Woman of Sunlight by Mary Connealy

He’s Seen the Entire Country.
She’s Never Been Off Her Mountain Home.
When Danger Comes, This Unlikely Couple Will Need to Rely on Each Other.

After years of isolation on top of Hope Mountain, Ilsa Nordegren may finally be ready to leave. Raised to fear the world, Ilsa and her sisters never planned on coming down, but when the Warden family arrived in need, they had to help. And it may cost them everything.

Having made his fortune, Mitch Warden returned home and found the family homestead abandoned. In a land grab, a ruthless cattle baron had forced his family to escape up the mountain, and when he follows, the last thing he expects is to fall smitten to a black-haired woman who dresses like Robin Hood.

Warden is intent on helping his family reclaim their land, but doesn’t realize the risks his past has brought. Dangerous men have tracked him, and rather than risk innocent lives, he’s determined to end the danger. But that means a journey to the city–and when Ilsa insists on joining him, the mismatched pair suddenly find themselves on a venture they’ll never forget.

My Review

I haven’t read the first book, Aiming for Love, so it took a few chapters to grasp what was happening in this novel.

Woman of Sunlight starts amusingly with Mitch Warden trying to get Ilsa Nordgren to rest even though she is recovered from chickenpox. She is upset with him for spreading the chickenpox to her when he returned to his family. The Wardens were Ilsa’s nearest neighbors but had been driven out of their home so were staying with Ilsa when Mitch returned home.

As they moved along, Mitch looked at her speckled face and said, “I’m really sorry I gave you my chickenpox.” His already-tight hold squeezed a bit more. “Really sorry, Ilsa. I had no idea I’d been near anyone who was sick, but then maybe they showed no symptoms. I probably gave it to you before I knew I had it.”

“My grandma always made Grandpa stay away when he’d gone to town.”

“That’s called a quarantine. It’s usually only called for when a disease is identified, not every time someone has been near another person.”

Her grandfather chose to use herbs for his health instead of being afraid and taught Ilsa how to wisely use herbs too.

When hired gunmen come up the mountains to kill Mitch, Ilsa swoops down from the trees Tarzan-style to help Mitch fight them off. They find the name of Mitch’s old partner who eloped with Mitch’s intended in the pocket of the gunman who died in the shootout. Mitch suspects his old partner is the one who has been trying to kill him so he can get Mitch’s millions. He realizes he won’t ever be safe even in the near wilds of Bucksnort, Tennessee.

The Wardens and Ilsa go to town to tell the sheriff what happened and deliver the gunmen to him. Unfortunately, the trip does not turn out quite as expected. Mitch and Ilsa suddenly are married but not for the reason you may be assuming. Even though she finds Mitch attractive, Ilsa feels the necessity to get to know him before having an intimate relationship.

I enjoyed seeing their friendship change to love. She had very little knowledge of social customs which was difficult for her new husband at times. Mitch works on learning to accept her as she is and avoids trying to ‘fix’ her.

The newly married couple set off on a several days journey to hire the Pinkerton Agency. The repeated attempts on Mitch’s life needed to be stopped or none of Mitch’s loved ones would ever be safe!

Mitch and Ilsa are shot at again in Chicago. He wonders if there is a double agent in the Pinkertons who is sharing his location with his enemies. The final scenes where the killer is identified were unusual. I liked how thoroughly this plot line was developed.

Why Ilsa’s older sister Ursula was alone at the top of the mountain was unclear until the last third of the book. I was sad for Ursula and that her terror of illness was making her so depressed. Hopefully she will be healed of this fear in the next book.

A couple scenes mildly exasperated me but I really loved the amusing scenes in this clean romance. I was once again impressed that God had inspired another author to include a quarantinable disease in her book at this time!

If you are afraid because of the recent pandemic, consider reading this clean romance. It takes courage for all of us to go through any disease. Ilsa finds that living an unsheltered life is much easier than she thought. Woman of Sunlight is a reminder that God never forsakes us.

I received a free advanced reader copy of this book. All opinions are completely my own.

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Get a copy of Woman of Sunlight: The Brides of Hope Mountain Book #2:
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About the Author

Mary Connealy writes romantic comedies with cowboys and is celebrated for her fun, zany, action-packed style. She is a two time Carol Award winner, and a Rita, Christy and Inspirational Reader’s Choice finalist.

Mary is the bestselling author of over 50 books and novellas has nearly always a million books in print. Her most recent book series are Garrison’s Law, High Sierra Sweethearts, Cimarron Legacy, Wild at Heart, Trouble in Texas, and Kincaid Brides.

Mary lives on a ranch in eastern Nebraska with her very own romantic cowboy hero.

You can follow Mary Connealy here:
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2 Replies to “Woman of Sunlight by Mary Connealy”

  1. Ruth Ann, you know, this is the first time I’ve been struck by there being a quarantine in this series? I mean, I knew they were in there, the quarantine references but only now have I connected them to the current ‘stay at home’ orders. The world wide quarantine. What an strange and miraculous thing!!! Thank you for mentioning it in a way that woke me up!

    1. I had planned to review your book in March but many things happened to prevent me from doing that. If I had reviewed it then I would not have made the connection with the quarantine either. God has perfect timing. Now is a great time to begin talking about letting go of our fear just like Ilsa and her sisters had to do.

I hope you enjoyed reading this! What is your take on the story?