I will read anything I can get my hands on. Seriously.
Most books I read are reviewed for Harlequin Junkie, but I'll have an occasional independent or author requested review that I'll post.
In How Meg West Was Won by Libby Mercer, Meg West doesn't know where she'd be if it wasn't for her friends and coworkers at their California co-op. They give her the boost she needs and the sense of community she longs for since losing her beloved mother. But unless they can all raise a boatload of money, the local co-op is going to be bought out by a greedy corporation. Which has Meg scrambling to find a solution. Then sexy cowboy Dutch Hargrave walks into her life and offers her a job on his cattle farm, helping him change over to a more modern and humane set up. A staunch vegetarian, Meg isn't sure she's the right person to help but she desperately needs that cash. But she gets way more than she bargained for when she falls for Dutch and his peaceful ranch, making her dream of a future together with the hunky sweetheart of a guy.
'Well, if the fact that he was a slightly, sexist, gun-toting (probably) cowboy who enjoyed a big, juicy steak every night (probably) wasn't enough to douse any spark of attraction she might have for him, this certainly was. He was a dog person. The two of them could never work.'
Dutch keeps telling himself he hired Meg strictly to help him get his ranch in working order and not because of the strong attraction between them. He's already up against some serious opposition with his plans to raise grass-fed cows. He doesn't need any more headaches. But Meg proves to be smart and resourceful, helping Dutch with his family's business and doing right by his heritage and workers. Although whatever's growing between them seems to take up most of his attention the longer they work together. He's not sure a cat-loving California girl who prides herself on being a vegetarian could ever think about a relationship with a dog-loving, football-watching cattle rancher, but Dutch might just have to see if they can work something out.
'Sure, the thought of being caught up in a romance with Meg got his blood pumping and his heart soaring, but the thought of their time together being stamped with a big old expiration date kind of put a damper on things, to say the least.'
Quirky and sweet, with a fun Western theme that is sure to please romance fans, How Meg West Was Won kept me entertained and wondering how things would ever work out for Dutch and Meg. But work out, it did! And in a super romantic way that fit the couple perfectly.
This was actually my first time reading Libby Mercer's work. (I know!) And after falling head over heels for this opposites-attract couple, I know I'll be checking out more of her books. I think what I enjoyed most here was the balance of a fast paced, fun, modern story and how each character had such a nice emotional depth to them. It wasn't just a lighthearted romance, although it certainly was that in part. Meg and Dutch both had their own problems to sort out that added a bit of drama to the storyline and made me want to see them succeed in their partnership. And to find their HEA, of course.
Dutch and Meg were equally likable characters. He was kind of the quintessential Texas cowboy, with his stetson hat and lazy drawl that could melt hearts. And she was the all-American California girl who used her smarts to further her beliefs in helping the environment and safe, humane treatment of animals. As far as opposites-attract couples, this was a doozy. But it worked very well and led to some humorous moments at the same time. The sparks of attraction were instant between Meg and Dutch but I liked that this was a slow burn romance and it showed the natural progression as they got to know each other. It didn't feel forced or rushed. So the relationship they built over time was solid and was a great thing to see.
Strong plot. Engaging characters. And a Texas-sized romance to boot. How Meg West Was Won was exactly what I was hoping it would be and had me smiling just about the whole way through.
Free ARC provided by the author for an honest review.