🐎🏡 "The Texas SEAL's Surprise" (Three Springs, Texas #1) (2021) 🏡 🐎 - Book Tour & Review
New set of problems
Suddenly single—and pregnant—Abby James hopes Three Springs, Texas, will give her the fresh start she craves. But five minutes in and she’s already clashed with a former Navy SEAL on horseback. Wes Tanner might be devastatingly handsome, but Abby has no time for romance. Especially with a man intent on leaving town. Abby wants to plant some roots…and falling for the tempting Texan could upend all her plans!
A visit for the holidays
Brings love for a lifetime
Cattle rancher Evan Bishop is desperate for Paige Palmer’s help. The veterinarian is in Three Springs for the holidays, but the single dad hopes she has time to save his ailing livestock. Paige is up for the challenge, though not quite up to resisting the cowboy’s rugged charm and his darling devotion to his little girl. Can Paige learn to trust the rancher before the countdown to Christmas ends?
About the Author
One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card, book chair, two backlist books (winner’s choice) and summer goodies (AKA candy)
Ends September 8, 2021
Thank you in advance to the author, Cari Lynn Webb, for providing a complimentary review copy of the book through Prism Book Tours. A positive review was definitely not required or requested in any way; all words are my own.
I love a good cowboy story. I love it even better when it is set in my home-state of Texas.
I was lucky enough to read the last three books of her CITY BY THE BAY series along with a Blackwell Sisters book.
Incidentally, I responded to the author’s email to review the book which coincided with another review opportunity, so I definitely knew it was a “meant to be” situation.
While it is sad to see a series end, I do love seeing a series at the beginning. And, Webb’s THREE SPRINGS TEXAS is definitely a series I’m looking forward to. This romantic cover? Wow!
But, this isn’t a typical “head over heels, fall madly in love” type of read. In fact, it is a slight departure from that. It is definitely a slow-build romance with the “big deal” coming nearly at the end.
Yet, Webb’s writing and prose doesn’t make it seem like it is dragging along. The relatively short chapters help move the story along as well. She builds more on establishing the characters, their lives, as well as fitting everyone together.
Right off, I liked Abby trying to re-build not only her life but her cousin’s. Wes was definitely prickly and there were times it was hard to like him. I understood where he was coming from with regard to his family and moving on from Three Springs.
There are three plots going on here – Wes and a missing inheritance, story about a treasure (which doesn’t wrap up here), and of course the Abby/Wes romance. While there are other characters, the story is told from Abby and Wes’ POV.
As of note, I had to laugh at the beginning of this book. The previous Heartwarming story I read – Carol Ross’ The Secret Santa Project featured a James’ sibling. And, given the fact that Ross and Webb both wrote a book in the Montana placed “Blackwell Sisters”, I thought this was a tad humorous and was waiting for the characters to cross over at some point.
And, for “older” characters – I LOVED Boone and Sam. Those two really know how to mix things up. I think I liked Boone a lot more than Wes at times! I definitely hope to see more of them in future books.
This begins with Wes coming to Abby’s rescue when she takes a wrong turn in her car down a road that isn’t well maintained. This becomes a recurring them as Wes seemingly comes to Abby’s rescue more than once.
He’s definitely not looking to put down roots. There’s a reason why, and for most of the book, he makes it clear.
An unlikely friendship forms, especially when Abby is tasked with creating an event for the town. The problem? The town won’t meet with her.
In addition, Tess – Abby’s cousin – is trying to reopen their grandparents’ store. But, there is a lot going on with it as well. And, some of it is tied into a mysterious story of three sisters and a treasure.
Tess is also dealing with the death of her husband and Abby is quick to pick up on things being a bit off.
Wes, in addition to his own future, is being offered a chance to purchase a local bar he helps manage. Though he feels the legacy belongs to a former SEAL teammate who didn’t make it home – Boone’s grandson.
Boone is facing his own financial crisis with regard to his land. Yet, he takes everything in stride.
Webb keeps everything going including what Abby has planned for the event, as well as the treasure hunt she thinks will secure the town’s future. Abby is of the thought that the treasure might save everyone and put the town on the map, so to speak.. Though as she learns, the story is more about family and community.
Upon hearing about the sisters and a treasure, Wes immediately compares them to his brother.
Even by 48% into the novel his “inheritance” is all Wes seems to care about. There is definitely zero character progression for him. But, Abby is still hopeful. I had to really admire her for not giving up on the guy. One thing she learns Wes cares about – the horses he rescues.
And, it is clear that Abby does care for Wes.
It isn’t until around 70% where things get interesting – Abby and Wes get closer, Boone has a medical episode, and Abby’s idea comes through as a result of Boone’s past.
As far as Wes’ brother, Webb keeps us guessing until nearly the end. And, I really couldn’t blame Wes for reacting the way he did. This was a point where I was a bit irritated with Abby.
About 80% of the way into the book, there were quite a few character additions that made it difficult to follow who was who. Yet, I still loved it. There were times I found it difficult to put down, and there were a few points I was happy to have a breather. Wes’ “brooding” part carried on a bit too far for me.
The Texas SEAL’s Surprise was very intense, deeply complex, with a lot going on that still built on the premise of what family really is and what it means. It is definitely a solid start for a new series.
One lesson that the author puts in this – money can’t buy honor, character, or respect. That really resonated with me. And, sometimes the wrong turn can be the best mistake ever.
Since this is from the Heartwarming line, readers can expect a clean read. In fact, there is very little romance until the end of the book. Infidelity is mentioned, though it is prior to the book.
I can’t wait to see what Webb has planned next in Texas! And, I hope to hear more about the treasure hunt!
5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ – Goodreads
5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ – BookBub
5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ – Personal Rating (see rating explanation in this blog: https://readingexcursions.blogspot.com/2020/01/rating-system-2020-changes.html)