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By Any Means

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A binding contract…five determined nuns…and a runaway French beauty – riverboat gambler, Brennen Benedict has just been dealt a full house, and his queen of hearts holds all the cards. With the Mississippi River his playground, ex-Confederate Cavalry Captain now affluent gambler, BRENNEN BENEDICT lives life by his own rules – until a winning hand saddles him with the dee A binding contract…five determined nuns…and a runaway French beauty – riverboat gambler, Brennen Benedict has just been dealt a full house, and his queen of hearts holds all the cards. With the Mississippi River his playground, ex-Confederate Cavalry Captain now affluent gambler, BRENNEN BENEDICT lives life by his own rules – until a winning hand saddles him with the deed to a ramshackle Kentucky plantation. Refusing to be tied down, his quick sale is thwarted by Ursuline nuns who hold a lien on the property. To satisfy this obligation and rid himself of the burden, Brennen is forced to fulfill a contract made by the previous owner and provide the nuns with bricks for their new orphanage from a kiln on his property. Annoyed and unable to hornswoggle himself out of this mess, Brennen agrees to the sly Mother Superior’s terms, as well as allowing one of her ‘nun’s’ to oversee his brickmaking progress until the commitment is fulfilled. Charged with a murder she did not commit, French-born beauty ANNABELLE SWAN is forced to flee Philadelphia. Offered safeguard by the kind-hearted Ursulines of St. Joseph, she disguises herself in their black-and-white garb and travels with them to Kentucky. On a riverboat en route, she bumps into Brennen, a gambler as charming as he is generous. However enticed she may be, his devilish nature assures her he’s a man best kept at a distance. Once they reach their destination, Annabelle hires an attorney to prove her innocence while she assists with the nuns. Her plans to keep a low profile are shattered when the abbess assigns her to oversee the brickmaker’s progress. Frustrated by the turn of events, she struggles with her ever-growing fascination for the wicked rogue who represents everything she despises in life. From the first moment they met, Brennen is suspicious of Annabelle – for the captivating minx with soft, womanly curves and a worldly attitude is like no other nun he’s ever known. Regardless of his doubts, when her true identity is revealed, his attraction for her escalates, vexing him as much as do her dangerous secrets. He damns the draw, determined to return to the riverboat…Still, the needs both try to deny blaze ever hotter. They’re swept into a fiery passion…Until Annabelle’s greatest secret is unknowingly exposed. Can Brennen win the most-important game he’s ever played to save his little minx? Or will the gamble cost Annabelle her life?


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A binding contract…five determined nuns…and a runaway French beauty – riverboat gambler, Brennen Benedict has just been dealt a full house, and his queen of hearts holds all the cards. With the Mississippi River his playground, ex-Confederate Cavalry Captain now affluent gambler, BRENNEN BENEDICT lives life by his own rules – until a winning hand saddles him with the dee A binding contract…five determined nuns…and a runaway French beauty – riverboat gambler, Brennen Benedict has just been dealt a full house, and his queen of hearts holds all the cards. With the Mississippi River his playground, ex-Confederate Cavalry Captain now affluent gambler, BRENNEN BENEDICT lives life by his own rules – until a winning hand saddles him with the deed to a ramshackle Kentucky plantation. Refusing to be tied down, his quick sale is thwarted by Ursuline nuns who hold a lien on the property. To satisfy this obligation and rid himself of the burden, Brennen is forced to fulfill a contract made by the previous owner and provide the nuns with bricks for their new orphanage from a kiln on his property. Annoyed and unable to hornswoggle himself out of this mess, Brennen agrees to the sly Mother Superior’s terms, as well as allowing one of her ‘nun’s’ to oversee his brickmaking progress until the commitment is fulfilled. Charged with a murder she did not commit, French-born beauty ANNABELLE SWAN is forced to flee Philadelphia. Offered safeguard by the kind-hearted Ursulines of St. Joseph, she disguises herself in their black-and-white garb and travels with them to Kentucky. On a riverboat en route, she bumps into Brennen, a gambler as charming as he is generous. However enticed she may be, his devilish nature assures her he’s a man best kept at a distance. Once they reach their destination, Annabelle hires an attorney to prove her innocence while she assists with the nuns. Her plans to keep a low profile are shattered when the abbess assigns her to oversee the brickmaker’s progress. Frustrated by the turn of events, she struggles with her ever-growing fascination for the wicked rogue who represents everything she despises in life. From the first moment they met, Brennen is suspicious of Annabelle – for the captivating minx with soft, womanly curves and a worldly attitude is like no other nun he’s ever known. Regardless of his doubts, when her true identity is revealed, his attraction for her escalates, vexing him as much as do her dangerous secrets. He damns the draw, determined to return to the riverboat…Still, the needs both try to deny blaze ever hotter. They’re swept into a fiery passion…Until Annabelle’s greatest secret is unknowingly exposed. Can Brennen win the most-important game he’s ever played to save his little minx? Or will the gamble cost Annabelle her life?

