Review by Veronica

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Series Name: The Mountain Monroes, #9 

“A hint of a smile. That’s all it took to make Bentley want to forget Tanner’s claims and bring the rides back to life, if only to please this cowgirl. It made no sense. No sense.”

Cassie Diaz loves being a cowgirl and training horses. But Cassie has a secret; a bull-riding accident may have stolen her dream of being a mother. The doctors tell Cassie she needs to rest to recover fully, but there is no way she can do that because her family ranch is in trouble. Bentley Monroe has just arrived at Second Chance and offers to help Cassie while she recovers. Cassie is drawn to his quiet strength, and loving him makes her feel safe and happy. But the two of them are unsure what their futures hold and whether they will be together for it.

There are times when all I need is a sweet country read to soothe my soul, and A Cowgirl’s Secret did just that. This book is the ninth book in The Mountain Monroe series. If you are like me and haven’t read any of the previous books in the series, don’t worry. I was still able to enjoy the story and its characters and understand what was happening in the book. There were times when I felt like I was missing some of the characters’ backstories, but it did not hinder my enjoyment of the book. If anything, I now want to get my hands on the previous eight books because I want to spend more time in the tiny town of Second Chance and get to know the character better. 

This book has a nice slow pace, and the storyline is what I would expect from a Harlequin Heartwarming book. I kind of loved the fact that I knew what would happen, and I could just sit back and enjoy the story. Cassie was a fantastic main character; she was as tough as nails and kind to those around her. 

This book is a “clean romance,” which means that the steam level is pretty much non-existent. The characters hug, kiss, and hold hands, and that’s it. If you are looking for something with a bit more steam, this book probably isn’t for you. I liked the relationship between Cassie and Bentley. It had a sweetness to it that melted my heart. If I had one wish, it would be that there were more scenes between these two. I sometimes felt that their relationship got pushed to the side because the author shifted focus to a secondary storyline, which I didn’t like. I thought more attention could have been given to this couple.  

The one thing I didn’t like about this book was Shane Monroe, Bentley’s cousin. I could not stand the man. I thought he was manipulative, self-serving, and not considerate. He is supposed to be one of the “good guys” in the book, and I found myself wishing someone would knock him off his pedestal. The kiddos and animals stole the spotlight in this book. They were all just so darn adorable, and I couldn’t help but laugh at some of the things those kids and animals do.  

This book is a sweet, fun, simple read if you are looking to escape for an afternoon.

Thank you HARLEQUIN Romance for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.