Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Review - Never Love a Lawman

Title: Never Love a Lawman
Author: Jo Goodman
Publishing Date: September 2009
Genre: Western
Rating: B
Sensuality: Warm

Rachel Bailey escapes to the small mining town of Reidsville, Colorado to carve out a new life for herself. She mainly keeps to herself designing and sewing clothes for the town inhabitants. Through the plans of a generous, yet manipulative man she becomes the proud owner of a stretch of railroad and a silver mine. The catch is that she must marry the town Sheriff in order to inherit the property. Rachael is between a rock and a hard place because the town is dependent upon the mine and the railroad, yet even though she is attracted to Wyatt she does not want to give up her independence.

Rachel Baily has some skeletons in her closet. When readers are first introduced to her they are not sure of her backstory. Wyatt the sheriff assumes she was the mistress of a wealthy, older man and Rachel does nothing to disabuse him of this notion. Of course, the reader will quickly pick up that Wyatt is wrong in his assumptions. The way Goodman slowly reveals information about Wyatt and Rachel is very nicely done and keeps the reader guessing about these two characters. Goodman's strength is in her well developed characters, even the secondary ones, and excellent dialogue.

Both Wyatt and Rachel are appealing characters. Rachel is slightly prickly, but not overtly so and she is well balanced. I found Wyatt more appealing with his honesty and keen insight into human behavior. Wyatt and Rachel have very good chemistry together and they work through their differences well.

Never Love a Lawman, while a good book was not my favorite by Goodman. I think this may have been due to the lackluster plot. I didn't really understand why Rachel had to marry Wyatt. The reasoning behind is seemed pretty flimsy to me. I just didn't feel like the story gripped me like other books by Goodman have in the past. That's not to say this was a bad book, just not her best (in my humble opinion)!

Here is what others had to say:

Monkey Bear Reviews
Impressions of a Reader
Book Pushers Anonymous
Dear Author

This book can be purchased in print or kindle format from Amazon.


Carolyn Crane said...

Well, I LOVE this title. Also, I really like plots where the H/H have to marry. Too bad you didn't love it. Maybe I'll start with a different Goodman.

Lori said...

Still want to read this one. Thanks for the insight!

nath said...

I think I'll be giving this a try :D thanks for the review, Jill!

SarahT said...

I'm a fan of Goodman's books and I think this is one of my faves. But then I'm a sucker for Western settings.

The weak point for me was the conclusion to the suspense plot. It was bizarre.

Glad you enjoyed it!

Jill D. said...

Carolyn - Yes, I usually do to enjoy forced marriage plots, but the reasoning behind this one seemed pretty flimsy. And for the record, I typically LOVE Jo Goodman. I just didn't fall in love with this book. That being said, it still was a good book, just not my favorite by her.

Lori - Your welcome and I hope you enjoy it!

Nath - Good, I have a feeling you will like it. Have you read other books by Goodman before?

Sarah - Okay, glad to see I wasn't the only one who thought the suspense plot didn't work. I found it to be convoluted and confusing. Which other books by Goodman have you liked? The only other books I have read were If His Kiss is Wicked and The Price of Desire, both of which I really liked. I gave them both A ratings.

SarahT said...

I had a couple of issues with 'If His Kiss Is Wicked', but still gave it a high B.

I enjoyed both 'Beyond a Wicked Kiss' and 'A Season to Be Sinful'. The Dennehy Sisters series was great, although most of them are now OOP.

'The Price of Desire' is still on my TBR shelf, and I'm looking forward to reading it!

BTW, you, Stacy and Leontine got me hooked on Karen Marie Moning's Fever series. So much fun! I'm currently reading 'Faefever'.

Jill D. said...

Sarah - Yay!! I am glad you are enjoying the fever series. Mac is something else and the world building is tight.

I have heard good things about the Dennehy Sisters series. I will check and see if I can find them at a used book store or the library. I might get lucky!