Title: The Cowboy's Surprise Baby
Publisher: Love Inpspired
Publish Date: Aug 2015
Review Copy Provided By: Harlequin and Book TribHometown Reunion
After years away serving his country, Cole Bishop finally returns home—with a newborn baby in tow. As a single dad, Cole needs help. But the last thing he expects to encounter at his new job is his high school sweetheart—all grown up and more beautiful than ever. Tessa Applewhite might have broken Cole's heart years before, but she's never forgotten him. And he can wrangle her heart like no one else ever has. But Tessa rejected him when the stakes weren't nearly as high. Can Cole trust her again—and in the process, form a forever family?
Review: I've read a lot of second chance at romance novels lately. A LOT! This one attracted me because I love ranch romances and frankly after so many 2nd chance books that were more, erm...smutty, I was glad to read this Love Inspired novel.
Tessa and Cole have a history together. Cole has left the military to care for his newborn son. The problem is, his son Grayson doesn't figure into the story as much as I would have liked. In fact, the baby felt more like a plot device rather than a mini character, and that kind of made me sad. I love stories with babies.
Instead, the story focused on Cole and Tessa's work at Redemption Ranch. Cole really seemed to grow in the job he didn't feel he could do, but not without mishap. Though the mishaps aren't earthshattering.
I really loved how Cole handled Kaylie and her personal issue near the end of the book. It really showed how he had grown as the story progressed, as well as how he effected the young girl's life.
This was really a sweet novel. I felt the story put the romance on the back burner, even though you know there's still chemistry between them. The ending seemed a little much to me, since the two never really resumed their relationship, at least in a girlfriend/boyfriend sort of way.
Rating: 4 flowers