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New Release | Second Chances in Montana by Lucinda Race #cowboyromance #romance #bookboost #newrelease

Title Second Chances in Montana


Author Lucinda Race


Genre Contemporary Cowboy Romance


Book Blurb


In a small Montana town, love blossomed between Renee Mitchell and Hank Shepard. As teenagers, they were inseparable until a misunderstanding during freshman year of college drove them apart. Two decades have passed since they’ve talked, but a family emergency brings them full circle—back to where love blossomed.

Renee’s lifelong dream was to take over her family’s apple orchard. But a herd of cattle wreaks havoc on her newly planted trees.

Thundering across the pastureland, astride a black stallion, Hank Shepard is ready to save the day and drive the cattle back to his family ranch. Now that he’s back, he’s intent on mending more than fences. As he works by Renee’s side, helping her replant the tree stock his family’s cattle destroyed, dormant feelings between Renee and Hank spring to life like the orchard after a long, cold Montana winter.

Yet, it’s inevitable that Hank will return to his law practice in Texas. Will a long-distance relationship between Hank and Renee fan the flames of love, or will it vanish like apple blossoms in spring?

Second Chances in Montana is a rewrite of Apple Blossoms in Montana. The story has been revised and expanded to a full-length novel and is now the first novel in the Cowboys of River Junction Series, although each book can be read as standalone. A sweet and clean romantic story with a guaranteed happily ever after. Happy reading!




“Are you sure you’re ready to take over River Bend Orchard? It’s a big job for just one person.” Her mom placed a hand over Renee’s before she could scrawl her signature. With a balled-up tissue in her other hand, her mother’s brow furrowed when she looked at Renee’s dad. “Dave, I’m not sure about this anymore. We know how hard it is to run this business—the weather’s fickle and financial margins can get razor thin. I think we should just sell out to that man, Lucas Gasperini, and give our girl her share now before we leave for Arizona.”


Taking her mother’s hand, her dad gave Renee a questioning look. As if silently asking whether she wanted to change her mind.


Renee shook her head.


“Sara, this is something Renee has been waiting for and we haven’t foisted the orchard upon her. Besides, we’re not moving to Siberia; we’ll be available for advice.” Her dad nodded, smiling. The corners of his eyes crinkled and deep dimples formed in his cheeks—just like they’d done every time he was proud of her. “And if you ever decide you do want to sell, we’ll support that too.”


Renee pressed a hand to her rumbly midsection, wishing she had filled it with breakfast before they left the house. She dipped her head, despite the enormity of carrying on the family legacy, her insides danced with excitement.


Willing herself to relax, she inhaled and exhaled several times. Her chest rose and fell as she reclaimed her inner balance like she had done so many times in yoga.


It had taken years to convince them it was time to pass the tractor keys on and let her control her destiny. The last thing she needed was for her parents to view this as a frivolous idea.


Her voice was clear and steady. “Dad, I appreciate your concern—and Mom, you too—I’m excited to put the city in the past and return to my roots. River Junction is where I belong. It’s where I want to live. Please trust that I’m capable of handling the orchard. You’ve laid a strong foundation—not just with the business, but with me too.”


Her mom patted her hand. She tipped her head to the side and looked deep into Renee’s eyes. “Not a single second thought?”


“Not from me, but it sounds like you and Dad might not be ready to move to the desert.” She hoped her tone came off light and breezy.


Her dad’s health wasn’t the best and the doc had said he needed to slow down. With his sky-high blood pressure and cholesterol and the stress of running the business, he was a heart attack waiting to happen. His best chance at a long life was to make a significant change.


“I understand this is difficult being that Dad has worked the land since he was eighteen. Then you guys got married and became the second generation to run the orchard and you worked to expand it even more. Granddad always said you and Dad had the magic touch when it came to apples. Now it’s my turn to see if I can carry on and make you proud of me.”


Her mom placed a hand over her heart. Her voice cracked as she said, “Renee, we’ve always been proud and you don’t need to take over the farm to prove that to us, if that’s what you’re doing.”


Renee knew she had to convince them, even if Robert Adler, who had been the family lawyer for as long as she could remember, was charging them by the minute. “I never said anything because I didn’t want to worry you, but I hated living in Chicago. All the noise, pollution, and rude people. Don’t get me started on trying to find a crisp, juicy apple freshly picked—the kind where the juice runs down your chin when you take that first bite. It’s like looking for ninety-degree temps in River Junction in December.”


Her dad chuckled and her mom exhaled. A smile hovered in her eyes. Even if they thought it was a stretch about buying a fresh apple, they’d appreciate her attempt at humor. Her brow quirked in her parents’ direction. She tapped the polished walnut table with the tip of the fancy black and gold trimmed pen and pulled the contract to her. “I’m ready to sign if you are.”


Her mom leaned forward and tucked a lock of Renee’s long hair behind her ear. She looked into her daughter’s eyes as Renee glanced away as if her mother might see the secret which lingered there.


