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R.C. Ryan

The Legacy of Copper...

Running a ranch is filled with unrelenting work, isolation, harsh elements, and a high risk of failure so it hardly seems like an ideal setting for a novel. However, these same components shape and mold a man’s or woman’s character, imparting determination, resilience, courage, and the appreciation of family. That is why readers are so drawn to books with a western setting. In The Legacy of Copper Creek, hero Whit Mackenzie personifies these characteristic and more. Whit is no stranger to hard work. He has lived all of his life in Montana, surviving twenty hour work days—laboring in blizzards with temperatures below freezing and then under the sweltering, merciless summertime sun. And as for the isolation, as a loner—a trait that made its appearance when he was in his early teens -- Whit welcomes the time alone even though he has a sincere gratitude for his well-meaning, boisterous family. So after spending a long day dropping off hay for his cattle because of an unexpected spring snowstorm, Whit is looking forward to relaxing solitude in one of his family’s remote range shacks. Instead, Whit finds an unauthorized squatter. From the first moment of their charged meeting, Whit felt that sizzle of attraction—he would have had to have been dead not to have been attracted to the half-naked woman with the riotous thick blonde hair, and green eyes. But Cara is a mystery, keeping her secrets close. Still the time spent in the cabin fosters a hint of intimacy that lingers long after they leave. Cara’s mother was only fifteen when she gave birth to her. Raised by her grandmother, Cara’s childhood was filled with unconditional love. But somehow Cara’s life has gotten off track. She almost slipped into an abusive relationship. That experience, plus the lack of progress in her career, leaves her feeling she has to earn people’s regards. But the Mackenzies from the very beginning treat her differently. She is showered with immediate acceptance and regarded like family. It is a heady feeling –this sense of belonging, even if Cara doesn’t believe she deserves it. Whit’s family knows that Whit and Cara are a perfect match. They both are unpretentious with an appreciation for the simple things in life—the beauty of snow-capped mountains and the fun of playing Scrabble. However, unsurprisingly, their romance is complicated and difficult. Bear Mackenzie’s killer is still loose, and trouble follows Cara to her sanctuary. The Legacy of Copper Creek is filled with heartwarming moments –from the no-holds-barred snowball fight between Whit and Cara to the simple family blessing over a home-cooked meal. It is also a story of two deserving people finally finding the “one” amidst danger and menace. It is a book to enjoy on these hot summer nights.

Leigh
Club Reader
1 Member Credit or $14.99
Mariah Stewart

That Chesapeake Summ...

Many authors write appealing characters—characters that are likeable, relatable, and genuine. And many authors write of friendship, family and small town communities. But Mariah Stewart has a distinctive way of writing about them that make her stories exceptional. She creates characters that exude equanimity and courage when facing some of life’s biggest challenges. Not that they are perfect—they’re not-- but ultimately they face life head-on, dealing with their problems in a commendable way. Daniel Sinclair and Jamie Valentine have each had their share of life’s misfortunes. Daniel’s dad died just after he graduated from college, leaving the family business deeply in debt. Daniel took over and made the business viable again, but during that time his wife tragically died, leaving him to raise his two children alone. Daniel filled the emptiness in his life with the business and his children, rather than seek out love again. Jamie Valentine lost her father ten years ago, but her relationship with her mother and aunt sustained her. Now she has to deal with her mother’s death. Along with coping with the grief, she is shocked to have the very foundation of her life rocked when she discovers they lied to her--she was adopted, which she didn't know before. Stunned by this staggering revelation, Jamie wonders how she can reconcile her belief system of family transparency and openness—a principle her parents taught her, with what they have done. She is also consumed with curiosity about her natural parents. This part of the story was handled so beautifully. Jamie is hurt and confused, wondering why her parents never trusted her with this information. But she never forgets or discounts the love they gave her. She tries to understand their fears, and respect why they did what they did, but she ultimately concludes that now, she has to do what feels right to her. So she travels to St. Dennis—the only clue she has about her mother. And it is there that she meets Daniel. Against the backdrop of this charming community filled with recognized and favorite characters, Daniel and Jamie began their own special courtship dance, even though they’re out of sync. Jamie’s life is in too much of an upheaval to contemplate beginning any type of relationship. And Daniel—he has filled his life to the brim with work, refusing to delegate even the smallest chore. But their attraction is stronger than their reservations. Stewart successfully merges all the threads-- the budding relationship between Daniel and Jamie; the mystery of Jamie’s parentage, the exploration of honesty and the need for secrets-- giving the reader a wonderful story of love, forgiveness, and new beginnings.

Leigh
Club Reader
1 Member Credit or $14.99
Carla Norton
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Linwood Barclay
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Linda Castillo
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Ace Atkins
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Anna Lee Huber
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Michael Hiebert
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Kate White
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Dorothy Garlock
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Diana Palmer
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Carola Dunn
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Jenny Milchman
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Lisa Jackson
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Laura Levine
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Sara Paretsky
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Susan Mallery
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Kate Forsyth
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Marian Keyes
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Susan Mallery
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Jayne Castle
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Elizabeth Lowell
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J.R. Ward
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Mary Kubica
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Christine Feehan
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Kaki Warner
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Denise Grover Swank
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Cathy Woodman
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Alex Kava
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Heather Graham
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Elizabeth Perona
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Kathy Reichs
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Brad Thor
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Lee Robinson
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Jenny Milchman
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Robyn Carr
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Stuart Woods
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Brad Meltzer
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Maggie Sefton
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Sheila Connolly
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Danielle Steel
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Janet Evanovich
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Stephen King
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Judy Blume
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Lawrence H. Levy
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Jefferson Bass
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Janet Evanovich
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Christine Carbo
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D.A. Keeley
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