AUTHOR: Amanda Cabot
Catherine Whitfield is sure that she will never again be able to trust anyone in the medical profession after the town doctor's excessive bleeding treatments killed her mother. Despite her loneliness and her broken heart, she carries bravely on as Cimarron Creek's dutiful schoolteacher, resigned to a life without love or family, a life where dreams rarely come true.
Austin Goddard is a newcomer to Cimarron Creek. Posing as a rancher, he fled to Texas to protect his daughter from a dangerous criminal. He's managed to keep his past as a surgeon a secret. But when Catherine Whitfield captures his heart, he wonders how long he will be able to keep up the charade.
Dreams play an important role in this story, making it title appropriate. Catherine’s nightmare, which begins the story, seems to be more than “just a dream,” but she has no idea what to make of it. Another character experiences a similar dream, but without the nightmare aspect. I’ve had some mysterious dreams in the past and found this aspect of the story intriguing, not uncomfortable. Eventually the meanings become clear, and both dreamers decide they were gifts from God—not necessarily pleasant, but gifts nonetheless.
Catherine is easy to admire, especially her strength and compassion as she deals with her students. She’s obviously extremely intelligent as shown by her ability to read medical books and use the information correctly. Her one failing is the inability to forgive the doctor who treated (mistreated) her beloved mother. The way God worked through circumstances felt realistic, and I enjoyed her journey to wholeness and freedom.
Austin shows his heroism by leaving everything familiar in order to protect his daughter from an evil man and yet daring to risk all by caring for those in need. His secrets were kept for the best reasons, but secrets have a way of revealing themselves eventually. How he responded to evil and to abused people impressed me.
There is violence in this tale; I had to remind myself of the setting when I became angry at the law for being unable to protect children from abuse. I’m sure the story is true to its era. I enjoyed A Borrowed Dream and award it four stars. If you enjoy historical novels with clearly defined good and evil characters, you’ll enjoy this book.
Disclaimer: I was given an advanced copy by the publisher. All opinions are my own.