Tuesday, November 15, 2016

My Cowboy Freedom by Z.A. Maxfield

Title: My Cowboy Freedom
Author: Z.A. Maxfield
My Rating: B+

Genre: Contemporary Romance  (m/m)
Series: The Cowboys #5 (?)
Main Characters: Rock and Sky
Release Date: November 2016
Publisher:  InterMix
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: spicy

Story Overview:
The author of My Cowboy Promises and My Cowboy Homecoming returns once again to the Rocking C Ranch...
After doing time, Skyler is used to fighting for everything he wants, and what he wants most is a job at the Rocking C. But Sky's boss Sterling Chandler is a vocal homophobe and his men don’t necessarily trust an ex-con. Sky’s willing to overlook their attitude. It’s enough to be back outside, working in the open air. He wants to put his past behind him and he plans to mind his own business; hopefully, the men he works with will do the same. That doesn’t mean he wouldn’t like a friend—especially one like shy giant Rock Evans. 
Rock does his best to stay away from Sky. Rock’s a gentle man with a big heart and the tattooed wrangler scares him. Forced to work side by side, they start falling for each other. When Chandler suffers a massive stroke, Rock and Sky must work together to save the boss’s life and run his ranch. Can Sky’s hard work and Rock’s Texas-sized heart teach Chandler that love will always save the day?

My Review:
I'm a newcomer to this series by Z.A. Maxfield so I wasn't sure what to expect although the story line for this book appealed to me. I was not disappointed. 

In fact, I found myself enthralled by Sky and Rock's story. Wow...I loved the parallels the author drew between their lives. At 18, they both had something incredibly traumatic happen to them. For Sky, he killed his stepfather and went to prison. For Rock, he got struck by a bolt of lightning on the football field and became somewhat imprisoned by his brain. And they are both still dealing with the repercussions of those events. As a result, there are people who have power over both of them who don't think they should be gay. This is REALLY not a good place to be for either Sky or Rock and I had no idea how the author was going to believable sort out of the conundrum they're in. But she did and she wrote it brilliantly. 

I loved these two main characters, as well as Maisey, Rock's service dog. In fact the entire cast of characters in the book is very diverse and interesting. My only real complaint was that, especially in the first half of the book, it felt like the characters weren't well-established in the author's head because they'd say or do one thing and then completely flipflop in the next sentence with no explanation as to why. That was really distracting from a really excellent story line. 

And it is a good story. There is no simple fix for these guys. Yes, they want one another and are both adults, but it's simply not that easy for where they live and their pasts. There's also a good dose of realism to the story. Sky spent 8 years in prison...that has left it's scars on him, and certainly didn't give him a happy back story. I also really liked the realizations that Rock had at the end about Sky's family situation. Like I said...it added a realistic bent to the story without ruining the romance. 

I enjoyed this book and found myself really curious about Andi, Ryder and Doc. I think I may have to backtrack in the series some...

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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