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Three time world-champion barrel racer Tanna Barker is at loose ends. Since her mother’s death and the riding accident which left her petrified of horses and effectively ended her rodeo career she doesn’t know what to do with herself. Tanna’s a hell-raiser and doesn’t bother to censor her own speech but she’s discomfited by her own fears and with her mother gone doesn’t even have a home to return to where she can lick her wounds in private. Fortunately she has great friends in Muddy Gap who not only offer her a place to stay but a job as well while she sorts herself out.
Rather than impose on her friends in Muddy Gap Tanna opts to check herself into a dive motel in Rawlings within stumbling blocks of a bar. It’s her one last chance to be shamelessly wild for a while. Booze and a never ending line up of wanna-be cowboys seems to be the name of the game and Tanna loves shocking them into backing down in their pursuit of her – until one man in particular dares to call her on her inventive scare tactics and entices her to concentrate all her reckless desires on him.
Large animal veterinarian August Fletcher takes his job very seriously. He understands that the livelihoods of his customers depend on the wellbeing of their animals which is just one of the reasons why he is constantly on the road from one farm to another and always on call. Marriage and family are just a pipe dream since he knows no woman is going to want to put up with his sort of work schedule. He doesn’t even date seriously; instead, he seeks one night stands or short term relationships based on nothing more than sexual satisfaction – until he encounters Tanna.
TURN AND BURN had me laughing out loud within just the first couple pages and the story just takes on a life of its own from there. Tanna and August might have started off as nothing more than a one night stand but it’s obvious that he wants more and the attraction is mutual on Tanna’s end but she has issues that she needs to overcome before she can consider anything serious with anyone. Tanna’s lack of a censor button is so much fun. You really just never know what’s going to come out of her mouth, at the same time her debilitating fear of horses is heartbreaking since it’s obvious she loved the rodeo and barrel racing. August won me over with his compassionate nature – whether it’s animals or people he’s a wonderful man who deserves a break and a good woman. Laughter, tears, long heartfelt sighs, and blinding hurt are all a part of life and Ms. James does a brilliant job incorporating them all into this heartfelt story.
TURN AND BURN is the fifth title in the BLACKTOP COWBOYS series – and I certainly hope to get the opportunity to revisit these characters as well as the others in future releases.
Other titles in the series are:
CORRALLED – released August 2010
SADDLED AND SPURRED – released March 2011
WRANGLED AND TANGLED – released November 2011
ONE NIGHT RODEO – released August 2012
This book was reviewed using a digital galley via NetGalley. It’s free for professional readers! Check it out: www.netgalley.com
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