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Tougher in Texas

(Texas Rodeo #3)

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  504 ratings  ·  82 reviews
He's got five rules
And she's aiming to break them all

Rodeo producer Cole Jacobs has his hands full running Jacobs Livestock. He can't afford to lose a single cowboy, so when cousin Violet offers to send along a more-than-capable replacement, he's got no choice but to accept. He expects a grizzled Texas good ol' boy.

He gets Shawnee Pickett.

Wild and outspoken, ruthlessly se
Mass Market Paperback, 398 pages
Published August 1st 2017 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
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Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

So, I am a bookcover whore. If a book has a bad cover I’m very unlikely to pick it up. I know you can’t judge and all that. Being the visual person I am, the cover really makes or breaks a lot of purchases for me! I was drawn to Kari Lynn Dell because of Sourcebooks awesome covers. JUST LOOK AT THEM (collective sigh) I follow a very popular Western Romance author, and so I’m always watching the Western Romance books in the market, however I don’t actually read very many outside of my go to favor
Anna's Herding Cats

Reviewed for herding cats & burning soup. (live 8/1)

Kari Lynn Dell has won a place on my cowboy loving bookshelf. Damn, but, she writes a delicious cowboy and a damn feisty cowgirl. Tougher in Texas...blew me away.

Basically, Cole runs a rodeo. And has just fired yet another pickup man. Something he kinda needs to keep his rodeos running. And so his business partner makes good on her threat and sends a certain replacement he can't fire and who happens to be his worst
Tonya Lucas
Sep 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Books are transforming, some are an escape from everyday life, some you fall in love with for their humorous banter, while others weave themselves into your very soul and change you, forever.
Kari Lynn Dell's Tougher In Texas became all three for me. Simply an amazing book which truly grounded me.
I just can't begin to sing enough praise for this book about taking chances, never giving up, and opening your heart to others, no matter how difficult it truly is for certain individuals. There are so
Caitlyn Lynch
Aug 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this book a couple of weeks ago and I've been struggling ever since to find the words to express just how UTTERLY FANTASTIC it is.

I'll start off by saying that I know absolutely nothing about rodeo. Fortunately, Kari Lynn Dell knows LOTS about rodeo (her bio says she is 'a third generation ranch-raised cowgirl, horse trainer, and rodeo competitor-as well as the 2013 Canadian Senior Pro Rodeo Association Breakaway Roping Champion') and she breaks everything down gently and simply for those
Isha Coleman
Jul 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kari Lynn Dell has quickly carved out a place for herself on my bookshelf. Her ability to create stories that are heartbreakingly realistic and deliver them with power and grace is refreshing. Her stories help you breathe through the pain with laughter and an optimistic point of view. Tougher in Texas blends courageous with outrageous to put a smile on our face as we hand over a tiny piece of our hearts. We laugh, we learn, we enjoy. Well done, Ms. Dell.
Blodeuedd Finland
Cowboys! And this one takes place on the rodeo circuit. Can't say I have ever read one like that.

I liked Cole. He seemed to practical with his lists and doing things his way. Very logical, and then we are told he has aspergers, well that does explain it. The thing he said about hugs, *nods* I felt she did it well. And he so wants a family...and then he meets Shawnee.

Oh my, Shawnee. Loud, opinionated and a total mess. She has some secrets and fears and she might act all tough and independent, but
Bambi Unbridled

In short, this is a special book. Anna over at Herding Cats and Burning Soup is always gushing about her cowboys, and that made me realize that I haven't read many cowboy books. So I set out to rectify that situation, and I decided to start with a new-to-me author, Kari Lynn Dell. I think I am glad I started with this story because I definitely want to pick up her other books now. While there was some character crossover from earlier books, I didn't feel lost or confused with the story. So I th
Stephanie Jenkins Ortiz Cerrillo
Cole Jacobs is officially running his own crew for Jacob's Livestock on the rodeo circuit for the first time and without Violet as pick-up man and overall Miss Handles Everything that comes up or falls apart. Violet offers to use her connections and experience to replace herself and how can Cole refuse that offer. Violet always comes through with the best man for the job. Cole can't afford for anything to go wrong. He wants to prove to himself and to the Jacobs family that he can do this job and ...more
Linda Broday
Sep 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'll never look at rodeos the same way again. There's so much more going on that I ever knew about. I just love Cole and Shawnee. They're a perfect match. Cole is a loner with Asperberger's Syndrome and has trouble communicating with and being around people. Shawnee is a survivor and has built a thick wall of toughness around her. Her wit and sarcasm is a shield she hides behind. Only she sees how Cole struggles and softens her persona for him. He's six feet five and pure muscle that's developed ...more
Another winner. Cole Jacobs is the autistic cousin of Violet, the two of them have worked together at rodeos but now she's pregnant he's been forced to work with a series of substitutes. After he runs off yet another cowboy Violet invokes her worst punishment - Shawnee Pickett.

