Shiloh Coltrane and Sydney Cantrell could not be more opposite in every aspect of life: He’s a rough, uncultured Westerner while she’s from a wealthy Eastern family who values education. In spite of several roadblocks, Sydney put that education to good use by becoming one of the first female physicians in 1800’s America, much less the Western frontier. She’s got a rough path in front of her, as does Shiloh. He’s given up life as a hired gun and now searches for the killers of his sister and her child—and faces the same obstacles as Sydney: the reluctant townspeople and the truculent local military establishment. Despite the difficulties they encounter, that irresistible attraction draws them closer.
And beneath it all is the unspoken difference: she’s a healer and he’s . . . not.
Our Review: Author Dowling has painted a vivid picture of life in the Old West, drawing on societal norms as well as the polar differences which beset human nature of any generation and has not disappointed her devote readers. In Shot Through the Heart, she applied the basic rules of writing successful romances: create well-drawn characters; instill each with believable goals, logical motivations, and strong conflicts both internal and external. Time after time, Shiloh and Sydney are faced with insurmountable barriers, yet they always triumph and do it in clever, inventive ways. This is a joy to read.
On a scale of 1-5, Shot Through the Heart deserves a 5.