Reviewed by JenIt's only been a few weeks since someone killed Matthew Graham's parents and kidnapped his youngest brother. But now he is the head of the family, doing his best to run the family ranch and raise his brood of brothers and sisters. One of the tasks that has fallen to him is a trip to Houston to claim some extra acreage his father was planning to use to expand their property. But when he arrives, Matthew is stunned to find that he must be married to get the land for his family. In a moment of weakness, he lies --claiming to be married to a woman named Hannah. Only, the officials give him 30 days to produce that wife or the deal is done.
It's pure luck that allows Matthew to run into Hannah Foley at the market. He feels an attraction to her, but he honestly lays out his situation to her and asks her to wed. Fearing it's her only chance for a husband, Hannah accepts his offer and they are married within the week.
It's really kind of nice watching Hannah come into the fold of the Graham family. She helps fill some of the hole left by their parents' death and they give her the family she always dreamed of as an orphan. Of course, Matt and Hannah's marriage of convenience becomes more over time. The sexual connection happens right away, but real feelings begin to surface as they get to know one another better.
There were times I got frustrated with both characters. Hannah takes a lot of crap before she stands up for herself. And Matt... if I had to read his internal monologue about establishing dominance one more time, I may have found a way to jump into the book and kick his shins. But the sex was good and both characters managed to do alot of growing over the course of the book.
There was a good mystery surrounding who killed the Graham parents and some shady dealings with the land entitlement. I liked villain reveal and the circumstances in which our couple eventually prevailed. I was surprised that the author opted to leave a few threads open... not everything was wrapped up into a neat little package. But this leaves her some elements to incorporate should she follow up with a story on Matt's sister and the mysterious inspector. Almost 4 stars.
P.S. That cover is smokin' hot!
*ARC provided by author for review
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Matthewby Emma Lang (Beth Williamson)Release Date: February 1, 2012Publisher: Brava