Friday, February 19, 2016

Count on a Cowboy - Patricia Thayer (HAR #1585 - Mar 2016)

Series: Rocky Mountain Twins (Book 1)


Stepping onto her estranged father's Colorado ranch, Brooke Harper hopes to find the missing piece of the puzzle that's left a hole in her heart -- her long-lost sister. But the Bucking Q Ranch is deserted…except for the tall and rugged cowboy, Trent Landry, who is taking care of the place while the owners are away. She's determined to wait until the family she's never met returns home…

And Trent will keep an eye on the mysterious Brooke until he finds out if she is telling the truth about finding her sister. Spending time alone with her, watching her take to ranch life as if she's a natural, he realizes she is definitely not a threat -- except maybe to his heart.

Very good book. Brooke's mother has developed Alzheimer's and has let slip the fact that Brooke has a twin sister. Now she has been charged with making contact with Laurel and bringing her to see their mother. Brooke is happy to know that she has a sister, but is worried about what her reaction to the news will be. When Brooke arrives at the ranch, she discovers that her sister and father are gone, leaving their neighbor Trent to look after things.

Trent is suspicious of Brooke at first, especially after he calls her father. Rory judges Brooke by what he knows of her mother and that isn't good. Keeping a close eye on her is no hardship, as Trent finds her beautiful and intriguing. I loved the way he did that by including her in ranch activities. I liked Trent's protectiveness toward his friends, and how that quickly extended to Brooke.

Even though she grew up in Las Vegas, Brooke takes to ranch life very quickly. There are some really fun scenes of her as she learns to ride and deals with the aftereffects of time in the saddle. She and Trent form a connection very quickly, but hesitate to think in terms of a future. Trent is carrying a boatload of guilt from the death of his little brother years ago, and thinks that makes him a bad bet for a relationship. As much as Brooke would like to think of staying in Colorado, she is committed to returning to Vegas to her job and taking care of her mother. Plus, there's more to her visit than she has shared with Trent, and she's certain that it will affect the way he looks at her.

I loved seeing them grow closer. When Laurel and Rory return to the ranch, things get both better and worse for Brooke. I loved seeing Trent's protectiveness toward Brooke and how he tried to ease things for her. Their attraction grew stronger and I loved seeing Brooke go after what she wanted from him, even though she knew there was no future. Trent is surprised by the strength of his feelings for her and begins to consider the possibility of more.

Then Brooke overhears something that sends her back to Vegas without revealing the biggest part of her news, hurt by the rejection she experienced. I ached for her and the loss she felt. I loved seeing Trent's confrontation with Rory, and Rory's shock at what he learns. I loved Trent's big moment as he shows Brooke exactly how he feels. The ending was emotional and the epilogue a nice segue into Laurel's story.

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