This heartwarming romance about a rodeo queen drew me in with its depiction of a young woman’s struggle to find faith after her world falls apart. Natalie was on her way to seeing her dreams come true, she was in the Miss Rodeo America pageant, she had a good looking boyfriend, and she enjoyed life with her father and younger brother and sister. But then she is the runner up in the pageant, her father dies in a tragic accident, her boyfriend leaves her for another women, and she has to drop out of college to take care of her siblings. Natalie feels overwhelmed as she tries to work the ranch and guide her brother and sister through their shared grief. Then a new friend–a young pastor named Jared–appears in their lives. Natalie strikes up a friendship with him, but her questions about God and the reappearance of people from her past keep her from trusting Jared–or God–with her whole heart. Somehow she has to rediscover her faith before she can learn to trust again, the way she did when she was a little girl.
I enjoyed following Natalie and Jared’s journey toward love and faith and I heartily recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian romance. The glimpses into the life of a rodeo queen are fascinating, and the author certainly conveys her love for the Kansas Flint HIls in her writing. I also liked the mystery element she included in the form of notes that the father left behind which were clues to where he had hidden his money. Be sure to check out Kansas author Deborah Vogt’s first book, Snow Melts in Spring, if you enjoy this one. They are part of a series set in the Kansas Flint Hills, but they do not need to be read in order.