Shane Marvell’s career as a rodeo rider is ending far too soon. He doesn’t have a plan B, so during his last season, he’s all in, determined to win as much prize money as possible–even if it means riding injured and taking more risks than he should. 

Ella Etxeberri has always played it safe, so when her life still takes a bad turn despite her caution, she wonders if if isn’t time to see what she’s been missing. While researching risk behaviors in rodeo riders, she meets Shane Marvell, a cowboy who merits additional study of the personal variety. 

Just as Ella is hitting the point to embrace risk, Shane is pulling back. He knows Ella’s all-in approach is born of curiosity and whim. He’s not what she wants forever, and perhaps Ella is one risk he can’t allow himself to take.

Titles in the 79th Copper Mountain Rodeo series include:   The Cowboy Meets His Match by Sarah Mayberry – The Bull Rider’s Return by Joan Kilby –  Cowboy Come Home by Sinclair Jayne – The Cowboy’s Last Rodeo by Jeannie Watt – The Rodeo Cowboy’s Baby by Heidi Rice

Title:  The Cowboy’s Last Rodeo
Series:  The 79th Copper Mountain Rodeo #4
Author:  Jeannie Watt
Genre:  Contemporary Romance, Modern Western Romance
Published:  September 11, 2018
Publisher:  Tule Publishing
My Rating:  4.5 stars

The Cowboy’s Last Rodeo gives us a rather unique look at a rodeo cowboy’s life as his career winds down, not necessarily by choice but by the wear, tear and abuse a body goes through while trying to stay on a bull or a bronc for those precious eight seconds… and the resulting injuries when the animal was truly the winner in the contest.  I liked Shane.  It’s that plain and simple, I liked this man.  He’s realistic with himself, he knows his time on the circuit is ending and that he has to make this his best winning season ever for these rides will fund a future for himself, and maybe one day for his family.  He knows what he doesn’t want, and he’s honest with himself in that some of his choices weren’t the wisest for the long haul.  His ex has really done a number on his mind, on his pride and in his view of himself.  It’s going to take a unique woman to show Shane that he is worth a lifetime commitment from a woman who can love him exactly as he is.

Ella is the non-risk taker in a family full of the biggest risk takers around.  At times, it’s almost as though she was a foundling discovered on their doorstep with no idea what to do with her… except maybe love her for those differences.  We’ve run into Ella before in this series, a quick glimpse of an interview where she asked some uncomfortable questions that got into a cowboy’s head right before a ride.  Now I might never have sat on the back of one mean-spirited , angry bull but even I know not to ask some questions right before someone risks their life on the back of that animal.  So, while Ella might not be seen as a true risk taker, she has the potential, even if she or her family doesn’t see it.  She’s trying to understand the mindset of risk-takers by interviewing the rodeo cowboys (and cowgirls).  What she will discover is a man worth some risks, a man wounded but still facing his reality in a way she has to admire even if she cannot fully understand.  I liked Ella… but I loved Shane and Ella together, they fit, become a whole unit… eventually.

The best possible gift one person can give to another is to love them, unconditionally, exactly as they are.  Ella and Shane are opposites in several ways, yet they each embrace who the other is without demanding they change for their comfort zones, but strengthen their love by accepting and celebrating those differences by committing to a love for a lifetime.  Because of that solid foundation they are free to take chances, make decisions that will change them knowing that their love is returned no matter what differences are seen by the rest of the world.  That’s romance, that’s the kind of love that is worth any risk imaginable… and that is what I saw in Ella and Shane.  Sure, there were bumps along the road, but the final destination was worth it.

If you’re looking for a story that will touch your heart, make you think and definitely allow you to feel an unconditional love… then you’ll want to pick up The Cowboy’s Last Rodeo.  I’d highly recommend this one, and the entire 79th Copper Mountain Rodeo series for Romance readers who enjoys the journey to that lifetime love.

*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 for the Kindle