by Rosalie More

ISBN: 1-931696-33-0
Reviewer Graphic Button Novel Books Inc.

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August 1839, New Mexico. In the darkness, two men and a young boy hide bagfuls of silver in a small cave in the mountains. They've decided to hide the silver, because they know bandits are following them. Once hidden, the men prepare to leave, but the bandits who were trailing them capture the boy and only one man, K.D. Axtell, escapes. The other man, Fergus, is grievously wounded.

K.D. sees his son taken by bandits. He knows that now Fergus's wife, farm and silver mine are now in terrible danger, and he has to do everything within his power to save his son. But in those days, the Wild West was a lawless place, where the one with the fastest guns and strongest army was the winner. All K.D. had were his wits, his horse, and his pistol. What he didn't know was that help was on its way in the form of a slender redhead coming to New Mexico in search of her brother, Fergus.

Enter Honor McCrae. Stubborn, fearless (well, except for claustrophobia) and running away from trouble back home in Virginia. She's a well-born lady, with a lovely dress, impeccable chignon and a teeny tiny revolver in her velvet purse. K.D. knows that if she makes it to Fergus's farm, she'll be in terrible danger, so, he barges into her carriage and tries to intimidate her into going back home. He even takes her purse and revolver. What he doesn't realise, is that she can't go back home. Honor, terrified but not the least bit daunted, goes into Santa Fe and tries to sell some jewelry. All her money was in her purse, and now she's penniless. Once in the town she manages to get K.D. arrested, and prepares to go to her brother's farm. But K.D. is having nothing to do with jail he snatches a revolver, and taking Honor prisoner, makes his escape from the town.

Now Honor is thrown on a horse and galloped madly across the countryside with the man she takes to be a terrible outlaw. Of course, K.D. could have told her everything in the beginning, but why ruin a perfectly good misunderstanding? K.D spends the rest of the book trying to save his son, Fergus's farm and the silver mine, while Honor (who still thinks he's one of the bad guys) gets in his way every way possible. Once at the farm, Honor finds herself imprisoned by the real bandits. She escapes, not once but several times, thanks to a maze of underground tunnels. When K.D. isn't saving her skin, she's saving his and learning that K.D. the outlaw can be K.D. the hero. Of course, they fall in love, and the love scene when they're both locked in a storeroom is quite memorable! To say any more would be giving away the story. However, there is plenty of action, excitement and crawling through dark tunnels! I could easily picture this book as a movie, with the sprawling farm full of loathsome bandits as the setting, and a silver mine worked by kidnapped children as slaves adding poignancy to the tale. It was a fast, enjoyable read, and I think anyone who loves westerns will enjoy Honor Among Thieves immensely.

Reviewed in July 2002 by Jennifer.

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