Customer Reviews: Cowboy Casanova (Rough Riders Book 12)
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on December 6, 2011
No warning needed Mz. James, bring it-- and can we get a big Woo Hoo for the HOT AS HELL cover? IMO, this is the hottest cover of the series, and after reading the book, it's as fitting as they come--the mysteriously sexy DOM rancher with the perfect body. I can't stop drooling, I mean staring at it.
As I'm gathering my thoughts to write this review I'm wondering who the heck is going to read it, because everyone I know will be glued to their e-readers not giving a flying flip what I have to say about it. Then, I'm also thinking, what can I possibly say about one of Lorelei James' books, without giving away the story, that hasn't been said before? Like, "How does she keep coming up with these amazing stories?" "The cowboys are to DIE for!" "The heroines are as strong and likable as the heroes." "The sex is panty-melting, smoking hot, erotic, and passionate." Then there is always the array of adjectives describing her writing like, fresh, brilliant, impressive, spectacular, wonderful, terrific, excellent, fabulous, phenomenal, witty, talented, and great-- to name a few. If only I had the imagination, creativity, or vocabulary to write something new to articulate my thoughts. So, please accept my apology in advance for any recurring statements or phrases used when describing this book and/or LJ's writing because Cowboy Casanova is all of those things and oh-so-much more. I'm going to give it my best shot!
We knew from past books Bennett McKay was going to be a naughty, raunchy, intense, dirty boy and wasn't I glad he more than lived up to his reputation. But, what we didn't know about him was his softer side and how isolated he felt from his family. He's a middle child and with Quinn being the oldest and Chase being a famous bull rider and the youngest, Ben found himself hanging in the shadows or just staying out of everyone's way. He's known as the family peacekeeper and some of us know how stressful that can be. The picture Lorelei James painted of his character had me feeling his pain and literally hurting along with him, especially when we saw glimpses of his life before he discovered what he needed to truly be himself. I loved that he found a group of friends he could share "interests" with because for the longest he felt all alone and wasn't comfortable acting on his so-called perversions. There are several emotional and heart-felt moments for him and Ainsley, but also for him and some of the other family members. There is one scene with his mother that had me teary eyed. So I'm giving you fair warning, you may want to keep a box of Kleenex close by.
I know I, as well as others have mentioned it before, but the female characters in the Rough Rides are strong, independent, non-whinny, sexy, and not afraid nor do they shy away from their sexuality. I love it that they love sex as much as their men do and they all know how to keep their men satisfied and coming back for more. Obviously, since they are all multiplying like rabbits. And Ainsley was no exception. From what we already knew about Ben, there was no doubt it would take a special woman to be his mate and I admit I was a little nervous about her character because we had not met her in any of the previous books. Yet, she turned out to be bold, professional, sassy but kind, loyal, brave, and though it took her a while to admit it, she was a true submissive. Once she realized it, with Ben's help, she thrived in the relationship. Her bratty behavior and attitude kept her in trouble, and as fun as it was at first for Ben to "discipline" her, it also got very intense, but only because she didn't know how to let go and let Ben take care of her. Her insecurities about the lifestyle were real and it was hard at times to read through her punishment/discipline, but at the same time it was liberating on several levels to see her push through. I won't say she's my favorite, because hell, they all are, but she will fit in just fine with the other adorable and independent women who have the McKay men wrapped around their fingers.
Things I loved about this book were Ben and Ainsley as a couple, the scenes with the family that reminded me why I love them all so much, the laugh out loud moments as well as the teary ones, LJ's knowledge of the BDSM lifestyle with relation to the D/s relationship, the new characters we met, and always a favorite of mine--the panty blazing dirty-talk dialog.
Favorite Sexy Quote: BEN: "You know it's not that civilized with me. Sex with me is raw, dirty and demanding, but you'll never feel there's something missing because I will see to your needs above my own. Every. Single. Time."
Favorite Funny Quote: BEN: "It's just all the McKays are comin', which means all of their kids. God love'em, but I'm ready to schedule a vasectomy after about an hour......"
A panicked look crossed her face. "I'll never keep the names straight. I asked your cousin.....Keely? If they'd developed a smart phone app for the family tree. I was kidding but her husband seemed serious about it."
Have you ever been completely attached and in love with a series and then after several books they all seem to be the same story with a different cover and characters? With 12 books in the series, and as much as I love the series, I couldn't help but think "eventually, the stories will start sounding the same." I mean, why not, it happens all the time to the best of authors, right? Well, goes to show what I know or don't know, because this has NOT happened with the Rough Riders Series. And, Cowboy Casanova is in a league of its own. I am confident you will enjoy it as much as I did.
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on December 6, 2011
Ben McKay is part of a very large family. You can't move around Sundance, WY without bumping into a McKay and Ben doesn't want anyone in his family to know how he enjoys his sex so he heads out of town where he is a member of a private club.

