A Rancher’s Honor
Harlequin American Romance, Jun 3 2014, $5.50
In Prosperity, Montana, thirty-something day care provider Lana Carpenter reels from the news that her ex Brent and his second wife Julia are expecting. Her BFF Kate commiserates with Lana by taking her to Bitter & Sweet Bar and Grill where she has too much to drink and leaves with a cowboy. The next morning Lana awakens with a hangover as her only company at the Prosperity Inn. In the bathroom the cowboy left her aspirins, bottled water and a thank you note for a great time.
Rancher Sly Pettit and neighbor Tim Carpenter of the Lazy C Ranch are enemies ever since someone poisoned several of the former’s cattle. Sly tried to get information from Tim, but only received a rifle pointed at his chest; so now he is suing. Sly and Lana begin a no-strings tryst after that wonderful night; only the main problem is she is Tim’s cousin. However, a new complication surfaces when Lana becomes pregnant and he does not want children after a painful childhood filled with what he regards as personal failure.
This Prosperity, Montana ranch romance is an engaging contemporary with fully developed flawed lead characters and a solid cast consisting of mostly family members. Sly’s traumas affirm the adult is the child. While Lana’s belief in family divides her between a need to begin a new one and her loyalty to kin; as ironically she handles his family issues with courage and her family issues with cowardice.