3.0 on the Masq Scale. Darlin' Irish by @LynHornerauthor #historical #bookreview

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Darlin' Irish

(Texas Devlins)

Written by Lyn Horner

Genre: Historical Romance, Fantasy

Book Synopsis

Set in the American West of 1872, Darlin' Druid is a tale of epic adventure, stormy romance and family strife, sparked by flashes of Druid magic. Jessie Devlin, a daughter of Irish immigrants and a survivor of the Great Chicago Fire, is descended from the "Old Ones," her mother's name for their ancient Druid ancestors.

Gifted with second sight, Jessie suffers nightmares in which an unknown man saves her from burning to death. A prophetic vision convinces her the man truly exists and to find him she must look west. But will her quest lead her to love or into a deadly trap?

Captain David Taylor is a Texan who sided with the North in the Civil War, earning his father's abiding wrath. Now serving on the frontier, David longs for home and a family of his own. After a trip east, he encounters Jessie in the Omaha train depot. He's entranced by her beauty but has no taste for her firecracker temper. She brings to mind a ghost from his past who he'd rather forget.

As the two journey westward, their clashing personalities war with fiery passion that threatens to overwhelm common sense. Violence dogs them along the rails and explodes amid the unexpected beauty of Mormon Utah and in an isolated mountain mining camp. Whether love will win the day or be lost forever is a question that hangs in the balance until the terrifying conclusion on the broad Texas plains.

Beverly D's Review

I loved the IDEA of this book. Psychically gifted Irish siblings survive the Great Chicago Fire, travel to Utah for silver mining, and in this volume, Jessie finds love with a Texas rancher who was also a captain in the UNION Army. As anyone can imagine, this sets up his father and local Texas neighbors in a very antagonistic position.

Captain David Taylor has plenty of personal conflict, internal and external, to resolve, but Jessie really doesn't. The only thing she has is her (old) visions, of a good guy who loves her, and a bad one bent on her destruction. She's very pretty, and has the (stereotypical) hot Irish temper, but mostly, her allies just like her... because she's pretty, I guess. We don't SEE her working or battling to attain her goals. And the coming-and-going use of exaggerated Irish brogue was, faith and begorra! grating.

Another of my pet peeves is a stupid/naive heroine. We first see Jessie get into trouble alone at a train station (from which Captain Taylor rescues her). Not learning from this experience, she wanders off at another and gets in major trouble AGAIN (from which Captain Taylor rescues her). Not learning from this, in Salt Lake City, Jessie gets involved with a man her kindly employer senses is Up To No Good. Yep, Major Trouble Again, from which...

Another thing we don't see is the active use of psychic powers. Jessie has recurring dreams/visions, dating back to her time in Chicago, but nothing NEW. When her brother Tye makes an appearance, if he has any kind of psychic powers, they are well hidden. As far as Jessie's powers, they don't seem to induce her to think or behave any differently; she doesn't treat them as a tool, to change or modify her behavior.

The descriptions of train travel, life in Salt Lake City, and on the ranch on Texas are interesting. There are many interesting, likable, and heroic secondary characters, but Jessie herself left me flat. She's jealous, somewhat petty, not particularly intuitive...

It's not, IMO, a horrible book, but it's not really a fantasy novel, more a historical romance with a light sprinkle of fantasy elements.

Review Disclaimer: Book provided in exchange for an honest review.

Content Disclaimer: Knife and gunfights, some mildly steamy sexual encounters.

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