Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Cowboy’s Return-Susan Crosby

The Cowboy’s Return

Susan Crosby

Harlequin Special Edition, May 21 2013, $4.99

ISBN: 9780373657483

Mitch Ryder has been away from his family ranch in Red Valley, California for three mostly out of country years. His father demanded he come home so after ignoring three previous orders, Mitch returns to Northern California, but he drives past the Ryder Ranch delaying seeing his family a little longer.

When his truck Lulu dies near Barney Barnard’s spread, he walks to the house only to have a woman accost him for being late. Instead of going home, he takes a job on a neighbor’s farm; but conceals from his employer single mom Annie Barnard who his family is. His work is top rate and her attraction powerful, but his patient tender treatment of her ten year old son Austin makes him perfect. That is until she learns he is the prodigal son of the family trying to buy her farm.

The first Red Valley ranch romance is a terrific contemporary due to the triangle dynamics between the fully developed characters (including Austin). The Cowboy’s Return is a wonderful family drama as a lie of omission affirms what Walter Scott said: “Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive”; especially when the heart becomes involved.

Harriet Klausner

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