Double The Romance Review: To Love and To Cherish & Forever and Always

Posted December 27, 2015 by Loverofromance in Book Reviews, Double The Romance Reviews / 7 Comments

Double The Romance Review: To Love and To Cherish & Forever and Always

Double The Romance Review: To Love and To Cherish & Forever and AlwaysTo Love and to Cherish by Leigh Greenwood
Also in this series: To Have and to Hold
Series: Cactus Creek Cowboys #2
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on November 4th 2014
Genres: Historical Romance
Narrator: Devon Sorvari
Length: 9 Hours and 53 Mins
Pages: 384
Format: Audiobook
Source: Hoopla Digital
ISBN: 1402284497
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One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
three-flames

After her husband's death, widow Laurie Spencer is left with nothing but the money she finds in the saddlebags of a dead soldier. Determined to be independent, she invests it in a ranch with Jared Smith, but when she doesn't have enough for a full partnership, she reluctantly throws herself in as part of the deal.
Playing housekeeper means plenty of time in close quarters with the sexy cowboy. Soon, they're in each other's arms, but personal demons keep Jared from admitting he's falling in love. When he finally sees what was right in front of him, it's going to take more than a lasso to get her back into his arms where she belongs.

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My Review

To Love and To Cherish is the second book and this story features Laurie Spencer and Jared Smith. Laurie Spencer is another of the three female cousins that were introduced to us in the first book. Laurie has just become a widow, her husband having passed away from a heart attack. Laurie is a beautiful woman, but her husband was very controlling in every aspect. He was insanely jealous, and forced her to wear unattractive clothing and she was always by his side, since he didn’t want her to attract male attention. Laurie is shocked to learn that she didn’t inherit everything so that she could be financially secure. He left it to his brother to dish out to her when he felt she needed it. The last thing Laurie wants is to be controlled and have no freedom once more. But she has money, lots of it….money only she knows about. So she makes a pact with handsome rancher, Jared Smith. She will give him her money so he can purchase his cattle if he will let her be his partner in the ranch and so she goes to cook and clean for his crew while learning the ropes of the ranch. Jared will have to be forced to choose over Laurie and the love he has for her or making sure his brother and his men get the money that is owed them.

To Love and To Cherish is a spectacular story that I couldn’t get enough of. I was able to listen to this one, since it was available through Hoopla (my library’s audiobook system). It was great to see a continuation of the first book….the people of the wagon train have settled in Arizona, built a nice town and are prospering. It was great fun to see characters from the first book in this story. I grew to really like Laurie. She has great strength and character, bold and goes after what she wants. She isn’t about to bow down to another man and stands on her own which was quite amusing to watch at times. The romance between Jared and Laurie is full of great chemistry from the beginning. It was a different experience seeing them act on their desire for each other pretty early in the book. We see how their emotional bond is built and gets put to the test. This was quite a wonderful story to read, and I couldn’t get enough of it. I loved seeing the love story take place on a ranch, and seeing the way the ranch hands are all like a family and they take to Laurie instantly. A  great spin of a romance, and a western that I would recommend to anyone that loves a great historical love story!! The ending just about made me tear up like crazy….we see some great emotional bonds that get formed and not just between our main couple….It will knock your socks off.

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Double The Romance Review: To Love and To Cherish & Forever and AlwaysForever and Always by Leigh Greenwood
Also in this series: To Have and to Hold
Series: Cactus Creek Cowboys #3
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on November 3rd 2015
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
ISBN: 1402284527
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One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
three-flames

He Knows She Can Never Be His…
Logan Holstock, oldest of three brothers orphaned on the Santa Fe Trail, has always been content knowing his brothers were alive and happy somewhere in the vast and brutal West - until he learns he may be dying. Certain he has little time left, Logan sets out to find them and end his days near a family he's never known… and stumbles across a strong yet vulnerable widow who makes him yearn forwhat can never be his.
Logan knows he shouldn't love Sibyl Spencer - he couldn't bear leaving her a widow all over again. But as he finds himself drawn deeper into the lives of this small Western town, he can't escape the longing to find peace in her arms. When he discovers that his death sentence is anything but, Logan swears he will do whatever it takes to prove himself to the woman he loves… and show he believes their love is worth fighting for.

My Review

Forever and Always is the third and most latest release….I am not sure if this is just a trilogy or if there will be more books. You never know with Leigh Greenwood. Now Forever and Always is probably my favorite book of the series…which is saying quite a bit since I couldn’t put down the previous two books. In this story we have Logan Holstock and Libby Spencer. Logan is the last of the three brothers and he has come out west to find them. Logan is dying from what his doctor tells him, and he knows he will be gone soon and must find his brothers before then. Libby Spencer, has recently become widowed when her husband was shot in his bank while a robbery was taking place. Logan saved Libby’s life. Libby takes in Logan when he become too sick, but there is something suspicious about his illness. Libby and her daughter instantly take to Logan, Libby has never known affection or care until she meets Logan. Libby will fight for him no matter the stakes that are involved.

