Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Samhain Publishing
Released on January 5, 2010
I have tried the Rough Riders series a few different times and never quite got into the books I seemed to choose. So recently when Samhain made the decision to close it doors, I picked up as many books in this series as I could and decided I was going to give it a go again. They didn’t have any of the books before #6 in the series, so this is where I am beginning, Branded as Trouble.
India Ellison isn’t the heroine I expected when I started this book, which is a good thing. She is a tattooed and pierced woman who had survived some Hellish scenarios and has earned some peace. She sponsors other recovering addicts including the hero Colt McKay. India isn’t quite the towns style, but she is Colt’s. She’s clean and thinks she has it all under control, but her attraction to her best buddy could breach even her own calm.
Colt McKay is an addict. Hitting rock bottom was the worst and best thing to happen. With India as his sponsor, he continues to go to meetings and change his life for the better. Not only has he been drug and alcohol free, he has been sex free. Now he wants to end all that with the one woman he cares about above all others, India.
The two have been best friends and support for each other, but neither wants to admit it. Colt goes on a date, India gets jealous and suddenly they are a couple that the town doesn’t want to see and neither does Mama McKay. At tough times they both fight the internal addiction they have, calling on others to help is the core of the A.A. process when faced with temptations they cannot face on their own.
What continues to be a problem for me in the few books I have read are just what assholes the McKays seem to be to one another. Colt bought some land that panned out to make him money. He gets addicted and hurts a lot of people, but do the ones that are family stand by him to help him get better? Nope. They resent him and leave him to go deeper and deeper. Only one brother and maybe 2 cousins actually give a crap about him. So I can’t say I am a fan of this family. If my brother were ever an addict, I would be there to find him help and support him.
India only has her sister who has some adorable little girls with one of Colt’s cousins. Her sister is there for her like family should be. It doesn’t matter how many tattoos or piercings India has, she has her family. This doesn’t mean she isn’t stressed or tempted, it just means her family is way better than Colt’s.
The story grabbed me on just how honest these two are, but at the same time fooling their own selves. Get ready for some bullets in the ass, pregnancy scares, family meltdowns and some cowboys to liven up your fantasy life. This was a wonderful book that was true to the message it was sending without being to preachy. Glad I am giving this series another try.