Sunday, November 16, 2014

Joan Johnston -- Texas Woman

Joan Johnston -- Texas Woman

Rated: ♥ ♥ ♥ . ♥   {3.80}
Action: ♠♠♠.♠ / Emotion: ♣♣♣♣♣ / Romance: ♥♥♥♥ / Sensuous: ♦.♦ / Suspense: ♠♠
Action: 3.5 / Emotion: 5.0 / Romance: 4.0 / Sensuous: 1.5 / Suspense: 2.0  //  Historical Flavor: 4.5 // Laughter: 0 // Tears: 4 / Teary: 2

Setting:       The Republic of Texas
Era:             1844
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Joan Johnston is a favorite author because she is such a gifted storyteller, therefore, it was no surprise that Texas Woman, the third and final book of The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy was an enjoyable read.   However, this was not the best book of the trilogy.   Sure Johnston filled the story with the usual exciting action scenes, added a smidgen of suspense, and threw in quite a bit of romance, but, oh my goodness, it took forever to even come to like the heroine.

Johnston opened the book with the same great prologue that was found in the two previous books of the series.   And if one had not just read the books back to back, they would have been drawn into the story just as quickly as in the previous two books.
His eldest son would be named Sloan.   Sloan would be strong and brave, a proud, capable heir to take Rip's place.   Bayleigh would be Rip's surety.   He would be the educated one, bred to be a loyal and steadfast help to his elder brother.   Rip's youngest son would be named Creighton.   Creighton would be the child of Rip's heart, the child he played with and indulged and lavished with his love.   Creighton and would be fiery-tempered and bold, demanding everything the Texas frontier had to offer a man, and getting it.

Unfortunately, Amelia gave Rip three daughters.   That did not deter Rip Stewart.   He named the eldest Sloan, the second Bayleigh, and the youngest Creighton, and set about to make his dreams come true.   (page 1)
However, if one had just finished reading the first two books of the series (Frontier Woman and Comanche Woman), it might be with reticence that they would open this book because the heroine, Sloan Stewart, was just not that likable in these first two books.   But then, maybe Johnston was going to reveal where Sloan was coming from -- to show readers the demons she was dealing with and win readers over.

It wasn't until page 118 that Sloan's actions came across as admirable and there was hint that, okay, maybe now she will be likable.   After all, shouldn't readers like the heroine?   But it was impossible to like Sloan -- mostly because of the way she treated her son -- until page 280.   That is a really long time to disapprove of the heroine.

What was it that Sloan was doing to drive the reader nuts?   There were several things.

First, Sloan believed that she was her father's daughter and was absolutely, positively not a coward.
If there is one thing Rip had instilled in her from the day she was born, it was courage.   She was his brave girl.   She was his strong one.   She must never be afraid.   She must face her fears and conquer them.   To show vulnerability was to be weak.   To show weakness was to lose everything.   She knew what she was.   And she was no coward.   (Sloan, page 64)
Never has a woman displayed such cowardly behavior.   Ever since Sloan learned she had been betrayed by Antonio Guerrero (in Frontier Woman), she began acting cowardly.   There is nothing more cowardly than a woman who will not take a chance on loving -- not only a man, but her own son -- all because she might be hurt in the end.   She is going to be hurt whether she acknowledges her love for Cruz and Cisco or not.   Sloan is wearing a great big "I'm a coward" sign on the steel barriers she erected around her heart.

Second, Sloan lies to herself if she believes she was going to Cruz Guerrero's hacienda because she had no where else to go.   Sure Sloan explains why she choose to go to Cruz's house when she had a rip roaring fight with her bullheaded father and slammed out of Three Oaks, but we all know the truth.   How many times do women find excuses to bump into their soul mate after they meet him.   Yes, it would have been crowded at Golden Valley (Long Quiet and Bay's home) and she would have been in the way at Lion's Dare (Creed and Cricket's home), but everyone knows she would have been welcomed in both of her sisters' homes.   And much as she denied it to herself, Sloan was attracted to Cruz.

Third, Sloan's vacillation about her feelings for Cruz nearly drove one up the wall.   Oh my word!   It was like readers were on a hill watching Sloan with a daisy, pulling the petals from the flower, saying, "I want him.   I want him not.   I want him.   I want him not."   And then she picked up another daisy, and kept pulling more petals.
Completely unnerved by her body's tingling reaction to his touch and the husky sound of his voice, Sloan sought some way to break the growing spell between them.   (Sloan, page 80)

There was a rightness about the feel of her body aligned with his.   But the pure, wanton desire that spiraled through her was a threat she wasn't ready to meet.   (Sloan, page 90)

She knew what it would mean if she succumbed to his demands.   She did not want to be his wife.   She did not want to give control of her life to another man.   How could her body respond so treacherously to his caress?   (Sloan, page 90)

"I don't want to be your wife, Cruz."   . . .   "Your brother would always stand between us.   Even if he didn't, we both want our own way too much for us ever to be able to get along.   I'll never agree to leave Three Oaks . . . And you're bound to Dolorosa.   So you see, there really isn't any hope for this marriage."   (Sloan, page 90)
So while Sloan is racing through the book, being strong-willed, determined to do things her way, determined to thwart all of Cruz's actions to find their way to a happily ever after, Cruz is relentless in his determination to make Sloan his.   Never has a hero had to work so hard to convince the woman he loves that he will not betray her . . . that he will love her forevermore.   Sloan was so resistant for so long, it was impossible not to think, 'what does Cruz see in Sloan?'   Why doesn't he just threw in the cards and find someone who isn't so much trouble?   For Pete's Sake, Cruz waited four long years to claim Sloan after she made an agreement with him to raise her son.   An agreement, by the way, that Sloan didn't plan to honor.

To be quite honest, Sloan's voice was much stronger than Cruz's during the telling of this story.   As Sloan was dealing with her issues, Cruz just kept steadfastly pursuing Sloan.

Maybe Johnston was not able to give Cruz a bigger voice during the telling of his story because she inserted a mini secondary romance in the story between Luke Summers and Refugia Adela Maria Tomasita Hidalgo, Cruz's ward.   And while one could not help but want to read Luke's story (after meeting him in the first two books), the way it was told left much to be desired.   Johnston never told readers how Luke's personality developed.   Why there was such sadness in his eyes.   Yes, she gave us a sketchy background about how he knew he was the son of Rip Stewart and why he resented his father, but the feelings, the details, the angst was missing.

Seventeen year old Tomasita was a very important secondary character in the telling of Cruz and Sloan's story.   Tomasita was raised in the Convent of the Sacred Heart in Madrid, Spain and believed that she was betrothed to Cruz when he took her from the convent to his home, Rancho Dolorosa.   Rather than telling readers about Tomasita's story and how she came to fall in love with Luke (in rich, emotional detail), Tomasita was used as a tool to show Sloan a parallel to her own story and to finally "see the light" about her chance for love with Cruz and Cisco.

Tomasita was a beautiful, meek, submissive, young thing that was the perfect wife for Cruz -- in the eyes of his stern, overbearing mother, Doña Lucia Esmeralda Sandoval de Guerrero.   Johnston did an excellent job of painting a picture of the world's most horrible mother-in-law.   Doña Lucia was determined to get rid of Sloan so Cruz would marry Tomasita.   Johnston has a way of inserting secondary characters into her books that really add a rich flavor to the story and Doña Lucia is one of those well-developed characters.
Cruz must marry Tomasita.   She was of noble blood.   She was pure.   And she was as mallable as butter softened by the sun.   Doña Lucia would settle for nothing less in her son's wife.   (Doña Lucia, page 125)

She would be first in her own home, first with her son -- no matter what steps she had to take to accomplish it.   (Doña Lucia, page 129)
Another important secondary character was Rip Stewart.   Sloan probably argued with Rip because they were so much alike.   And although Rip had no idea how to show his daughters demonstrative love, he proved that, in the end, he only wanted the best for those daughters.   Rip may have stayed mostly in the background of Sloan's story, but when he was present, he came across as the bigger-than-life man that he was.

