He needs a fake fiancée. She finds him irresistible. But soon, she’s falling for him and his hometown.
Drew Ludington left town in shame almost a year ago. He vowed never to return. But his mother needs him back, and even after all that happened, family is important. He will only come back under one condition, though. His business partner has to come with him.
Carly Dubrow owes Drew a lot. He fell into her life almost a year ago when he needed a room at her small-town inn. After only a couple of nights, he offered to help her with her business in exchange for free room and board, and in a short time, he’d pulled her business out of the red. When he asks for a huge favor, she readily agrees, and she’s especially excited to hear he wants her to play his fiancée for the weekend. She’s had a months-long crush on this cowboy, so spending time around him sounds great.
As they get to know Drew’s family, though, Carly starts to feel a little guilty. She doesn’t want to deceive the wonderful people she’s meeting, but it’s clear Drew needs her. It’s very possible she’s falling for the town of Cupid Ridge as much as she’s fallen for its former resident.
Titles in the Cupid Ridge Dude Ranch series include — The Maverick Cowboy —♥— The Brokenhearted Cowboy —♥— The Scorned Cowboy —♥— The Sullen Cowboy —♥—
This is a romance that includes no swearing, no violence, and no sexual content (beyond a few light kisses).
Title: The Scorned Cowboy
Series: Cupid Ridge Dude Ranch #3
Author: Macie St. James
Genre: Modern Western Romance
Published: February 17, 2023
My Rating: 4.5 stars
The Scorned Cowboy is the third title in the Cupid Ridge Dude Ranch series, and we finally get to see and experience Drew’s homecoming after being away for about a year. He needs to touch base with his family for several reasons, the legal battle they’re fighting over the property and to finally settle the differences that sent him away, once and for all. But he’s not really comfortable enough to return home without some backup, so he asks the woman he works with (and is crushing on) to come with him, to pretend to be his fiancée for the time that he’s home, which won’t be long at all.
Carly is the daughter of the people who gave Drew sanctuary, a place to live and to work when his world fell apart because of rumors and gossip.. and mostly because his father acted as though he really believed that gossip and blamed Drew for something he had no part in. To say that she’s definitely interested in more than a working relationship with Drew is kind of an understatement, but she won’t push. If he doesn’t feel the same way, well, then in the friend zone, they’ll stay. Now, she’s agreed to this plan of his that is sure to fail at some point. She’s certain of that because she can’t lie worth anything.
I love this couple, they are such a good fit together, but it will take a bit of time before they each acknowledge their feelings and the love that is growing between them. Drew must face down the majority of his family and come to terms with their reactions. Some good others need working on, but they are his family, and he’s not giving them up again. The truth behind that old gossip and rumor finally comes out, and there are more than a few people who have some attitude adjustment coming home to roost. I think what I loved most about Drew was when his family needed him, he showed up, if reluctantly and with backup, but he did show up… which must have been difficult to do given the way he left home a year ago.
I enjoyed The Scorned Cowboy so much. We have one more story to complete this series, so I’m keeping an eye out for The Sullen Cowboy. If you love a well-written, realistic, believable romance with touches of mystery, history, falling in love, and settling past family issues, then you’ll want to pick up Drew’s and Carly’s story (or start the series) soon.
*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the author or author’s team via Booksprout. The opinions expressed in this review are my own – good, bad, or indifferent.*
Available for the Kindle as this title and series are currently in KU
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