Darn Good Cowboy Christmas
Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publish Date: October 1, 2011
Born and raised in a traveling carnival, all Liz Hanson ever wanted for Christmas was a home that didn't have wheels. After she was old enough to date she added one more item: a sexy cowboy.
She's about given up on Santa ever bringing either one when her father dies and leaves her an ugly house and twenty acres in Texas. Then rancher Raylen O'Donnell walks onto her property...
Lizelle Hanson is a carnie, as she calls herself. She traveled and worked as a fortune teller and belly dancer for most of her life. But what she always wanted was roots; somewhere to call home, a house that has a foundation and not wheels. In fact, that is a Christmas wish that she has; she wants a house and a cowboy. The first part of her wish comes true when her uncle moves out of his house to take care of his father and is going to leave it to her if she still wants to live there after she tries it out for a few months. Liz is ecstatic. She arrives at the house in Texas to find her uncle’s neighbor, Raylen O’Donnell, there. He is the very cowboy that she had a crush on when she used to visit her uncle, and she has been fantasizing about him for years. Could this be the second half of her wish coming true?
This is the first book that I haven’t finished since I started reviewing. I definitely gave it a chance though; I read to page 225. Besides just not being interesting, there were a lot of things that bothered me about this book.
First, the shifting of the characters points of view. There was constant shifting with no clear breaks. It gets very confusing, especially if the shift happens within a single paragraph, which it did!
Second, the repeating of thoughts. Liz would think a thought, and then say the thought out loud to someone else. Then she would repeat it later to another character. I get how perhaps the author is trying to show how the third character found out about what she was thinking, but this isn’t the way to do it.
Third, Liz’s character herself. She would ramble a lot, and it just wasn’t attractive to me. Also, everything was handed to her on a silver platter. Where’s the challenge? She wants a house, gets it from her uncle. Wants a job, gets one handed to her right when she moves to town. Wants to decorate her house like the Griswold’s, the neighbors pitch right in to help. It was annoying. I feel like she acted very juvenile too. Here’s Liz talking to Raylen about what kind of Christmas tree she wants.
“I want a real one but Momma reminded me that I’m allergic to cedar and pine trees. Do you think they’ll have one that doesn’t look perfect? I want it to look real even if it’s not.” (p. 181)I guess I just feel like a grown woman should know what she was allergic to. It wasn’t just that though, it was all things like I listed above.
I can’t imagine the work it takes a write a book, I really can’t. But Darn Good Cowboy Christmas was not worth the read.