Title Kentucky Cowboy
Author Jan Scarbrough
Genre Contemporary Romance
Publisher Saddle Horse Press
Professional bull rider Judd Romeo defies death for a living, but there’s no escaping his grief when he returns home to settle his mother’s estate after her death. She’s the only one who encouraged him in his pursuit of his exhilarating but dangerous career. Going home means confronting his past, including the one woman he’s never forgotten. Maybe it’s time to extinguish the torch he’s carried too long.
Veterinarian Mandy Sullivan doesn’t have room in her life for dangerous risk-takers. She’s too busy being both mother and father to the daughter her sister abandoned. But it’s impossible to ignore it when trouble shows up right next door in the all-too sexy shape of her former beau. She’d walked away from his piercing blue eyes and bad boy smile once. Can she do it again?
Judd’s high school sweetheart may still be as pretty as a perfect eight-second ride, but she hadn’t been willing to stick it out in the past when the ride got rough. Mandy knows how to handle wounded animals but falling for a man with a wounded heart may be too great a risk to take. Is she willing to grab a second chance and let a Kentucky cowboy ride away with her love?
“Short Go” at a Rodeo Event in Dallas, Texas
“That’s one rank sonofabitch. Good draw you got, Romeo.”
Perched on top of a six-foot-deep metal chute, a leather bull rope clutched in his right hand, Judd Romeo nodded, acknowledging the flank man. “Yep, he’s a mean ’un.”
“Ain’t named Bad to the Bone for nuthin’,” the other man said.
Judd turned his attention to the 1900-pound Charolais-cross bull beneath him in the chute. It was good luck to draw last year’s bucking bull of the year. All he had to do was stick on this sucker for eight seconds and he’d have a win. No doubt about it.
Judd expelled a deep breath and rubbed his wet palms across his Wranglers. Pre-ride jitters. Nothing unusual. He’d gotten them before. He’d have them again. If he didn’t get ’em, he didn’t get that edge he needed to stay on one of these big bad bulls.
Still, Judd’s gut twisted as he eyed stock contractor Tim Wilson’s bull. Other riders said this bull lived up to his name, and they talked about how once Bad to the Bone threw up his head and smashed a guy’s face. Yet the bull was allowed back into the chutes, and cowboys kept trying to ride him.
Now it was Judd’s turn. Adrenaline pumped through his veins. A thin line of sweat peppered his lip. He backhanded it off. Winning was the reason he busted his butt on the circuit. He was a professional bull rider and a damn good one. This year he had a legitimate shot at the world title and the million-dollar bonus.
Too bad his father didn’t care.
Why think about Jared Romeo now? His dad had never approved of him, let alone his desire to ride bulls for a living.
He had proven his old man wrong, hadn’t he?
Judd drew a breath. Damn, why was he was chewing on the past when he needed to focus?
He slowly put on his leather riding glove, directing his gaze toward the packed arena. How he loved this life. The noisy crowd. The blaring rock music and high-tech pyrotechnics. The earthy smells of dirt, sweat, and manure. The camaraderie and danger. Eight seconds of heart-stopping thrills. Stunned silence when a competitor didn’t get up. Applause and cheers when the cowboy stood and staggered like a drunk out of the arena.
His father had never understood this excitement. The beauty of man tackling beast.
Mandy didn’t get it either. He had loved that girl in high school, but she had just seen the danger and walked away from him.
Judd looked away from the crowd. Riding bulls was all he wanted to do. All he knew how to do. It was in his blood.
He tried to swallow over the lump in his throat. His mother had appreciated his passion. She had understood.
The chute boss turned to him. “You’re up, Romeo.”
Judd’s head snapped up. “Right.”
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Whether it is the Bluegrass of Kentucky, the mountains of Montana, or Medieval England, Jan Scarbrough brings you home with romances from the heart.
The author of two popular Bluegrass series, Jan writes heartwarming contemporary romances about home and family, single moms and children, and if the plot allows, about another passion—horses. Living in the horse country of Kentucky makes it easy for Jan to add small town, Southern charm to her books and the excitement of a Bluegrass horse race or a competitive horse show.
A member of Novelist, Inc., Jan has published with Kensington, Five Star, ImaJinn Books, Resplendence Publishing and Turquoise Morning Press. Today she self-publishes her books with her husband’s help.
Jan lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with two rescued dogs, one rescued cat, and a husband she rescued seventeen years ago. She needs a weekly horse fix and takes horseback riding lessons at Premier Stables.
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