Falling In Love With Your Own Hero
I’ll admit it. I have a thing for cowboys. I grew up on a farm in Kansas and have always been captivated by the swagger, the boots, the cocky grins, and the deep slow drawl of a cowboy.
Stolen Away—Book 3 in the Hearts of Montana series is set in Broken Falls, Montana, a fictional town based on both the small town in Kansas where I grew up, and Fort Benton, Montana, the small town my husband and I lived in after we graduated college. Living in Big Sky country gets into your soul, and Montana will forever be in my heart.
And so will Cash Walker. I first introduced Cash in Tucked Away—Book 1 of the series, and he was actually the bad boy that caused enough trouble between the hero and the heroine that he ended up with a black eye. And yet, you still loved the guy.
He is the handsome rebel that charms and flirts with every woman. He’s cute and sweet and fun to be around, but no woman can capture his heart. Until Emma, the wounded divorcee who shows up at his ranch with a goat riding shotgun in the front seat of her car.
I am really a small town girl at heart, and I like the simple things in life. So I gave some of those simple scenes to Cash and Emma, like getting caught in the rain and Cash teaching Emma how to bake a pie. But the romance and tension between them turned those simple times into extraordinary moments. Emma is shy and unsure of herself, but through Cash’s encouragement and belief in her, she finds her own courage.
Here’s a snippet from a scene where Cash has taken Emma on a horseback ride to a mountain lake. I fell in love with Cash throughout this whole book, his tough exterior that hides a tender heart, the way he encourages Emma to find her own bravery inside of herself, and the way he says ‘darling’ in that deep slow drawl that feels like warm honey dripping down your spine. But he slayed me in this scene, and I still get a little teary reading it.
Even though it was early fall, the tree’s branches were still thick with leaves, and they formed a canopy over the base of the tree. A slight breeze blew, and whispers of sound fluttered through the multicolored leaves that were just starting to change.
“It’s beautiful,” Emma said, her voice holding a tone of awe.
Cash slipped up behind her, sliding his arms around her waist and speaking into her ear. “You’re beautiful.”
She ducked her head, obviously embarrassed. “You don’t need to say that, Cash. I know I’m not. I’ve always been plain. Even in school, I knew I was kind of like a dandelion in a bed of roses.”
“What are you talking about?” He turned her around and tipped her chin up. “You’re no dandelion. And you are beautiful to me. Being beautiful is about more than the way you wear your hair or how you look. It’s the way you are on the inside. It’s how you treat people and how you care for animals and old folks. Your beauty shines through when you smile at customers in the diner, when you laugh with Charlie, when you put a comforting arm around Sophie, and when you grin up at me in the moments after you’ve just called out my name and God’s in the same breath.”
A pink tinge colored her cheeks as she offered him a small laugh.
“I think we’ve already established that the person who made you feel less than beautiful was an asshole.”
“But I don’t see you as a rose, either.” He turned her to point at a row of flowers growing beside a fallen log. “See those wildflowers growing there. Aren’t they beautiful?”
“That’s how I see you, darlin’. Like a wildflower. One that stands tall and grows where it’s planted. Full of color and brightness. Wildflowers can bloom anywhere, on the side of the road, in a field or on a mountain, even next to a cow pie. Because they’re strong and resilient. They use the resources they have available, and they make everything more beautiful just by their presence.”
She inhaled sharply, and he worried that she might start to cry. “Dang, but your words can sometimes just make me weak in the knees.”
“Then you better sit down and have you some of Cherry’s fried chicken—best solution for weak knees.” Cash grinned and pulled the supplies from the back of his saddle.
Seriously, how can you not fall in love with a guy that offers you beautiful poetic words and fried chicken?
Yes, it’s possible to fall in love with your own hero, and I hope that Cash is a hero that you fall in love with too.
About the book:
Elusive charmer Cash Walker is a tough-as-nails cowboy, except when it comes to the shy woman who shows up with a pretty smile, a wounded spirit, and a goat riding shotgun in her passenger seat.
Recently divorced from an abusive husband, Emma Frank has come home to Broken Falls, Montana. Lost, alone, and unable to escape the bullying tactics of her ex-brothers-in-law, she finds solace and friendship at the Tucked Away farm and with the handsome cowboy who believes in her and who helps her find her own courage.
There’s a darkness in Cash’s past that’s kept him from ever letting anyone get too close, but he can’t seem to stay away from Emma, who seems to be the one to finally break through his tough exterior and steal this cowboy’s heart.
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About the author:
USA TODAY Best-selling author Jennie Marts loves to make readers laugh as she weaves stories filled with love, friendship, and intrigue. She writes for Entangled Publishing, and reviewers call her books “laugh out loud funny” and full of great characters that are “endearing and relatable.”
She is living her own happily ever after in the mountains of Colorado with her husband, two sons, two dogs, and a parakeet that loves to tweet to the oldies. She’s addicted to Diet Coke, adores Cheetos, and believes you can’t have too many books, shoes, or friends.
Her books include the contemporary western romance Hearts of Montana series, the romantic comedy/ cozy mysteries of The Page Turners series, the hunky hockey-playing men in the Bannister family in the Bannister Brothers Books, and the small-town romantic comedies in the Lovestruck series of Cotton Creek Romances.
Jennie loves to hear from readers. Follow her on Facebook at Jennie Marts Books, or Twitter at @JennieMarts. Visit her at www.jenniemarts.com and sign up for her newsletter to keep up with the latest news and releases.