Sloan's sisters and their husbands made cameo appearances in Cruz and Sloan's story.   While it was nice to see what was happening to the happily ever after of {1} Frontier Woman's Jarrett and Cricket, and {2} Comanche Woman's Long Quiet and Bay, it was sad that none of these characters really had a role in this book.   It seems that once Johnston tells a story, those characters are relegated to the back burner.

Nevertheless, the story was entertaining, engrossing and easy to read.   As is usual in a Joan Johnston book, readers found valid reasons for staying immersed Texas Woman, the third book of The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy. {1} Cruz Almicar Guerrero, a handsome hero that was strong enough to fight for what he wanted.   And what he wanted was Sloan.   {2} Sloan Stewart, the weakest aspect of the book because she came across as unlikeable way too often during the telling of her story.   Nevertheless, she was an intelligent, strong, determined heroine.   {3} The inclusion of plenty of action scenes to keep the story moving at a steadfast pace.   {4} Sloan may have been unlikeable, but she managed to bring readers to tears several times, proving Johnston could keep readers emotionally invested in this book.   {5} The element of romance was strong throughout the story as Cruz struggled to convince Sloan she was the one for him.   {6} A slight aura of suspense invaded the story as Cruz became involved in political shenanigans.   {7} The inclusion of several well-placed love scenes added some spice and sensuality to the story.   {8} Historical facts and figures and the setting added a rich historical flavor to the story.   {9} Memorable and well-written secondary characters added greater depth to the story: {a} Luke Summers; {b} Tomasita Hidalgo; {c} Doña Lucia Guerrero; {d} Sir Giles Chapman; {e} Alejandro Sanchez; {f} Betsy Randolph; {g} Cisco Guerrero; {h} Louis Randolph; and, of course, {i} Rip Stewart.   This is the second read of this book for me.   It probably won't be the last re-read simply because Johnston tells such a great story and the first two books of the series are worth re-reading.
{Not the best review!   Kind of just gave up on it!}
--Vonda M. Reid (Friday, October 17, 2014 : 5:12 p.m)     [343]

Books In The Series: "The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy"
# Date Title Hero Heroine
01.08-1988Frontier WomanJarrett CreedCreighton "Cricket" Stewart, youngest sister
02.04-1989Comanche WomanLong Quite / Walker CoburnBayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart, middle sister
03.10-1989Texas WomanCruz Almicar GuerreroSloan Stewart, eldest sister
  secondary:Luke SummersRefugia Adela Maria Tomasita Hidalgo

