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Review: Gambling on a Secret by Sara Walter Elwood

Gambling on a SecretTitle: Gambling on a Secret
Author: Sara Walter Elwood
Series: Colter Gamblers #1
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Format: eBook
Genre: Contemporary/Suspenseful Romance
Release date: January 7th, 2013
Number of pages: 265


When Charli bets everything on a secret, will she find the deck stacked against her?

Former runaway-turned heiress Charli Monroe is hiding her sordid past and planning a future in Colton, Texas. Attending the local college for a degree in social work, she intends to raise cattle on her newly purchased ranch, which she plans to open as a home for troubled teens. Only a few glitchesùthe Victorian mansion is crumbling, the barn needs a roof, and her oilman neighbor wants more than friendship. When she meets Dylan Quinn, Charli is willing to take a chance on the town drunk to help her rebuild the rundown ranch.

Dylan has his demons, too. The former Special Forces commander can’t get past his ex-wifeÆs betrayal and the botched mission that left him with much more than a bad limp. Certain the greedy oilman next door to Charli wants much more than just her heart, DylanÆs even willing to stop drinking in order to protect her.

When things get dangerous and secrets of the past are revealed, is he only looking out for his new employer, or is she the new start he so desperately needs?

CONTENT WARNING: Details abuse of a minor, drug abuse, alcoholism, swearing, spicy sex, murder.

My Thoughts:

This is the first story of Sara’s that I have read. Set in a cowboy/ranch life with a suspense element which is exactly what I like in a story. I couldn't wait to read it and I definitely wasn't disappointed.
Charli Monroe come to Texas to start over in her disastrous life. The former runaway who inherited the wealth of her grandfather’s ranch, and decides Colton, Texas is the perfect place to raise a few cattle and get her degree in social work to be able to help troubled teens. Needing some help working the ranch and getting the house and other buildings whipped into shape, she is looking to hire a foreman/handyman. In comes Dylan Quinn. Upon first look, he is irresistible. At least in his looks. He is also the town drunk and Charli decides she would rather not hire him and have to deal with his constant issues. She has more important stuff to deal with. But then Charli is finding that she can’t seem to get the broken man out of her mind. So, after some thorough digging about him and his past, she quickly realizes he may just be the perfect person to work her ranch. Now if she can only get her mind out of the gutter when he is around.

Dylan can’t believe his sister set up another interview for him. And he’s not really sure why he actually showed up for this one when he hadn’t any of the others. Upon first seeing the smoking redhead, he is immediately drawn to her but he also decides right off he doesn’t want to work for her. He wants to wallow in his own self pity for a bit more. You see, Dylan is a former military man with a bum him to remind him of the giant mistake he made that he will never be able to forgive himself for. So why can’t he be allowed to wallow in his pity in the bottle of a bottle? That foxy redhead won’t let him that’s why. After figuring out that his step uncle is seemingly interested in more than just her ranch, he decides to accept Charli’s job offer so he can make sure that his uncle doesn’t take another thing that doesn’t belong to him. He just hadn’t planned on not being able to resist Charli.

I really like the pull between Dylan and Charli. They were this magnetic force that wouldn’t be messed with. Even though Charli was being wined and dined by her alluring neighbor, she still found herself wanting Dylan more and more everyday until it turns explosive. And you know what I really liked most about Dylan? He was honest to the core and even though he was clearly still hurting over his recent past, he tried the best he could every day he was around Charli. Of course I know she was the reason for his actions but nonetheless, you have to have a strong will to do so. Oh and the way he took charge when she needed him most was just dreamy.

If you are like me and like a little bit of action thrown in with a smidge of mystery imbedded in a ranching life, you should definitely check out this read. You won’t be disappointed!


*Please bear with me for my laptop crashed and dummy me didn’t back up my rating scale html (head=desk=thud)*

4 Stars and 3 Flames!
It was a great story with the perfect mix of spice, romance, and a little bit of action and intrigue thrown into the mix.

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