Also in this series: The Cowboy, Sinful
Series: Bitter Creek #14
Published by Dell on December 29th 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
HER SHAMEFUL PAST MAKES HER AN OUTCAST— UNTIL A LONE WOLF TAKES HER INTO HIS HOME. Scorned, pregnant, and facing a life without promise, Pippa Grayhawk is stunned when her father announces that they’re leaving their home in Australia to take over his estranged father’s sprawling Wyoming ranch. Drawn into bitter family rivalries and feeling like an interloper in her new home, Pippa rides out into the wilderness and meets an intriguing stranger and his pet wolf. The wolf doesn’t scare her, but she’s very much afraid to trust another man with her heart. Devon Flynn knows all about going it alone. He lives in an isolated cabin, away from his domineering father and the scandal surrounding his family. Devon’s attraction to Pippa is intoxicating and undeniable, but when he tries to get close, she’s as wary as his once-wild wolf. Devon is willing to defy his father, and hers, to claim Pippa as his own, but winning this wounded, wonderful woman’s love might be the greatest battle of all.
Pippa Greyhawk, thought that she was in love with a fellow ranchhand that worked with her father. But then she learns that she is pregnant, and that Tim is actually married. She is burned from the scandal of it all, and her father takes her and her brother from their home in Australia, back to the states. In some ways, Pippa isn’t sure that America is any better for her. She is despised by her father’s sisters, but there is one man that treats her more humanely than anyone else does…Devon Flynn. Devon runs a horse ranch, and his land is right next to the Greyhawks. But then he meets Pippa on the mountain, and they start becoming good friends. Pippa moves in with him for a short time, when things at home get too intense for her. Soon their fragile friendship turns into something more. But both Devon and Pippa are keeping secrets from each other. Secrets that could tear apart what they have built together.
Devon Flynn, is the youngest of the Flynn boys. Devon always felt that he was blamed for his mothers death and that there has always been a hidden secret about her but has never been able to discover the real truth. Devon is intelligent and has a talent for horses. Devon has been honest about his intentions toward Pippa. Devon is upfront and full of integrity. What I liked about his character is his stubborn tenacity when it comes to Pippa. She is stubborn about taking their relationship to the next level, but Devon is as driven as a bull in mating season. He knows that Pippa is the real thing, and refuses to give her up. I really liked his character, because Devon is one of those characters that takes everything in stride and fights for what he wants.
Pippa Greyhawk is her fathers daughter in many ways but in other ways I feel like she could have had a tougher backbone. She is 20 years old, but she doesn’t stand up for herself as much as I thought she was able at times. Most especially when her aunts are pretty mean to her. But Pippa in other moments, I grew to really like. She is more reserved and keeps to herself, but she also is courageous in moments that matter. My big issue with her was her denial when it came to her relationship with Devon. She is always pushing him away, but I honestly couldn’t understand her persistence in keeping their relationship platonic when its obvious she wants more than that. So in some ways her character was contrary in ways that didn’t completely make sense. But I grew to like her in the end.
Plot and Story Line
Shameless is a story that I have been waiting for since I read Sinful. I love that Johnston has returned back to the rivalry. In Shameless we don’t see the family rival tension as much as we did in Sinful. Which I was kinda looking forward to, but Shameless has a softer tension to it. I felt that Joan Johnston handled the secret pregnancy pretty well. I never do like secrets like this, and even though I felt like Pippa kept the secret a bit too long, it did add certain conflict to the relationship that I felt was needed for these two. From the beginning, I was hooked on their romance. It starts out sweet and gentle and I love the flow of these two together. They have instant sparks, but the focus is building up the friendship first and then slowly the sexual chemistry builds between them. What I do admire about Joan Johnston is that she doesn’t place tons of sex into her romance and delivers a beautiful love story every time that I read her. That holds true for this one. Even though there are some moments that I had some issues–but in all honesty as a whole…this was a story that was utterly enjoyable and had its fun delicious moments.
The side characters int he story really added depth to the plot. What I find interesting was seeing a different side to Matt’s sisters (Matt is Pippa’s father). In Sinful, we see more of their side but in Shameless we see how difficult it is for Matt and his kids. They are treated like lepers, both of them Pippa and her younger brother who I believe is only seven at the time of this story. I really liked the brother. He was so adorable, and it was quite enchanting seeing Pippa’s relationship with him. You can tell they are very close, and she understands him in ways her father never will because he has been gone a lot in their lives running the family ranch in Australia. We also have a side romantic plot dealing with Matt and Pippa’s mother Jennie. There was a bit of a cliff hanger dealing with these two. I am hoping in the next book, we see more of their romance.
But as a whole, Shamless is a story that I loved and couldn’t get enough of. Way to go Joan Johnston….keep more books coming.
I adore this cover….so sweet and romantic. I love the pose here, sitting on the rock (which is very relevant to the story), and I love her dress. So classy.
Shameless is a vibrant and tender romance that kept me captivated from the beginning. Joan Johnston has added a wonderful addition to this Bitter Creek Series that will leave you breathless for more!!