Note: I originally did this review for the Fall ror the Indie Book Challenge because there was a small press, Cajun Hot Press, listed on Amazon as the publisher. Then I saw on Goodreads that it was originally published by Silhouette Intimate Moments which is an imprint of Harlequin. So, while this appears to be an indie book now, it wasn't originally. Must remember to check goodreads in futrure.
This week I rode on the emotional roller coaster that is Nina Bruhns's Warrior's Bride. Rini Herelius is recovering emotionally abusive relationships with her former fiance and her mother. While attending a Native American Powow she meets and has a fling with a nameless warrior/dancer. They both think it might be the start of something more, but one misunderstanding leads the already heart-sore Rini to take off without even learning his name.
Coleton Lonetree is a handsome, successful lawyer who just wants to find a woman he can count on. After being given up for adoption and being deserted by his first wife after less than twenty-four hours Coleton seems to expect the worst from every romantic relationship. So when Rini leaves him without a word, he just assumes the worst. When they find each other again six months later the fireworks really start in earnest.
If you can get past the idea of the main characters beginning with a one night stand where they have unprotected sex without even learning each others names, then this is a well written emotional story. I honestly had a hard time putting it down. the two main characters are so wounded to begin with that it's easy to feel a lot of sympathy for them. I was really rooting for Rini and Cole to work things out. Bruhns does a great job of building the emotional tension and pulling the reader through the evolution of the characters relationship.
There is also the cultural twist of Cole being Native American. This adds some fuel to the initial conflict not because of any racism on the part of the characters, but because of the various legal and cultural issues with a family of blended cultures. For nerds, like me I found the powow and discussion of Native American culture and adoption added a fascinating element to the book.
All in all, this was a well-written book with likable characters and culturally interesting. I would definitely recommend it.