"3 Stars!...It's enjoyable and filled with likable characters. There are also some interesting family dynamics that play into the outcome of the story."--Sandra Garcia-Myers, Romantic Times Reviews
"...This story is so great! I loved, loved, loved Clay...he is a beautiful and honorable man inside and out and Paige was made for him...Such a sweet and enjoyable story and I know many readers will just love it."--Ley, Joyfully Reviewed
"5 Hearts!...The writing duo known as Jamie Craig has given us an excellent tale of a family’s love...The main characters, Clay and Paige struggle to remain true to themselves with lust and attraction pulling them in a different direction...Great dialogue, scenery and interactions make this a powerful story. It’s easy to read, naturally flowing from scene to scene. I hope Jamie Craig continues this series."--Dee Dailey, The Romance Studio
"4 Angels!...Jamie Craig knows how to twist a good western into something more than the average love story. Paige is a beautiful, smart woman who would prefer a man love her for what’s in her heart than the outer package. Handsome and selfless Clay has always taken the higher road to allow his brothers to fulfill their dreams...The romance between Clay and Paige moved like a well-danced tango. The work towards pleasing each other without actually realizing that love prompts them to do so. The story is set in a picturesque location, with nothing but nature assisting in their building a lasting future...A love story intended for those who enjoy a relaxed gentle ride to their happily ever after."--NeNe, Fallen Angel Reviews
...Maybe leaving her job might not be so bad. Maybe if she could convince Ty to take time off during the year to stay at the ranch, she could tolerate being dragged from town to town when he was riding. There was a town nearby; she might even be able to teach part-time.
With renewed hope in her heart, she slipped in through the open stable doors. Clay had told her to talk to Ty about it; the next time he called, she was going to do just that.
Sugar and Dan were tied to a rope outside the tack room, but neither was saddled. She couldn’t see Clay, but she thought she could hear something in the back stall. A pause, then a thump, pause, thump. It was as rhythmic as breathing. Curious, she followed the sound, stepping between beams of light slanting through the roof.
She found Clay in a small stall, stripped to the waist, a shovel in hand. The thump was the sound of manure and hay hitting the wheelbarrow as Clay methodically tossed each fresh load in a short arc.
He had to have been up for hours. Sweat gleamed across his skin, each muscle outlined for any and all to see. She watched a single bead run down the side of his neck, detour when it hit his shoulder, and then continue downward, over his chest, around the nipple, and along abs that looked like they’d been carved from stone. A thin dark line of hair snaked down the middle of his navel, too, disappearing beneath the waistband of his jeans.
He had no idea she was standing there. He worked with the freedom of a man who knew exactly what he was doing, knew exactly what he wanted, and Paige thought she’d never seen someone so intent on something so simple. Not even Ty looked like this when he was focused on his riding. It made her chest tighten and her breath quicken.
Her quickening breath might have alerted him to her presence, because he looked up suddenly, pinning her with his curious green eyes. An unexpected shiver of shame rolled through her, like he had caught her spying on something private, witnessing something she had no right to see. The moment came and passed quickly, and he buried the nose of the shovel in the soft ground at his feet. He leaned against the handle, his right toes resting behind his left heel, and favored her with a smile that put her back at ease.
“I didn’t forget you.”
“I didn’t think you had.” Sticking her hands in her back pockets, she ventured a step closer. “Do you always muck out the stables before breakfast?”
Clay wiped the sweat from his forehead with the back of his hand. “Sometimes. I came in here to get Sugar and I noticed Tony didn’t do it on Friday.” He tossed another shovel’s worth of manure and straw into the barrow, and then set the shovel against the wall. “Did Ty show you how to saddle a horse?”
Paige shook her head. It was hard not to stare when his every movement drew attention to a new muscle. She half-wanted to ask him to put his shirt back on, but the other half that was enjoying the view quashed the urge.
“Are you going to need to shower?” she asked, and then immediately regretted it. It brought up images of Clay under the water, that dark line of hair wet and tempting as it led downward. Her shame returned in a rush. This was her fiancé’s brother. The last thing she should be thinking about was getting on her knees and helping him wash up.
“Wouldn’t make sense to shower now. Still got a whole day of work ahead of me.” He paused and sniffed under his arm. “Do I stink?”
She stifled the desire to close the distance between them and check up close and personal in favor of turning it into a joke. “I’m standing in the middle of a stable. No matter what, you’re going to be the best smelling thing in it.”
His eyes lingered on her. “No, I’m not.”
Clay turned before she responded and left the stall, leaving her to follow him back to the tack room. Straps of golden light fell across his shoulders and the back of his neck. Dust clung to his skin, and he brushed it away from his arms.
Her eyes followed the long sweep of his hands, but when he kept missing one patch on the back of his bicep, Paige stepped up behind him.
“Here. Let me.”
He stiffened the second before her fingers touched his skin, holding perfectly still while she swiped away the stubborn grit. Though she didn’t look up at him, she felt his gaze boring down at her, watching her hands glide over his muscle...