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review 2015-05-20 21:43
REVIEW: "A Texan's Luck" by Jodi Thomas
A Texan's Luck - Jodi Thomas

Read for the 2015 TBR Challenge--May--Kickin' It Old School.  The challenge is hosted by Wendy the Super Librarian.  


Why I Chose It For My TBR Challenge Read: I read the first two Wife Lottery books back in 2010 and I requested the third book through Paperback Swap in 2011.  Then I lost interest in western romances for awhile and A Texan's Luck just got pushed farther back on the TBR shelf.

Western-themed romances are a genre that I (strangely) enjoy especially since I always get bored with western TV shows or movies.  But, there is something about post-Civil War America that intrigues me in fiction and that is how I got introduced to the Wife Lottery series.  It took me some time to get to A Texan's Luck, but it was an enjoyable experience.


The basis of this series is that three women show up in a small town sheriff's office and confess to accidentally killing a man who was trying to rob them.  Rather than letting them rot in jail, the sheriff decides to use this incident to find wives for the men of the town.  The three women agree to have men chose to bail them out in exchange for marriage.  Readers of this series have to just take the odd premise and run with it.  What helps make it bearable is that the sheriff had good intentions with the wife lottery and just wanted the women to be settled and happy.


Lacy was only fifteen when she was entered in the wife lottery.  She was chosen by Mr. Larson, an elderly man, as a wife for his son, Walker, when he returned from serving in the army.  Mr. Larson ran the print shop in the town and spent the next three years training Lacy to take over the business.  After he died, Lacy traveled to meet her husband for the first time, but things didn't go as she planned and she returned to Cedar Point alone.  Now, Walker is back on an order from his superior officer to protect Lacy from the man that she and the other women thought they killed five years earlier.


I really enjoyed the characterization of Lacy and Walker.  Lacy is independent, smart, and a hard-worker who just wants to feel like she belongs somewhere.  Walker never wanted a wife and finds himself at a loss when dealing with her.  The book basically has these two circling around while figuring out to live together until Lacy is safe.  Their relationship takes time to develop which I appreciated especially since they had only laid eyes on one another once before.  Both Lacy and Walker have some adjustments to make and I had fun reading their bickering.


Besides the love story, A Texan's Luck has a subplot dealing with Zeb Whitaker, the man that tried to rob the women at the beginning of the series.  He didn't die and now believes that one of the women has the gold that he had with him at the time.  There is quite a bit of danger associated with Whitaker, but I never felt like it overshadowed the main storyline.


Readers of the series will be happy to see cameos from Bailee and Carter (The Texan's Wager) and Nell and Ranger Dalton who get their own story in The Texan's Reward.  Despite these appearances, this book can be read as a stand-alone and I recommend it for fans of sweet western romances.

Source: feministfairytalereviews.blogspot.com/2015/05/2015-tbr-challenge-review-atexans-luck.html
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review 2014-09-19 20:24
REVIEW: "Broken" by Lauren Layne
Broken - Lauren Layne

I read and LOVED Isnt't She Lovely, the prequel, so I had to request Broken when I saw it on Netgalley. This book focuses on the character of Olivia Middleton (the ex-girlfriend of Ethan, the hero in Isn't She Lovely) and her attempt to decrease her guilt over their break-up. I will admit that, while I was excited to read this, I was a little hesitant due to the way that Olivia was portrayed in the previous book, but, thankfully, she is redeemed and I really liked her by the end. While you definitely could read this as a stand-alone, I think it works better as a sequel so you can truly appreciate the growth of Olivia as a character.

The basic plot is that New York socialite Olivia drops out of college in order to act as a caretaker for a war veteran as a self-imposed penance for cheating on her ex-boyfriend. Things get complicated when she meets Paul Langdon and realizes that he is not the frail old man she was expecting. Then these two spend a significant amount of time arguing and circling around each other while they deal with their growing feelings. While the romance is a major aspect of the plot, I appreciated the fact that Paul and Olivia's development was even more important.

Olivia is trying to escape her past while Paul just wants to be left alone. Interestingly, they come from similar backgrounds, but took very different paths after high school. Their close proximity first causes some friction due to the fact that Paul does not want a caretaker and Olivia is determined to prove herself as capable and trustworthy. But, they do start to talk and become closer. There are the normal conflicts like when Paul ventures out of the house for the first time in forever and then when someone from Olivia's past pops in unexpectedly. I did appreciate the slow burn of the love story and how well Lauren Layne made me aware of how good these two were together.

Broken is part of a recent string of NA stories that have caused me quite a bit of surprise this year. While I have always enjoyed a few here and there, I have found myself lucky in this genre lately and I believe I can officially say that I am a fan of New Adult romances. There are definitely some plot points I still won't touch and I will definitely continue to research any books that I'm interested in like always, but I'm happy to be getting more into this genre that is just growing in popularity. If you are a fan of NA, I highly recommend both Broken and its prequel, Isn't She Lovely, for the wonderful writing style and lack of drama for drama's sake.


I received a free copy of this book from Flirt via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Source: feministfairytalereviews.blogspot.com/2014/09/review-broken-by-lauren-layne.html
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review 2014-04-07 20:05
REVIEW: "Acts of Faith" by A.M. Arthur
Acts of Faith - A.M. Arthur

It was great to see Rey and Sam's story continuing in Acts of Faith. Seeing them adjust to such a change in their relationship with the arrival of Rey's daughter, Faith, really showed how awesome they are together. Both of them have issues they need to deal with, but they do with like adults and together. The major issue I had with this book was the character of David who was really interesting and just seemed to disappear in the later third of the story. I hope that A.M. Arthur continues this series and focuses on David soon.

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