Sanders's latest Texas novel (Texas Noon, Fort Worth, etc.) is, for want of anything more fitting, a good old-fashioned read. The heroes may be a bit too sturdy and the damsels plucky in the extreme, but this tale of the early days of the Texas Republic and the Logan family's dreams and ambitions is perfect for whiling away an evening or two. Tad Logan, a hero of the Texas Revolution, comes to Charleston, South Carolina, in 1839 in order to demand his inheritance from his father. He finds more than he sought, however, eventually returning to Texas with a new bride, Corrie McNair (whom he worn away from her fiancÃ‰), his younger brother, and her younger sister. Against all advice, the four settle in San Antonio, a beautiful site threatened by both Mexicans and Indians. As Tad becomes deeply involved in politics as part of his effort to create the independent nation of his dreams and to deal with the increasingly thorny debate over whether the Republic should willingly annex itself to the US, he begins to pay less and less attention to his family. Corrie's jilted suitor, Ramsey Cothburn, comes to Texas himself, creating several emotional crises over the years. Younger brother Whit eventually chooses a career with the Texas Rangers, fighting on the Mexican border (both brothers will spend time in Mexican prisons). Younger sister Prue grows into a beautiful woman with conflicting romantic desires, resulting in some rather melodramatic goings-on in the latter stages of the novel. The story continues through the annexation of Texas in 1845 and to the Civil War, in which Whit's and Tad's sons, Jim and Albert, fight for the Confederacy. A fairy tale of the American West, but most certainly not one in which everyone lives happily ever after.