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Debbie Macombers encore presentation of her Heart of Texas series features the entire cast of Promise, Texas that fans have met throughout the six-book series. Now, in just 380 pages, Ms. Macomber tackles four new stories beginning with newcomer Annie Applegate and attempts to bring new readers up to speed on all of the characters pasts.

Fresh from a messy divorce, Annie needs a new start, and her friend Dr. Jane Patterson thinks Promise is just what the doctor ordered. So she makes the move and opens a bookstore.

The towns veterinarian Lucas Porter, a widower, needs help raising his young daughters and thinks a marriage of convenience with Annie is just the ticket. But when sparks fly, Annie might just get what she wants out of this marriage.

The town sheriff is smitten with the new elementary school teacher, but his adoration always seems to lead to accidents, and it might take a small miracle to get her to see him in a different light.

Meanwhile, convict Richard Weston, who has brought nothing but heartache and harm to his family and friends, is up to something again. And hes not above using people to get what he wants.

Although its very enjoyable to see what has become of old favorites, fans might be frustrated by the large amount of backstory included and the lesser amount of detail and development for the new stories (as compared to the detail throughout the earlier books of the series). But newcomers shouldnt be shy! PROMISE does deliver a pleasing ending and the backstory is interesting for a first-time reader. (Oct., 384 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Debbie Richardson