Cowboy’s Texas Rescue by Beth Cornelison

cowboy's texas rescue

Title: Cowboy’s Texas Rescue

Author: Beth Cornelison

Mills & Boon imprint: Romantic Suspense

Year of publication: 2013

The heroine: Phlebotomist Chelsea Harris

The hero: Black ops soldier Jake Connelly

The blurb: Taking out bad guys is in Jake Connelly’s DNA, so is rescuing women like Chelsea Harris, who was kidnapped by a brutal escaped convict. What isn’t in the cowboy hunk’s DNA, Chelsea fears, is an interest in relationships – especially with a jilted size-fourteen plain Jane like herself.

With the killer on the loose and a Texas-size blizzard raging, Jake and Chelsea take refuge in an icy farmhouse. Sudden sparks between them turn on plenty of heat! But Jake needs to stay focused to stop the convict’s reign of terror – and protect Chelsea from the danger of falling for him…

Standalone or series: This is part of the Black Ops Rescues series, but can be read as a standalone.

The review: First, and most importantly – let’s hear it for Ms Cornelison and her size fourteen, kickass heroine. How refreshing to have a woman with curves, love handles and cellulite. And how normal for her to struggle with her weight, especially since her douchbag ex dumped her for putting on weight while dealing with her mother’s cancer. I also cheered at our hero, who wasn’t the least bit fazed by Chelsea’s weight and instead enjoyed her curves.

Chelsea is kidnapped by an escaped inmate while stopping for gas on the way to her parents’ house, which she’s looking after while they’re on holidays. Jake is on his way to Amarillo to see his father, hospitalised after a heart attack. Jake sees Chelsea’s car on the side of the road and notices the strange man in the car (the car ran out of gas because Chelsea never got a chance to fill it up before being kidnapped), so he finds himself stopping, unable to leave anyone stranded with the coming snowstorm. Once he gets closer, all hell breaks loose and the killer manages to escape.

Jake and Chelsea hole up in her neighbour’s farmhouse when the snowstorm hits, and sparks fly. Eventually, they track the killer to her parents’ house, and in the ensuing battle Jake is shot. They hide in the basement where they make sweet love, and then Chelsea makes a run for it to get help. Jake’s buddies, Daniel Lacroix and Alec Kincaid, come to the rescue after Daniel hears Jake being shot on the phone, and eventually Jake and Chelsea are rescued.

Jake became a soldier to make a difference, and for redemption after his mother was murdered when he was a teenager (he should have been with her, but decided not to go on the trip because he had a new girlfriend). His guilt has meant he doesn’t allow himself to think about settling down and having a family, not while there’s evil in the world to fight. But when he meets Chelsea, who thinks she’s too fat to ever attract a man like Jake, everything changes for him.

Here’s what didn’t work for me: after falling in love in two days (I’m not saying that couldn’t happen, especially given what they went through) they are separated for nine months. Nine whole months, and they’re still desperately in love with each other. I understand they were separated for a reason (he had to recuperate and then went on a six month mission), but that seemed like such a long time when they’d only been together for two days.

It was good to see Alec and Daniel pop up, as did Alec’s wife Erin and their baby. But right at the end, Jake commits what I think is a cardinal sin: he proposes at Daniel’s wedding after Chelsea finds the ring box in his pocket. It’s a personal quirk, I know, but I hate people who do that – the day should always be about the bride and groom, unless they’ve given express permission for it to happen.

All things considered, I enjoyed the book 🙂

Soldier’s Pregnancy Protocol by Beth Cornelison

soldier's pregnancy protocol

Title: Soldier’s Pregnancy Protocol

Author: Beth Cornelison

Mills & Boon imprint: Romantic Suspense

Year of publication: 2012

The heroine: Teacher Erin Bauer

The hero: Black Ops soldier Alec Kincaid

The blurb: Survival. Danger. Living on the edge. It’s what Alec Kincaid is all about. But crawling on his belly through the South American jungle is child’s play next to babysitting a mother-to-be. But safeguarding Erin Bauer and her baby is Alec’s top priority. Only, now the Special Ops soldier is falling for this brave, vulnerable woman with the melting mahogany eyes…

Alone with Alec in a remote mountain hideaway, Erin knows her life depends on the rugged, enigmatic stranger. Alex makes her feel protected. Cherished. Complete. But how much is she willing to risk for a love that could give them both what they desire most?

Standalone or series: This is part of the Black Ops Rescues series, but can be read as a standalone.

The review: I really enjoyed this book. There’s a lot to like about Erin and Alec, and the way they meet is quite clever – Erin buys Alec’s old house and gets embroiled in his quest to find his special ops partner and best friend, Daniel, who disappeared nine months previously while they were in South America on a mission.

Erin is fourteen weeks pregnant to the adrenaline junkie husband who died two years previously, thanks to the miracle of modern science. As Erin spends more time with Alec, she can’t help but compare him to her dead husband, whom she comes to realise cared more about himself than her. Bradley never put her first, as Alec continues to do, and so when Alec needs her help the most, Erin faces her greatest fear to save him.

Meanwhile Alec comes to realise that the more time he spends with Erin, the lonelier he feels and the more he wants what he’s never had – someone who loves him and cares for him, a family.

As for the title? Bad Mills & Boon. No biscuit.