The Bride Quilt
by Pamela Quint Chambers, historical (1999)
Zebra, $5.99, ISBN 0-8217-6214-1

The Bride Quilt is one of those stories that only happens in romance novels. 19-year old silly girl runs away from her nice home in 1845 midwest America to escape unwanted marriage to shallow silly men by becoming a mail-order bride. The mail-order entourage is a disaster and she ends up running away from horny bastards into a cabin owned by Sam Spencer, mountain man with five kids he inherited from dead sister.

If silly Madeline Preston thinks that her suitors back home are boring and ill-mannered, she has another thing coming in grouchy, rough, uncouth Sam. But obviously that's preferred to those guys back home, because, er, I don't know. Maybe we can say he has a bigger dingdong than anyone else around. And out of the blue, our impetuous, runaway-to-be-a-mail-order-bride-without-telling-anyone heroine turns out to be a kind and understanding June Cleaver mommy to those brats, all the while still being able to turn on the immaturity keg to have the hero getting exasperated with her all over again.

So which is which, Ms Chambers? Madeline the June Cleaver in disguise or the immature chit? You can't be a good mother to the kids and a stupid addlepated ninny to the hero at the same time. And heroines like this one shouldn't be even described as "courageous", much less "intelligent".

File this one as a readable but vexing and doesn't make much sense kind of story custom-tailored for so-so averageness.

Rating: 64

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