But the secret Renee held back was that she had lost her job due to downsizing and this was her best chance at enjoying a happy and normal life. Besides, the stress was causing her blood pressure to skyrocket and getting out of the corporate rat race was just what her doctor had ordered.


Renee’s mom cupped her chin. “If you ever change your mind, you can sell the orchard and your dad and I wouldn’t be upset. All we’ve ever wanted for you was to live your best life.”


She loved her parents, but she swore that sometimes they forgot she wasn’t a kid in school. High school graduation was twenty years ago and since, she received a college degree and then worked in the city. In her off hours she had wondered if she would be happier in the small Montana town. “Since we agree that we all need to live our best lives, let’s sign this paperwork and run over to the Filler Up Diner for a celebratory lunch. After that, we’ll head home and get your Blazer packed so you’ll be ready to hit the road after the sun comes up.” With the pen poised over the signature line, she gave her parents a side-glance. “After all, you have a house closing to get to in three days.”


She boldly scrawled her name across the legal document. When the last loop on the L was written, she handed the fancy pen to her father. “Your turn.”


He didn’t hesitate and her mom did the same before sliding the papers across the polished table in Mr. Adler’s direction.


He glanced over the contract, nodding at each page that had been signed and initialed. “Dave, helping you and Sara complete this deal makes me think that I should retire sometime in the near future too. But before that happens, I’ll need a good lawyer to walk through the door and want to take over my practice. I’d never leave the folks of River Junction without legal support.”


Dave reached across the table and clasped his hand, vigorously pumping his arm. “Rob, once we get settled, why don’t you come down for a visit and check out the area? See if it’s someplace you’d want to live or if you’d rather enjoy your retirement in River Junction.”


“Thanks, Dave. I’ll take you up on your offer.” He pushed his chair back, the wooden legs screeching across the oak flooring, and shook her mom’s hand too. “Sara, always a pleasure.”

Mr. Adler turned toward Renee then clasped her hand in his. He studied her from under thick salt-and-pepper eyebrows. In a deep fatherly voice, he said, “Congratulations, Renee. And remember, if you need anything, just let me know. Business or personal, I’m just a phone call away.”


“Thank you, Mr. Adler. I appreciate that.” She gave him a warm smile, knowing the offer was genuine. There were very few people in town or on the surrounding ranches who wouldn’t lend a hand if needed.


That was something else she had missed living in Chicago. Heck, she couldn’t even name the people who lived on the same floor at her condo much less ask them for help should she have needed any.


“Would you like to join us? I’ll bet Maggie has a great lunch special,” Renee asked.


Mr. Adler’s eyes twinkled. “Thank you, but enjoy the time with your folks.”


Her dad tapped the top of the conference table on his way out and called over his shoulder, “Rob, we expect to see you in Arizona soon.”


He lifted a hand. “Just let me know when you’re up for company and I’ll pack my bags.”


Stepping from the porch to the sidewalk, the cool air felt good on Renee’s cheeks after sitting in the overly warm conference room. She zipped her down jacket to her chin and shivered, patting her pockets, disappointed to discover they were empty. Then she jammed her hands in the zippered openings. The frosty nip in the air signaled fall had settled in and winter wouldn’t be far behind. They hurried across the street and strolled down the cement sidewalk in the direction of the diner. Her parents held hands like they were teenagers.


A stab shot through Renee’s heart and almost took her breath away. At one time she had someone special in her life and they had promised they’d always be together. But what did high school kids know of love and the demands of the real world? Hank Shepard was a distant memory, and thankfully, he lived fifteen hundred miles away. Not that she had kept up with his life, but her mom had casually mentioned his whereabouts when she arrived two weeks ago.


“Here we are.” Her dad pulled open the heavy glass door.


Her mom kissed his cheek before she walked in. “Thank you, dear.”


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Author Biography


Award-winning and best-selling author Lucinda Race is a lifelong fan of fiction. As a young girl, she spent hours reading cozy mystery and romance novels and getting lost in the fictional worlds. While her friends dreamed of becoming doctors and engineers, her dream was to become a writer—a novelist.


As life twisted and turned, she found herself writing nonfiction but longed to turn to her true passion. After developing the storyline for the McKenna Family Romance series, it was time to start living her dream. Her fingers practically fly over computer keys she weaves stories with strong, quirky characters, snarky humor, and toss in a bit of romance. To date, she has published over 30 novels paranormal cozy mysteries, and romance.

Lucinda lives with her two little dogs, a miniature long hair dachshund and a shitzu mix rescue, in the rolling hills of western Massachusetts. When she's not at her day job, she’s immersed in her fictional worlds. And if she’s not writing novels, she’s reading everything she can get her hands on.


Social Media Links




Lucinda’s Heart Racers Reader Group

1 commentaire

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Thank you, Lucinda, for sharing your new release with us!

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