Title: The Wrangler by Lindsay McKenna
Jackson Hole, Wyoming Series Book 5
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
CAN A CITY BOY MAKE GOOD IN THE WILD WEST?
After Wall Street collapses, investment banker Griff McPherson trades in his suits and ties for Stetsons and cowboy boots. He returns to the Wyoming ranch he co-owns with his brother, but it’s not exactly a happy homecoming. So when the FBI recruits Griff to help investigate a drug-smuggling ring in Jackson Hole, threatening the safety of his family and friends, he goes undercover as a wrangler on another ranch.
Air Force Lieutenant Val Hunter has just inherited the Hunter Bar H ranch and she needs all the help she can get. Griff McPherson is easy on the eyes, and a tough wrangler to boot, but Val’s instincts tell her Griff is hiding something… When danger ignites their sparks into flames, will Val see past Griff’s betrayal to the true cowboy that lies beneath?
The Wrangler by Lindsay McKenna is a heartfelt family-based romance that is very sweet and quite engaging. It is a wonderful story of love, redemption, and the importance of family.
Val Hunter is kind-hearted and will do anything for her grandmother, Gus. She gives up her military career to move back to the family ranch when Gus asks for her help. She is a strong woman whose abusive past leaves her wary of men. With great reluctance, she agrees with Gus’s decision to hire Griff McPherson. While attracted to Griff, Val maintains a physical and emotional distance from him.
A former Wall Street banker who lost everything when the economy collapsed, Griff is a quiet man whose feelings run deep. He accepts responsibility for his past mistakes and he takes the necessary steps to end the estrangement between he and his brother Slade. Griff is insightful, and he slowly and carefully gains Val’s trust.
Gus may be in her eighties, but she is full of vim and vinegar. She may be slowing down physically, but mentally she is sharp as a tack. She is blunt and forthright and does not stand for any nonsense. From anyone. Fiercely loyal and protective, she is determined to get the Bar H back on its feet.
Val and Griff slowly form a friendship that is based on mutual respect. Val does not trust easily, but Griff’s patience and understanding of her abusive past eventually wins her over. Their romance is unhurried and grows naturally over the course of the book.
The story arc with the villainous Curt Downing continues. Curt is still wreaking havoc on the inhabitants of Jackson Hole and more details of his treachery are revealed. This part of the storyline is well-written and plays a pivotal role in Val and Griff’s relationship. Curt is a bit of a cliché with no redeeming qualities but it will be interesting to see what evil deeds Ms. McKenna plans for him in future books of the series.
The Wrangler by Lindsay McKenna is a wonderful romance that is full of traditional family values. Fans of contemporary Western novels will enjoy this compelling and heartwarming love story.
Read my review of the previous book in this series, The Last Cowboy, HERE.