(The Cowboys Series, Book #4)
By Z.A. Maxfield
A real man needs a real love…
To become the man he’s meant to be, one cowboy will have to be the man he never wanted anyone to know he was…
Ryder Dent is a true-blue cowboy. A devoted son, husband and father, but one who is living a costly lie. When they were both young, Ryder and his closest female friend Andy thought they’d found the perfect solution to both their problems—she was single and pregnant, and he was secretly gay—so they got married and raised Jonas together.
When Ryder gets hurt at a party, his son’s new pediatrician comes to the rescue. The connection between Ryder and Dr. Declan Winters is sudden, powerful, and undeniable. Ryder loves Andy and the family they’ve created together—but they both need more. Can they pursue their hearts’ desire without destroying the life they’ve built and losing the son they love?
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3.75 out of 5 stars
My Cowboy Promises is the 4th book in The Cowboy series. This is the first book that I've read from this author and while it was part of the series I didn't seem to lose anything in regards to storyline. It reads as a standalone romance.
I'll admit I was a bit hesitant over the storyline for this book as I'm generally not a fan of gay characters playing it straight and denying who they are to everyone. This was more than that because it was a story of creating the family we want and need to have around us. In Ryder and Andy's case both came from families that weren't able to show affection and love and as friends they gravitated to each other to fill that need.
Ryder's taken on so much at a young age that he's not really had a chance to live his life. His friends have all mostly moved on to their own thing while he'd rearranged his life to provide for Jonas and Andy. I loved Ryder interacting with Jonas, it was so sweet and adorable that I almost resented when Andy would show up on scene. Then Ryder meets the new doc in town, Declan and so many things seem to change for him. In some ways Ryder panics over how he feels because he's shoved that part of himself into the furthest available spot so he won't want those feelings. He can't help it though with Declan, because he's just that perfect person for him.
For me, I enjoyed the storyline but I did have some issues with how things played out and that the ending wasn't really an HEA or even an HFN. And this kind of storyline lends itself to the possibility of not providing a reader with an HEA or HFN at the end of the book. I'm not sure if the author has plans to write an additional story for Declan and Ryder or if we'll see more of them over the other books in the series. So in that it left me feeling that the story was incomplete enough to get a little frustrated at the end.
Now that being said, I encourage each reader to make their own decision, create their own opinion on if the story works for them or not. As readers we are all very different and what works for one reader may or may not work for the next. This was a good story, with good pacing and character development. It is a very worthwhile read just to meet these adorable, lovable characters that the author has created.
I will definitely give this author another try, and will even search out some backlist titles to check out as well.
The Cowboys Series
About the Author
Z. A. Maxfield started writing in 2007 on a dare from her children and never looked back. Pathologically disorganized, and perennially optimistic, she writes as much as she can, reads as much as she dares, and enjoys her time with family and friends. Three things reverberate throughout all her stories: Unconditional love, redemption, and the belief that miracles happen when we least expect them.
If anyone asks her how a wife and mother of four can find time for a writing career, she’ll answer, “It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you give up housework.”