Thursday, March 6, 2014

Review: Riding Tall by Kate Sherwood

Reviewed by Whuppsy
Riding Tall (The Fall #2) by Kate Sherwood
Dreamspinner Press
Novel: 200pgs
5 Pants Off

Joe Sutton and Scott Mackenzie have ridden off into the sunset, but they wake to the cruel light of reality. Joe loves his family, even with the addition of three neighbors orphaned by a house fire. He loves the land that has supported them for generations. While there’s plenty of room left in his heart for Mackenzie, Joe must make room for him in his life. 

Tired of taking and determined not to depend on another sugar daddy, Mackenzie returns to modeling in the city, but the wild clubs he once loved aren’t home anymore. Yet things aren’t right back at the ranch either. Joe is no longer the man he knew. Before the love of his life reaches his breaking point, Mackenzie must convince Joe he’s not lazy if he takes a break and not weak if he needs a little help. Finding the balance between give and take might leave them time for happily ever after.

So this is the sequel to The Fall and what a book it was. I was so darn excited to read this book. I really wanted to see how Joe and Mackenzie’s relationship moved along and boy did I get a great story.

So, let’s begin!!!

Joe and Mackenzie have been together for about 6 months or so when we catch up with them. They are the guardians of Savanna and Lacey whom we met in The Fall. They have a house full of children and are trying to make things work out. It’s hard work, but they are making headway into things falling into place.

Mackenzie is working more at his previous career as a model. It’s taking him away from Joe and the kiddos. He wants to be able to spend some alone time with Joe and just be a couple in a relationship. He has these fantasies that they can take a night out and do stuff, just the two of them. Not a bad thing, but every time that he has one of these ongoing fantasies, something new pops up that takes him farther from his dream.

Joe on the other hand is trying to keep his head and the heads of everyone in his family above water. He’s doing the best he can to try and do the right thing, which as we know from the previous book, is Joe’s thing to do. He’s a fixer. He just wants everyone to be happy and healthy. He’s struggling to meet everyone’s needs. He carries so much responsibility and guilt that he’s beginning to drown and sees no way out.

These two are having a rough go at trying to fit their relationship into the whirlwind that has become their lives. They are both trying to move in the same direction and yet, they seem to be moving further apart. They both want to the same things and yet, they can’t seem to get on the same page. It was hard to see them struggling to even make time for themselves while giving so much to everyone else.

The secondary characters really brought their A-games into play. They were such amazing parts of the whole story. The fact that the kids played an even bigger part then the last story and truly this was also their story as well. We got to see how life has changed for the Walton girls. How they are adapting to living with the Suttons. I really liked how we got to know them better. You feel for those girls. Even Joe’s younger siblings and nephew brought about strong feelings. They gave love, laughter and hardship, but these characters all stood by Joe and Mackenzie. They made sure that their lives weren’t boring, but filled with both good and bad.

I will say that the addition of Kami into the mix was a hard one for me. I liked that the girls were brought back together. That was really sweet and tells you that even with all that they had been through, that they wanted their sister back with them. The hard part was the additional stress that it brought to Joe and Mackenzie’s relationship. It was both good and bad and yet, it was in a sense needed. It was the push that moved them whether it was going to be to each other or apart, it was moving them out of this holding pattern that they had gotten stuck in.

This book really gave me a good hard run for my money. Once I started reading, I really didn’t want to stop. Darn work. I wanted them to find a way to make it better. To stay together and I rooted for them. No matter what was going on, I kept saying to myself, “Self, Keep the faith. Kate will move us to where we want to go.” Kate pulled it out of the fire for me.

Read this book. You won’t be sorry that you did. I would suggest reading The Fall first, as it gives you the beginning of Joe and Mackenzie. I will say that this book was a Worthy Sequel.

5 Pants Off
Review: Book #1 The Fall

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