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on November 1, 2012
A Cowboy for Christmas, the final book in Lori Wilde's Jubilee, Texas trilogy, is a poignant yet heartwarming romance between a widow and her newfound brother-in-law.

Following her husband's death in Afghanistan, Lissette Moncrief is stunned when she learns Jake named his half-brother, Rafferty Jones, as the beneficiary of his military life insurance and death benefits. The discovery that her son, Kyle, is slowly going deaf turns her world upside down and sends her into panic mode. Determined to find financial security and stand on her own two feet, she creatively comes up with a plan to expand her bakery business. But when Rafferty arrives in Jubilee to give Lissettte the money that rightfully belongs to her and Kyle, will Lissette forgo her independence and accept the charming cowboy's offer of help?

Lissette's marriage to Jake was over long before his death, so while she is saddened by his loss, she has quickly picked up the pieces of her life. Now realizing how much of herself she gave up in order to keep the peace with her troubled husband, Lissette is struggling to change from the passive, people pleasing person she has become. Lissette carefully weighs her options and does not rush into making decisions which often leads to her giving in to other people's demands rather than rock the boat by expressing her own opinions.

Rafferty has a weakness for helping people in need. Caring for his mentally unstable mother and younger siblings forced him to grow up way too fast. His strong sense of responsibility will not allow him to walk away from Lissette and Kyle so he cleverly devises a plan that will keep him in Jubilee where he can help Lissette without wounding her pride.

Rafferty and Lissette are attracted to one another from their very first meeting, but neither of them is ready for a serious relationship. Rafferty is sensitive to Lissette's need to stand on her own and he is careful not to push her in a direction she is not ready to go. He is supportive without being overbearing and he provides her with some much needed self-confidence. Lissette's transformation from meek and mild to more assertive is a slow but realistic process. It is not easy to change lifelong habits, but with Rafferty's assistance, Lissette stands her ground and emerges from a few skirmishes a much stronger woman.

A secondary storyline involving Lissette's mother-in-law, Claudia provides added conflict. Claudia's devastation over Jake's death is compounded by Rafferty's arrival in Jubilee. Deeply ashamed by her past actions, Claudia is terrified her secret will be revealed and she strikes out at Lissette in fear.

A Cowboy for Christmas is more serious than the other books in the Jubilee, Texas series. Lori Wilde deftly handles some difficult subjects with sensitivity and without angst. The romance between Lissette and Rafferty is sweet and while they fall in love over a short period of time, it never feels forced or rushed.

A Cowboy for Christmas is delightful novel with appealing characters and a sensational storyline that I highly recommend.

I received a complimentary copy for review.
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on November 11, 2012
OK First I normally don't review a lot of books that I read. I know I should but sometimes well I forget. This book however was definately worthy of a review.
I cried, I laughed and I danced at some point during the book. From the moment I read the first chapter this author had me. She brought me into the world of Lissette and Rafferty and Kyle. It was like you were right there with Lissette at first and then enters Rafferty after she bangs into his truck not knowing of course whom she really is Rafferty was sucked right in and so was I.

I will tell you that I couldn't put the book down not even for a second. I was in there world and I wanted to see what happened next and the love that these characters had between them and the learning that came full circle with both of them was the greatest. I think that it all came to a close a bit too soon for me but it was ok cause it felt right. You know?

I really don't want to give any of the book away so I will tell you. Pick up the book and read it and make sure your not cooking or in my case baking at the time you read it cause I burned a bunch of cookies but it was well worth it just for the read of the fantastic book.
Enjoy it I know I did.

Smiles
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on November 16, 2012
Lori Wilde takes us on another trip to Jubilee Texas and it's the fall of the year, and the perfect time for romance.

Lissette is the mother of a young son and a recent widow. Her husband Jake was killed in Afghanistan and although their relationship was troubled, she is surprised to find that he has left all of his military benefits and funds to a half brother she didn't even know existed. As she recovers from this shock things only get worse when she learns that her little boy, Kyle is going deaf. Having always been the type of person to follow others' leads and advice, Lissy finds that she must learn to make her own decisions and speak her mind if she is to do what is best for herself and her son.

Rafferty Jones is your typical handsome cowboy, chivalrous, good with horses and always ready to help a lady in distress. He is also the half brother that has received a whole lot of money that he feels isn't rightly his. So he travels to meet his brother's widow and young son with the intention of giving them Jake's money. Not sure what to expect, he is surprised at his instant attraction to Lissy and her son and he decides that not only does he need to find a way to get a stubborn Lissy to accept the money, but he needs to find a reason to stay in Jubilee to explore the growing feelings they have for one another.