Characters Found In "Texas Woman"
Character Description
Don Cruz Almicar Guerrero[Hero] tall, lean Castilian Spaniard; Antonio's elder brother; corded muscles in arms (3) implacable strength (4) blue eyes; arrogant (9) thick black hair (11) strong; quick; hard, sinewy body; fierce eyes; aristocratic features; intransigence in jutting chin rent by a shallow cleft; daring Spanish cavalier; brute strength; iron will (12) calloused fingertips (14) unyielding dominating stance; icy blue eyes revealed nothing (22) bullheaded man (23) descended from royal Castilian stock (25) the Republic recruited him as a double agent (32) The Hawk: British code name (33) forbidding face; fierce as a hawk; handsome; deep blue eyes crowned by slashing black brows; proud cheekbones; blade of nose; full lips; slightly cleft chin; kindhearted (44) strong; well formed; eyes as blue as the Texas sky; crow-wing black hair; attractive; arrogant; demanding; used to giving orders and having them obeyed (51) muscular shoulders; flat belly; hard, proud lines of his body; blatant masculinity; white teeth (74) steely hardness; fair patron (129) whirls of thick black hair covered his bronze chest (171)
Sloan Stewart[Heroine] full breasts; slender waist; wide, child-bearing hips (4) future heir to Three Oaks; trained by Rip to make calm, rational decisions (6) calluses adorned her fingertips and palms of her small hands; her fingernails were broken to the quick and grimy; wore planter's clothing, gingham shirt, osnaburg trousers, and Wellington boots; waist-length sable-brown hair was her one vanity (6) responsibilities as overseer of Three Oaks (12) heart-shaped face; large, intelligent brown eyes topped by delicately arched brows; short, straight nose; angled cheekbones leading to her confident chin; full, inviting pink lips (12) freckled cheekbones (14) 22/23-y-o (16) large, liquid-brown eyes; an inner fire that burned far more brightly than in any other woman Cruz had ever known (18) strong-willed woman (23) loved the land (32) 5'4" (76) courageous; strength of will; intelligent (154) independent, determined to do everything her own way (197) beautiful young woman with fire in her eyes (283)
. . . . . .
Luke Summers[Secondary Hero] took part in the capture of Alejandro; drew women like a Texas marsh drew mallards; young Texas Ranger lieutenant; tall; rangy; dark brown hair was streaked with blonde from the year he had spent at hard labor in a Mexican prison (15) had been captured at the Battle of Mier; high cheekbones; narrow nose over a wide, full mouth; hazel eyes that looked gold or green at various times, depending on his mood; 22/23-y-o; eyes bespoke a life filled with some unutterable sadness; magic with a lariat; incredibly perceptive (16) flat brimmed hat; lanky young man; open-throated dark blue linsey-woolsey shirt; fringed buckskin trousers; knee-high moccasins; muscular thighs (46) did not look like Rip; whipcord lean; strong, square jaw; must look like his mother, who had to be beautiful (64) gold-flecked hazel eyes; tall, lean body was slouched deceptively and an easy-going, loose-limbed posture (120) has same birthmark as Rip (195) 23-y-o (232)
Senorita Refugia Adela Maria 'Tomasita' Hidalgo[Secondary Heroine] young woman Cruz brought to Rancho Dolorosa from Spain (28) unbelievably beautiful (31) unresisting obedience to Lucia's will; very young; had lived nowhere but El Convento del Sagrado Carozón, under the strict censure of the nuns; smoldering streak of rebellion (36) her father and Cruz's father signed a betrothal contract when she was a child (40) 17-y-o; slender arms; silky ebony hair; heart-shaped face; vivid, sapphire-blue eyes; possessed the joy in life, and the innocent belief in happily ever after, that had been stolen from Sloan (41) natural ebullience (42) milk white skin (75) beautiful blue eyes; winsome smile; as tall as Cruz; a distant cousin; royal Castilian blood flows in her veins (76) lush black lashes (187)
. . . . . .
Ana[Rare Appearance] Guerrero servant (42)
Mother María de los Angeles[No Appearance] head of El Convento del Sagrado Carozón; harsh (43)
Ambrosio de Arocha[One Appearance] showed interest in Tomasita at the fandango; fine man; wealthy rancher; recently widowed (95) doted on first wife; 46-y-o (232) thin, erect, very stern-looking man; distinctive, dark eyes; had a pointed beard and a thin mustache; gray-haired (248)
August[One Appearance] had a room at back of Three Oaks stables (335)
Joaquín Carvajal[One Appearance] showed interest in Tomasita at the fandango; fine man; wealthy rancher; looking for a well-bred wife (95) 22-y-o (232)
Sir Giles Chapman[Secondary Character] Cruz's British contact; short, rotund Englishmen dressed foppishly in bright colored silks and satins; adopted the foolish clothes as a disguise; together with his bloodshot eyes and florid jowls, they had kept many a man from discovering the shrewd brain that resided beneath his shiny bald pate; crisp British accent; authoritative (33)
Charity[No Appearance] Luke's mother (194)
Bayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart Coburn[Rare Appearances] [Heroine of Comanche Woman] Rip's middle daughter; stolen by marauding Comanches; spent three years living in a Quohadi village as a Comanche war chief's prized possession; rescued by Long Quiet (24) soft-spoken; had core of iron down her back (47)
Long Quiet / Walker Coburn[Rare Appearance] [Hero of Comanche Woman] half-bread Comanche; Bay's husband (23) gray eyes (347)
Whipp Coburn[No Appearance] Long Quiet and Bay's son (73)
Creighton "Cricket" Stewart Creed[Rare Appearances] [Heroine of Frontier Woman] ran off and married Jarrett Creed (22) Sloan's best friend; pregnant with second child (45)
Jarrett Creed[Rare Appearance] [Hero of Frontier Woman] Texas Ranger; married Cricket (22) handsome (347)
Miranda "Muffin" Creed[One Appearance] Creed and Cricket's daughter (368)
Jesse Creed[No Appearance] Creed and Cricket's first child (45) nearly 2-y-o (347)
Father Vicente Delgado[One Appearance] priest who lived in Gonzales; married Cruz and Sloan (159) benevolent bearded face (165)
Esteban[One Appearance] Guerrero vaquero; Sloan sat with his wife as she birthed child (285)
Felipe[Rare Appearances] member of band of bandidos; older, rail-thin, leather-faced man (136)
Frank[One Appearance] Texas Ranger; escorted Sloan back home to Three Oaks from San Antonio (16)
Ana María Guerrero[One Appearance] Cruz and Sloan's daughter (367)
Antonio "Tonio" Guerrero[No Appearance] Cruz's brother; Sloan's former lover, bore him a bastard son (3) plotted with the Mexican government to overthrow the Republic (4) charming, rakish smile that tilted up at one corner more than the other; dark eyes sparkling with devilry (5) low, smooth, coaxing voice; younger son of a Spanish Don (6) coldly and calculatedly used Sloan to carry messages (7) legacy of selfishness and greed (18) mother's favorite son (39)
Francisco "Cisco" Guerrero[Secondary Character] Sloan and Antonio's 3-y-o son (5) "a child born of deceit" (29) incredibly soft skin; chubby legs; spoke a mixture of English and Spanish child words (30) attacked by a renegade Comanche and nearly killed (31) sable locks (42) Diablito: Cruz's nickname (42) had Cruz's blue eyes, same noble nose; cleft in a chin was a miniature of Cruz's; had Antonio's smile, one side of his mouth tilted higher than the other (96) blue eyes; curly brown hair; high cheekbones; cleft chin; the innocent face of a child who had borne the brunt of her anger (280)
Juan Carlos Guerrero[No Appearance] Cruz's father (21) passed away three summers ago (25)
Doña Lucia Esmeralda Sandoval de Guerrero[Major Secondary Character] Cruz's mother (5) patrician cheekbones; hair parted and held in its tight bun at her nape, was still black as a raven's wing; body was slim and firm, without the gaunt bony appearance that occurred in many tall women as they aged; her creamy complexion was unwrinkled except for the corners of her eyes; looked more youthful than her 53 years; too young to be a widow whose household would soon be the province of a younger woman (36) harsh (42)
Valeria Guerrero[No Appearance] Cruz's first wife; arranged marriage; comely; compliant; obedient because she had no thoughts of her own; died giving birth to Cruz's stillborn son (18)
Jorge Guitierrez[No Appearance] bandido that ended up hanging in Alejandro's place (144)
General José Joaquin Herrera[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] Mexico's new president, replaced Santa Ana; a man disposed to peace with Texas (217)
President Houston[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] president of the Texas Republic (33)
Ignacio[Rare Appearances] leader of band of bandidos; Mexican; tiny eyes disappeared into the sagging flesh of his cheeks when he grinned; bulging stomach was so huge that even his striped serape couldn't disguise it (135) corpulent face (137) Alejandro's brother (141)
Dr. Anson Jones[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] a man pledged to support Sam Houston's policies favoring annexation, was elected to replace Houston as the next president of the Republic (217)
Josefa[Rare Appearances] Cisco's caretaker (42) heavyset woman (191)
Josey[One Appearance] Texas Ranger; escorted Sloan back home to Three Oaks from San Antonio (16)
Juan[One Appearance] one of Cruz's vaqueros; left behind at Conestogas to bury the dead (133)
Angelique "Angel" LeFevre[Brief Appearance] more beautiful now than she was 4-y-a; scars from wolf attack hardly showed (297) petite, blue-eyed blonde whose golden hair was styled in lovely sausage curls that framed her face and bounced when she moved her head (314)
Beaufort LeFevre[Actual Historical Character / Brief Appearance] former American chargé to Texas (225) charming Louisiana drawl (322)
Luis[One Appearance] one of Cruz's vaqueros; left behind at Conestogas to bury the dead (133)
María[One Appearance] curandera; healer (271) wizened old woman, who wore ragged clothes and generally smelled of the poultices she devised (273)
Paco[Rare Appearances] Guerrero servant; brought message to hacienda about broken down wagon (128)
Miguel Padilla[Rare Appearances] Cruz's foreman (128) rangy vaquero; face as ageless as a mountain peak, eroded by wind and weather; wore spurred winged boots and rawhide chaparejos of the vaquero (282) wily; dark brown eyes (284)
James Knox Polk[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] a virtual unknown; of Tennessee, a friend of Sam Houston's and a man in favor of westward expansion, was elected to replace President John Tyler (217)
Ramón[One Appearance] young boy riding with bandidos; pockmarked face (140)
Betsy Randolph[Secondary Character] parents killed by Comanche; blond hair (118) 5-y-o; from Pennsylvania (138)
Elizabeth "Lizzie" Randolph[No Appearance] Louis's wife; Betsy named for her (240)
Franklin Randolph[No Appearance] Betsy's cousin; 9-y-o; from Pennsylvania; taken by Comanche (138)
Jenny Randolph[No Appearance] Betsy's sister; killed in lightening storm (253)
Jeremiah Randolph[No Appearance] Betsy's cousin; 10-y-o; from Pennsylvania; taken by Comanche (138)
Joseph Randolph[No Appearance] Betsy's father; from Pennsylvania; killed by Comanche raid (138)
Louis Randolph[One Appearance] Betsy's uncle (240) a big man; dressed like a farmer in a dark gray homespun shirt, baggy denim overalls, and short, heavy black boots, all of which had seen a great deal of where; had shaggy light brown hair and ears that stuck out from his head like handles on a sugar bowl; brown eyes sparkling with good humor (277) heavily calloused hands; gentle touch; deep, sincere bass voice that rumbled in his broad chest (278)
Susanna Randolph[No Appearance] Betsy's mother; from Pennsylvania; killed by Comanche raid (138)
Alejandro Sanchez[Secondary Character] grizzled-faced Mexican bandido in San Antonio jail (3) wide silver and turquoise bracelet on his right wrist; killed Antonio 4-y-a; stealing Guerrero horses and cattle and raping women of the pueblo; hostile eyes; cruel smile; sharp-boned face (4) treacherous; cunning (11) row of crooked teeth beneath bushy mustache (224) no conscience; didn't fight fair, didn't fight clean (225)
Sancho[One Appearance] Guerrero mestizo servant (270)
Stephen[One Appearance] slave at Three Oaks; managed Rip's household since Amelia's death (30)
Amelia Stewart[No Appearance] chosen by Rip to marry because she was the only daughter in a nearby Scots family of seven healthy children (1)
Rip Stewart[Major Secondary Character] Sloan's father; owner of cotton plantation along the Brazos River; dreamed of having 3 sons; married Amelia (1) recovered from his stroke; must use a cane to get around; pushes himself too hard; ornery as ever (16) flinty gray eyes; auburn hair, tinged now with silver, fell in careless hanks over his brow (21) stern gaze; stroke made it awkward for him to rise from a chair with grace (22) square jaw (25) as hard and uncompromising as the land he had fought to tame (32) giant of a man whose hand trembled on his cane (56) a massive, barrel-chested man; strong, square jaw (63)
Rafael Summers[One Appearance] Luke and Tomasita's son (368)
Uncle Billy[One Appearance] old man; Sloan left in charge of field hands (45) burly Negro (63)

