TRUE LOVE COWBOY by Jennifer Ryan

September 14, 2021

A McGrath Novel , Book 3

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Ryan is known for her cowboy heroes, strong-willed heroines, and powerful love stories. Always page-turning, her western set romances are perfect for fans of Diana Palmer, BJ Daniels, and Linda Lael Miller.

Cowboys live by their word, their wits, and their loyalty.

Jon Crawford has returned to Montana, determined to take over his father’s ranch and raise his daughter in Big Sky Country, leaving the big-city life behind once and for all. He doesn’t have time to fall in love, but he doesn’t count on stubborn but beautiful Trinity McGrath, who arouses his protective instincts even as she tries to push him away.

Life hasn’t always been easy for Trinity, but now she has everything she needs—her family, friends, and a safe and secure life. With a business to build, Trinity doesn’t have time for romance…until Jon comes barging into her life and all her intentions are turned upside down! 

Still, an attraction like theirs is too powerful to deny, and sometimes true love comes along when you least expect it. But when someone from Jon’s past comes back with a vengeance, Trinity and Jon will have to do everything they can to save themselves and their new love…

Trinity has a successful small business and is trying to grow it. She had a terrible experience (in the previous book) and has PTSD which flares up from time to time. She meets Jon when he moves back to this small town. He is moving to his family ranch because he wants his daughter to grow up there. He had a very successful business in L.A., but realizes he needs to spend time with her. She’s only 4 and is the cutest part of the book for sure. Her mother, on the other hand, is a nightmare. Luckily, they are not (and have never been) married, but she is hopeful they will get back together. He is adamant that it will never happen.

The mom is an awful, selfish woman who does not take very good care of their daughter. Jon finds it frustrating, and is trying to make things work. They have shared custody, which helps, but he knows there are some serious issues going on and isn’t sure how to handle it all.

Trinity is making a delivery to Jon’s dad and that’s how they meet. When she doesn’t get a response to her knock, she goes in and finds him barely breathing on the floor. She struggles to get him out of the house and into her car, thinking it will be much faster for her to take him to the hospital than to wait for an ambulance that has to come from another town. When she finally gets him outside, Jon is there to help. He makes her a bit nervous, but eventually she figures out he is truly the son and a nice guy. In fact, he’s a very nice guy and he is immediately drawn to Trinity. She’s not so sure.

The more they see each other, the more they both realize they have something special. But dealing with the mom is very difficult, and things progressively get worse with her. Eventually, Jon and Trinity find their happily ever after with his daughter, and a happy ending is reached. But there is a lot of drama before they get there, and just a little bit of sex. I really loved these characters and realize I need to go back and read the last book. I did review Waiting on a Cowboy, the first book. Another excellent read from Jennifer Ryan!

9/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

TRUE LOVE COWBOY by Jennifer Ryan. Avon (August 24, 2021). ISBN:‎ 978-0063020801. 384 pages.







NO IMPACT MAN by Colin Beavan

September 12, 2021

The Adventures of a Guilty Liberal Who Attempts to Save the Planet, and the Discoveries He Makes About Himself and Our Way of Life in the Process

What does it really take to live eco-effectively?

For one year, Colin Beavan swore off plastic and toxins, turned off his electricity, went organic, became a bicycle nut, and tried to save the planet from environmental catastrophe while dragging his young daughter and his Prada-wearing wife along for the ride. Together they attempted to make zero impact on the environment while living right in the heart of Manhattan, and this is the sensational, funny, and consciousness-raising story of how they did it.

With No Impact Man, Beavan found that no-impact living is worthwhile–and richer, fuller, and more satisfying in the bargain.

I read this book many years ago when it first came out, around 2009. I showed the documentary at the public library a few years ago when I worked there. I just re-read the book for a book discussion as part of the Social Impact series at Lynn University, and it struck me that it is as relevant today as it was more than a decade ago – maybe more so. It’s also more depressing to realize that nothing much has changed in all that time.

Colin Beavan described himself as “a liberal schlub who got tired of listening to himself complain about the world without ever actually doing anything about it.”  He decided to try a social experiment to try and make zero impact on the environment. It was not easy, to say the least. He dragged his “espresso-guzzling, retail-worshipping wife, Michelle, and their two year-old daughter…into the fray.”

Colin was very lucky. Michelle agreed to go along with it, and honestly, I think she changed more than anyone from this year. Their daughter was a lot like her mother; willing to go along, easily entertained, and remarkable agreeable for a toddler.

