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review 2019-01-04 03:03
Gunsmoke and Lace

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4 stars as a whole. A collection of short stories that leaves you wanting for more. They read like slivers from bigger novels. However, as the author explains in the author note, these stories weren't meant to become full-length novels. I've been meaning to read this collection since I bought it but anthologies aren't my favorite things so I kept pushing it back. Right now I'm glad I finally read it. :)

I liked all the stories, though some more than the others. Following is a short review of all 4 of them. I'll just copy the blurb and try to express what I felt about that particular story with my rating after each:

The Telegraph Tree
Desperate and alone, Maura Killion writes notes to God and ties them to a scrawny tree. But who's writing new ones?

4 stars. This one probably had the strongest message of never giving up on hopes and dreams than the other 3. A widow basically living in the middle of nowhere with a small baby to feed, who was gradually giving up on life because of the tough living condition and acute loneliness, finds hope anew in a message for her, tied on a tree on her land. I really liked it, though the following bugged me; how come she never saw/noticed who it was leaving those messages. From the description it didn't sound like the tree was too far away. In any case, the story was way too short for me to even seriously think of it. Would've loved for it to have a few more chapters.

Moon Dog Night
Bounty hunter Bonner Raine is surprised to see a nine-year-old boy and his little sister riding into his camp. The boy wears a gun and holster, determined to find the outlaw who took their mother. But will they find her alive? Or dead?

4 stars. Also loved this one a lot. Very short but packed a lot of punch. The story pretty much goes as noted in the blurb. The ending was about finding a new lease on life for both Bonner and his prospective sweetheart. If you're looking for full-on romance you won't find any. BUT, there's the hint of a new beginning that I simply adored. Could've been a great full-length novel IMO.

The Gunslinger
Skye O'Rourke thinks she's seeing a desert mirage when a gunslinger staggers across her field and awakens buried memories. But do second chances really exist for people like them?

3 stars. I wanted to like this one but I didn't as much as the previous 2. Skye was a widow and the gunslinger was someone from her past. They had a history, which is all good. However I hated the way they simply forgot about her deceased husband like he was a nobody, considering the gunslinger is also related to him. He wasn't a bad person from the meager description of things. His only failure was he couldn't make Skye love him the way she did the other man. And now that he's dead he didn't matter at all? Poor guy. :(

Hard Luck
Bank robbing isn't ever easy—especially when it's in Hard Luck, Texas. Logan and Wade discover that crime doesn't pay, and love can come from unexpected places.

3 stars. This one read more like an excerpt of a bigger story than the rest. There was no exact beginning or ending that can mark it a story on it's own. A robbery going wrong introduces us to two childhood friends; one is relatively smart, the other... not so much. From there we find them attending a dance not expecting much yet ending up with prospective sweethearts. Love? I'm not so certain in such a short space. In time, maybe for Logan. But Wade? I doubt it.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-05-26 11:48
To Marry a Texas Outlaw
To Marry a Texas Outlaw (Men of Legend Book 3) - Linda Broday

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To Marry a Texas Outlaw is the book 3 of Linda Broday’s Men of Legend series. It was my most anticipated installment of the series because of how much I adored the H, Luke. Since being introduced in book 1, I’ve been waiting for his story. Sadly, have to say it wasn’t how I expected it to be.

Much like Bachelors of Battle Creek, the other series of Linda Broday that I read and loved, Men of Legend focuses on a family or a ‘band of brothers’ if you can call them. Even though, the brothers of Bachelors of Battle Creek series weren’t brothers by blood, these Legends brothers certainly are! The first book focuses on Sam Legend, a former Texas Ranger, who was estranged from his family because of the demands his job used to put on him. Houston is his older brother and shoulders the responsibility of the huge Legend ranch called Lone Star. They met Luke, a brother they didn’t know existed, in Sam’s story.

