As the resident romance redneck here at Bookstr, it only makes sense that I’m the one to shed light on Cowboy Heritage this month. Apparently, there’s a rumor running around that the cowboy lifestyle is a dying idea. My TikTok FYP and personal life experience would beg to differ, but hey, I am just one person in this great state of Texas. Now, I simply typed “cowboy romance” into the Goodreads search bar (which always returns wonderful results) and have chosen just a few for us to take a deep dive into.
Please note that there will be no repeat authors because many authors find a niche genre that works for them, and cowboy romance is no different!
Cowboys Never Marry Their Best Friend
Emmy, I have a sneaking suspicion that this cowboy does marry his best friend. Y’all know I’m not one to recommend something that doesn’t feature a happily-ever-after, so odds are Seth and Jenna do end up together. Really though, it’s the journey that matters and not the ending… (I might be lying). Not only does Cowboys Never Marry Their Best Friend tick off that older brother’s best friend trope, but it also kicks off the Chestnut Ranch Cowboy Billionaires that Emmy has concocted! I did say that authors find their niche, right? Also, let’s just admire this cover… why is Seth floating? why is there one random horse? All the elements are there– it’s perfect.
The Cowboy’s Convenient Marriage
Are you a bit confused? A bit disoriented? You’re probably thinking, why the hell are there two covers here… featuring the same author… with basically the same book title… Don’t fret! Jessie originally published Cowboys Don’t Have a Marriage of Convenience independently, but once it was picked up she had to tweak the title to The Cowboy’s Convenient Marriage. Simple trade. I think probably my favorite thing about romance covers is how straightforward they are. You don’t have to guess what tropes they’re going to incorporate because they’re plastered it on their front cover in big scrolly typeface! However, the main male character in this is a bull rider, and I’m convinced those individuals have little to no survival skills because of their chosen sport/career.
A Texas Kind of Christmas
I’m getting strong Heartland vibes from this cover, y’all. That dog is photoshopped in, and you can’t convince me otherwise. I’m glad I picked this one because it’s actually three stories in one book, which always leads to a fun time. A Texas Kind of Christmas is a really good beach read, so long as you hate the heat of summer and long for those frosty winter nights. (We typically only get one or the other here in Texas, I mean, y’all do remember the February freezes, right??) This anthology series features three stories that are sure to tickle your fancy in one way or another.
The Cowboy’s Spring Romance
I don’t like this cover… there’s nothing particularly wrong with it; I just feel like it could use a redesign. However, seeing as how this was published in 2012, it fits the timeframe and theme or aesthetic of that time. I do appreciate the kind of discreet cover element (another piece of the romance world that has been on the rise). Fair warning, this is labeled as a “Christian Romance” by four users– so take that as you will. I’m imagining closed-door romance for this cowboy and school teacher, I can neither confirm nor deny how involved the Christianity element is. But The Cowboy’s Spring Romance gets props because it’s that two idiots in love trope, which is to die for.
Second Chance Cowboy
Of course, this is a second-chance romance which can go one of two ways. Option one: second chance romance can lead to both characters realizing they never really stopped loving each other and mutually decide to rekindle the relationship. Or option two: second chance romance can lead to one character falling madly in love with the other while the aforementioned other character has plans to move on with their life after stopping by for a quick visit. Second Chance Cowboy features a mixture of both of these options, something that usually leads to that inevitable third-act miscommunication trope that no one likes. But, y’all know by now that I don’t recommend things unless they have that iconic HEA and are wrapped up in a bow like a Hallmark Christmas movie.
Her Restless Cowboy
I giggled at the male main character’s last name in this one. It’s Buttars, and my brain defaults to Paula Dean for some reason. I will say, though, Her Restless Cowboy has something that I haven’t seen in a long time. The female main character is older than the leading man. I feel like this isn’t as explored as the older guy and younger woman pairing. I could probably trace that back to some kind of misogynistic origin, but I don’t have the character space for it at the moment. Liz features a powerful FMC who takes shit from no one and puts her job before finding love, another thing that isn’t appreciated enough. The fact of the matter is that women rule to world, and men just live in it (but we aren’t getting into that… today, at least).
Show Me a Single Dad Cowboy
We all know I judge books by their covers, and this one does not bode well. Maybe it’s my indifference towards children, but I don’t like it. Even though I love the single dad trope (I think it’s adorable in theory, I would not pursue this in actuality), I might decide to completely skip over this only because of the cover. I do like that it plainly tells me what this story is about, in fact, what all the stories in the Cowboy Crossing Romance series are about. Show Me a Single Dad Cowboy is one of those books that I would read– and, let’s be honest, probably thoroughly enjoy because I’m easy to please– but not be happy about it.
I sure hope you enjoyed this tiny sampling of just some of the stories you should be enjoying to celebrate Cowboy Heritage. Save a horse, ride a cowboy is what we say here in the south. Really, if you’re going to immerse yourself into the cowboy lifestyle, be prepared for incredibly sore muscles and lots of sunburns. But seriously, stay away from bull and bronc riders; they’re genuinely insane (IMO).
For more romance recommendations from the resident romance redneck, click here!