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Trial by Fire by BA Tortuga
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Trial by Fire

by BA Tortuga

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What a fantastic novel! ‘Trial by Fire’ is action-packed, emotionally intense, full of hot cowboys from two continents, and an utterly charming story. The setup is simple: two families fight for the right to raise a little girl left an orphan when her parents die in an airplane crash. One family runs a huge rodeo operation in the US, the other an enormous cattle station in Australia. Both don’t have to worry about money, and neither is willing to give an inch where the little girl is concerned. There is confrontation from page one, including fistfights, arson, a kidnapping, and minor and major shouting matches. And in the middle of this huge mess there are two men, Holden and Lachlan, who have lost their siblings but have found each other. And despite all the animosity and bad blood, they soon realize there may be more between them than a shared status as little Chloe’s uncles.

Lachlan is an Aussie through and through. He is tall, strong, loves the kind of tea very few people in Texas know how to make, and is a forceful presence. Lachlan is devastated by his sister’s death. He is also determined to bring Chloe home to be with her family, convinced a two-bit rodeo family can’t possibly take proper care of her. He hasn’t spoken to his sister in years, but has missed her terribly. Not sure why she left, he has had a PI look for her and when the man tells him he found her, but she is dead and left a baby daughter behind, Lachlan is on the next plane. But as soon as he arrives he finds out not everything is as it seemed. Chloe’s father’s family are not destitute rodeo vagabonds, they are decent people who care about Chloe. Her guardian, Holden, is Chloe’s other uncle and the only one willing to listen to Lachlan at first. Lachlan has barely begun to come to grips with the situation when disaster strikes and he has no choice but to work with Holden.

Holden is a Texas cowboy with wiry strength, stubborn as two mules, and totally in love with his niece. He has no clue how to be a father - his twin brother was supposed to be the dad - but since Chloe’s parents appointed Holden her guardian, he’ll be damned before he lets anyone tell him what to do or take her away. He initially sees Lachlan as a threat, but as they get to know each other, Holden realizes Lachlan knows exactly how he feels, both having lost a sibling. Holden is also very attracted to Lachlan, and throughout the chaos that follows when everything goes to sh*t, Holden learns to appreciate the quiet man’s strength and support – proving that a true “trial by fire” is the best way to find out whether the man he thinks he is falling for is someone he can build a life with.

If you like explosively intense stories, if two main characters who could easily out-macho each other sound interesting, and if you’re looking for a suspenseful read that will leave you breathless while warming your heart, then you will probably like this novel as much as I did. I won’t quickly forget Holden and Lachlan – or Chloe – that’s for sure!


NOTE: This book was provided by Dreamspinner Press for the purpose of a review on Rainbow Book Reviews. ( )
  SerenaYates | Oct 14, 2017 |
3.5 Hearts--It's official!


I've popped my audiobook and Dreamspun Desires cherries!



It was a long search for the right narrator that didn't sound so robotic. And if anyone is going to pop my audio cherry, it should be someone memorable. And you can't forget a name like Rusty Topsfield.




I'm going to pretend this is what Rusty looks like except with ginger hair. Dreamboat.

Well, how was a first timer's take on audiobooks? I don't think it'll be something I'll run to listen to a lot. I was hesitant to trying audiobooks, so this was going to be my trial run. A book I didn't read, but had a physical copy in case it bombed.

Verdict : story didn't bomb...just the narration.
This story was flufftastic, over the top and filled with some sexual tension - a good mix for entertainment purposes. I knew ahead of time that I would need to suspend reality while reading.


Baby orphan Chloe has two uncles who want for custody, once they meet sparks fly and they fall in love. I like this guardian/battling in laws fall in love trope. Billionaire Aussie uncle Lachlan learns his sister is dead and gets a surprise when he learns she was married and had a baby. So he travels to Texas to get his niece. But his niece already has a guardian, her dead father's fraternal twin Holden. The two square off and argued, said a lot of "good deals" and angry flirted. But then a kidnapping happens by a group of the sloppiest kidnappers ever. Just horrible. An ensemble cast with big personalities get together to find the kidnapped baby, which gets solved fairly quickly...because sloppy. There was even a murder added on top of the men fighting and sexing.

And more importantly instalove.

But for this brand, it's to be expected, so no complaints here.

I think I can separate the story from the narrator...mostly. Because though Rusty, my audiobook de-virginizer, was memorable...Rusty got lazier as the story progressed especially with the accents. Hoo boy, Rusty's Texan accent was okay-ish? But he tended to mix in a lot of the Texan "good deal" with Aussie Lachlan. Rusty was reading from the text, I get it it. But the accents didn't have much distinction after a while and when more Aussies and Texans came in?





Oh those were horrible!The Australian accents sounds like a Brit/Martian/Southern person implanted a garbage disposal inside their throat.

What in the world was that?

It was distracting as hell and made me laugh for all the wrong reasons. Then I'd have to replay the damn scene to figure out what the hell was said. Like when one of the main men's dad said "I'm pooped", but the accent made it sound like I've pooped.

So there I am wondering why his father took a dump when there was custody battling going on and a baby missing. Couldn't he have excused himself to the bathroom without announcing?

Anyway, the story has a lot of action in between the fluff and over the top-ness.

The story is probably about 3.5-3.75 Hearts.
The Narration...is about 2 Hearts.

I'll audiobook again.




Whatever.




A copy proved for an honest review. " ( )
  SheReadsALot | Jun 20, 2016 |
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Can Aussie cattle station owner Lachlan find a way to give his orphaned niece a new family with Texas cowboy Holden?

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