An Uncommon Protector (2017) by Shelley Shepard Gray is the second novel in the Lone Star Hero series. This novel comes in all forms including eBook, and is 320 pages in length. With a full-time job and a lively five-year old, this novel took me two days to read. I received a free review copy of this novel in eBook form from NetGalley. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own. I give this novel 5 STARS. This novel is a Christian Historical Romance.
About the Book
Overwhelmed by the responsibilities of running a ranch on her own, Laurel Tracey decides to hire a convict—a man who’s just scary enough to take care of squatters and just desperate enough to agree to a one year post. The years following the war have been hard on Laurel Tracey. Both her brother and her father died in battle, and her mother passed away shortly after receiving word of their demise. Laurel has been trying to run her two hundred acre ranch as best she can. When she discovers that squatters have settled in her north pasture and have no intention of leaving, Laurel decides to use the last of her money to free a prisoner from the local jail. If she agrees to offer him room and board for one year, he will have to work for her to pay off his debt.
Former soldier Thomas Baker knows he’s in trouble when he finds himself jailed because he couldn’t pay a few fines. Laurel’s offer might be his only ticket out. Though she’s everything he ever dreamed of in a woman—sweet and tenderhearted, yet strong—he’s determined to remain detached, work hard on her behalf, and count the days until he’s free again. But when cattle start dying and the squatters damage a barn, Thomas realizes more than just his freedom is on the line. Laurel needs someone to believe in her and protect her property. And it isn’t long before Laurel realizes that Thomas Baker is far more than just a former soldier. He’s a trustworthy hero who’s survived a terrible past. He needs more than just his freedom, he needs her love and care too.
I was a little hesitant to read An Uncommon Protector because I had read the first story in this series, The Loyal Heart, and was not impressed. I found that story slow, and I didn’t feel the sparks between the main characters in that novel at all. However, I am really glad I read this book because every page was a page-turner! I truly could not put the book down. The pace is quick, and the romance between the main characters is excellently and realistically written.
The premise of this novel is every girl’s dream: a knight in not-so-shining armor coming to her defense, protecting her, respecting her, and falling for her! Thomas is an excellently written character. He is so realistically damaged, honorable, and strong. I loved him more and more as the story progressed. And, I absolutely love Laurel. She is a great heroine. She is vulnerable and pretty, but she is also smart, feisty, and strong. The action in this novel is non-stop. And, I love how strongly faith was portrayed, but the reader isn’t beaten over the head with a fake, over-the-top message. The belief in God each character has is genuine and realistic.
I love An Uncommon Protector, and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a well-written, sweet, action-packed, clean romance. Check this novel out! You will not be disappointed.