Locations, Settings Found In "Texas Woman"
Location / Organization Description
SettingRepublic of Texas
El Convento del Sagrado Carozónthe Convent of the Sacred Heart; in Madrid: where Senorita Refugia Adela Maria Tomasita Hidalgo was raised (36)
Ferguson's Hotelin San Antonio; where Josey and Frank were having lunch; where Cruz stayed the night (16)
Golden ValleyLong Quiet and Bay's home (57)
Gonzalesprimarily Spanish-speaking Texas town; northeast of San Antonio along the Guadalupe River; where one of the few priests to be found in the Republic was known to be (158)
Lion's DareCreed and Cricket's home (57)
Rancho Dolorosaroyal Spanish decree granting land in Texas to Guerrero family (23) southeast of Three Oaks along the Brazos River; the largest cattle ranch in Texas; thousands of hectares of land (25)
San Antoniowhere Alejandro Sanchez was in jail (3)
Three OaksRip Stewart's plantation (6)

"Texas Woman" Quotations (that re-tell the story)
13"And though I was often tempted, I did not ask of you my soul's desire.   I did not take from you that for which my body hungered.   I waited.   And I hunted down my brother's murderer."   (Cruz)
18she possessed a mind and a will that challenged his own.   (Cruz)
19he had convinced himself that once he and Sloan were living together as husband and wife, once she was carrying his child, those issues would resolve themselves.   (Cruz)
26She refused to take the chance of falling in love again.   Love made her foolish.   Love had made her lose control of her life.   (Sloan)
31It was better, she had decided, not to love at all.   It seemed the only way to avoid the pain that seemed irrevocably to come along with loving.   (Sloan)
31You can't keep ignoring the fact you've got a child," Rip continued.   "When you're as old as I am, you realize you don't get a second chance in this life.   If I had a son out there somewhere, you can believe he'd know I cared about him."   (Rip)
31She would never allow herself to love him.   And she could never be the willing and obedient wife she was sure he expected her to become.   (Sloan)
37Since his father's death, he had found himself in almost constant conflict with his mother.   (Cruz)
47Patience was something he had learned young, right along with disappointment.   (Luke)
47She felt an affinity to the young ranger she simply couldn't explain.   (Sloan)
50Luke looked into Sloan's chocolate-brown eyes and saw a kindred soul.   She knew the bitterness of betrayal as he did.   She trusted no one; nor did he.   She was alone, as he was.   (Luke)
51"Did you ever think maybe you could use someone to lean on once in a while, someone to share your troubles and lighten the load?"   (Luke)
52Luke felt a well of anger rising inside him and struggled to subdue it.   He shouldn't care what Sloan Stewart did with her life, but he couldn't seem to distance himself from any woman in distress.   A legacy from childhood, he thought with disgust, when his mother had needed someone to rescue her from the mire and he had been too young to help.   (Luke)
55His recent close brush with death had created a fierce need in him to ensure the continuity of Three Oaks. He had counted it nothing short of a miracle when Luke Summers had arrived on his doorstep that morning and announced, "I'm your son."   (Rip)
56"I won't share Three Oaks."   (Sloan)
57Rip had made her what she was -- a woman with a man's dreams and capabilities -- and there was nowhere she could be herself except here at Three Oaks.   (Sloan)
60Rip simply could not take Three Oaks from her now.   Not when it was all she had left.   (Sloan)
73She knew it was lunacy to let mere pride stand in the way of help, but there it was, and she found it an insurmountable barrier.   (Sloan)
79Sloan would have laughed at the absurdity of the situation, except she was afraid she might become hysterical.   Cruz's authoritarian announcement rankled, but at the same time, she could hardly defy him and return to Three Oaks under the circumstances.   The feeling of being trapped returned.   (Sloan)
81It wounded him to know that she had loved his brother in a way she could never love him.   (Cruz)
83For years he had lived in the belief that someday she would come to him. She was finally here. And she would never be leaving Dolorosa -- or him -- again.   (Cruz)
92"You're a man.   And a man will say or do whatever is necessary to get what he wants from a woman."   (Sloan)
97She felt the invisible bond that stretched between them and shut her eyes against its power.   (Sloan)
102Sloan felt a queer tightness in her chest.   She recognized it as jealousy.   She had told Cruz she didn't want to be his wife.   Only now that she saw him with Tomasita, she realized she didn't want him to be some other woman's husband, either.   . . .   Either she wanted to be Cruz's wife or she didn't.   Which was it?   (Sloan)
106"No one would dare to provoke me the way you do."   (Cruz)
115It never occurred to Sloan to wait for Cruz, because she was used to doing things for herself, used to taking action were action was warranted.   Nor did she consider what Cruz's reaction would be to her precipitous journey.   It simply didn't matter.   (Sloan)
149"There's a price for everything," she said.   "I'm not so heartless as you think, Cruz.   I have not denied my son a mother's love and felt nothing."   (Sloan)
154She wasn't sure which distressed or more, the fear of dealing with Cruz woman to man or the fear that she would be ceding him control of her life.   (Sloan)
154She was afraid he would make her feel . . . things . . . she didn't want to feel ever again.   (Sloan)
160The hacendado looked grimly satisfied.   The woman looked grimly resigned.   They both looked grimly determined.   (Father Delgado)
184"I don't think any of us really knows what we're capable of doing until the need arises.   Then I think we sometimes surprise ourselves."   (Sloan)
188He wanted her -- in a way he had never wanted another woman.   There was something about her that shook him up inside.   (Luke)
195Sloan had never thought of her father as an ordinary person with ordinary flaws.   He had always been someone larger than life, the bedrock of Three Oaks, the stubborn, opinionated head of the household.
Now she realized he was only a man, one who had made a terrible mistake once upon a time. It was a mistake he clearly regretted and one that would likely haunt him the rest of his life.   (Sloan)
195"Seems to me your marrying Cruz would be the perfect answer to all our problems," Rip said.   "You would be mistress of Dolorosa , and I could leave Three Oaks to Luke.   Everything would be even all around."   (Rip)
196"Except I don't want Dolorosa.   I want Three Oaks," Sloan retorted.   (Sloan)
196"We don't always get everything we want."   (Rip)
196Perhaps she was going to plow bullheadedly forward in the wrong direction just to get her own way.   (Rip)
197For the first time in his life, he didn't know what to do.   (Rip)
202What would happen if she stayed with him?   She had to make him understand before it was too late how important it was to her to make her own decisions.   (Sloan)
203By now she should be used to it -- betrayal from those you loved most.   She glanced sideways at Cruz.   //   Was it any wonder she didn't want to put her life in his hands?   Someday he would betray her too.   (Sloan)
205"I can envision no future that does not include you"   (Cruz)
205"I can't promise you anything.   I may not be able to give you what you want."   (Sloan)
207"I'm not like Tomasita, Cruz.   I could never let you make my choices for me.   I make my own decisions.   I always will."   (Sloan)
221She was afraid to love him; she was afraid she already did.   (Sloan)
243She did not think she could bear it if she found out Cruz was a liar, just like his brother.   (Sloan)
245It wasn't rational, but there was nothing reasonable about her deep-seeded fear that those she cared for most were destined to be torn from her.   (Sloan)
251"If that was all I could ever have, I was willing to take the risk to have it.   When I gave myself to him, I thought he wanted to marry me.   I did not understand that he did not feel the same way about me as I did him."   (Tomasita)
260It was only now that he had betrayed her that she realized she loved Cruz Guerrero with a depth of soul and spirit she had never imagined possible when his brother had broken her heart.   Though that wound had somehow healed, she was certain this one never would.   (Sloan)
269"I cannot explain myself now.   You will have to trust me."   (Cruz)
287"Please do not offer me hope where there is none."   (Tomasita)
292He had never before comprehended how much this woman needed a position beside him -- in more places than at the dining table and in bed.   (Cruz)
293For now he had to learn to share with her, to include her in the parts of his life that he had hitherto kept separate.   (Cruz)
294How could she love him and distrust him at the same time?   (Sloan)
312she had been given another chance to be a wife and mother   (Sloan)
335Sloan had always considered herself brave, but she thought maybe she was about to make the most courageous decision of her life.   The decision not only to love Cruz, but to trust his love to be constant no matter what challenges they faced over the years to come.   (Sloan)
350"Nothing can tear us apart," he said, his voice hoarse with feeling, "so long as we are determined to be together."   (Cruz)