This is a classic love story with two very appealing protagonists and some interesting secondary characters. Jake's mother is a big part of Lissy and Kyle's life, but is resentful of Rafferty's presence in their lives since he is the product of her husband's long ago affair with Rafferty's mother. Claudia is also harboring her own dark secret about her role in the very hard life Rafferty had as a child. Lissy's family plays a role too and are very vocal about the decisions she is making in regard to Kyle's future as a deaf child.

I enjoyed this story. The addition of Kyle's hearing impairment and his sign language interactions with Rafferty really adds to the story and Lissy and Rafferty's emotions are very realistic as they wade through the memories, insecurities, guilt and desire as they work to define and accept if a future is possible for them. A familiar themed ending and a beautiful Christmas gift makes this a nice reading choice if you're looking for a Christmas romance.
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on November 9, 2012
Lissette has been through more than her fair share of heartache recently, she's lost her husband and found out her young son is slowly becoming deaf. Even worse, she's broke because her husband decided to name his never-mentioned half brother as his beneficiary.

Determined to figure it out all by herself, Lissette is shaken when the half brother shows up on her doorstep. Rafferty has only just found out about his inheritance and his brother's family, and he feels compelled to meet them. He is immediately drawn to both Lissette and her son. Unfortantely, some people aren't happy about him being in town, especially Lissette's mother-in-law. In the past, she did everything she could to make sure Rafferty was not a part of her family's life.

Lissette and Rafferty initially fight their mutual attraction, but it is too much for them. Still, is it enough to make a future? Or will they just have a few hot memories?

A Cowboy for Christmas doesn't cover new ground in the romance genre, but the characters are endearing and the heat is on high. Plus, the side story about Lissette's son and his medical condition tugs at your heart. In the beginning, I found myself full of questions . . . Why would Lissette's huband leave his family out in the cold? How did Rafferty not figure out who Lissette was the first time he met her?

But, guess what? When I started getting into the story, I only cared about these two people getting together and finding a way to heal--to finally find love and start a new life. Sometimes it's all about the escape. And A Cowboy for Christmas is just that. It's an enjoyable and endearing journey!

One note for fans of Christmastime . . . it is strangely absent from a book with the holiday in the title, only appearing in the end pages. I didn't want readers to be disappointed that the characters don't fall in love under mistletoe while sipping egg nog and unwrapping presents. But for those who have ever wished of receiving a cowboy for Christmas, you won't be disappointed.

Note: I received a complimentary copy for review purposes. A positive review was not requested or guaranteed; the opinions expressed are my own.
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on December 13, 2012
The last thing on Lissette's mind is the holiday's. She got devastating news from the doctor about her son and she has NO idea how she'll afford everything her son will soon require, her husband isn't around to help, she needs to expand her business, and on top of that, she receives yet another shock (not telling....no spoilers here!). How much can one woman handle?

Rafferty wants to get into Jubilee, do what he has to do, and get right back out. No one and nothing has ever welcomed him to Jubilee before, and someone backing into his truck his first day in Jubilee isn't exactly a good start to his dreaded trip. After meeting Lissette, Rafferty knows that his task isn't going to be as easy and quick as he had planned, but it just may end up being the welcome that he's always wanted.

I really like Lori's books! She got me hooked with the Twilight, Texas series, and her Jubilee, Texas series is keeping me hooked. A Cowboy for Christmas was a great Christmas read, although it had a lot of character introspection that I skimmed over. Other than that, it was another good one from Lori!!

My FULL REVIEW at: solefulreader. com
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on December 17, 2012
Every time I read a book written by Lori Wilde, I feel myself being swept away into a whole new world. A world that's always filled with a little bit of heartache,lots of determination, people who have a lot of courage, but most of all....they are always filled lots of love.

In this one...
Lissette lost her husband six months ago to war, and he left all his insurance money to a half brother, Rafferty Jones, a man that she had never met. In a way she felt guilty about her husband's death. If he'd lived she doubted their marriage would have survived much longer anyway. She had suspected him of cheating on her when she'd spotted his truck at the no tell motel on the outskirts of town. Besides that, when he was home on leave- he'd totally shut her and Kyle out of his life, and he was drinking more and more.

