“This place is kind of full of sad history,” Sadie said.
“Yeah. Welcome to the Garrett Ranch, where the motto is, if it doesn’t kill you…just wait.”
Sadie Miller is tired of always running. Her whole life has been spent without roots, moving place to place, unable to stick anywhere. When something isn’t going right, she gets that itch and off she goes. Her only steady companion has been her cat. Her life has finally come full circle and she returns to Copper Ridge with the intention of making a place to stay. She has no choice because she signed a five year lease on a house she intends to make into a bed and breakfast.
The house is on the Garrett family property which happens to be the home of the man to arrest her so many years ago. She was an unruly teenager and the actions of that night changed everything in her life. Eli Garrett might have been the one to stop her night of drinking but that night also set off a chain of events that ended with her father beating her almost to death and her leaving home. After living so many years with the abuse and her mother not sticking up for her, she can’t take it any more and the pattern of her running is started.
Now back in the place where it all started Sadie looks to change her life. She doesn’t want to run. She wants to find a place of her own. Eli had no idea his brother planned to lease out a piece of their property and is furious with him. He doesn’t need trouble like Sadie in his life. He has enough on his hands taking care of the town and his broken family. She will just add to the burden he already carries.
Unfortunately for Eli’s peace of mind, there is nothing simple going on between him and Sadie. The sparks are instant and soon they cannot resist the pull. What starts as only sex, that is all Eli will allow is to be, deepens into so much more.
He advanced on her, his expression dark. He extended his hands and cupped her face, tilting her head backward, his fingers forked through her hair. “Don’t make this a joke, Sadie.”
“I’m not,” she said, her heart tightening, like he’d grabbed hold of that instead of her face and squeezed tight.
“You’re trying to make like of it so you don’t feel it. I can’t do that. As you pointed out, I’m a pretty humorless bastard.” He traced the edge of her lower lip with his thumb. “So no more talking. Don’t try to make it funny. I have to feel it. So you damn well have to feel it, too.”
But when a bump in the road comes, harsh words are spoken and Sadie reverts back to her old habits of running. Eli knows he screwed up but will he be able to convince Sadie he is worth the second chance?
Part Time Cowboy is a book full of heavy emotions. Eli is a caretaker, a very deep man with strong feelings and he projects those feelings in the grumpiest of ways. He wants to do everything for everyone but feels the weight of not being able to save each person. That weight is especially hard to carry when he realizes he wasn’t able to save Sadie when she needed it. He is not someone who lets people in and he really struggles with what he feels for Sadie.
Sadie isn’t as deep but she also has things to work through. There is a powerful scene between the two where Sadie spills out the buried deep hurt and blame directed toward that Eli wasn’t able to save her from her father. He was the one supposed to save her and he didn’t do his part.
There are some secondary characters, including Connor, Eli’s brother, who should have really good stories coming up. Connor is going to be a doozy as he is mired in grief over the loss of his wife. How his HEA will play out should be a very interesting read.
Part Time Cowboy isn’t all heavy emotions and depth, the banter between Eli and Sadie is great. They are both quick witted and have come backs that made me giggle while reading. Plus, the chemistry between them? Yowser. There are some hot scenes in this book. Overall, this is an extremely well-rounded romance. It has great conversation, steamy sex scene, intriguing secondary characters and emotional pull. Final grade- B
“Did someone spike your Diet Coke?” Eli asked.
“I’m just sick of this overprotective crap you guys always pull. ‘Boys are gross,'” she said, in a bad imitation of Connor’s voice. “You’ll get cooties if you touch them.”
“I never said that,” Connor said.
“You told me penises had teeth,” she said, deadpan.
Eli’s head whipped around to face Connor. “Did you really?”
“I don’t remember,” Connor said.
“You did,” Kate said. I spent the next two years concerned for the health and safety of the inner thighs of every boy I knew.”