HOME ON THE RANGE
Can the brother left behind and a woman without hope work together for the good of two precious children?
Nick Stafford stayed in central Washington, working his family's large ranch after his brothers left to pursue other passions -- but his toughest job is being a single dad. As a child he watched his father fail at marriage and parenting, so Nick was determined to show him up. He'd be a better husband, father, and ranch manager than Sam Stafford ever was. Despite that commitment, three years after Nick's wife left him, he has a daughter in trouble at school and both of his girls are facing issues that force him to rethink his stubborn plans.
For Dr. Elsa Andreas, life fell apart when tragedy caused her to abandon her family therapy practice and retreat to the backwoods of Gray's Glen. Her school principal sister believes Elsa can guide the Stafford girls and that working with kids will draw Elsa out of her protective bubble.
Summer on the Double S teems with life and adventure. Amid the bounty of God and land, will Nick and Elsa find the courage to build futures based on faith rather than fear?
First off -- let's take a moment to savor that cover. Doesn't it make your heart all melty and turn your knees so wobbly it feels like your bones have been replaced by cooked spaghetti? Insert blissful sigh here. And the book delivers exactly what that beguiling cover promises.
Second -- I want to live in a hobbit house in the woods. Yes, that's my takeaway from reading this book. Not the only one...but important nonetheless.
Herne excels at reminding us of what matters most. Life is messy but God will see you through...if you let Him. That's a tough lesson to remember in the midst of family drama. Nick is barely hanging on, trying to figure out how things got so gnarled up. I can tell you -- Stafford male pride. But really -- what kind of cowboy hero isn't all prickly proud and of the "I can do it myself" mentality? And isn't that why we love them so much? And want to bop them over the head until some sense rattles through their brains?
Elsa is an intriguing mix of tough vulnerability. I love the inner strength that dictates her healing on her terms. And the way she handles Nick and his girls is sheer brilliance. She's unflappable, though not immune to the guy who is "a twelve on a 'smokin' hot cowboy' one-to-ten rating system." (p.9) Their romance is delectably slow and halting. There's plenty of complications and two sweet girls to protect after all.
And, oh mercy, the angst! I had to read with one eye closed as I braced myself for one particular situation. I kept thinking, "Ruthy wouldn't do that to her readers, would she?" Of course she did! But that's life, isn't it? Full of twists and turns that sometimes include desperate circumstances.
Fans of the first book, Back in the Saddle, will be thrilled to meet up again with Colt and Angelina. There's nothing like a teasing brother who also has your back. And the Double S ranch is the perfect backdrop of an epic family saga.
Real and raw and peppered with grit. The kind of story that can make a difference if you let it.
My thanks to the author for gifting me with a copy of this book.
If you would like an opportunity to win a copy of Home on the Range please leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you post a comment and add your email address, please use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in the address to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email please remember to put the title in the subject line so that it's easy for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday September 25 2016. Offer open to international readers. Good luck!