Ainsley Hamilton has just got a promotion and is president of a new bank in the same town of Sundance, WY. She's recently gotten divorced and wants to explore her sexuality but not where her potential customers might bump into her. She has a good friend though elsewhere in WY who belongs to a private club and is willing to take her in as a guest.

There Ainsley meets Dom Bennett. They are attracted to each other and explore things Ainsley never experienced before.

However, each is shocked when they see each other in Sundance. Now what? Do they continue seeing each other out of Sundance? In Sundance? Or not at all? Each has a lot to loose if the folks in town learn of their antics but can they even trust each other?

There are a few folks that as soon as they see a good review for one of Ms James' books scream fan girl, that's why it has a good review. Okay, I'm going to admit, yes, I'm a fan girl. I'm a fan girl of well written books, books that get me involved with the characters and leave me wanting more.

One of the complaints I see in some reviews is the dialog and regional flare that is used in Ms James' books. Well, let me put it this way. The first time I visited my husband's extended family I had to keep reminding myself that they were speaking English. I know they were but they dropped the letter R where it belonged and put it places it didn't. If I were talented enough to write a book, I'd put that regional way of speaking in it. Ms James' is fourth generation South Dakotan so I suspect that she knows how folks speak in that neck of the woods and I appreciate her sharing it those of us who don't.

Not only does she share the regional dialect but she shares the land. Some how she is able to describe the land so you can visualize it. I've seen pictures of Wyoming and it looks really pretty but Ms James gives you the pretty and the not so pretty. Hey, the weather isn't always perfect and they have lots of white stuff out there which makes working outside miserable!

But I think the biggest reason I'm a fan girl is her characters. In this story, Ben, the main character shows several different facets of his personality. He's a quite hard working cowboy but he's also a take charge kind of guy. Yet, due to some sexual preferences that he prefers to keep quiet, he shows a vulnerable side. Ainsley, the main female character, is a professional woman who after a divorce is trying to explore a sexual side of herself that she has never let herself explore. She doesn't want to do it near where she works because she's afraid that it will affect her professional standing and possibly cause her to loose her job. At work, she's decisive but her personal life is a bit up in the air. These well rounded characters that have more than one side make them real and believable. After all, people are complex beings.

Now, this is an erotic romance so there has to be sex. I love a book where the sex moves the story forward and isn't just thrown in there as filler or just because some sort of action has to happen. This story has kinky sex as a main theme but it isn't the only thing going on in the story. Yes, it's well done and titillating but it also fits the story. I have to say, this is the kinkiest sex that Ms James' has ever written and she did a terrific job!

Cowboy Casanova is also part of Ms James' series on the McKay family. Different members of the family show up in this book. Quinn and Ben work together so there are plenty of scenes with those two. But, the scenes that touched me the most were much further in the story. One of the younger McKay's learns Ben's secret and wants to help. This scene brought forth the love that this family has for each other and how far they are willing to go out on a limb for each other.

As usual, I highly recommend this book. It has everything a love in a good book; great characters, good story line, and a feeling like you are there.

With each of these stories I become more and more tempted to head out west, even if they do have lots of that white stuff! (Maybe, I should try during the summer.)
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on December 12, 2011
Another hit for Ms. James. I love this series and I was not disappointed with the newest Rough Riders' book. This was Ben's story. He is the middle child and thinks he can hide in the background. He tries to hide his dominant/sexual side from his family. Thank goodness he has friends who understand him and want the same things. He really needed the Rawhide Club and his friends there. However, if he ever bothered to talk to his brothers and cousins, especially Cam, he would see he's not much different than they are. Plus there are several of his cousins who feel the middle child syndrome as well. I'm so happy that there was a much softer and hidden inner sweetheart to Bennett "The Beastly Dom". There are so many McKays to love and Ben was at the top of my list. Ainsley is the President of the new bank and a sub. He meets her at the Club, but then sees her at the bank and they try out a D/s relationship for a short time. This is a D/s relationship more about Ben's need to be totally in charge and not the slave/Master or people into pain type of D/s relationship. There are some scenes that people who don't like to read D/s books may not like, but it's more D/s light and leaning more toward the emotional needs of D/s couples. I thought Ms. James handled it perfectly. As with all RR books, it's about family, and the McKays are one huge family. I love how the McKays get in each others business but they also rally around each other when needed. When Ben needed his brothers, they were all there, all of them. This is an erotic romance so there was plently of hot sex and a wonderful HEA. The only problem I have with this book is that I have to wait another 6 months for the next book in this series to come out. The waits seem longer and longer with each book. I'm not a patient person. This is another fantastic book by the NY Times Bestselling Author and I'm sure she'll be getting lots of awards for this one. Well done.
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on November 19, 2013
Only reason I gave this a four is because of the BDSM. But the story between Ben & Winslet was so sweet. Two people looking for someone to love them for who they where, to except them for who the where.

