My Heart Belongs in the Superstition Mountains: Carmela’s Quandary by Susan Page Davis

My Heart Belongs in the Superstition Mountains: Carmela’s Quandary

Journey now to Tuscon, Arizona, and into the Superstition Mountains of 1866, where...  A Chance for Escape Takes Two Unlikely Allies on a Romantic Adventure Along a Desert Trail  Since orphaned at age twelve, Carmela Wade has lived a lie orchestrated by her uncle, pretending to be a survivor of an Indian kidnapping and profiting from telling her made-up story on the speake...

Title:My Heart Belongs in the Superstition Mountains: Carmela’s Quandary
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My Heart Belongs in the Superstition Mountains: Carmela’s Quandary Reviews

  • Jodie Wolfe

    Carmela Wade has lived a lie since she was twelve. She's longed to break free of her uncle and their life on the road, traveling to tell others about her supposed life as an Indian captive. She's hated deceiving folks, but hasn't come up with a way to support herself and is still under age.

    US Marshal Freeland McKay hopes to transport his prisoner to Prescott without incidents. When Carmela and her uncle travel on the same stagecoach, his curiosity is aroused. When problems befall them, he feels

    Carmela Wade has lived a lie since she was twelve. She's longed to break free of her uncle and their life on the road, traveling to tell others about her supposed life as an Indian captive. She's hated deceiving folks, but hasn't come up with a way to support herself and is still under age.

    US Marshal Freeland McKay hopes to transport his prisoner to Prescott without incidents. When Carmela and her uncle travel on the same stagecoach, his curiosity is aroused. When problems befall them, he feels he must do what he can to protect her.

    Susan Page Davis weaves an intriguing tale with just the right amount of historical details, suspense, and romance. I was sad when the book came to an end. Great job, Susan.

  • Hannah

    4.5 stars

    I really enjoyed this Western adventure. Engaging characters with Camela and Freeland, and a delightful lack of overly descriptive romance! I could comfortably recommend this book even to young teens.

    Carmela is a young woman of twenty whose uncle has been exploiting her for years. Her parents died on the trail to California, and she was cared for by kind friends for some months before her closest living relative, her uncle, could arrive to claim her. He, citing unpaid debts her parents

    4.5 stars

    I really enjoyed this Western adventure. Engaging characters with Camela and Freeland, and a delightful lack of overly descriptive romance! I could comfortably recommend this book even to young teens.

    Carmela is a young woman of twenty whose uncle has been exploiting her for years. Her parents died on the trail to California, and she was cared for by kind friends for some months before her closest living relative, her uncle, could arrive to claim her. He, citing unpaid debts her parents owed, and guilting/punishing her into submission, invents a story of her having been a victim of an Indian attack and forces her to tour the country telling the story he invented.

    Freeland's a marshal from Tucson and is riding along with a prisoner he is transporting when the stagecoach they are on is robbed. The bad guys leave Carmela and Freeland handcuffed together in the desert and ride off with their loot.

    First there's the fight to survive the desert; then, the choice Carmela faces: for the first time in her recent life, she is away from her uncle and able to speak for herself. But how can she break through the habitual lies of years? How can she admit she's been telling an untrue story all this time?

    Also: I loved Mrs. Finney!

    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book for my honest review.

  • Karen

    A historical romance with the flair of the old West! Quick paced for the most part, with interesting characters, and a bit of real history mixed in, it kept me turning the page to find out what happened next! Arizona Territory in 1866 was a rough, unsettled place, and made a colorful backdrop to the story.

    Carmela is a sincere young woman stuck in a dishonest situation, torn between family loyalty and the need to break free. I loved her stalwart spirit, and the compassion she shows others, often

    A historical romance with the flair of the old West! Quick paced for the most part, with interesting characters, and a bit of real history mixed in, it kept me turning the page to find out what happened next! Arizona Territory in 1866 was a rough, unsettled place, and made a colorful backdrop to the story.