And as if that's not enough heartache... she just found out that morning at the doctor's office- that her young son is slowly losing his hearing, and there is nothing anyone can do about it.

Rafferty Jones might have grown up with nothing and lived his young life in poverty with his drunken whore of a mother figure, but he grew up to make something of himself. He also made sure his younger siblings were well taken care of, and he'd gotten his mother the mental help she needed, too. Rafferty was flabbergasted that the brother he'd only met once, left him all of his insurance money and survival benefits. He new the only right thing to do was to turn it over to Jake's widow and his son. He heads out to Jubilee, Tx. to do just that, but things didn't go quite the way he'd pictured it.

Would I recommend this book? Yes, I certainly would. In a heart beat, in fact!
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on November 19, 2012
I love the Jubilee Texas Series and I have to admit I'm a little sad this is the final book in the series. However, this is a REALLY nice way to end the series. I'm a fan of Lori Wilde's and I just wanted to read this book. I didn't really know what it was actually all about. Sure, I knew it was a Christmas story featuring Lissette but that was about it.

I'm a series reader. I didn't discover Ms. Wilde until a little bit before the second Jubilee Texas book, The Cowboy and the Princess. I didn't get a chance to go back and read the first book in the series, The Cowboy Takes a Bride, but I will. I love series because they give you a chance to reconnect with characters in previous books. You are able to fall in love with other characters before they actually get their own books. Lori is very good at giving her series books that complement each other but can still stand alone.

Lissette is a go with the flow kind of girl. She pretty much lets anyone and everyone bulldoze their way over her. She is a twenty-nine-year-old widow and single mother of a two-year old son named Kyle. Her husband Jake was killed in Afghanistan on the Fourth of July. Three months later, while still struggling with her new life, Lissette receives news regarding Kyle no mother wants to hear. To make matters worse, Lissette has no money and no health insurance for her child. It appears, the always loving Jake, didn't leave his life insurance or military death benefits to his wife and child, instead he left everything to his half-brother which Lissette didn't even know existed.

When Lissette's day just can't get any worse, she backs her vehicle into a truck that belongs to a sexy California cowboy named Rafferty Jones. He isn't entirely what or who he appears to be. I fall for Rafferty immediately and I think Lissette did as well.

Rafferty Jones is Jake Moncrief's half brother. He has no intentions on getting involved with his brother's wife. He just wants to give her the money Jake left to him and leave to go back to his ranch in California, as soon as possible. Lissette refuses to take the money Rafferty offers her even though she desperately needs it. Rafferty knows in his heart Jake left the money to him so that he could be sure that Lissette and Kyle were taken care of. Rafferty has to come up with some way to get her the money without her knowing that it came from him. He spends almost a month doing just that.

There is no doubt that both Lissette and Rafferty were attracted to each other from the start but Jake stood in their way. Lissette was attracted to Rafferty because he was EVERYTHING Jake wasn't. Rafferty is a man a woman can count on. He steps in when things need to be done but he doesn't take control of the situation. He's supportive of Lissette and HER decisions, without pushing his own thoughts or opinions on her. More importantly, he loves Kyle.

I love this book because you're able to see the transformation in Lissette. She's able to bend and survive, but not break like the dandelion Rafferty calls her.

While reading Lori's books, I tend to come away with various quotes that stick with me. I can't figure out which one is my favorite, so I picked two. The first is, "For anyone to connect with another human being we have to allow ourselves to be fully seen and heard for who we are." The second being, "Accept your losses and forgive your mistakes, then you can embrace a happy future." These two quotes both apply to Lissette. She was constantly being asked what she wanted, not realizing that she was always a follower. One of the great things about Lissette and the people around her, is that once Lissette started standing on her own, the people around her didn't get mad or upset with her. They simply said that it was about time.

A couple of things happened with this book that I didn't see coming. Jake isn't the person I thought he was and this book is going to make you cry. But after the tears are gone, you are rewarded with not one, but four recipes, courtesy of Lissette.

As a reader, I'm very glad that Lori introduced me to the people and the town of Jubilee, Texas.

Reviewed a review copy from Edelweiss.

Reviewed for Read Your Writes Book Reviews
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on November 11, 2012
The holiday season is arriving but Lissette Moncrief is having a hard time getting into the spirit. Her husband Jake was killed-in-action and she recently found out that her beautiful son Kyle is going deaf. She needs money to give her son the best care but unfortunately, her husband left all his benefits to his half-brother; a man she's never even met.

