Heart’s Delight

Written by Ruth Ryan Langan
Review by Nancy J. Attwell

In this heartwarming romance set at the end of the 19th century, spinster Molly O’Brien is raising four adopted daughters on an isolated farm in Wisconsin. Returning home with her children from their semi-annual trip to town, Molly finds two men who have battered each other into unconsciousness. As she searches their discarded jackets, she realizes that one is a U.S. Marshal, the other a murderer; but how is she to know which is which? Determined to save them both—and to bring the killer to justice—Molly loads the men onto her wagon and brings them home.

As one would expect in a story with this intriguing premise, Heart’s Delight dishes up both amusement and suspense along with the romance. It is unfortunate that the reader must willfully suspend disbelief at several points, including the acceptance that a four-year-old could speak with the diction of an adult, that a mother would leave her children alone with a possible killer, or that a pioneer woman could retain her beauty while single-handedly running a farm, a thriving cheese business, and a spotless house. These distractions aside, this is a charming story that will bring heart’s delight to all fans of the genre.