No Roof But Heaven

Jeanne Williams, Author
Jeanne Williams, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (450p) ISBN 978-0-312-04016-1
Reviewed on: 03/01/1990
Release date: 03/01/1990
This lightweight frontier romance by veteran novelist Williams ( Lady of No Man's Land ) features yet another of her strong-willed, intelligent and doughty heroines. Fleeing her stultifying Ohio hometown and her grief at losing both her father and her fiance in the Civil War, teacher Susanna Alden takes a post at the Mason-Dixon School outside of Dodge City, Kans. The lingering bitterness between North and South, the tensions between ranger and homesteader and the antipathy of some settlers toward a new wave of immigrants are typified by the residents of the prairie community. Narrow-minded school trustee Saul Prade embodies the worst aspects of the recent conflict, while Susanna and Matt Rawdon, the young doctor she comes to love, possess the strength to overcome the war's physical and emotional devastation. Numerous minor characters and the too-obvious intrusion of historical facts slow the pace of the plot, which otherwise veers toward melodramatic confrontations and overwritten love scenes. Predictably, the book ends with a surge of community spirit and the resolution of all romantic entanglements. Reader's Digest Condensed Books selection. (Apr.)
The Best Books, Emailed Every Week
Tip Sheet!