Author: Glynnis Campbell
Publication Date: 15 June 2013
Mathilda Hardwicke, a rebellious artist rejected by her family and New York society, heads west to Gold Rush California to make a new life for herself as a mail-order bride. When fate leaves her at the altar in Paradise Bar--a ramshackle gold camp full of ragtag miners--she's sure she's leaped out of the frying pan and into the fire.
But unbeknownst to Mattie, she has a protector. Sakote, a fierce Konkow warrior, is bound by honor to watch over the white woman. And though his tribe is threatened by the encroaching miners, he's strangely drawn to Mattie, who delights in making pictures of him and whose destiny seems entwined with his.
When a tragedy at the camp forces Sakote to steal Mattie away, she finds herself in an unfamiliar Paradise of savage wonder, and she soon discovers a forbidden love more precious than gold.
Mathilda doesn't fit in with her high society family and is an embarrassment to them, she doesn't belong in that world. Desperate to stay true to herself and escape the confines of New York society, Mattie heads to California as a mail-order bride. When she arrives in Paradise Bar, there's no fiancee waiting for her, and nothing is quite how she'd imagined it would be. But she's determined to make the best of her new situation.
Sakote is a respected Konkow warrior, who is honour-bound to protect the strange newcomer to the miners' community. Intrigued by each other and the attraction that pulls them together, Mattie and Sakote fall into a forbidden love.
Mattie is a breath of fresh air, she's very determined and a touch impetuous, but she has an indomitable spirit. I love that she's determined to be herself, she leaves behind everyone she knows and plunges into the unknown, it's very brave!
Sakote....*sigh*. I loved Sakote. I've not read many historical romances with Native American heroes, and I've clearly been missing out. He's fierce, protective and is always shirtless! As Mattie and Sakote become closer and their love grows, he's torn between his loyalty for his people and the life he could have with Mattie away from them.
Their romance was passionate and forbidden, but utterly compelling and sweet. It progressed at a very believable pace, and I was urging them towards a happy ending.
The pacing is great, there's always something happening and something to draw your interest. I loved the conflict between the miners and the Konkow. The miners were really sweet with Mattie, and I loved their protectiveness with her.
I don't know how accurate the portrayal of Native American life is in this book, but I really enjoyed that aspect of the book and found it very interesting.
Overall, Native Gold is passionate and compelling. I was thoroughly engrossed in the story and characters, and I can't wait to read the next 2 books in the trilogy!
*I received a review copy of the book from the author, for my honest opinion. Thank you!