by Heidi Betts

January 2003
ISBN: 0-8439-5073-0
Reviewer Graphic Button Leisure Books
Mass Market Paperback

David and Hannah first meet at the Purgatory Home For Unwanted Children in Purgatory, Texas. David took an immediate liking to the frightened little blue-eyed blond girl when she first came to the orphanage. He was always there to comfort her especially at night when her nightmares were the worst. David was adopted by the Walkers and left the orphanage. Hannah wasnít so fortunate and grew up there. More than 10 years have passed. Hannah is all grown up and is now the schoolmarm in Purgatory. David left Purgatory several years ago to return to his motherís Comanche village to learn about his people and his heritage.

Hannah is in her cabin grading papers one night when she hears a noise outside her door. Going to investigate she finds a wounded David and a young boy who turns out to be Davidís nephew Little Bear. David has brought Little Bear to Hannah because he knows she will watch out for him until he can return with the boyís mother, Bright Eyes.

Things donít go as planned and Little Bear goes after his uncle thinking he can help him rescue his mother. Hannah has little choice but to go with the boy since she canít convince him to wait for Davidís return. Soon all three are on an adventure none of them fully expected.

David is in love with Hannah but resists his true feelings because after all he is a half-breed and no respectable white woman would fall for a half-breed. Hannah has growing feelings for David and canít understand his reluctance. She has never looked down on him because of his heritage and it infuriates her that he thinks less of himself because of it.

Hannahís Half-Breed is the third story by Heidi Betts to take place in Purgatory, Texas. Ms. Betts has a true gift for writing about the old west and making it come alive for the reader. She gets better and better with each new tale she spins.

This is the first time Ms. Betts has incorporated a character with Indian heritage as a main character in one of her books and I think she has done a fine job of showing Davidís insecurities of being of mixed heritage. Hannah and David make a fantastic couple. It takes the strong willed Hannah to make David see that not all people see him as just a half-breed. She sees him as just the boy she fell in love with so many years ago.

Over the last couple of years Ms. Betts has become a name synonymous with the telling of a good western story for me. Her characters are vivid, well thought out and a pleasure to get to know. Each new book gets better than her last and Hannahís Half-Breed was her best yet. I look forward to her next release.

Reviewed in February 2003 by Barbara.

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