Monday, July 11, 2016

Mary Connealy's "No Way Up" - a fun western adventure

#1: No Way Up  -     By: Mary Connealy
In the first full-length Cimarron Legacy novel, Heath Kincaid just barely saves his boss's life in a rock slide. Fearing his end may be approaching more swiftly than he'd anticipated, the man puts his will into action, forcing all three of his children to reside and work on the ranch together for a year, or the whole thing will go to a despised distant relation. Heath isn't too keen on having to inform the three siblings, especially when it means the boss's pretty daughter Sadie will only ever look at him as the bearer of bad news. When Heath discovers the rock slide may have been set as a trap, he finds himself working alongside the siblings to save the ranch, and quite possibly his own future.

When I read the free novella prequel to this book, I had suspected that not all was wrapped up. My instincts did not fail me! The mystery of grandfather Chastain's murder has become relevant again, roughly thirty years later. AND, it appears, it is just the start of trouble besetting the Cimarron Ranch--to be continued throughout the series!

I enjoyed the return of Heath Kincaid (from Over the Edge), the youngest Kincaid brother. It was fun to discover his story, and see the impact of struggles he's had from his tough youth, even amongst older and loving brothers. And ah, the sibling dynamic. That's half of what made it so fun--Sadie and her brothers squabbling and pushing each other's buttons (proving the reason why many siblings get along better when they do NOT live together), but then banding together as a solid front against anyone who would threaten their family.

As I am not terribly familiar with New Mexico, I enjoyed this taste of the state and some of the ancient and mysterious history behind it--both the relatively recent back-and-forth ownership with Mexico, and the ancient Puebloan habitation, seen mainly in ruins. Connealy gives a taste of the next book to come, introducing us to Angie DuPree and Justin's points of view, while dangling just enough of Angie's history to set the hook for book number 2.

Thank you Bethany House and NetGalley for providing an e-book to review; I was not required to make the review positive, and all opinions are my own.

Cimarron Legacy
0.5. "The Boden Birthright" (free e-novella prequel)
1. No Way Up
2. Long Time Gone
3. Too Far Down

Kincaid Brides
0.5: "Closer than Brothers: Surviving Andersonville" (a related prequel)
1. Out of Control
2. In Too Deep
3. Over the Edge

"The Tangled Ties the Bind" (novella in Hearts Entwined)

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