Not Just Another Cowboy Romance

A great follow-up to “Her Cowboy Reunion”…

Just released and on shelves nationwide right now…

I’m hoping this story touches hearts and souls across the U.S. of A. and not for the obvious, that it’s a biracial romance although I’m thrilled to be able to use this kind of reality in my stories….

It will touch hearts and souls because the characters win you from the get-go.

All Jace Middleton wanted was to be able to make a solid living in his hometown of Shepherd’s Crossing, the town his ancestors helped settle after some very long cattle drives out of Texas…

But the town has fallen on hard times, there’s no work for a talented contractor/carpenter/cowboy like Jace and even though he likes working on his friend’s ranch, that’s not his dream. His dream is to build and run his own spread but that option has withered away the past few years. So now– it’s time to go.

Until a grumpy, crotchety, eccentric old white woman shows up, claiming she’s his grandmother. Of course she’s bonkers.

Isn’t she?

But when she produces his birth certificate–his REAL one–he realizes that he’s spent 30 years living a lie. And toss in two baby nieces  with blond hair and blue eyes, abandoned by their mother, a half-sister he never knew he had and Jace’s life hasn’t just taken a hit. It’s done a full 180. And when his eccentric and wealthy grandmother asks him to renovate her falling down ranch house, Jace realizes he can stay if he takes the job but at what cost to his self-respect? The thought that well-kept secrets secured a phony life for him rankles…

And when his biological grandmother wants Melonie Fitzgerald, one of the new co-owners of Pine Ridge Ranch, to design the home makeover, Jace almost wishes he’d been nice to her when she treated him like pond scum a few days before.


He’s roped tighter than a calf in a rodeo, and just as angry, but as old truths make their way to the surface, and Jace sees the innocence of two little lives, he begins to realize that maybe– just maybe– there’s a reason for all of this. And when he realizes that he’s falling for Melonie, and that she’s a ridiculously talented designer, he starts to see new possibilities….

But Melonie has a healthy fear of horses and no great love of ranching and her dream of having a Fixer-Upper type cable show means she won’t be staying in their sleepy little town any longer than she absolutely has to and Jace had his heart broken in a public display a few years back… he’s got no interest in running that route again.

But it’s no accident that Jace and Melonie have been thrown together, and when God sets a plan in motion, eventually the people get a clue, right?

I had so much fun writing this story. A few tears, lots of smiles, and as a mom and grandma, I know lots of families where children aren’t necessarily being raised by moms and dads… and to take this very real situation and weave it into the threads of a romance gave me the depth of realism that I wanted.

In proper cowboy fashion– when the chips are down– Jace comes to his senses but only after he realizes that Melonie Fitzgerald isn’t the retiring Southern Belle he thought she was, but a hard-working, talented woman that isn’t afraid to stand her ground with tough old women, teething babies  or stubborn cowboys. Exactly the kind of woman he needs.

I’ve got a copy of this wonderful book to give away today, and yes, I hope the winner loves it! So tell me…

Do you know families that have had to shift custody of little ones around for whatever reason?

And how hard would it be to step into the role of parent when you least expect it?

Give me a shout below and wishing you all the happiest of New Year’s blessings!

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27 thoughts on “Not Just Another Cowboy Romance”

  1. Happy New Year. I was that child shifted back and forth between both parents and a set of grandparents growing up.

  2. Happy New Year! This book sounds really good especially since half of my life, I thought one man was my father, but then I found out someone else really was. A lot of things fell into place at that point. I just wish I had more time to get to know him.

    • Oh my stars, you will love this story, then. You lived it! And yes, I’m sure people meant well in most cases (and sometimes they didn’t mean well at all) but it’s a wake-up call to realize you’re not who you thought you were because generally there’s a whole lot of lies and cover up to pull it off… And then sometimes it’s for a very good reason.

      Life sure is a mix, isn’t it?

    • Estella, for realsies???? Maybe it’s because I’ve worked with children and families for years, but I know a lot… Oh. Wait. And I’m from a big dysfunctional family… that might up the odds in my favor, LOL! Oy vay!!!!!

  3. Happy New Year. Yes I know one family from church that is constantly taking in young children because their parents aren’t sure they want them. So these poor children are constantly gong between their parents and this couple. The couple is trying to keep as many of these children as possible. But it just seems like an uphill battle. But then the Good Lord is the one in charge. And this lovely couple know this.

    • Lori, that’s a story waiting to be told, isn’t it? God love them, what wonderful hearts they must have. It’s not easy to step into the “loco parentis” role…

      Thank you so much for sharing that with us!

  4. I’ve never had to share custody but my daughter’s have or will spend the majority of their lives without their father in it. My oldest daughter’s father died when she was 8. My youngest daughter lost her dad when she was around nine after I threw him out and moved back to Mexico. Both my daughters are half hispanic by pure coincidence. I lived in El Paso when I met my oldests dad through mutual friends and El Paso is majority hispanic. I didn’t even know many white men in El Paso now that I think about it. I met by youngest daughter’s father when I moved to East Texas to work for my uncle after we closed our last feedlot. All my uncles employees were Mexicans, he had a plant nursery and lets face it not many other men would work for the amount of money those men did for planting and taking care of plants. I have many bi-racial family members. We have hispanic, black and orientals in our family. I would love the opportunity to read this book! Happy New Year!

