Title: Lone Heart Pass by Jodi Thomas
Ransom Canyon Series Book Three
Publisher: HQN Books
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Where family bonds are made and broken, and where young love sparks as old flames grow dim, Ransom Canyon is ready to welcome—and shelter—those who need it
With a career and a relationship in ruins, Jubilee Hamilton is left reeling from a fast fall to the bottom. The run-down Texas farm she’s inherited is a far cry from the second chance she hoped for, but it and the abrasive foreman she’s forced to hire are all she’s got.
Every time Charley Collins has let a woman get close, he’s been burned. So Lone Heart ranch and the contrary woman who owns it are merely a means to an end, until Jubilee tempts him to take another risk—to stop resisting the attraction drawing them together despite all his hard-learned logic.
Desperation is all young Thatcher Jones knows. And when he finds himself mixed up in a murder investigation, his only protection is the shelter of a man and woman who—just like him—need someone to trust.
Lone Heart Pass by Jodi Thomas is a heartwarming novel of new beginnings and second chances. This third installment in the Ransom Canyon features multiple story arcs which include a beautiful romance and a perplexing mystery. Old and new fans will be delighted to meet new characters while at the same catching up with a few favorites from previous novels.
After her latest relationship and her career fall apart, Jubilee Hamilton is more than ready for a change of scenery and a new plan for her future. Discovering her beloved great-grandfather recently passed away and left her his Texas ranch, she eagerly plans her move to Ransom Canyon. With little knowledge about ranching, Jubilee quickly hires Charley Collins as her foreman and despite the occasional disagreement, they soon settle into an easy working relationship and a surprising friendship. Neither Jubilee or Charley are looking for romance, but when love sneaks in when neither are looking, will their emotional baggage prevent them from embracing their chance for happily ever after?
As a campaign manager, Jubilee works long hours and as a result, her relationships take a back seat to her career. With her life in tatters, she returns home hoping to repair her strained relationship with her family but she makes little headway. Determined to get the Lone Heart Ranch up and running, she enthusiastically begins the arduous task of learning the skills she needs to succeed as a rancher. Confident that Charley knows what he is doing, Jubilee is all in as they begin rebuilding the herd and embark on a few side ventures to support the fledgling business.
A single father devoted to his five year daughter Lillie, Charley is barely scraping by financially as he tries to save for a ranch of his own. No stranger to hard work, he is working multiple jobs when Jubilee hires him to work for her. He is more than thrilled with their arrangement since he will be making more money, but most important, he will be working on a ranch again. Charley has a bit of a checkered past and he has not always made the best decisions but he is a caring man with a good heart.
Young Thatcher Jones meets Jubilee and Charley while he is helping Sheriff Dan Brigman investigate a murder close to Jubilee’s ranch. Thatcher is savvy and street smart due to his somewhat unconventional childhood and his connections make him useful during the investigation. He begins helping out on the ranch as well and Charley takes him under his wing when he discovers the truth about Thatcher’s home life.
Lauren Brigman returns to Crossroads during a college break and now on the brink of graduation, she is unsure what comes next for her. Reuniting with old friend Tim O’Grady, she realizes he is a little troubled, so she convinces her father to hire him to help with the murder investigation. As the two of them renew their friendship, Lauren finds her thoughts turning to Lucas Reyes, the man she has loved since they were teenagers. She and Lucas have not been in contact for quite some time, so she is shocked to run into him in town. After one final encounter and more excuses from Lucas about the timing not being right, Lauren gives up hope on a future with him.
Lone Heart Pass by Jodi Thomas is an engaging romance with a charming cast of appealing characters. The various story arcs overlap and each of the storylines are well-developed and interesting. The introduction of new characters keeps the Ransom Canyon series fresh while the inclusion of characters from previous installments provides a homey, comfortable feel to the story. This heartfelt novel can be read as a standalone, but I highly recommend the entire series.