REVIEW: Cowboy Fever by Joanne KennedyTuesday, May 3, 2011 1:00
I’m glad I decided to give Joanne Kennedy a second-chance read. While I enjoyed some things about Cowboy Trouble, the first book of hers I read, there were others that didn’t work for me. But this time around, she’s given readers a nice story through and through with only slight blips. There’s more emotion in this book that gives the hero and heroine more depth.
Jodie Brand (not Bryce as it says in the summary), in a fit of guilt, has come home to help her mother in her western boutique. She’s left her rodeo queen days behind her and is also going to open a therapy riding clinic for handicapped children. Of course, as soon as she hits town, gossip begins and then she comes face to face with Teague Treadwell, her old crush from their school days. Teague was the town bad boy, and though he’s tried to gussy himself up, he still exudes that badass aura that the women go for, even Jodie herself. Surviving the first meeting with him, she goes on her way to get things up and running at the old homestead. All with Teague on her mind.
He’s tried so hard to live past his reputation he inherited from his father, but folks still look at Teague as the boy with a temper from the wrong side of the tracks. He’s taken care of Troy, his older Down’s Syndrome brother, since their parents died, he’s built them a new home to leave behind the memories of beatings that occurred in their mobile home, all with eye toward bettering himself for the day Jodie returns. When she finally blows into his life again, he hopes she sees the new man he is now and that that will make a difference to her to perhaps pick up where they left off years before. But when he remembers how he pushed her away, Teague isn’t so sure Jodie has forgiven him, even though his rebuff was for her own good.
I like both of these characters. They were friends before their one-night stand years ago, and I like that their new relationship is not terribly awkward when they’re together now. It doesn’t take long before they hit the sheets again, and this time it’s a man and a woman loving each other instead of the boy and girl they used to be. Which also means they do talk things out instead of letting things come between them. Well, most things anyway. There’s the usual jealousy issues that each think about but don’t voice until it’s nearly too late. It’s Troy who is the common denominator and brings them together. And I love Troy. He’s as sweet as can be, a man in a child’s body wanting to be on his own, do things on his own without little brother hovering anymore. He’s a wonderful character.
One thing I don’t like is how Jodie doubts Teague throughout the book. When she finally tells him she does trust him and believes in him, she’s known that all along but lets fear and doubt rule her, even after they make love a few times. This happens too often in romance and I’m just tired of reading it. I realize we want our heroes to be kind and generous whenever possible, but Teague takes this to a new level when it comes to Courtney, a newcomer to town who’s decided she wants the cowboy and will have him. The woman is a nuisance and I wanted to shake the man when he’s nice to her one too many times after her many shenanigans. The mystery surrounding a neighbor’s death gets a little convoluted, but for all intents and purposes, it works despite all the elements involved.
Overall, characters and storyline are much better than the previous book. We’re not thrown off on a tangent, given ideas that don’t work with the entire story. And at first I thought the books are related in some way since the covers are similar, including One Fine Cowboy, the release just before CF. Usually when you see covers this similar, it’s a series or trilogy or they’re at least in some way related, but these books are all different characters with no relation whatsoever. I’m a series hound, so I would have picked them up based on the covers alone and would have been sorely disappointed. Yeah, okay, read the back cover. I know, but sometimes you get a tad excited when discovering a new series, and considering these are cowboys, I know I would have purchased and asked questions later.
But all that aside, with this book Ms. Kennedy has upped my entertainment level and I’ll definitely try more of her future reads.
Miss Rodeo Wyoming Jodie Bryce is back from the big city to find that her childhood friend Teague Treadwell’s rugged cowboy charm never looked better. But Teague thinks Jodie’s success lifted her out of his reach, and now he’s got to shed his bad boy image to be worthy of the girl next door.
No excerpt available.