All hunky heroes are created equal, right? WRONG! We love our heroes. We discover a new one in every book we read, but what if we had to pick one? What if your two favorite heroes asked you the most terrifying question: Who would you choose? Welcome to a little thing we at OUAC like to call the HUNKY HERO SHOWDOWN!
Tate – McKettricks of Texas: Tate by Linda Lael Miller
Brady Wilkins – Pieces of Sky by Kaki Warner
The Summary of Tate
Tate is the eldest of three sons. His parents died tragically when he was in his late teens and the ranch was left to all three of the brothers. The McKettrick Ranch is a well oiled machine that runs smoothly without much participation required on Tate’s part. Lately though, Tate is feeling like he needs to be a more integral part of what his ancestors started. Can he bring the ranch back under his control and convince the love of his teenage years that he’s worth a second shot? Above all else, his twin daughters must come first.
“Wasn’t it only yesterday that the twins were newborns, making a peeping sound instead of squalling, like most babies, hooked up to tubes and wires, dwarfed by their incubators at the hospital in Houston? Now, suddenly, they were six. He’d be walking them down the aisle at their weddings before he knew what hit him, he thought bleakly.
He shoved one hand through his hair, longing to get back to the ranch and pull on battered jeans that had never known the heat of an iron. Shed the spiffy shirt, so fresh from the box that the starch in the fabric chafed his sign.
On the ranch, he could breathe, although he’d seriously considered moving out of the mansion, taking up residence in the old bunkhouse or a simple single-wide down by one of the bends in the creek.”
“His hands were strong, calloused from range work. Despite all that McKettrick money, he wasn’t afraid to wade into a mudhole to free a stuck cow, set fence posts in the ground, buck bales or shovel out stalls.
It was one of the reasons the locals liked him so much, made them willing to overlook the oil wells, now capped, and the ridiculously big house and nearly a hundred thousand acres of prime grassland, complete with springs and creeks and even a small river.
He was one of them.”
The Summary of Pieces of Sky
Jessica Thornton is on the run. She traveling all the way from England to New Mexico territory to escape the horrors of her past. Pregnant, alone and penniless, she fears her situation could not become any worse until their stage coach suffers a horrible accident. Fortunate for her, Brady Wilkins is also a passenger. He takes Jessica and the rest of the passengers to his nearby ranch, Rosa Roja. Brady is instantly attracted to this regal beauty with hair the color of a fiery western sunset. He knows she will be forced to stay until her and the child she carries are well enough to travel, but Brady’s not certain he can let her go. While they develop their relationship an old foe of the Wilkin’s family is back seeking vengeance and threatening the safety of all the individuals living on the ranch. Meanwhile, Jessica’s past is hunting her down, seeking to drag her back to England. Jessica knows through it all Brady would protect her, but she fears not only for her safety, but his. While the horrors of her past may want her back in England, after spending months with Brady, Jessica’s not certain if she can leave Rosa Roja…and the man who captured her heart.
“Look at me, for mercy’s sake. I am as graceless as a duck in dancing pumps. I look like I’m wearing a bustle backward, my ankles are as big as tree trunks, and my hair has turned to straw. Are you blind?”
He shrugged. “You’re pregnant.”
“Exactly. So why are you pursuing me?”
“I can’t pursue you when you’re pregnant?”
“Why would you even want to?”
He studied her for a long time. “Maybe I think you’re pretty,” he finally said. “Or maybe I like springers. Or maybe I’m thinking that someday you won’t be pregnant, so I’d better make my moves now, while I’ve got you in hand, so to speak.”
Not something the infamous Lord Byron would have said, but touching nonetheless. “But we’re so different.”
“Hell. Women. You’re going to work this to death, aren’t you?” His crooked grin took some of the sting out of his words.
“I am simply trying to understand.”
“It’s not complicated. When I look at you, I don’t see differences. I see possibilities.”
“Of everything. Anything. A better life. A better me.” He spread his big hands in a palms-up gesture. “I don’t know how else to say it.”
How else indeed? She almost went dewy eyed. In less than a dozen words he had captured her heart and put prissy Lord Byron to shame.