When Katie Underwood discovers a trio of cougar cubs, she calls the local zoo for guidance and comes face to face with Bowie Wilson, her high school bully. He’s handsome as ever and a changed man, but she’ll never risk her heart again for anyone, especially him.
Katie has quit her underwhelming marketing job to come back to her tiny hometown of Sagebrush Flats and help her family after her ex-cop father is injured in a shooting. On a walk, she discovers three abandoned cougar cubs, calls the local zoo, and is stunned when Bowie shows up to rescue them. She’s enraged that he doesn’t remember her and disconcerted to realize he’s still capable of making her “hormones dance a happy little jig.” When Bowie clues into their shared background, he’s mortified, but Katie ties her plan for revenge into a brilliant marketing idea for the struggling zoo that he simply can’t turn down. The two create a social media campaign, and Katie even volunteers to help care for the adorable cubs. Spending time at the zoo, Katie meets Bowie’s daughter, Abby, and acknowledges that Bowie has become an honorable, hardworking single father and zookeeper. Falling into a sexual relationship is easy. Truly seeing Bowie for who he is and forgiving his past transgressions is harder, but once he protects her from a family enemy, she begins to understand his brutal past. And when a vengeful former lover attacks their relationship, Katie must clarify her feelings for him or risk losing him forever. Kerr’s debut is original and touching, handling a bundle of sensitive subjects with wit and heart. The occasional scene told from the perspective of the zoo’s rascally honey badger is a bonus delight.
Clever, fun, and poignant. A standout debut.