Montana Legacy by R.C. Ryan
Paperback: 304 pages
Available: February 23, 2010
Genre: Contemporary Romance (Western)
Book received from: Publisher
They’re the McCords…three rugged, sexy cowboy cousins who’ll inherit the family range–if they seek the treasure hidden on it. But even more precious are the women who can tame their wild hearts…
She was the one person who shook Jesse McCord’s quiet determination. She was the only one he ever let in, body and soul. Then suddenly Amy Parrish was gone and the oldest McCord cousin devoted his life to the family ranch. Now Amy is back, offering help to Jesse find the McCord gold. Yet Jesse’s not about to give her a second chance, and he hopes his pride will protect him from her irresistible charms. But under the wide prairie skies a dangerous, unseen enemy is fast closing in, threatening Amy and Jesse’s very lives and the promise of their …
Old Coot McCord spent his life searching for a fortune in gold rumored to be lost somewhere on the McCord Family’s 200,000 thousand acre ranch. When he died unexpectedly, his friends and family gather to mourn his death, including his grandsons Jesse, Wyatt and Zane. Old Coot wanted nothing more than for his grandson’s to reunite and mend old wounds, and for them to continue his lifelong search for the lost fortune. So, he has the last word on this matter by stating in his will that the estranged cousins would share in the fortune only if they remain at the ranch and continued the search.
Jesse McCord grew up on the ranch with Coot, while his two cousin’s moved away during childhood. He’s more than annoyed that the cousin’s he was once so close to have shown up after all these years of no contact and are moving in on his territory. He’s not so much concerned with the gold, but he’s hurt that Zane and Wyatt never bothered in all the years to come visit Coot before he died.
Amy Parrish was Jesse’s first and only true love. She is the daughter of Ottis Parish, Coot’s ranch neighbor with whom he carried on a life long feud. When Amy left right after graduation for college without so much as a good-bye, Jesse was heart broken and carried a torch for her for years. When she returns to her family home to care for her sick father old feelings are stirred to the surface but both are determined to keep an emotional distance from each other because of old wounds and heartbreak. Well, that’s the plan anyway. When Amy finds some old notes that were written by Coot in her father’s things she returns them to Jesse Amy and decides to join in the search for the gold. When strange things start happening to Amy and an attempt in made on her life, Jesse springs into action to protect the woman he has loved most of his life.
Montana Legacy is a second chances love story. Jesse and Amy and fell in love as teens against Amy’s father’s wishes and were torn apart before their love could blossom into a lasting relationship. When a second chance comes around they have to decide whether to take the chance on love or protect their hearts and move on. The one problem I had with their romance is how quickly Jesse went from brooding and broken-hearted to forgiving and lovesick. It seems he had a change of heart overnight and began pursue Amy in earnest in an effort to win her heart again. There was no progression in Jesse’s emotional journey back to forgiveness.
The first half of the book was spent telling the back story of the McCord family and introducing the reader to the family members, ranch hands, friends and townsfolk. I began to wonder just what direction this book would eventually take since the mystery wasn’t introduced until about half way through the book. At first I thought the search for the gold was the hook, but when mysterious things started happening to Amy I realized that would be the mystery that brought it all together. I have to say I wished the mystery would have been introduced a little earlier on. Since the lost gold is never found I assume the hunt will continue in future books in this series, Montana Destiny and Montana Glory where Zane and Wyatt’s stories will be told.
Montana Legacy is an enjoyable romantic read placing the reader in the heart of Montana ranch life, among sexy cowboys, lost gold and a mystery with a surprise ending you may not see coming.
Other books in the series:
Montana Glory (November 2010)
Add Montana Legacy to your GoodReads shelf