Colorado paleontologist Lindsey Attwood is devastated to be separated from her 8-year-old daughter after the girl's father finally exercises his joint custody rights. A lifeline is thrown to her when her sister asks her to visit the rural Texas town of Big Lizard Bottoms to investigate some dinosaur tracks stolen from a local ranch. Her trip is full of unexpected surprises--a troublemaking sheepdog takes a shine to her, horse psychology classes teach her a thing or two about her social inadequacies, and a sexy cowboy named Zach awakens some long-dormant emotions. Can this neurotic single mom finally relax and learn to enjoy the simple pleasures?

Wingate's carved out a comfortable niche with her stories of city girls discovering the joys of cowboys and rural life. Lindsey is your typical overwrought romance heroine, but the eccentricities of the small town and the antics of Mr. Grits, the unruly sheepdog, add a little sweetness and humor to this unsurprising (even the mystery of who stole the dinosaur tracks is pretty transparent) tale. (Nov., 320 pp., $13.95)
Reviewed by: 
Tara Gelsomino