Julie Garwood is the author of numerous New York Times bestsellers, including Fire and Ice, Shadow Music, Shadow Dance, Murder List, Killjoy, Mercy, Heartbreaker, Ransom, and Come the Spring. There are more than thirty-six million copies of her books in print.
When a gang of New York orphans discovers baby Mary Rose inside a picnic basket in a trash bin, they travel to Montana to establish a more suitable home for their new charge. Headed up by an escaped slave and peopled with would-be juvenile delinquents, the family that results is unique, to say the least. But it works for 19 years‘and then Harrison MacDonald appears, sent by an English nobleman to reclaim the long lost Mary Rose. Filled with humor and appealing characters and neatly punctuated with letters to the absent "Mama Rose," Garwood's (Prince Charming, Pocket Bks., 1994) lively and charming romance is essential to most romance collections.
In 1879, British lawyer Harrison MacDonald is on a mission to find the long-lost daughter of his employer, the powerful industrialist Lord Elliott. His search takes him from London to the majestic mountains of Montana, where he finds Mary Rose Clayborne, a breathtaking beauty with four tough brothers. Harrison infiltrates the family by playing on Mary Rose's generosity, but instead of uncovering whoever kidnapped Mary Rose as an infant, he finds a loud and argumentative, though warm and caring, family. Harrison fights his growing desire for Mary Rose but fails, and soon the two are married. When Harrison confesses the truth behind his charade, the bride feels betrayed by her new husband, but follows him to England to meet her father and to snare the real kidnapper. Even Garwood's more loyal fans may be dissatisfied with her lifeless narrative and slow pacing here, as well as with the endless parade of new secondary characters. The only saving grace is the outrageous behavior of the heroine and her siblings, as wild as the Old West in which they live. Doubleday Book Club main selection. (Sept.)