Between Hope and the Highway by Charissa Stastny
Sometimes things get so messed up you have to pick up and get the heck out of Dodge. That’s what Liz Ruthersford does. Memories can be weapons, and hers have become incoming missiles. Fleeing home and her parents’ pity, she seeks refuge on a remote ranch in Montana where no one knows her tragic past. When she meets Bentley and Rawson Law, brothers with wounds of their own, life veers off course from her plans. Embers of hope and love flicker to life, but will Liz let them burn bright enough to warm her heart? Or will she hit the highway and run once again? A clean, heart-pounding romance and redemption story.
Praise for Between Hope and the Highway
“Stastny has weaved an endearing tale with Between Hope and the Highway. It is a beautiful story about love, loss, redemption, and forgiveness of not only others, but most importantly, ourselves. This is more than a love story, it is a story of family and coming together.” –Jennifer Peel, author
“…an epic tale of romance, unconditional love, redemption, and the power of the human spirit to survive and transform amidst adversity. The metamorphosis of the hero makes this a highly gratifying read. He grows with each flip of the page, leaving behind a trail of optimism. This book will make you smile as you witness a true change of heart.” – Taylor Dean, author
As I finished loading the last horse, Rawson materialized and wrapped his arms around me again. I jumped as he nestled his stubbled chin into my neck. The tingling sensation he evoked sent delightful shivers clear down to my toes.
“You ready to go, babycakes?”
Goosebumps erupted as he rubbed his chin against my neck. I tried to escape, but Blondie stood nearby and Rawson acted for all he was worth. Twisting me, he pulled me close and leaned in to kiss me. I threw my hand over my mouth just before his lips made contact. At this angle, the bimbo couldn’t tell he kissed the back of my hand quite passionately. Thank goodness for small mercies. I might have passed out if he’d gone at my lips with such gusto.
When he paused to wink at me, I whispered, “I hate your guts.”
His blue-green eyes crinkled. “I know.” He grabbed my slobbery hand and said over his shoulder, “It was a pleasure meeting you, Kelsey.” He doffed his hat and closed the trailer. Opening my door, he helped me inside his flashy truck. “There you go, sweetheart.”
When he climbed in the driver’s side, I hauled off and punched his leg. “I can’t believe you kissed my hand like that.”
“I was going for your lips.”
He laughed. Glancing out the window and catching Kelsey watching us like lab rats, he leaned over to peck my cheek.
“Kiss me again and I’ll deck you,” I said between clenched teeth.
“It might be worth it, especially if you move your hand.”
He waved as we pulled away from the arena. “I owe you big time for saving me from that blond nightmare. Thanks for playing along.”
“You kind of forced me to,” I grumped.
His grin caused havoc in my heart. “Did you see her face when you said all that garbage about what thing implied? It was difficult to keep a straight face.”
I stuck my tongue out, making him chortle.
“Ah, Lizzie, you’re all right.”
“And you’re an idiot.”
Charissa contacted me recently to read and review her latest book Between Hope and the Highway. She has been following the blog after reading a blogpost I wrote as a guest on a blog she hosts together with 3 other authors. I’m sorry to say I only knew she was a friend of a friend, so to say, but wasn’t familiar with her work. I’m SO glad she gave me the opportunity to read this book, and head into Montana and the wonderful world of sexy cowboys and hope and love. This was a true treat!
This story is written from three different POV’s, Liz, Rawson and Bentley.
Liz, or Elisabeth, lost her fiancé in a terrible accident, and to deal with the loss, she runs away to Montana to work on a ranch as one of the ranch hands. She is one of those natural beauties that is completely unaware of her effect on the opposite sex.
Rawson is the oldest of the Law boys, he is drop dead gorgeous and working as a male model when the book kicks off. He lost his brother in a terrible accident, and his youngest brother Bentley, who is 13 at the beginning of the book, was left with a terrible injury on his spine.
Liz takes to the ranch immediately, and soon becomes a favorite among not only the other ranch hands, but also the Law family. Until Rawson returns home. By then Bentley has convinced his dad to move Liz into Rawson’s old room, and she is working his job, riding his horse, and Rawson is none too happy about all of that.
Liz and Rawson butt heads in a bad way, Rawson is a real jerk to her. He pushes her as hard as he can, but eventually his eyes are opened to see the true person she is. By then he also realizes she is the perfect fit for him, and he is bent on letting her know just that.
Liz is full of insecurities, mostly due to her mother’s constant condescending remarks and snippy comments. So she doesn’t quite know what to make of Rawson’s attentions, especially when they keep on hitting constant bumps along the road.
I started this book on a Friday night, and was glad it was a relatively slow weekend so I could fit in a lot of reading. It also helped that my husband was glued to the TV watching the Ryder Cup, which gave me a lot of time during the evenings to race through the pages to try and see where this tale would take me. I loved Bentley! I would love to see him get his own book. He captured my heart and was a true hero in such a special way. He learnt to deal with the rough hand life dealt him yet kept a great outlook on life. And he was such a fan of Liz, and did all he could for her and Rawson to win out in the end. Such devotion and character, what a star!
This book is also all about healing. Although this had a lot of inspirational elements to it, which I usually don’t care for too much, I found the mention of church, the change it brought into Rawson’s life, and the way it helped heal the boys a good addition without it being the focus of the book. It to me did not turn into a preachy, annoying book that can sometimes happen in this genre. On the contrary, this book had quite a punch to it, and the chemistry between Liz and Rawson was sizzling. The first kiss probably only happened somewhere past the first half of the book, I think 65% into it, but the build up to it, and the passion those two have, what a ride!
I would say this was one of those books that judging in by the cover seemed to me like it would just be another one of those reads, but I was surprised to find so much more under the surface of this book. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys true romance with toe curling kissing and snap, crack and pop chemistry (trust me after you read it you will understand 🙂 )! I loved it, and I think I have found a new author to follow closely!
Author Charissa Stastny
Charissa Stastny is married to her high school sweetheart and has four children who are the light of her life. She’s an avid reader, happy writer, BYU graduate, and lover of irises, clouds, chocolate, sushi, and nature. Though born and raised in Las Vegas, she has never pulled a handle of a slot machine and can’t shuffle cards to save her life. She shuffles kids, laundry, and church responsibilities rather well though. She currently lives in Utah with her family, where shuffling cards isn’t required.
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
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