25 January 2015

Against the Wind (Against Series/Raines of Wind Canyon, Book 1)

Synopsis from Goodreads: They were known as the "no-account Raines boys," but they've grown into successful, honorable men and everything they have, they've fought for tooth and nail. Now each of the three brothers has one last obstacle to overcome to claim what's eluding them: love.

Secrets don't stay buried long in cattle country. Sarah Allen, the beautiful girl who humiliated Jackson Raines in high school, is back in town. Not so long ago, she couldn't wait to leave Wind Canyon, Wyoming, in her dust. But, recently widowed, she has nowhere else to go and finds herself on Jackson's ranch. And despite everything, Jackson's finding himself reluctant to get rid of her.

Sarah brings her own kind of trouble, and he can't resist trouble. Enemies of her dead husband show up making threats, thinking she has something they're owed. They're not taking no for an answer, but what they will take is the one thing she has left—her daughter. Jackson's the only one who might be able to save little Holly and bring her home.

Stats for my copy: Mass market paperback, published by Mira Books, 2010.

My thoughts: I see/read/hear about Kat Martin's books all the time and everywhere. I've even bought some of her books, both new and used (I have eight other titles in my TBR pile), because the covers are so appealing. But this is the first one I've actually gotten around to reading.

Sarah Allen is a widow, who's husband was abusive and racked up so much debt, and failed to keep up payments on his life insurance policy, he managed to leave her pretty much penniless. He was found shot to death one morning. Now that probate is just about wrapped up Sarah has packed up her six year old daughter and moved from California back to her home town of Wind Canyon, Wyoming. She got a job at the local paper, and found a small cottage for rent. She doesn't realize until she's moved int the cottage that it, and the ranch it sits on, belong to Jackson Raines, who she humiliated in front of half the school one day when they were teenagers.

Jackson returns home from a trip to discover that his housekeeper has rented out the empty cottage that sits on his ranch to the girl he had a crush on in high school. When he had asked her to prom, she laughed in his face. He'd heard that she'd ended up marrying rich, which was apparently what mattered to her.

Jackson was a great character. He's pulled himself up from an impoverished childhood, made a lot of money working as a geologist, and now is living out his dream of running his own ranch. I like ranchers. He's also ex-military, and I like ex-military. He's not brooding or angtsy or arrogant (though he does tell Sarah he's a demanding lover, but that was not ever really backed up on the page). Which is ok,as he's got enough other stuff going for him.

He's hugely attracted to Sarah, though a little gun shy at first, still smarting from her rejection of him way back when. Like so many heroes in these romances, he thinks he has a good life and isn't necessarily looking for a wife, or a relationship even, or worrying about having a family just yet.

Enter Sarah. I liked her, though she didn't stand out too much over any other romance heroine. In high school she did care about money and her social status, and even though she had a bit of a crush on Jackson she rejected him out of fear of what her friends would think. In California Andrew sweep her off her feet, but the only good that ended up coming out of their her marriage was her daughter, Holly. Who I also liked – she's a cute kid, without being a precocious and too precious plot moppet. Now Sarah is just desperate to create a stable home for herself and her daughter, but an associate of her late husband has been hassling and threatening her about some disc he thinks she has. But she keeps all that a secret from Jackson at first, until the cottage is broken into and trashed. Andrew was involved in a lot of shady illegal business, which Sarah was well aware of, even if she didn't know the actual details. So I thought she was a little naive to think that she could just move away and the harassing business associate wouldn't find her or continue to harass her.

At the same time, I understood her need to establish independence for herself and not just rely on Jackson to take care of everything for her. And after the abuse she went through at Andrew's hands, the last thing she wants is another man in her life. Even so, it was a little frustrating the way she kept getting close to Jackson, and then pushing him away. Luckily he's a patient man.

Some of the plot,with the criminals after Sarah and the search for the disc, and Sarah refusing to involve any type of law enforcement even though it becomes apparent she and Holly are both in danger, seemed a little far fetched. But overall the story and the writing were enjoyable and I probably would whizzed through the whole book in just a couple of days if I hadn't been reading another book on my Kindle app during the day, and this one at night. Jackson's brothers both come in and out of the story, and they get their own stories in the next two books, and I'm already 66 pages into Gabe's book, AGAINST THE FIRE, and looking forward to Dev's book, AGAINST THE LAW. 

No comments:

Post a Comment