Saturday, January 18, 2014

REVIEW: The Baby Race by Elysa Hendricks

***This book was originally reviewed for Storm Goddess Book Reviews.***


Race Reed doesn’t want a wife, but to save his ranch he needs a baby. To gain custody of her stepsister, Claire Jensen needs a husband, but she wants love. Wants and needs are bound to clash when they run The Baby Race. Race Reed reserves his love and attention for the abused horses he cares for on his ranch. Because his mother changed husbands as often as she changed clothes, doesn’t believe in wedded bliss. Now to save his ranch he needs the money his paternal grandmother is offering as a marriage incentive. The bizarre contest she’s set up between him and his two cousins to produce her first great-grandchild is another matter. His only option – cheat in The Baby Race. Claire Jensen wants two things out of life, home and family. During her younger years she never questioned her father’s nomadic lifestyle as he hunted for treasure, but as she grew older she longed to put down roots. When her father remarried and gave Claire a stepmother and baby stepsister, she’d thought her prayers were answered. Instead, she took over the parental role to her stepsister as her father and stepmother continued to search the world for treasure. In every way that matters, the six-year-old is Claire’s daughter. When Claire’s father and stepmother are killed on their latest quest for treasure, without a steady job, husband or home, Claire is about to lose custody of her young stepsister. Her only option – run the The Baby Race.


The Baby Race is really a highly emotional story. One minute you’re full of hope, and the next you want to cry…or just smack someone *cough*Race*cough*. Put together a large, close-knit family, a small town, and a cowboy, then throw in an innocent, naïve woman and her kid stepsister (and prospective adopted daughter) and you get a whirlwind of drama.

This is totally a story that I can easily get caught up in, and I did, but there were times I really wanted to slap Race for saying or doing something completely boneheaded. The grandmother is the one that sets everything in motion, but while I understand her motives, I don’t like how she went about it, though I don’t think anyone can argue with the results lol.

The writing style was a little daunting as we frequently switched focus from Claire to Race without any warning, and the passage of time wasn’t always easy to keep up with. However, that being said, it’s still easy enough to follow and the journey is so very sweet with a very satisfying ending. The only thing I was left wondering is what the ultimate fate of Race’s ranch, as that was still a little unclear, but that’s really just a side note, and doesn’t impact the bigger picture.

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