Who’s afraid of the big, bad cowboy? 

After one too many heartbreaks, Travis Blake hung up his cowboy hat and put Big Verde, Texas, behind him. But when he gets the call that his young nephew needs him, he knows he has to return home. His plan is to sell the family ranch and hightail it back to Austin, but there’s a small problem: the one person who stands in his way is the one person he can’t resist.

Maggie is pretty sure she hates Travis Blake. He’s irritating, he’s destroying her business, and . . . and he’s just so frickin’ attractive. But when they’re forced to work together, Maggie discovers that the Most Annoying Man in the World is more than he seems. He’s sweet with his nephew, he helps out in the community, and he makes her heart flutter. Maggie doesn’t want to risk everything on a man who wants to leave, but what if she can convince this wayward cowboy to stay?

Titles in the Once Upon A Time In Texas series include:  Big Bad Cowboy

Title:  Big Bad Cowboy
Series:  Once Upon A Time In Texas #1
Author:  Carly Bloom
Genre:  Modern Western Romance
Published:  October 30, 2018
Publisher:  Grand Central Publishing – Forever
My Rating:  4.5 stars

Mention any connection to a classic fairy tale retelling and you had me at “Once upon a time…” – Big Bad Cowboy, the first in the Once Upon A Time In Texas series certainly hit all the right spots for me when I’m in the mood for a more… adult fairy tale. (and yes, I do plan to re-read this one)

Told with a combination of  humor and sexy talk, this is a couple that I adored from the start, even if they had a rougher beginning.  Maggie is building a landscaping business but suddenly the jobs that she should be getting are going somewhere else.  No one comes into town and steals her business, so Maggie and Travis start off as adversaries.  Travis vowed never to return home but life and circumstances often don’t listen to our sworn vows.  He has a nephew to raise, a ranch to salvage and being just out of the  Army he’ll take any odd job he can… including landscaping.  The intention was never to step on the toes of other established businesses but a man had to make a living in order to save the family ranch.

The chance to escape at a masked Halloween ball gives Maggie and Travis the freedom to… hmm… interact without knowing that they’re dancing with the enemy.  It doesn’t take Travis long to know who he’s holding but he also knows Maggie’s opinion of him.  Time for a little challenge via text messages of the secy kind.  When they’re forced to actually work together on a job the sparks fly, but the emotions start to build.   Watching this couple come together forever was a sheer joy, and a lot of chuckles.

Big Bad Wolf is full of characters who will win your heart, have you laughing out loud, and maybe getting a bit annoyed or frustrated as well.  Loved the small town of Big Verde, Texas where everyone might know your business, but they’ll also be the first to jump in to help when needed… or sometimes when not asked either.  I am really looking forward to some of those residents getting their own tale told one day soon.  Frankly, I  had a blast with Big Bad Wolf and I would recommend it to any reader who loves a great story, fun characters, a touch of steam and  lot of heart.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*

Available in paperback and for the Kindle