Series: Crossroads Ranch #1
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: February 27, 2018
Format: eARC, 320 pages
How I got it: NetGalley
Reading Challenges: 2018 Tackle My TBR Challenge
Ten years ago, Jack Everett left his family's ranch without a backward glance. Now, what was supposed to be a quick trip home for his father's funeral has suddenly become more complicated. The ranch Jack can handle---he might be a lawyer, but he still remembers how to work with his hands. But turning around the failing vineyard he's also inherited? That requires working with the one woman he never expected to see again.
Ava Ellis broke her own heart the night she let Jack go. She was young and scared---and secretly pregnant with Jack's baby. Now that he's back and asking for her help, Ava sees her opportunity to right the wrongs of the past. But how will he feel about the son he's never known? Could this be their second chance---or their final heartbreak?
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
It had been ages since I read a cowboy romance, but I’m damn glad I picked Second Chance Cowboy up. It’s not a genre I read a lot of, but I find I really enjoy it when I do. That was certainly the case here. It’s also been ages since I read an A.J. Pine book and I enjoyed her style here.
Second chance romance is one of my favorite tropes and once you add a secret baby, I’m basically all in. (Though I guess Owen can’t really be called a baby since he’s 9, but you get my point.) The circumstances that split up Ava and Jack were sad. Though it all happened in the prologue, before I really knew either of the character, it’s still tough to watch two people who are obviously in love, with their whole lives ahead of them, break up. That’s why I’m glad most of the book is set in the present, when they were reunited and the truth came out. It’d been ten years since they laid eyes on each other, but that spark was absolutely still there.
I really liked both Ava and Jack. It was kinda hard for me to reconcile Ava’s decision to keep Owen from Jack for all this time, but the more backstory I got, it actually made sense. Jack was definitely weighed down by his past and that of his father and he did need to get out of their town and make a life for himself. I just wish that life had included Ava and Owen sooner. But that wasn’t their story. This was. As much as I hated them being apart, it was lovely to watch them work their way back to each other. For a story that could’ve been extremely heavy, it was kept not overwhelmingly so, and instead, had just the right amount of feels for me.
The list of things I loved about this book is long, but I won’t waste your time on all of it. Some highlights include the romance (duh), character development, and the secondary characters and the relationship between them and the primary characters. (OMG Jack’s brothers! The brotherly banter is the best.) I’m definitely looking forward to more from Crossroads Ranch.
“I loved you, Jack. I loved you every day we were together, and I’m pretty sure I’d fall for the man you’ve become if I had the chance to.”
“I can’t watch you walk into a room without wanting to touch you. You’re like the goddamn sun, and I’m the closest planet. Powerless against your gravity.”
“I love the girl you were when I met you and the amazing woman and mother you’ve become. I’m a better man for knowing you. For loving you.”
Do you have a favorite cowboy romance?
I’m feeling the need for more.