Book Review – “A Matter of Heart” by Tracie Peterson

As I had read a couple of other books by Tracie Peterson and immensely enjoyed them, I was excited to read and review this one. The story sounded interesting, and I do love western novels.

Texas born and raised Jessica Atherton is a wealthy young woman whose heart was broken when the man she intended to marry wedded another. But her world is upended when two men come into her life and both manage to stir her heart. Harrison Gable is a rich young lawyer who intends to travel the world and live a life of opulence. His ambitions match Jessica’s dreams, but her heart has begun to change.

Austin Todd, former Secret Service agent, enjoys working now as a Texas Ranger cattle inspector. But learning of forged gold certificates and missing printing plates, he’s drawn back into the world of intrigue and agrees to help solve the case. Austin is well-thought-of and admired in the community. Jessica is drawn to his kind nature and the unspoken pain she sees in his eyes. Will Jessica choose financial security or follow her heart?
The characters were good, though I was slightly confused after not reading the first two books in this series. But to be honest, I did not like Jessica that much. Sure, she did change and wasn’t so selfish, but something about her just seemed really shallow, even after she changed. I struggled to connect with her in a way that I don’t usually encounter when reading a book. I did like Austin a lot, and thought he was a strong character. My one complaint was that he and Jessica seemed to move awfully fast. Declaring their love when they really didn’t know each other was really not something that made me like them or the story any more.
The plotline was definitely lacking. I was so confused. I am all for writing books in a series, but this seems like the sort of series that a person should be able to pick up the second or third book and not be completely confused. There were a lot of different characters and plotlines that didn’t mesh well together, and the inclusion of Harrison was just too much, especially with his very inappropriate manner.

Perhaps if I had read the first two books, which I shall soon, I might enjoy this book better. I rate “A Matter of Heart” with 3 1/2 stars out of five, and recommend it to 14 and up.

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