30 review for By Any Means

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jacquie

    Cindy Nord brings the south to life in this enthralling tale of a dissolute gambler who comes up against a group of irascible nuns and a French beauty in danger. Brennan wins a plantation in bad repair and a debt he must repay to the nuns holding a lien on his land. The last thing he wants or needs is the distraction of Annabelle Swan-a damsel in distress. But he can’t ignore the attraction he feels and soon finds himself in the gamble of his life. I thoroughly enjoyed the escalating tension betwe Cindy Nord brings the south to life in this enthralling tale of a dissolute gambler who comes up against a group of irascible nuns and a French beauty in danger. Brennan wins a plantation in bad repair and a debt he must repay to the nuns holding a lien on his land. The last thing he wants or needs is the distraction of Annabelle Swan-a damsel in distress. But he can’t ignore the attraction he feels and soon finds himself in the gamble of his life. I thoroughly enjoyed the escalating tension between these two and the wily Mother Superior! I give By Any Means 4.5 lovely kisses!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    I was totally unaware that this last book came out and I could just slap myself. But, I made up for it today. YAY! Thoroughly enjoyed Brennan's story. Annabelle was perfect for him! I was totally unaware that this last book came out and I could just slap myself. But, I made up for it today. YAY! Thoroughly enjoyed Brennan's story. Annabelle was perfect for him!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Diane Peterson

    Oh, Ms. Cindy Nord, you sneaky girl! You have done it to me again. Here is her MO: She begins with a solid plot. She lets you get to know the hero and heroine thoroughly so you can really understand them. She adds some terrific secondary characters. She blends tons of historic detail unobtrusively into the plot. The story moves along smoothly, if somewhat slowly. Then, bam!, I'm reading my Kindle in the bathtub (I know, not a good idea, but hey, it's peaceful) and tears are rolling down my face. Oh, Ms. Cindy Nord, you sneaky girl! You have done it to me again. Here is her MO: She begins with a solid plot. She lets you get to know the hero and heroine thoroughly so you can really understand them. She adds some terrific secondary characters. She blends tons of historic detail unobtrusively into the plot. The story moves along smoothly, if somewhat slowly. Then, bam!, I'm reading my Kindle in the bathtub (I know, not a good idea, but hey, it's peaceful) and tears are rolling down my face. Good authors suck you into emotional quicksand, but I usually know I am sinking. With Cindy, I sink so gradually that I don't realize how stuck I am until she zaps me with that one scene that changes everything. Do not miss this lovely story of a damaged Civil War hero turned restless gambler and a French spinster on the run, accused of murder. We have a little bit of Lilies of the Field in this story where many characters reclaim their lives. Great storytelling.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Darlene A. Ford

    This was a wonderful love story that takes place just after the Civil War. The characters were interesting and likeable. With a little help from their friends they finally decided that they loved each other. But it seemed like forever before that love scene!!!!!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Judy Esposito

    By Any Means! Book 4 All I can say is, Love, love, love! Cindy Nord, you did it again! Awesome storyline, completely different from the previous three books in this series and they were awesome as well! Wonderfully, well thought out characters, that brought this book to life. Filled with angst and laugh out moments that kept the pages flowing. Brennen has become one of my favorite heroes, he was so much fun to read and follow as he fought what his heart was telling him. Than there's sweet Annabel By Any Means! Book 4 All I can say is, Love, love, love! Cindy Nord, you did it again! Awesome storyline, completely different from the previous three books in this series and they were awesome as well! Wonderfully, well thought out characters, that brought this book to life. Filled with angst and laugh out moments that kept the pages flowing. Brennen has become one of my favorite heroes, he was so much fun to read and follow as he fought what his heart was telling him. Than there's sweet Annabelle with the lovely green eyes and the mystery she hides in her heart. That's it, don't want to give away this beautiful story, read it yourselves and enjoy. I hope I don't have to wait too long for the next book. Wished I could give 10 stars. Recommend. JudyE

