One Night Rodeo (Blacktop Cowboys #4) by Lorelei James
Series: Blacktop Cowboys #4
Also in this series: Turn and Burn
Published by Penguin, Signet
Publication Date: August 7, 2012
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All it takes is one night to change a cowboy’s life…
Barrel racer Celia Lawson knows better than to tangle with bull rider Kyle Gilchrist. The sexy cowboy’s love ‘em and leave ‘em ways have earned him a reputation on the rodeo circuit, and he’s always seen her as his best friend’s kid sister. But after one wild, tequila-fueled night, Celia wakes up to find out she’s gotten herself hitched—to a man she never should have married!
When Celia insists on an annulment, Kyle has no good reason to say no—except he isn’t ready to let go of his new bride. But then Kyle inherits a sprawling Wyoming ranch, and seizes the opportunity to enlist Celia’s help. She agrees to lend a hand—with two conditions: He has to get up to speed as a rancher within six months; then they’ll get a divorce. And their marriage will be in name only.
Kyle gives in to Celia’s demand, yet he's ready to prove to her he has what it takes to turn their one night rodeo into a lifetime of love….
Celia Lawson and Kyle Gilchrist have been friends for a long time but they’ve also been adversaries. They would snipe at each other constantly and push each other in ways that others didn’t. That was until Kyle started falling in love with Celia. Yeah, they still argued but for the last couple of years, it was mostly arguing about Breck, her boyfriend. Kyle thought she could do better, and she could. One night in Las Vegas they both get shit-faced and wake up married. Celia is all for a quick annulment but Kyle finally has Celia right where he wants her and he hopes he can talk her into never getting an annulment.
The day they wake up from their drunken stupor Kyle gets a call from his mother. She says that his father is dying. Kyle’s confused because he’s never known his father and his mother has always been closed-mouthed about the man. She comes clean but not in time for Kyle to get to Wyoming and see his father before he dies. The father DID leave Kyle everything – his ranch, his equipment, and all his money. Kyle has been saving up for years to buy his own ranch so this is a gift from the gods. Kyle knows little about ranching and he convinces Celia to stay married to him for six months, teach him about ranching and then she can go her merry way. He hopes after that time she’ll want to stay with him, of course.
Celia is a lot less opposed to being married to Kyle than she lets on. She agrees to the marriage continuing and they start out in harmony – taking care of the ranch. They have their ups and downs and deal with it in their own way. They both have secrets from the other but their own insecurities may be the thing that tears them apart forever.
Where do I begin? There are so many good things to say about this book that I’m not sure where to start. Celia is finally coming into her own, spreading her wings and becoming the woman that I knew she could be. Her brothers – though I liked them in their own novels they had completely discounted their sister in their lives and I didn’t like them too much for that. Celia had lost so much and I knew that Kyle could give her so much of what she needed: love, affection, romance – not to mention the fact that he listened to her about their ranch and didn’t try to second guess her or downright ignore her like her brothers had. Abe and Hank started to make up for their mistakes in this book but I think it will take a long time before they can come up to scratch. Celia flourished with Kyle and I loved seeing them together.
Now Kyle could be an ass when he was in his own head and being a guy, i.e. non-communicative. However that didn’t happen all that often and he was a kind and loving man. He was raised by a single mom and because of this was respectful and not dismissive with Celia. He really showed her another side of him that others didn’t see. He did have a freakin’ boatload of insecurities, as did Celia, but they worked them out and in the end came together in a great way.
I really like this series so far, some books more than others, but overall I definitely think it’s a winner.