"Joan Johnston -- Texas Woman" Review and Information Links
Rated Posted Site Notes, Comments, Etc.
----Joan Johnston's WebsiteAuthor
----Joan Johnston's FacebookAuthor
. . . . . . . . .. . .
4.46 average{35 reviews}Amazonas of: November 15, 2014
4.19 average{21 ratings}Barnes & Nobleas of: November 15, 2014
----Fantastic FictionList of Joan Johnston's Books
----Fict FactList of Books In The "Sisters of the Lone Star" Trilogy
----Fiction DBList of Joan Johnston's Books
3.99 average{424 ratings}Good Readsas of: November 15, 2014
3.57 average{21 ratings}Library Thingas of: November 15, 2014
80--Mrs. Gigglesmade me laugh out loud at the way she described this book
----Order of BooksList of Joan Johnston's Books
3.90 average{105 ratings}Paperback Swapas of: November 15, 2014
positive--Reviewer's Choice--Sissy Jacobson // detailed synopsis // nice closing // love graphics
5.00 average{2 reviews}Shelfarias of: November 15, 2014
3.8011-16-2014Wolf Bear Does Booksshorter post on Amazon, Fiction DB, Good Reads, Library Thing, Shelfari

♥   Disclaimer:   I Purchased This Book
♥   Very Subjective Rating

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Joan Johnston --- Comanche Woman

Joan Johnston -- Comanche Woman

Rated: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ . ♥   {4.75}
Action: ♠♠♠.♠ / Emotion: ♣♣♣♣♣ / Romance: ♥♥♥♥♥ / Sensuous: ♦♦ / Suspense: ♠♠.♠
Action: 3.75 / Emotion: 5.0 / Romance: 5.0 / Sensuous: 2.0 / Suspense: 2.5  //  Historical Flavor: 4.5 // Laughter: 1 // Tears: 5 / Teary: 3

Setting:       The Republic of Texas / Comanchería / Perote, Mexico
Era:             1843
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Did the most horrible thing with the first review.   I accidentally deleted it.   When I figured out what I had done, I was miserable.   All that work and because of inattention and with the stroke of a few keys -- it was gone forevermore.   So here is the second attempt at reviewing this book.

Comanche Woman, Joan Johnston's second book in The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy, was the best book of the trilogy.   Since Johnston is a favorite author to begin with, it was not surprising that this book was un-put-down-able.   Comanche Woman was an exciting, entertaining, deeply emotional, well-told story that readers who favor Historical Romances that are part of the American West sub-genre will find this book well worth reading.

This book could almost be read as a standalone book because the sisters that star in the other two books of the series, do not spend all that much time on the pages of this book.   However, it is recommended that these books be read in order, because Johnston actually does build the personalities of several recurring characters during the progressive stories of the three Stewart sisters.

Anyone that read the first book of the series, Frontier Woman, would be chomping at the bit to read Comanche Woman -- Long Quiet's and Bayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart's story.   At the end of that book, Bay had been kidnapped by Tall Bear, a Penateka Comanche, who then sold her off to another band of Comanche.   Long Quiet, who had fallen for Bay the first time he saw her, was tasked by Bay's younger sister, Creighton "Cricket" Stewart Creed, to find Bay.
from the moment he'd first seen Bay Stewart in Boston, where she'd been sent to school by her father, she'd held a fascination for him.   (Long Quiet, page 23)
Johnston does an excellent job of including details of Texas history in the story as she begins weaving quite a few different colored threads into the story to give the tapestry of this book a beautifully finished picture.   Comanche Woman opens three years after Bay's kidnapping -- in 1843.   Long Quiet has made his way from Comanchería (where he lives and where he has been searching for Bay) at the request of his best friend, Cricket's husband, Jarrett Creed.   Creed needs Long Quiet to go to Mexico for him with horses and supplies to help aid prisoners tunneling under the walls of Castle San Carlos in Perote, Mexico where the Mexican government had moved the one hundred and fifty prisoners that were captured during the Battle of Mier.

Creed is anxious to help those prisoners because one of them is Luke Summers, the young Texas Ranger that worked under Creed's command.   Creed cannot go to Mexico himself because Cricket is close to delivering their first child.   Long Quiet agrees to perform this task for Creed and then he is faced with two very difficult questions.   The first is from Cricket, asking if he is still looking for Bay.   The second, and more profound, is the one asked by Creed.   Creed asks Long Quiet if he still stood by his choice to live as a Comanche rather than a White Man.
"I've spent a lifetime traveling between Comanchería and the Republic of Texas.   Thanks to Creed's father, I learned a great deal more about the white man's attitudes and ideas when he sent me to school with Creed in Boston.   And I tell you, there can be no peace between the Comanches and the White-eyes."   (Long Quiet, page 7)
The emotional and mental difficulty that Long Quiet faces as he walks between two worlds, belonging to neither, is addressed quite often during the telling of his story.   Johnston used Long Quiet's angst about his heritage to tie readers to him on a deeply emotional level.   As Long Quiet headed back to Comanchería, he happened upon a very young brave, who was drinking in celebration of his first successful raid on white men.   In his drunken youthfulness, the brave told the other warriors in camp about the big secret being kept in his village.   A purple-eyed, red-headed, white woman named Shadow had been living in his village for three years.

As Long Quiet rode north to check out the possibility that "Shadow" may be Bay, the stars aligned (aren't authors really good about aligning stars), so that Long Quiet rescued Many Horses, a Quohadi Comanche, from the grasp of a group of Tankawa warriors (the Comanches' deadliest enemy).   Long Quiet rescued Many Horses in the dead of night and before morning had arrived, Many Horses had made Long Quiet a blood brother.   But when dawn arrived, Many Horses was angry when he saw the curl in Long Quiet's black hair and the gray of his eyes.   And Long Quiet, again, faced the hatred directed at one side of his heritage.
Long Quiet could see the Indian was furious at the discovery that he'd become blood brother to a man who didn't look much like a Comanche.

But I am Comanche!

It was a cry Long Quiet left unvoiced.   (Long Quiet, page 24-25)
Naturally (because authors are so good at aligning the stars), Many Horses just happened to own Shadow, the name given to Bay by the Comanches she lived with for the last three years.   So it was that Long Quiet finally found Bay -- and then had to deal with his heritage issue again.
"I understand the Comanche custom that allows Many Horses to offer . . . to share me with you, and I know what I promised.   But I . . . I really don't wish to . . .   You must understand how unnatural, or wrong such an act would seem to a white woman . . . such as myself.   After all, you're a white man, you --"   (Bay)

"I am a Comanche, a True Human Being.   Do not dare to call me White!"   (Long Quiet, page 54)
It is during the first half of the book, labeled "Part I -- Shadow" that Long Quiet stays in the Comanche village and seeks to win Bay as his own.   Long Quiet is a hero that would melt any woman's heart.
Before him sat a flesh-and-blood woman who set his pulse to pounding and his loins ablaze.   (Long Quiet, page 40)

"I find I like being cared for by you."   (Long Quiet, page 61)

The fact was she did like him, but she didn't understand why.   (Bay, page 62)

he couldn't help thinking he would never have offered this woman to another man -- no matter how great the debt, or how great the honor to be found in such generous giving.   (Long Quiet, page 65)

She'd offered herself to him, but it hadn't been a willing offer, and he found himself reluctant to take what he wanted by force.   (Long Quiet, page 67)

