A compelling story with beautiful horses, a dash of wit, flawed but likeable characters, and wave upon wave of sexual tension, should make this debut novel a fun book for younger adult or "new" adult readers. I enjoyed reading how the heroine healed a broken heart by rekindling her love of horses. I also liked how she learned to face her fears head-on, tried to understand horses better, and reached a life-changing decision by listening not only to her heart and mentors, but also her brain. What I didn't like was the character's self-centered immaturity, and endless perception of male characters as sex objects. Finally, speaking as a horse showgirl myself, I found the book's depictions of Western show horsemanship sketchy. It's hard to write western romance well, with accuracy regarding horses. But I believe Carly Kade is on her way!
Carly Kade is another author that I so happily found through Instagram. She is a fellow equestrian and when I saw that she wrote a horse book I knew I wanted to read it. Horses and swoon worthy cowboys? Um, yes please! The main character and I also have the same name just different spellings, I'd say that me being introduced to this book was fate!
In The Reins takes us on a ride with Devon Brooke, a journalist unhappy living the city life. She wants to start anew and resort back to her country roots. Doing so means welcoming horses back into her life, after searching the web high and low for the perfect companion she finally find a young, green paint mare. As soon as she laid her eyes upon her, Devon knew it was fate calling to her. She finds a quiet secluded barn called Green Briar that's privately owned and only has a few individuals. She deems it the perfect place to begin training and bonding with her new mare, Faith.
Upon arrival, Devon is told to mind her p's and q's but she quickly befriends Sophia, the owner of Green Briar as well as JD one of the barn hands. Then there is McKennon whom seems to be mysteriously untouchable and off limits but she see's how well he does with his horses so it wouldn't hurt to acquire some training tips, would it? Devon spends a lot of time with JD but McKennon always seems to be coming to her rescue. After an accident with her and Faith, Devon begins spending more and more time with McKennon and feelings begin to develop. But every time they get close, McKennon pulls away. Devon wants to badly to get to know him and uncover the mysteries that he guards close to his heart [...]
To read the rest of my review check it out on my blog! [...]
After some 'heavy' non-fiction reading, I was looking for a fun, 'guilty pleasure' read. I saw this book, in which horses play a central part. Since I'm a horse person, I figured it'd be a good book to take to the beach with me. So much for going in the water - I stayed on the beach and read all weekend.
Devon Brooke is a woman who realizes, before it's too late, that the man she's engaged to isn't the man she should marry. She also realizes that city life just isn't for her. Remembering the horse she had when she was young, and how happy that animal made her, Devon decides to leave the life she's built and head south, into the country. Eventually winding up at a beautiful farm, Green Briar, and finding/buying a young Paint prospect, Faith, Devon is finally happy. That is, until she meets McKennon Kelly. McKennon is a hunk-a-hunk gor-gee-ous cowboy that is quiet and stays pretty much to himself. Both Sophia, the owner of Green Briar, and JD (Devon's new best friend), warn Devon to stay away from McKennon. There are secrets that nobody will tell Devon and even with the warnings, she just can't help falling for the handsome, mysterious cowboy.
When McKennon offers to help Devon train Faith, sparks start to fly - at least for Devon. She has trouble reading her new trainer, and whether he has feelings for her. Does McKennon share Devon's feelings, does he just want to be her trainer, and why does he disappear for weeks on end? Just what is going on with him?
It took just a few pages to draw me into this story and Devon's eventual fate kept me reading. Like Devon, I needed to learn what McKennon's big secret was. The writing was descriptive, the dialog relatable and realistic and the horse action was spot on. There's a sequel preview at the back of the book - and I can't wait to learn what happens to Devon and McKennon.