**spoiler alert** Of all the stories Diana Palmer has written and labeled as "Long, Tall Texans" stories, the most compelling and most poignant happen...more**spoiler alert** Of all the stories Diana Palmer has written and labeled as "Long, Tall Texans" stories, the most compelling and most poignant happens to be about a hero who was bred, born, and raised in Wyoming.
But what sets Sutton's Way apart from countless others of the sweet, contemporary romance genre is that both the hero and heroine are virgins.
Abused as a child, she ran away to find fame and fortune as a musician and singer, only to retreat to the mountains to recuperate from a concert tragedy. She's afraid of men.
He was a shy, awkward youth, persuaded to rescue a pregnant girl, but their marriage was never consummated. After the birth of her son, she was killed in an accident with the child's father, leaving our hero with a little boy who is not his own. He's now 30+ and all he knows about sex is what he's read in books.
The story is well-told and so unique, it stands out in one's memory long after the reading is done.(less)
**spoiler alert** I love/hate this book. I love this book because it evokes an emotional response. Hell, I'm in tears by page 16 and it doesn't let up...more**spoiler alert** I love/hate this book. I love this book because it evokes an emotional response. Hell, I'm in tears by page 16 and it doesn't let up (and I don't cry easily over romance novels). I hate this book because I'm in tears by page 16. I must be one sick puppy because as depressing as many of the passages are, I can't help but read and reread Regan's Pride again and again.
Ted Regan is not a lovable hero. Bitter toward his beloved cousin's widow, he is verbally abusive to her. Ignorant of the physical and verbal abuse she suffered from his cousin, his cruelty toward her is really difficult to read through.
So why read it? Because of all Diana Palmer's books, Regan's Pride offers great depth and emotional honesty in it's scant 186 pages. There is a happy ending, though Ted never becomes a sympathetic hero. At times, it is difficult to understand how Coreen could continue to love and want him despite his quick temper and cruel words. Perhaps the underlying message is that we are powerless to choose whom we will love and in the end, love does succeed in taming the beast.
Regan's Pride is a Long, Tall Texan story that shouldn't be missed. It's definitely on my keeper shelf and I'll gladly use up a box of tissues every time I read it. (less)
**spoiler alert** Michael's Gift is the first in Marilyn Pappano's 6-book Southern Knights series.
Set in New Orleans, Michael is a cop with a paranor...more**spoiler alert** Michael's Gift is the first in Marilyn Pappano's 6-book Southern Knights series.
Set in New Orleans, Michael is a cop with a paranormal 'gift' and a whole lot of ghosts and guilt. He isn't dark and brooding, he's dead man walking. Pappano does an excellent job of fleshing out this character and his motivations. Our heroine, Valery, comes to him, first in dreams and visions, then because she is telepathically drawn to him.
Valery is also an emotional zombie. Michael was a preacher's kid but has lost faith in God, believing in nothing except his closest friends while Valery has lost faith in people and trusts no one except God. Despite the religious overtones here, this is not a "Christian" story. It is simply a dichotomy of two souls who are both empty and in need of healing.
But Valery is also in need of protection. Having witnessed a murder, the bad guys want her dead. Having overheard some of their conversation, she believes the 'good guys' want her dead, too.
The only thing lacking is the detail in the denoument. The fault most likely is that of the limitation in length rather than the storyteller's skill. To describe a bullets-flying battle by simply saying 'all hell broke loose' is unacceptable and that brought an otherwise excellent story down a notch or two.
Pappano does a good job introducing readers to secondary characters and offers sufficient detail to interest readers in their stories, which are told in subsequent books in the series. I am looking forward to reading Regarding Remy, the second book in the Southern Knights series. (less)
Classic Diana Palmer... surly, gruff, older man alternately pursues and pushes away sweet, innocent, virginal heroine. But what's not to love about th...moreClassic Diana Palmer... surly, gruff, older man alternately pursues and pushes away sweet, innocent, virginal heroine. But what's not to love about that?(less)