Title: Big Sky River by Linda Lael Miller
Parable Series Book Three
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 318 pages
Book Rating: B+
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
Sheriff Boone Taylor has his job, friends, a run-down but decent ranch, two faithful dogs and a good horse. He doesn’t want romance—the widowed Montanan has loved and lost enough for a lifetime. But when a city woman buys the spread next door, Boone’s peace and quiet are in serious jeopardy.
With a marriage and a career painfully behind her, Tara Kendall is determined to start over in Parable. Reinventing herself and living a girlhood dream is worth the hard work. Sure, she might need help from her handsome, wary neighbor. But life along Big Sky River is full of surprises…like falling for a cowboy-lawman who just might start to believe in second chances.
More than a love story, Big Sky River is an incredibly heartwarming story of healing from a devastating loss and finding love where it is least expected. This third installment in Linda Lael Miller’s delightfully charming Parable series brings the long awaited romance of Sheriff Boone Taylor and his city slicker neighbor Tara Kendall.
Boone Taylor stole my heart as soon as we were introduced to the heartbroken lawman in Big Sky Country. Boone has been stuck in an endless cycle of grief since his wife’s death a few years earlier. While he goes through the motions, he cannot quite seem to move on despite the encouragement of his longtime friends Hutch Carmody and Slade Barlow. His sister is raising his young sons, Griffin and Fletcher and while they come for the occasional visit with him, Boone is not ready to be a full time dad. But when Boone’s brother-in-law suffers an accident and his sister has her hands full with her own family, it is time for Griffin and Fletcher to move home with their dad.
In the wake of her painful divorce, Tara Kendall leaves New York and purchases the ranch next door to Boone. Tara and Boone have butted heads a time or two over his dilapidated and run down property, but for the most part, they live a peaceful co-existence. Tara has settled into her life as chicken farmer and she has formed a tight friendship with Kendra Carmody, Joslyn Barlow and newcomer Casey Elder. While she is definitely over her ex, Tara still feels the loss of her stepdaughters Elle and Erin. When her ex-husband proposes she take the girls for the summer, she jumps at the chance to renew her relationship with the daughters of her heart and welcomes them with open arms.
Despite their age differences, the four kids enjoy spending time with one another and Tara and Boone’s paths begin to cross on a fairly frequent basis with the arrival the children. Boone’s job as sheriff brings after hours crises and Tara lends a neighborly hand when Boone needs it. Boone and Tara quickly begin to see one another in a whole new light, and as their perspectives evolve, so does their relationship. Their romance is slow growing, understated and mostly free of conflict. There are a few issues that do arise between them but they are resolved fairly quickly.
Linda Lael Miller’s characters are always refreshingly down to earth, compassionate, and easy to like. They are not larger than life, but instead they are everyday average people living ordinary lives. They are dealing with realistic problems and they make mistakes.
With Big Sky River, Linda Lael Miller delivers an emotionally satisfying and incredibly poignant novel. What I found most enjoyable about Boone and Tara’s story is their slow but steady progress as they triumph over their respective pasts. Love sneaks up on them when neither of them is looking and that just makes their romance that much sweeter. An absolutely wonderful addition to the Parable series that fans are sure to love.
Read my reviews of the other books in the Parable series HERE.