Joint Review – Rocky Mountain Heat by Vivian Arend

Publisher: Samhain
Publish Date:
How we got this book: eARC from author

Blake Coleman is old enough to know that acting on impulse causes nothing but a heap of trouble. But when trouble’s a western-hat-wearing blonde with slim legs that go on forever, what’s a man to do? Wanting the sweet girl next door is just wrong. The responsible thing to do is keep his hands off.

Jaxi has other plans for Blake’s hands, and his heart. She may have once considered him a big brother, but that was a long time ago. She’s all grown up now and ready to convince him that she’s perfect for him. Except he can’t seem to see past the big “don’t touch” sign that’s apparently still hanging around her neck.

When Jaxi ends up living right under Blake’s nose, the undeniable heat between them slides off simmer and leaps up to barn-burning levels. However, a few of the younger six-pack Colemans have decided Jaxi’s brand of trouble is worth risking a few busted bones.

That is, if Blake’s finally ready to let go the reins and fight for what he wants…

Warning: Sexy cowboys seducing and being seduced in trucks, pool halls and barns. Droolworthy country charm, a little double-teaming, a few secrets and a whole lot of brothers to look forward to. Anyone wanna go for a ride?
*Blurb from Goodreads*

Thoughts on the Hero

E: Tortured, willfully blind, bound and determined to do what he thought was right regardless of what he really wanted.  Blake was extremely stubborn and decided that due to the age difference and the interest his younger brothers had in Jaxi that she was off limits to him.  While that was a very a good thing when Jaxi was younger, Blake found himself trapped in that pattern and as a result almost lost Jaxi for good. That same determination served a positive purpose when Blake used it to try to demonstrate his love for Jaxi in a way that she could see.

MinnChica – Once Blake got over his stubborn and mule-headed tendencies, I feel in love with him. I could see why he didn’t want to be a total perv and go for the younger girl, but it was also painfully obvious that he was head over heels in love with her. Once he started “wooing” her I couldn’t believe how romantic he was. I loved that he took a step back from the physical and really romanced her the way he thought she deserved. I would fall for that cowboy!

Lou: Blake seemed to be a nice guy who wanted to do the right thing, and battled with himself with his attraction to Jaxi when she was 18. Though I thought it was really silly of him to tell his brothers he had no interest in Jaxi, so go ahead and try your luck in the beginning. But when he kept pushing Jax away, it became very irritating. And I have no idea how he was so OK and cool about what happened after which I’ll explain in Dislike section, it made me go WTF.

Has: I also liked Blake, and definitely love the fact he didn’t want to go after Jaxi because of their age difference. However, I also got frustrated with him as well when he kept ignoring or pushing Jaxi away especially when she made it very clear that she wanted him  I also agree with Lou about that aspect, but I will elaborate further in the later in the review, but I didn’t find Blake would have stood back like he did for so long with the strength of his feelings for Jaxi and without any real tensions with his brothers. And I think this affected the believability of the romance between them.

Thoughts on the Heroine

E: Jaxi was smart, determined, innovative and desperate at times.  She knew what she wanted and she came up with a plan so that if the opportunity arose she was prepared.  She was somewhat self-centered because she never noticed how her presence was affecting Blake’s brothers.  She assumed that because she felt one way for them, they would continue to feel the same.  Jaxi also put up with a lot of rejection from Blake yet she continued working towards her goal.

MinnChica: Oh Jaxi. Poor girl knew exactly what she wanted in life, who she wanted to spend it with, and how she wants her future to go. She is desperate for Blake and will do just about anything to get him to see her as an adult and not a little girl. Although I understand her motivation for doing what she did to push Blake into accepting her, I did think her actions were a little childish. But, at the same time, she did put up with a whole lot of heart break and disappointment from Blake, so….

Lou: I really liked Jaxi at first, but then came the WTF moment when you realised that half of the Cole brothers lusted after Jaxi. And I found myself rolling my eyes really hard because it was so unbelievable. And what she does to Blake in the pool scene with one of the twins was just sleezy, and after that I had no liking for her because the brothers got the heat and anger, but it was all poor Jaxi. In ANY normal circumstance, I would have thought Blake and the brothers would have told her to f*** off because family is more important.