"I would not desire another woman, either, if I had you."   (Long Quiet, page 70)
One thing that Johnston does with great skill is to introduce secondary characters, who are important to the plot of the book, and sometimes play minor roles, but when they walk through the pages of the book, they leap out at you.   One of the supporting characters that Johnston brought to life was Many Horses, a hero in his own right.   Many Horses is very intriguing.   He is all that is strong -- a mighty warrior, a man of integrity, and suffers his own angst as he serves his village as war chief.
"I made you my brother and then did not act as a brother should.   Now I find myself unable to think what I can give you that is a fitting reward."   (Many Horses, page 27)

Many Horses watched with a queer mixture of pride and jealousy the look of admiration for Shadow that he found on his blood brother's face.   . . .   He did not like owing Long Quiet.   (Many Horses, page 41)

Many Horses felt a sinking sensation in his stomach.   He was about to share a highly treasured possession, one he came to recognize as solely his own, and could not shake the feeling of foreboding that descended upon him.   He felt his jaw tighten in determination, aware his pride was forcing him to do a thing his warrior's instincts told him could have terrible consequences.   (Many Horses, page 42)

"I am glad you approve of Shadow.   She shall be yours to serve you in whatever manner you wish, for so long as you are among us."   (Many Horses, page 42)
There were several things about the village where Bay had lived for three years that were a bit off kilter.   First off, there seemed to be no chief.   Second, the medicine man was unusual.   After reading many, many American West Romance Novels that featured the Native American and after watching the tv mini-series, Into The West, it always seemed that the medicine man, the puhakut, was the most spiritual and wisest member of the tribe.   At first, He Decides It, the medicine man, was going to be that man.
It was moments like this that brought home to him how staggering a responsibility it was to be medicine man for the village and to have the power of life and death over those who came to him for advice.   (He Decides It, page 72)
But as the story progressed and Johnston used the medicine man to align the stars so that it was necessary for Shadow to leave the village.   It became obvious that He Decides It was a jealous, manipulative, power hungry man.   Since Many Horses was loved by all and is of such high caliber that he could be the hero of his own romance novel, He Decides It manipulated people and events so that he came across as more powerful and stronger than Many Horses.

One of He Decides It's decrees was that the villagers (except for Many Horses's family) could not speak or look at Shadow, who was declared the basis for Many Horses' puha (power).   So it was that for three years, Bay was, again, on the outside looking in.
There had been no one to talk to, no one with whom to share the ache she felt at being so isolated in the midst of so many.   (Bay, page 33)
Bay had always felt insecure and inferior, having been raised by Rip and having Sloan and Cricket for sisters.   Bay met Jonas Harper while she went to school in Boston and her soft heart zeroed in on him and his kindnesses to her.
In those long-ago days, Jonas had bolstered her meager self-confidence, had protected her from the fears of inadequacy she'd acquired growing up in a home with two outspoken sisters and an overpowering father.   (Bay, page 35)
Bay had spent years dreaming of Jonas coming to save her.   As the story progressed, Bay continued to wound the man who loved her by bringing up Jonas during their tender conversations.   Long Quiet did everything in his power to win Bay over and when he did, it was a bit confusing how one moment Bay was whispering "Jonas" and the next she was in love with Long Quiet.   Maybe that's the problem that occurs when an author has the heroine resisting the hero for so long before she finally admits her feelings for him.

Johnston did a great job of slipping in some very emotional, sensual love scenes that had a bit of sizzle when Long Quiet finally took Bay to his bed.   Apparently Long Quiet was such a good lover, that Bay tumbled into love with him.

But now that Long Quiet and Bay are in love and Bay is forced to leave the village for her safety (thanks to Indian superstition), Johnston must throw a wrench in the works so that she can tell the second half of the story.   Thus, it was that when readers turned to "Part II -- Bay", it was to read that Long Quiet dumped Bay on the steps of Three Oaks and he headed off to Laredo to meet Creed and then off to his home in Comanchería.

Just as Long Quiet was dealing with his issues of being half-Comanche and half-White, Bay was dealing with issues of never being good enough to be her father's daughter.   Rip Stewart's personality was developed to a much greater degree in Comanche Woman than in Frontier Woman.   It was obvious that as Rip aged, he had no idea how to show his daughters any tenderness.   However, Johnston wrote a beautiful scene of unspoken communication between Rip and Bay when she walked into the dining room of Three Oaks when she returned home.

Rip was depicted as more human and likeable as he pressed Bay about marrying Jonas.   Rip, however, was totally oblivious to the fact that Bay was miserable at the loss of the love of her life.   Amazingly for Rip, though, he saw that the Bay that came back from the Comanche had a lot more backbone.   For the first time in her life, she hollered back at Rip.

Johnston is going to have to do some fancy footwork if she expects her readers to like Sloan in her book, Texas Woman -- the last book of the trilogy.   Sloan was not exactly likeable in Frontier Woman and she is even worse in Comanche Woman.   Sloan has become a hardened, bitter, workaholic after giving away her son to the Guerrero family.   (Sloan got pregnant by Antonio Guerrero in Frontier Woman.)   Bay, as the peacemaker and the sister who tries to make everything right, struggles to bring Sloan and her two year old son, Francisco "Cisco" Guerrero, together.

Since Cricket's story has already been told, Johnston leaves her only on the periphery of Bay's story.   It was nice to see that Creed and Cricket were having a baby.   It was also fun to see that Tom and Amy Creed returned to Three Oaks from Tennessee to attend the christening of little Jesse Elizabeth Creed along with their children, five year old Seth and one year old Emily.

Johnston continued to build the awareness between readers and Luke Summers.   After Luke escaped from the Mexican prison, he showed up at Three Oaks and developed a close relationship with Bay -- just as he had developed a relationship with Cricket in Frontier Woman.   Wouldn't it be wonderful if Luke had his own story and this series was four books instead of three.   It would be so interesting to understand the sadness that Bay and Cricket saw in Luke's eyes.   Luke's next assignment as a Texas Ranger was to investigate some shady dealings that were going on in Shelby County.

And those shady dealings were tied to Jonas Harper.   Jonas was another important secondary character that showcased Johnston's talent in secondary character development.   Just by watching the way Jonas acted and the way he bullied Bay, it was obvious he was more villain than husband material.   And while Bay's reasons for accepting Jonas's proposal were valid (even if she did succumb way too easily), when she turned Long Quiet away, who showed up in the guise of Walker Coburn -- a great big shout out that he gave up everything to be with his love, Bay was not the only one crying copious tears.

In closing, it's obvious that Joan Johnston has a winner on her hands with Comanche Woman, the second book in The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy.   This entertaining book presented a well-told story that included all the factors   necessary for an enjoyable book.   {1} Long Quiet / Walker Coburn was a well-named hero.   This handsome hero walked tall, full of integrity and knew who he was in spite of having the blood of two nationalities running in his veins.   {2} Bayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart was a beautiful heroine that had a special kindness within her in spite of the insecurities that plagued her.   {3} Enough action to keep the story moving at a quick, then steady pace.   {4} A story so well told that the reader couldn't help but become deeply emotionally involved with both Long Quiet and Bay.   {5} Plenty of romance in Long Quiet's constant pursuit of Bay in his efforts to win her love.   {6} The understated, but spicy sensuality during the lovemaking scenes.   {7} An undercurrent of suspense ran through the story (as in: {a} how was Long Quiet going to get Bay out of the Comanche village; {b} how was Long Quiet going to get Bay away from Jonas).   {8} The inclusion of history added a decidedly historical flavor to the story.   {9} Intriguing well-written secondary characters: {a} Many Horses, {b} He Decides It, {c} Little Deer, {d} Rip Stewart, {e} Sloan Stewart, {f} Luke Summers, {g} Jonas Harper, {h} Cruz Guerrero, and {h} Francisco "Cisco" Guerrero.   This wonderful book will remain on my "To Be Re-Read" list.
(The first review was better!)
--Vonda M. Reid (Thursday, October 16, 2014 : 11:44 p.m.)     [342]

