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The Bride Wore Starlight: Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys #3 by Lizbeth Selvig with Giveaway

The Bride Wore Starlight: Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys #3 by Lizbeth Selvig with Giveaway

Today I present the third book in the Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys series by Lizbeth Selvig, a wonderful contemporary romance series that brings happy endings to the women of the Paradise Ranch.  This is Joely’s story, the middle child with a series of challenges to face, not the least of which is losing her self-defeating and self-pitying attitude. Be sure to read my review and excerpt, check out the tour stops to see what other readers thought and don’t forget to enter the tour wide giveaway where you could win a BlueFire Digital Download Bundle of THE BRIDE WORE DENIM and THE BRIDE WORE RED BOOTS, books 1 & 2 in the Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys Series. But first …

The Bride Wore Starlight:

 

An accident just as she was starting to realign her life after finally declaring her marriage over, Joely lost her horse, many of her belongings and her ease of movement in a crash with an overloaded logging truck not far from Paradise Ranch.  Lucky to be alive, she was left with several scars, severe muscle damage in her leg and a bucketful of self-pity. Growing up, Joely had always been told by her father that she was ‘the pretty one’, and her dreams of veterinary school with an equine focus were ‘too much’. Always feeling a bit on the fringe with Harper and Mia’s battles or the triplet’s seeming unification, her self-esteem, determination and perseverance are at an all-time low.  But the joint wedding of her two older sisters, in which she tis meant to participate, brings her back to the family home.

Alec Morrissey is Mia’s husband to be’s friend and groomsman. A former bronc rider, he disappeared from the rodeo scene and the fame that went with it. He’s one of the only people who doesn’t seem to take Joely’s “I Can’t” for truth – prodding and pushing her forward, challenging her stubborn refusal to try, forcing her into facing her own lack of effort and fears about regaining her mobility.  But he’s not just speaking to her from a cheerleader’s perspective: he lost his leg in an IED blast, and spent many months learning to work with his prosthetic, even as he buried other issues in a hatbox in the closet.

These two spark off one another instantly, and bringing Joely face to face with her whinging and defeatist attitude is one of the first changes: she does make some early changes mostly due to her anger and a ‘how dare he’ response.  But she’s also intrigued by Alec, and finds his belief in her abilities, and the no-nonsense approach he takes to her attempts are far less annoying than the sense of being smothered and coddled she gets from her family.

It’s not a quick or particularly easy read in many places, Selvig has drawn us deeply into Joely’s depression and throws us right against the wall that Alec has built around himself: but these characters grow and develop a need for one another that is palpable. Alec is calmed and lightened by Joely’s presence, she’s challenged by and strengthened by his.  Most importantly, they prod and poke at one another in just the right way: making them face fears and issues that were long ignored, buried or even unknown. Together they do find the best, if not easiest, versions of themselves as they both grow up and change.  This is a story that grows on you, mixing laughter, tears, outrage and even some “OOH I need to SHAKE you silly” moments that had me reading through to the end.  Start this series from the beginning: you won’t regret it.

The Bride Wore Starlight: Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys #3 by Lizbeth Selvig with Giveaway

Title: The Bride Wore Starlight
Author: Lizbeth Selvig
Series: Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by: Avon Impulse
ISBN: 0062413961
Published on: February 9th 2016
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Pages: 384
Rated: five-stars
Heat: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame

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About the Book:

Once comfortable on stage in front of thousands, Joely Crockett is now mortified at the thought of walking—or rolling—down the aisle at her sisters’ wedding. Scarred and wheelchair-bound, the former beauty queen has lost more than the ability to walk—she’s lost her fire. But when one handsome, arrogant guest accuses her of milking her injuries and ignites her ire, Joely finally starts to feel truly alive again, and soon it’s impossible for her to resist her heart’s desire.

Alec Morrissey knows a little something about loss. A famous rodeo cowboy before he was injured in Iraq, he’s managed to create something of a normal life, even if it’s not the one he always imagined. Encountering stunning but damaged Joely, he sees a kindred spirit who can learn from his mistakes.

