Monday, September 18, 2017

Susan's Review of The Cowboy Who Got Away by Nancy Robards Thompson -Celebration, TX series

Hunky bull rider Jude Campbell seems to have the world by the proverbial horns. But when the world champion returns to Celebration for his high school reunion, he's confronted by the ghosts he'd worked so hard to forget. Not to mention the high school love who got away... Bridezilla wrangler Juliette Lowell is as gorgeous and genuine as she was as Jude's homecoming queen. And the spark between them burns as bright as ever. But Jules still smarts from Jude's betrayal years before. And as successful as he seems, Jude's struggling with the prospect of hanging up his spurs. But with his queen, Juliette, by his side, maybe this homecoming will take once and for all

Every inch of him needed her. Even if he hadn't been conscious of it before, he wanted to hold her like this, feel her just like this, from the moment he saw her standing there talking to herself in the middle of Lucy's barn. The desire had grown as they'd sat in the Redbird and reminisced and laughed like old friends and now it was so great it had rendered him half out of his mind.

Even so, he hadn't planned on seducing her--or has she seduced him? That was the thing about them. They tended to spontaneously combust when they were around each other. Sometimes it was difficult to discern where one of them stopped and the other began.

How had they gone so long without each other?

High school reunions bring up lots of memories and the 10-year reunion is often considered a milestone; as people are conscious of their marital, career and financial status. The Cowboy Who Got Away explores these themes as Juliette Lowell and Jude Campbell are given a second chance at love when Jude arrives in Celebration just in time for their 10th reunion.

Juliette has appeared in several of Nancy Robards Thompson’s Celebration books and I was thrilled to read her story. As a popular wedding consultant, she creates magical weddings for her clients. However, Juliette has dealt with one too many demanding bridezilla and is growing tired of travelling that her job entails. Jude Campbell overhears Juliette talking to herself in her office at the Campbell Wedding Barn after a client (bridezilla!!) meeting and asks about the situation. Juliette is surprised to see her high school boyfriend after ten years. Jude has left the bull riding circuit because he has suffered a concussion; he’s spending time at home and looking to rekindle his relationship with Juliette.

Nancy Robards Thompson perfectly balances the present attraction between Jude and Juliette with the couple’s need to sort through their past break up. As a reader, I could relate to Juliette. Her relationship with Jude meant everything to her and it took her a long time to get over him. Can she trust him? The author is spot on with the emotional poignant conversations between the couple. Jude opens up to Juliette about his relationship with his father, self-doubts and current career situation. Will he choose love or his career?

Several contemporary themes are woven in this tender, sexy story. Jude was very open about the concussions that he suffered while pursuing the bull riding championship. The concussion protocol is something all athletes should adhere to. Ms. Thompson did a fantastic job bringing this element into the storyline. Loved that Jude and Juliette danced to Blake Shelton’s Mine Would Be You at the reunion. The dance scene was superbly written and each one of the author’s words described the love that Jude and Juliette shared as well as the heartache they felt. Jude over hears that Juliette has been offered a job based in London; this leads to a huge misunderstanding between them. Can Jude and Juliette work through this situation?

I loved the conclusion of the novel—it’s full of love, understanding and a teensy piece of irony which I loved! And it works perfectly for this couple!

Reviewed By Susan Gorman

Book provided by the author.

National bestselling author Nancy Robards Thompson lives and writes in Florida, but her imagination transports her all over the world. She’s worked a myriad of jobs including television show stand-in; production and extras casting for movies; and several mind-numbing jobs in the fashion industry and public relations. She earned a degree in journalism only to realize reporting “just the facts” bored her silly. Much more content to report to her muse, Nancy has found Nirvana doing what she loves most – writing contemporary and historical romance and women’s fiction full-time. After hanging up her press pass, this two-time nominee for the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart struck gold in July 2002 when she won the award. Since then, she’s gone on to sell more than 30 books, which critics have deemed, “…funny, smart and observant.”

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