Books In The Series: "The Sisters of the Lone Star Trilogy"
# Date Title Hero Heroine
01.08-1988Frontier WomanJarrett CreedCreighton "Cricket" Stewart, youngest sister
02.04-1989Comanche WomanLong Quite / Walker CoburnBayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart, middle sister
03.10-1989Texas WomanCruz Almicar GuerreroSloan Stewart, eldest sister
  secondary:Luke SummersRefugia Adela Maria Tomasita Hidalgo

Characters Found In "Comanche Woman"
Character Description
Long Quiet / Walker Coburn[Hero] spoke perfect English; Comanchero father; Comanche mother (6) went to school with Creed in Boston (7) among the villages of The People, a fierce Comanche warrior; among the Comacheros, a half-breed, gray-eyed Comanche in buckskins who wondered easily between the worlds of the Indian of the white-eyes (8) slate gray eyes (17) shiny black curls escaped long, thick braids (24) angled cheekbones and aquiline nose were more refined; skin was more bronze than copper; his muscular chest slick and smooth with only a provocative line of hair arrow between from his naval downward; broad shoulders tapered to a narrow waist and hips (43) a head taller than Bay (46) arrogant; fierce; uncompromising (48) his face was all angles and shadows, hard, harsh, tense; impressive man, without an ounce of wasted flesh on him; all knotted muscle from his thighs to his lean waist; broad shoulders (58) sensually bowed upper lip (59) too proud for his own good (64) gentleness that allowed him to hold a child in his arms and tell her a bedtime story; respected the strength of character that allowed him to do a woman's work undaunted by the possibility of another's scorn (115) moved with grace; muscular body lithe (138) his long black braids, a Comanches pride, were gone, replaced by blue-black hair cut to the top of his collar; wore black boots, buff kerseymere trousers that fit him like a second skin, a black wool frock coat that ended just above his knees, an embroidered satin waistcoat and a snowy white tucked linen shirt with a stylish white silk cravat knotted at his tanned throat (250)
Bayleigh "Bay" Falkirk Stewart / Shadow[Heroine] tall; violet eyes; flame red hair; stolen from father's plantation by Tall Bear; Rip's second daughter (8) called Shadow; eyes were the deep dark purple of a stormy night; hair burns like the fire in the sunlight (13) tall as a man; shaped like a woman; skin is the golden brown of honey (14) quiet dignity (23) skin had tanned and freckled from exposure to the sun; fingers were calloused from hard work; feet had lost their delicate arch from running barefoot so much of the time; meager self-confidence (35) her once gangly body was lush; her breasts a bounteous promise; slim hips (40)
. . . . . .
General Ampudia[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] led Mexican army in Battle of Mier (178)
Buffalo Woman[No Appearance] Many Horses's wife; died birthing Little Deer (34)
Chester[One Appearance] one of the men that escaped from Castle San Carlos with Luke (217) huge; irascible (218)
Whipp Coburn[One Appearance] Long Quiet and Bay's son (376) curly black hair like father; violet eyes like mother (378) Never Quiet (383)
Comes Running[One Appearance] Comanche youth who traded for white man's traps (149)
Amy Creed[Brief Appearance] Tom's wife; lived in Tennessee; Jesse's godmother (209)
Creighton "Cricket" Stewart Creed[Rare Appearances] [Heroine of Frontier Woman] heavy with child (5) single auburn braid down her back; hair a silky mass; Jarrett's wife (6) outspoken (35) year younger than Bay; father's favorite; impetuous; headstrong; bold (83) radiated happiness in her sparkling eyes and the burble of contained laughter in her voice (191)
Emily Creed[One Appearance] Tom and Amy's 1-y-o daughter (244)
Jarrett Creed[Rare Appearances] [Hero of Frontier Woman] large tanned hands (5) broad muscular chest; flat belly; Comanche name: Wolf; Cricket's husband (6) Long Quiet's best friend (8)
Jesse Elizabeth Creed[Rare Appearances] Creed and Cricket's newborn daughter (193)
Tom Creed[Brief Appearance] Creed's brother; lived in Tennessee; Jesse's godfather (209)
Seth Creed[One Appearance] Tom and Amy's 5-y-o son (244)
Cries at Night[Secondary Character] Many Horses's mother-in-law; taught Bay her duties (32) suffered from arthritis in her joints; closest thing Bay had to a mother; Bay's adviser and teacher, not confidant; hard nomadic Comanche life had wrinkled the old woman's skin and toasted it dark brown (36) black hair; dark eyes; Spanish; once a captive; husband died in battle; dependent upon son-in-law (37)
Eagle Feather[No Appearance] Quohadi Comanche; Red Wing's son; rode with Many Horses; killed (28)
William Fisher[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] led Texans in Battle of Mier (178)
Forked River[One Appearance] member of group of warriors that were hunting with Long Quiet (14) Two Fingers' son; died at hands of whites (346)
Golden Ladysleek; graceful; beautiful mare (311) beautiful blond palomino; blond mane; white blaze between huge brown eyes (320)
Antonio Guerrero[No Appearance] the father of Sloan's son; the younger son of a wealthy Castilian Spaniard; never intended to marry Sloan; killed (204)
Cruz Guerrero[Secondary Character] [Hero of Texas Woman] Antonio's older brother (207) Spaniard; tall; body rapier-thin but laced with corded muscle; hawklike gaze; sensual mouth above a cleft that rent his strong chin; aristocratic; commanding; proud; reputation for gracious friendliness (266) Castilian; forebears were related to royal family in Spain (267) piercing blue eyes (327)
Francisco "Cisco" Guerrero[Secondary Character] Sloan and Antonio's baby; named by the Guerrero's; beautiful; sable hair like Sloan's; blue, blue eyes; looked more like Cruz than Antonio (207) little boy with dark brown hair and blue eyes and looked amazingly like Cruz; cleft in his chin (326)
Doña Lucia Esmeralda Sandoval de Guerrero[One Appearance] Cruz's mother; regal woman; no friendliness in beautiful blue eyes (349)
Jonas Harper[Major Secondary Character] Bay exchanged words of love with him in Boston; had bolstered Bay's self-confidence, had protected her from the fears of an adequacy she'd acquired growing up in a home of two outspoken sisters and an overpowering father; had been happy to find a woman who needed him, someone who depended upon him to sustain her sense of who and what she was (35) square jaw (57) mustache (58) handsome man; chestnut hair; a full mustache covered his upper lip; a flashing smile that charmed without half trying (213) strong, virile body (230) not a graceful loser (263) very clever thief (267)
Captain Hays[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] resided in San Antonio; Texas Ranger (222)
He Decides It[Major Secondary Character] Quohadi Comanche; medicine man; declared it tabu to anyone beyond Many Horses's family to speak to Shadow or cross her path (29) staggering responsibility to be medicine man of entire village, to have the power and life and death over those who came to him for advice (72) he knew much about the individual weaknesses of those who lived in his village. They came to him when they needed powerful medicine to allay their fears; they expected him to know how to combat the evils of disease and famine; they sought from him an explanation of the births and deaths, the good hunts and the bad, the successes or failures in war (73) wrinkles on nose (75)
He Follows the Trail[No Appearance] Quohadi Comanche; Singing Woman's son (29)
Elijah Hopkins[One Appearance] bought Framington Farms last year; an ordained Methodist minister (291) from Vermont (293)
President Sam Houston[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] president of the Republic of Texas; doesn't want to antagonize the president of Mexico (10)
Juanita[Rare Appearances] Paco's sister (274) pretty (300)
Amber Kuykendall[One Appearance] Mrs. Kuykendall's daughter (247)
Mrs. Kuykendall[One Appearance] one of Three Oaks' neighbors (246)
Little Deer[Secondary Character] pixielike face; large black eyes; button nose; sweetly curving mouth (33) small face; 3-y-o daughter of Many Horses and Buffalo Woman; given to Shadow by Cries at Night (34)
Many Horses[Major Secondary Character] threatened to curse any who revealed Bay's presence in the village (14) wounded Comanche warrior that Long Quiet rescued; head shorter than Long Quiet; powerfully built; hard muscle; silent stoicism in the face of what must be horrible pain; an extraordinary man (20) black eyes (25) watched She Touches First; would not acknowledge his interest (30) easy with words (40) high, wide cheekbones and straight, prominent nose of a Comanche; barrel chested (43) too proud for his own good (64) prided himself on his ability to be generous with what he owned, especially what was most precious to him -- his horses and his wives (65)
María[One Appearance] an ancient woman highly skilled in the art of healing with plants and herbs; tiny old woman (349) dark brown eyes were kind; wrinkled face; gnarled fingers (350)
Felicia Myers[One Appearance] wearing stylish dress in harlot red (247)
Paco[Rare Appearances] one of Guerrero's vaqueros; middle-aged Mexican; working with Long Quiet (274) wiry (276)
Rascal[One Appearance] one of Cricket's pet wolves; followed Bay after her capture (32)
Red Wing[Rare Appearances] Quohadi Comanche woman; shelled pecans; son rode with Many Horses (28)
Ruffian[One Appearance] one of Cricket's pet wolves; followed Bay after her capture (32)
Sammy[One Appearance] one of the men that escaped from Castle San Carlos with Luke (217)
General Santa Anna[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] heartless; executed prisoners who tried to escape (10)
She Touches First[Secondary Character] Quohadi Comanche woman; sister to He Decides It; pounded dried buffalo meat (28) young woman; watched Many Horses; never acknowledged her longing for Many Horses (30)
Singing Woman[Brief Appearance] Quohadi Comanche woman; beat dried plums into pulp; son rode with Many Horses (28)
General Somervell[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] led Texas army south (178)
Stands Tall[No Appearance] Long Quiet's grandfather; mother's father; hates all whites (106)
Stephen[One Appearance] the Negro servant who managed Rip's household (197)
Amelia Stewart[No Appearance] Bay's mother; chosen by Rip to marry because she was the only daughter in a nearby Scots family of seven healthy children (1)
Rip Stewart[Major Secondary Character] Bay's father; owner of cotton plantation along the Brazos River; dreamed of having three sons; married Amelia (1) richest gentleman planter in the Republic of Texas (8) overpowering father (35) had expected his daughters to be equal to the task a son might be asked to preform (50) terrible rages, mostly bluff and bluster had frightened Bay (53) huge bear of a man; sat arrogantly, tall and straight; deeper wrinkles etched his brow and somber lines framed his eyes and mouth; gray now threaded through his rich auburn hair, which curled down over his collar; his eyes had lost none of their vitality (19) always went for the jugular (239)
Sloan Stewart[Major Secondary Character] [Heroine of Texas Woman] outspoken (35) year older than Bay; strong; brave; intelligent (83) held her body more rigidly and her chin bore and even more determined thrust than it had 3-y-a; Lowe's, sensuous voice held a sharper edge (190) bitter; cynical; angry (207) appointed as overseer of Three Oaks (211) usually wore red gingham shirt with a tan linsey waistcoat and dark brown fitted osnaburg trousers tucked into knee-high black Wellington boots -- typical planter's garb; dominating presence made her seem taller than she was (248) appeared petite and delicate; huge chocolate brown eyes appeared vulnerable; sable hair; 22-y-o (249) 5'4" (330)
Stewpotdog Bay saved from the cooking pot; speckled; flea-ridden; slept outside Bay's tipi (37)
Luke Summers[Major Secondary Character] [Secondary Hero of Texas Woman] young Texas Ranger; one of Creed's best Rangers; in prison the last year after being captured at the Battle of Mier (10) had aged; the brooding eyes that had so enticed the ladies of San Antonio now reflected a burning fury as well as a bleak bitterness; the well developed back, the whip-lashed shoulders, and the muscular thighs all bore witness to the heavy work he had done, but the flesh had dwindled to a shadow of what had been there before; his hair had grown to shoulder length and was tangled and dirty; there was little left of the charming young Ranger who'd drawn women to his bed like a Texas marsh drew mallards (221) shared some kind of unspoken communication with Cricket (222) had never told anyone that Rip Stewart was his father (223) hazel eyes (260)
Tall Bear[No Appearance] stole Bayleigh from Rip's cotton plantation 3-y-a (8)
Two Fingers[One Appearance] member of group of warriors that were hunting with Long Quiet (14)
General Woll[Actual Historical Character / No Appearance] only kept San Antonio for 9 days (177)

