Treaure hunter Pearson Foster comes to Uncertain, Texas, looking for a sunken ship's cargo when he hears of a bigger prize. And he's happy to help governess Addie McCrae protect her young charge after an attempted robbery and kidnapping---because the rumored valuables are in their home! Is distraction the only danger these two will face?
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This is an intriguing and fascinating historical romance set in the early 1900's, beginning briefly in Pretoria, South Africa, and then travelling to Marshall, Texas where much of the story takes place. This story spotlights two swarthy, handsome, and sometimes cocky treasure hunters; a pretty, young woman leaving home for the first time to work as a governess in Marshall; an unusual and challenging boy of five years; and swindling ruthless villains who get more emboldened and dangerous as the story progresses. These and other various interesting and extremely likeable characters all possess incredible character depth in this story!
I loved experiencing the camaraderie and banter between Pearson Foster and best mate Theo, who are the story's treasure hunters. Pearson, having his heart set on searching for the shipwrecked steamer, Mittie Stephens, and her cargo of gold, ends up travelling to Caddo Lake with Theo to take up their search there. Not long after arriving, Pearson first encountered Adelina (Addie) McRae upon her arrival in nearby Marshall with her mother, having just arrived there for the position of Cedric's (Ceddy's) governess. And from the very beginning the atmosphere between Pearson and Addie was electric! Addie found Pearson discomforting and yet intriguing, infuriating yet titillating, with odd hair yet handsome! I longed for more encounters between these two and I wasn't disappointed. The captivating and intense energy between these two leading characters continued throughout. I also absolutely adored Ceddy, Addie's young charge, an unusual boy who was orphaned from his missionary parents and now living with his Aunt Priscilla in Marshall. He is actually autistic but because Autism wasn't a diagnosed condition back then, Ceddy was frightening at times, and his confronting behavior difficult for people to understand and accept. Having an autistic child myself, I was so impressed at how Marcia managed to portray this little autistic boy so insightfully and realistically. And I deeply felt little Ceddy's engulfing fear each time he saw or encountered the villains Denny and Charlie, as they attempted to get to him and his own personal secret treasure.
Hunter's Prize also explores the theme of communication... or lack thereof, and the resulting consequences. But then there's also a gentle but compelling message about finding your way back to God after a terrible tragedy and learning to trust in Him again.
This book is the third in the Backwoods Brides series, but can very much be read as a stand-alone book... although I hasten to add, you'd really be doing yourself a dis-service to miss out on Marcia's other two brilliant stories in the series! Marcia Gruver tells a story that keeps you reading, and even when you're not, it will cause you to think about it... until you give in and pick it up again!!
lIn this book three of Marcia’s series Backwoods Brides, she takes us from the dusty ox trails of Pretoria, South Africa to the unpredictable weather of Marshall, Texas, to introduce us to a beautiful and challenging child by the name of Cedric Whitfield. Ceddy’s parents were missionaries to Africa that were recently killed, so Ceddy finds himself being transported back to the States to live with a spinster great-aunt, Priscilla Whitfield. Too bad no one realizes the evil that will follow dear little Ceddy all the way home.
When Priscilla realizes that Ceddy is going to be more than she can handle, she writes to an old friend in hopes that his granddaughter will come to live with her to be Ceddy’s governess. Knowing his granddaughter can’t take the position Dr. Thomas Mooney forwards the letter from Miss Whitfield to Addie McRae. Addie feels this is a job for her, as she has a way with children. Little does she know this will be a life changing experience for her.
When Addie and her mother arrive in Marshall they bump into two young men, Pearson Foster and Theodoro Bernardi, who are determined to help them with their bags. Addie is appalled to hear her mother accept the young men’s invitation to lunch. While eating Addie finds it hard to keep her eyes off Pearson, he is very handsome and there is something about him that appeals to her, but is he as good as her mother feels he is?
When Addie meets Ceddy for the first time, she realizes he has more problems than she feels she can handle, but her mother persuades Addie to stay for a while and try to help him. After a short time Addie begins to see an improvement in Ceddy’s disposition, until one afternoon he comes up missing and when they find him they discover a cut on his throat and various bruises on him. Who would dare to harm a child, especially one a sweet as Ceddy? Could the person be someone they know?
Pearson Foster, treasure hunter, feels he has finally found the girl of his dreams, if only she would return his feelings. But through a misunderstanding Addie believes Pearson is not worth wasting her time on. How will he persuade her that there is more to him than just an opportunist looking for treasure? When Pearson shows up at the same church as Addie, Priscilla and Ceddy attend will they see he really is a sincere person? When Priscilla allows him into her home will something happen that makes her change her mind about him and will she be horrified to think he may not be as harmless as she thought? When the evil that has followed Ceddy from halfway around world finally shows up will Pearson be the one who will lead it straight to Ceddy or will he be the one who will rescue Ceddy from it?
