When her parents died, Molly McGregor did what she needed to survive in New York City all alone. She took a job for a well respected banker, but made a discovery that put her life in danger. Now in 1882 she is fleeing New York for the western frontier, Molly makes the desperate decision to become a mail order bride in Tombstone, Arizona Territory. She doesn't hope for much, just that her new husband will be strong enough to protect her from the danger she fears will follow.
Ben King was too busy making his fortune in silver to worry about a wife or family. Now he's rich, well known, owns half the town of Tombstone, and is utterly alone. When his heart becomes entangled with his best friend's new wife, he decides drastic action is required and contracts a mail order bride. He requests someone plain, someone simple to warm his hearth and home, someone he can be sure won't rouse his passion or complicate his life. He's tired of fancy women chasing him for his money, and even more tired of hoping any woman could be different. He doesn't believe in true love, and doesn't want the complications that would come with it. He doesn't have time for complicated. He has an empire to run.
But Molly is a shock to his senses. She doesn't care about his money or his fame. All she wants from him is a safe haven, security, and a new last name. Ben tries to keep his heart out of danger, but danger seems to be Molly's middle name. When a rich and powerful enemy chases his beautiful new bride halfway across the country to extract vengeance, Ben discovers his heart is not nearly as cold as he'd hoped. Their passion fires hot, hot enough to kill...more than hot enough to burn them both.
"Mail Order Baron" by Cynthia Woolf is a historical romance about a mail order bride. After her arrival, Molly discovers that Ben, her husband, is in love with his friend's wife. Of course, Molly is in danger and that is the reason for her becoming a mail order bride to begin with. At times I liked Molly and other times, she annoyed me a bit. It seemed she expected instant true love. Ben is likable, even if he is hung up on someone else. Of course, the danger helps to bring a bit of life to the book. Unfortunately, while the story held promise, the writing style felt very stiff to me and it was, at times, a bit tough to continue. I'm glad I did as the story itself isn't terrible. Overall, not a bad read but not overly exciting or memorable either. (received copy from NetGalley for honest review)