Texas Rain by Jodi Thomas

I came across this author a few days ago and decided to look her up.  I guess the title of the book intrigued me, Texas Rain.  I love my romances in the Victorian time, also modern, Irish and western.  I have not read a lot of romance westerns but what I have read was fairly well written and interesting.  The series sounded good and there are only four books, each on a separate sibling.  So I decided to give the Texas family a try.

The Plot of Texas Rain:

“Honest, straightforward, and ruggedly handsome, Travis McMurray is also more than a little busted, the result of an ambush during his service as a Texas Ranger.  Beautiful Rainey Adams is in a fix of her own:  On the run from an arranged marriage she’ll do just about anything to keep her freedom.  The first time they meet, she steals a kiss-and his horse.  The second time, she’s an angel of mercy who eases him through a terrible fever…and then disappears.

When Travis recovers, he’s determined to track down this intriguing woman and bring her back to the Whispering Mountain Ranch as his bride.  But this renegade may be too much for even the toughest Ranger to handle…”

So trying out a new author is sometimes nerve racking.  You don’t know if you will like the book or if you will love it.  Jodi Thomas I found to be intriguing and has a certain wit with her characters.  I could see them living in Texas, in the past but the talk was modern.  The characters were dynamic.  The family connection is always fun to read about.  The siblings are all wonderful and will be fun to read about in each of their own books.  Rainey is a very determined and brave woman, she is a strong character which is perfect to be set up with Travis.

The one thing I found myself doing was seeing how far I got in the novel. The novel has it’s time of being very fast but then things slow down.  Now that doesn’t mean it was not a fantastic novel because it was, but at times I wished things were picking up a bit.  But all in all the book was fun, charming and entertaining to read.

Texas Rain brings a little of the west back to the pages as Jodi Thomas writes the first book of the series Whispering Mountains.

To Charm a Prince by Patricia Grasso

Tormenting love scenes, torturous characters, surprises that didn’t leave a smile on your face and some that did, eternal romance, and endless ups and downs, but amazing to read.

“She is Samantha Douglas, second daughter of a scandalously impoverished earl, a quiet, unassuming miss who is literally swept off her feet at her first London ball by a dashing, mysteries stranger who awakens the passionate woman inside…

He is Prince Rudolf Kazanov, heir to the Russian throne, who has fled his homeland with his English mother and young daughter-and most of the Kazanov fortune.  Though hard and cynical when it comes to matters of loyalty and love, he is enchanted by Samantha’s delicate beauty and sweet innocence.  And as passion draws her into his world, they race to outwit his enemies, hoping with all their hearts that their story will end happily ever after…”

Samantha our lead is seduced into thinking the Prince likes her but she knows that no one will ever really love her, a cripple.  So she is not surprised he does not call upon her when he said he would.  Six months later Samantha is getting ready for her soon to be marriage to Alexander Campbell whom she doesn’t love but is marrying to end a feud.  But her chance of marriage to him is alerted as Rudolf is back and gets Samantha mixed in with his own problems that are dealing with him and his brother, Vladimir.

After surviving the abduction both Rudolf and Samantha journey off to Scotland to keep Vladimir away.  Upon this journey Samantha soon finds she is losing a battle for her heart but that is not all she is losing.  Samantha loses her reputation, her family, her virginity but along the road she gains Rudolf and three strays.  In Scotland for both Rudolf and Samantha everything is bliss, only thing Rudolf wouldn’t due is remarry again because of his first wife, but when they are summoned back to England the old Rudolf disappears.  He has changed to a new person especially when Samantha finds herself pregnant and refuses to marry.  She doesn’t want to trap Rudolf in a loveless marriage.

But Rudolf gets his way along with the families help and gets her to the alter but his first wife interrupts the ceremony.  Of course Rudolf does end up marrying Samantha a few days later, but he had to order her to do it.  But their marriage is anything but bliss.  Rudolf continues to order her around and goes out at night without her to balls and the Times writes about it.  The next day Samantha has to read all about it.  But there is all a motive in all of this torture.

As I was reading this book I feel in love with the two characters of Rudolf and Samantha.  They were very realistic with how they fought at their relationship, but they care for each other.  Rudolf can’t show his feelings and is treating her cruelly to keep her away.  He has a secret that would make Samantha leave him.  I wanted to yell at Rudolf for treating her with such crudeness and to cry with Samantha as her heart breaks.  If the book didn’t end with a happy conclusion I know I would have been very angry, so thankfully there was a fantastic ending.

Overall this was a fantastic, wonderful book to read.   Any good book should get a reaction from the reader and it did.  My reaction to this book had my heart  fluttering and pounding in frustration and anticipation to what would happen next.