Rafferty Jones hasn't had the perfect life but his love of horses turned into a profitable career. He has plenty of money in the bank. When his half-brother is killed Rafferty cannot in good conscience keep the money that Jake left him. Rafferty knows that Jake left a family in Texas that could use the money a great deal more than he. However, Rafferty never counted on Jake's wife making him go weak in the knees or her stubborn nature.

Lisette is not about to take charity from man she doesn't know even if she does need it. Rafferty is determined to provide for Lissette and Kyle. There is no way he is turning his back on them when there is something he can do to help. Will Lissette and Rafferty find love during the holiday's or will these two independent people go their separate ways?

A Cowboy for Christmas expands the fantastic Jubilee, Texas series from author Lori Wilde. A Cowboy for Christmas is filled with holiday goodness and high emotions. The first few pages of this book took my breath away. I was touched deeply by the profound emotions that Lissette is feeling as she confronts the future ahead of her. I ached for this woman and her son. I so wanted a quick fix for her but admired her depth of character as she tried to do things on her own. Oh, and Rafferty...this man gave me chills with his good looks and his charismatic personality. Not only does he have a cool name but he is also one stand-up character.

Rafferty and Lissette's love story is absolutely stunning! The many components that Ms. Wilde put together to make this outstanding story almost make me weep at the beauty of it. I just love a story that is filled with intense emotions and this one most definitely is. Whether it's Rafferty, Lissette or her mother-in-law you can feel their emotions, the strife that each of them are experiencing or have experienced. Ms. Wilde does an amazing job of drawing her readers into the story.

A Cowboy for Christmas is the third book in the Jubilee, Texas series but it can be read as a stand-alone. However, I recommend this entire series because these stories are keepers. They give you unforgettable characters and romances that stay with you long after the last page.

If there is one book that you pick up this holiday season make it A Cowboy for Christmas and I swear you won't be disappointed. This is like one of those Hallmark holiday movies only a million times better!

Reviewed by Miranda for Joyfully Reviewed
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on January 6, 2013
A Cowboy for Christmas: A Jubilee, Texas Novel

Lissette Moncrief always had a thing for cowboys so it was no wonder a fortune teller told her one was in her future! She and Jake had a whirl wind romance and ended up married three months later, but bull riding lost its charm and when his buddy died in Afghanistan he enlisted. When Jake returned from war, he was a different person and she discovered that he cheated on her as well, he didn't want her to stay in military housing but a ranch they bought and settled her in Jublilee, Texas which was close to his mom so she didn't mind as she had their son to care about. Just as she learned her little boy was slowly losing his hearing and there was nothing she could do to fix it, she backed into another truck!

Rafferty Jones was on a mission to help his step brother as he had helped him when Rafferty needed him, oh he could have just mailed to papers to his brother's widow instead of driving all the way from California but he felt the need to hand over his death benefit check in person, but he never expected the stubborn woman to refuse!
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on February 22, 2014
Reviewed by Jen
Book provided by TLC Book Tours for review
Review originally posted at Romancing the Book

So here’s the good news. While this is book 3 in the series, it stands completely on it’s own. I should know. I didn’t realize until I was part way through and a few couples popped up and I thought “I’d bet they had a book” and I was right. As with all connected series, it’s the return of those beloved characters that make the reading experience all the more enjoyable.

With A Cowboy for Christmas, Ms Wilde throws out quite a few issues into one book. From page one, the reader learns that Lissy is a military widow and just discovered that her child is losing his hearing. As the book develops, she explores PTSD and even childhood neglect. Sometimes the book felt just a little overwhelming as there was just so much going on in addition to the romance between Lissy and Rafferty.

Now what really made this book for me was the characters and how they dealt with all that Ms Wilde threw at them. Lissy is quite a strong female lead considering she is dealing with deaf child, a clingy mother-in-law, controlling family, and brother-in-law that she’s attracted to… on top of starting her own business. And then Rafferty (the aforementioned brother-in-law), is just trying to do the right thing by helping his brother’s widow. But that’s what he does… helps others. And he doesn’t whine about how hard his life had been… although it definitely shaped the man he became.

For me, all the child, Kyle, was the scene stealer. His story tore at my heart and watching Lissy and Rafferty with him just kept me turning the pages. And it was heart-warming as Lissy had to learn about childhood deafness and the options on how to raise him.

In the end, I really enjoyed this book and am now looking forward to hunting down the rest of this series. If you enjoy small town romances, pick up this series.
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