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How steamy is it? Simmering

Publisher's Summary

Plain and timid, debutante Pamela Burke-Smythe is a wallflower at the high-society Boston balls she attends, overlooked by possible suitors. One by one her friends become engaged, and Pamela resigns herself as to life as a spinster.

When rancher John Carter becomes guardian to his orphaned godson, Nick, nothing he does seems to help the grieving, angry boy. At his wit's end, he believes that a wife might help draw Nick out, and lonely himself, John's been thinking along matrimonial lines for a while anyway. But small Sweetwater Springs, Montana, has no suitable candidates. He decides to visit his great-aunt Hester in Boston and bring back a wife who is kind and compassionate, who can be a mother figure to Nick, and who can adapt to the hard life on the ranch.

Hester, who's also Pamela's godmother, plays matchmaker for the two. John responds to Pamela's kind heart and believes he's found the ideal woman. But Pamela never thought to marry a stranger and leave Boston, and her family and friends are against the idea. She musters all her meager courage to defy her loved ones and seize her only chance at marriage.

After a whirlwind courtship, the couple marries and travels west. Pamela discovers a run-down ranch house, a bunch of unruly cowboys, a sullen boy, and a different way of life. Can their new marriage survive the challenge?

Set in 1883, Beneath Montana's Sky is a prequel to New York Times best-selling author Debra Holland's Mail-Order Brides of the West series and Montana Sky series.

©2014 Debra Holland (P)2014 Debra Holland

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Beneath Montana's Sky

This prequel is absolutely lovely. John's love for a young and hurting Nick is what motivated his search for his true love....

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Could Have Been A Good Book


The book had an interesting theme: John's confusion on how to go about caring for his orphaned godson. He longs for his dead wife's help, so he decides to take a wife to help him with the angry young man. With no suitable candidates close by John travels east to find a bride.

In my opinion the book was not well written. There was too much unnecessary detail for such a short book.

An actress the narrator was not, and read too fast through much of the book.

I cannot recommend "Beneath Montana Sky".

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Sweet

If you could sum up Beneath Montana's Sky in three words, what would they be?

Sweet love story

What other book might you compare Beneath Montana's Sky to and why?

Belove it or not, I might compare it to Milly Taiden's Paranormal Dating Agency series. Curvy girl meets hot guy, then is taken out of her comfort zone, in order to have an epic romance.

Which character – as performed by Lara Asmundson – was your favorite?

Nick. It's easy for a woman to voice a woman, but it takes a level of talent to pull off an awkward, grieving, teenaged boy.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I laughed when everyone showed up to clean, and that woman in the garden was harassing Pamela.
I got a little misty when Nick played simple gifts.

Any additional comments?

I received my copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. I loved her other books, so decided (even though I don't usually read historicals) to give it a listen. I am pleased to say that I enjoyed it immensely, and will look forward to the rest of the series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

For the first ever I have loved an audible book

Where does Beneath Montana's Sky rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

My first audible book ever & I loved it. It brought the beloved characters alive.

What did you like best about this story?

I had already read this book & loved the story. Being brought to life like this made me imagine the story in a whole new way. I could just listen & do something else that didn't require my full attention so I could give my full attention to the story being played out. I just might have to get more of these so I can listen to a wonderful story while coloring, a pretty mindless task.

Which scene was your favorite?

When all the town's folk showed up to help the Carter's out with fixing up the old homestead & meeting the new bride. Pamela never had seen anything like this in Boston. She was amazed at the kindness of these people who welcomed her to town & a new life away from a larger bustling city.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Since listening to the story, I think I did laugh even though I probably chuckled while reading it & many places made smile.

Any additional comments?