Has: This is where the book faltered for me, I really didn’t like the fact she flirted his brothers and especially since she was previously romantically involved his younger brother Travis, and yet she really was in love with Blake. I really disliked that scene when they were playing pool and I agree, I don’t think it would have been realistic that brothers wouldn’t have felt more strongly or have a real wedge between them. I just found Jaxi immature and I wished she just laid out her feelings for Blake in a better way to show him she was serious about him instead of trying to get a reaction by flirting with his brothers.

Favorite Scene

E: I actually have to explain this one a bit.  SPOILER Towards the beginning of the book Jaxi and Blake have a rather intimate encounter Blake is sure that Jaxi thinks she was involved with one of his brothers.  Neither person ever mentioned what happened so years later when Blake decided to confess to Jaxi she has her own confession to make.  /SPOILER

MinnChica: My favorite scene was when Black told Jaxi that they wouldn’t be continuing with their sexual relationship. When he told her that he wanted to court her, and date her. I loved that he really seemed to want so much more than just the sexual side of things. It was obvious that he was in love with her, and the fact that he wanted to show her in more ways than sex really resonated with me.

Lou: Unfortunately, I don’t have any favourite scenes in this book. I thought the premise was great and I was excited about the family of brothers, but the way it turned out really disappointed me.

Has: I liked the bonus chapter at the end, which I found pretty cute and funny and I wished this was the real prologue of the story but it was a great scene between Jax and Blake and his brothers as kids.

Dislike about book

E: I didn’t like how Jaxi used, even with their consent, some of Blake’s brothers in her pursuit of Blake.  I think there is too much potential of internal family jealousy.  I do like how Ms Arend addressed that and showed that there was a new tension in the family due to some of Jaxi’s interactions.  I think Ms Arend’s skill in ensuring that everything wasn’t smooth sailing between the brothers mitigated my dislike of that portion of Jaxi’s behavior.

MinnChica: I agree with E, I was NOT a fan of Jaxi using Blake’s brothers to make him jealous and force him to accept her. Like I said, it seemed childish and petty, especially since Jaxi was totally aware of how crazy it would drive Blake.

Lou: Ok, where do I start. First off, I found there wasn’t hardly any emotional connection between Blake and Jaxi. It seemed to be all lust and not a lot more. Secondly, Jaxi getting it on in public with one of the twins to get at Blake was just childish, sleezy and made me go WTF. She did it in front of Blake, knowing how much he wanted her. It was really messed up because Blake never got super angry. He never really seemed bothered about it which I thought was incredulous and not realistic. Jaxi ends up hurting the brothers: Travis when they were dating, and then one of the twins. And yes, most of the Cole brothers have had encounters with Jaxi from mild to quite heavy dealings. And two of brothers end up getting hurt, and Jaxi doesn’t take any blame in part of it. All this book seemed to be about was lust, hooking up and a unhealthy relationship between the brothers and Jaxi.

Has: I think everyone summed up what I feel about the jealousy thing, and it was definitely not something I liked or agreed with. I also wished there was emotional element between Jax and Blake, instead of the sexual attraction. I agree there wasn’t much of that in the beginning of the book although I think in the latter half it started to show hints but it was mostly sexual.

Misc. Thoughts

E: I own and enjoyed the original published version of ROCKY MOUNTAIN HEAT so when I found out it was being released I was pretty happy.  When I found out that it had been revised and lengthened I was hopeful that I would still have the same level of enjoyment out of reading the new version.  I am pleased to say that I certainly enjoyed reading this version and I think she did a wonderful job with the revisions.  The original feeling of the story is still present I just got more.  I give ROCKY MOUNTAIN HEAT a B+

MinnChica: While I didn’t ever read the original stories, I am SO glad that Arend is writing this cowboy series, and will continue on with writing more. I think she has set up wonderful characters, an exciting series and a great sense of family values with these guys. I’m really excited to read more and more. Viv – if you are reading this… .TYPE FASTER! 🙂 I give Rocky Mountain Heat a B

Lou: The book for me started out with a great premise, but turned into a story that he me going WTF, rolling my eyes and then just disbelief. I thought that how one woman seemed to be causing problems for a family of brothers and they all seemed to let Jaxi off the hook really bothered me. Despite the great premise, for how the story played out with the heroine and the brothers, I give Rocky Mountain Heat a D.

Has: I have very mixed feelings with this book, I loved the family dynamics and the relationship that the brothers have with each other, and although the romance was hawt – there wasn’t much of an emotional connection between Blake and Jaxi. I also didn’t like the how Jaxi used jealousy as a catalyst to get Blake to face up to his feelings for her and that. I give Rocky Mountain Heat a C-


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