Bantam, June 2002, 5.99, 384 pp.
Livid Hollywood superstar Jackson Stone interrupts a romantic tryst between his thirteen-year-old daughter Cherie and her wannabe lover music star Jimmy Toledo. The tabloids already have the story so Jackson decides it is time to make a hasty retreat until the scandal is replaced by some other more notorious event. Taking Cherie with him, Jackson vanishes to no where Arizona, hiding at the Lazy M ranch.
Jackson offers the dude ranch owner widow Rachel Marsh a large sum of cash if she allows him to hide undercover as a cowboy. Though the ranch has shown some success lately, Rachel can use the money to help her raise her eleven-year-old son Sam. With Jackson playing the part of an inept cowboy, he lands the role of a lifetime as he and Rachel fall in love. However, a morose Cherie remains an unhappy camper who follows the tenet that misery loves miserable people so she goes out of her way to make everyone miserable.
Emily Carmichael provides her fans with an amusing contemporary romance that has a serious undertone to the tale. The story line is at its slapstick funniest when Jackson tries his best to be Stony the cowboy. His relationship with Rachel feels fairy tale like, as if royalty prince and a pretty commoner found love. Cherie adds teenage angst as she struggles between being daddy's little girl and her raging adult-like hormones. Readers will enjoy the delightful THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE SEXY.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner