Saturday, November 14, 2009

About the Book: Ride to Raton

After losing the heart of his fianc'e to his brother, James Owen leaves home to make a new life for himself. The turbulent world of post-Civil War Colorado Territory is fraught with danger and prejudice that increase his bitter loneliness as personal setbacks threaten to break him. Then James' journey brings him into contact with another wayfarer, beautiful young Amparo Garces, who has come from Santa Fe to Colorado to marry a stranger.

Through a twist of fate, their futures are changed forever when their lives are merged in a marriage of convenience. James and Amparo undertake a hazardous horseback trek over Raton Pass to Santa Fe, battling their personal demons, a challenging language barrier, and winter's raging storms. Will their journey end in life or death?

Marsha Ward has one foot in the 21st century and one in the 19th. Her characters hew closely to those wild days, portraying their lives and times. Readers love her for that.

—Gary Svee, two-time Spur Award Winner
Western Writers Newsletter, Sep. 2003

Genre: Fiction - Western

Reviews -- Reviews -- Reviews -- Reviews

Rousing western fiction, November 30, 2003
By Carol Crigger (Spokane Valley, WA)

When James Owen's fiancee up and marries his brother, James's rage drives him from his home. He sets out for Colorado, looking to work in the mines. He makes the mistake, however, of stopping in Pueblo City where trouble finds him. Set upon, shot, then jailed, an old family "friend" bails him out. The help is not free, and James must work himself clear of these entanglements.

On his way over the mountains at last, he finds the body of wealthy Mexican. A letter explains that the dead man was going to Leones to acquire a bride. James has found an expensive bride gift on the body and determines he must take it, along with an explanation, to the woman.
At the same time, events have sent Amparo Garces y Martinez on a journey from Santa Fe into Colorado where an arranged marriage awaits her. Arriving at the mission, she waits there for her husband to claim her. However, it is James Owen who arrives. In a moment of chivalry, James marries the girl with the intention of taking her back to Santa Fe. Naturally, his plans go awry. First, although he fights his feelings, he falls in love with her. Second, Amparo willingly, joyously, returns his love, and somewhere between here and there, James decides they should go home to his family.

While on the trail, upon reaching Trinidad, they are swept up in a fight between Mexican and white battling factions. Barricaded in the town mercantile, they hope to avoid the trouble--but trouble comes to them. Caught in a crossfire, Amparo is shot, and now James takes up a trail of vengeance against the killers of his lost love.

Ride To Raton is the action packed story of a conflicted man who strives always to do the right thing. The story will catch at your heart and stay with you long after you put the book down. Highly recommended for all fans of western lore.

See all 3 Reviews

Paperback: 222 pages
Publisher: iUniverse, Inc. (November 13, 2003)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 059530169X
ISBN-13: 978-0595301690
Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches
Shipping Weight: 12.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars (3 customer reviews) Sales Rank: #849,778 in Books

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