Sam had enjoyed his job as a Texas Ranger until he thought death had finally caught up with him. A pretty terrifying description is given at the beginning of book 1, To Love a Texas Ranger, when he’s almost hanged by a group of outlaws. When he thought he was done for, a known outlaw he’s been chasing, Luke Weston becomes his unexpected savior. Luke has been so elusive that Sam had a tough time tracking him down, unable to catch him even once despite Sam’s expertise. Yet there was this odd game was being played between the two where Luke seems to chase Sam just as much as he did. And they enjoyed it as well. Why, he couldn’t tell. Until the day Luke saved his life, Sam wouldn’t have thought he’s capable of any good deed. Now he’s willing to rethink his opinion of the outlaw.

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review 2018-05-01 16:23
Great Story and Characters
The Heart of a Texas Cowboy (Men of Legend) - Linda Broday

Today was Houston’s wedding day. He was marrying Becky the only girl he had ever loved. She was ten and Houston was twelve when he fell in love with Becky.  His brother Sam was hurrying him up. Sam had been a Texas Ranger until he married Sierra and now he was the sheriff of Lost Point, Texas. Their father Stoker was glad Sam was close to the Lone Star ranch- home- now. Sam and Houston wondered if their other brother luke would make it to the wedding. He was out looking for the man who set him up for murder. Luke had a thousand dollar price on his head for robbery and the murder of a federal judge -Edgar Percival. Luke did show up for the wedding But then a shot rang out and Becky cried out and as she collapsed houston caught her and blood oozed from her chest. Luke whirled and fired and Sam jumped over bodies to capture the shooter. Becky died in Houston’s arms. Houston sat next to Becky’s cold body holding on to hre bloody weil. He wanted to grieve in private. He wanted to be left alone in the darkness of his soul. In the shadows he could pretend it was all a dream and Becky would wake up. Houston was lost in a thick haze . little thought could penetrate. Houston didn’t know how he could live without Becky. But then he found out from the man- Ernie Newman that killed Becky- that she had been cheating on Houston and was pregnant by the man- but was going to marry Houston anyway and lie to him as he would be a way better provider. The Doc conformed all this. Her lover had shot an killed Becky and his unborn child. Houston vowed never to trust love again. He would never speak Becky’s name again or allow it to be said in his presence. Betrayal still tore Houston to the core. But Luke’s life was a tangled mess worse than Houston’s. Luke and his brothers went for a ride. Luke said the man who had set him up and really murdered edgar Percival  was going by the name of Ned Sweeney. Luke asked if they could ask around and send some telegrams to see if anyone had heard of a man around going by that name. Sam said he still had ties with the Texas Rangers and his old boss captain O’Rielley. Sam and Houston had access to to people and Places Luke didn’t have. Luke had helped get rid of a outlaw mess and saved the people of the town and made that part of texas safer. Luke had also saved his brother Sam and the woman Sam was to marry Sierra. Houston felt it would take him a lifetime to forget the woman who ruined him. Lara Boone had been attacked,beaten, raped, and scarred and ended up pregnant and now a mother of a baby girl she named Gracie. Lara now needs protection from a very evil man that will stop at nothing to possess her. Stoker had lost at gambling and had put the Lone Star Ranch up for collateral. Now he came to Houston and said he had to marry a neighbor or they would lose the ranch. Houston agrees knowing he really doesn’t have a choice. Lara’s father held Stoker’s gambling debt and he would forget it if Houston married Lara and gave Gracie his last name. Lara agrees to the marriage for her daughter’s sake that she would have a last name. Lara and houston meet at the altar. Houston is on a tight schedule to take his cattle on a cattle drive and he has to find a cook. Lara volunteers to be the cook and goes with Houston. Gracie wraps houston around her little finger. Then that horrible man brings fear into the lives of Houston and Lara and the people they are protective of.

I loved this book. I loved the plot and the pace. I didn’t want to put the book down.this had my attention from the first page until the last. I was happy when Houston decided he really wanted his marriage to Lara to work. I loved watching Houston and Lara grow into a loving relationship. This was an emotional roller coaster and action packed and I loved it. If you read the books in order this will make more sense and you will have the background you need for this to run even smoother for you. I loved Lara and Houston together. Gracie added to this book also. I also loved how Houston saw Lara’s scar after he lifted her veil and he told Lara she was beautiful and he was a very lucky man. Also loved how Houston called Gracie his “ Little Angel”. I really couldn’t find anything to criticize while reading this book and loved that. I loved the characters and the ins and outs of this book and I highly recommend.