The plan was divided into six parts, and each part was gradually introduced and adopted.

1. Transport: Travel without creating any carbon emissions. Walk, ride a bike, take public transport, car-pool.  

2. Food: Buy organic, local, seasonal produce (with minimal packaging). Go vegetarian.

3. Energy: Reduce household energy use. Seven months in, they stopped using electricity at all.

4. Waste: Reduce waste by buying products with no, minimal or recyclable packaging. Food scraps go to the compost bin and the worm farm. No bottled water. No disposable diapers. No toilet paper.

5. Consumption: Buy nothing new. Shop at thrift stores or consignment shops or online like Freecycle (a Yahoo group where people advertised stuff they didn’t want anymore and gave it away.)

6. Positive impact: Get involved in and support projects that are making a positive impact. 

Oh, did I mention they lived in New York City? When he first started talking about this project, people generally responded by saying, “you need to move to the country.” Like living in a rural community makes a difference. By the end of this book, I was pretty convinced it couldn’t have worked anywhere but NYC.

They started with transport, which meant no cars, trains, planes, subways, buses, escalators and elevators. They lived on the 9th floor and used the stairs. Beavan’s office was on the 12th floor and he took the stairs. Michelle’s office was on the 34th floor. She took the elevator.

Michelle worked full time through this ordeal as a writer for Business Week. She enjoyed her air conditioned office and the elevator ride to get there. She was also a serious caffeine addict and by rights, should have given it up. To stick with the local only diet, that meant no coffee as it isn’t grown anywhere in NY. But eventually they caved on the coffee.

They switched to cloth diapers. They shopped for food at the farmer’s market and brought their own bags and muslin fabric to wrap food like cheese in, so no plastic wrap or anything that was prepackaged. Their entertainment was having friends over and playing charades. Oh, early on Michelle decided she was addicted to reality TV and insisted they get rid of the television.

Beavan’s writing style is humorous and fast paced. This may have been the longest year in his life, but it is a quick read. I found it very inspirational, albeit sad that global warming really hasn’t been addressed in a significant way, especially due to the last president and his administration. Biden is desperately trying to play catch up but it is not easy.

The documentary is available on various streaming services. I highly recommend either reading this book or watching the documentary. Both are worth your time.

9/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

NO IMPACT MAN by Colin Beavan. Picador; First edition (May 25, 2010). ISBN:‎ 978-0312429836. 288 pages.







September 11, 2021

Wranglers of Wyoming, Book 3

A woman on the run must trust her family’s sworn enemy in this thrilling tale by one of the best in cowboy romance.

The cowboy she can’t have . . . is the one she can’t resist.

Annie Dempsey has two rules for her new life in Devil’s Door, Wyoming: no romance and no drama. Fresh off a bad breakup, she’s already avoiding love. And as long as she steers clear of the Merrick clan—her family’s sworn enemies—avoiding drama won’t be a problem. But when a charming stranger steps in to protect Annie from a sudden threat, both her rules fly out the door. Because Annie’s mystery hero . . . is a Merrick.

Jonah Merrick won’t allow anyone—even a Dempsey—to be harmed on his watch. It doesn’t hurt that sweet, gorgeous Annie makes his heart beat like never before. Against his family’s objections, Jonah insists Annie hide out with him at his ranch while they try to outwit a dangerous pursuer. But as the days turn into weeks, Jonah realizes he’ll stop anyone who tries to harm Annie . . . or the loving future they’re building together.

This is the third book of the series, and I’m afraid this is the end. Jonah is the last Merrick brother still single. He loves living on the ranch with his family, but he also has his own space, a cabin where he writes his bestselling novels. He is surprised to see a woman hiking by his cabin, and informs her she is on private land. They get to talking and he is not surprised by his attraction to Annie – this is the woman who piqued his interest in the local bar but disappeared into the night. Now that she’s here, Jonah wants to get to know her.

Annie is actually running from a bad relationship and has no interest in starting another. Until she meets Jonah. She really likes him but when they find out each other’s last names, things take a sudden turn. Annie is a Dempsey, sworn enemies of the Merrick family. But Annie is in big trouble, and Jonah realizes he wants to help. She ends up moving in with the family and eventually, she wins them all over. But trouble keeps finding her.

This cowboy romance has enough suspense to keep the pages turning – I couldn’t put it down. Lots of family drama and a bit of steamy romance all combine to make this book a winner! Can’t wait to see what Ryan does next.

