It has been a while since I’ve gotten any reviews done, and while I said I was going to catch up I just have not been able to with the semester winding-down and holiday season coming in for work. But here I am, and what a better way to get back into the game than with Lorelei James’s Rough Riders?
Tied Up, Tied Down is book 4in the Rough Riders series. Kade McKay has just come back from spending a year out in the middle of nowhere for a cattle experiment. After everything that happened between him and Skylar in book 3, Cowgirl Up and Ride, he figured some time away wouldn’t be the worst thing. However, what he comes home to is unexpected. Days after arriving back home his mother comes home in a tizzy demanding to know how he could have hidden something so important for her. Kade, however, has no idea what she is talking about. A three month old baby girl with McKay eyes was born to Skylar, father… Kade McKay.
Skylar had attempted to inform Kade that she was pregnant when she found out, but he had already gone off into the country for the cattle experiment and his twin brother Kane was no help in getting word out. Skylar did the only thing she could think of. She went through the pregnancy and birth of a child with only the help of her sister India.
Kade is determined to do what is right by his baby girl and her mother, so after meeting his daughter Eliza, he moves in with Skylar so he can be there to help out. Everything from making dinner and doing the grocery shopping to getting up in the middle of the night to feed Eliza, Kade is there to help Skylar out, and she appreciates it. After some time though, Skylar wonders if Kade is no longer attracted to her. After all, they are sharing a bed and he has not made a single move on her.
Enter romance into the story. At the beginning Kade and Skylar are parenting partners, and that’s good, but they want each other and make no move to do anything about it. The sexual tension is great, and when they finally give into the passion again, it makes for some explosive love scenes.
I really liked Tied Up, Tied Down. This is probably my favorite of the series behind book 3. I don’t want to give away anything to those who have not read book 3 already, so I will just say that after reading Cowgirl Up and Ride I was wondering what would happen next with Kade and Skylar.
Skylar is one of my favorite female characters in the series. She’s had a rough past, but she has managed to make a life for herself. She is strong and independent. She is a leader, runs her own business, and looks out for those around her. While that is all fine and dandy, she is made more human by the fact that she does still have doubts. All those little things that women think of in real life like, does he not want me anymore because my figure is different, she goes through that. She is strong, but she still has feelings and she is easy to relate to, something I value in a character.
Kade had his own process that he goes through. Because he and Kane are identical twins and Kane happens to be a jerk, Kade is constantly judged by his brother or mistaken to be his brother and treated like shit for something he did not actually do. This along with the suprise baby girl, who is a huge deal because Keely is the only other McKay born girl for several generations, gives Kade great depth as a character. He is learning to be a father and dealing with the backfiring of his brother and cousins actions.
I have to mention the family party scene. It was awesome, and a bit out of control. There are a lot of McKay’s and a lot of West’s and when you put the two together, it gets even crazier. Kids everywhere, other McKay women talking about everything from babies to their husbands, it’s a bit hectic. But I love when the whole family gets together in the books because it makes for interesting story time, and in this one, it’s no different.
Seeing as how it is Lorelei James I’m talking about I have to say that this book has a lot of heat. When compared to her other books, the sex in Tied Up, Tied Down is quite tame, but it is no less steamy. Remember to keep that in mind when looking for a good, sexy read.
When it comes down to basics, I love how Kade and Skylar overcome their differences, clear up miscommunications, and work through trust issues to become the hardworking successful couple they are. The two get to know each other on a deeper level than before and build a relationship on a good sturdy base. They are devoted t each other and their daughter, and that happily ever after we all love is most certainly achieved.
The next installment in the Rough Riders series, book 5, is Rough, Raw, and Ready. Chassie West Glanzer has been married to her husband Trevor Glanzer, whom we met in book 1 Long Hard Ride, for about a year. Both Chassie’s father and brother have passed away so their part of the ranch is hers and Trevor’s to run. Regardless of the money problems and the stress of getting the work done, Trevor and Chassie have a good relationship. However, things are tossed upside down when the Glanzer’s receive a visit from Edgard Mancuso, Trevor’s past lover.
Chassie is unaware that Edgard was ever more than just a friend to Trevor, and a part of Trevor struggles with the feelings that Edgard still rouses in him. Chassie agrees to let Edgard stay with her and Trevor and she ends up spending a lot of time with him and getting to know him, especially since Trevor seems agitated about Edgard’s being there. However, one day Chassie makes something of an untimely appearance coming upon Trevor and Edgard as they were kissing him. Chassie was floored, she had no idea what to say or do, and ended up leaving to clear her head and think about what she witnessed.
Chassie ends up at Channing and Colby’s house, and after speaking with Channing, she has a better idea of the way things are between the two men. With her head cleared and her determination to get things figured out, Chassie heads back home to Trevor and Edgard.
Chassie, Trevor, and Edgard begin a spicy menage relationship. They work through their troubles and come to realizations that the three of them can be happy with each other.
What I Thought:
Rough, Raw, and Ready was a bit different from the other books in the Rough Riders series, and while I’ve never really gotten into the whole menage craze, I actually really enjoyed the book.
I got to get to know each of these characters better and it was interesting reading. Each of them has their own familial demons to overcome. Edgard deals with the death of his mother and the fact that after she passed he was essentially disowned by his survivng family because they could not accept his sexuality. Trevor faces his family and realizes that he does not need to care what they think. To hell with them, if they can’t accept the life he has chosen to live so be it. Trevor does not want to end up like his father and so he takes steps to ensure his own happiness. Chassie’s demons are in the form of accepting her fate on the ranch, she still struggles with the death of her father and brother, but she is living and doing her absolute best to keep the family business going. In addition, she overcomes her initial shock of Trevor and Edgard’s past while forging ahead to a future with both men.
As you can guess, there is quite a bit going on in this book. Separate and together, the three face their lives and come out of it for the better. There is some hot and heavy sex between the three and even though I have not explored much menage romance, Rough, Raw, and Ready was still a steamy, sexy read. All in all, another great installment in the Rough Riders series.