    Carmela is a sincere young woman stuck in a dishonest situation, torn between family loyalty and the need to break free. I loved her stalwart spirit, and the compassion she shows others, often at the risk of her own safety. Stepping out in her fledgling faith, she moves towards righting past wrongs, hoping for a new beginning. I couldn't help but cheer for her!

    Freeland is a great western hero, brave and true, recognizing the special young woman he has been paired with in their adventure together. His kindness underneath the tough exterior made him a very likable character.

    Recommend to readers who enjoy historical Christian romances in a western setting!

    (An e-book provided by NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.)

  • Andrea

    5 Stars! The story inside this beautiful cover does not disappoint. I loved it!

    Carmela's Quandary is a quick moving story filled with tragedy, suspense and many twists and turns.

    Carmela becomes the ward of her Uncle Silas at the age of twelve when her parents die on the trail west. Silas forces young Carmela to perform in front of large crowds, telling a made up story of captivity. As Carmela ages, she longs to stop the lies, but her uncle says she must perform, he says she owes him for her fa

    5 Stars! The story inside this beautiful cover does not disappoint. I loved it!

    Carmela's Quandary is a quick moving story filled with tragedy, suspense and many twists and turns.

    Carmela becomes the ward of her Uncle Silas at the age of twelve when her parents die on the trail west. Silas forces young Carmela to perform in front of large crowds, telling a made up story of captivity. As Carmela ages, she longs to stop the lies, but her uncle says she must perform, he says she owes him for her father's debt. A stage coach robbery provides an opportunity like none other. With Uncle Silas injured and taken by the robbers, Carmela ends up handcuffed to a handsome deputy.

    I will stop here, I don't want to give any spoilers. If you are drawn to the Inspirational Historical western fiction genre, you will love this book, if not, this would be a perfect introduction.

  • Julie Carpenter

    Carmela's Quandary...a great title for this story. Carmela was a little girl when her wagon train was attacked by Indians, her parents killed and she was taken captive. She lived five years with the Indians and was marked as their own by a series of tattoos that cover her lower face. Now she goes around speaking and sharing her story. Her uncle manages all her events and controls the money. Now Carmela is 20 years old and has a problem...a big problem. Everything she has said has been a lie!!!!

    C

    Carmela's Quandary...a great title for this story. Carmela was a little girl when her wagon train was attacked by Indians, her parents killed and she was taken captive. She lived five years with the Indians and was marked as their own by a series of tattoos that cover her lower face. Now she goes around speaking and sharing her story. Her uncle manages all her events and controls the money. Now Carmela is 20 years old and has a problem...a big problem. Everything she has said has been a lie!!!!

    Carmela finds herself finishing a speaking engagement in Tucson, the second one in five years, and then heading out on a stagecoach to the next town for another engagement. There are also several other passengers onboard, one of whom looks like a grown version of a young boy she meet years ago on her first visit to Tucson. That young boy told her that he could help her, more importantly, his brother who is a deputy could help her. Well that deputy brother, Freeland McKay, is on the stagecoach escorting a prisoner. Carmela can't believe the chances of meeting him in this way. Could he possibly be the answer to her prayers? Could he be the one to help her right the wrongs and lies she told for years under her uncle's direction?

    This was a sweet western romance with peril and soul searching. There were a few moments where it seemed slower paced and I found myself skimming. I enjoyed the struggle that Carmela had to go through. I liked watching her figure out how to go about becoming the person she truly wanted to be and not the person she was told she was by her uncle as well as all those who had heard her "story". She truly sought to do good and be a good person. Even with how she was used by her uncle she still had compassion towards him. She was definitely a good example for the many people she encountered. I liked the way the author wrote Carmela's character as being able to help others. Also that Carmela never lied in her personal interactions when asked questions, she did her best to be honest and not lie.

    As the stagecoach they are riding on is attacked Carmela finds herself in several perilous moments. Her uncle is shot, she is handcuffed, the stage is stolen, her uncle gone, and she is left in the desert with an unconscious deputy. With many encounters with Indians, bandits, townspeople and others who were captured by Indians, Carmela has much to learn and much to offer.

