The Marine's E-Mail Order Bride
The Heroes of Chance Creek, #3
Genre: Contemporary Military/Western Romance
Publisher: One Acre Press
Date of Publication: January 6, 2015
Number of pages: 212
If Gunnery Sergeant Zane Hall wants to save his family’s ranch, he’ll need to fix up the buildings, stock the spread with cattle—and find a wife. The first two are easy with the help of his brothers, but getting hitched is proving more difficult. When he meets mountaineer Kenna North through an online ad, she seems like the perfect fit—at least in her e-mails. She wants the same thing he does: a temporary marriage to secure an inheritance. But when Zane meets Kenna, she’s nothing like he expects, and Zane finds himself changing his priorities, fast.
If Storm Willow wants to save her family’s seaside cottage, she’ll have to keep her boss happy—which means taking Kenna’s place and marrying Zane when Kenna is detained out of the country. As long as Storm acts her part, no one will know that she’s an imposter. But when she falls for the handsome Marine, Storm begins to wonder if holding onto the cottage is worth giving up on love.
Can a fake marriage lead to real happiness? Or is disaster just a heartbeat away?
“Kenna’s paying me thirty grand.” She waited a beat. Just like she’d thought, the sum silenced her mother.
“For pretending to be her for six weeks?”
“That’s right. She’ll get her inheritance, Zane will get his. They’ll divorce in April with no one the wiser.”
She could almost see the cogs turn in her mother’s brain. “I guess if no one is being hurt by the deception…”
“No one’s going to get hurt.” Even as she said it she knew it for the lie it was. She was going to get hurt—bad. When the time came to split from Zane, she didn’t know what she’d do.
“Well… do what you think is best.”
Storm rolled her eyes at her mother’s attempt to remove herself from any blame. “I will.” She couldn’t keep the edge from her voice. She was doing this to save Cheyenne’s house, after all. Her mother could have sold it at any time and they’d all be far better off than they were right now. Zane wouldn’t think she was Kenna, for one thing.
Of course she’d never have met him, either.
“Keep me posted. And Storm—”
“Don’t fall for this man, whoever he is. Remember it’s a fake, and remember you don’t belong in Montana. We need you back home with us when this is all over.”
“Got it, Mom. ‘Bye.” She hung up, unable to stay on the line any longer. She didn’t want to think about leaving Chance Creek. In six short weeks this would all be over and she’d take a plane back to California, leaving Zane behind forever. Of course Cheyenne wanted her to come home. She was a built in baby-sitter, wage-earner and housekeeper all in one. What about what she wanted, though? When would she ever stop being Cheyenne’s daughter or Kenna’s assistant and start her life as an independent woman? A woman free to marry a man like Zane?
She thought of the balance remaining on the cottage’s mortgage.
Maybe in another twenty years.
I adored the first two books in this series. I gave each one a 5 star rating. The next book, a Christmas themed one, most recently renumbered as #2.5 - featured friends of Mason and Regan (book 1) meeting up at Chance Hall for Christmas. It was an enjoyable read, but didn't invoke the response of the first 2. This book gets us back on track with Zack's (book 2) twin, Zane the marine.
I had a hard time getting into this book. Probably because Storm's character hit a bit close to home for me. It made the read a bit uncomfortable and I couldn't totally immerse myself in the beginning of the story. Looking back, while Storm is lying and pretending to be her boss, the story has this ever so slight jaggedness, like music slightly off key. Once the truth comes out and consequences begin to be dealt with, the tone of the writing smooths out and you can literally feel the relief.
As this marks the 3/4 mark for the brother's stories, there is some major movement in the over all story arc and while the twists weren't shocking, they were nicely done. I think I know where the last book in the series is heading, but until The Airman's Email Order Bride comes out, I won't know for sure. I am giving this one 4 stars and hope that the conclusion ends on a bang.
Thanks to the author for the opportunity to review the book.
Cora will be awarding a $50 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Cora Seton loves cowboys, country life, gardening, bike-riding, and lazing around with a good book. Mother of four, wife to a computer programmer/eco-farmer, she ditched her California lifestyle nine years ago and moved to a remote logging town in northwestern British Columbia.
Like the characters in her novels, Cora enjoys old-fashioned pursuits and modern technology, spending mornings transforming a neglected one-acre lot into a paradise of orchards, berry bushes and market gardens, and afternoons writing the latest Chance Creek romance novel. Visit www.coraseton.com to read about new releases, contests and other cool events!
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