Big Sky Summer by Linda Lael Miller: Review

August 23, 2013 Reviews 0

cover23874-mediumWith his father’s rodeo legacy to continue and a prosperous spread to run, Walker Parrish has no time to dwell on wrecked relationships. But country-western sweetheart Casey Elder is out of the spotlight and back in Parable, Montana. And Walker can’t ignore that his “act now, think later” passion for Casey has had consequences. Two teenage consequences! 

Keeping her children’s paternity under wraps has always been part of Casey’s plan to give them normal, uncomplicated lives. Now the best way to hold her family together seems to be to let Walker be a part of it-as her husband of convenience. Or will some secrets-like Casey’s desire to be the rancher’s wife in every way-unravel, with unforeseen results?

I will preface this review by saying that I have only read one other book in the Parable, Montana series. Big Sky Summer is the fourth of the books, the other I have read being book 2. I would have to say while I enjoyed Big Sky Summer ahead of the other book, Big Sky Mountain, there was a few things about the story that bothered me to the point where my enjoyment was affected.

I was discussing with a few people over the weekend the difficulties of reading books from your favourite authors that don’t quite get there for you. This is the case for Big Sky Summer. I have been a fan of Linda Lael Miller for quite a while now, and have really enjoyed her work, particularly the McKettricks series, but I have had issues connecting with the characters from Parable.

If you are a fan of the series and haven’t read this yet, I would probably turn away now – this could get just a bit spoilerish.

I was quite interested to read this novel. As my regular readers would know, I usually like to read a series in order, but only having access to the second book at the time, I had to make do with the book at hand. I think this is a series where you need to read all of the books in the correct order, however if I am being honest, I don’t think it would have helped me.

There just seemed to be a bunch of big black holes where information was concerned. Things weren’t mentioned when they should have been and it led to a very frustrating reading experience for me. A big thank you to my sister for listening to me rant about my issues with this. The pacing of this felt quite slow, and by the time there was any resolution, the book was over!

This is what Big Sky Summer is about: Casey is a country music superstar, Walker is a rancher. They’ve had two children together, however for some reason, Casey seems to have forbidden Walker to acknowledge them as his own. Not even his family is allowed to know about it. Also, Casey lied to him about the first child being his, but lo-and-behold, the baby fairy visits them again and only then does she confess all to Walker. Now all this deception and secret squirrel stuff is what I don’t get. Here we have Walker, who is meant to be an honest family man, and I can’t see why he goes along with this ridiculous plan for as long as he does.

So they didn’t tell the kids the truth until late in the book, however it may have helped if LLM had elaborated a little more on the backstory. I think if this had happened, maybe I would have been a little more sympathetic towards Casey and Walker. I found it very hard to connect with these characters because of how this played out. One thing I will say for this whole business is that the reactions of the children on hearing the news was actually fairly well done.

Just finally, these people need to learn the value of birth control. I can understand a condom failing but 3 sexy times, 3 condom breakages and 3 pregnancies??? I had to pick my slack, disbelieving jaw up off the floor. Seriously, should a public health warning be put out warning everyone off Walker’s little friend???

In no way is this review a slight on the author – I’m a big fan of LLM and some of her prior work will always remain among my favourites. I just got too frustrated with Big Sky Summer to enjoy it. I’m hoping that the next in the series pushes this series back into good territory.

My rating: 2 out of 5

Release Date: 28 May 2013

Purchase Links: Harlequin – Nook – Amazon

Note: I was provided with an advanced reader copy of this book by Harlequin via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

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