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Two Texas business partners find passion and love in unexpected places and turn from confirmed bachelors to dedicated mates.

Two linked short novels previously published in e-format come together for the first time in this quick, hot read. In The Cowboy and the Captive, partners Luc Jardin and Jack Riley agree to fly a woman named Maria Caterina Angeles and a mysterious box from South America to California for lots of money and the promise of sex. After things get violent and the box turns out to contain drugs, Luc swears vengeance and kidnaps Maria—with her brother’s blessing—to teach her a lesson and try to get her clean. The woman who winds up on his ranch swears she’s Maria’s twin, Melina. She’s definitely not a drug addict and is nothing like the conniving woman they met before, and Luc is incredibly attracted to her. Melina is the woman for him, but vindictive, down-spiraling Maria would rather see her sister dead than happy. Later, in The Cowboy and the Thief, Jack finds his own forever love when a trip to Ireland introduces him to the prim Angel Manning. After her father sells Jack a family heirloom she considers hers, she follows him to Texas to get it back. Legend has it the ancient Celtic torque has mystical matchmaking powers, and while Angel believes she’s retrieving her family’s legacy, she’s actually finding her mate and unleashing her sensual nature. Author Leigh is known for sizzling erotic romance, and these stories offer some scorching sex scenes. The romance never develops as well as the sex, however, and both stories demand a lot of hard-to-swallow suspension of disbelief. Also, in Captive, there are so many squeamish aspects to Melina’s back story and the couple’s introduction that it’s hard to enjoy their road to love.

Some sizzle, some fizzle, some ick.

Pub Date: Dec. 5th, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-250-15087-5
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2017


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