Lost Rider – Harper Sloan

Hang on to your Stetsons this spring, because you’re in for one wild ride! Lost Rider is the first Western romance in New York Times and USA TODAY indie bestselling author Harper Sloan’s Coming Home series, where an injured rodeo star encounters an old flame…but will she be just what he needs to get back in the saddle?

Maverick Austin Davis is forced to return home after a ten-year career as a rodeo star. After one too many head injuries, he’s off the circuit and in the horse farming business, something he’s never taken much of a shine to, but now that it’s his late father’s legacy, familial duty calls. How will Maverick find his way after the only dream he ever had for himself is over?

Enter Leighton Elizabeth James, an ugly duckling turned beauty from Maverick’s childhood—his younger sister’s best friend, to be exact, and someone whose heart he stomped all over when she confessed her crush to him ten years back. Now Leighton is back in Maverick’s life, no longer the insecure, love-stricken teen—and Maverick can’t help but take notice. Sparks fly between them, but will Leighton be able to open her heart to the one man who broke it all those years ago?

Lost Rider is the first go-round in this Texas-set series filled with sizzle, heart, and plenty of cowboys.

My review

Yes, I’ve read all of Harper Sloan’s Corps Security series. And yes, I really liked them. But they are definitely no western romance books. So when the cover of Lost Rider came along on Netgalley, I had to take a second look, to see if it was really a Harper Sloan book. But it was. And although there were no rough and hot-but-scary-security guys, I found myself suddenly quite interested in cowboys.

We meet Maverick, a frustrated cowboy, who has just learned that the life as he know it, has ended. He can no longer be the rodeo star he has been in the last decade, because one more head injury will be fatal. Since his father just died, he finds himself back at his childhood home, to take care of the family business, together with his brother Clay and sister Quinn.

And there is Leigh, best friend of Quinn. As a teenager, she was madly in love with her best friends older brother. Until he broke her heart and left Pine Oak.

But now he is back. And, well, let’s just say the first reunion between Leigh and Maverick isn’t going very well: “You, Maverick Austin Davis, haven’t changed one bit… Get your head out of your own ass long enough to stop being a massive prick and have some respect for your brother, sister and your father.”

So, there is a lot of tension there. Because on one of the next encounters, it isn’t going any better: “You want your pie, Mav?…Without a second thought, I bring my arm back, before I swing it forward and slap the whole pie into his face. There’s your goddamn pie, you good for nothing jackass!”

And still, there is also a lot of tension between them. Let’s just say: unfinished business. And Maverick is determined to convince Leigh, that they do belong together. Even if she is determined not to get involved with him ever again. Because her heart is still recovering from his brutal heartbreak of ten years ago. Fortunately, he gets help from his baby sister Quinn, who wholeheartedly agrees that they are meant to be together: “Okay, big brother. I’m about to go against every written rule in the best-friend bible right now… Lord knows, one day, maybe after the birth of your first child, she will forgive me for this.”

So we see how Maverick is trying to convince Leigh, while still figuring out what to do with his life, now that his rodeo days are over. And how to proceed with the dark secrets from the past, still creeping up on him.  And, in Harper-style, this is done with a laugh, a tear and some steamy scenes. Yep, loved it. So five out of five stars from me. And keep those westerns coming!

Publisher: Pocket Books

Published: April 2017

ISBN: 9781501155192

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