“There, buried in the dead, brown, grass: a little green stem. New life pushing its way through, as it always seemed to do. A little sign of hope.”
It was only recently (as in this year) that I started diving into the world of romance literature. I was always worried that they were too mushy and far-fetched. But I was wrong! When J.L. Cole sent me her book and I read the synopsis, I knew that this was a book that I needed to read.
Synopsis: Rayna marries Ethan Miller, moves from the city to his family’s ranch, and becomes a rancher’s wife within a year. She struggles with the obvious disapproval of her Mother-in-law Carol, the restless feeling of being alone at the house all day, and the desire to help her new husband with his work. When she takes a chance and tries to help out, things end badly and everybody in town seems to know about it immediately.
Heartbreak and disappointment seem to be lurking around every corner in Rayna’s life. But is her life really as bad as the things it is? In order to hold on to her marriage and her ranch, Rayna and her new family must learn to work together, look to the horizon, and let go of the anger and hurt in the past.
Review: I flew through this book. My heart has a soft spot for ranches, farms, and small towns so the setting immediately stuck out for me. J.L. Cole did a great job of describing the surroundings just enough to build her vision for the place, while leaving enough for your imagination to add some personal touches.
The story is told from multiple character’s viewpoints. In some books I have read, this is where I tend to get confused about the story line and the “he said, she said” aspect of the plot. But Cole did a great job of creating unique voices for each character that held through to the end. The inclusion of so many voices helped the story round out and give you a sense of place within the Miller family.
What I really loved about this book was that the characters, their ups and downs, fights and apologies, all felt realistic. This was not a super mushy love story but it was honest: I liked that. It showcases the pain marriages grow through and the need for communication and trust between a husband and wife. Because it felt so real, it was easy to connect to and sink my teeth into.
I loved this book. It was an honest and vulnerable approach to a western romance that left me wanting more!
This book will be hitting the shelves on August 13 from Black Rose Writing! Keep your eyes open or go preorder it on their website or on Amazon now!
Plus, this book was the Romance Runner Up for the Maxy Awards!