cover image Colorado Cowboy

Colorado Cowboy

Sara Richardson. Forever, $7.99 mass market (448p) ISBN 978-1-5387-1227-6

Richardson’s Rocky Mountain Riders series (True-Blue Cowboy) gains a worthy addition with the expertly characterized and emotionally satisfying story of a barrel racer determined to guard her heart and the small-town cop who hopes to win it. Working in a male-dominated sport has made Charity Stone cautious about relationships, but Dev Jenkins, a Topaz Falls, Colo., police officer, has long nursed a crush on her and aims to draw her out. Then Charity’s long-estranged sister, Melody, drops her 13-year-old son, Bodie, on Charity’s doorstep and disappears, leaving Charity at a loss. After her own crappy childhood, she has no idea how to be a positive role model for her nephew. Dev has his own inner demons as an adoptee who has always felt unworthy of love (a premise that may discomfit some readers). As Charity and Dev grow closer, together they provide the stability Bodie’s never had—but then Melody returns to Topaz Falls. Readers who love tear-jerking small-town romances with minimal sex scenes and maximum emotional intimacy will quickly devour this charming installment. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary & Media. (Apr.)