As these two healing souls begin to fall in love under the Wyoming stars, they must discover if they are willing to give in to the tragedies of life or fight for a future together.

See the Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys series on GoodReads

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

 

Header - Excerpt - Tasty

The contact with Alec’s strong, long-fingered hand didn’t do anything to quell the annoyance dancing in her stomach. Or was it attraction? Or just a very long time since a man had taken her hand?

He tugged gently and braced his feet so she could stand and get her solid leg beneath her.

Her eyes came level with his tie. That put him at roughly six feet, she thought inanely, although, in truth, no thoughts but inane ones filled her head. Up close his eyes shone a dark, rich amber, and his full, upturned lips made him appear prone to smiling. His hat looked so natural on him he might well have been born with it on.

He held out his right elbow. “Just think of me as a human hiking stick.”

He hadn’t said “cane.” He hadn’t said “crutch.” She offered a tentative, grateful smile, took a deep breath, and nodded.

What could have been horribly awkward turned out to be an easy partnership. Alec seemed to know instinctively how to step where she needed him for support, and his arm offered a perfect grip that she could lean into as firmly as she wanted. It took a dozen or so strides to get the coordination right, but slowly she figured out how to step firmly with her right leg and use Alec’s weight to help swing and step quickly with her left. She’d walked like this with crutches, but this felt so quasi normal—she almost enjoyed it.

Almost.

They came to the stairs, and she froze. A flat path was easy. Going up stairs was awkward but doable. But going down threw her weight forward, and she didn’t have the strength or balance to keep from pitching headfirst down the flight.

“We’re doing great,” he said. “There are only six.”

We’re doing fine,” he’d said. She didn’t know this man from any random person, and yet he knew how to speak as if they’d been doing this forever.

“I really should have a body on the other side, too,” she admitted reluctantly. “I suck at stairs.”

“Here’s the deal.” He removed her hand from his elbow and held it, then wrapped his right arm loosely around her waist. “It’s your balance that’s got you spooked. You haven’t practiced with it, but your left leg is strong enough. Trust yourself. You know the drill: bad leg—”

“First,” she finished. “Yes. But it doesn’t hold my weight.”

“Eventually it will, but for now we’ll step together, and you lean into me when you’re using that leg.”

How did he know so effortlessly what to do? He’d probably had plenty of bangs and bruises when he’d been on the rodeo circuit—maybe this was second nature for him.

They navigated the stairs like they’d been doing it for years. She’d never have made it on her own, and such an exercise had been clunky at best with a physical therapist. When she stood at the bottom without aid of a crutch or two side walkers, her satisfaction had to rival that of any successful mountain climber’s.

“Wow,” she said, unable to keep the pleasure from her voice.

“Why are you surprised? You’re a ranch girl; you’re tough.”

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About Lizbeth Selvig

Lizbeth Selvig writes fun, heartwarming contemporary romantic fiction for Avon books. Her debut novel, The Rancher and the Rock Star, was released in 2012. Her second, Rescued By A Stranger is a 2014 RWA RITA® Award nominee. Liz lives in Minnesota with her best friend (aka her husband), a hyperactive border collie named Magic and a gray Arabian gelding named Jedi. After working as a newspaper journalist and magazine editor, and raising an equine veterinarian daughter and a talented musician son, Lizbeth entered Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart® contest in 2010 with The Rancher and the Rock Star (then titled Songbird) and won the Single Title Contemporary category.
In her spare time, she loves being a brand new grandma to Evelyn Grace as well as to hike, quilt, read, horseback ride, and play with her four-legged grandchildren, of which there are nearly twenty, including a wallaby, an alpaca, a donkey, a pig, a sugar glider, and many dogs, cats and horses (pics of all appear on her website www.lizbethselvig.com). She loves connecting with readers—contact her any time!

 

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Comments

Lizbeth Selvig

Thanks so much for hosting my book on your wonderful blog today–and thanks, especially, for the wonderful, kind review. I appreciate it very much! Continued success with your blog–all your authors thank you for the support!