I was intrigued by the way Marcia described Ceddy’s autism, which back then had not been named, and the way Addie interacted with Ceddy. I also loved the descriptions of the area where Pearson was searching for the treasure. This is the first book I have read in this series and now I want to go back and read the others. Thank you Marcia, a job well done!
I was given an Arc from the publisher and NetGally in exchange for my honest opinion.
A story of treasures of the greatest kind - love from the heart. Addie's Mom loves her enough to let go and leave her with Pricella as a governess to Ceddy. Pearson loved his family so much he guarded his heart. He struggled with forgiving himself for living when he lost them all. But he found his way back to God's love and as a a bonus found Addie's love. Ceddy showed him where real treasure was. He feel in love with the little guy. Ceddy gives up his diamond to save Addie's pendant because of his love for her. A story of love and forgivenss like none I've read. It's coupled with adventure and treasures of the heart.
Since Addie is old enough to leave her family, she is ecstatic when she is passed a letter from a friend requesting a teacher to move to Texas to care for a special child. Today, such a child has a diagnosis of Autistic. Addie has never seen a child with such problems, and it takes all her skills to deal with Ceddy Whitfield. Addie relies on the Lord to help her help Ceddy.
Ceddy Whitfield’s parents learned to handle his issues, but when they are killed in an accident, he moves to Texas to live with an elderly aunt. Before leaving South Africa, he picks up a diamond. A couple of evil men realize that Ceddy is holding a valuable diamond in the rough, so they track him to Texas to steal it from him.
Pearson Foster’s family drowned in the hurricane in Galveston in 1900, since then he has drifted through life as a fortune hunter. He moves to Lake Caddo, near Marshall, Texas, to find the wreck of the Mittie Stephens. Pearson, Addie, and Ceddy lives cross in East Texas, along with villains, townfolk, and Ceddy’s great aunt. Fun, engaging read for those who enjoy historical Christian romances.
Marcia Gruver in her new book, “Hunter’s Prize” Book Three in the Backwoods Brides series published by Barbour Publishing Inc. takes us to Texas in 1904.
From the back cover: A little boy’s treasure puts Addie McRae’s life in grave danger.
When Addie left her sheltered Mississippi life to become a governess to Ceddy Whitfield, she never dreamed she’d be undertaking her most challenging role yet. But after a brutal attack on her peculiar charge and a break-in that threatens the serenity Whitfield Manor, Addie’s coveted new life is on a dangerous course. What could a little boy have that thieves are so eager to find?
Pearson Foster arrives on the misty banks of Lake Caddo determined to haul up the wreckage of the doomed steamer Mittie Stephens along with her cargo of gold, unaware that young Ceddy hides a valuable treasure of his own. Then, accused of a terrible act of cruelty against the boy, Pearson stands to lose something even more precious than hidden fortune. But would he harm a child and the woman he grows to love in his quest for mere riches?
Pearson is a treasure hunter, Ceddy has a treasure that others a looking for and Addie looks to Pearson to help protect both her and the boy. “Hunter’s Prize” is great fun to read. It is a nice romance and, while it takes place in 1904, it is relevant. This book is all about communication and how badly we can mess it up. The boy is Autistic and cannot communicate which leads to certain events, Pearson can communicate but he lands in trouble anyway. There is the theme of treasure and finding the greatest treasure of them all. Ms. Gruver has a great way of telling the story and moving it along at a nice pace. Her characters are wonderful and she gives them life and unique voices. I liked this book a lot and it was a fitting ending to this trilogy. Well done.
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Barbour Publishing Inc. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Young Cedric Whitfield (nickname Ceddy) is a bit of a challenge to all who encounter him. His Aunt Jane Beale accompanies Ceddy from Pretoria, South Africa to Texas. Pearson Foster and Theo Bernardi fellow treasure hunters are in search of the gold from past shipwrecks and a known legend. Addie McRae (daughter to Tiller and Mariah McRae) took on the care and guidance of Ceddy in place of Jane. Can Addie break the silence that surrounds her? Could love be dawning on the horizon willing to capture a treasure for the heart?
Always entertaining describes what you can expect from the authors novels and this one is no exception. Although most of the characters and situations are different from the previous other two in the series it could qualify as a perfect stand alone novel. The storyline is a combination of romance and suspense with a few twists. Dialogue and scenery were well executed in this inspiring read. I was able to connect with the well developed characters and would recommend this book to others! Thanks to Barbour Publishing and Netgalley for the ARC copy for my review.
This book is number three in the Backwoods Bride series. Each story is unique and can be read on its own. This particular story is about Addie. Addie decides it is time to leave her home and chooses a job as a governess. She sure gets more then she bargained for!
