Rating: 4 stars out of 5
It might be a sham to his boss, but it’s all too real to him.
Administrative assistant Jonah Hollis has nurtured a hopeless crush on his boss, millionaire cattle rancher Lincoln Courtwright, ever since he started working for him. But hope is kindled when Linc and beautiful rodeo star Melissa Cutler break up just weeks before the biggest event of the Dallas social season, the Cattle Baron’s Ball, and Linc asks Jonah to accompany him in her place.
Is it all a ploy to make Melissa jealous? Can Jonah fit into Linc’s world? It takes some encouragement from his roommates and his best friend, Caylee, for Jonah to agree. Before long, Jonah dares to believe Linc might just feel something for him… until interfering family and a series of misunderstandings threaten his fragile dream of happiness.
The Cattle Baron’s Bogus Boyfriend by Nicki Bennett is another adorable romance from Dreamspinner Press’ Dreamspun Desires series. With a plot that’s a throwback to those sixties romance movies and novels, assistance Jonah has fallen in love with his handsome, supposedly ‘straight’ cowboy CEO boss, Lincoln ” Linc “Courtwright. Jonah has made himself indispensable to his boss, working long hours and even buying the gifts for his girlfriend, Melissa.
Yes, the story is running true to form and I am loving every word of it. Why? Because of the characters. Jonah is a gem of the character. From the description above, some of you might be thinking doormat but that’s hardly the case. Jonah, as written by Nicki Bennett, is intelligent, wry, funny and very self aware of the situation he’s in. Not a typical 60’s romance character. I adore him. Plus the author has surrounded Jonah with a group of friends/housemates that are as lively and wonderful a support family as you could ask for. Honestly, I want Wes’ story next, along with the rest.
But the character of Linc is no slouch. He’s the tall, dark, handsome love interest. A cowboy who is rich, owns a large Texas ranch, oil…yes, I know, heard it all before. Yet, I loved Linc too. Once the author started the conversations going between Linc and Jonah, Linc became more of a believable person and less a Ken doll, which may have been the author’s goal for us and Jonah all along. To show us the real person behind the facade she originally presents us with.
There are some other plot lines with Jonah’s parents, small town homophobia and a long time best friend. They were nicely handled but some of it felt almost too “pushed” into the story to feel part of the natural flow of the narrative. Drama needed? Boom, there it was. Doesn’t mean I didn’t like the epilogue because I really did.
The only thing too contrived for me? The part of the story used as the major drama point in the plot. I thought the character of Jonah would have been too smart for the actions that followed, but perhaps that was just me.
That aside, I adored this story, the characters and yes, the HEA. The Cattle Baron’s Bogus Boyfriend by Nicki Bennett is just the story for you if you love a sweet romance, terrific characters and a wonderful surrounding cast. I would love for Nicki Bennett to give Wes his story too. Perhaps more. This is a universe that cries out for a series. I hope the author is listening.
Cover art by Paul Richmond. I love this series and its covers. They are perfect in tone, design and grab my heart as well as my attention.
Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | ARe | Amazon
ebook, Dreamspun Desires #10, 216 pages
Published May 15th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
Original TitleThe Cattle Baron’s Bogus Boyfriend