Thursday, 26 May 2011
365 books in 365 days Challenge ... book #58
Honeymoon with the Rancher - Donna Alward
N.B. The above details relate to the North American release of this book.
From the back cover:
"Tomas Mendoza left the city behind when he retreated to a rustic Argentine ranching guesthouse after losing his fiancée. He has found peace working the land…until socialite Sophia Hollingsworth plants her stilettos in front of him and demands to stay the week.
Sophia is nursing private hurts of her own—after all, she is on her honeymoon…alone. Her bravado is a cover act to show everyone she can stand on her own two feet. Trouble is, she's in danger of being swept away into the rancher's arms!"
Most of the books I read tend to be in the Modern/Presents range, however I do enjoy reading books from the more traditional Cherish/Romance lines. They are well paced, warm and emotional books, and this one is no exception.
The book begins with the heroine Sophia arriving at the Esta Vista del Cielo ranch, not only is she there alone on what should have been her honeymoon, she also discovers that the reservation was cancelled without her knowledge due to a recent fire. The hero Tomas reluctantly agrees to let Sophia stay, even though he is annoyed with the prospect of having to keep the seemingly spoilt Sophia entertained. Sophia was expecting to find a luxury spa resort, instead she finds out it's a working ranch where guests are expected to pitch in with all the chores. Tomas expects Sophia to live up to his impression of her and is surprised when she puts her all into learning and doing the jobs he sets her. Sophia is determined to prove to both herself and Tomas that she is not as useless as people think. As they spend time together they begin to open up and share their secrets and hurts with each other, which leads to them falling in love but afraid to admit it for fear of getting hurt again.
The first thing I noticed about this book was the beautifully described settings and surroundings, thanks to the brilliant writing I could really visualise them completely. This was particularly fantastic at the very beginning when Sophia arrives at the ranch and also when they visit Iguazu Falls. Both characters were well developed, I really liked Sophia and how she started off being the person other people expected her to be but feeling a little lost and as the story progressed she became more and more confident. I love character growth in romance novels and Donna Alward has done this perfectly in this book.
There isn't a lot of 'humour' in this book, it's actually quite serious and honest but that fits with the overall pace of the book, and lets face it, sometimes life can kick you about a bit! The HEA is very satisfying and I was left with a warm feeling inside. A thoroughly enjoyable read,
This is the first book by Donna Alward I have read but I will definitely be looking out for more in the future!