    The story alternates between Carmela and Freeland's POV. Sometimes they are together and other times they are separated by his duties as a deputy. I enjoyed reading their different perspectives and thoughts.

    Content: Sweet clean romance, some shootouts and a couple battle wounds but nothing graphic. This is a Christian fiction so there is talk of God and the characters occasionally offer prayers asking for help. It flowed very well with the storyline and with the growth Carmela went through.

    I received an ARC from Barbour publishing via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions in the review are my own.

    Happy Reading!!!

  • Marlene

    I enjoyed this book so much! If you like a clean Western, look no farther!

    (2017, Barbour) by

    , second in the

    series, is a Christian Western with a touch of romance set in 1866 Arizona Territory, right after the civil war. The novel is a standalone story, with the first book written by another author and set in another state. I jumped at the chance to receive this book through NetGalley in exchang

    I enjoyed this book so much! If you like a clean Western, look no farther!

    (2017, Barbour) by

    , second in the

    series, is a Christian Western with a touch of romance set in 1866 Arizona Territory, right after the civil war. The novel is a standalone story, with the first book written by another author and set in another state. I jumped at the chance to receive this book through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review, because I previously enjoyed this author’s

    trilogy.

    Carmela Wade was orphaned at age twelve and became a ward to her Uncle Silas. Unfortunately, Silas viewed Carmela as a way to make a profit. He put black and blue Indian markings on her chin and coerced her to give speeches about her (completely fabricated) captivity by a group of Indians. She hates doing it, but “if she didn’t say her piece word-perfect and reply to the people’s questions with the answers he had formulated, she would pay dearly for it later.” In chapter two, the story jumps forward several years, and Carmela is still in the same predicament, but she is twenty years old and will soon reach her majority.

    In the first chapter, which feels like a prologue, Freeland McKay’s little brother Will recognizes that Carmela is in need of help. Will asks Freeland to use his position as a deputy marshal to find a way to help Carmela. Circumstances intervene, and Carmela leaves town before he can do attempt to do anything. Five years later, her uncle has scheduled another speaking engagement in Tucson and this time, Freeland and Carmela cross paths. Adventure follows!

    *The theme of deceit versus truth is very much present throughout this book. In fact, it may be the best literary example I’ve ever seen. It includes a well-balanced and realistic picture of the impact of deceit and and of the aftermath once the truth is told. (It is simultaneously freeing and challenging to turn your life around.)

    *I also really liked Carmela’s faith. “Her mother had always taught her that things turned out best for those who loved God. That was hard to accept now, with her parents gone and the deception she’d been forced to live for the past eight years. Now she was utterly alone, but she couldn’t shake off her faith. Bad things happened to God’s people, she knew that. She wasn’t sure why He allowed suffering, but somehow, all of this was supposed to lead her to a good outcome - if not in this life, then in the next.”

    *The author included an impressive amount of detail, and this book seems to be very well-researched. I learned a little bit about the Superstition Mountains, which I had previously never heard of. Also, I found the following quote informative: “Now that the war was over, there was no money to build things like railroads. The West needed time to recover.” I’ve never witnessed the effects of a war, but this statement makes perfect sense.

    *I enjoyed the action in this story. It was just enough to keep it interesting, but I didn’t feel like it was implausible.

    I would have preferred more romance. Given the plot, I don’t think the lack of romance was a flaw, so this doesn’t affect my rating. But I think it’s worth noting here, because like me, some other readers prefer romance to be more present. Personally, I seek out almost exclusively romance novels, and I rarely (and grudgingly) read stories that are not romances. I actually wouldn’t classify this book as a romance. While there is a HEA (happily ever after) at 98% into the book, and the reader knows partway through that the hero and heroine hold each other in high regard, there is no witty dialogue or flirting between the two. Surprisingly, though, I was totally content with their interactions, because this was a wonderfully engrossing, well-written story.

