From the story The Dangerous Journey Home formally Escape Back to Charleston

5 Star by Fiction Addition Angela on Goodreads

This historical novel set in 1867 post civil war is wonderful.

Such a fascinating time in history the author Donald Montano opened up my eyes again to how life must have been in this fastly developing era. His accuracy and research is second to none and like in his first novel it’s like being in a history lesson at times.
The story is set in troubled times when the ‘Redshirts’ in South Carolina still want slavery to remain and are making up their own rules.
These trouble makers are extorting vast sums of money from the plantation owners – if refused the owners are beaten, tortured or worse.
The story begins to introduce us to one of the most powerful backers of this group – Colonel Oscar Blaylock who has taken slave Serena his most favored mistress and she isn’t allowed to leave his side.
Serena is first introduced to us in “A stranger came among them” book one by the character Joshua.
Joshua the huge ex slave whose heart mirrors his enormous size and spirit, is desperate to rescue his love Serena who he left behind in the clutches of Blaylock in Carolina.
John Sampson our main character has made a promise to Joshua that they will rescue Selena and bring her back home to Hightree. But to do that first a plot is hatched – first they must create a powerful image of Arley.
Arley Ruttlinger the smoldering beauty who has fallen deeply for Sampson is eager to become the all rounded southern belle woman not just a rancher, horse woman that John fell in love with.
Arley is to play the role of a rich landowner who is looking to buy plantation land following the war.
Sampson tells her they all must go on a journey across country where she will travel by stagecoach, steamer and train and that is were the story begins.

This historic saga takes our imagination flying, crossing states in stagecoaches, being chased by Indian hunting parties. Stage coach hold ups, kidnapping, gunfights, cowboy pimps and brothels.
Gunfights across the Great Plains, sheriffs, murders, private detectives – ohh and did I mention lots of steamy sex, oh and for the lovers of book one there’s another sexy bath scene.
The fashions of the 1800s and how women had to make their grand entrance was really fascinating and ladies had to dress appropriately to travel by the luxury steam methods.
It was a time of luxury steam boat travel that was pure opulence and the height of fancy decadence. The hatred of the whites, the fear of the blacks.

Without giving the whole story away we travel on a journey that develops the characters we loved in book one.
I was a little disappointed that I never got further in these adventures to learning about Selena or Blaylock but that is clearly all nicely lined up by Montano in book three (An ill wind is blowing).
The story is predominately about how a John and Arley are creating personas of wealth and status that will unfold more in the next story.
I enjoyed the whole wild west travels, the story telling involved the introductions of lots of new characters that we met briefly throughout their travelers troubled journeys.
I didn’t feel that I enjoyed the story as much as book one, it’s hard to pinpoint why. Hence me giving it 3.5 – 4 stars… Maybe because some of the loose ends still haven’t been resolved?
I was desperate for characters to reach their final destination and discover more about Blaylock and his trouble causers. What will Charleston look like through Arleys eyes. I wanted to be introduced to Selena, who is under this crazy plantations clutches.
Does she still love Joshua? What does she look like?
How does she feel?
So I suppose that was my impatient frustration.
Montano really takes you on a journey across the plains of America and I can say I’m glad I didn’t have to travel with them for real.
His attention to detail is what makes his books as special as they are. Now I need to get my hands on book three. Highly recommended.

5 Star by Ellie C. on Amazon

5 Star by Lucille Homcy on Amazon

5 Star by Warbaby 43 on Amazon

5 Star by KCreader on Amazon


I will definitely read the last drop of this series.

*** Spoiler Alert***

Even if you did not read the first book, you won’t stray because of the good introduction that recaps the highlights of the previous book. The story gets you hooked even as the story develops. It was never a bore to read such a very interesting story. The writing is very detailed and carefully crafted. Balancing the action with the love story, I admire how brilliantly the author had written it.

The plot is very good. It unfolds a leaf into Joshua’s love story. The problem they are facing in getting Serena united with Joshua. The search rescue resulted in four dead bodies. What could possibly lie beneath? Ahh, it is getting really thrilling.

Mr. Sampson is truly a very intriguing man. As I keep reading, I could not possibly think what is going through his mind. He is always three steps ahead of everybody. Arley is just a very stunning woman, who can stop a man’s heart when he caught sight of her, yet only cares what John thinks of her. She is a good and loving mistress to John. Their intimacy is very sensual but in conventional way. It was the passionate night moments that I enjoyed most, aside from the riveting trip they had traveling from Colorado to Charleston. I had a glimpse of what it feels like to travel, communicate and live after the Civil War.

The story is thrilling and original. It has me hooked till the end without getting off my seat. It still kept me wondering what could possibly happen next to their month-long adventure to Charleston. What happened to Serena? What awaits Joshua? It is for every reader to find out. I will definitely read the last drop of this series.

5 Star by Vincent Crummles on Amazon

5 Star by Amanda Hughes on Goodreads

A fabulous look at the post Civil War West and South with two unforgettable characters. The descriptions were so rich and meticulously researched I felt like I was there. This the second book in a series about Arley and John Sampson, their steamy love affair and their quest to unravel a mystery that will have you turning the pages. From the ranch in Colorado, to the Planter’s Hotel in St. Louis to the journey on the elegant riverboat, this book will propel you back to another time, thick with romance and intrigue. Don’t miss it!

5 Star by Melanie Adkins on Goodreads

It was amazing!

John Sampson finally found a bit of happiness. He knew he was blessed to have found Arley and the people he now called friends. In his happiness, John wanted to help his friend Joshua find the woman he loved. This would mean a trip back home, he was ready though.

I would love to see this and the other two books in the series as movies. Rough and tumble, yet soft and loving, this book has it all. There is even a good dose of humor throughout. The best part is you can read each book alone and you still get a captivating read. Incredibly well plotted and such wonderful characters. Put it on your TBR pile. Near the top.

The only issue is again the “end of chapter” statement.

I have this one 5 cheers out of 5 because it swept me away. copy of book provided by author and I voluntarily reviewed it

5 Star by Vincent Crummles on Amazon

5 Star by Laura Steward on Amazon

5 Star by Kent Matlack on Amazon

5 Star by Amelia Ostrosky on Amazon

5 Star by Kissablysweet1 on Amazon

5 Star by Richard Parnes on Amazon

Escape Back to Charleston is the 2nd in the author’s trilogy. Have just completed and was quite impressed. Not sure how many really know the difficulties it was back the in mid to late 1800’s after the Civil War when traveling by Stagecoach then Riverboat. Donald Montano has done an excellent job of his descriptions while showing the reader how his trio of heroes continues to fight for the ultimate good. Traveling from Colorado to Charleston was an incredibly long trip that included endurance and ingenuity while fighting Indians and Rustlers. A great appreciation is felt for all who completed this. But back to our heroes. John Sampson, Arley Ruttlinger and Joshua have become the Mod Squad of their time. Their thoughts for others over themselves brings the reader to shout out for their successes while continuing to move towards their ultimate goal. And that is why I am continuing non-stop to read book 3. I want, no need, to know if they reach their goal. The author should be extremely proud of his own achievement.