cover image Country Roads

Country Roads

Nancy Herkness. Amazon/Montlake Romance, $12.95 trade paper (430p) ISBN 978-1-47

Julia Castillo is stranded on a dusty road, just three miles outside of the small West Virginia town of Sanctuary, where she hopes to reconnect with the first gallery owner who believed in her equestrian paintings. Luckily, lawyer Paul Taggart can’t resist a damsel in distress, so he picks her up, delivers her well-received art, and then proceeds to sweep Julia off her feet. Paul is determined not to get attached to Julia because his family responsibilities prevent him from leaving Sanctuary. Julia wants to change Paul’s mind, but she’s scared to reveal a medical condition that could make him treat her differently. Julia and Paul’s romance is fun and the book moves along at a nice clip, but Herkness’s second Whisper Horse contemporary (after Take Me Home) relies a bit too much on her goofy premise that every person has a special horse who becomes their confidant, and there’s no clear reason why Julia’s medical history should hold her back from a normal life. Agent: Jane Dystel, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management. (Sept.)