This was quite a beautiful story and I honestly couldn’t get enough of seeing the last of the cousin and the brother get together. This had quite a mystery tone to the story as well. We see the evil workings of his ex fiancee who is only after his money and has been working to poison him, but Logan has no clue. We see her manipulations and how far they go. It was quite a unique experience to see how this aspect of the story balanced out so well with the other workings of the story. I loved seeing this and the way it came together in the end. The bond that forms between the three brothers that were seperated when they were just children, and are now reunited and having found love for themselves. I honestly wanted more of these three couples….so enchanting to see their families and their connection to each other and the way that they fight and banter for and with each other. It makes me want to read more of this author. I would highly recommend this trilogy and the audio narrative was done excellent!!


About Leigh Greenwood

Okay, let's get the hard stuff out of the way right up front. Leigh is a man! I know men aren't supposed to write romance, but I do and I don't intend to quit. It's fun.

If you're still mad, you can blame it on my wife. I wouldn't have known what romance was if, after I got married in 1972, romances hadn't started collecting all over the house. They were everywhere I looked, in the den, on the kitchen table, in the living room, stacked along one whole wall in the bedroom, even in the bathroom. When my wife wasn't cooking or taking care of the children, she was reading a romance. I admit I was a little supercilious about her choice of reading material. After all, I was reading Dickens, Hemingway, Austen, the classics! I started calling them her "sin, lust, and passion" books. I said it so often my daughter started calling them Mommy's "celeste" passion books. I thought it was funny. My wife didn't. One day, after what I’m certain was a typically condescending remark (you have to understand I'd never read a romance, just looked at the covers and made a snap judgment), she threw a book at me and told me to read it or shut up.

Being an obedient husband (my wife's expletive deleted!), I read the book. It was Georgette Heyer's These Old Shades. I loved it. To this day it's one of my favorite books. Being thoroughly hooked, I searched new and used bookstores until I'd collected every book Georgette Heyer ever wrote. After reading them all several times, I asked my wife to suggest some other books. Since I have a minor in history, she started me on a diet of the icons of early historical romance, Kathleen Woodiwiss, Rosemary Rogers, Jennifer Blake, Bertrice Small, and Johanna Lindsey. By now I was completely addicted.

Somewhere along the line, I read that women could make decent money (more than I could as a music teacher) writing historicals, so I tried to get my wife to write one. She told me she couldn't write, that I ought to write one. I said I couldn't think of a plot. This went back and forth for some time until I said if she'd give me a plot, I'd write a book. She said, "I've lost everything." It wasn't a plot, but it must have been enough. I sat down and started writing. 889 pages later, I had finished my first romance. A badly overwritten romance, but a book nonetheless.

I didn't know much about writing, and nothing at all about the romance market, so I had to write two more books and join Romance Writers of America before I knew enough to sell my first book. Wyoming Wildfire was published by Zebra in 1987. Since then I’ve written 45 more books and four novellas.

Unfortunately, after thirty-six years of marriage, my wife and I divorced. Even though it was amicable, it has been a difficult adjustment. House-hunting and moving from a home I’d occupied for twenty-seven years was no fun, but that’s behind me. My ex-wife is an excellent cook so I gave up cooking once we were married. Now I find that not only do I enjoy it, I’m good at it. In fact, I find myself standing over a simmering sauce or making soup to freeze when I should be writing. I’ve also come to a greater appreciation of what it takes to prepare tasty and interesting meals day after day, but you’re not likely to see any of that in my books. I haven’t written much about cooking since I got letters from readers after Wyoming Wildfire came out complaining that the heroine spent too much time in the kitchen.

I recently celebrated my 70th birthday so I call writing my mid-life crisis career. I have a BA in Voice and an MA in Musicology from the University of North Carolina. I taught music in schools and/or was an organist/choir director in churches for thirty-two years before retiring to write full time. I have three grown children (notice I didn't say mature or responsible!) who are momentarily occupying distant parts of these United States. I enjoy gardening and singing in both church and community choirs. I have just welcomed a beautiful grandson, and a granddaughter is on the way. Now if I can just live long enough to tell them stories about their parents.

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  • I really enjoyed Logan’s story and it was my first chance with the author and the series. I’m with you. I want more of those brothers together and the new families they have. 🙂

  • I’m so glad you enjoyed these. I’m not huge into westerns. But I should give them a try.

  • I’ve never read a Leigh Greenwood book though I keep meaning to try him out. I love westerns so I’m sure I’d enjoy them. I’m especially intrigued by Forever and Always.

  • I could totally go for some cowboy yumminess right now.

  • Aurian

    Cowboys! I would like to read these, but I have to admit, the authors biography is even more interesting. Adding him to my wishlist.

    • Loverofromance

      oh I adore those cowboys!!! And yes you definitely need to try him out. He writes romances so well and I always admire male romance authors.

  • Dang dang dang. Definitely going to have to try him out in 2016. Love your new colored category dots 😀