Thursday, May 26, 2016

Virtual Tour - MONTANA HEARTS:TRUE COUNTRY HERO (Montana Hearts, #3) by Darlene Panzera

 
Montana Hearts: True Country Hero
Montana Hearts, #3
by Darlene Panzera
Released May 17th 2016
Avon Impulse


From The Book Junkie Reads . . . True Country Hero (Montana Hearts, #3) . . .
A little twits here. A small turn there. Deep, relatable, understanding characters with heart, soul, and real life insecurities and problems. I found myself getting drawn in by the issues being thrown at Delaney and her family. I found that I could question how this or that would be solved or confronted.  I greatly enjoyed watching her grew in her self-confidence, problem solving, and just as a mother and person. Watching the growth of her romance with Jace was pleasant and not like a freight train barreling down the track at full speed. 

Jace was just a man. A man laid humble due to an accident that has set his life on a slightly differnt path. A path the brought him in contact with single mother Delaney. Over the course of time their relationship grows and blooms into much more. Their romance was sweet. Their journey was a bit suspenseful. The setting warm, welcoming, and filled with beautiful landscaping.

I have read none of the previous books because this was my first introduction to Darlene Panzera. I found this read to be a good standalone but with the other characters around my curiosity has been piqued to see what there stories had to offer the series. I would love to have the background of the proceeding stories to make this one that much more enjoyable. Montana Hearts seem to put heart in the slow drive to romance. By building a strong background to make a lasting relationship.
**This ARC was provided via HaperCollins Publishing in exchange for an honest review.**

Montana Hearts series:
Her Weekend Wrangler – Montana Hearts, #1
Sweet Talkin’ Cowboy – Montana Hearts, #2
True Country Hero – Montana Hearts, #3

Blurb
In the third heartwarming installment of Darlene Panzera’s Montana Hearts series, a hot-shot rodeo star tries to win the tender heart of his biggest critic


For Jace Aldridge, the chase is half the fun. The famous rodeo rider has spent most of life chasing down steers and championship rodeo belts, but after an accident in the arena, his career is put on temporary hold. When he’s offered a chance to stay at Collins Country Cabins, Jace jumps at the opportunity to spend more time with the beautiful but wary Delaney Collins.

Between trying to make her family’s business a success, raising her daughter single-handedly, and volunteering at the local wildlife shelter, Delaney doesn’t have time for love. Even though she’s determined to not let the handsome cowboy under her skin, Delaney can’t deny how much she looks forward to every day with him. She's determined to be friends with the handsome cowboy, nothing more, even though Delaney's heart flutters every time he draws near.

But all is not well in Fox Creek and when a violent poaching ring escalates out of control, Delaney must trust that Jace is the true country hero she hopes he is.
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10 Fun Facts About Rodeo Cowboys
In my new release, Montana Hearts: True Country Hero, rodeo champion Jace Aldridge comes to stay at Collins Country Cabins and meets Delaney, a beautiful, sweet, single mother of a two-year-old. He needs her to help heal his injured horse. She needs his endorsement to save her family from financial ruin. Jace also hopes to win her heart, but Delaney isn't too keen on rodeo cowboys. She thinks they have large egos to match their over-sized belt buckles. Can Jace convince her otherwise?

As an author I've had so much fun writing about cowboys in this series. How many of the facts below did you already know?
1. The term "rodeo" comes from the Spanish word "rodear" which means 'to surround.'

2. Rodeo is a competitive sport that originated from the techniques cowboys used on the ranch to round up cattle when an animal required medical attention.

3. Rodeo clowns aren't just in the arena to entertain the crowd. They are highly skilled athletes whose top priority is to distract the bull when a cowboy falls so the cowboy can escape unharmed.

4. William F. Cody, also known as Buffalo Bill, organized the first U.S. rodeo and wild west show in Nebraska in 1882.

5. Another term for steer wrestling is "bull dogging." Some claim the event started in the 1930's when Bill Pickett, a Wild West Show performer is said to have caught a runaway steer by wrestling it to the ground. Others say he developed the idea after watching cattle dogs work with feisty animals.  

