Monday, March 12, 2018

Book Review: 'When Hearts Fly' by Tanya Hanson

The security of owning a boardinghouse in 1888, willed by a loving aunt, is as good as the promise of a prosperous future, unless of course, a dead brother mortgages it right out from under you!
Cordy Meeker loved her brother, Clancy, but that doesn’t wipe away her anger at him, dead or not, when the local banker shows up threatening to foreclose on her previously free and clear property. How could Clancy mortgage their boardinghouse without her approval? In 1888, a man often had more rights than brains.
All seems doomed until handsome Keaton “Hawk” Shockly arrives with a plan to prove horses can fly! He seems to be Cordy’s dream man, a real Wild West cowboy-type who turns out to be the son of an English Earl. Both he and Cordy need money fast, so she helps him set up a contest that draws entrants from miles around their little town. The “Horses Can Fly!” event, which happens to be based on an actual 1800s experiment, starts bringing in money, barely in the nick of time. Unfortunately, it also puts Hawk in a position to be killed—and just as he starts falling in love with Cordy.
This storyline started well, but it quickly became disjointed by new circumstances that came out of nowhere. It seemed even the story itself had a hard time focusing on the plot. Romantic thoughts popped up throughout the story without any benefit of emotion, reason, or clarity. Other scenes and sentences simply made no sense, i.e., “And, he smiled, much money. Which reminded him, and heat brushed him. He owed her, too. Well, he was practically barefooted; the half-eagle was in his boot upstairs.” Or, “Like melting butter, her golden hair streamed over her shoulders and begged for his mouth.”
However, this western storyline is unique—flying horses! And the methods for proving the theory, worked for me. If you enjoy westerns with a unique slant, this story might be a good one for your next reading weekend.

Editor's note: This article was originally published at Long and Short ReviewsIt has been republished with permission. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.