Brendan Waddell needs a place to recuperate. Lauren Everman needs a place to hide. It's going to be an unexpectedly romantic Christmas at Bluebird Ranch. Brendan Waddell has always considered Bluebird Ranch a little piece of heaven: an idyllic ranch that pairs abused children with abused horses, run by one of his old Marine buddies. Now, recovering from an on-the-job injury, Brendan thinks the ranch is the perfect place to spend Christmas healing up. When Lauren Everman was a 17-year-old foster kid, Bluebird Ranch was the safest place she knew. Now it's the perfect hideout for a woman on the run. As the witness to a murder, Lauren needs somewhere to lie low, and her skill with horses means she'll be able to lend a hand with the troubled kids at Bluebird - without answering too many questions. Lauren's rich hair, high cheekbones, and dark eyes immediately get Brendan's attention - but so does her secretive behavior. This Special Ops/Intel man knows a woman on the run when he sees one, and he's not about to let her put Bluebird Ranch at risk. As Brendan and Lauren get to know each other, their suspicions evaporate and romance starts to sizzle. But this would-be couple has more to worry about than each other - there's a killer on the loose who wants Lauren kept quiet.
©2014 Thomas Nelson (P)2014 Oasis Audio
Don’t do it. That’s my advice if you’re a sucker for Christmas-themed books filled with horses , romance and mystery. I made the grave mistake of listening to this turkey on audio, and it was AWFUL. The narrator was just fine up until she switched into her little kid voice. She sounded like that creepy psychic woman from Poltergeist. I’m telling you, it was ridiculously bad. And then there’s the plot…or lack there of. It’s set in Texas, but it might as well have been anywhere USA. When you set a book in Texas, you need to have a good grasp on the culture, the small town neuroticisms, the twang. Perhaps it would have done her some good to pick up a title by Larry McMurty. Aside from ignoring all things Texan, she didn’t bother puzzling together a murder mystery. She threw out a couple of clues here and there, but it’s pretty easy to identify the killer early on. The romance (or as my fellow bloggers call it “insta-love”) was way too saccharine sweet. As for the leading lady, she fell flat as a pancake right from the get-go. All in all, this story is a total waste of time. I’ve seen more substance in a Lifetime movie starring Tori Spelling.
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