Cross the Line by Rie McGaha

By Ekta R. Garg

December 14, 2011

Rated: Borrow it

In post-Civil-War America, a young girl fights her circumstances to live life on her own terms, including marrying a former slave, having his children, and starting a ranch all by herself.  She finds moral support and internal strength for all these tasks and more from her black husband who knows the real-life implications of loving her and marrying her.  He does it anyway because for them both love transcends race.  Author Rie McGaha offers readers this baseline story in her historical romance novel Cross the Line.

When the book opens Carrie Anne Robertson is burying her father.  After soldiers ravage their home in Charleston, South Carolina, and kill her mother and one of her sisters, Carrie’s father moves his remaining two children to Indian Territory close to Arkansas.  There he builds a small cabin far from any other people, and he begins to rebuild his life.  But first his youngest daughter dies from the flu, and then a few years after building the cabin he also succumbs to the harsh conditions and passes away.  Leaving Carrie to live alone.

Carrie tries to reconcile herself to her new life when one day she hears noises outside the cabin and warily explores its source.  She finds Noah Mosely bracing himself with the trunk of a tree.  He is badly hurt, and despite her initial distrust of him she helps him heal and nurses his injured leg.  And without realizing it, the two fall in love.

If Carrie spent her early life among Southern high society, Noah grew up as a slave and considered the lowest common denominator by mankind.  But determined to prove the equation of his life adds up to so much more than just the color of his skin, Noah manages to escape and finds refuge with the Osage Indians.  And his fate brings him to Carrie.

Author McGaha’s novel details Carrie and Noah’s story, beginning with their initial meeting and taking the tale several generations forward.  McGaha’s technique of favoring narration over dialogue helps the story move fast.  Readers will live through the majority of the trials and triumphs Carrie and Noah experience in their life together.  While at times so much narration may leave readers wanting more interaction in the foreground between characters, McGaha’s pleasant style keeps readers entertained and clicking through pages until the end.  The story structure lends itself to a somewhat predictable end, but McGaha keeps surprising her readers along the way to the foregone conclusion.

I recommend Cross the Line foremost for those who enjoy historical romances but also for anyone who enjoys a sweet story with a guaranteed ending and an enjoyable literary journey.

***

What the ratings mean:

Bookmark it!–Read this book and then buy it and add it to to your own collection.  It’s definitely worth it!

Borrow it–Check this one out from the library; it’s a worthy read, but think twice before spending your hard-earned money on it.

Bypass it–Free time is precious.  Don’t spend it on this book!

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