Imagine for a moment being gifted old journals written by your foremothers. Four generations of wild triumphs and soul crushing losses. What lessons did the women keep inside? What lessons could they teach you now? What conquests to strive for and what mistakes to avoid?

Marina Townsend is given such a gift after the death of her mother, with a stipulation attached. Before she can inherit the land, she must put the old diaries into books to be passed down to future generations—The Legacy of the Silver Cross Ranch.

The Legacy of Rose Bodeen—Marina’s first challenge is Great-Great Grandma Rose Bodeen, born in 1877. A hard-living kind of girl, Rose can out-ride and out-cuss any hand on the Silver Cross. After being jilted, she finds adventure waiting beyond the boundaries of the ranch: Buffalo Bill and his Wild West, and love with all its joys and heartaches. But just as her wise Mama said, the land draws her back like the sun draws flowers from the ground in spring.

The Legacy of Birdie Bassett—In 1918, Birdie Steele lies about her age and joins the Army Nursing Corp. Assigned to Hospital 16 in France, she finds that growing up on the Silver Cross Ranch was a good background to her new occupation of being an Army nurse—long nights, cold, disease, life and death. Never wanting to be a rancher, its challenges makes Birdie realize she’s more like her mother Rose than she cares to admit. Through high times in the 1920’s, the struggles of the Great Depression, and two World Wars, Birdie brings beauty and grace to the land and continues to build the ranch in her own, unique style.

The Legacy of Mavis McCall—In Mavis’s lifetime the world shifts on its very foundation, as does she. The Great Depression rocks her family, followed by World War II. Mavis enlists in the Women’s Army Corp, determined not to let evil win. As secretary to a general, she finds herself in the middle of the atrocities wrought by war. Though the Allies win, Mavis comes home tired, defeated and carrying heavy secrets. Only after returning to her beloved land does she finally, truly heal. With hard work and keen foresight, she moves the ranch, and herself, into a bold new era.

The Legacy of Claire Delany—Marina’s final and biggest challenge is transcribing her mother Claire Delany’s journal, written during the last year of the woman’s life as she battles a second round of cancer. Claire’s words are brutally honest, some touching and some leaving Marina wondering if she ever really knew the woman who raised her. Claire grows up a child of the 60’s and wants no part of the ranch. She wants freedom, but soon learns freedom comes with a high price. As the land did with her foremothers, it draws Claire back with a strong pull she cannot fight. The final words of Claire’s journal speak not of an ending, but a new beginning, and are as ageless and enduring as the mountains that surround the Silver Cross like a strong fortress. Claire’s deep secrets, along with hard-won kernels of wisdom, lead Marina to make tough choices about the ranch, her marriage and the way she’s leading her life. 

A lady rancher is a rare breed of woman with a spirit of survival branded into her soul—an enduring legacy passed from one generation to the next.