by Katie Ruggle
Narrator: Vanessa Daniels
Published by Tantor Audio on September 25, 2018
Genres: Adult Contemporary Romance
Length: 11 hours and 3 minutes
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble
In the heart of the Rockies
In the arms of a cowboy
One white Christmas can change everything.
When firefighter and single dad Steve Springfield moved his four kids to a Colorado Christmas tree ranch, he intended for it to be a safe haven. But he never expected danger to follow them to his childhood home...
Or that he would come face-to-face with the one girl he could never forget.
Folk artist Camille Brandt lives a quiet life. As the town's resident eccentric, she's used to being lonely--until Steve freaking Springfield changes everything. Brave and kind, he's always had a piece of her heart, and it doesn't take long before she's in danger of falling for him and his rambunctious kids. But as mysterious fires break out across the sleepy Colorado town, Steve and Camille will have to fight if they want their happy family to survive until Christmas...
Rocky Mountain Cowboy Christmas is a sweet and heartwarming second chance romance. This is a fun way to get in the holiday spirit!
What did I like?
- I loved the main characters Camille and Steve. Camille is socially awkward and a semi-hermit, used to spending her time creating her art pieces, a fulfilling but lonely life. Steve “freaking” Springfield is a single father and the high school crush Camille never imagined coming back into her life. His return to town rattles both of their lonely lives and sparks immediately fly. It was fun to see Camille and Steve in awkward situations, both acting like unseasoned daters. It was a nice change from a dominant or confident male character pursuing a damsel in distress. Camille and Steve are relatable characters whom anyone would love to be friends with.
- Steve’s kids are a vital part of this story and I thought their characters were well developed. Stories with kids have been a hit or miss for me, with some kids being unlikeable. But I thought the author did a great job of developing the kids with teenage angst and realistic drama. Instead of taking the spotlight away from Camille and Steve, the kids supported their story and drew out the best in each of the main characters. Since Camille has been socially awkward, it was heartwarming to see her relate to the kids, especially to Micah, Steve’s socially awkward son.
- The story is a mix of romance, suspense and action. This is set at Christmas time at Steve’s family Christmas tree ranch. I thought this story was refreshing with bringing the main characters together with holiday charm. The mysterious fires come to a surprising end and I was taken off guard of who was causing it. The author kept me guessing until the end.
What didn’t I like?
- The pace of the story was slow. A lot of time is spent in Camille’s inner monologue, which became repetitive. I would have liked to have equal time spent on the romance and the mysterious fires, to keep the story moving and add more excitement and suspense.
- This is the second book I’ve listened to narrator Vanessa Daniels and I thought her performance was ok. I’m still not impressed with her narration. I have gotten spoiled and expect a narration with different voices for all the characters, so I was disappointed with this narrator. She did a great performance for Camille but the other characters felt flat and too similar.
Rocky Mountain Cowboy Christmas is a promising introduction to Katie Ruggle’s Rocky Mountain Cowboys series. Steve’s character is from the Rocky Mountain K-9 Unit series, which I haven’t read and found not necessary to read before diving in to this book. I’m curious to read more in this series, although the author has not hinted what the next book will be. They will probably be about Steve’s brothers and I hope Camille will make a cameo appearance.
Thank you to Tantor Audio for providing an audiobook copy in exchange for an honest review.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2018 Audiobook Challenge
- 2018 New Release Challenge