6. Human skin is 1mm-2mm thick, horsehide is 5mm thick, and bull hide is 7mm thick.

7. The harder a bull bucks, the higher the cowboy's score, with 100 points being the highest.

8. A cowboy's belt buckle is for more than just holding one's pants together. It is usually a trophy they win in competition to show off their accomplishments. Before the 1920's most cowboys wore suspenders or a type of belt that did not require a belt buckle. 

9. The first real cowboy hat was created by John B. Stetson in 1865.This hat, with its high crown and wide brim, was called "Boss of the Plains," and could protect one's eyes from the sun's glare. The hat could also be used as a cup to scoop up water, or as a pillow, if folded over.

10. Cowboys often sang to the cattle they guarded at night to keep them calm. They worried about the danger of stampede from thunder and lightning or other unexpected noises, and singing calmed jittery cows. 


The cowboy winked at her.  Delaney Collins lowered her camera lens and glanced around twice to make sure, but no one else behind the roping chute was looking his direction. Heat flooded her cheeks as he followed up the wink with a grin, and a multitude of wary warnings sounded off in her heart. The last thing she’d wanted was to catch the rodeo circuit star’s interest. She pretended to adjust the settings, then raised the camera to her eye once again, determined to fulfill her duty and take the required photos of the handsome dark-haired devil.
Except he wouldn’t stand still. He climbed off his buckskin horse, handed the reins to a nearby gatekeeper, gave a young kid in the stands a high five, and then walked straight toward her.
Delaney tightened her hold on the camera, wishing she could stay hidden behind the lens, and considered several different ways to slip away unnoticed. But she knew she couldn’t avoid him forever. Not when it was her job to shadow the guy and capture the highlights from his steer-wrestling runs. Maybe he only wanted to check in to make sure she was getting the right shots?
Most cowboys like Jace Aldridge had large egos to match their championship-sized belt buckles, one reason she usually avoided these events and preferred capturing images of plants and animals. But when the lead photographer for True Montana Magazine called in sick before the event and they needed a fill-in, Delaney had been both honored and excited to accept the position. Perhaps after the magazine viewed her work, they’d hire her for more photo ops. Then she wouldn’t have to rely solely on the profits from her share of her family’s guest ranch to support herself.
She swallowed hard as the stocky, dark-haired figure, whose image continuously graced the cover of every western periodical, smiled, his eyes on her—yes, definitely her—as he drew near.
He stretched out his hand. “Jace Aldridge.”
She stared at his chapped knuckles. Beside her, Sammy Jo gave her arm a discreet nudge, urging her to accept his handshake. After all, it would be impolite to refuse. Even if, in addition to riding rodeo, he was a hunter, an adversary of the animals she and her wildlife rescue group regularly sought to save.
Lifting her gaze to meet his, she replied, “Delaney Collins.”
“Nice to meet you,” Jace said, his rich, baritone voice smooth and … dangerously distracting. His hand gave hers a warm squeeze, and although he glanced toward Sammy Jo to include her in his greeting, it was clear who held his real interest. “Are you with the press?”
Delaney glanced down at the Canon EOS 7D with its high-definition 20.2 megapixel zoom lens hanging down from the strap around her neck. “Yes. I’m taking photos for True Montana.”
The edges of his mouth curved into another smile. “I haven’t seen you around before.”
“I—I’m not around much, but Sammy Jo here,” she said, motioning toward her friend to divert his attention, “used to race barrels. You must know her. Sammy Jo Macpherson?”
Jace gave her friend a brief nod. “I believe we’ve met.”
“Del’s a great photographer,” Sammy Jo said, bouncing the attention back to her.
Jace grinned. “I bet.”
“It’s the lens,” Delaney said, averting her gaze, and Sammy Jo shot her a disgruntled look as if to say, Smarten up, this guy’s into you. Don’t blow it!
Except she had no desire to get involved in a relationship right now. And definitely not one with a hunter. She needed to focus on her two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Meghan, and help her family’s guest ranch bring in enough money to support them. Especially since her ex-husband hadn’t made a child support payment for the last nine months. The money she did make she spent on lawyer fees trying to sort it all out.
Jace pulled his straw hat off his head and held the brim flat against his chest. “What are you two lovely ladies doing after—”
“Hey, Aldridge,” a balding, middle-aged man with gray sideburns cut in with a shout. “Have you given any more thought to my offer to come hunt big game this fall?”
Delaney stiffened as Gavin McKinley joined them. His property lay a short distance down the trail behind her family’s ranch and sometimes he crossed the line. In more ways than one.
“Don’t have the time,” Jace told him, then turned his attention back to her. “Del—”
“Delaney Collins,” Gavin exclaimed, interrupting again. “Is that you?”
She’d already taken three steps back, hoping she could slink off while the others were talking, but she hadn’t been fast enough. Gavin grabbed hold of her arm and spun her around. “It is you. I suppose you’ll need to pick up some extra photography jobs now that Labor Day’s approaching. Isn’t Collins Country Cabins about ready to close up for the season?”
Delaney shook her head. “No. Actually, we’ve decided to stay open during the fall this year.”
“Stay open?” Gavin’s jaw dropped and he squinted at her as if he hadn’t heard her right. “What for? Is your family trying to steal my business?”
“My family does not steal.” Delaney swallowed the bitter saliva gathering at the back of her throat.
He also rented out guest cabins, not nearly as nice as her family’s, but perfect for the barbarian hunters he housed, equipped, and led on backcountry expeditions.
Jace stepped between them, forcing Gavin to drop his arm away from her. “Mr. McKinley, you’ll have to excuse us. I’m scheduled for a private photo shoot before it’s my turn to compete and we only have twenty minutes.”
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Who's Who in Montana Hearts: True Country Hero
I am so excited to share the release of the third book in my Montana Hearts series with you! The characters have become dear to my heart and I hope you will love this suspenseful, fun-loving romance as much as I have. First, let me introduce you!

