Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Kiss Me by Susan Mallery

Title:  Kiss Me
Series:  Fool's Gold #17
Author:  Susan Mallery
Publication Date:  June 30/15 by HQN Books
Length:  384pgs
Genre:  contemporary romance
Shelf:  Netgalley
Rating: ★★★★★

Back Cover Blurb:
New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery creates the small-town destination for romance in charming Fool's Gold, California—where a loner cowboy finds the one woman who can capture his heart...

After Phoebe Kitzke's kind heart gets her suspended from her job in LA, she swears off doing favors—until her best friend begs for help on the family ranch in Fool's Gold. Unfortunately, sexy cowboy Zane Nicholson isn't exactly thrilled by the city girl's arrival.

Thanks to his brother's latest scheme, Zane has been roped into taking tourists on a cattle drive. What Phoebe knows about ranching wouldn't fill his hat, but her laughter is so captivating that even his animals fall for her. One slip of his legendary control leads to a passionate kiss, but she's exactly the kind of woman a single-minded loner needs to avoid.

In his arms, Phoebe discovers she's a country girl at heart. Yet no matter how much the small town feels like home, she can't stay unless Zane loves her, too…but is this cowboy interested in forever?

My Review:

What a story! Mallery engages readers on multiple fronts, allowing them to experience real life for these residents of Fool’s Gold. Self-discovery & familial responsibility vie with budding relationships and some real adventure. Everything was so vivid. I could just as easily picture being on the cattle drive as I could sitting on the ranch house. Those of us following the series have been IN Fool’s Gold many times before, but coming into the town, seeing the approach from fresh eyes with Phoebe was breathtaking. It gives a new and much larger perspective to the town, while also putting it all in context. Not to mention the absolutely fantastic storyline. The intensity of this story was brewing throughout, only to reach a crescendo at the end. I was held wrapt.

*SQUEE* Fool’s Gold’s resident brooding cowboy revealed! He’s that hero that grabs your heart from every direction. The rough and tumble cowboy with more responsibilities than he can count, with a soft, hidden side. Sure I felt for Phoebe & Chase, but Zane absolutely broke my heart. Pheobe’s wide open heart was a fantastic counterpoint. Readers fall in love with her for a completely different reason. Her bubbly, accepting nature & her need to talk to everyone & everything had me giggling more than once. Oh, and Zane and Phoebe’s 1st kiss was perfectly priceless. As usual, Eddie and Gladys had me rolling on the floor laughing. I love these septuagenarians. They’re comic relief at its finest, and some genuinely loveable people underneath it all. The foster child aspect was eye opening. I love how Mallery worked it in and how it all turned out. And I can’t finish here without mentioning Manny, the unsung hero of the story. I can’t say too much without ruining it for readers, but just watch out for him & ask him advice should you have any personal problems at hand.

Mallery has a way with words, that’s for sure. She’s one of those rare authors who rarely misses the mark, creating a world for readers to escape into for a while, telling a story about real people, living real lives, in a way that makes you want to be there alongside them.

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