by Anna DeForest, historical (2000)
Zebra, $5.99, ISBN 0-8217-6756-9
A Cowboy For Christmas is a decent story. It would've fared better if the plot contrivances that keep creeping into the story an annoying moments didn't make want to scream. The plot contrivances are the sorts that have been so overused that I can't muster up much patience for them anymore.
But I'm sure readers more patient with the woman-pretending-to-be-a-boy and driving-her-away-for-his-own-good (among other contrivances), if they stick around, will find a pretty nice, un-sappy love story about Christmas, family (yes, there are kids - pffft), and some nice love scenes to tide the broken down fireplace.
Tortured ex-lawman (groan) Nathaniel Hollister accidentally stumbles upon a guy who turns out to be a woman (groan). This crazy woman is trying to save the day by becoming some sort of avenging Xena, taking on Evil Rustlers Of The West on her own (sigh). She gets injured (hahaha!) and he takes her back to her ranch, where it is revealed that our poverty-ridden heroine is trying to keep her family together (big, big groan here).
He sticks around to help Robin Matthews (the heroine). They feel this urge to procreate and fight it, he because he feels he's too old and not good enough for her (EEEEEKKKK!). She has been Traumatized by Men before (AAAAARRRGGHHH!). After the first tempestous boinking, he starts pushing her away.
Still, A Cowboy For Christmas does have its moments. No matter how low it dips into its bag of Old Plot Stuff, the story is still readable. It's just that the fun lacks zing or even life. This is like a funny old clown, quite entertaining at times, but let's face it, those creaking old bones are definitely weary and tired, so give it a rest, Old Pop.
This book at Amazon.com
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