Whiskey River series
by Justine Davis
Still reeling from the unexpected sale of the land she and her horses live on, horse rescuer Kelsey Blaine is frantic when she comes home to find her possessions already boxed up and her house being bulldozed without any notice. Normally calm and kind, Kelsey becomes furious and impulsively cuts a privacy fence to confront the culprit–her mysterious neighbor, Joe.
Joe Kilcoyne is in a desperate place. He guards his secrets and hides from the world for a reason. He’s the hottest topic of speculation around Whiskey River, but no one has ever dared to get close to him. That is, until fiery Kelsey comes barging straight into his life.
The last thing Joe needs is for Kelsey to breach his defenses and make him confront his past. But when her sunny, open, and determined personality collide with a haunted man with no idea how to reconnect with the world, the sparks that ignite shock them both.
I enjoyed the story that I was given – Kelsey has the patience of a saint (which she needs working with rescue horses) and that comes in handy when dealing with Declan. I was a little disappointed with the ultimatum she gave him at the end because I felt that it came a little too soon. I’m not sure why she chose that exact moment to feel like she had to make him get out and meet people. It wasn’t something that had been brewing and you would have thought that she would ease him into it better after how well she’d handled him up to that point.
My biggest problem though was that we didn’t get more of Declan’s story. I had a lot of questions about his mother and his childhood and I think that more time could have spent sharing details … like why did he have a horse at all? Why would a person who treated him the way she did let him have anything that gave him happiness? Why did she let him go to school? Why wouldn’t his teachers know that he was being mistreated? How did he manage to take care of himself as a runaway at 13?
Davis does a great job of making sure that you understand Declan even without all those questions answered but it does take away from it a little. He’s a complicated man and one who needs a more involved story to fully be appreciated, I think. Maybe even 2 or 3 🙂 I loved seeing him open up to Kelsey and making a connection with someone who could help him step out of his comfort zone. I just wanted even more