‘The Women of the West are alive within the pages of a great book.’ 

Welcome to the first of my Book Reviews.

I had the honor of reviewing the Advanced Readers Copy (ARC) of this wonderfully written book by Author, Kathleen Morris. We met in San Antonio, Texas, in October 2019 at the 25th Anniversary of Women Writing the West conference. I much admire and enjoy her style of writing. Therefore, I chose her two books for my first review.

In The Transition of Chastity James, due out in Fall, 2020, Kathleen weaves an excellent story of the hardships independent women in the late 1870’s West could experience. You will not be disappointed. Her characters come to life within the pages of this book.

Falling in love with the characters was easy because of how Ms. Morris has them interact. This was a page-turner you will not want to put down once you start reading. Descriptions of scenery and life in the West are easily visualized, along with the excellent dialogue between characters. Hence, the reader feels like they are actually experiencing life’s adventures with Chastity.

Born in New England, educated at Vassar, Chastity James is a headstrong woman with grit and an unstoppable, survive-at-all-costs instinct. Traveling alone to Dodge City, Kansas, to become the new Boot Hill school teacher, against her father and uncle’s wishes, she agrees to give it a year. If the life she’s chosen doesn’t go as planned, she will concede and return home. But, don’t be fooled by the imagined prim and proper façade of a teacher.

Escaping Dodge, her unexpected adventure of survival was just getting started with the help of some citizens in Dodge City called ‘unsavory characters.’ Finding love with an outcast, Chastity’s journey is an exciting western adventure with an ending that will leave you smiling.

I won’t give it away. You’ll have to read it to find out.


I highly recommend Ms. Morris’s first book, Lily of the West, The Untold Story of the Notorious “Big Nose Kate.”  A story mixed with truths, history, and fiction of Mary Katherine Haroney, a Hungarian Immigrant who made her way at an early age from Europe to the United States, on to Mexico and then Dodge City in the  later 1800s. Educated, refined, and fiercely independent, Kate was an adventurous woman, becoming the belle of Dodge City and the love of Dr. John Henry (Doc) Holliday. Befriending the Earp’s and Bat Masterson, she witnessed the volatile times of the early West and Dodge City with fortitude and well-honed skills of survival. This is another excellent ‘can’t put it down’ read.

Even if you’ve never been a fan of Western reads, you will be after reading these two books. The characters and storyline in both books will draw you in, quickly changing your mind about Historical Westerns.

If you enjoy what you have read here, please share my website. And, thank you for your ongoing support. As always, with any book you read, please visit Goodreads and Amazon to leave a review. The authors much appreciate your time for doing so. And, visit Women Writing the West website for more great books.


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