Tucker's Claim by Sarah McCarty
Tucker's Claim by Sarah McCarty (2009) is actually the third installment in the Hell's Eight series. Eight men, the only survivors of the raid on their town while still just boys, stand together through whatever life throws in their path in the rough-and-tumble Old West.
Texas Ranger Tucker McCade, half-white and half-Native American, has an interest in widow Sallie Mae Reynolds that he doesn't ever expect to lead anywhere. While being mixed race leaves him feeling unable to court her [note that he could be killed for even expressing an interest in a white woman], all that matters to her is the difference in their outlook on life. As a Quaker, plus serving as her town's physician since the death of her husband, she is all about peace and non-violence. And Tucker goes out of his way to find violence.
Can the differences between the two be resolved?
Although part of a series, you can read this book as a stand-alone without feeling lost or confused. If you've already read the earlier books, you can revisit those characters here, as well.
I'm already anxious to read the next book, Tracker's Sin, because I found the glimpses of Tracker in Tucker's Claim very interesting. And Tracker also has a twin named Shadow. Yes, there's still a lot more to come with this series.
Warning--McCarty provides explicit sex scenes.
My overall personal rating of Tucker's Claim is a B+.