I've never been a fan of western romances novels. Movies yes, but not books. In fact until now I have never discovered one that I actually liked…let alone enjoyed. It may seem harsh, but I find the genre overly done with constant repeated plots. So when I was looking for something new and different to read I thought I would give With Open Arms a try just to see if anything had changed.
Maybe it is the historical aspect of this novel that made me enjoy it as much as I have or maybe it's the fact that Nord knows how to pen a proper and adventurous western, either way this book is certainly one to read! I was so pleased by how the writing style appealed to me as a reader and there was nothing to despise about characters Jasper, the hero and Callie, the heroine. The wild horses as backdrop characters only made me fall in love with this novel that much more.
While there are many things I love about this novel I think what stands out to me the most is how new this book is when comparing it to other western romances and it's impossible not to do that because of how many are published daily. The plot was entirely different with Jasper purchasing his half of the family's ranch from Callie's brother and having it come as a surprise to Callie who had no idea that her brother would actually sell his part of their family homestead without even consenting with her.
As for the romance, it began more like deep sensual chemistry being exchanged between Jasper and Callie without the need for touching. That teased me along and lead up to the points of the sexual scenes which were tastefully written in their own right. Also I love when an author thinks to include an epilogue as Nord chose to do with her novel. It worked out perfectly because I was able to see what Jasper and Callie were doing in the years that followed their first encounter.
Overall I think Nord has taught me one thing, don't judge a book by what you have a previously read.
A war-weary ex-soldier. An untamable woman. Love doesn’t stand a chance in hell…
Hardened in childhood by the death of her parents, then left to run the family’s southwestern territory ranch when her brother rode off to fight for the Union years before, Callie Cutteridge hides her heartbreak behind a mask of self-sufficiency. Breaking horses for the army proves she’s neither delicate nor helpless. When a former cavalry officer shows up claiming to own her brother’s half of the Arizona ranch, she steels herself to resist the handsome stranger’s intention to govern even one single aspect of her life. After all, loving means losing…to her it always has.
For months, Jackson Neale has looked forward to putting the bloodstained battlefields back east behind him. Callie isn’t the agreeable angel her brother led him to believe, but he’s damned well not the useless rake this foul-mouthed hellion thinks he is, either. His quest for calm stability contradicts sharply with her need for control, yet still their heartstrings tangle. But how can these mistrusting partners transform their fiery passion into happily-ever-after?
Warning: Contains a high-strung, tart-tongued heroine who drives the hero past the point of rational thought. If she were a man, he’d be happy to connect a well-aimed fist at her jaw. As it is, he’d be happy to give her foul mouth a good scrubbing with a bar of soap.