Natalie Forrester is a single mom managing part of a busy ranch and Aaron Reyes is a widower who returns to the ranch because of the conditions of the will his wife left and when the two meet, there is an immediate attraction. Given permission to nurse her young daughter in her boss's office if he was not there, Natalie Forrester was surprised to find a new man walking in. Although Aaron Reyes looks like a down on his luck cowboy looking for work, he is actually well-off and the widower of one of owners of the ranch.
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The conditions of the will that clarified the rights and responsibilities of each owner of the ranch stated that each person who benefited financially needed to live and work at the ranch at least eight weeks out of the year. Two days before his rights to the ranch were terminated, he strolled in to the office, ready to work.
Soon after Natalie discovered she was pregnant by her boyfriend, he left and has not been heard of again. Therefore, she is a little gun-shy and since her daughter is only three months old, she has not put much thought into dating yet. However, when Aaron and Natalie meet, they are both reminded of how easy physical attraction is. Aaron has a few of his own secrets and is still grieving the loss of his wife, who died in a horse riding accident.
They are both determined not to act on their feelings, but their options are limited and fate keeps throwing them together. Although Aaron is determined not to be treated like a boss, he does not hesitate to make suggestions. As part of the rules for inheritance, he is to sleep in the bunkhouse with the employees and put in a full day's work, which he does with no complaint.
Aaron immediately clicks with Natalie's young daughter, Shiloh, and he has very specific ideas as to some improvements he would like to have on the ranch, including heavy-duty helmets offered to adults who ride horses. If his wife, Hailey had been wearing one at the time of her accident, she might have survived.
As the story progresses, the reader is given a better understanding of the issues that both characters are dealing with. Aaron feels that dating anyone seriously would be a betrayal of his wife and although Natalie was not in love with her daughter's father, she worries about confusing the baby. In addition, they are essentially both terrified of being in love.
Natalie's parents, who have worked at the ranch for many years, and the owners who consistently manage the facility warn her to stay away from Aaron and she tries. But, true love has no understanding and they continue to be thrown together until they make love. When Aaron works very hard on the ranch and establishes that after the eight weeks of work, he will be using the money in a way that honors his wife, he begins to make a new place for himself.
By the end, he realizes he only wants to be at the ranch and to be a husband and daddy. They agree to be together and it ends very happily.
Best part of story, including ending:
I liked the story because it was a sweet and romantic story. However, it was very predictable and lacked much conflict, so while there were aspects of the story I enjoyed, I wasn't crazy about the entire thing.
Best scene in story:
Soon after Aaron arrives at the ranch, he is shown to where his bunk will be and he meets him roommates. Two are hardworking guys who are fairly easy-going, while he will be sharing a room with a very strong, opinionated woman named Teresa, because the only empty employee bed is in her room. He quickly decides that he will be sleeping on the couch. It was just hysterically funny for this very laid back man nervous and scared by sharing a room with a woman who is bigger and stronger than he is.
Opinion about the main character:
I love that Natalie Forrester is such a good mother. She works, arranges for daycare at the ranch and nurses her daughter on demand. She hesitates to start a relationship because it would take the already limited time from her daughter and tries to put her daughter's needs ahead of everything she does.