Friday, May 17, 2013

A Cowboy's Pride - Pamela Britton (HAR #1453 - June 2013)

"Broken Cowboy..."
Trent Anderson's rodeo days are over. Thanks to the car accident that killed his best friend, he will never get on a horse again. But physical therapist Alana McClintock isn't listening to his protestations. She just won't let up--getting under his skin, waking parts of him he thought would sleep forever. He can sense she feels something for him, too.

Alana knows Trent's injuries aren't as extensive as he thinks, and with some hard work she's convinced he will ride again. But the problem is convincing Trent. As Alana works with the wounded cowboy, she is drawn to him in a way that is anything but professional. She's determined to help him, though--even if it means he'll walk away from her.

I really liked this book.  Both Trent and Alana felt very real to me.  Trent is angry.  His best friend was killed in the accident that injured him and ended his rodeo career.  He has made enough progress to take care of himself but will never get on a horse again.  He really doesn't want to be on this ranch for the disabled, but his mother guilted him into it.  He is in a foul mood and refuses to cooperate with Alana.  He really hates her slave driver attitude but part of him is really attracted to her.  I loved the way that Alana compared his attitude to a little boy at the beginning.  Their interactions were pretty heated as he tried his best to refuse her treatment.  His change in attitude was gradual until one of her more radical moves, then he started to believe in her.  He also had some survivor's guilt that he had to work through before he was really able to open himself up to the future he wanted.

Alana had lost her fiance in the same accident where her almost niece had lost her mother and been badly injured.  Alana used her skills to help Rana recover and walk again, and assisted Rana's father on the handicapped friendly ranch as the resident physical therapist.  When Trent arrived something about him really got to her.  I loved her determination that she would get him back on his feet.  She didn't let him get away with anything and did a great job getting him to do what she wanted.  If a straight challenge didn't work she threatened to call his mother.  I really enjoyed seeing her challenge him time and again.  She also began to see that he wasn't the rude grump that was her first impression of him and that the man inside was quite different.  She starts to have feelings for him that don't fit with her professional ethics.  She also had her own issues and fears to deal with.  She was comfortable and happy on the ranch and didn't want to leave Rana who she felt still needed her.  She also hesitated to get involved with another rodeo man and have to deal with the stresses of the separations involved. 

I loved the theme of not giving up.  Alana refused to give up on getting Trent on his feet again, and refused to let him give up.  Trent refused to give up on getting Alana to admit her love and enter into a real relationship with him.  I really liked the way that they finally worked things out.

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