03 January 2016

Wild Cowboy Ways (Lucky Penny Ranch, Book 1)

Synopsis from back cover: 


Allie Logan isn't the type to land a hot hunk of cowboy. Truth is, she's given up on dating since shedding her no-good ex. But the new owner of the most ramshackle ranch in Texas might just change her mind about that. He's six-foot-plus of tall, dark, and charming—the kind of guy who could make a girl throw caution to the wind . . . or the kind of guy who could break her heart. 

Blake Dawson hopes he can make Lucky Penny Ranch finally live up to its name, but the property needs a ton of work. Allie and her carpentry skills are his best shot at getting things in order. Besides the fact that her brown eyes and dangerous curves have him roped and tied. Now Blake only needs to convince her that a wild cowboy can be tamed by love—and she's just the one to do it

Stats for my copy: Mass market paperback, Forever, 2015.

How acquired: Christmas gift

First line: The Lucky Penny had never lived up to its name and everyone in Texas knew it.

My thoughts: Fun fun fun! I'm coming to associate that word with Carolyn Brown. Fun characters, fun situations, fun reading! Blake Dawson moves onto the Lucky Penny Ranch to start clearing land and get the placed fixed up before his brother arrives in the summer with the first herd of cattle. The only issue I had with Blake was his name. What with him being a cowboy and all the country songs referenced, I kept picturing Blake Shelton, and I think I flipped the book closed several times to look at the cover picture, trying to get Shelton out of my head.

Blake has a reputation for being wild. Here in Dry Creek he hopes to shed that reputation and become a respected and welcome member of the community. But with every pretty woman who shows up at his door (and half the town shows up with food to welcome him), he automatically slips into his old persona of the flirty dirty cowboy, and has to keep reminding himself he doesn't want to be that person.

When Blake first meets Allie, driving a van with a carpentry company's name on the side, he asks her to look into fixing up his house. He assumes that some male member of her family is the carpenter, but once he realizes it is Allie herself I liked how he just took it in stride and didn't act surprised or amazed.

Allie and Blake were great together. Neither is looking for a relationship, and I loved watching them banter together, lust after each other and slowly realize and come to accept their true feelings for each other. I like characterization over plot, and Ms. Brown is good at creating multiple characters who are all individual and unique. Well, most of them – the three gossips were pretty much all the same but they added lots of color to the story!

I grew up in Texas, and when I read a book like this it makes me wonder what the hell I was thinking to shun the cowboys back in the day! 

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