In drought-riddled Bandera County, tempers are heating up between the sheep ranchers and their neighbors, the cattlemen. So when her fences are cut, wooly gatherer Bailey MacShane takes matters into her own hands and goes after the culprits, getting herself entangled with the head of the cattlemen's group, Zack Rawlins.
Though she wears men's clothing and can out shoot, out track and out herd most men in the county, Bailey is secretly in love with Zack. But it seems like the more they rile one another the closer they get. Zack, however, is courting the most beautiful girl in town, so Bailey doesn't stand a chance until the day Zack gets so angry he kisses her in front of the entire population at the rodeo.
Suddenly Zack sees Bailey in an entirely new light and when one evening of friendly drinking ends up with lovemaking, each one knows their relationship has changed. Now Zack is out to woo Bailey, even if he has to work on her ranch and learn the sheep business.
Still, Bailey's stubbornness, Zack's plan for a cease fire between the ranchers, the drought and a vicious cougar on the prowl complicate the situation. But with warmth and a true understanding of a woman's heart, Adrienne de Wolfe brings these two special people together.
TEXAS WILDCAT is a marvelous conclusion to Ms. de Wolfe's Texas trilogy. Three dimensional characters, snappy dialogue, sharp repartee, a realistic portrait of the era-as well as plenty of passion-make this a gem. SENSUAL (June, 378 pp., $5.99)