Shawnee is a straight-talking roper, one of her favourite things is winding up Cole with his lists and his regimented view of life, but weeks on the road working cheek by jowl shows both of the them that there is more to t
May 18, 2017 rated it liked it
3 Texas rodeo stars for TOUGHER IN TEXAS.

Shawnee Pickett is like a hurricane to Cole Jacobs. She flies into his rodeo, all big hair and tight jeans and he has no clue what to do with her. Shawnee has known Cole since they were young, and while she'd most definitely be down with a little bedroom boogie with the big sexy cowboy, she knows that Cole is a man looking for a wife and a family, and she is just not on that path. Then Cole kisses her, and she likes it.

Cole's not good with women…his aut
Stefani Sloma
Sep 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you know me, you know I don't read a lot of romance. But Kari is one of my authors, and I've heard from several people how good this book is, so I decided to check it out.

Honestly, this is one of the best books I've ever read. Not one of the best romance books I've ever read. One of the BEST books I've ever read. Hands down.

It's absolutely incredible. From the characters to the sizzle to the banter to the authentic way Kari writes about rodeo. I could not put it down.

HIGHLY recommended.
Dec 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you only read one cowboy romance this year make it this one! Authentic characters and setting. And even a cool dog with opinions. A friend who is an NYT bestselling author told me you can always tell a great romance when you want to be BFF with the heroine and have hot sex with the hero. This book is a bingo. Loved it.
Isha Coleman
Jul 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Tougher in Texas (Texas Rodeo) by Kari Lynn Dell  
Kari Lynn Dell has quickly carved out a place for herself on my bookshelf. Her ability to create stories that are heartbreakingly realistic and deliver them with power and grace is refreshing. Her stories help you breathe through the pain with laughter and an optimistic point of view. Tougher in Texas blends courageous with outrageous to put a smile on our face as we hand over a tiny piece of our hearts. We laugh, we learn, we enjoy. Well done,
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Once again I was drawn into the life of rodeo. Kari Lynn Dell writes what she knows best, and that is rodeo and love. You are drawn into the story, and you don't want to leave. Some of my questions were answered, and I was left wanting more. Her characters become very real, and the atmosphere that surrounds you becomes real. You can feel, hear, the animals, smell the smells that come with a rodeo.
I love this series and can't wait to read more.
Roni Denholtz
Jul 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was fast paced, with complicated characters I grew to love. The plot had plenty of twists and turns and I loved the rodeo background that's such an intrinsic part of the story. ...more
Christa Schönmann Abbühl
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 31, 2020 rated it did not like it
nope.. nah..
Sep 14, 2017 rated it liked it
This book started out much stronger than it finished. I was very intrigued to see where the author would go with an autistic cowboy and female cancer-survivor rodeo worker. Both were very original character ideas. I think it was portrayed pretty well in the beginning but then the characters became like every other character I've read in a romance novel. And this is one of those stories where you have to read the rest in the series to get an idea of who everyone is.... which I have no intention o ...more
Amanda Usen
Mar 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: contemporary
I think this was my favorite book of the series so far! I loved how the hero of book one helped Cole learn he was autistic. The way the author pulls the extended family together and weaves storylines through the series is really fun. The hero is a big guy, like super tall, broad, all that. YUM. The heroine is not thin, which was great, especially when we learn why she never wants to be. She's strong, capable, kick ass, all THAT. Most of all I enjoyed going on the ride as these two grappled with ...more
Marsha Keeper Bookshelf
Reviewed at Keeper Bookshelf

Tougher in Texas is a unique romance that will capture your attention and your emotions very quickly. I doubt this story will let go of your heart until the very ending… and even then it might linger on a bit.

