Thursday, September 15, 2011

An Oldie, but a Goodie….Return to Red Castle by Dorothy Keddington

Publisher’s note: Red Castle ... an ancient citadel of wine-red stone in the heart of Utah's primitive High Uinta Mountains. Hidden away near its rocky base, a small plane lies twisted and broken.
The four men ... desperate, ruthless, will stop at nothing to retrieve the plane's valuable cargo,
but their only clue to its location are the words ... Red Castle.
Jesse Chisholm ... rugged, lonely, one of the new breed of modern Mountain Men. As a geologist for the Forest Service, he calls the wilderness his home and only the mountains know the secrets of his heart.
Melissa Heydon ... spirited, young, in love with life, the mountains, and Jesse Chisholm.

My Review:  When I was a young woman, about fourteen or fifteen years old, I spent hours wandering the aisles of my local library. I loved to read anything that hinted at the notion of romance and I was simply enamored by the thought of being in LOVE. One rainy afternoon, I stumbled across a section of more mature romance reads. Being young, I was intrigued, but when I stepped to the counter to check out my stack of books the local librarian kindly shook her head, pointed to the return cart, and replied, “Why don’t I help you find something a bit more appropriate, hmm?”  Crestfallen and a little embarrassed, I placed my books on the metal shelf and scowled as she came around the counter. She placed her hand on my shoulder and led the way toward the back of the library. She paused and scanned the shelves that sagged with hundreds of titles then thoughtfully, she pulled a worn book from the self.  The protective, cellophane cover looked less than appealing and I stared at the dog-eared book enthusiastically. Her “trust me, you’ll love it” fell on hardened ears. Needless-to-say, I checked out the book and left the library in a huff. When I returned home that evening I tossed the book on my dresser and it sat there for days, buried under a stack of over-due homework and silly notes I’d collected from friends at school. Then one boring Saturday afternoon, I finally grabbed the book and opened to the first page. I read the forward and was immediately hooked. I finished Return to Red Castle by Dorothy Keddington in one afternoon and I closed the book with a sigh. It quickly became one of my favorite books and I read this book at least once a year. In fact, I just finished it again last week. Keddington spins an amazing story of intrigue and suspense set among the majestic background of the High Uintas in Utah. The story opens with Melissa Heydon, a young woman, who travels with her brother and his buddy to visit old family friends in Utah-- the Chisloms. Missy recounts her first visit when she was just a small girl of eight. Jesse Chislom, nineteen and recently widowed, is home for the summer. When the eight- year- old Missy and the nineteen- year- old Jesse meet they become fast friends. Over the years they spend many summers together, but as Melissa grows and changes into a young woman so does her relationship change with Jesse. Years pass and their friendship fades. Jesse remarries (or so she thinks) and life moves on.  Now, in her twenties, Missy returns to the Chislom’s mountain home, hoping to bury the memories of Jesse and the bond they once shared. However, things never go as planned and when Jesse and Melissa meet once again, her life is forever changed. She soon discovers that Jesse holds a secret that could tear them apart. Then to make matters worse, a hike in the mountains turns into a deadly race against dangerous drug runners. Keddington’s ability to describe the setting and emotions leaves the reader fully engaged. Her stories are full of suspense, intrigue, action and just the right amount of “appropriate” (clean) romance. I give Return to Red Castle 4.5 out of 5 stars.


Misty Moncur said...

I've never read this! I'll have to get my hands on a copy. And what a wise(/mean) librarian!

Cami Checketts said...

I loved this book at fifteen also! I should read it again.

Jewel's Gems said...

I love, love, love all things Dorothy Keddington! I own three of her books and they are starting to fall apart because I've read them so much:-)