After arriving at Bridleton and reassuring herself that her loved ones are okay Andrea’s panic abates somewhat but then Nannette drops the bomb that Bridleton is in financial trouble and if it’s not back in the black by the end of summer she’s turning over controlling interest to the ranch manager Noah. The very idea of Bridleton no longer being a Bartell property sends a stab of pain into Andrea’s very heart and she assumes that Noah has manipulated the situation to suit himself. She once accused Noah of using her and her now dead sister, Caroline, to get his hands on Bridleton – it looks like he’s just changed his tactics, something she’s not willing to permit to continue.
Noah Courtland loves Bridleton and has always wanted to have a financial stake in the property but despite Andrea’s beliefs he hasn’t manipulated Nannette and certainly never used Andrea or Caroline. Even after five years away Andrea’s not ready to listen to reason but Noah’s hopeful that the reality of her aunt’s decision will entice Andrea to stay on Bridleton and in his company so that she can see for herself that he truly isn’t the bad guy she’s made him out to be.
Andrea and Noah were once very much in love and even planning a ‘happily-ever-after’ but her sister Caroline’s sudden death and misunderstandings about Noah’s part in the accident drove them apart. Now with a determination to keep Bridleton in the Bartell family Andrea trades in designer clothing for jeans and boots and works side by side with Noah. In doing so she’s forced to admit that she never stopped loving Noah, but will she be able to get past all those years of anger and hurt she’s allowed to fester in her heart?
Becky Barker’s BRIDLETON incites an emotional reaction in readers practically right from the first page. As you can imagine there’s a great deal of attachment to this particular land but it’s the tension between Andrea and Noah that really brings this story to life. There’s a wealth of misunderstandings between them which has never been addressed and only festered over time so their interactions are charged with emotion and passion. What I loved about this story is how Ms. Barker includes Andrea’s siblings and how Andrea’s decision to save Bridleton affects her modeling career. One of my favorite characters in this story has to be Nannette. She’s such a strong woman and doesn’t back down from any challenge and medical problems are forcing her to make tough decisions – ones that ultimately bring the Bartell siblings home. Confusion, anger, hurt, lust, love and possessiveness merge to make BRIDELTON a heart touching story you won’t want to miss.