Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release: April 1, 2011
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher to read and review
She thought she had it all….
A modeling contract with Wrangler got this Miss Rodeo a first class ticket out of town, but somewhere along the way Jodie Bryce lost her soul. When she gets back to her hometown, her childhood friend Teague Treadwell’s rugged cowboy charm hits her like a ton of bricks….
He believed he wasn’t good enough….
Teague is convinced Jodie’s success lifted her out of his reach. now he’s got to shed his bad boy image to be worthy of the girl next door….
But whoever heard of a beauty queen settling for a down and dirty cowboy….
Jodie Bryce is coming back to Purvis, Wyoming. The town that she left as Miss Rodeo, she’s coming back to as a riding therapist. She is hoping to use the ranch that was essentially abandoned when her dad died, to open a non-profit riding therapy program for special needs kids. She used her time away modeling for Wrangler to attend school and get ready to follow her dreams.
The thing about small towns, is that everyone knows everyone. When Jodie arrives back in town, she runs into Darla the town’s biggest gossip who declares she looks sick – maybe cancer – and her childhood friend Teague. Teague is the bad boy from the roughest family in town. His father was a wife beater and Teague got in all sorts of trouble growing up. Boy, has Teague cleaned up good!
Jodie and Teague immediately feel that attraction that existed before Jodi left. The following exerpt says it all!
“Jodie had felt something pulling her toward Teague from the moment she’d seen him at the Rexall and now that they were alone the attraction intensified to the point where she wasn’t sure she had a shred of free will left. One more second of silence, one more touch of his hand, and she’d drag him over to that bed and rip his clothes off.
The thought made her squirm inside, and something reckless swelled up in her heart. What the hell was wrong with acting on your impulses once in a while? She wasn’t an eighteen-year-old anymore. More important, she wasn’t a virgin anymore. Teague had see to that the last time they’d been together in his bedroom. She wondered if he knew he’d been her first.
But the main thing was, she was a woman now. She’d had casual relationships. She’d learned to separate sex from love and enjoy it for its own sake.
So what the hell? Why not?
She hiked up on her toes and touched her lips to his. The moment she did it, she knew she’d made a mistake.”
This book comes across as a simple, pretty clean romance. It’s more than that. Yes, the romance is present and the love scenes between Teague and Jodi are pretty steamy with out being at all graphic. This story brings in Troy, Teague’s older brother who has Down’s Syndrome. The book talks about all the things Troy CAN do, without focusing on what he can’t do. It talks about the prejudices that Troy, Teague, and Jodie encounter.
I like this book on many levels. It was on the surface a wonderfully gentle romance. Essentially childhood sweethearts finally being at a point in their lives where they can explore an adult relationship. It discusses the death of a parent and atoning for poor behavior during a time of grief. It even deals with small town mentalities and outsiders that don’t fit in.
At first when I finished this book, I felt that it had gone on too long. The story should have stopped about 75 pages before it did. I put it aside and thought about it for a few days, and came to the conclusion that I was wrong with my initial thoughts. I like how the story deals with all the threads and everything is brought to closure.
This book is the third Cowboy themed book that Joanne Kennedy has written. The other two books have received positive reviews by most reviewers. Pick up this book and settle in for a few hours of great reading!
For more information about Joanne Kennedy, visit her website. This book is a new release available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble