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Maddie's Choice by Joyce Zeller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Source: Received to Review
Genre: Adult Romance
Book Description: Romance writer Maddie Taylor is fed up with New York City. She is getting nowhere with her latest manuscript and does not believe true love exists outside of her imagination. When a friend, Jonah Spartman, dies and wills her half of his Arkansas cattle ranch, she sees the chance for a new beginning. Jonah has also left behind two orphaned great-grandsons desperate for affection and an accounting book in the red.
The other half of the failing ranch belongs to Gideon Spartman, Jonah’s grandson, who believes all capacity for love was torn from him during his tour of duty in Afghanistan. Rugged and sexy, Gideon is the enthralling physical manifestation of the hero in Maddie’s current manuscript. He is far from happy to be sharing an inheritance that is rightfully his. As she senses the need behind Gideon’s rough and unwelcoming exterior, Maddie acknowledges her own yearning for love and family.
Jonah’s will requires Maddie to stay on the ranch for three months. When that time is up, will she return to her comfortable but emotionally barren existence or embrace the challenges of her new life, which include cattle rustlers and drug dealers? Maddie’s choice proves to be far from simple.
My thoughts: Maddie is a successful romance author. She is suffering from writers block and needs to get away from the hectic life in New York City. Her opportunity comes when she inherits half of a ranch from a friend.
Gideon ran from the ranch after high school graduation. Years spent on a special team in the military have left him hardened and suffering. He doesn't feel there is much humanity left in him. He is embittered that he has had to come back to the ranch after his grandfather's death. Not only does he have the ranch, his brother's two orphaned son's come with it and a strange woman as a business partner.
From the moment that Maddie and Gideon meet, sparks fly. Romantic sparks as well as head-butting. They come from different perspectives and lifestyles. Neither realize that the other holds the key to what they are both looking for, a sense of belonging and family.
This book has romance, cattle rustling, and a bit of a mystery. It is fun to read. Maddie and Gideon are both engaging characters. The book is sweeter with the presence of Gideon's nephews. The boys add a greater depth and character to the book.
I enjoyed reading the book. It does have sexual situations and swearing. It is an adult book.
About the Author: Joyce Zeller has written articles for a magazine and a cooking column for a chain of suburban newspapers north of Chicago. She has written five books and published two, The Hidden History of Eureka Springs, and Accidental Alien, a work of science fiction, both available on Amazon. Her short story, “Love is a Seed,” is featured in Embrace: A Romance Collection, (2012 Goldmine Press). Joyce has served in the United States Army. As a professional perfumer (School of Perfumery, London, England) and an aroma-therapist, she made custom fragrances in her store. Her creation, Mountain Air, was declared the Arkansas Sesquicentennial Fragrance in 1965. Her latest achievement was getting elected as Alderman to the Eureka Springs City Council. Maddie’s Choice is a romance with her favorite theme, that being human is a lonely business, but for everyone there is somebody to love. It’s a matter of finding them. There will always be kids and animals in her books, and always, humor, “because life without humor is unthinkable.”
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