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The Wren
Kristy McCaffrey
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Ten years have passed since her ranch was attacked, her folks murdered and MOLLY HART was abducted. Now, at nineteen, she’s finally returning home to north Texas after spending the remainder of her childhood with a tribe of Kwahadi Comanche. What she finds is a deserted home coated with dust and the passage of time, the chilling discovery of her own gravesite, and the presence of a man she thought never to see again.

MATT RYAN is pushed by a restless wind to the broken-down remains of the Hart ranch. Recently recovering from an imprisonment that nearly ended his life, the drive for truth and fairness has all but abandoned him. For ten years he faithfully served the U.S. Army and the Texas Rangers, seeking justice for the brutal murder of a little girl, only to find closure and healing beyond his grasp. Returning to the place where it all began, he’s surprised to stumble across a woman with the same blue eyes as the child he can’t put out of his mind.

Matt reined in his horse near the main house then dismounted. He had spent all morning repairing a collapsed roof on one of the line shacks. With his stomach growling for food he was about to enter the house when he noticed Molly on horseback in the larger of the two corrals. There was someone with her he didn't recognize. Tying off his horse he began walking toward them but Logan came out of the barn, cutting him off.

"Who's that with Molly?" he asked.

Logan squinted. "Well, let's see. His name is Howie, I think. Howie Martin. Yep, that's it."

"Who is Howie Martin?" Matt asked ominously. He didn't like the gleam in his brother's eyes.

"He's workin' the Callahan ranch. Came by to return some of our beeves that wandered onto their land, so I didn't want to pass on a great opportunity."

"And what would that be?" Matt knew Logan was deliberately trying to provoke him.

"A potential suitor for Molly."

Matt stopped short and Logan just laughed. "You said we ought to marry her off," his brother added, slapping him on the back as they continued walking closer to the corral.

Molly sat on Pecos, bareback, talking to Howie while he tried to mount his horse, also without a saddle. But the youth, blond-haired and wide-eyed, couldn't seem to get the animal to settle down.

"Molly's quite a good rider," Logan said quietly, just for Matt's ears. "I suggested she teach Howie how to ride bareback. I think he's fairly taken with her, don't you? Although I wouldn't mention matrimony just yet. Wouldn't want to scare him off."

"Howie doesn't look old enough to shave yet," Matt said, irritated by Logan's meddling. What he'd said about doing right by Molly was one thing. Seeing the reality of it was something else entirely.

"Yeah, I know," Logan conceded. "That's why I asked him how old he was. He claims he's nineteen. God's truth," he added, straight-faced. "He also pointed out, in front of Molly I might add, he's making forty-five dollars a month from the Callahans. The lad seems solid."

Matt swore under his breath as Logan walked off, grinning from ear to ear.

"Howie, you've really got to calm down," Molly was saying. "If the horse won't stop moving, you won't be able to get on."

"But you jumped on yer horse while she was movin'," Howie said in exasperation.

"I don't think you're quite ready for that," she said. Her hair was gathered at the base of her neck and hidden by her hat.

Although the graceful lines of her neck and straight back caught Matt's eye, it was the glimpse of bare leg peeking from beneath a light blue skirt that drew his gaze, annoying him. It bunched up far too much.

What was she doing riding bareback in a dress anyhow?

"Molly," he said loudly.

Startled, she looked over her shoulder at him, then smiled and waved. At that moment Howie managed to hoist himself onto his horse but in mere seconds was thrown to the ground. He groaned.

"Howie? Are you all right?" Molly asked, turning her attention back to the youth. "It's all about balance. I thought you'd ridden since you were six."

"Yeah," he said, dusting off his backside as he stood, "but it's a lot easier with a saddle to hang onto."

"Howie," Matt said, "I'm sure the Callahans are wondering what happened to you. You better get on back."

"Who're you?" he asked.

"Matthew Ryan."

At that the boy's eyes widened even more. "Really? It's a great pleasure to meet you, Mr. Ryan." Howie immediately moved to the edge of the corral where Matt stood casually resting his arms on the wooden fence. Howie shook Matt's hand enthusiastically. "I've heard a lot about you, sir. You're a legend in these parts, ridin' with the Rangers. Was it really true you killed a bear while fightin' off hundreds of Kiowas? And did you kill a two-timin' trader from five hundred yards with only one shot right between his eyes?"

Molly moved her horse nearer. When Matt chanced a glance at her, she was smiling.

"Quietly impressive characters promise that this new author is someone to watch. In addition to her introspective characters, McCaffrey's mastery of setting and historic details gives this western gritty realism." Romantic Times BookClub


"Painting a picture of words so vivid I could see the characters come to life, Ms. McCaffrey took my breath away with her compelling characters and exciting storyline!" Teresa Henson, Romance Junkies


"I am a true western historical fan so this book really was an exceptional read for me. Don't miss...what is sure to be a great series to follow." Dina Smith, The Romance Studio


"This wonderful story has it all: action, romance, adventure. Well written and fast paced, The Wren was a delight to read." ~ Ingrid Taylor, Small Press Review


"The Wren...is both touching and tragic. A romance and hauntingly good read." Pamela James, The Writer's Room


"If you enjoy historical romances you'll definitely enjoy this one! I loved it and would read it again." Maria DesRosiers, eBook Reviews Weekly"


I enjoyed Kristy McCaffery's The Wren. I thought that it was well written and it captivated me from the first line to the poignant last. McCaffrey's skilled mixture of words to enhance imagery was first-rate and brought the story to vivid life. I enjoyed the spirited Molly and her acceptance of the woman she became though faced with uncertainty and tragedy. The Wren is a delicious story told by an author that will be a favorite of many. Kristy McCaffrey is one to watch! Reviewed By Maci Walker Novelspot

Fiction Books :: Romance Books :: Historical Books

ISBN: 1593740436
ISBN(13-digit): 9781593740436
Copyright: 2009
Book Publisher: Whiskey creek Press
Binding: Perfect
No. of Pages: 310
Paper Weight (lb): 12.4

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