Rhonda Lee Carver
Once upon a time, Weston Jericho could have any woman he wanted, but these days he’s known as “daddy” and less “bachelor of the year”. His daughter and his ranch are his priority until country-girl-turned-city waltzes back into his average life. She’ll have him juggling daddy duties with the need to be near the one woman who stole his heart years ago.
Her father’s declining health leaves Sammie Tanner with no other choice but to come home to Colton, Texas and get things back in order on the ranch, and face those she left behind. From the second her boots cross the county line she finds nothing but trouble, especially with Weston who has her cursing like the backwoods country girl he remembers, and still desires.
Her heart wants the cowboy, but how does she reveal the true reason why she left him…left home? Will he look at her the same? Can she take the risk?
This story opens with Weston helping his neighbor Lucas and discovering the amount of neglect of his property. Concerned he notifies Lucas’ daughter, Samantha.
Now Samantha was on a date with her business partner Brady, a date where she realizes she really has no feelings for the man. The voice mail from Weston is just what she needs. A reason to get away.
This is a favorite scene after Weston picks her up when her rental breaks down.
If he’d wanted to grab her attention, he had it. Her mouth fell open and her eyes widened. “Did I hear you correctly or do I have heat stroke? He fell? Then stitched himself up?”
“Are you more surprised that he fell or the fact that he decided to fix himself?”
“Looking at things closer, maybe the fall because we both know he’s a stubborn man. He has always refused going to the doctor, especially after mom died. I think he’s afraid to hear that he needs to stop eating bacon and eggs every morning.”
“Well, he might be a bit more stubborn these days.”
“I’m sensing there’s more than meets the eye. What are you not telling me?”
There was a lot he could tell her, but he didn’t want to scare her off. And yet, he had to clue her in that things weren’t running smoothly back on her homestead. “He’s let things go.”
“’Go’ as in he’s loosened up in the last years, or ‘go’ as in I’m walking into a mess?”
“Probably a bit of both.”
“Is Braise still the foreman? He started working there before I was born and I always thought of him as an uncle.”
“He’s still there. You know he wouldn’t jump ship, but several of the hands have, causing a problem with keeping up with everything.”
“Why are they leaving?”
He shrugged. “These are all rumors, but I’ve heard he fired a few and the rest he just hasn’t paid so they had no choice but to find other work.”
She paled. “I wondered if this was a ploy to get me back here to take over the wheels at Tanner Ranch. I think things are worse than I suspected, but I can’t stay. Colton is no longer my home. Daddy always wanted me to be the son he never had.”
“Come on, Sam. I remember a time when you had big plans for the ranch. You went off and got that important degree hoping to put it to use out here. Don’t pretend with me, you hear?”
“Who knows at age five what they want to be as an adult? I think from the very beginning I was expected to fall into line, marry me some cowboy and support him in running the land. Hell, every time I told Daddy about my ideas, he blew me off. He took more stock in what his hands had to say than his own flesh and blood.”
“I’ll agree, he has traditional beliefs, but I think if you’d have stuck around, you would have seen him come to terms, make a complete turnaround. Don’t forget, whether you like it or not, Tanner Ranch is your legacy. Whatever you choose to do, keep in mind this is Lucas’s home, handed down generations. He wants what’s best.”
“Are you defending him?” Her smile faded.
“Nope. Just sayin’, that’s all. By the way, he has no clue that you’re coming. He would have raised cane if he knew I called you.”
“So, he didn’t ask for me to be here?” She wrapped her arms over her chest.
He looked over. “Whether he realizes it or not, he needs your help.”
“We didn’t quite part ways on a happy note. Things just keep getting worse. I invited him to Chicago, but he wasn’t interested.”
Weston laughed. “Do you really need me to respond to that?”
“Chicago is a wonderful place, even for cowboys.”
“I heard it is, but he’s not getting any younger, SeeSa—I mean, Sam. Whatever troubles you two cooked up between you, everything needs to be washed clean before it’s too late. You’re right, he’s stubborn, but so are you. Otherwise, you’d have been back years ago.”
She squinted. “No, I wouldn’t. I’m here to help him, but let’s be clear, I no longer belong here. If he needs more help than I can give, then we’ll carry out another plan, none of which tie me to Colton.”
Carver, Rhonda Lee. Weston’s Trouble (Saddles & Second Chances Book 3) (Kindle Locations 668-706). Kindle Edition.
Sam was in for a shock as she goes over the books and surveys the ranch. He father less than helpful, she goes to Weston for help.
As they work together to get the ranch up to where it’s profitable again, the spark between them re-ignites. But will it be enough to get Sam to stay.
An enjoyable read with a couple of surprises, an ex-wife and a father who needs to remember how to love.
I did have a problem with the editing, admiral instead of admirable was just one.
4 Contented Purrs for Rhonda and a hiss for editing.
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Rhonda Lee Carver is a published book writer with a collection of print and eBooks under her wing. She is also a freelance editor. Her first book was published with Wild Rose Press in 2010.
She writes everything from contemporary to steamy to paranormal to suspense…you name it, she’s written it. Her specialty is writing men who love to get their hands dirty—hardworking, blue collar, heroes in everyday life.
When Rhonda isn’t crafting edge-of-your-seat, sizzling novels, you’ll find her with her children and husband watching soccer, watching a breathtaking movie, traveling to exotic places (with Bora Bora on her bucket list), doing (or trying) yoga, saving cats and dogs, and finding new ways to keep life interesting.
Rhonda thrives on making her readers happy. She believes life can be a challenge, but reading is a place where fantasy comes to life. Her motto: “Everyone deserves romance—one page at a time.“