Review – Catching Captain Nash by Anna Campbell

Home is the sailor, home from the sea… 

Five years after he’s lost off the coast of South America, presumed dead, Captain Robert Nash escapes cruel captivity, and returns to London and the bride he loves, but barely knows. When he stumbles back into the family home, he’s appalled to find himself gate-crashing the party celebrating his wife’s engagement to another man.

No red-blooded naval officer takes a challenge like this lying down; but five years is a long time, and beautiful, passionate Morwenna has clearly found a life without him. Can he win back the wife who gave him a reason to survive his ordeal? Or will the woman who haunts his every thought remain eternally out of reach?

Love lost and found? Or love lost forever? 

Since hearing of her beloved husband’s death, Morwenna Nash has been mired in grief. After five grim years without him, she must summon every ounce of courage and determination to become a Dashing Widow and rejoin the social whirl. But she owes it to her young daughter to break free of old sorrow and find a new purpose in life, even if that means accepting a loveless marriage.

It’s like a miracle when Robert returns from the grave, and despite the awkward circumstances of his arrival, she’s overjoyed that her husband has come back to her at last. But after years of suffering, he’s not the handsome, laughing charmer she remembers. Instead he’s a grim shadow of his former dashing self. He can’t hide how much he still wants her—but does passion equal love?

Can Morwenna and Robert bridge the chasm of absence, suffering and mistrust, and find the way back to each other? 

Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:
Catching Captain Nash (The Dashing Widows Book 6)

My Review:

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

As I followed along with Anna Campbell’s Dashing Widows series, Morwenna Nash became a favorite character of mine.  The grieving widow who lost her sailor husband after being married such a short time touched my heart.  Unlike many of the other widows, Morwenna’s marriage was happy, and she and Robert were wildly in love.  Morwenna had no desire to stop mourning Robert and certainly had no intention of finding a new husband.

Morwenna’s friends finally convince her to enter society again.  Robert has now been gone five years, and Morwenna has decided that she’ll accept the marriage proposal of Hugh Rutherford, a baron.  She has made it clear to Hugh that she still loves her husband, which he accepts.  Hugh will be a good father figure for her young daughter.  On the very night of their engagement ball, as the announcement is being made, a ragged figure interrupts.  It’s none other than Robert, who, by some miracle, has survived and has finally made his way home.

Initially, Morwenna’s shock immobilizes her, and she fails to throw herself into Robert’s arms, as I would have loved to see.  The baron, now the former fiancé, and ever the gentleman, removes her hand from his arm, and bows out gracefully.  The ballroom is cleared out, leaving just Morwenna, Robert, and the immediate family, who all converge on Robert, making him very uncomfortable with their embraces and questions.  Robert has obviously been ill, and is dead on his feet, so everyone leaves him alone with Morwenna.

As the two are alone in their room, Morwenna finally begins to emerge from her stupor, and they begin to talk.  While the conversation is somewhat stilted, and Robert is obviously not yet telling all that he’s had to endure, the strong passionate connection that they’ve always shared is still there and they come together as husband and wife once again.

I love the direction that author Anna Campbell chose to take this story.  Rather than having Robert and Morwenna be estranged, she chose to let them reconnect with one another, and let Morwenna be Robert’s anchor as he struggles to adjust.  Both Morwenna and Robert are strong and sympathetic characters, and I adore them both.  As they tell each other what has happened in the last five years, they trust that they’re hearing the truth.  Robert has endured captivity, prison, and torture – he’s physically and emotionally scarred, and will need time to recover.  I found CATCHING CAPTAIN NASH to be the very best of the Dashing Widows series.  There is plenty of heart, warmth, and emotion, along with an epilogue that gives a glimpse of a very happy future.  I shed a few tears while enjoying this most satisfying read, which I can highly recommend.

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