A friend of mine who is an airline pilot heard about this book at a party. He got the NOOK version, read it, and when he and I connected for a drink spent most of the time raving about it, and told me I HAD to read it. I generally don't even pick up a romance, and am not an avid devotee of westerns, though I have read a few like Lonesome Dove and Centennial and liked them, particularly Centennial for it's wonderful historical reference.
I was hesitant, but this buddy is macho all the way, former military fighter pilot, football star, and a big hulk of a guy. I bought the paperback.
All I can say is that it may be one of the best books of any class I have read. This novel made me remember why I am proud to be an American, got the juices flowing with well crafted love scenes that are skillfully integrated as important parts of the characters and the story, kept me on edge with action and foreshadow, and gave me a real feel for what it was like to be headed toward the frontier way back when with all sorts of very interesting historical details from weaponry, dress, and travel to intriguing European attitude and background of the day. The descriptive scenes of various locations, landscapes, and even rooms literally created rich images in my mind. I felt I was right there watching the chapters unfold trying to warn the characters of danger, cheering them on on their journeys, or feeling the heat of their passion.
I am converted and addicted! I am buying a number to give to friends, and one for my girl friend. Bring on the next book!