SAMANTHA AND THE COWBOY
Samantha Reynolds and her family are struggling to keep afloat. With their father dead, their mother depressed, and the children growing fast, they're in trouble. But when Samantha sees a sign at the local general store, she has hope.
The sign calls for boys, 14 and older to help on a cattle drive and be paid $100. Samantha figures that since she's 16, she can do it. So she sacrifices her long, cascading curls, straps tough fabric to bind her bosom, and borrows her little brother's clothing to partake in the drive.
At the interview, she at first gets turned down by Jake Vaughn, the trail boss. But out of pity, handsome cowhand Matthew Hart hires her. He feels a special connection to her, like she's a younger version of himself. Samantha, however, begins to fall in love. Will the cowhands discover her true identity?
This novel was full to the brim with action, as every scene led to a new problem. Don't worry, though, this plot nevers gets too overloaded. With romantic scenes that truly engulf you so much you forget that you're only reading a book, the description was right on target. Though slightly predictable, this book was thoroughly enjoyable. SWEET (May, 272 pp., $4.99)