Sacrificial Love Found in A Cowboy’s Touch
- Monday, April 04, 2011
Author: Denise Hunter
Title: A Cowboy’s Touch
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Abigail Jones calls herself “the Truthseeker,” a nickname earned by her work as an investigative reporter. Her passion for uncovering secrets goes back to her childhood, when certain events became unwitting motivations for her pursuit of truth. But Abigail’s devotion to the job doesn’t always agree with her high blood pressure, so her editor—who is also her mother—sends her out west for a three-month sabbatical. There, in Moose Creek, Montana, Abigail is supposed to check on the relative sanity and health of her great-aunt Lucy.
Within days of arriving in Moose Creek, Abigail meets a young girl whose bike has been stolen. Her inner investigator can’t resist, so she teams up with the girl, Maddy, to help her find the bike. Their unlikely friendship leads Maddy’s father, ex-rodeo celebrity Wade Ryan, to hire Abigail as Maddy’s nanny for the summer.
Wade has secrets of his own he’d rather keep to himself, thank you kindly. A single dad, formerly famous and now virtually hiding out on his ranch—can he raise his daughter without a woman’s touch? Unwillingly attracted to Abigail, he begins to wonder if maybe he doesn’t have to.
A curious Abigail begins to probe his background, thinking perhaps an expose will save her mother’s failing magazine. But Wade sure does deserve that “Sexiest Man Alive” title he won a few years back, and he’s got a heart of gold to go with it. It doesn’t take long before Abigail realizes she’s in trouble. Can she really betray the man she’s falling for?
Abigail and Wade resemble two people racing toward each other in a game of “chicken” daring the other to flinch first. He wants to keep his secrets, and she feels compelled to uncover them. How does truth relate to doing right? Can seeking truth ultimately do harm instead of the good you intend? Through these characters, the author explores whether the truth can really set us free.
In keeping with her previous works, Denise Hunter creates extremely likeable characters. Wade and Abigail are flat-out adorable, kooky Aunt Lucy will keep you laughing, and Maddy will steal your heart. They aren’t perfect (thankfully—wouldn’t that be boring?), only Wade is drop-dead gorgeous, and their flaws come to light early on. All of which causes the reader to root all the more for them. My one disappointment is the secret that Abigail has been harboring. It isn’t as profound as I expected it to be. Surely something that molded Abigail’s career and personality would be something more powerful.
Hunter has a knack for descriptions that make a setting shine. Montana might end up on your must-see list (though she smartly set the story there during the summer months). You might even hum a little Dixie Chicks “Wide Open Spaces” during a few scenes.
A Cowboy’s Touch is the first of Hunter’s Big Sky Romance series and also a Women of Faith book. The characters’ faith does play a small part in their development, but more importantly, Wade’s actions, in a remarkable finale, embody the sacrificial love that God has for his children.
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