9/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

MEANT TO BE MY COWBOY by R. C. Ryan. Forever (August 24, 2021). ISBN:‎ 978-1538716908. 352 pages.







September 8, 2021

Wranglers of Wyoming, Book 2

New York Times bestselling author R.C. Ryan takes readers on a wild ride with a strong heroine who must trust the cowboy trying to save her life.

A cowboy with a wild side

Kirby Regan isn’t opposed living on the edge. After all, she just quit her career in Washington, D.C., so she could move back to Wyoming and buy her family’s ranch. But hiking the Tetons after dark during a snowstorm goes beyond being adventurous, especially when Kirby’s boss warns her that an escaped convict is at large. Sheltering in a cave seems the safest option to ride out the blizzard-until Kirby realizes it’s already occupied . . . by a ruggedly handsome cowboy.

Like the mustangs he treats, veterinarian and rancher Casey Merrick prefers to live wild and free, which is why a relationship is not in the cards for him. He doesn’t mind sharing his space with a gorgeous stranger, as long as they can both keep their distance-a task that begins to seem impossible as the attraction between them heats up. But before they can worry about the spark smoldering between them, Casey must find a way to protect Kirby from nature’s most ruthless conditions . . . and a convicted killer on the loose.

I love cowboy romances, and Ryan is one of my favorite authors. Yet somehow I missed this book last year and didn’t realize it until the third book came out (review to follow!)

Kirby Regan grew up on her uncle’s ranch in Wyoming, and eventually got a job with the Association of Land Management in Washington D.C. But her uncle has died, and her cousin wants to sell the ranch. Kirby manages to get a transfer to Wyoming with hopes of buying it from her cousin. Meanwhile, her first assignment is to go out into the Teton mountains and count the wild herd of horses.

Kirby realizes she’s in trouble when it starts snowing, and then finds out there is a manhunt going on for an escaped prisoner. She finds a cave to ride out the storm in, but is shocked to find it already occupied. Luckily, it wasn’t the prisoner hiding out but a local veterinarian and rancher, Casey Merrick. Once that is established, they decide to share the cave until the snowstorm blows over.

Casey loves being out in the wild but he likes it best by himself. But sharing it with the beautiful Kirby doesn’t feel like too much of a hardship. Eventually the snow stops and they dig out, but they still have to worry about a killer wandering these mountains.

Casey and Regan realize how much they enjoy spending time together and fall in love, but there is a lot of drama before they reach their happy ending. Ryan writes a really good romance with strong characters and a beautiful setting. If you haven’t seen Enchanted by the Mountains’ Ever-Changing Beauty: 45 Miles on the Teton Crest Trail in the NY Times, enjoy!

8/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

THIS COWBOY OF MINE by R. C. Ryan. Forever (December 15, 2020). ISBN:‎ 978-1538716885. 432 pages.







August 24, 2021

Gunslinger, Book 1

Gray “Quick Shot” Woodson is the fastest gun west of the Mississippi. Unfortunately, he’s ready to hang up his hat. Sure, being notorious has its perks. But the nomadic lifestyle―and people always tryin’ to kill you―gets old real fast.

Now he just wants to find a place to retire so he can spend his days the way the good Lord intended. Staring at the sunset. And napping.

When his stubborn horse drags him into a hole-in-the-wall town called Desolation, something about the place calls to Gray, and he figures he might actually have a shot at a sleepy retirement.

His optimism lasts about a minute and a half.

Soon he finds himself embroiled in a town vendetta and married to a woman named Mercy. Who, judging by her aggravating personality, doesn’t know the meaning of her own name. In fact, she’s downright impossible.

But dang it if his wife isn’t irresistible. If only she’d stop trying to steal his guns to go after the bad guys herself.

There goes his peace and quiet…

This was a very different read for me. It’s an historical cowboy romance, and I really loved it!

Gray is a gunslinger who has the reputation of being unstoppable, with a trail of dead bodies behind him to prove it. Turns out he “accidentally” got into it when he was defending himself. He learned to shoot as a child, and is quite skilled, but he is really tired of people trying to kill him just for the prestige of it.

Gray ends up in the little town of Desolation, where he meets Mercy. She offers him a place to sleep and meals if he will help her with one of her neighbors. It seems the man is trying every which way to get his hands on the property she just inherited when her father passed away. He tries proposing, threatening, offering money, but she doesn’t want to sell. Gray agrees to basically be her bodyguard, but when push comes to shove, Mercy blurts out that he is her fiancé, and the fake romance takes off.

