Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Publisher:   Amber Quill Press
Release Date:  June 2003
ISBN:   1592799221
Format Reviewed: Paperback  
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Genre:   Adult, Historical Romance [1777 New York and Pennsylvania]
Reviewed: 2003
Reviewer:   Rachel A Hyde
Reviewer Notes:  

Challenge The Wind
By Debra Tash

      Young Redcoat soldier Matthew Smith was plucked from the gallows to serve in George III's army and sent to America to put down the rebellion. At the head of a party of disgruntled deserters, he stumbles upon the home of Sarah Lloyd and her family and holds them hostage. Meanwhile, Sarah's husband Jonathan and son Adam are fighting in Pennsylvania and Adam's twin sister Molly is a reluctant guest at her Uncle Henry's luxurious home. While Adam tries to find meaning in the war, Molly is wooed by the dashing Major Allen, a scion of the English aristocracy. During the interminable winter of 1777, all their lives are to change…but for better or worse?

        This is a gripping historical romance that ought to appeal to today's readers. There are no strutting alpha males or fainting virginal girls between these covers and battlefield action mixes with drawing room flirtation. Here are some strong women and some vulnerable men, but don't worry if this sounds too much of a role reversal as the opposite is true as well, and often about the same people. It is not a cozy story and the characters are certainly put through their paces, but this does not make it a depressing read, although at times there does seem to be rather an abundance of hand-wringing. I think I could have done with hearing a bit less about Matthew's wretched former life (after having got the message early on in the tale) but this is a minor gripe in what is otherwise a fine book and there is much adventure and romance to offset the tribulation. The result is a thought-provoking and convincing story that ought to appeal to both fans of historical romances as well as to people who think that romances are too flimsy for them. Another bonus is that this novel is nothing like other Debra Tash novel reviewed on this site The Maiden's Song, which shows that this is a versatile writer.

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