Miracle in a Dry Season    Dangerous Passage





From A Distance
by Tamera Alexander

Reviewed by Vickie McDonough

"...the interesting topic and suspense element will keep readers engrossed to the very satisfying end."

Can a female photographer from the North break down the walls erected by a Southern sharpshooter?

Elizabeth Westbrook longs to be known for who she is, not for the fact that she’s the daughter of a U.S. Senator. When a position for a photographer opens up at the Washington Daily Chronicle, Elizabeth is determined to win the job over the other prospects, even if she has to travel to Colorado to do it. But the wilds of Colorado are more beautiful and ruggedly appealing than any place she has been. She captures the photo she is sure will win her the job, but the plate is destroyed thanks to a determined hunter. Elizabeth demands the man make recompense by serving as a guide so that she can find another winning photograph.

Southern born Daniel Ranslett doesn’t quite know what to make of the feisty female photographer who trots around the countryside with a Negro assistant. The Civil War might be over, but for Daniel, the scars are still raw and the horrible memories still haunt him. Reluctantly, he agrees to help the woman find wildlife to photograph. Before long, Daniel is intrigued by Elizabeth’s tenacity to be the best in her craft in spite of her obvious physical ailments. She stirs up something in him that’s been long dead, but he doesn’t dare hope anything can come of a relationship between an ex-Confederate soldier and a Northerner.

Elizabeth is determined to photograph the Indian cliff dwellings in Mesa Verde, but when Daniel refuses to guide her there she hires another man. Problems begin happening after Elizabeth photographs a dead man she and her assistant found on a trail. Could the photo she took and sent to her editor contain clues to who killed the murdered man?

When it appears Elizabeth’s and her assistant’s lives might be in danger, Daniel agrees to take them to Mesa Verde, just to get them out of town until things can settle down. Can they survive the dangerous trip over the snow-covered mountain passes? Will Daniel maintain his aloofness and keep his heart intact while being in Elizabeth’s presence everyday? Will the secrets they both hold destroy their fledgling attraction?

From A Distance takes readers on a fascinating trip to the Colorado territory and into the world of photography. Readers will experience seeing Colorado through Elizabeth’s eye as she travels deeper and deeper into the wilderness always in search of the photo that is certain to win her the job as photographer for the Washington Daily Chronicle. It’s very evident that author Tamera Alexander has done her research by the intricate details she relates of taking photos and developing them. She’s also done well by throwing together two people who would have been enemies just ten years earlier when the Civil War was still being fought. I liked the tug of attraction between Daniel and Elizabeth. Their relationship, which started with them both irritated at the other, developed naturally yet kept the reader intrigued. Parts of the pacing for this book seemed a bit slow, but the interesting topic and suspense element will keep readers engrossed to the very satisfying end.

Vickie McDonough is an award-winning inspirational romance author. She has written four Heartsong novels and five novellas. Her stories have placed first in several prestigious contests, such as the ACFW Noble Theme, the Inspirational Readers Choice Contest, and the Texas Gold contest. She has also written books reviews for nearly five years and enjoys mentoring new writers. Vickie is a wife of thirty-one years, mother to four sons, and a new grandma. When she’s not writing, Vickie enjoys reading, gardening, watching movies, and traveling. Vickie loves hearing from her readers via e-mail.