Gray is a bit of a curmudgeon, and all he is really interested in is food and napping, but Mercy is a terrible cook and his naps keep getting interrupted. When he ends up shooting the gun out Mercy’s nemesis’s hand, the whole town is intrigued. But the sheriff is scared and takes off in the middle of the night. Gray is offered the position, which he finds hilarious as he’s always been on the wrong side of the law but eventually he takes it. And he soon learns what it means to be accepted, by a woman and a town.

Mercy and Gray marry, and he soon learns that caring about people may be dangerous to his health. Things come to a head with a shootout in the streets and of course, the happy ending. This was a really fun read, a hot romance, and I couldn’t put it down. Really looking forward to the next book in this series!

8/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

HITCHED TO THE GUNSLINGER by Michelle McLean. Entangled: Amara (August 24, 2021). ISBN: 978-1649370228. 1330 pages.







July 27, 2021

The Ryan Family, Book 1

From the publisher:

From the bestselling author of Queen of Cowboy: regrets and old heartbreaks are unearthed in this sweeping love story as hometown sweethearts get a second chance at love—and being a family.

Retired combat medic Jesse Ryan hasn’t been home much since he enlisted twenty years ago. Now he’s headed back to Texas to help take care of his aging foster parents and run Sunflower ranch. But when he gets there, he finds his parents’ live-in nurse is Addison Hall, his high school best friend and the woman he always regretted leaving behind after their one steamy night together before he shipped out. He’s not at all surprised that their chemistry is still sparking, but Jesse is shocked to learn Addy gave birth to a little girl about nine months after he left—his little girl.

​Addy has her hands full as a single mom of a nineteen-year-old daughter who suddenly wants to rebel at everything. The last thing she needs is Jesse Ryan complicating her life even further, especially since she’s always had a crush on the handsome cowboy. But the more time she spends with Jesse, the more she wonders what might happen if they finally let their friendship blossom into something more and became the family she’d always hoped for. 

Includes the bonus novella Small Town Charm for the first time in print!

Brown writes several different series, but I especially enjoy her cowboy romances. In this story, the romance is centered around Jesse, a cowboy that enlisted and served in the Air Force. Twenty years in and he’s retiring, just in time to come home and help his aging parents with the family ranch. Addy was his best friend growing up, and they finally spent the night together his last night at home before leaving for the service. Addy never told him that she got pregnant that night.

When he returns home it’s to find Addy and her 19 year old daughter living on the ranch. Addy is a nurse, and after Jesse’s dad had a couple of strokes, they asked her to stay on so he would have a nurse nearby. She also helps out on the ranch along with her daughter, who also works there.

It doesn’t take Jesse long to do the math and figure out who the baby daddy is. But it takes a lot longer to rekindle the romance with Addy. There is a lot of family drama before Jesse and Addy get their happy ending. But the journey to get there is fun, and at times, emotional. I really enjoyed this story and look forward to the next Ryan Family book.

7/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

SECOND CHANCE AT SUNFLOWER RANCH by Carolyn Brown. Forever (July 27, 2021). ISBN: 978-1538735619. 400 pages.







June 27, 2021

A Single Dad, a Woman Grieving, and a Beautiful Contemporary Western Romance

Creedence Horse Rescue, Book 1

From the publisher:

A brand-new series of sweet, small town cowboy romance from USA Today bestselling author Jennie Marts. The Horse Whisperer meets Hope Floats when bubbly Bryn Callahan and brooding Zane Taylor protect an unwanted horse and end up with an animal rescue operation that they can only handle when they rely on each other.

Scarred and battered loner Zane Taylor has a gift with animals, particularly horses, but he’s at a total loss when it comes to knowing how to handle women. Even though he’s sworn off love, he can’t seem to stay away from Bryn Callahan. He’s known for being a horse whisperer, but can’t seem to find his voice at all where Bryn is concerned.

Bryn Callahan has a heart for strays, but she is through trying to save damaged men. She vows to only date nice guys, which is a category that does not include Zane Taylor. Too bad he’s the only one who sets her pulse racing every time she’s around him.

