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A Maverick for Christmas (Montana Mavericks: The Texans Are Coming! series Book 5) Kindle Edition
Hot Off the Presses:
Thunder Canyon's Most Upstanding Citizen Has Finally Found His Ms. Right And She Isn't Letting Him Get Away!
The rumors have been confirmed: Abigail Cates is wildly in love with Hollis "Cade" Pritchett. But the honorable second Pritchett brother barely knows she exists. Until the youngest Cates daughter makes up her mind to get her man. Now the gossip mills are churning overtime as the town's tweeters try to out-scoop each other on this blossoming romance!
Maybe it's the wedding fever running through Thunder Canyon. Or maybe the town's most eligible bachelor is finally realizing that Ms. Right has been here all along. Could a marriage proposal be next? Stay tuned, dear readers, to find out if Cade will get up the courage to pop the questionjust in time to throw the biggest Christmas wedding the Montana town has ever seen!
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Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Cade looked away. Since that insane moment he'd proposed to Thunder Canyon's beauty queen, the woman he'd dated casually the past few years, he'd become all too aware of his burning need for a family of his own. It didn't make sense because Cade wasn't interested in falling in love. He'd done that once and lost the woman to an accident. He wasn't interested in risking his heart, but he wanted more than what he had now. A partnership in his father's business, his own spread just outside of town and his hobby rebuilding motorcycles. Oh, and his hound dog, Stella. He should have listed her first.
From his side, he heard a sniffling sound. Curious, he glanced over and saw Abby Cates wiping her nose as she leaned against the cafe window. His stomach clenched. Abby, little sister of the woman he'd asked to marry him during the Frontier Days celebration. That had been a monumental mistake.
He heard Abby sniff again and Cade felt a surge of concern. He should check on the girl. The poor thing looked upset. He moved toward her.
"Hey, what's up? Or down?"
Abby glanced up in shock, her wide eyes blinking in surprise. "Hi," she said and gave another sniff and surreptitious wipe of her nose with her tissue. "What are you doing here?"
"Thinking about getting a piece of pie," he said. "Long day."
She nodded and blinked away her tears. "This is the beginning of one of your busy seasons, isn't it?"
"Yeah, how'd you remember?" he asked.
"Osmosis," she said. "I guess I eventually noticed during the last few years when you didn't hang around the house as much."
"Yeah," he said. "So, what's with the sniffles? I don't think it's allergies or a cold."
She shrugged and lowered her gaze, her eyelids hiding her emotions from him. "I don't know. Lots of changes going on at my house. I guess I'm going to miss
Laila now that she's getting married," she said, then froze and met his gaze. "I'm so sorry. I didn't mean to say"
He waved his hand in dismissal. "No problem. My pride was hurt more than anything else. Laila and I were never crazy in love. I shouldn't have been such a darned fool by proposing to her," he said.
"You weren't the fool. Laila was. She should have never let you get away," she said.
Cade laughed and shook his head. It felt nicer than he'd like to admit for Abby to rush to his defense, but he knew more than most that romance and emotion could be fickle and elusive. He shoved his hands into the pockets of his sheepskin jacket. "You shouldn't be out here in the cold," he said. "Let me buy you a cup of hot chocolate."
She met his gaze for a long moment, and he saw a flurry of emotions he couldn't quite name except one. Defiance.
She licked her lips. "I'd like something a little stronger than hot chocolate."
Surprise punched through him. "Something stronger," he said. "You're a little young for that, aren't you?"
She gave a husky chuckle. "Are you suffering from a little dementia due to your advanced years? I'm twenty-two."
"Whoa," he said. "When did I miss that?"
"I guess you weren't looking," she said wryly. Her chocolate-brown eyes flashed with humor, and his gaze slid over her silky, long brown hair.
"I guess not," he said. "So you want to go to the
"Sure," she said with a shrug, and they walked down the street to the town's most popular bar and hangout. It was crowded when they walked inside, so he hooked his hand under her elbow and guided her to the far end of the bar.
"Hey, Abby," a young man said from halfway across the room.
She glanced up and shot the guy a smile. "Hi, Abby," a young woman called. "Hey, Corinne," she said.
"You seem pretty popular here," Cade said, finding a space next to the bar. "How often do you come?"
She shook her head and rolled her eyes. "I know those people from my classes at college. I'm usually too busy to spend much time here. They're probably surprised to see me here."
He nodded. "What do you want to drink?"
"A beer's okay," she said with a shrug.
He noticed her lack of enthusiasm. "What kind?"
"Whatever you're having is fine," she said.
He felt a twinge of amusement. "You really don't like beer."
"I'm working on it," she said. "At least once a year."
He laughed out loud. "I'll get you one of those pink girly drinks. Cosmo," he said to the bartender. "And a beer for me. Whatever you have on draft."
Moments later, she sipped her pink martini and he drank his beer. "It's loud in here," he said.
She stirred her drink with the tiny straw. "Yeah, I guess that might bother you older folks," she said with a naughty smile.
He shook his head. Her teasing gave him a kick. "Yeah, I'm thirty. Don't rub it in. What have you been doing lately?"
