Party organizer Tyler O'Connell is on the fast track to her dream career. She's so close she can almost taste it. But when she returns to her family and sees her one-night stand, Alex Keller, all done up in his cowboy gear, her self-control is stretched to the breaking point....
They're worlds apart. She's a busy career girl, and Alex is a cowboy. But while getting together might not bode well for anything long-term, it more than makes up for it in sheer hot chemistry! Problem is, this is one wrangler she might want to get tied down--and tied up--to...indefinitely!
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June 01, 2011
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Excerpt from Should've Been a Cowboy by Vicki Lewis Thompson
What rotten luck. Alex Keller ended the phone call, tucked his phone in his jeans pocket and nudged Doozie into a canter. He needed to get back to the ranch house and figure out what the hell to do now that the country band he'd hired wouldn't be showing up tomorrow. He couldn't expect to get a replacement at four o'clock on a Friday afternoon, which meant no live music for the open house. Damn.
The open house had been his idea. Two months ago, after accepting a job as the first-ever marketing director for the Last Chance, he'd proposed the event to increase the ranch's visibility and establish it as the premier place to buy registered paints. Technically he was up to the challenge. He held a degree in marketing, and although he'd spent most of his career as a high-profile DJ in Chicago, he'd also been instrumental in the radio station's marketing campaigns.
But this was his first event for the ranch, and he needed it to go well. The Chances were family now that Alex's sister Josie had married Jack Chance, so the ranch's bottom line had personal significance. The Chances weren't in immediate financial danger, but spring sales had been slow. Alex had been hired to fix that.
He'd saddled Doozie earlier that afternoon, figuring a ride might settle his nerves. Instead he'd ended up with a phone call that added to his growing list of problems. Most of the issues involved keeping the invited guests dry. Rain-filled clouds hovered on the horizon and only one of the three canopies he'd ordered had shown up. Now he had no band, either.
Live music would have gone a long way toward setting the tone for tomorrow's open house, even if it rained. Sure, he could rig up a sound system and use canned music and his DJ abilities, but it wouldn't have the same feel as live music, and he couldn't be stuck behind a microphone all day.
At this point on Friday afternoon, nothing could be done about either of those glitches. He'd spent all his life in Chicago and was used to its vast resources. If one band canceled, you hired another, and if one delivery of event canopies didn't work out, you went with a different company. Jackson Hole, Wyoming, was a whole other situation, and he was screwed.
He had to make this work, though. All three of the Chance brothers--Jack, Gabe, and Nick--had put their faith in him, and he'd do his damnedest. Everyone knew Alex Keller was a hard worker, especially his ex-wife, who'd wanted him to work less and play more.
Oh, well. Crystal was back in Chicago cavorting with her new boyfriend, and he was out here in God's country, working his butt off because that's who he was. And he couldn't complain. The ranch's location, west of a little town called Shoshone in the Jackson Hole region, was spectacular.
Following his divorce last summer, he'd left Chicago and found a combination DJ/marketing director position with a radio station in Jackson. But he'd spent more time out at the Last Chance than at his apartment in Jackson and had, to his surprise, gone country. When the offer came to work for the Chance brothers, he'd jumped at it.
Slowing Doozie to a trot as he approached the barn, he glanced over at the massive, two-story ranch house, a log structure that had grown as the family had grown. Its front windows faced north with a view of the state's scenic crown jewel--the perpetually snowcapped Tetons. The acreage was worth millions, and the family wanted to keep every square foot of it, which meant the Chances were land rich and cash poor.
From what Alex had heard, Jonathan Chance Sr. had been comfortable with that, but after his death, his three sons had taken stock of the situation. They'd decided on a more aggressive breeding and...