A Town Called Valentine - Valentine Valley series, Book 1
By Dorine Linnen
Jan 18, 2012 - 5:42:49 PM

Emily Murphy stops at a tavern intending to eat and be on her way.  Nate Thalberg, one tall, long drink of water who Emily meets at the tavern, entices her into a game of pool and more than conversation when she loses their bet.  Normally not so bold, Emily surprises herself when she gives Nate his reward of a kiss, on top of a pool table no less.  Things get rather heated in that back room until Emily comes to her senses and runs out.

Emily has arrived in Valentine Valley in Colorado to sell the property she inherited from her mother when she passed away.  Emily hopes the sale will finance her college degree at Berkeley.  Recently divorced, she needs a fresh start and college will give her a chance to find herself.  Emily's ex-husband did enough damage to her self-confidence to last a lifetime so any move forward will be positive after what she's been through.


Nate has run his family's ranch efficiently as well as investing wisely.  He's not the settling type so the thought of a fling with Emily is more than intriguing.  It's how most of his relationships have gone...short-lived and emotionally withdrawn, so no one gets hurt.  But everything about Emily turns on his helpful buttons, and he can't stop himself from becoming more involved in her life than he expected.  Not that Emily necessarily wants his help because she's quite determined to make it on her own.


From the very first pages, I felt the sizzle between Emily and Nate, laced with a good sense of humor, flirty one-liners plus a little push and pull, these two are completely irresistible to any romantic.  That includes Nate's grandmother and her lady friends, who take Emily into their boarding house and hearts, when she finds herself without a place to stay.  These ladies put a capital M in meddling and match-making!  But that could describe the rest of the town too, because everyone is in everybody's business and Nate, well, he's the target where Emily's concerned.  Very funny situations are layered amongst the emotion throughout the book and the best part is watching Nate try so very hard not to fall in love with Emily.


A TOWN CALLED VALENTINE by Emma Cane has great laugh-out-loud moments, a ton of charm and smokin' hot cowboys living close to an adorable small town so well-suited for love that resistance is futile.  I lost count of how many times I smiled – this novel is really irresistible from a pure charm perspective and the entertaining characters.  From the interactions between the perfect leading couple, to the eccentric old ladies who rule the preservation committee, to good friends keeping their besties grounded with their no-nonsense advice and teasing, you can't help but love this novel.  It's also layered with some alluring cowboys in need of a good woman — what's not to adore?


The ending leaves you wondering who will be matched up next in this town of romance.  I can think of several I'd love to see fall hard, including Nate's sister, Brooke, or his brother, Josh — both of them seem like they'd be hard to catch, but so much fun to witness the chase.  When a book this enjoyable is Emma Cane's debut, it's inevitable that you'll be craving her next novel of love in the VALENTINE VALLEY series.  Definitely a novel to be read more than once, A TOWN CALLED VALENTINE is pure pleasure.

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