    • Stephanie, we have lots of ethnicities in our family as well. Although no Asians, so someone must marry someone of Asian descent! 🙂 But Latinos and African Americans/blacks, German Americans, and of course my Irish and Dutch and Scottish connection…

      I love being a melting pot, I think we’re blessed and I love seeing more mixed race couples everywhere I go because acceptance isn’t about talk… it’s about doing. And when families are obviously mixed, we take down a lot of those awful barriers naturally.

      I’m so glad you stopped by today!

  5. Ruthy, this sounds good. It reflects the way we live today and the rich ethnic stew that is still America, but with a lot more blending. Looking forward to reading this.

    • Kathy, you know how I love romance to be real… Real folks with real lives and real problems and real love… Ah, that love! I love romance so much!!! 🙂

      But I love that I can write romance with the grains of daily truths that we all face, not to bring us down… but to raise us up, especially for women to see that they can hurdle those bumps in the road and take charge of their lives… As a pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps successful career woman, I love to see women rise above… and then find the romance God planned for them!

  6. Congratulations on the new release, Ruthy! That’s wonderful. It’s very sad that so many grandparents are having to become parents and raise their grandchildren. I don’t think I could do it. I’m too tired to even think about it. Of course, if I had to, I would.

    • Linda, you summed it up perfectly. We rise to the occasion, don’t we? And I’ve seen the good sides and bad sides of this… and kids that kind of got left hanging at 10, 11, 12 years old when Grandma and Grandpa get too sick or infirm to keep going. But yes, like you, I’d do it if needed because if we don’t… who will?

      Of course Gilda pegged handsome young JACE to do it in this book, LOL! She wasn’t about to tackle 10 month old twins. Smart woman!

  7. Jace would have a lot of emotions to struggle with after learning such family secrets and being responsible for two baby nieces. Sounds like a good story. In this area, Cooperative Extension and the local community college have offered workshops for grandparents parenting grandchildren to help them cope with the legal aspects of their situation and find the resources available to provide assistance when needed.

    • Alice, what a great resource that is. And crucial for folks who are staring Social Security in the face on one end, and food stamps for children on the other….

      Or grandparents who’ve looked forward to some years of travel and retirement only to find themselves tucked back in the kitchen, raising someone else’s babies…

      There’s a lot of mixed emotions there, for sure.

  8. Denise, it’s a battle sometimes and it can get really ugly. I’d love to see us all be nicer… and for marriages to last longer.

    God bless him, I hope that goes wonderfully well. He might be a romance hero in a book before you know it!

  9. Hi Ruthy, this sounds like a lovely book and I would love to read it to start this new year. You asked about custody of children being shifted. I certainly never thought that the drug epidemic would affect our middle-class Kentucky family but it did and my son-in-law has been incarcerated since April 2015. For a short time my husband and I had temporary custody of our then 14 month old granddaughter and even today, take care of her a big part of the time. Our daughter has a job that demands a lot of overtime and a child care center isn’t feasible. I am thankful that I can do this but I wish that our granddaughter had a two parent family. We do what we need to do and trust that God’s Plan is always the best!

    • Oh, Connie, you have a true understanding of how things can go awry when least expected! What a blessing you guys are to your daughter, and I’m so sorry that everything went bad with your son-in-law. The scourge of drug abuse and addiction in our beautiful country hits all of us, sweet thing. I don’t know a family who is unaffected. God bless you and keep you!

  10. Sadly there are many families in this area where the grandparents or someone other than the parent are raising children. Many cases involve one parent deserting the other and the remaining parent not being able or wanting to raise the little ones. The majority of cases around here involve drugs and/or the parents being incarcerated. Knowing children raised by grandparents, it is not always a good idea. They are often too tired or ill to deal with a young child. They either restrict them too much or let them do what they please. Another consideration is you are putting the parents who may not have done a good job raising their children in charge of the next generation. That being said, I have seen some who have done a very good job.
    Could we step into the role of custodial grandparents? I think so. At this point, it would be the great-grandchildren we would be raising as well as the youngest grandchildren. I know I have slowed down quite a bit. The love would be there, but the ability to run around the yard and play jump rope are long gone.
    The book sounds good and is a timely addition to the genre.

    • Patricia, I hear you. I’ve seen it go both ways, too. One remarkable story was an aging grandmother who defied her son and daughter-in-law’s wills and had a judge declare the orphaned baby into her custody, then changed states… and it was not in that baby’s best interests to be with her, but the baby’s older siblings and aunt didn’t have the money to fight a long court case… And then I’ve seen grandparents step in and do wonderfully well… but it sure does take energy to raise a bunch of kids! Yowza! Part of my keeping in shape and health is because what if this happened to me? Would I be energetic and lively enough to raise some cute grandkids? Or would they be better off with an uncle or auntie?

      I’m hoping I never have to find out, but life sure does throw turns and twists.

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