  6. 4 out of 5

    Joy Davis

    Cindy, Cindy, Cindy!! You've outdone yourself! This 4th book of the Cutteridge series shines like a beacon to those of us who've loved the three before it. That hard gambling, strikingly handsome Brennen is through with much of living and through with love. He lives for only one thing: gambling. And the lovely raven-haired Annabelle, well, that woman has some secrets that would cost her dearly to share. So, she hides behind the facade and innocence of her own beauty when she takes refuge with a Cindy, Cindy, Cindy!! You've outdone yourself! This 4th book of the Cutteridge series shines like a beacon to those of us who've loved the three before it. That hard gambling, strikingly handsome Brennen is through with much of living and through with love. He lives for only one thing: gambling. And the lovely raven-haired Annabelle, well, that woman has some secrets that would cost her dearly to share. So, she hides behind the facade and innocence of her own beauty when she takes refuge with a group of nuns. With divergent backgrounds and little in common, Brennen and Annabelle seem the most unlikely pairing as they both work to restore the once-beautiful La Belle Maison, the house that Brennen won during a game of cards. Thank goodness, Ruby and Jubal are there to help as he begins the territory's first brick-making business. Annabelle works alongside him, and during virtually every encounter, they argue. No, these two aren't suited to each other...until Annabelle lands in jail. That is when this romance takes a giant leap forward and Brennen becomes the hero he's always wanted to be. A great read!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sharyn

    Annabelle was initially a sultry French minx while she was wearing her (false) nun's habit, but as soon as she had to give up the disguise, she became meek, a little too meek for me to really connect with her. And I didn't really feel that Brennan really opened up to Annabelle, nor did he learn that money cannot solve any problem (because money always seemed to work in this book). However, the descriptions are lovely as always and you really feel like you are in Kentucky in the mid-19th century. Annabelle was initially a sultry French minx while she was wearing her (false) nun's habit, but as soon as she had to give up the disguise, she became meek, a little too meek for me to really connect with her. And I didn't really feel that Brennan really opened up to Annabelle, nor did he learn that money cannot solve any problem (because money always seemed to work in this book). However, the descriptions are lovely as always and you really feel like you are in Kentucky in the mid-19th century.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tina Conder

    Another Hit for Cindy Nord! Loved the story of Brennen and Annabelle and how they grew from dislike and animosity to admiration and love. If you've enjoyed the 3 previous books in the author's Cutteridge series, this one is a must! If you haven't read the series yet, I strongly encourage you to do so! Get all four, settle into someplace comfortable, and begin the journeys that Cindy takes us on with this wonderful series! Another Hit for Cindy Nord! Loved the story of Brennen and Annabelle and how they grew from dislike and animosity to admiration and love. If you've enjoyed the 3 previous books in the author's Cutteridge series, this one is a must! If you haven't read the series yet, I strongly encourage you to do so! Get all four, settle into someplace comfortable, and begin the journeys that Cindy takes us on with this wonderful series!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Suzy Sims

    The Gamble that won his heart Brennan Benedict wants to fulfill the inherited obligation to the Nuns and get back to his life gambling on river boats. A sassy nun, who turns out not to be a nun, will challenge his future plans. While he is gambling on a quick sale, she is gambling on a long term investment. Will the secrets that haunt her steal their happiness?

  10. 4 out of 5

    Mei

    This one was slightly better than the previous one, but still too much internal dialogues... And the resolution was to abrupt and easily solved...

  11. 5 out of 5

    Karyl

  12. 4 out of 5

    Dana

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lesia Chambliss

  14. 5 out of 5

    jim reese

  15. 4 out of 5

    Susan

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kelleen Menge

  17. 4 out of 5

    Judy battani

  18. 5 out of 5

    Regina

  19. 4 out of 5

    SHARON CORDES

  20. 5 out of 5

    Everett

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kitty Thompson

  22. 5 out of 5

    Paula

  23. 5 out of 5

    ulrika gripp

  24. 5 out of 5

    Angela

  25. 5 out of 5

    Louise Troyer

  26. 5 out of 5

    Helen J Beers

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lissyliss

  28. 5 out of 5

    The Duchess of Hollywood

  29. 4 out of 5

    Heather Tassler

  30. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn Schaller

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