Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Marrying Off Morgan McBride by Amy Barry
Series: The McBrides of Montana #2
Published by Berkley on May 30, 2023
Genres: Historical Fiction, Western Romance
Amazon, Audible, Libro.fm, Barnes & Noble, Apple
As the oldest of the McBride siblings, Morgan had to be protector and shepherd since Ma died and Pa ran off. It hasn't always been easy, especially when his heart longs to roam on the trail. But now that his brother Kit is married and settled, the time is right for Morgan to leave Buck's Creek. Little does he know that his hellcat of a little sister Junebug is dead set on keeping him at home and getting more help around the house - all with one honest advertisement in The Matrimonial News.
Epiphany Hopgood has always had a gift for doing the exact wrong thing. She's too tall, too loud, too opinionated, and too contrary for her family and community. Staring down the barrel of spinsterhood, she and her grandmother answer a seemingly straightforward ad for a bride.
Ever since I spotted the Tess LeSue series set on the Oregon Trail and the start of this one under her Amy Barry name with mail order brides, I’ve been meaning to try this author’s books. I finally made the time and I was not disappointed. The blend of humor and history leaps out and takes the reader on a flirty and fun romp through the Montana hills.
Marrying Off Morgan McBride is the second in the McBrides of Montana series. I read it out of order and it stood alone just fine. That said, I will be going back for Kit and Maddie’s book if for no other reason than to get Junebug’s busy little sister matchmaking antics, all to get some more women around the place helping with chores and getting her pesky older brothers off her case.
Oh yes, Junebug is definitely the star of the piece. She’s a precocious fourteen and can think circles around all her big, boisterous brothers. I had a good time with her orchestrating a bride (who can cook, mind you) for her oldest brother Morgan and later, like Pip, and want to help her just as much. Oh sure, Junebug is out for her own gain- she doesn’t like doing chores and definitely not for her beastly brothers and she really doesn’t want Morgan to up and leave back to his cowboy life- but, she’s good hearted and wants women who are good for her brother and for a sister for Junebug to apply. She gets just the right gal when Epiphany Hopgood responds to her ad.
Morgan, like the rest of the McBrides is big and buff, but he’s nursing his pain from having his mother grow sick and die and his alcoholic no-good pa running out on the family. Morgan came back to keep a death-bed promise to ma by raising his siblings and now he wants to be free of responsibility to get on with his life on the trail. Or so he thinks, but Epiphany is a sore temptation and slowly his heart has been changing. Family and home aren’t the burden they once were. Can he figure out that Vivacious and bold Pip is his match before he pushes her away for good.
I loved the frolic and country charm of this one, but I was also taken with the depth Amy Barry dove into the characters of Morgan and Epiphany. They both bring baggage with them and they grow during the course of the story so that a quick attraction is followed by two people who figure out they are what is best for the other. The romance is filtered by the surrounding circumstances of their pasts and the group of family and friends even Junebug’s time as the main figure. But, it all works cohesively into a romping good tale.
In summary, I’m sold after just this one book and want them all in the backlist and the future McBride stories. Historical romance fans who like a light, sassy old west romance should snatch these up.
- Raiders of the Lost Heart by Jo Segura @JoSeguraBooks @BerkleyPub @sophiarose1816 - December 6, 2023
- Snow Place for Murder by Diane Kelly @dianekellybooks @StMartinsPress @sophiarose1816 - November 29, 2023
- 🎧 The Sunshine Club by Carolyn Brown #CarolynBrown @brit_pressley #BrillianceAudio #LoveAudiobooks #KindleUnlimited🎧 @sophiarose1816 - November 22, 2023