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review 2018-02-01 00:03
The Cowboy Who Came Calling by Linda Broday
The Cowboy Who Came Calling (Texas Heroes) - Linda Broday

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really liked this book. I first read Linda Broday last year when I decided to pick up the first book in this series, Knight on the Texas Plains, which I ended up loving. I knew as soon as I saw this book that I would have to read it and I am glad that I did. I really had a wonderful time getting to know Glory, Luke, and all the other characters in this story and wanted to see them get their happy ending.

I loved the first meeting between Glory and Luke. Their paths do quickly cross in town but their first real meeting goes horribly wrong when Glory accidentally shoots Luke. She takes him home to tend to his wounds and let him recover. Luke gets to know the Day family pretty quickly since Glory's youngest sister, Patience, like to share whatever comes to her mind. Luke sees how much responsibility is on Glory's shoulders and seems to understand how troubled she is.

I liked the characters in this story quite a bit. Luke was great. He is a really good man that wants to help. He will do the right thing and somehow seems to see things that others may miss. Glory was a strong character. She is tough and does what needs to be done to take care of her family. She has a lot of pride and wants to take care of things herself. It did drive me a bit nuts when she made a big deal of Luke's offer to help because she really needed the help but I understood why she behaved as she did. Glory's sisters, Hope and Patience, were wonderful. Hope was a a hard working girl who was a great support to her sisters and family. Patience was a wonderful child who added more than a few smiles to the story.

I liked Luke and Glory together. I thought that their personalities really seemed to work well together. Luke didn't see Glory's responsibilities as a negative but was happy to take them on himself. Glory didn't always seem to know how to handle Luke and had a lot of doubts but she did care for him. I would have liked to see a bit more of Luke and Glory together. There seemed to be someone around to interrupt them during most of the scenes where they had a moment alone. 

I would recommend this book to others. I had a great time reading this wonderful romance filled with fantastic characters. This is the second book in the Texas Heroes series but could easily be read as a stand alone since it tells its own story. I look forward to reading more from Linda Broday very soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Sourcebooks Casablanca via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I enjoyed this story. Luke and Glory were both great characters and I thought that the way they came together was exciting. Glory has more than her share of hardships and Luke wants to help as much as he can. Glory's sisters added a lot to the story.

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review 2017-11-11 02:07
To Marry a Texas Outlaw by Linda Broday
To Marry a Texas Outlaw (Men of Legend) - Linda Broday

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really enjoyed this romance. I just discovered Linda Broday a few months ago when I read Knight on the Texas Plains and knew I wanted read more of her writing so I jumped on the chance to read this book. This is the third book in the Men of Legend series and I was a bit concerned going in since I have not read the earlier books. I had nothing to worry about and can assure readers that this book works well as a stand alone. I am so glad that I decided to read this wonderful little story.

This book opens with a bang. Luke finds a woman tied up and her captors flee. He has very important business to take care of but he just can't leave her. She is covered in blood and has no memory of who she is and what has happened. Luke is a wanted man and it seems that the woman he rescued may be in the same situation.

Luke and Josie were wonderful characters. Luke may be a wanted man but he was always thinking about how his actions affected others in his life. He really was a very caring man. Josie doesn't remember anything about her life but it was obvious what kind of person she was right away. She was very strong and I was eager to find out more about her. I thought that Luke and Josie were wonderful together. They seemed to really compliment each other and were always able to be open with each other. The chemistry between them was intense from the very beginning of the book and only got stronger as I continued to read.

There was a lot going on in this book. I had a great time learning more about how Luke became an outlaw and how Josie ended up in the situation she was in at the start of the book. Add in a little drama with a child they run into who happens to know Josie and some problems at the ranch and you have a really exciting story. There was never a boring moment in this book.

I would recommend this book to fans of western historical romances. I had so much fun reading this one and am really excited to go back and read the earlier books in the series. Linda Broday has created a wonderful family of characters in this delightful series.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Sourcebooks Casablanca via NetGalley.

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