Starting a horse rescue ranch wasn’t in Bryn’s plan, but try telling that to the assembly of abandoned animals that have found their way to her doorstep. And when a chance encounter with a horse headed for slaughter brings Zane and Bryn together, they find themselves given a chance to save not just the horse, but maybe each other…

I recently read the second book in this series, (When A Cowboy Loves a Woman) and I liked it so much that I sought out this one, the first. And I think this was even better!

Zane is so damaged that Bryn is warned off him repeatedly, but she is a compassionate woman, and she sees the good in him, plus they have chemistry that burns. The heart wants what the heart wants, and even though on paper the local vet is a better choice for her, they have no spark at all.

Bryn is a waitress in this small town, but she lives on the ranch she inherited from her grandpa. So when she sees an obviously abused horse in a trailer outside the diner, she wants to rescue it from the cowboys who tell her the horse is headed for the glue factory (if there was such a place.) Zane comes to the rescue by leaving her a $100 tip so she can buy the animal, then he helps her get it home and take care of it. As soon as word gets out about the rescue, they are sent on a hunt for another abused, abandoned horse which they also bring back to the ranch. Pretty soon the menagerie includes a hog that was a household pet as it was sold to them as a potbellied pig. Then a pair of lovebirds make their way into the house, and an abandoned pregnant dog who soon gives birth to a bunch of puppies. Bryn can’t really afford to feed and care for all these animals, but she has friends in this small town. Soon there are collection jars all over town and a webpage with crowdsourcing funding and the money is pouring in.

Meanwhile Zane is pushing her away as she burrows under his skin. He knows he is wrong for her despite his heart telling him otherwise. He has been abused all his life by his father after being told he killed his mother during childbirth. The man has issues, not to mention some nasty scarring from the abuse he suffered. But Bryn is determined to get her man, despite all the roadblocks he is constantly putting up.

I really loved that this cowboy was a sort of “horse whisperer;” it seems like so many cowboy romances gloss over what cowboys do and I liked that there was some focus on that here. There are some really funny moments and I cried a time or two as well, so it is safe to say that this is a very emotional read, and really good romance. I can’t wait for the next book in this series, but while I’m waiting, Marts has a couple of other series I will be looking for.

6/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

A COWBOY STATE OF MIND by Jennie Marts. Sourcebooks Casablanca (June 30, 2020). ISBN: 978-1492689119. 416 pages.








June 19, 2021

A Single Dad, a Woman Grieving, and a Beautiful Contemporary Western Romance

Creedence Horse Rescue, Book 2

From the publisher:

“I don’t think I could stay away from you if I tried.”
He shook his head.
“And I have been trying. I told myself not to go to your house tonight.
I ordered my hand not to hold yours.
But apparently I can’t control myself when it comes to you, Elle Brooks.”

When a kitchen fire forces young widow Elle Brooks to move in with her friend Bryn and her motley collection of rescue animals, she doesn’t foresee ending up in the muscled arms of handsome cowboy and veterinarian Brody Tate. Spending time with the hunky cowboy and his adorable young daughter as they rehabilitate rescued horses reminds Elle of all she lost in a car crash years ago.

Brody is devoted to being a good dad for his spirited daughter. He hasn’t let romance even enter his head. But now he’s met Elle. Spending time with her is shaking up the calm he’s worked so hard to achieve, and he can’t seem to get this woman off his mind.

This author was new to me and as usual, I missed the first book in this series. But this book stood alone beautifully; I wouldn’t have known I missed anything.

Brody is a vet and a volunteer fireman, not to mention a widower for several years and the dad of a sweet young daughter. He’s visiting a friend when he spots a fire across the street. He saves Bryn from her kitchen fire, and their attraction is palpable. Bryn is a young widow, and neither of them are looking for a relationship, but the attraction is too big to deny.

In addition to being a vet, Brody also runs an animal rehab. (I think he may walk on water in his spare time.) I couldn’t help rooting for this couple to get past all their hurdles and get together. This is a sweet romance, not as sad as it may sound being they both lost their spouses. There is some humor as well. All in all, this book was a good read, good enough for me to go find the first book in the series, A Cowboy State of Mind. I found the ebook on Hoopla, courtesy of my library.

If you like cowboys and animals as much as I do, you will enjoy this romance!

6/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

WHEN A COWBOY LOVES A WOMAN by Jennie Marts. Sourcebooks Casablanca (March 30, 2021) Amara (March 9, 2021). ISBN: 978-1492689140. 336 pages.







WISHING FOR A COWBOY by Victoria James

June 7, 2021

Wishing River, Book 3

From the publisher:

From New York Times bestselling author Victoria James comes a heartwarming love story about family, forgiveness, and the true meaning of “home.”

