by Susan May Warren
Average Goodreads Rating:
Before I get into my review, here's the synopsis from Goodreads:
Nick Noble hadn't planned on being the prodigal son. But when his father dies and leaves half of Silver Buckle--the Noble family ranch--to Nick's former best friend, he must return home to face his mistakes, and guarantee that the Silver Buckle stays in the Noble family. Award-winning journalist Piper Sullivan believes Nick framed her brother for murder, and she's determined to find justice. But following Nick to the Silver Buckle and posing as a ranch cook proves more challenging than she thinks. So does resisting his charming smile. As Nick seeks to overturn his father's will--and Piper digs for answers--family secrets surface that send Nick's life into a tailspin. But there's someone who's out to take the Silver Buckle from the Noble family, and he'll stop at nothing--even murder--to make it happen.
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars.
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: I love cowboys. My friends like to tease me because I'd choose a guy in a cowboy over a guy in a tux. So when I found out this series was about a cowboy, I was really excited. Then there's Piper a journalist. I'm always interested about books about journalists because I am one. So this book had a very interesting premise.
However, as much as I did love this one, I fell like it fell a little shy of its potential. When I compare it with other books in this genre, it's not my favorite. However, I did really really like it.
The book is pitched as a modern-day version of The Lost Prodigal. A comparison that is right on the money.
When Nick Noble finds out his father left him half of the Silver Buckle and gave half to his old best friend and now enemy. Nick can't believe it and comes home to protect his family and their land. But nobody else seems to agree with him. His sister Stephanie doesn't seem concerned about letting the ranch go. If anything, she sounds down-right frustrated that he returned for the wrong reasons.
Piper knows her brother didn't commit murder. In fact, he has just been acquitted of that crime. And she knows that Nick was the one who set him up. She's determined to bring Nick down. And if that means pretending like she can cook, then that's what she'll do. She's a journalist. She can handle it.
But as Piper and Nick set out for revenge, they'll find that sometimes redemption, forgiveness, and second chances are even better.
This book had a hint of suspense, but I felt like it could have been developed better. It was always on the periphery. I would have liked to see that plot be more developed.
I did however love the characters and the way that we were able to delve into all of their minds. That was great. The characters were not perfect but neither were they so flawed that it was unbelievable. They all had issues to work through and the past to overcome.
Susan May Warren is a great writer. This is a series that I can't wait to finish. I'm excited to meet Rafe, the rodeo star in the next novel.
In Summary: Warren's writing is nothing short of fantastic. Her characters are believable, the pacing moves rather quickly, and her story is bound to draw readers in. However, as much as I loved it, I would have liked it better if the suspense had been more developed.
The Wrap-up: All in all a great start to a great series. I'm excited to see what Susan May Warren does with this novel. If you like Christian Fiction, romantic suspense, or books about cowboys, then you would probably enjoy this book.
Up Next: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins