Those Texas Nights
By Delores Fossen
Release Date: December 27, 2016
The Granger siblings thought they'd left their ranching days behind, until fate sends them home to Wrangler's Creek, Texas—and into the passionate arms of those they'd least expect…
It's some run of bad luck when Sophie Granger loses her business and gets left at the altar all in one day. Desperate to not appear jilted, Sophie begs Clay McKinnon, Wrangler's Creek's smoking-hot police chief, to pretend they're having an affair. But Clay refuses, leaving Sophie to retreat to the family ranch to lick her wounds.
Hoping to leave his disreputable past behind, Clay moved to Wrangler's Creek for a fresh start. But that looks unlikely when Sophie's ex-fiancé shows up married to Clay's impulsive kid sister. Overcome, Sophie resuggests the affair—but this time for real. Clay is hesitant. City-girl Sophie isn't usually his type. But he can't deny the desire she elicits—or his yearning to have her plant her cowboy roots for good.
Delores Fossen is fast becoming one of my go-to contemporary western romance authors. I discovered her last year and have been happily working my way through her back list. The humor, sizzle, family dynamics, and quirky characters that I've enjoyed in her earlier books are all on display in Those Texas Nights, book #1 in her new Wrangler's Creek series.
The Granger siblings are not having a good year. On the heels of Sophie being jilted by her long-time fiance, her family's company's CFO (who also happens to be their godfather) has skipped town with the company's money and the FBI suspects he was also laundering money. Everything is frozen, including Sophie and her brother, Garrett's personal assets, forcing them to move home to the family ranch (owned by their brother Roman even though he wants nothing to do with it) until everything can get straightened out. Unfortunately, that also means sharing a home with their meddling, unlikeable mother. I kept waiting for someone to drop kick her into the next county. I sure wanted to.
Months after the jilting and theft, Garrett's marriage is in trouble, single-dad Roman's tween son is rebelling, their CFO has yet to be found, Sophie's ex has eloped and is expecting a child with Clay's impulsive, immature, hormonal, younger sister, and as hard as they try, Clay and Sophie just can't seem to resist the magnetic pull between them, even though they both know nothing good can come from it.
Clay McKinnon is one of the good guys but the guilt and heartache of a past tragedy has him resisting the desire he feels for Sophie. Not to mention the fact that Sophie's spineless ex is now his brother-in-law, a fact that does not make Clay happy. He already has enough problems dealing with his insecure sister, the inept remodeling crew at his house, his loose-lipped staff, a meddling local woman who may or may not be a gypsy/witch/psychic and frankly scares him, and don't even get him started on the feral chickens. The last thing he needs to add to the mix is Sophie Granger and the drama that would come with getting involved with her but he just can't seem to help it.
I had so much fun reading this book. Though there are some serious issues at play, the tone of the book is light, with sizzling love scenes and plenty of humor ranging from soft chuckles to full-out laughter. Several characters are introduced who I hope we'll see more of in future books and novellas. I'm especially looking forward to more of Sophie's rebel brother, Roman and her 30-year-old virgin, fantasy-date obsessed, best friend, Mila. I do hope these two are going to be a couple! I'm also hoping that we'll get to see more of Sophie and Clay in future stories. I haven't had nearly enough of them.