3 out of 4 stars
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Jo Ann Bender brings every woman’s fantasy cowboy to life in her novel called Casanova Cowboy. She weaves an engaging tale of how life in Rusty Springs, a small town in Montana, quickly gets interesting when a new young and handsome man moves into the neighborhood. If you love countryside stories, then you need to get this one.
At the beginning of the story, we are introduced to the town’s official grapevine; the Stitch ‘N Bitchers. This is a gathering of some towns’ women, both single and married, who come together regularly to share the most recent news in Rusty Springs. Presently, the hot gist is about the dashing eligible cowboy coming to work on the Olivers’ ranch. The youngest of the women, high spirited Stormy Swift, is excited by this news and hopes to land a great catch in this new town addition.
Lance Turbyfill has never lacked female attention. He’s a Vietnam War veteran with both physical and emotional scars, but he goes through life with a bubbly spirit and is always glad to be of help; in any capacity. His charm and charisma are the reason why so many women get attracted to him, and he returns the favor to as many as he can. Clair, who lives in Winnemucca with her disabled husband Mark, describes the period after he left Winnemucca as one of the darkest periods in her life. Joy Ann Oliver, his employer’s wife also finds herself drawn to him. Will he finally settle in Montana or will he continue on his journey through life, leaving a trail of broken hearts in his wake?
This story highlights one of my favorite guiding principles: “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving.” The hero, Lance, derives happiness from helping people in need, and from being a useful member of the community. Despite the fact that he is battling with post-traumatic stress from his time at war, he is a ray of sunshine to many lives, including that of bad-tempered Mark. He strongly believes that helping people is the right thing to do. The world as we know it would be in a terrible place without people like that.
The author tells a refreshing tale packed with everything country. Beer, camaraderie, small shops, local urchins, jungle justice, horses, bushfires, community gatherings, the occasional rattlesnake, and the local beau. She serves a healthy-sized helping of romance with a pinch of sex; in a nice, flavourful combination. This is one story you will want to get to the bottom of. The tale is mildly suspenseful; you can almost guess what happens next if you think hard enough. You will find your guesses were wrong a few times, though.
I am incapable of saying much about the formatting. This is because the book I received looked more like a manuscript still being edited. Cover pages, introductory pages, and publishers’ notes were all missing. There was an awkwardly placed box containing a note at the beginning of the first chapter. As such, I can only rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. I am confident the finished book will earn a perfect rating.
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