This time out, I have the anthology Be My Texas Valentine (Zebra, purchased) with stories from Jodi Thomas, DeWanna Pace, Linda Broday, and Phyliss Miranda. When these ladies team up, readers are guaranteed a collection of great historical western romances. Thomas kicks things off with “The Valentine’s Curse” and Brody Monroe doing his best to keep to himself on the Texas ranch where he’s working. He might know his job, but the fact that he’s a Yankee after the Civil War doesn’t make some of his co-workers inclined to think well of him. It’s impossible to stay away, however, when his boss’s wife demands all the hands put in an appearance at their annual Valentine’s Day dance, and Brody gets elected to sit with the cursed Widow Allen. Rumor has it that it’s her fault her husbands died, and even other men who’ve been hurt or become sick after having contact with her. Valerie Allen just wants to be left alone, though the handsome cowboy who sits with her during the dance, and then kisses her in the night is different from the other men in the area. By chance, they meet up again, and Valerie makes an unexpected offer that will change both of their lives more than she could have imagined. Broday’s “Cupid’s Arrow” is next with Rue Ann Spencer about to be married when her first love Logan Cutter comes back into her life. And now that Rue Ann is back, Logan is determined to make sure she knows exactly the sort of man her fiancé really is, and he may have a little help from a secret Cupid or two. “Loving Miss Laurel” from Miranda has Laurel Dean Womack back in town, just in time to put a stop to plans by the town’s men to bring a railroad into town rather than a new library. Hunter Campbell isn’t unhappy that Laurel is back, but it seems they’re very firmly on opposite sides of the issue. That doesn’t mean they can’t figure out a compromise, though. Pace’s “Sweet Talk” wraps things up with Dr. Noah Powell under the influence of an unknown matchmaker when his lovebird needs a mate, and JoEmma Brown might just have the cure for them both. I loved the stories by Jodi Thomas and DeWanna Pace. Thomas’s characters are always terrific; I just wished for more time with this pair. And Pace’s heroine is terrific, and her lovebirds are adorable. I also enjoyed Broday’s story, and its pair of meddling matchmakers who want to make certain of the happy ending for Rue Ann and Logan. I’m borrowing four and a half of Cupid’s five arrows for this anthology. It’s terrific.
Until next time, happy reading!
Romance Novels Forum