Luke Adler lives for his ranch. It’s the only reason he agreed to get on board with his sister’s grand plan for guests staying on the property.
Nothing prepares him for the force of nature that is Samantha Morrison. When she arrives on his ranch to help construct this new part of his business, what he expects and what he gets are two entirely different things.
He expects a no-nonsense businessman. Straightforward and simple.
What he gets is a sunshine smile, sweet sass, and a woman who pushes every button and boundary he has.
He tries to ignore the draw, the urges she makes him feel. But when she gets close, he only wants her closer.
She makes him question his decisions, his thoughts, and the idea that being alone is best for him.
Even when they are consumed by the fire between them, he knows they come from two different worlds and he has to let her go.
But when the time comes, can he do that? Can he live without her sunshine to warm his cold heart? Or can this cowboy learn a new trick?
|Sunshine & Sammy
|Vested Interest: ABC Corp Series (Book 5)
|Pages / Length:
|342 / 7hrs 23m
|Grumpy Loves Sunshine
|Point of View:
|First Person, Past Tense, Dual Viewpoint (H & h)
|Outside Alberta, Canada
|29th July, 2022
Saddle up – it’s cowboy time!
I am a massive fan of Melanie Moreland but I’ve still to read her hugely popular Vested Interest series. I mention this because this book’s heroine, Sammy, is the daughter of Van and Liv from the fifth book in that series, Van. It’s also the fifth book in the Vested Interest spin-off series, ABC Corp, about the children of the original books. Despite that, they all stand alone and while there are lots of cameos, you don’t have to read any other book to like and enjoy this one.
Sammy is something of a business consultant come TV personality who helps people turn their businesses into successes. She’s highly sought after but she chooses siblings, Rachel and Luke Adler’s, ranch as her next project. Rachel is all in but Luke isn’t happy to have some hoity toity city girl prancing round his ranch and being a general nuisance. Little does he know what he’s actually in for when he and Sammy butt heads.
I loved Sammy. She was such a kick-ass woman who knew what she wanted and was confident enough to grab it with both hands when the opportunity arose. The way she went toe-to-toe with Luke was ah-may-zing and even better was the way that she put him in his place and on his bum when he needed it – which was often. Maxine Mitchell is, as always, Melanie Moreland’s preferred narrator for her heroine. And there’s a reason for this continued choice as Ms Mitchell once again nails it. She’s Sammy to a T. She’s got the sass in her voice, as well as the emotion and tells us the story rather than just reads it. I would be appalled if anyone else was cast to narrate a Melanie Moreland novel.
I have to agree with Ms Moreland that the sunshine and grumpy trope it one of my favourites. And Luke is the poster boy for this trope. Gawd is he grumpy. Even when things change between him and Sammy, his grumpiness shines through on occasion and I loved it. He’s broken and scared of love – poor thing – and he doesn’t believe in love. These are the best kind of heroes to watch fall, kicking and screaming into love. Happy sighs.
Much like Maxine Mitchell, John Lane is Melanie Moreland’s heroes. And yet he adds a difference to every character that means I hear a different character with each different portrayal. In his portrayal of Luke, he adds a bit of a twang to his voice to give us the full cowboy effect. I was worried at first, but in the end, of course John Lane kills it. He’s John Lane, after all. Oh, and for those who have read or listened to previous Melanie Moreland books, John Lane manages to utter ‘little dragon’ in this book, too. More happy sighs.
Any kind of antagonism between a couple also really ramps up the sexual tension and add to that their sizzling chemistry, Luke and Sammy together are explosive. In a swimming hole; in the barn, out in the woods, outside a barn dance – you get it all, as well as the softer, gentler sex. Yet all have underlying feelings which makes them extra delicious and gives you those lovely butterflies in your tummy.
If you’ve ever dreamed of living on your own, remote ranch, of having a homestead or just of roping your own sexy, rugged (and grumpy) cowboy, you’ll want to stop what you’re doing right now and get to reading this book. Once again, Ms Moreland manages to take my romantic fantasies, write them down and make them even more than I could ever imagine. It’s then that Maxine and John bring them to life and act out the story like I’m watching a movie. And if you’re a sucker for an epilogue (gimme!) and like the whole marriage, kids and happily ever after thing played out to you – you are going to lose your shit over the ending of this story. I bloody loved it and I just can’t wait to read anything and everything that Melanie Moreland releases next. So long as Maxine and John narrate it! 5 stars from me.
* I received this book in exchange for my honest review *
New York Times/USA Today bestselling author Melanie Moreland, lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of twenty-seven-plus years and their rescue cat, Amber. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.
While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.
Melanie loves stories, especially paired with a good wine, and enjoys skydiving (free falling over a fleck of dust) extreme snowboarding (falling down stairs) and piloting her own helicopter (tripping over her own feet.) She’s learned happily ever afters, even bumpy ones, are all in how you tell the story.