Sarah Marshall never wanted to leave Chicago and head west on a wagon train bound for the New Mexico Territory, but she wasn’t given a choice. The rugged trail is no place for her ailing aunt—and tending oxen and gathering buffalo chips is no job for a sophisticated young woman. All Sarah wants is to see her aunt safely to Santa Fe, and then she plans to return home to the Windy City.
Ethan Harper, the youngest of three adult brothers, enjoys a peaceful existence helping run his family’s stage stop in Kansas, along the Santa Fe Trail. Only one cloud continues to darken his horizon—guilt over his part in the tragic death of his oldest brother’s wife. The only acceptable penance Ethan can think of is to find Aaron a new wife, and then his two children would have a mother.
A series of misfortunes strands Sarah and her aunt at the Harpers’ Stage Stop, where they depend upon the generosity of the kindhearted Harper family. Soon, the presence of an attractive young woman, however unversed in the ways of prairie living, wreaks havoc on the well-ordered lives of the Harper brothers. Ethan grasps at this chance to get Aaron a wife, but the more interest Aaron shows in Sarah, the less Ethan likes it. And Josh wants his chance at wooing her, too. Will any of the brothers prove himself worthy to Sarah? Or will she finally head home to Chicago, leaving behind a trail of broken hearts?