The Bitter Creek Series, are modern day Western Romance/Adventure stories, by Joan Johnston. In this the second of the series, "The Texan", Bayleigh Creed and Owen Blackthorne are thrown together to try and find their brothers, who are both someway involved in an intriguing and tense mystery concerning the theft of some deadly VX nerve gas. The Creeds and Blackthornes have been bitter enemies for generations, and although the romance that blosoms between the two is predictable(their siblings fell for each other in the first of the series,The Cowboy), there are several other stories going on that will keep you from putting this book down. The hunt for the brothers and the stolen XV nerve gas, puts them in danger at every turn, and the mystery of finding out who the bad guys are, is captivating. Other family members have various sagas going on as well. The young Summer Blacthorne, and "Bad' Billy Coburn start becoming more then friends, and their story heats up with complications. The older generation doesn't get left out either, as the parents story goes back to long before the children were even born. Joan Johnston puts some great finishing touches on the end, but as always, leaves you wanting more. The third in the series,The Loner, picks up the unfinished stories.
Miss Johnston adds just enough of the previous story to fill you in on the background of the characters and the families, so if you haven't read the first one, you will not be lost. She also gives you a good taste of the prequel series, "Sisters of the Lone Star", so that not only will you get an idea of the family history dating back to before Texas was a State, but will leave you wanting to read about the predecessors as well. Those books are (in order), Frontier Woman, Comanche Woman and Texas Woman (Sistersof the Lone Star, #1). All full of fabulous Western adventure,intriguing family sagas, and the steamy romance that Miss Johnston always brings us.The characters are always strong and interesting, and the stories seem well reasearched and they bring realism and sometimes a bit of a history or current event lesson to the story.
If you have not read any of the books mentioned above, and are interested in those as well, please see my reviews for details.
I am looking foward to reading "The Loner", as well as to start in on some of the other series in the Joan Johnston collection.
Enjoy the read...Laurie