I love all of Debra Holland's books in this series. I give this a hearty thumbs up in either written from or audible form or both. I did get to read along at first with the audible version, but finished several chapters with just the audible.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Favorites John and Pamela Carter's own Story

A prequel tells the story of people that you’ve already read about interleaved in other books in a series, but their backstory hasn’t been told yet. John and Pamela Carter, as the preeminent ranchers of Sweetwater Springs, have been a main fixture of so many of the Montana Sky books and the Mail-Order Brides of the West books by Debra Holland. Now it's their turn to have their story told on what path and reasons they met and what sticky situations they had to overcome. You’ll also get more than a glimpse of the rest of the beloved characters of Sweetwater Springs, and a lot more of the backstory of Nick Sanders, and how he got on the path to be the man he will become. As a novella, this is half the length of the others, making it a great romp that doesn’t seemed at all hurried. A book that gives you hope that with perseverance and resolve, you can make wonderful things happen.

With so many characters, narrator Lara Asmundson is given quite the workout, but she nails them all with aplomb.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book!

In Beneath Montana Sky we get to read about one if the ever present families in the series. It was wonderful to see John and Pamela find each other and find love. The narration was excellent, hearing this book after having read it gave me the feeling of discovering it again for the first time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Terri
  • United States
  • 05-12-15

I love these western romances!

I love these western romances! The books and details in them remind me of stories family members have told me in the past. They also remind me of the simple things in life. More than anything, these books remind me of love, life and happiness. We are so fortunate to have easy lives in this day and age. Way back when people were happy too, even though they didn't have the luxuries in life like we do. I am not talking about kindles and computers, I mean the simple luxuries of clean water, toilets, electricity and flu shots! Even having a doctor within a days ride was a luxury back then!

Beneath Montana's Sky (from the Montana Sky series) Is about the life and times in the old west in Sweetwater Springs, Montana and is before the Mail-Order Brides of The West series time. Here we learn about how the community of Sweetwater Springs, Montana became the community we have read and loved throughout these books!

Pamela Burke-Smythe gets overlooked each time she attends a high society gathering for suitors in Boston. Pamela is accustomed to the good life and maids in Boston. John Carter is now the guardian of his godson Nick who has been an unhappy soul since the death of his family. John decides to go to Boston to find him a wife. John brings back Pamela and life for her will be completely different from anything she has ever known. It is up to Pamela to create a home out of the dirty dingy old house John has owned forever. Read along as we discover how Sweetwater Springs community joins together as a family in time of need. This is how life was back in the old west and lots here we all could learn from too!

The author, Debra Holland does a great job in this prequel novella with a great plot and excellent background to some characters we already know and love from the Mail Order Brides of the West series. The plot is awesome and always leaves me feeling humble after reading her books. We take so much for granted in life now days and to read about the past as it was. If I learn anything from these books, It is not to sweat the small stuff. We are so fortunate. Thank you Debra for the little reminders and the wonderful stories! The narrator, Lara Asmundson does a fabulous job delivering this story to us with such clarity and emotion. I love listening to her tell these stories. To anyone reading this review... If this is your first read by Debra Holland, welcome to the old west! Debra write stories you can put down!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyed the Story.

Nice story and good intro to the Montana Sky series. Liked the characters a lot. Wasn’t enamored of the narrator. Inflections often wrong- awkward character voices (often with wrong accent) that sometimes changes. She didn’t add to the story.


Look forward to future stories.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Sweet story, love grows out of awkwardness

This was a sweet story. John was such a caring man though not prepared for Boston society. Pamela had such self-doubt that she could not believe John would choose her. The narrator did a good job of voicing the characters, it was easy to keep up. Description of John's ranch in Montana was beautifully done. The story ended a bit abrupt for me as I felt we had not spent enough time in Montana. I hope the next book finishes their story. I look forward to reading more in this series.

I received this audiobook as a gift, and this is my unsolicited review.

  • Overall
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Grab a Kleenex!

Debra Holland writes the sweetest story that will make you smile and bring a tear to your eye...you'll want to visit Sweetwater Springs yourself for a memorable, romantic journey!