Janie Adams has been a single parent to her nephew since he was a baby. Fifteen years later, she’s finally found out who his father might be, so the two of them travel across the country to find him. She’d do anything for this kid. But when they arrive in the small town of Wishing River, Montana, and Janie finally meets the ruggedly handsome cowboy she’d been told had abandoned his son, his shocked response changes everything.

Aiden Rivers can’t dispute this is his kid when he sees his own features staring back at him, but he had no idea Janie’s sister was pregnant when she left him. He didn’t even know she had a sister―clearly they’d all been lied to. Now he has fifteen years of fatherhood to make up for and no idea how to be a dad. This was never in his plans.

Janie sticks around to help him ease into parenting, everything from showing him how to lure a sulky kid out of his bedroom to keeping up with the latest teen-speak. Together, they surprisingly make a good team, this city girl and country boy. But when the past catches up with them, Aiden and Janie must decide what’s best for the boy who’s connecting them, not only for each other…which could mean splitting them apart.

Each book in the Wishing River series is STANDALONE:
* The Trouble with Cowboys
* Cowboy for Hire
* Wishing For A Cowboy

I love a good cowboy romance, and James’s latest entry into her series is a really good one. Janie has raised her sister’s son as if he was her own. Her sister is bad news, and has only appeared sporadically since his birth. But Janie gives up everything to take care of him, so when she runs out of money, she knows she has to do something. She tracks down the father and shows up on his ranch.

Aiden remembers Janie’s sister, and also remembers what a flake she was. But he is still shocked to find out he has a teenage son. Determined to do right by him, and his guardian, Aiden takes them in and starts getting to know them both. Janie is beyond happy that he is willing to acknowledge his son.

While they get to know one another, Janie and Aiden fall in love. There are a bunch of obstacles to get around, including her sister showing up and deciding to “take back” her ex. It’s a mess but everyone gets what they deserve in the end. Another excellent addition to the series.

6/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

WISHING FOR A COWBOY by Victoria James. Entangled: Amara (March 9, 2021). ISBN: 978-1682815670. 364 pages.








December 7, 2020

The Best Cowboy Christmas Ever, Book 1

From the publisher:

Enjoy a down-home Texas cowboy Christmas!

When handsome town sheriff Derrick Shelton meets Angelique Guillory and her young daughter at the Garrett ranch, he is immediately drawn to the woman who seems to desperately need a true family Christmas. Determined to erase the shadows from her eyes, he decides to give her the best holiday she’s ever had.

Angelique Guillory is a woman with a past, haunted by violence and searching for the family she never knew. When she and her little daughter find their way to the Garrett family and meet Derrick, she hopes to have finally found a safe haven.

But Angelique is still looking over her shoulder. Despite her doubts, with a little Christmas magic and the warmth of the Garretts, Angelique may find more love and acceptance than she ever thought possible.

Also by June Faver, the Dark Horse Cowboys series:
Do or Die Cowboy (Book 1)
Hot Target Cowboy (Book 2)
When to Call a Cowboy (Book 3)
Cowboy Christmas Gold (Book 4)

This is only my second read by this author and I’m not sure why. I really liked the first book I read back in 2018. At least this is the first book of a new series so I can feel good about that. Cowboys and Christmas in one book put this on my must-read list. This was a good story, but it definitely had some issues. To be honest, there are enough holes in this story to drive a truck through. That said, the characters were well developed and I liked most of them. 

Angelique only learns who her father is as her mother is dying. She also lost her husband, whose father is some sort of New Orleans Mafia chief who decides he is going to raise his grandchild himself. She takes off with the kid and escapes to this small town to meet her long lost father. Here come the holes…

She meets the sheriff on her way into town and apparently, it is love at first sight. She shows up at the Garrett ranch, a very rich homestead, and her father just accepts her word that she is the daughter he never knew about. No DNA test required. Her new half-siblings aren’t as gullible and tend to make her life miserable until they figure out all she really wants from them is family. And a place to live. And a job. And babysitting. And you get the idea.

I liked this book well enough to read the next one in the series. I understand it is sometimes difficult to introduce a bunch of new characters and situations but there is a better way than this.

12/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE BEST COWBOY CHRISTMAS EVER by June Faver. Sourcebooks Casablanca (September 29, 2020). ISBN 978-1728214511. 352p.