Title: Cowboy Take Me Away by Jane Graves
Rainbow Valley Series Book one
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 464 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
FIRST LOVE BURNS HOTTER
Rainbow Valley, Texas, has always been a refuge for animals, and Shannon North, director of the local shelter, intends to keep it that way. But with donations drying up and more pets in need of a loving home than ever before, Shannon’s beginning to fear she’s not the savior the shelter needs. When a tall, dark, and handsome cowboy from her past comes to the rescue, she knows that accepting his help may come with a high price: her heart.
THE SECOND TIME AROUND
Bad boy Luke Dawson shook the dust from this little town off his boots years ago. He walked away from everything . . . except the memory of the one night of passion he shared with Shannon. Now, a few wins away from becoming the world bull-riding champion, Luke’s headed for fame and fortune. But then a crisis calls him back to Rainbow Valley, and Luke is reunited with the good girl who stole-and broke-his heart. As their rekindled relationship deepens into desire, old secrets resurface, and Luke must choose between the future he’s always dreamed of and the only woman he’s ever loved.
If you are a fan of stories with adorable animals, charming characters and a small town setting, you won’t want to miss Cowboy Take Me Away. This heartwarming first installment in Jane Graves’ Rainbow Valley series is a wonderful second chance at love romance.
As teenagers, good girl Shannon North and bad boy Luke Dawson formed an unlikely friendship that culminated in one incredibly passionate encounter. After a misunderstanding, Luke takes off and does not return to Rainbow Valley for eleven years. His return will bring Luke and Shannon back together but will their complicated past keep them apart?
On the surface, Shannon seems to have a perfect life. Her family is wealthy but they have high expectations that she often finds difficult to live up to. Appearances mean everything to her demanding mother and for Shannon, that means having a prestigious career and marrying the right man. Much to her mother’s disappointment, Shannon leaves her lucrative job and moves back to Rainbow Valley to run the local animal shelter. Shannon is content to casually date a man that satisfies her mother’s exacting qualifications. That is until Luke comes back into her life and reawakens her long dormant desire for the sexy cowboy.
Growing up, Luke was the quintessential bad boy and his wild reputation haunts him when he returns to Rainbow Valley. The son the town drunk, Luke’s survived his abusive childhood and he is on the verge of achieving his goal of becoming a champion bull rider. His homecoming revives memories better left buried, but his return provides him the opportunity to resolve some of the issues from his past. Luke finds an unexpected peace working with Shannon and even though they both know there is no future for them, they cannot resist the passion that simmers between them.
There is no shortage of conflict for Luke and Shannon as they take their relationship from friends to lovers. One of their biggest problems plaguing them is lack of communication. It takes most of the novel for them to bring up their past relationship. They are also quick to make assumptions about each other. Shannon finds it impossible to stand up to her judgmental mother and Luke has a knee jerk reaction to run away from trouble.
Despite the seemingly insurmountable obstacles in their way, Luke and Shannon really do work as a couple. They have an easy friendship and they bring out the best in each other. Their romance is sweet and passionate and I was really rooting for them to find a way to make their relationship work.
While Cowboy Take Me Away is a well-written story, some of the information about bull riding is inaccurate. Anyone who follows the sport is going to catch the mistakes as easily as I did. My copy of the book is an advanced reader copy, so I am hoping the errors were corrected for the final edition.
If you are looking for a book that has a meaningful and realistic plot then you will enjoy Cowboy Take Me Away. It is an emotional yet angst free romance with two incredibly likeable protagonists. The supporting cast of characters is excellently developed and I am looking forward to reading their stories in future installments of Jane Graves’ Rainbow Valley series.