I officially dub 2019 the Year of the Cowboys, because dang it, it's undeniable! The Cowboy Next Door clearly shows why cowboys reign supreme in the world of book boyfriends, and now I am off to find my own...no, seriously, I am heading to a dude ranch in April, and I fully intend to come home with a cowboy of my own. Having never read this author before, I wasn't sure what to expect, but R.C. Ryan has me hooked on her books! This is the second book in a series, though the series can absolutely be read out of order, and I need to get the first book as soon as possible.
When Sam Monroe meets Penny Cash, she did not meet his expectations at all. Instead of a sweet old woman taking advantage of his father's good will, she is an amber-eyed young woman with a sharp tongue and a talent for cooking to rival their old ranch hand, Zachariah. Penny fully intended on becoming a teacher in the small town of Haller Creek, but when the job falls through and she needs work until other arrangements can be made, she finds herself the cook at Monroe Ranch, with a beautiful bedroom all to herself and appreciative mouths to feed. She wasn't expecting Sam, and as they grow closer, her dreams of becoming a teacher begin to be overshadowed by a dream she never considered - a dream of being loved by a sweet-talking cowboy.
Penny and Sam were so perfect together, I can't even begin to describe it. They were one of those couples you instantly take a liking to the minute they meet, and their relationship only makes them more appealing as individuals. Both had hard lives growing up, each with unique struggles, and they grew up to be caring, hard-working adults. Sam didn't think he would settle down anytime soon, but Penny blows any plans he has about staying a bachelor out of the water. Her humble attitude, amazing cooking, and general good-naturedness appealed to him instantly. Penny was wary of Sam at first, but his generosity and willingness to be patient with her won her over as the story progressed. I loved their personalities from the start, and I fell in love as they fell in love.
The youngest Monroe brother gets his book next, and it's sure to be amazing! A lawyer who grew up on a ranch...should be a wild ride.
**I received a free copy from the publisher and this is my honest review.**