Whispers in the Canyon is a fictional romance set in 1800s Arizona. It’s a story about hardship, love, and the importance of family and neighbors. Most importantly, it’s a story about true love and the difficulties couples can face.
The novel follows the Donovan family, a large, prosperous Irish immigrant family. They are a clan that understands the importance of “being neighborly.” Unfortunately, the Donovans, in particular the oldest son Adam, feel that they had neglected their neighborly duties when it comes to Jesse Travers and her family.
MacShane has woven a complex and sometimes unsettling romantic story. The novel not only follows the story of Adam Donovan and Jesse Travers but also their family and neighbors. Whispers in the Canyon is a novel about how everyone that lives in the small Arizona community is intertwined with each other.
“You can live without your own, but not without your neighbor” … and sometimes his father said… “A man without family has no one, but a man who is a bad neighbor is no one.”
Since the novel is about an Irish-American family and their neighbors, it’s only fitting that there are references to Irish heritage and even Gaelic phrases. It lends authenticity to the story that helps to make it easier for readers to identify with the various characters. There are a lot of characters that go beyond the Donovan clan. This abundance of characters also helps to show how everyone’s life affects the others.
MacShane’s novel is not the traditional “happy” love story. The characters experience many of the emotions that happen in real life. There is the loss of a child, sickness, and even death. What sets this story apart is how the author has each of the characters deal with their loss.
The book is a true love story. There is a “happily ever after” ending but it takes time and work for all of the characters to get there. This is what sets this story apart from other romance novels.
Readers will be shocked at the life Jesse Travers has gone through. They’ll also admire her heart and courage. The author has tackled such sensitive issues as physical abuse in a touching manner. The story also shows how Jesse’s abuse by her brother wasn’t stopped. No one that knew wanted to get involved. This is still true today. Gifford MacShane has found a way to address a topic that most people don’t want to notice today.
Readers that are looking for the stereotypical cowboy romance will be surprised by the depth of emotion that comes through in the book. It goes beyond the female protagonist’s point of view to include the man’s. For some readers, this can be eye-opening.
If you love cowboys with heart and romance, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by Gifford MacShane’s Whispers in the Canyon.