Book Review: Paradise Valley by Rosanne Bittner

Paradise Valley by Rosanne Bittner is a historical romance set in America. Maggie Tucker has had a hard life, made even harder when three men attack. They shoot her husband and brutally attack her. She is now lost and alone in the Wyoming Territory. She vows to find the men who killed him and who tried to destroy her. Sage Lightfoot is a former outlaw and current owner of a ranch called Paradise Valley. On his search for three men who murdered his best ranch hand, he finds Maggie collapsed beside an open grave and offers her his help. Together they set off on a journey along the Outlaw Trail in search of justice, and they just find trust and love as well. However, Maggie's secret and a woman from Sage's past could destroy their future before they even have a chance to get started.

Paradise Valley is a well paced historical novel, with plenty of action and conflict. Maggie Tucker is a wounded heroine. Her childhood was terrible, her marriage not much better, she witnesses the murder of her husband, and is then raped and left for dead. Not exactly a woman looking for love. Sage Lightfoot had a childhood that was not much better than Maggie's, but he has face betrayal from the people he should have been safest with and is not exactly looking to fall in love or even lust with anyone soon. With all that said, I did find the tension and conflict in the romance well done. However, I did find that Maggie was a little too willing to hop in the sack after the trauma she had been through. No flashbacks or PTSD symptoms- just "ohh, I did not know it could feel like this" sentiments. But, whatever. The two additional conflicts felt a little like they were added on last minute for added effect- because kidnapping and fighting with a slew of outlaws were not dramatic enough. They were well utilized plot points, but I do not think that they were absolutely necessary. I did not really connect with either Maggie or Sage, but did enjoy getting to know some of the secondary characters. I also liked the ideals in the book, that everyone has some good and bad in them and sometimes the 'bad' is because of circumstance rather than desire. The basic acceptance of others was a nice thing to see.

Paradise Valley is a historical romance full of action, drama, and danger. It is not the best of the genre, but it is a solid read and far from being bad. I think readers that enjoy reading about characters that have trauma and obstacles from their past to overcome, trust issues, and daily danger to deal with will greatly enjoy this book.
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