Again I almost did not buy this book in this series because of the type of sexual content. It's not my thing. But I actually loved the story despite the sexual aspect.
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on July 5, 2014
ok so I love all the McKay man but I just couldn't get into this one. I didn't like how it was all sex and not much story. Don't get me wrong the sex was hot but just not what I'm into. It's probably the same reason why I didn't like 50 Shades of Gray. To each his own. Just not my thing. I'd rather have more romance and less kinky sex, I guess.
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on June 25, 2013
Oh, those McKay cowboys . . . Gotta love 'em -- sooo alpha! Not a big fan of BDSM, but the characters were so nicely drawn . . . Ben is such a sweet character -- so tough and domineering on the outside, so thoughtful and a little insecure on the inside. And Ainsley is such a good match for him -- so uptight but wanting to cut loose. Keep on writing, Lorelei!
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on December 7, 2011
As Ms James has explored the personalities and relationships of the McKay clan, readers have encountered just about every kind of man on the planet. There is no doubt, however, that all those McKay men are alpha to the core and definitely live their individual lives as they choose and in spite of strong family connections and very interactive exchanges with brothers and cousins, these guys are who they are. No one is more determined to accept who he is or live according to his own reality than Bennet McKay, the quiet brother to Quinn and Chase (and now Gavin) and a man who is determined to call the shots in his own life after coming to peace with who he is. All the McKay men have a smattering of kink in their love relationships but Ben is all out Dom and dominant to the core, and he is OK with that. Finding a woman who can accept him in totality is the problem and a possibility Ben has just about decided won't come true for him. On the surface this is far and away filled with the BDSM kind of dom/sub relationships and explores that lifestyle far more overtly than any in this series. Yet after reading it and re-reading some passages, I really think that while this is Ben and Ainsley's "thing" this book is far more about a man who has always been "invisible" to his family--or so he always thought--and one who has now come to peace with who he is, regardless if anyone else can accept that. He fears rejection as do many in that lifestyle, but ultimately he fears being alone, never finding the one who is his emotional anchor, and being always the poster child for the quintessential "middle child" and the one who just plods along while the more charismatic members of the family take the spotlight. Ben is almost OK with that, but he still needs to feel he is a valued part of his family and important to someone. This is also a book about choices, about viewing oneself honestly, about living in a way that is fulfilling to one's own inner person. It is a book about the journey of discovery that even a 32 year old man can make that will give him a new perspective as he not only sees himself accurately but realizes for the first time how he is viewed by some important people in his life. As always, Lorelei James has captured the essence of her characters, brought in the inevitable interaction of the main characters with others in the McKay family, as well as exposed the reader a bit more to the reality of who the long-missing and now present oldest brother in Ben's family. I wonder what's in store for him? If the BDSM components are troubling, a reader may not like this book. But I challenge readers to look beyond those aspects and to see the struggle and growing that is going on with the the hero and heroine. It is truly a terrific read!
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on April 21, 2014

He was a little immature for being a Dom. I mean why would he punish her by bringing out the instrument that was one of her hard limits, besides to be cruel?!?! Other than that I felt she was a little ... Dull.
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on December 2, 2012
I really enjoy the Rough Riders series, however I have to say this is not my favourite. While it is enjoyable, for me it is lacking the little touches of humour and personality that some of the other books have and I found some of the writing a bit hard to believe.....still a well written good read.
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on June 18, 2015
Another great work. Ben has always been the strong silent type. Now we get to see what's going on underneath that quiet brooding exterior. Not so surprising at this point in the series, another strong alpha male dedicated to the principle of "any time, any where". You'll enjoy.
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