A Polish prince on the Texas borderlands of the 1870s provides plenty of fish-out-of water humor and action in this romance. A veteran of the Civil War who has been matured by deceit and hardship, Ivan grabs at an opportunity to own half of a ranch won in a card game. Even though he mistrusts the man who offers, Ivan sees a path to return to his homeland and regain his rightful place in society.
Standing in his way is independent rancher Carla Reece. When hostilities erupt between the town and its Mexican neighbors, Ivan and Carla begin to work together to overcome both each other’s pride and the town’s prejudices to see that justice is done.
The narrative is paced well, but it often resorts to “tell” when a more artful showing might have been a better choice. But the even-handed charm of the hero teams up well with the self-aware prickliness of the object of his affection. They are a good match who will keep readers rooting for their love to conquer all.