I fell in love with Kaki Warner’s writing when I read the first book in her Blood Rose trilogy, Pieces of Sky, last year. Her characters were so well written and the romances were just *chef’s kiss* perfection. Once I finished that trilogy, I picked up Warner’s only attempt (so far) at modern Western romance, Rough Creek. I was shocked at how much I DISLIKED that book. It ended up being a DNF because it was so bland and boring. However, I wanted to give her books another chance so I picked up the Runaway Brides trilogy. I also bought the spin off trilogy, Heroes of Heartbreak Creek. These books are historical Western romances, like the Blood Rose trilogy, so I fully expected to love them… Unfortunately, as of right now, that isn’t the case. Heartbreak Creek, what I’m reviewing today, is simply okay BUT I have high hopes for the rest of the series. Let’s talk about it! This review will be spoiler free.
I like to give a heat level rating for all books with romance. If you’re curious about my rating system, you can check it out here.
Edwina Ladoux hoped becoming a mail-order bride would be her way to a better life, but as soon as she arrives in Heartbreak, Colorado, and meets Declan Brodie and his four rambunctious children, she realizes she’s made a mistake. Luckily, Edwina and Declan agreed on a three month courtship period, which should give them time to get the proxy marriage annulled. Except that as the weeks pass, thoughts of annulment turn into hopes for a real marriage- until Declan’s first wife suddenly returns.
- Heat Level-
This book was so close to being fantastic. A romance set in the 1800s Wild West is usually my thing but unfortunately, Heartbreak Creek fell a little short.
In typical Kaki Warner style, the characters had a lot of depth and I was truly interested in all of them, even the villains. I especially loved the two main characters, Declan and Edwina. Declan is the strong, silent type while Edwina is independent and feisty. Those types of characters being thrown together for a slow burn romance should have been a match made in bookish heaven for me… and it would have been if the pacing was better.
The book started off strong but really got bogged down in the middle. I found myself skimming a good bit until the last 15% or so. This was a more plot driven story rather than character driven so events kept happening to keep Edwina and Declan apart. The slow burn aspect actually didn’t go on for that long but they still couldn’t be together because of different circumstances. In my opinion, that isn’t entertaining to read about, it’s annoying. This might be a me thing but I always prefer character development over anything else and I left this book still not really “knowing” the characters. Right when things got super interesting, the story ended. This is part of a trilogy, though, and while the next book follows one of the side characters, I know that the main characters from this one do make an appearance. I can only hope that they’ll be further fleshed out because they have a ton of potential.
Heartbreak Creek isn’t bad, it’s just disappointing.The ending was fantastic and since I didn’t read the synopsis beforehand, I was totally surprised by some of the twists. I do look forward to finishing the series because I am interested but I wish I felt more invested than I do.
I have yet to find a Western romance, by any author, that is on par with Pieces of Sky but of course, I’ll keep reading them until I do. If you know of any, please let me know! Thanks for reading and have a great day!
8 thoughts on “Book Review for “Heartbreak Creek” by Kaki Warner”
Who cares what you think. Why don’t you go write your own books instead of trashing other people’s. Why do you think it’s okay to trash other people’s work? Your opinion is just that – one opinion in a sea of other opinions. Why don’t you go spend your time actually creating something rather than tearing down what other people create? Pretty destructive behavior, and yes, that is MY opinion.
Is this your first day on the internet, dear?😂 This is a review blog. I review things here. Reviews sometimes entail negative opinions. If you thought this review was “trashing” other people’s work, you would be horrified at what I’ve said about other books. Thanks for the laugh, Janice.
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I don’t think you understand the point of reader blogs or reader reviews. Also, you read the review. No one made you do it. I don’t understand your anger. She was honest and pointed out what worked and what didn’t and that’s what readers want. We’re all smart enough to make up our minds. Maybe buy the book and write your own review instead of leaving rude comments on someone else’s?
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Yep – negative book bloggers are just readers with entitlement problems who think they get to say whatever they like. Imagine if someone tears you apart for all your hard work. Imagine if someone trashes all your hard work just because they decided to be a professional commenter (and yes, I’m well aware there is no such thing just in case you didn’t get the sarcasm). Not so fun, is it? Laugh if you will but spending time taking other people’s work apart just makes you a troll with an opinion trying to be seen by being destructive about other people’s work. Try using all that time you spend putting a bunch of angry noise into the world and create something beautiful for the world instead. Yep. MY opinion. Oh, yes, I get to comment because this is a comment box and you did ask for what people’s opinions were. You can reply if you like, of course, it’s your blog. I won’t be back.
Janice is the reason why so many so many reviewers have quit, and that is ultimately very bad for authors. Since I am an author, I feel like even Janice has to stick a sock in it and let me say that without disputing. Since I had my first newspaper column 37 years ago and have been in fiction publishing for 16+ years, Janice can’t really dispute my opinion.
Personally, I think this was a fair and balanced review. You expressed your opinion, explained your reasons for it, and ultimately a 3 star review is a good review in my book. People who hate something don’t take the time to write up a thoughtful article about it. Thank you for the work you put into your reviews.
Sandra Ruttan @sandraruttan
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Thank you for the thoughtful comment. My goal is definitely never to trash an author’s work; only to express my opinion and let others know so they can form their own opinions.
I hope Janice is a troll and not actually serious because, damn, imagine being in her head. She needs a hug 🙂
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