Hold onto your Stetsons ladies and gentlemen! We finally get to see the Hill family daughter get a romance story of her very own.
What’s it About?
Carter Hill walked away from a perfectly fine life and relationship…all for a career she’s chased since she was fourteen. Years and a PhD later, she loves her job as a water rights consultant. At the same time, now that all her brothers are happily married, she’s lonely and wanting more. But the only man in her life is Logan – super serious, no sense of humor, and friend-zoned. Or is he? Perhaps a sexy, no-strings affair with a man more driven than she is could help her move on.
Logan Cartez doesn’t date, do relationships, or worry about commitment. He’s married to his job – making sure what destroyed his family ranch and their legacy doesn’t happen to others. When Carter propositions him, what began as a passionate and unforgettable night soon develops into more. Logan finds himself doing things he swore he never would, and the feisty, brilliant, blue-eyed rancher’s daughter has him thinking about so much more than work.
This series is an absolute delight! Up until this point we’ve only seen the romances of the Hill family boys, most of whom are sexy as sin alpha cowboys. Well, after four full-length novels featuring the Hill men, we’re finally privy to the one Hill daughter falling in love with a dashing lawyer. It feels like I’ve been waiting for Carter’s story since book one, and I’m thrilled to say it doesn’t disappoint. I might even go so far as to say that Carter and Logan’s romance is my favorite of the series! It’s definitely a tough call to make, but these two draw you in from opening bell and simply don’t let go. The fact we also get to see glimpses of Carter’s protective brothers, not to mention their entertaining wives, who we’ve come to know and love throughout the series is a glorious bonus.
Rebound, or Real Love?
At the start of the novel we see that Carter and Logan have a professional, yet friendly relationship. She offers water expertise to many of his law cases, and the two have grown to become friends over time. However, even though they’ve always been a bit more than co-workers, they’ve never acted on what they assume to be a one-sided attraction to the other. That all changes though after Carter learns her ex-fiancé, Brian, is engaged, and she thinks going for a roll in someone else’s bed might take her mind off things. When Logan learns that Carter is considering a potential one-night stand with a complete stranger, he sees red, and steps in to act as a source of sexual release.
What follows is a steamy and amusing romance, with both Logan and Carter constantly debating whether they should upgrade this fling between them to a full-blown relationship. A feature to the evolution of their attraction that I found particularly fascinating was that we never really entertained the idea that Logan was simply a rebound from Carter’s previous relationship with her fiancé. While we can’t deny that her ex becoming engaged was sort of the impetus for them ultimately coming together in the physical sense, we also realize that they’ve always been close, and more importantly that there’s always been something simmering just under the surface between them. They’ve both been daydreaming for more, and in a way her ex’s engagement is the slap in the face they both need to finally act on it.
The Role of the Ex
Throughout the novel we see a primary focus not only on Logan and Carter’s burgeoning relationship, but also a side story involving a water right’s case the two are working on. It helps highlight the dedication they both have to their respective careers, as well as how their jobs help bring them together. However, another feature of the plot which I found especially intriguing was the role of both Logan and Carter’s exes to their current relationship. When the two first met, Carter was still engaged to her ex, meaning that the foundation for Carter and Logan’s relationship was built as a friendship surrounding their work, rather than one which was romantic in nature.
As for Logan, his ex-fiancée, Angela, left him because he seemed to pay more attention to his work than he ever did to her. It’s only now that Angela has broken up with somebody else that she starts to sniff around Logan again. We’ve already discussed how the engagement of Carter’s ex was sort of the impetus to them taking their relationship to the next stage from friendship to horizontal mambo partners. We also see how Logan’s previous breakup with his ex makes him hesitant to move things even further along with Carter from having a casual sexual relationship to an actual boyfriend/girlfriend relationship. After all, his work will always be important to him, and he fears that eventually he’ll fail to give Carter the attention that his previous fiancée always demanded of him. And this brings me to what I loved most about Carter and Logan’s connection.
While they compromise in certain aspects of their relationship, we see that they never really have to give up a part of their lives that means a lot to them, and that would be their careers. Whereas Angela felt pushed aside, we see that Carter and Logan can come together in their work. Whereas Angela pouted and sulked on the sidelines, Carter isn’t afraid to ask for Logan’s attention when it matters most, or force him to take a break and have some fun when he needs it. Simply put, they fit together. They are each other’s person in a way that their exes could never be. Brian was pushing Carter to give up her career in Austin, and Angela complained that Logan’s work resulted in them spending too much time apart. And yet, when it comes to Logan and Carter, they can still have fun and play together, not to mention have sexy fun times together, yet still devote themselves to the careers that really mean a lot to them.
*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*
Series: Hills of Texas, book 5. Quite possibly my favorite couple of the whole series.
Final Impressions: A delightfully romantic, funny, and also emotional read from start to finish. Carter’s parents sort of serve as the guiding light of wisdom in their relationship, and her father especially may have given the most enlightening advice of any romance character ever when Carter and Logan found themselves on the verge of breaking up after an argument. “Don’t assign blame…Rarely is it one person’s fault. Usually, it’s a little bit of both.” It might seem like simple advice, but my goodness when it comes to Romancelandia I feel like this needs to be cross-stitched into a pillow! I realize we’re all out of Hill children to feature, but I sincerely hope this series continues, maybe with a time jump into the future so we can focus on all of their children finding love!
Smut Level: This read is a perfect blend of clean with a bit of steam. While some scenes can get a bit descriptive and passionate, we also see several scenes end with a quick fade to black, or others where we come in after the good stuff has already taken place. I must say the only time this disappointed me was when we missed the details of Carter and Logan having phone sex! Would have loved to hear Mr. Proper Lawyer utilizing his dirty talking skills.
Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $3.99 Kindle Price. Tule Publishing.