"School. College," she corrected. "I'm also working at the youth center. And as you know, my family can get a little demanding. I have a part-time job teaching skiing lessons at the resort when I can fit it in. What about you? How's that new motorcycle coming?"
He was surprised she'd remembered. "Close to perfection, but I'm still tinkering with it."
"You wouldn't know perfection if it slapped you in the face," she teased.
Cade liked the way her long eyelashes dipped over her eyes flirtatiously. Someday, Abby could be trouble, he thought. "What do you mean by that?"
"I mean you have that perfection complex. Nothing you do is ever good enough. Not with your woodworking. Not with your motorcycle."
She nailed him in one fell swoop, taking him off guard. "How'd you know that?"
"I've known you for years." She took the last sip of her cosmo martini. "How could I not know that?"
For one sliver of a second, she looked at him as if he was a dork then shrugged. "You want another one?" he asked.
She shook her head and smiled. "No. I'm a lightweight. Already feel this one. I'll take some water."
Cade ordered water for her and continued talking with Laila's little sister with whom he'd played board games and computer games when he'd been waiting for Laila. He was distracted by her mouth. Especially when she licked her lips after taking a sip of her water. Her lips were plump, shiny and sexy. He shouldn't notice, but he sure did.
"So you're busy at work," she said and took another long sip of water. "Bet your father's driving you crazy."
"Yeah," he admitted. "No need to repeat that."
She laughed. "I won't. That could be tricky working with your dad. I mean, I love my own dad, but I can't control him."
"That's for sure," he said, thinking of his own father.
She clicked her half-empty water glass against his beer and dipped her head. "We agree. Cheers."
"So, what are you majoring in?" he asked.
"Psychology. I finish next spring, but I may need to get an advanced degree. I like working with the teens."
"I can see where you would be good at that," he said, thinking that although Abby appeared very young, she was pretty mature for her age.
"I don't know what I'll do after I graduate. I haven't decided if I'll leave Thunder Canyon or not," she said.
Her statement gave him a start. "You would leave town?"
"I may have to if I want to get an advanced degree. Plus, with everything going on with my family, it may be time for me to strike out on my own by then."
He nodded. "If you wanted to stay, you could get an advanced degree online. And just because you move out of your parents' house doesn't mean you have to move out of town."
She smiled. "You almost sound like you'd like me stay. That can't be true. You barely notice me."
"You're a quality girl" He broke off. "Woman," he corrected himself. "I hate to see Thunder Canyon lose a good woman like you."
"Ah, so it's your civic duty to encourage me to stay here," she said.
He felt a twist of discomfort. "Lots of people would miss you."
"Well, I haven't made any decisions yet. I need to finish my classes first. I'm just glad the end is in sight. What do you think about the rivalry between LipSmackin' Ribs and DJ's Rib Shack?"
Cade would have had to have been deaf and blind not to know about the controversy between Thunder Canyon's longtime favorite barbecue restaurant DJ's Rib Shack and the the new rib place, which featured waitresses dressed in tight T-shirts. "I'm a DJ's man all the way. I don't like it that the Hitching Post started featuring LipSmackin' Ribs on the menu and I refuse to order them. I'll buy drinks here, but no ribs."
"So you've never even visited LipSmackin' Ribs?"
"I went a few times just to see what the fuss was about," he said.
"You mean the skimpy uniforms the waitresses wear," she said.
He shook his head and rubbed his jaw. "I pity your future boyfriend. He won't be able to pull anything over on you."
"Future? How do you know I don't have a boyfriend right now?" she asked. "I don't, but I certainly could. There are even some men who think I'm attractive, some who ask me to go out with t...--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B005JSRAPG
- Publisher : Harlequin Special Edition; Original edition (November 1, 2011)
- Publication date : November 1, 2011
- Language : English
- File size : 477 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 224 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 0373656335
- Best Sellers Rank: #637,562 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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Note: Stand along book. Montana Mavericks multi-author series
SLOW READ! Feisty, good-hearted heroine, interesting storyline, great sibling interactions, and good secondary characters. HOWEVER, the writing is stilted, the repetitive phrasing irritating, the dialogue obvious and sometimes patronizing, lacks descriptive imagery, too macho-macho, and just hard to get through.
THE STORY revolves around hard working psychology student, Abigail Cates who decides to do something about her long-time crush on artist/woodworker, Cade Pritchett. He is reluctant, warning her about other men's bad intentions and being taking advantage of, then he jumps her bones. This hormone-driven lust-fest and his request to keep their relationships a secret is disingenuous, but eventually it turns into a sweet romance. Unfortunately, the ending is a predictable fizzle.
OVERALL, mediocre -- the writing is fragmented and lacks flow, and the storyline has potential but is poorly developed, Cade's character is dour and hypocritical, and his epiphany at the end seemed rushed and forced. Not worth the time. There are a lot better books out there.
For books with complex characters and good storytelling try N. Bruhns, A. Stuart, R.C. Ryan, or L. Wilde. For sweet, funny, romances with great descriptive imagery and heart touching angst, try Susan Fox, Cara Colter, and E. Palfrey.