Today, I’m reviewing one of my old favorites.
Julie Garwood, one of the reigning queens of romance has hit a home run with the book For the Roses. She has created a wonderful novel which begins in New York City in 1860. There we meet a gang of young boys who are orphans or misfits. There’s Adam, the eldest, a runaway slave; Douglas, a pickpocket, Cole, the tough one and Travis, the youngest. The four boys have turned to each other in rough times, while living in the streets and figure their future won’t be much smoother. That is until they find a basket someone threw in the trash. Inside is a baby girl. The boys decide then and there to become the Clayborne brothers and to adopt this baby as their little sister. What they want most is a better life for her. Fast forward several years and Mary Rose, their little sister, is now a woman, breathtakingly beautiful and as kind as she is attractive. Besides winning the hearts of everyone in their small, western town of Blue Belle, Mary Rose soon wins the heart of Harrison, a lawyer from Scotland. What the Clayborne family doesn’t know is that Harrison has a hidden agenda and what he reveals to the family, and to Mary Rose in particular will change them all forever. Added to this drama is Adam’s misfortune to be charged with the murder of his former slave master. With plenty of thrills, a couple of gunfights, a murder trial and lots of romance, For the Roses is a great story about love, family and the ties that bind us to one another.
If you love historical romance, or any of Garwood’s other novels, give For the Roses a try. Just be warned, it’s the first in a series, and once you get hooked on the stories of the Clayborne family, there is no turning back!
Originally posted with Writers News Weekly in 2009. Revised and posted in 2016.