Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Book Review: "Can't Resist a Cowboy" (Elizabeth Otto)

Isn't it true that only those in your life who have experienced hardship, challenges, devastation, grief, are the ones who really understand where you've been?

Carrie Lynn Waite returns home to the ranch where she grew up to find that the ranch is in financial trouble and that her father has sold a majority share ... to the one man she's never stopped loving, and the one who broke her heart.

Former Marine Levi Haywood, honorably discharged after horrific injuries he was lucky to survive, owns the ranch adjacent to the Waite ranch, along with his two brothers. When he heard that his childhood love Carrie Lynn's family ranch was in trouble, he didn't hesitate to purchase a share to keep the place afloat and among friends.

Now if only he can convince Carrie that they could make a go of it together ... and to trust him with the secret she's carrying.

Allow me to introduce to you Can't Resist a Cowboy by romance author Elizabeth Otto, released just this week from Entangled Publishing's Indulgence imprint.

A successful romance seems to call for a strong hero, and there are few stronger, arguably, than a former Marine-turned-cowboy. Whatever makes that combination inordinately sexy and attractive is one of the finest qualities Levi Haywood possesses in this novel. Granted, he competes with his brothers, equally desirable, but Levi's underlying fear --- not being good enough --- makes him that much more vulnerable and sweetly approachable, even beneath the scintillating exterior.

For her part, Carrie, a diabetic since childhood, allows herself to be ruled by her fears (where Levi seems driven by his). Having been betrayed in the past, and with more diabetic shock episodes in her childhood than she can count on two hands' worth of fingers, she's determined not to put herself back in a situation where something could go wrong.

Of course, when that happens in real life, as in fiction, it means people miss out on what they might otherwise have enjoyed and loved. The thing about regret is that it's universal, and Carrie represents the most anxious among us who walk that fine line between wanting to stay safe and comfortable, and risking comfort to find something even better.

On the other hand, Can't Resist a Cowboy suffers, in its earliest chapters, from a great deal of back story, delivered in "telling" versus "showing" style. That kind of information delivered dryly and in so short a time leads to a far slower pace than most stories warrant, especially toward the beginning when readers expect the pace to be quick and forward-moving (back story stops that forward motion) to keep them entertained and engaged.

That aside, this sexy-sweet romance novel is an enjoyable read, most of all for the depths of character explored therein.

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Author: Elizabeth Otto
Title: Can't Resist a Cowboy
Publisher: Entangled Publishing (Indulgence)
ISBN: 978-1-63375-202-3
Purchase here:

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this work from the publisher via Net Galley in exchange for an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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