Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Review: Darn Good Cowboy Christmas

Darn Good Cowboy Christmas (Spikes & Spurs - Book 3) by Carolyn Brown

Publication Date: October 4, 2011
Publisher: Sourcebooks Inc.
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Western
Pages: Paperback, 379pp
ISBN-13: 978-1402261572
ISBN: 1402261578

(Received for an honest review from Sourcebooks Casablanca)

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes &  Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound

Carolyn Brown on the WEB: website

Books in the Series: Love Drunk Cowboy (2011), Red's Hot Cowboy (2011), Darn Good Cowboy Christmas (2011), One Hot Cowboy Wedding (Coming in 2012)

CoverArt: Click on the pic for a larger, clearer image of the books in this series.

Excerpt from Darn Good Cowboy Christmas



Raylen O'Donnell is one smokin' cowboy. He could have any woman he wants, but he's never been able to forget a certain dark-haired girl who disappeared from his life. So when she suddenly returns to the ranch next door, Raylen's not fixing to let her get away again...


Raised in a traveling carnival, Lizelle Hanson thought all she wanted was a house that didn't have wheels and a sexy cowboy for her very own. But settling down's going to take some getting used to, and catching Raylen, the hotter-than-hell cowboy next door, might just take a little holiday magic...


Darn Good Cowboy Christmas is the third book in Carolyn Brown's "Spikes & Spurs" series. Brown's trademark cowboy characters are smokin' hot and her heroines are always full of sass and vinegar. Brown fans will be ecstatic with her latest release, which continues to follow the adventures and trials of the intrepid O'Donnell family, living in the Oklahoma, Texas border country. A great contemporary romance with a touch of Christmas spirit!

I'll be the first to admit that contemporary romance is probably not my favorite type of book under the romance umbrella. Being a former history major, I love a good historical romance. Because of my Scottish heritage, I love a good highlander book. I do read some books with western themes from Christian Fiction writers, but those tend to be historicals as well. So when I first started reading and reviewing Carolyn Brown's Spikes & Spurs series, I was somewhat skeptical whether I would like a contemporary cowboy romance. I even kind of wondered if there were still any real cowboys left, but Brown has certainly convinced me that they are alive and well! This is a great series, full of heart and home and lots of southern hospitality. The addition of a Christmas themed book was a genius move from Brown and I thoroughly enjoyed Darn Good Cowboy Christmas.

I was really hoping after reading the first two books of the series that Raylen O'Donnell would get his own book and I was extremely happy that he does in Darn Good Cowboy Christmas. Brown introduces Raylen in Love Drunk Cowboy and continues to mention him here and there. He is character that has always held my interest. First of all it's his name... Raylen, which reminds of me of Raylen Givens from the TV series, "Justified," who is also a very sexy cowboy. But, it's also his laid back southern attitude. He doesn't get in a hurry about anything and takes his sweet time even in his relationships. I liked the fact that Brown shows him as a man who loves deeply and is passionate about everything he does, from the horses he works with to the women in his life. Not to mention that fact that he is totally smokin' hot. Brown's descriptions of him will certainly make the readers mouth water and the steamy scenes with Liz, will really hit the spot with romance fans!

Liz was a little harder for me to get into, probably because I really like Raylen's character and I felt the person Brown chose for him would have to really special. Brown certainly pulled that off by making Liz a very unique character. I loved the fact that she was a former carnie that wanted nothing more than roots of her own. She is full of sass and vinegar and she knows how to take care of herself. She also doesn't have a problem knowing what she wants or how to get it. In this case her Christmas wish is Raylen. I enjoyed the witty banter between the two and the sizzling romantic scenes. I liked the fact that Liz had a bit of trouble adjusting to a more sedentary existence, because it felt natural and right for her have some misgivings. Liz and Raylen together made one heck of couple, once she settled down a little bit.

The Christmas theme makes this one perfect for the holiday season and fans of the series will love catching up with the rest of the O'Donnell clan and their friends. This is the kind of family that many people dream about having. Close knit, full of fun, butting in where they don't belong, out of love and so much more. I'm pleased to say the O'Donnell's remind me of my own slightly dysfunctional bunch... LOL! The small town feel of the area where they all reside is also very homey and inviting. The kind of town I'd like to live in and so would many of the readers of this series. Brown always has a way with her secondary characters, her settings and most definitely her cowboys! I recommend this one to contemporary romance fans and those who love man in boots and hat... (fans herself)!

Darn Good Cowboy Christmas is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.

I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

Carolyn Brown is an award-winning author with more than fifty books, published, and credits her eclectic family for her humor and writing ideas. Her books include the cowboy trilogy Lucky in Love, One Lucky Cowboy, and Getting Lucky, the Honky Tonk series, I Love this Bar, Hell Yeah, My Give a Damn's Busted and Honky Tonk Christmas, and her new Spikes and Spurs series beginning with Love Drunk Cowboy and Red's Hot Cowboy. She was born in Texas but grew up in southern Oklahoma where she and her husband, Charles, a retired English teacher, make their home. They have three grown children and enough grandchildren to keep them young.


Kathleen O said...

i have this on my tbr shelf to read.. I am big, big fan of Carolyn Brown...