"With Autumn's Return"

She's planning on instant success.

She didn't plan on love.

"With Autumn's Return" is the third book {though I read it without having read the first two} in the historical romance series, Westward Winds, by bestselling author Amanda Cabot {sneak peak: read an excerpt}.

Set in Wyoming Territory in the late 1800s, the story follows a young woman who has just graduated from medical school back East and moved to Cheyenne to establish her first practice. Eager to prove herself, and disprove her former primarily-male classmates' doubt in a female doctor's capabilities as well as success in the medical field, Doctor Elizabeth Harding has high hopes for her future in the progressive town of Cheyenne but soon realizes that the townspeople may be less open-minded, and more like her old peers, than she anticipated. As Elizabeth slowly gains the trust of Cheyenne's citizens, Elizabeth faces not only the lingering unwelcome and prejudice toward a "lady doctor" but also rumors and scandals that will threaten her career and her reputation. And to complicate matters, there is a growing affection between Elizabeth and Jason Nordling, the handsome attorney in the adjoining office, that raises questions in Elizabeth's mind about her calling to be a doctor and perhaps never have a home, husband, and family like most women.

With many lively, loveable characters and just enough drama and surprises to make the plot engaging and fast-paced without seeming overly staged, "With Autumn's Return" is an entertaining, enjoyable read. While the writing is not above-average, it is not below-average and never detracts from the book overall; Cabot has an ordinary writing style yet does a fine job with description and characterization, drawing readers into the story even before the unexpected turn of events in the last few chapters and "suspenseful" ending. On the other hand, I would have expected, and personally been interested in reading, more "medical" aspects throughout the book, considering the main character is a doctor; I felt the medical situations and descriptions were somewhat lacking and sometimes lame, not that I wanted blood and guts, but it is the Wild West. Also, on a different note, a significant part of the story involves a "bordello", the woman who owns the establishment, a married man who visits her, and Elizabeth's involvement with the owner and the girls she employs; while Cabot treads carefully on this subject in her writing, it is nonetheless something that parents, etc. should be mindful of for younger, even early-teen, readers.

Overall, I enjoyed and was able to get into the novel, "With Autumn's Return". Not necessarily a "page turner" but definitely interesting and engaging, Cabot has written a story about people who come to life with real emotions and conflicts, issues of morality and honor, and here and there references to God and spirituality are enough that the respective characters have reason, or lack thereof, for morals and purpose, yet not so much that they seem too perfect or pious. I recommend "With Autumn's Return" as a nice {not mentally taxing}, fun read that's perfect for a cozy afternoon curled up with a blanket and something hot to drink.



Disclaimer: This book was received for free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, in exchange for my review.

2 comments :

  1. Thanks so much for taking the time to read and review my book. I'm delighted that you enjoyed Elizabeth and Jason's story.

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    1. Honored that you stopped by, Amanda, and thank you.

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