texas killed one star. Piper' s poor pitiful me attitude and inability to launder clothes killed another star. why burn your only cloak because it had blood on it but make sure you cut it up first. she was also ready tok destroys quilt because it had some blood and mud on it.then whine because she had nothing warm? how can she love Sawyer when she didn't trust him at all??? so if y This was a cute story with way too many inconsistencies to rate higher. of course for me.the whole knee deep.snow in Texas killed one star. Piper' s poor pitiful me attitude and inability to launder clothes killed another star. why burn your only cloak because it had blood on it but make sure you cut it up first. she was also ready tok destroys quilt because it had some blood and mud on it.then whine because she had nothing warm? how can she love Sawyer when she didn't trust him at all??? so if you read this book as pure fantasy not romance it gets 3 stars

  24. 4 out of 5

    Julie Gazca

    Fast, easy read, reminded me why I liked this author so much. The main character overcomes hard times when her husband dies and leaves her to figure out how to care for her children. The future was bleak, but slowly things start falling to place. There's a HEA ending, if you like that sort of thing -raises hand- Fast, easy read, reminded me why I liked this author so much. The main character overcomes hard times when her husband dies and leaves her to figure out how to care for her children. The future was bleak, but slowly things start falling to place. There's a HEA ending, if you like that sort of thing -raises hand-

  25. 4 out of 5

    Vicki

    Can't go wrong with this book for the holidays. Clay McKetterick has been dumped by his fiance so he takes a job a a sheriff in Blur River, Texas. He also buys 2000 acres to start a ranch. When he goes to the house (shack) he's promised by the mayor there is somebody living there, the widow of the sheriff he is replacing. Great read and funny and sad. Wonderful read. Can't go wrong with this book for the holidays. Clay McKetterick has been dumped by his fiance so he takes a job a a sheriff in Blur River, Texas. He also buys 2000 acres to start a ranch. When he goes to the house (shack) he's promised by the mayor there is somebody living there, the widow of the sheriff he is replacing. Great read and funny and sad. Wonderful read.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Donna Schwartz

    Easy read, if a little shallow. Was too short to really allow for completr development of characters. Could be that the author was relying on previous books in the series. Main characters seemed like nice people, but it needed just a little more excitment.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Judith Sherrod

    A Lawman's Christmas So, Clay McKettrick left Arizona for the job as Marshall in a small town in Texas. There he is greeted by the unlikely welcoming committee of s six year old going on forty. He married the former Marshall's widow and falls in love.. Merry Christmas. A Lawman's Christmas So, Clay McKettrick left Arizona for the job as Marshall in a small town in Texas. There he is greeted by the unlikely welcoming committee of s six year old going on forty. He married the former Marshall's widow and falls in love.. Merry Christmas.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    I don't always like historical novels, but this one was interesting with dynamic characters and a great story of the West in the early 1900's. Any of her books in the McKettrick series are good reads. I don't always like historical novels, but this one was interesting with dynamic characters and a great story of the West in the early 1900's. Any of her books in the McKettrick series are good reads.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sue Taylor

    This was a simple, smaller book. It was an easy read, but the end seemed just a bit rushed. It could've used one more chapter to develop the relationship near the end of the story. Otherwise, I really enjoyed it and plan to read more of the Mckettrick series. This was a simple, smaller book. It was an easy read, but the end seemed just a bit rushed. It could've used one more chapter to develop the relationship near the end of the story. Otherwise, I really enjoyed it and plan to read more of the Mckettrick series.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Frances

    This is my first Linda Lael Miller book. I enjoyed it. The kids were charming and really added to the story. I was not expecting the love scene at the end. A little graphic for a gentle Christmas novel.

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