Trail of Storms
Here's the back cover copy:
Jessie Bingham put heartbreak away to tend to her sister's needs, but when she settled for second best in love, she didn't foresee that James Owen would come back into her life.
The aftermath of the Civil War creates cruel circumstances for the Bingham family. A brutal attack on Jessie's sister, Hannah Fletcher, drives the extended family to flee to the West. They are soon joined by Heppie Bingham's beau George and his brother, Ned, who bring news that the Binghams are being pursued by cronies of Hannah's attacker. Even after they fight off that onslaught, poverty, bad weather, and Hannah's frightful secret plague their journey. Nursing her battered heart when she hears James Owen took a wife, Jessie accepts Ned's offer of marriage. But a stop on the trail holds surprises that launch Jessie into a bewildering tangle of values, emotions, and high adventure.
Marsha Ward has a talent for bringing you right into the story and making you feel like you're experiencing what the characters are experiencing. In this book, there are some downright nasty characters and Ward does an excellent job of making you want to beat them yourself. I was outraged by some of their actions and had to remind myself it wasn't actually happening to me.
Ward has such an authentic flair to her writing that I felt like I was reading something from an author back in the 1870s. She has a vast knowledge of this time period and place and it lends realism to this story.
Some ugly things happen in this book and there is some harsh/profane language so it may not be suitable for all readers, but Ward weaves an interesting and realistic tale of life after the Civil War and definitely makes an impression with Trail of Storms.
To learn more about Marsha Ward and her other books visit her website.