    I recommend this book to fans of Christian (and/or clean) Westerns. I will continue to read more of Ms. Davis’s stories. I have put

    on my to-read list, as my husband and I will be going to PEI in the not-too-distant future. :-)

  • Deanne Patterson

    Forced to give speeches,by her uncle, since she was 12 about a supposed Indian abduction that happened to her,Carmela is miserable. When her parents and brother died on the trail she is alone in the world until her uncle swoops in and takes her under his wing . He says her father owes him a large amount of money that she must repay the debt. He forces her to speak about a fictitious Indian abduction happening to her. These speeches happen in many towns and he makes a large amount of money . On t

    Forced to give speeches,by her uncle, since she was 12 about a supposed Indian abduction that happened to her,Carmela is miserable. When her parents and brother died on the trail she is alone in the world until her uncle swoops in and takes her under his wing . He says her father owes him a large amount of money that she must repay the debt. He forces her to speak about a fictitious Indian abduction happening to her. These speeches happen in many towns and he makes a large amount of money . On the way to the next town their stagecoach is robbed and her uncle is wounded. Not knowing if he is dead or alive she is rescued from the stagecoach by the deputy US marshal. She longs to end the deception and this way of life. This book was very interesting and kept my attention. I am really enjoying the, My Heart Belongs series from Barbour books. It's fascinating to read historical stories about different states. This takes place in Arizona and I used to live in Yuma, Arizona where part of this story took place. I could definitely see this taking place in the wilds of the Arizona desert.

    Looking forward to reading more from this series.

    Pub Date 01 Mar 2017

    Thank you to Netgalley and Barbour Books for providing me with a review copy for my honest opinion.

  • Rebekah Tooley

    This was a great book that definitely kept my attention! Poor girl! I would be sure to read this again!

  • Amy

    This was certainly a Wild West adventure in the Arizona territory for one Carmela Wade and US Marshal Freeland McKay. Since being orphaned at 12 years old, Carmela has lived a life of bondage and lies with her charlatan uncle never allowed to grow up in a normal home with love and affection. I was actually shocked and amazed at the lengths her uncle went to make the act Carmela had to put on as believable as possible. There was quite a bit of action in this story: outlaws, Native American attack

    This was certainly a Wild West adventure in the Arizona territory for one Carmela Wade and US Marshal Freeland McKay. Since being orphaned at 12 years old, Carmela has lived a life of bondage and lies with her charlatan uncle never allowed to grow up in a normal home with love and affection. I was actually shocked and amazed at the lengths her uncle went to make the act Carmela had to put on as believable as possible. There was quite a bit of action in this story: outlaws, Native American attacks, and kidnappings all taking place in a country that was just beginning to recover from the American Civil War.

    I liked how the author showed how such fictitious stories can start and how mobs can quickly be formed with so little evidence or truth, especially when there is little to no forgiveness and she compared that to genuine forgiveness and love. There were also some great lessons that no matter what you have been through, your past can be a positive influence to help others in their current dilemmas.

    I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a positive review.

  • ⚜️Trea

    This was so much better than the previous book in the series! While I no longer read much historical romance, I do enjoy them upon occasion. I was immediately drawn into this story, and was unable to put it down!

    Carmela was a multi-faceted character stuck in horrible circumstances. I appreciated her fortitude and unwillingness to give up or complain about things. She was an inspiring character. Freeland seemed to be a good and honorable character, one who looked past Carmela's past to who she wa

    This was so much better than the previous book in the series! While I no longer read much historical romance, I do enjoy them upon occasion. I was immediately drawn into this story, and was unable to put it down!

    Carmela was a multi-faceted character stuck in horrible circumstances. I appreciated her fortitude and unwillingness to give up or complain about things. She was an inspiring character. Freeland seemed to be a good and honorable character, one who looked past Carmela's past to who she was trying to be. I was sad to hear about what happened to the brother that tried to bring the two of them together. The story wasn't preachy at all for being an inspirational romance, and the faith was actually very believable.

    The main problem I had with it was that there really wasn't enough interaction between Carmela and Freeland to warrant declarations of love and proposals of marriage. I would have preferred to see a bit of a courtship between the two of them before marriage was proposed, honestly, but it didn't detract much from my enjoyment of the story overall. I am very eager to read the next book in the series!


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