HarperTorch, $6.99, ISBN 0-06-101365-X
Historical Romance, 1999
Eulie Toby marries reclusive Mosco Collier (Moss to everyone) in a shotgun wedding after she lied to everyone that Moss had taken advantage of her. Her reason? She needs to get married so that she can have a home. A home is important to keep her siblings from being parceled away after her father’s death. Trouble is, Moss has plans to move away from this place which has been his home all his life. He has saved all his life for that one big day when he would bid the mountains farewell. Eulie’s arrival puts a halt to all that.
Now, I cannot find it in myself to look about Eulie in any favorable light. Her trick is just plain nasty. Worse, she goes on for the rest of the book ignoring everyone’s wishes – Moss’s, her siblings’ – all for the sake of the right thing; her version of rightness, that is. She ignores her siblings’ none-too-subtle protests that they can’t stand each other. She thinks if she musters up a good effort to be a good wife all will be forgiven. All this while walking around being Miss Sunshine with her Pollyanna views. I were Moss, Eulie be dunked in the river by now. The first five chapters of Pollyanna prattles are fine, ten chapters of it and I’ll go diabetic. And if anyone says that annoying phrase “husband-man” to me again, I won’t be responsible if he or she ends up bald.
Poor Moss. He’s a really nice fellow. Gruff, awkward, angry with Eulie yet always kind, I can’t help feeling he deserves better. He’s a lonely man with so many dreams to carry out once he is discharged of his responsibilities, I feel so angry at Eulie for him.
Oh, and it’s a pity no one give that shrill, annoying, scream-happy Minnie a good smack in the face.
Make no mistake, Pamela Morsi writes well. There is nothing technically wrong with this book. The warmth, the atmosphere, and best, of all, the always-wonderful epilogue, they’re all here. Just wish Eulie isn’t.