Jace Aldridge—He's a rodeo champion whose over-confidence leads to an accident in the arena which injures his trusted horse, Rio. Now he must find a local ranch in Montana with an empty stall where his 4-legged friend can heal. Jace also hopes to win the affection of Delaney, the sweet blonde photographer, who with the click of her camera not only captured his image, but his heart.

Delaney Collins—Recently divorced and youngest of the 3 adult siblings to return to her family's guest ranch when their father is injured, her primary focus is providing for her young daughter. But when her family insists she invite the flirtatious rodeo cowboy to stay at their ranch, her heart softens toward Jace, even though there are rivals trying their best to keep them apart.

Meghan—Almost three, she knows a thing or two about saving animals from her mother, but is naive enough to befriend the fun, playful cowboy who makes her laugh, plays games, and gives her piggy-back rides...until Jace leaves, and there's no guarantee he'll come back.

Jed Collins—Delaney's father is glad his children have come home to operate the ranch as equal partners, even if he has a hard time showing it. He's always believed things must be done his way, but when poachers threaten the family, he fears for their safety and realizes he might have to rely on others for protection.

Gavin McKinley—Both neighbor and rival outdoor outfitter, it's unclear if the sheriff's son is friend or foe. He makes no secret of the fact he'd like to get his hands on the Collins land, but he appears as disturbed as they when a third outfitter moves into the area.

Ryan Tanner—At first Jace thinks he's a ranch hand, then finds the wrangler is engaged to Delaney's sister, Bree. But it isn't until Jace discovers the man is his own long-lost cousin that he understands why Ryan is looking at him funny. This leads Jace to question what other secrets his mother, who is running for Governor, has kept from him?
And does it have anything to do with the danger threatening him and Delaney?


Thank you for reading! Please leave a comment below and answer the question: Who is your favorite fictional character of all time?

Author Info
DARLENE PANZERA
 writes sweet, fun-loving romance and is a member of the Romance Writers of America’s Greater Seattle chapter. Her career launched when her novella “The Bet” was picked by Avon Books and New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber to be published within Debbie’s own novel, Family Affair. Darlene says, “I love writing stories that help inspire people to laugh, value relationships, and pursue their dreams.” Born and raised in New Jersey, Darlene is now a resident of the Pacific Northwest, where she lives with her husband and three children. When not writing she enjoys spending time with her family and her two horses, and loves camping, hiking, photography, and lazy days at the lake.
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