Norah Barclay met her true love at the end of a long life. She held his hand as he died, blaming God for not letting them meet when they were young enough to truly be together. Suddenly, Norah gets a rare second chance.
She's 18 again, back in 1874, at a point in her life when a single choice could change everything. This time, however, she has the wisdom of her old age and past mistakes. Instead of taking a trip to Europe, Norah accompanies her father to Texas on a trip to the ranch he partly owns, knowing Egan Corey will be there.
is the foreman of the Barclay-Engles ranch. Even though he considers
himself a confirmed bachelor, Egan feels something when he looks into
Norah's old eyes. He's scared, but he realizes he is drawn to her, to
the point of reciting Shakespeare under her window.
Knowing how Egan's life was ruined by a forced marriage and a child that was not his, Norah is determined not to let it happen again. Meanwhile, another woman is desperate to get married and has chosen Egan as her target.
While the time period and landscape are almost completely ignored, this does not detract too greatly from the story. Anne Manning does a wonderful job of making Norah wise beyond her years and portraying how one might react to such a second chance. Manning also creates doubt about Norah's future, however destined it may be, with Egan. "Ripples" certainly makes the reader wonder exactly how much one single choice affects an entire lifetime.
--J. Anne Mauck-- Inscriptions Magazine
Inscriptions Magazine (Vol. 4 Issue 17)