Locations, Organizations Found In "Comanche Woman"
Location / Organization Description
SettingThe Republic of Texas
Birchfieldcotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Castle San Carlosin Perote, Mexico; where Mexican government moved the 150 prisoners captured at the Battle of Mier (10)
Evergreencotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Framington FarmsElijah Hopkins bought last year (291)
Golden Valleythe name of Long Quiet's ranch (378)
Lion's DareCreed's cotton plantation; imposing white frame house (9)
Longwoodcotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Monte Verdecotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Peach Pointcotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Perote, Mexicolocation of Castle San Carlos (10)
Pleasant Grovecotton plantation hit by hard times (211)
Quohadibranch of Comanche to which Many Horses belonged (16)
Rancho DolorosaCruz Guerrero's ranch (257) description (348)
Shelby CountyJonas had profitable holdings there (232)
Tankawathe Comanches' deadliest enemy (17) ate the flesh of their enemies (18)
Three OaksRip Stewart's cotton plantation (36)

"Comanche Woman" Quotations
33There had been no one to talk to, no one with whom to share the ache she felt at being so isolated in the midst of so many.   (Bay)
53It was one thing to make the promise she'd made.   It was an entirely different matter to keep it.   (Bay)
84"There are ways a woman can make a man weak.   Have you never learned to bow a man to your will."   (Long Quiet)
110Her heart went out to him, torn as he was between two peoples, bleeding for the wounded on both sides of the battle he foresaw in the future.   (Bay)
198Bay quickly found herself surrounded by love, awkwardly offered by two people who hadn't had much practice demonstrating their feelings.   (Bay)
225"I'm not sure I can stand to live like a white man -- staying in one place, living in a wooden house, raising the food I eat, bound by manners I have no use for, being friends with people who hate the people I love and have lived with my whole life.   Do you realize what you're asking of me?"   (Long Quiet)
226"If you love her, there really isn't any choice."   (Luke)
250"I've been standing there trying to work up the courage to come inside and tell you how wrong I was ever to leave you, how nothing is more important to me than spending the rest of my life with you."   (Long Quiet)
334"My grandfather once told me, 'Happiness is a feeling inside that makes a gift of each day the Great Spirit gives you to walk upon the Earth Mother.'"   (Long Quiet)

"Joan Johnston -- Comanche Woman" Review and Information Links
Rated Posted Site Notes, Comments, Etc.
----Joan Johnston's WebsiteAuthor
----Joan Johnston's FacebookAuthor
. . . . . . . . .. . .
4.20 average{44 reviews}Amazonas of: November 7, 2014
4.11 average{27 ratings}Barnes & Nobleas of: November 8, 2014
----Fantastic FictionList of Joan Johnston's Books
----Fict FactList of Books In The "Sisters of the Lone Star" Trilogy
----Fiction DBList of Joan Johnston's Books
4.08 average{516 ratings}Good Readsas of: November 8, 2014
positive02/2003Historical Novel Society--Melissa Galyon // PR Review
3.63 average{20 ratings}Library Thingas of: November 8, 2014
76--Mrs. Giggles--Mrs. Giggles // dislike this snarky, mean-spirited review
4.00 average{112 ratings}Paperback Swapas of: November 8, 2014
5.00 average{1 review}Shelfarias of: November 10, 2014 {only my review}
D- 06-26-2012Words From Willow--Willow // good review, but not a Romance Reader
4.7511-09-2014Wolf Bear Does Booksshorter post on Amazon, Fiction DB, Good Reads, Library Thing, Shelfari

♥   Disclaimer:   I Purchased This Book
♥   Very Subjective Rating