Title: Sweet on You by Laura Drake
Sweet On a Cowboy Series Book Three
Publisher:Hachette Book Group/Grand Central Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
A Love as Bold as a Texas Sunset . . .
Ex-army medic Katya Smith has always healed other people’s pain. Now she has to deal with her own. Taking a job as an athletic trainer on the Pro Bull Riding circuit seems like the perfect escape from her grief-except Katya doesn’t know anything about bulls, and even less about the tough men who ride them. She doesn’t expect to fall for the sport, or for one tantalizing cowboy who tumbles her defenses.
For rodeo champion Cam Cahill, fifteen years of bucking bulls have taken their toll on his body. Before he retires, he wants a final chance at the world title-and he doesn’t need some New Age gypsy telling him how to do his job. But when the stunning trainer with the magical hands repairs more than his worn muscles, everything changes. Soon Cam finds himself trying to persuade Katya to forgive her past so she can build a future . . . with him.
Sweet on You, the third installment in Laura Drake’s divine Sweet on a Cowboy series, is wonderful novel about healing, new beginnings and of course, love. The professional bull riding circuit is the perfect setting for this heartwarming romance between an aging bull rider and an emotionally wounded Army medic as they both face uncertain futures.
Katya Smith finds herself in unfamiliar territory when she takes a job with the sports medicine team for the Professional Bull Riders (PBR). Katya might not understand the sport, lingo or lifestyle, but she does recognize a spoiled athlete when she sees one, and PBR rider Cam Cahill certainly appears to be no different from the other jocks she has worked with in the past. Katya does not make the best first impression on Cam either but since they have to work together week after week, they agree to put aside their animosity. Their mutual attraction leads to an unlikely romance, but will Katya’s plans for the future ruin their chance at happiness?
Katya is a warm, compassionate and caring woman and watching her struggle to overcome her PTSD is very heartrending. She is very loyal to the “family” she has created with her fellow soldiers and while this is understandable, it also causes a bit of tunnel vision when it comes to her future. In the beginning, she sees her job with the PBR as a means to an end, and she keeps both an emotional and physical distance from the cowboys on tour. It is not until Katya wants to learn more about the sport and the cowboy way of life that she takes a personal interest in the bull riders she is helping.
As a fifteen year veteran bull rider, Cam’s love of the sport has not diminished, but but his numerous injuries have begun to take a toll both in and out of the arena. Knowing this is most likely his last season, he has been trying to figure out what comes next, but so far, nothing he has considered really appeals to him. He spends a lot of time in sports medicine in an effort to stay healthy and he is surprised by his interest in Katya. Cam’s first few meetings with her are a bit rocky and although romance is the last thing on either of their minds, they begin dating. While they both agree that they are not interested in a serious or long lasting commitment, their feelings for another are anything but casual. But as both Katya and Cam soon discover, they are not exactly on the same page when it comes to their future.
One of the most appealing aspects of Sweet on You is how easily and vibrantly Laura Drake brings the world of Professional Bull Riding to life. Newcomers to the sport will have no difficulty understanding the grueling travel schedule or grasping how truly dangerous an eight second ride can be. She also provides incredible insight into what motivates the riders to participate in such an extreme sport and how reluctant they are to sit on the sidelines despite their injuries. The pulse-pounding excitement of attending live events leaps off the pages and perfectly illustrates why fans are drawn to the sport.
With Sweet on You, Laura Drake has once again written an emotionally compelling novel with complex and sympathetic characters. True to life issues such as PTSD and survivor’s guilt are handled with sensitivity and the healing process is realistically depicted. While Cam’s issues are less serious, they are believable and easy to relate to. The romance between Cam and Katya is sweet yet sexy and grows naturally over the course of the story. The ending is perfect; it is a little dramatic but very heartwarming.
Sweet on You is an absolutely delightful addition to the Sweet on a Cowboy series that old and new fans are going to love. It can be read as a standalone story, but I highly recommend this entire series to readers who enjoys contemporary Western romances.
Please click HERE for my reviews of the other books in the series.