A Soldier’s Dare by Jo McNally

Posted April 30, 2022 by Marsha in 2022 New Release Challenge, Connection or Spin-Off of Another Series, Contemporary Romance, Harlequin, Harlequin Special Edition, Owned, Series, Series Connection, Sexual Content, Small Town Romance / 0 Comments

“You said you’re not scared. Prove it.”

When Jack Radcliffe dares Belle Fortune to kiss him at the Hotel Fortune’s Valentine’s Ball, he thinks he’s just having fun.

She’s a pampered Southern princess newly moved to Texas, and she’s interested in someone else. In other words, she’s “safe.”

From the moment their lips touch, however, the former military man is in trouble.

The woman he shouldn’t want challenges him to confront his painful past—and face his future head-on…

Titles in The Fortunes of Texas multi-author series include — Their New Year’s Beginning by Michelle Majors – A Soldier’s Dare by Jo McNally – Anyone But A Fortune by Judy Duarte – Cinderella Next Door by Nancy Robards Thompson – A Fortune in the Family by Kathy Douglass – Finding Fortune’s Secret by Allison Leigh –

This is an adult 18+ story that may contain language, possible violence, and/or sexual situations geared to an adult audience.

Title:  A Soldier’s Dare
Series:  The Fortunes of Texas #2
Author:  Jo McNally
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Published:  January 25, 2022
Publisher:  Harlequin Special Edition
My Rating:  4.5 stars

A Soldier’s Dare is the second title in The Fortunes of Texas series and I enjoyed its complexities and its simple message so much.  Who would have thought that a dog would be such a matchmaker?  Well, me, because I’ve seen it time and time again never tiring of that unique pleasure of adding animals, particularly dogs into a romantic mix.  But first, we have to back up to the gala where Belle is convinced one man could be her future if he’d only notice her and is goaded into kissing Jack, just to make that guy take notice of her.  It might work, it might not but, oh, what a kiss that turned out to be surprising them both.

Jack and Belle will meet again when his pup practically plows Belle down when they next see each other.  And the rest, as they say, is romantic history… with the required few complications.

I loved the tone of A Soldier’s Dare with the falling in love for Jack and Belle, along with the more intense and emotional inclusion of the Pets2Vets storyline.  While Belle may often come off as a spoiled rich girl, at heart she simply wants to be someone’s first, to be seen for the woman she truly is.  Her compassion for not only pets but for Jack’s situation, even when he confounds her by not talking about it, made her a very real, believable person to me.

Jack is complex.  He’s a returning war vet with a heavy mental burden to carry.  And without giving away spoilers, Jack is hurting as deep as a person can hurt – he’s not talking about this to anyone but it is eating away at his soul and we see that struggle very clearly.  My heart broke for this man and watched his relationship with Belle and Sarge slowly heal those wounds, but he isn’t easy by any means imaginable.

There is laughter among the tears in A Soldier’s Dare, there is also sizzling chemistry, family drama, healing moments, and pets that need healing almost as much as their new owners do – and watching all of that come together in this emotional romance was a pure delight.

I own a Kindle edition of this title.

Available in print or for your favorite e-reader

 

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