ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY Cat Johnson
An Oklahoma Nights Romance
, Book 1
Kensington Brava
ISBN-13: 978-0-7582-8538-6
March 2013
Contemporary Romance

New York, New York; Stillwater, Oklahoma Present day

Rebecca Hart can't believe it when Dean Morris, Dean of Vassar College's English department, tells her she is being let go.  Becca is absolutely astounded; she thought maybe she was getting an Associate Professor position.  And then to round the day off perfectly, when she arrives home early she sees her boyfriend Jerry and a moving van in front.  Apparently Jerry was just going to leave and never even face her.  Here she was relying on him for marriage and maybe medical coverage until finding a new job, and now he just leaves, he and his thinning, premature receding hairline.  It's only her sister Emma who encourages her to look for a new job out of state.  But when she suggests OKLAHOMA, of all places, she knows Emma is crazy.  Why, there's not even art or culture in Oklahoma.  But, unknown to Becca, Emma fills out the online application, and a week later the dean of the English department calls her requesting an interview.  Emma will have to go and keep her company for her interview, but Emma is determined they will also go to a local rodeo for a little fun since tickets are only ten dollars.

Tucker Jenkins and Jace Mills immediately see two hot looking women enter the rodeo and set their sights on them.  They are both bull riders, and Tuck is definitely feeling the emptiness of the last year since his divorce.  With Jace encouraging him, they find the girls in the stands and invite them down on the floor by them to watch the rodeo close up.  Something clicks between Tuck and Becca, and Tuck is more than willing to spend the night with the hot blonde.  Before Becca's interview the next morning, they have spent some extremely satisfying hours in bed, but she walks away without getting his phone number or giving Tuck hers.  They'll probably never see each other again anyway. . .  But as luck would have it, Becca gets the job and meets Tuck again at a mixer to introduce her to the OSU faculty, and finds out he is an instructor with the Army ROTC program at the college.  Now the question is, do they act on their attraction or fight it all the way?

Becca and Tuck are like two magnets who take turns being wildly attracted to each other and then pushing each other away, each with memories of their own past and afraid to commit to a future together.  But when Tuck finds out Becca could lose her position because of a non-fraternization rule between employees, he makes the drastic decision to volunteer for six months in Afghanistan.  Tuck knows there is no way he could be in the same city with Becca and not see her, and he knows this position is very important to her future.  Becca immediately thinks Tuck is doing something drastic to get away from her, and all her old doubts about herself raise their ugly heads.

Cat Johnson has really come out a winner in ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY.  Told from Becca's and Tuck's points of view, both of them are interesting, funny, likeable people NOT looking for love.  Tuck is still hurting from his divorce, and Becca is still struggling with the fact that she lost her job and her boyfriend on the same day.  Hey, Jerry wasn't that great, well, maybe he wasn't even good, but at least she could say she had a boyfriend.  Determined to avoid love, Tuck tells himself a one-night-stand is good.  He's not as crazy as when he first got divorced, but Becca's something different than those buckle bunnies; she's a real lady.  Becca can't believe she left New York, home of all things decent and sophisticated, for Oklahoma, but a job has to be first on her priority list.

Secondary characters round out the story with likable and engaging friends.  First of all is Emma, Becca's sister, who is behind Becca all the way, encouraging her to break her mold and engage life fully.  Lieutenant Colonel Logan Hunt is head of the OSU ROTC program and Tuck's best friend since they were children, but also his superior.  Jace Mills is Tuck's fellow rodeo performer and always there for him, forcing Tuck to rejoin the dating world again after this divorce.

ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY is so much more fun than I thought it would be.  Combining things that are sure to appeal to everyone, we have rodeos, cowboys, soldiers, and hot, sensitive love.  Next in the Oklahoma Nights series will be TWO TIMES AS HOT (October 2013) featuring Emma and Logan Hunt.  It sounds just as delicious as ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY, and I can't wait for it to come out.  The story drew my interest and I thoroughly enjoyed every step getting to know and root for Tuck to come to his senses and accept Becca as the one and only perfect woman for him, and for Becca to take the plunge into a lifelong commitment.

Carolyn Crisher