Cole and Shawnee have known each other for years. They are about as opposite in personality and routines as two people could possibly get. Cole needs routine, he’s methodical, precise and his routines, schedules calm him, focus him – they are as necessary as bre
patrick Lorelli
Aug 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance-cowboys
Cole Jacobs is a rodeo producer and has a certain way of doing things his way, and he does not like change. This all falls apart for him when his cousin cannot make the trip for the rodeo season because she is pregnant. She calls him after he fires the third person and says really it’s not his fault he told the guy what he had to do and he did not do it. Of course he does not think he should have to tell someone what they have to do and then on top of that this person used a prod on a bull that ...more
Sep 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Slow burning 'enemies' to lovers

I know nothing about rodeo (and to be honest, I still know nothing about rodeo though the author does her best to make it understandable). What I know are books, and this one is a good ‘un.

I loved the main characters. Cole has a big heart, an inability to express himself, and a stubborn will that is akin to a bolder rolling downhill. His autism has made relationships difficult, though we are more told than shown this.

Shawnee is feisty and smart, a cancer survivor
Apr 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a pretty solid read and definitely the first I've read where the lead character was autistic, so that made this a pretty unique book and one that had me falling in love with Cole.

We've met Cole in previous books and knew that he was diagnosed as autistic when Joe recognized the signs. But he didn't find this out until recently, so he's gone his whole life until this point just thinking he was different and had something wrong. He's had such a sad story up until this point, having lost h
Becky Burciaga
May 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Even after having finished this book, I am still in awe of how "real" the characters were. This is one gifted and talented who all but transported me into the world of rodeo. The rodeo play by play was heart bounding and gripping, told in such a fashion that I could've been right there as a participant, riding right along side Cole and Shawnee. As heart pounding action goes, I'd give this author exceptionally high marks for believability.

I have yet to encounter characters, so belie
Jul 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Kari Lynn Dell has done it again with Tougher In Texas. Shawnee Picket is prickly, sassy, and determined to live life on her own terms. She keeps her heart locked up tighter then a drum determined to never open her heart to anyone. Never pitting down roots, not making lasting friendships are falling in love. Cole Jacobs likes his routine, things done a certain way every single time. Predictable and safe. He would like to have a wife and family but is not really sure now to do it. Shawnee Picket ...more
Carol Risez
Aug 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great read. Ms. Dell really fleshes out her characters. This #3 in the Texas Rodeo Series and deals with mild autism, and the people dealing with it in one way or another. The rodeo setting is great, too. I'm a displaced country girl (always wanted to live "way out there") who grew up in San Antonio and am still here. :-{ I spent lotsa' time on relatives farms as a kid and loved it. Rode calves around, chased chickens and gathered eggs, cleaned kerosene lanterns in the morning, used an outhouse, ...more
Round up to the 3.5 stars. Add another star if you like this series and/or cowboy romances in general.

Okay, so I guess I'm not exactly the cowboy romance type, but this was for my Modern Mrs. Darcy challenge as a 2018 award nominee.

I feel like I should have started at the first book in the series - there were lots of characters that I wasn't terribly familiar with, but it generally wasn't too much trouble. I guess the previous two books may have covered them more. I'm not a rodeo convert now,
Glenda Kinard
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
WoW just WoW and WoW again!!!! I am loving this series of books!! I have learned so much on Rodeo I never knew before especially the behind the scenes part. It has been a fascinating to learn all this info plus get the wonderful wonderful story with it. Shawnee and Cole are two totally polar opposites but yet the fireworks just couldn’t stop sparking until it turned into a raging flame. They both have their own load of baggage of past hurts. I loved seeing how Kari Lynn Dell brought these two to ...more
Alovea4u /Shirley Miller
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Kari was a new author's book I was given this one first, I have an OCD problem If someone gives me a book I have to look up the author and make sure it is a stand alone or if it is a series I have to read the first one FIRST!!!!
The fact that it is without a doubt refreshing new read for me. I read the first 3 in less than 4 weeks and had to wait for the 4th one because it was another 2 weeks before release date!!! I devoured it in less than 4 days!!! <3 <3
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Kari Lynn Dell is a native of north central Montana, a third generation ranch-raised cowgirl, horse trainer and rodeo competitor, most recently the 2017 Canadian Senior Pro Rodeo Breakaway Roping season champion. She attended her first rodeo at two weeks old and has existed in a state of horse-induced poverty ever since. She currently resides on the family ranch on the Blackfeet Reservation, loite ...more

Other books in the series

Texas Rodeo (6 books)
  • Reckless in Texas (Texas Rodeo #1)
  • Tangled in Texas (Texas Rodeo #2)
  • Fearless in Texas (Texas Rodeo #4)
  • Mistletoe in Texas (Texas Rodeo #5)
  • Relentless in Texas (Texas Rodeo #6)

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