Ed Talbot isn't husband material. He's an outlaw, was forced into his father's gang at the age of 13, and is wanted dead or alive in more than one territory. But now his father is dead, he hates the life, the blood, and his brother's rages. When a stagecoach robbery goes awry, Ed ends up with a satchel full of charming letters from an enticing young miss. Unfortunately for Miss Lizzie Cobb, her betrothed is now dead, and Ed Talbot sees a way out. Impersonating a fine, upstanding young man shouldn't be too difficult. Despite the risks, falling in love with her proves to be all too easy.
Isolated on her mother's ranch just outside of Tombstone, Miss Lizzie Cobb doesn't have the time or the means to find a respectable husband. As a half-Apache woman in the Arizona Territory, being a mail order bride seems like the only solution to her problem until she realizes that San Francisco is too far away, and she'll have to leave her vulnerable mother and baby brother behind. Her solution? Call off the wedding.
When her groom shows up on her doorstep, she's shocked. He's handsome, strong, and has traveled hundreds of miles to claim her. His kisses inflame her body and his presence soothes her soul. Falling for the rugged man is beyond her control. But the past has a way of catching up to outlaws, and facing the truth is going to be hard...for both of them.
©2014 Cynthia Woolf (P)2016 Cynthia Woolf
Mail Order Outlaw is a tale of a man trapped in a life he abhorred, and a woman trapped into a selfless life by duty to her mother and brother.
Ed risked death to escape his life as an outlaw. After robbing a stagecoach, in which his father was killed, Ed saw a chance to get away and took it, knowing if he was caught his brother would not hesitate to kill him. Nobody left their gang alive, and his brother enjoyed killing.
Lizzie couldn't bring herself to leave the ranch she loves and her family who needs her, thus calling off her "mail order" marriage. But when Ed shows up impersonating her mail order husband, Mal, she decides to give him a chance.
Can a life based on lies succeed? What will happen to Ed/Mal and Lizzie's plans for the future when Ed's cruel brother finds him? Can their love survive?
The narrator did a good job distinguishing people by voice changes, but the "matter of fact" way it is read was hard for me to get used to. Since it is an emotional story it would have been better to have it read with more emotion, in my opinion. Regardless, I enjoyed listening to Mail Order Outlaw.
I'm an avid reader of Romance and a true romantic at heart. I also read and review in other sub-genres as well. Happy reading!
I have read several books by Cynthia Woolf and have enjoyed them a great deal. Mail Order Outlaw may well be my favorite so far. Her writing is smooth and even though the plot of a mail order bride has been used many times, she puts a fresh spin on this one. I thoroughly enjoyed this delightful book.
I am not going to do a synopsis because Ms. Woolf has accurately given a detailed one. Mail Order Outlaw is an entertaining read and captured my attention from the first page and held it until the end. The pacing is quick and lively, along with excellent dialogue between the hero and heroine and the supporting characters.
Lizzie Cobb is a wonderful heroine. She is loyal to her loved ones, honest to a fault and has an independent side, yet she also comes across as feminine. Considering she rarely wears a dress and is able to manage her young brother’s rancher on her own is quite a feat. Well done, Ms. Woolf. Lizzie has to deal with prejudices because of her Indian blood, but she does it with grace.
Ed/Mal is a great hero. While life has dealt him a bad hand of cards, he has been able to avoid being tainted by his brother and father, choosing to hold his teachings from his mother close to his heart. I loved that he took an opportunity to escape his outlaw life and in such an innovative way. While he starts his courtship of Lizzie under a cloud of deceit, he does it so sincerely, I could not hold it against him.
Lizzie and Mal have great chemistry, and Ms. Woolf creates a wonderful and believable arch for their romance. I truly wanted them to find a way past the rocky start in their relationship. The love scenes, while explicit to some degree, are very tender and were devoted more to the emotions involved than the physical description of the sexual act. They also happen after their marriage. I really appreciated the delicacy Ms. Woolf used.
If you enjoy a unique love story with endearing characters and a good bit of suspense, then you will love Mail Order Outlaw as much as I did. I look forward to reading the next book in the Brides of Tombstone series. Happy reading!
Love westerns so of disappointed.
really good story idea and setting but needed more character development and snappy dialog.
I am not sure I will. The male characters were done very well and the general narration was good, but Lia Frederick made Lizzie sound like a little, whiney girl instead of a grown woman who is in charge of a ranch and the voice was a bit shrill for me. This could very well be a preference issue too.
Cindy spins a wonderful story of how a man who no longer wants to live the way he was raised finds redemption and love in the arms of a woman who just wants to provide for her mother and brother. In Lizzie quest, she finds both love and heartache. This story is not your normal mail-order-bride story and I really liked the twist! Lizzie wants to help her brother grow up and go to college as well as care for her Indian mother. Marriage is not easy for a "half-breed" though so she decides to become a mail-order bride, but as the date gets closer for her to join her fiance, she realizes that she cannot leave her family, so she changes her plans to leave her ranch and informs her to-be-husband. The problem is that he is already at her doorstep ready to get married! His has problems of his own though in that he is not the man that Lizzie is prepared to marry and this could derail the whole thing. Ed wants to live a different life from his forced "outlaw" lifestyle. When given the chance, he changes his identity and tries to become the man who Lizzie think he is. Will it work or will she end it all when she finds out who he really is? And what about the gang he leaves for his new life? Will they let him be or will his past come to haunt then both?
The audible book was given to me for review consideration.
I would rate this heat factor as a strong PG-13 book for its language and sexual content.
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