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His Kind of Cowgirl by Karen Rock with Giveaway

His Kind of Cowgirl by Karen Rock with Giveaway

Today I have a contemporary cowboy themed romance from Karen Rock and Harlequin. Please read on for my review and excerpt, check out the tour stops to see what other readers thought of the title and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win  a $50 Amazon Gift Card, and autographed print copies of HIS HOMETOWN GIRL, RAISING THE STAKES and WISH ME TOMORROW. But first …

His Kind of Cowgirl

Second chance stories always intrigue me: characters are older, have more experience and often more baggage, and reinforcing the ‘it’s meant to be’ feel is nice.  And Claire and Tanner now have that chance, even with the many obstacles in the way.

Years ago, Claire and Tanner were a thing: but he also was obsessed with the rodeo and bull riding, and took his chance at a life chasing those eight seconds. Left behind, Claire did move forward: married and made a life. But now, widowed with a son Jonathan, her father having suffered a stroke and a ranch that is having financial issues, her plate is full. And while she has wonderful relationships with her son, father and the animals, OMG Claire – let go of the reins a bit.  There is ZERO daring in Claire – perhaps she used it all up when she was younger but helicopter caretaker (not just Mom) doesn’t come close to her approach.

Tanner is far more relaxed and matter of fact about life and unexpected events – but he’s also not particularly observant, and of course, he has issues. Perhaps some are from the guilt of leaving Claire, his need to ‘prove himself’ now as he did in the ring, but he wasn’t passively accepting everything Claire was handing out.  And Oh Did They Fight. About everything. Constantly.  I am not a fan of conflict carried to the point where I wanted the characters to STOP interacting: from hiding secrets and regrets and their inability to actually talk out a situation instead of instantly jumping to the wrong conclusions…repeatedly.  It was that relationship that you can’t see the couple AS a couple, and find excuses to avoid dinners with them.

And then, there’s the big secret (which really isn’t) and the moment where all the growth that the two had experienced went south with yet another conflict and plenty of harsh words.  To be honest, I had just started to come around to liking Claire, and if not agreeing with her choices I could understand, and with a handful of harsh words and a retreat to her old patterns I was again wanting to Shake. Her. Silly.  Yep – it only takes a moment.

Rating this was incredibly difficult – I disliked Claire’s behavior for the majority of the book – she isn’t a mean person, but thoughtless when she’s scrambling to convince herself, and everyone else she’s in the right. And Tanner just sort of meandered through for me, clueless to the dynamics around him more often than not. I was intrigued and emotionally involved, angered and frustrated – I cared what happened and needed to know how the story would end. But the tension and discomfort from the repeated arguments and refusal to see what a blind man would have was more frustrating than I thought possible.  If you are up for a read that challenges, this is it.

His Kind of Cowgirl by Karen Rock with Giveaway

Title: His Kind of Cowgirl
Author: Karen Rock
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Western
Published by: Harlequin
ISBN: 0373367791
Published on: 1 March 2016
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 368
Rated: three-half-stars
Heat: One FlameOne Flame

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About the Book:


Would he still love her…if he knew?

Tanner Hayes smashed Claire's life to pieces when he chose the rodeo over her ten years ago. And now he'd wrecked her truck! Fantastic. She'd lost her husband, the family ranch was mired in debt, her father was recuperating from a stroke and her son was being bullied. Why not throw a reckless bull rider into the mix?

All she'd wanted was a safe, stable life. But with Tanner back in town—and staying on her ranch—nothing was safe, or under control. Not the feelings she'd fought so hard to forget. Not the son she was determined to protect. And certainly not her long-held secret…

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

Header - Excerpt - Tasty

Everything happened at once and in slow motion.

A crushing jolt shuddered through the truck. Her wheels skidded sideways. She smacked against the window when her pickup rolled down an embankment, as if punched by something large and lethal. Glass rained deadly sharp. The earth tumbled around her, her truck in spin cycle. When a massive tree loomed, the Chevy slammed into it then stilled.

Winded and stunned, she hung upside-down in her lap belt, blood, metallic and warm, on her tongue, a rushing sound whistling in her ears. Her heartbeat changed and grew slow and rolling in darkness. Something hurt, a long way away. Then nothing.

“Ma’am. Ma’am. Are you all right?” A man’s voice shouted, rousing her. She tried turning her head but pain held it in place. When she opened her mouth, silent panic flew out.

“Hold on. I’m getting you out of there.”

Acrid smoke pierced her consciousness. She closed her eyes against the billowing grit.

This wasn’t happening. It was a dream. No. A nightmare.

A tugging motion jerked her right and left, followed by a ripping sound. Large hands halted her sudden fall.

“Got you.”

Her rescuer cradled her against his chest, his breaths heaving beneath her ear. After carrying her some distance, he lowered her slowly to the ground. Grass scraped against her stinging cheeks and she opened her eyes.

“What?” she croaked, then swiped at the trickle leaking from her mouth. A man wearing a cowboy hat hunched over her, his features blurred.

“You’ve been in an accident. We have. Our trucks collided in the intersection.”

“My truck!” She bolted upright and clutched the swirling ground.

An arm snaked around her back and eased her down. “I called the dispatcher. The fire department’s on the way.”

A wail sounded in the distance and Claire wanted to shriek with it.

Her special day. Her anniversary. Ruined. No. Demolished by this…this…

She squinted upward and focused. A dark swirl of hair brushed across the tall man’s forehead; a light scar zigzagged down his square jaw. Recognition zapped through her.

It couldn’t be…

“Tanner?”

“Hello, Claire.” His mouth went up, just a fraction—the same ready-for-anything smile that had once undone her.

She closed her eyes, heart thudding. Ten years since she’d vowed never to see him again…and now here he stood, two for two in wrecking her life.

 

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About Karen Rock

Karen Rock is an award-winning YA and adult contemporary romance author. She holds a master's degree in English and was an ELA instructor before becoming a full-time writer. Currently she writes for Harlequin Blaze and Harlequin Heartwarming. Her novel, A LEAGUE OF HER OWN, won the 2015 National Excellence in Romance Fiction award in contemporary romance series and the 2015 Bookseller's Best award for contemporary romance, long.

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