Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Length: Full (368 pages)
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Camellia
A marriage in name only. A secret past. Can love be found amid the tangle of distrust and betrayal? Alone and pregnant with twins, Amber Wilson has only a fuzzy memory of how she got that way. One thing she knows for sure—no man will ever get near enough to hurt her again. But when she meets Stone Brandon, the attraction is too great to ignore. Stone’s ex-fiancée’s betrayal has hardened his heart. Though he is drawn to Amber, he knows he can never fall in love again. Still, with her help, the dreams he has for the expansion of his family’s ranch can become a reality. A platonic marriage seems like the logical answer for both of them—until he realizes that a marriage in name only with Amber is a hell of his own making.
Stubborn pride, sanctimonious pride, and unbridled lust, though not of her making, cause Amber Wilson misery. They threaten to defeat her at times. Fleeting memories of a terrifying experience makes her fearful and defensive but her inner strength, humor, and innate goodness ignite a spark of resolute determination that brings her survival instincts to the fore and make her a joy to read about.
Ruggedly handsome cowboy Stonewall (Stone) Jackson Brandon, emotionally wounded and humiliated by his ex-fiancé, barricades his heart against love and almost loses the greatest of his treasures. He is so dead set on getting his trust fund, running the ranch to suit himself, and soothing his hurt pride, he runs roughshod over lots of people—people he really cares about but will not admit that he does. His flaws cause grief but his true self rises to the occasion when the chips are down. Wow, what a hero he is!
Sandra Kay creates a setting and secondary characters (some that are real stinkers) that enhance the actions, emotions, and foibles of both the hero and heroine. The symbolism adds interesting texture to the story, example: perfume “Poison”. Also, wonderful phrases like “edge of her soul ragged” makes for satisfying reading.
Heart of Stone, well-crafted and smooth flowing, pulls the reader into the Texas hill country in the heat of summer to be a participate in the ‘gorgeous”, blue-eyed Stone’s and the feisty, very-pregnant Amber’s special story—a love story that reminds one why reading romance is good for emotional well-being.
Writers and Readers of Distinctive Fiction Review:
For me, Heart of Stone was the perfect read. The author, Sandra Kay, does not waste any time drawing you into the story. From the git-go you know who the main characters are and what is really on their minds despite the fact they are both determined never to trust or love again. I was totally captivated by the entire Brandon family and their sense of "family" and what it really means. Before it was all over I was ready to be adopted by them.
When I finished reading Heart of Stone, I was a little disappointed, I wanted more. I was happy to discover that the Brandon Family will live on in a series of books by Sandra Kay. I will be keeping my eyes open.
eviewed by FJD
Heart of Stone
Available from The Wild Rose Press
Amber Wilson is alone and pregnant with twins. Her memory of how she became pregnant is somewhat hazy, but what she can remember horrifies her to the extent that she will never let another man that close again. However, when she meets Stone Brandon, the attraction to him is almost too much to withstand.
Stone was betrayed by his ex-fiancé and has sworn to never trust another female with his heart. When he meets Amber he finds himself drawn to her. He wants to help her, but will not risk another betrayal. So he comes up with a solution that will help them both, a marriage of convenience. It will give Amber and her babies a safe home and he can get the funds needed to improve the ranch, without the complications of love. What he doesn’t realize is keeping his hands off her will be harder than he could have ever imagined and not losing his heart, impossible.
Sandra Kay has written a great story that draws the reader in from the beginning and keeps them there with her ability to bring her characters to life. She makes this a keeper. The banter and arguments between Amber and Stone are at times so funny. The story is definitely never boring. Stone is such a sweet caring man, but at times I found myself wanting to shake him, to make him see what is right in front of his face. And Amber is such a strong little person who is determined to succeed no matter what. But the secondary characters play such an intricate part of this story, it just wouldn't be the same without each of them to add the layers that brings this family to life. I would recommend this one to anyone who loves a great romance and I hope there will be more to come from this family as they all deserve their happily ever after.
Overall rating: 5 Hearts
Sensuality rating: Mildly sensual
THE ROMANCE STUDIO
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Comments by readers of Heart of Stone
Wow that is a great book. I did not want to stop reading.
Finished reading it last week and loved it. Great story.
A Law of Her Own now available.