Friday, September 19, 2014

Tried and True- Mary Connealy

My Rating: 3 Stars

Description: Kylie Wilde is the youngest sister—and the most civilized. Her older sisters might be happy dressing in trousers and posing as men, but Kylie has grown her hair long and wears skirts every chance she gets. It’s a risk—they are homesteading using the special exemptions they earned serving in the Civil War as “boys”—but Kylie plans to make the most of the years before she can sell her property and return to the luxuries of life back East.

Local land agent Aaron Masterson is fascinated with Kylie from the moment her long hair falls from her cap. But now that he knows her secret, can he in good conscience defraud the U.S. government? And when someone tries to force Kylie off her land, does he have any hope of convincing her that marrying him and settling on the frontier is the better option for her future?

My Thoughts: Tried and True is a lighthearted romance for the most part. I enjoyed the play between Kylie and Aaron quite a bit. The conflict between them, as well as Kylie's sisters and their masquerade as men kept me interested all the way through. I really wanted to know how things turned out for them. Unfortunately, I was a bit disappointed.

After reading the description of the sisters having fought in the Civil War, I expected that back story to take a larger role in the story. Like the physiological effects Kylie suffered from fighting as well as how she was overcoming them, while having to keep the full extent of her serves a secret. I think that would have been a far more interesting conflict then than what had taken place instead. I will not mention if because of spoilers, but it was not what I had expected or hoped for.

I also became a bit annoyed with Kylie who insisted on doing only "women's work". I understand that most women are not cut out for running a ranch and that many prefer to cook and clean than build cabins, but I found it a little insulting that she distinguished these things as men's work and women's work. Both are socially constructed ideas and since she lived in the West, she had a lot more freedom to define them herself with out compromising her gender.

Though not as deep as I wish it had been, Tried and True was entertaining. The lightheartedness of it came as a bit of relief in itself at the end of a long day. If the above things I mentioned do not bother you, then you will probably really enjoy the story. The Wilde sisters just might be wild enough for you.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review through Litfuse.

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