In McAdoo's inspirational novel, widow Susannah Baylor, with a young daughter and teenage nephew in her care, raises cotton on a small farm in northwest Texas left her by her husband. When a local buyer reneges on his offer to purchase her crop, she finds herself with only one option: cart her cotton to Jefferson herself. Convinced she cannot make the journey alone, Sue employs Henry Buckmeyer to accompany her and the children. The town gossips have labeled him a ne'er-do-well, but, with all other potential hands already four days out on the cotton train, Susannah is forced to take a chance on him. Facing the elements and other dangers, the foursome starts out with the common goal of getting their goods to market. That joint purpose must be strong enough to overcome differing opinions on God and religion, as well as conflicts of personality. With an intriguing plot line and well-developed characters, McAdoo, who's written nonfiction and children's fiction, delivers an engaging read for her first adult historical romance. Agent: Mary Sue Seymour, Seymour Agency. (Mar.)
Caryl McAdoo, author
Susannah Baylor reluctantly hires Henry Buckmeyer to help her along the Jefferson Trace, the hard stretch of land between her Texas farm and the cotton market, where she's determined to get a fair price for her crop. It's been a long, rough ten years and the widow's in danger of losing the land her husband and his brother left to her and the children, but she needs help to get both her wagons safely to Jefferson. She knows Henry's reputation as a lay-about and is prepared for his insolence, but she never expects his good looks or irresistible, gentle manner. Soon they are entwined in a romantic relationship that only gets more complicated because Henry doesn't know God the way she does. Dangers arise on the trace--but none as difficult as the trial her heart is going through. Will Susannah and Henry's love overcome their differences? And will she get her crop to market and sale it for enough to save her farm? In this heartening and adventurous tale, a young woman's fortitude, faith, and heart are put to the ultimate test.