Gabe and Emma’s first meeting revolves around his blatant flirting and her total rejection of his efforts. After all, her heart and her future plans centre around Gabe’s cousin Cam, and an old friend of her family. Although he grew up on a ranch, Gabe’s passion is his writing, not working on the family ranch like his parents and family want him to do. He has come to Granite Junction to stay with his cousin and work on another book, as well as help around the ranch. The beautiful and feisty Emma could well be an unexpected bonus if she were not so hung up on his cousin. Emma, a school counsellor and sometimes waitress, is beyond hurt to learn that Cam is selling his ranch and leaving town. She decides to make a last ditch attempt to capture his heart by sparking his jealousy while she dates someone else....and Gabe is that someone else. At first he is more than willing to use his charm and flirting skills to spend some time with the beautiful and feisty spitfire named Emma, at least for the few months he will be in town.Then most unexpectedly, he finds himself jealous of Emma’s feelings for his cousin, and he starts to feel that once again he is not enough for someone important to him. He redoubles his efforts to make Emma want to be with him instead of his cousin, and they soon indulge in stolen kisses, then very passionate encounters. Gabe finds himself being warned by her family and friends not to hurt Emma, but he becomes aware that he is in a position to get hurt too. Though everyone else can see the sparks and raw emotion between them, neither will admit it to themselves, let alone each other. Hurt feelings, jealousy and emotional blunders put them at odds with each other and sends Gabe fleeing town, leaving them both heartbroken. This story does have it’s happily ever after, but you will need to read the book to see how Gabe and Emma achieve it.
I loved the strong, vibrant characters in this book. Charming, sweet-talking Gabe with his unexpected hidden insecurities and vulnerability, who had the strength to forge his own path despite family expectations. Beautiful, resilient and warm-hearted Emma who uses organization and planning as a tool to overcome her own insecurities and control issues. Two people who unexpectedly find love and have to fight to keep it. I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.