Ceddy Whitfield has a secret and others want to find it out. This little boy plays an important part in the story and makes this book very interesting. I really liked how the boy played just as important a role as the two main adult characters.
I enjoyed the treasure hunt, the romance and especially the setting. You can tell the author does a lot of research when writing her books. The setting is written is such a way that you can not miss the historical significance. I thought the detail really helped make the story believable.
How the author slips in a Christian theme is brilliant. You can read some books and it feels like the characters relationship with the Lord is written in after just so it can be called a Christian fiction book. This book, however, makes the spiritual growth of the characters an intricate part of the story.
I gave this book 4/5 stars because although the story was historically accurate the plot was sluggish at parts.
I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for the copy of this book I enjoyed reading. I gave an honest review based on my opinion of what I read.
Hunter's Prize is a multifaceted story, it brings together characters that are so different you would have never imagined the connection. It is almost like in a crazy quilt, the patches of cloth is brilliantly sewn together to create beauty. This story brings together Ceddy a boy who just recently lost his parents, Addie a young woman wanting to fly from her parents nest, Pearson a man daunted by a terrible accident, and Priscilla a wry woman with a quick wit. Like that crazy quilt you would have never imagined the characters together until they were so beautifully written in this book.
I will admit when I first started reading the book I went to the back of the cover several times to see if this was actually the book I was supposed to be reviewing. The beginning for me was a bit confusing because I was expecting to first see Addie the main character, when I didn't I was slightly confused by that. After the first couple of pages though, the book took it's hold on me and I couldn't put it down. Marcia Gruver does a great job at describing the Autistic Spectrum Disorder in Ceddy the little boy, and I really did appreciate the care and sensitivity in how she wrote. Addie and Pearson's relationship was fun to see and I thought it was fun to see Pearson's perseverance. So dear readers if you're looking for a romance/mystery/faith filled book Hunter's Prize is for you. *This book was given to me via netgalley for my honest opinion and I honestly gave it -the jesusbookgirl.blogspot.com
The year is 1904 in Marcia Gruver’s latest novel Hunter’s Prize. You will travel with Addie McRae from her home in Mississippi to Marshall, Texas to begin a job as governess to Cedric Whitfield. Cedric is a young boy who struggles with autism. Having recently lost both parents in an accident, his Aunt Priscilla is looking for someone who can help guide him through his challenges in life. Addie hopes she will fill this role in his life. Soon after Addie arrives in Marshall, she meets Pearson Foster. He is a treasure hunter visiting Marshall in search of a lost treasure onboard a sunken steamer. Addie and Pearson are drawn to one another and the adventure begins. Cedric himself is carrying a treasure around himself. He has an obsession with collecting rocks and gemstones. In the effort of collecting these rocks, an uncut diamond has been added to his collection of “treasures”. A couple of thieves have followed him from South Africa in the hopes of stealing this treasure from him. As Addie and Pearson’s relationship grows, will they be able to protect Cedric from the danger coming his way?
Hunter's Prize by Marcia Gruver Backwoods Brides Book 3 I found this to be a really well written book and excellent story. It mostly centers on treasure and a young autistic boy, Cedric Whitfield. While in South Africa Ceddy's parents die. As his aunt comes to bring him to London he finds a rock...he collects all types of rocks and gems. The men guiding them, Denny Currie and Charlie Pickering, realize it was a valuable rock and they plan to head to Ceddy's final destination, Marshall, Texas, where Ceddy will live with his great aunt Priscilla.
Addie McRae has parents that love her but have been overprotective. When she has an opportunity to leave Canton, Mississippi and move to Marshall, Texas to be a governess for a young lad, she decides to go for it. After seeing Ceddy in action she don't know that this was the right choice for her. She has always been able to do well with children and even taming feral animals so her mother suggests to give it a chance.
Pearson Foster and Theo Bernardi head out from Galveston to Marshall after hearing of a sunken steamer, the Mittie Stephens, that went down with a load of gold. Pearson had been searching for the Jean Lafitte treasure for years to no avail. They meet Addie and their mother and carry their luggage for them and they are invited to lunch with the ladies. Later they end up hiring Denny and Charlie to help them.
I enjoyed how circumstances brought all these different people to Marshall. What is really unique is that Ceddy can't communicate with words but Marcia lets us see into his head. That he is highly intelligent and knows what is going on around him...he just cannot verbally tell people. Also it seems that Pearson gets misunderstood several times in the book. You hurt for him as people he has befriended think the worst of him. Adventure, romance and much more.
Raider's Heart is book 1 and Bandit's Hope is book 2 in this series. Bandit's Hope is the story of Addie's parents, Tiller & Mariah McRae. **Book received through NetGalley for review.