The Rodeo Rider
Harlequin American, Aug 2009, $4.99
She loved to ride horses when she was a child. That is until the accident when she was twelve left her temporarily in a coma. Jules Vandeveer has kept her distance from horses ever since she regained consciousness, preferring the big city to ranch country.
However, the urban based lawyer has no choice but to enter Oklahoma rodeo country as her best friend Beth Anders is getting married and expects her to attend the ceremony. Jules figures she can deal with anything for a month like she did when they first met at the hospital when Beth had poison oak and she had the injuries. She had not counted on rodeo bronco rider Tanner O'Brien and his troubled fourteen years old nephew Shawn who he is raising. Unable to stay out of the uncle and his ward’s issues, Jules becomes involved when she intercedes while they argue in a tavern’s parking lot. Tanner admires her guts when it comes to teens, but wonders why he is attracted to a person who disdains his vocation.
Though none of the three lead characters are developed deep enough to fully understand their fears, fans of contemporary romances will enjoy the well written THE RODEO RIDER. The story line is fun to follow due to the range wars between Jules and Tanner over how to deal with Shawn, bronco and horse riding, and love; as both grasp in their respective gut the desperation of caring and fearing for someone else.