I didn’t believe we should fight the Northern states, and yet, I could not in all good conscience take up arms against the South, my home, and my friends. But more than that, I would not fight because I believe it’s a sin against God to kill another man.
When Texas joined with the rest of the Confederate states, all the young men of Cedar Grove were ready and willing to join the glorious cause. All that is, except for Clayton Holland, who refused to bear arms and kill men in a cause he didn’t believe in. Those beliefs landed him in a Confederate prison where he was subjected to brutal torture and a very close call with the firing squad. When he returns home the entire town shuns him as a traitor and a coward – including Meg Warner who hates him more for coming home alive when her young husband did not. Meg hires Clayton, an acomplished stone mason, to carve a monument to Cedar Grove’s fallen men, and she’s hoping it will give him some well deserved punishment.
She wanted, needed him to face his cowardice, to have it carved into his heart so deeply that he would feel it with every breath he took for as long as he lived.
Well, things don’t quite work out the way Meg planned, as she soon finds that Clay’s steadfast, honorable nature is a pretty damned attractive one, but let’s just say that Meg’s family and neighbors are none too thrilled with that idea.
I’d rather spend my life with one man surrounded by love than the ignorance and hatred surrounding me now.
Lorraine Heath is an author I’d never come across until the library started adding a bunch of her titles to the Kindle lending list, and I’m very glad I decided to give her a shot. This was a lovely tale of love, faith and healing, and no surprise but Meg is the one most in need of it. Clayton is the perfect strong, silent manly man with a heart of mush inside, and Meg and her bitter soul was the the right match for him. I also adored Clayton’s two younger twin brothers, they added a good mix of kid-humor and also giving us a look at Clayton’s softer side. If that newer cover for the e-book editions is giving you the bodice ripping willies, don’t panic. Any sex in this book is very understated and rather tame by today’s comparisons – and you’ll be a long time waiting for the first steamy kiss. Heath takes time building the sexual tension, focusing more on the story and the characters (how refreshing). This is the second book of Heath’s I’ve tried and there will be more in my future, she’s perfect for a rainy day lighter read.