Soaking into a new #HarlequinHeartwarming series | “The Texas SEAL’s Surprise” (Three Springs, Texas, Book One) by Cari Lynn Webb

Posted Friday, 3 September, 2021 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

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Acquired Book By: I’ve been hosting for Prism Book Tours since September of 2017 – having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. As I enquired about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. Oft-times you’ll find Prism Book Tours alighting on my blog through the series of guest features and spotlights with notes I’ll be hosting on behalf of their authors when I’m not showcasing book reviews on behalf of Harlequin Heartwarming which has become my second favourite imprint of Harlequin next to my beloved #LoveINSPIRED Suspense. I am also keenly happy PRISM hosts a variety of Indie Authors and INSPY Fiction novelists.

I received a complimentary copy of “The Texas SEAL’s Surprise” direct from the author Cari Lynn Webb in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I love reading stories by Ms Webb:

The concept of friendship & family as outlined by Ms Webb through her author’s note & dedication ahead of Three Makes A Family follow my own thoughts on those subjects as well. Without family, I have always felt I would be as unmoored as I would be if I were without faith as combined I feel anchoured and supported. Family truly is everything in our lives and our friends – especially the ones who stay with us through the changing tides of our lives are the ones who matter most in the end. We are fortunate if we can hang onto them whilst life turns adverse and uncertain and we can fondly celebrate them when life has more rainbows & sunshine than torrents of lightning and storms!

Webb has a brilliant way of alighting into a character’s life so completely and so tethered close to their emotional state of mind, you never feel you’re meeting her characters for the first time! As you drew a breath closer to Molly and Drew, you see who they are simply through their actions and their thoughts – especially how they have a propensity for caring for others and wanting to right the wrongs they hope they can influence towards positive change. It is such a strong opening set of chapters that you immediately feel interconnected into the plot and have a strong sense about the kind of story which will continue to unfold for you to savour reading.

Which is why I love her stories within this series – as each of the stories is a new reflection of hope, friendship and family; plus the fortitude to see how characters can effectively change their own lives or have their lives changed by others. I love stories which are both empowering and heartwarming to read – they give us all a lovely respite from our everyday hectic lives and a restoration of a heartful boost of encouragement to realise that no matter what hope is lingering right round the corner.

-quoted from a preview of Three Makes Family review

I’ve enjoyed reading her City by the Bay stories and of course, I love reading the Blackwell Sisters sequel series to the Blackwell Brothers. You’ll find all the reviews for the Blackwell Brothers series on my blog – however, I’m still making my way through the Blackwell Sisters series. It has been a bit of a hard-won year for me reading wise and as I ease out of a difficult Summer, I’m hopeful Autumn and Winter will prove as comforting as they usually are with kinder weather patterns, more hours to read and a lovely return to sharing my readerly life on a more regular basis on Jorie Loves A Story.

I have a lot of joy in finding writers who love to celebrate and champion family and friendships – it is the backbone of why I love reading relationship-based romances, as you get to tuck close to the characters, peer into their personal lives and take up residence in their shoes for the hours you’re reading their stories.

I find Ms Webb’s stories to be a delightful respite from the storms of life – which is why I was thrilled when I found out she had a new series on the horizon this year. Western Romances are a cosy comfort read for me and I couldn’t wait to settle into this lovely and find what Three Springs Texas would give me as a reader. May this series have a lot of installments like her previous ones which will give us all a lot of wicked good hours of reading!!

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In case you missed it, during my 8th Blogoversary this March,
I re-celebrated why I love reading Harlequin Heartwarming stories as I had during my 6th!

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Soaking into a new #HarlequinHeartwarming series | “The Texas SEAL’s Surprise” (Three Springs, Texas, Book One) by Cari Lynn WebbThe Texas SEAL's Surprise
Subtitle: Three Springs Texas
by Cari Lynn Webb
Source: Author via Prism Book Tours

New town...

New set of problems

Suddenly single—and pregnant—Abby James hopes Three Springs, Texas, will give her the fresh start she craves. But five minutes in and she’s already clashed with a former Navy SEAL on horseback. Wes Tanner might be devastatingly handsome, but Abby has no time for romance. Especially with a man intent on leaving town. Abby wants to plant some roots…and falling for the tempting Texan could upend all her plans!

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Western Fiction, Ranches & Cowboys, Western Romance, Contemporary Romance

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1335426406

Also by this author: The Rancher's Rescue, Single Dad to the Rescue, In Love by Christmas, Her Surprise Engagement, Three Makes A Family, Trusting the Rancher with Christmas

Published by Harlequin Heartwarming

on 24th August, 2021

Format: Larger Print (Mass Market Paperback)

Pages: 384

Published by: Harlequin Heartwarming (@HarlequinBooks) | imprint of Harlequin

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Three Springs, Texas series:

The Texas SEAL’s Surprise (Book One) : Abby & Wes’s story

Trusting the Rancher with Christmas (Book Two) : Evan & Paige’s story
forthcoming release October, 2021

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Converse via: #Contemporary #Romance or #WesternRomance

+ #Harlequin OR #HarlequinHeartwarming & #ThreeSpringsTexas

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About Cari Lynn Webb

Cari Lynn Webb

Cari Lynn Webb lives in South Carolina with her husband, daughters and assorted four-legged family members. She's been blessed to see the power of true love in her grandparent's 70 year marriage and her parent's marriage of over 50 years. She knows love isn't always sweet and perfect, it can be challenging, complicated and risky. But she believes happily-ever-afters are worth fighting for. She loves to connect with readers. Visit her at her website.

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my review of the texas seal’s surprise:

When it comes to long distance travelling – the last thing in the world you want is complications. I felt the grief steaming off of Abby as soon as she entered the scene. Car issues and a wench in the wheel on your arrival time and destination isn’t something you can plan for when your taking a cross-country journey. However, it was wicked brilliant finding Wes and his horse Dan on that road because it felt like a cheeky way of alighting us into Abby’s newfound world. She craved for change (who can’t relate to that?) and she wanted dearly to have this ‘new’ start to stick – to be worth the aggravation and the hard-won road trip which landed her in Three Springs. Anyone whose had to hit the road for whichever circumstances hoping to find a better tomorrow on arrival will relate to what she was feeling when she first met Wes.

I felt a bit of the meddling spirit of Big E (from the Blackwell Brothers & Sisters series) in the form of Boone – a kind-hearted cowboy who had a happy spirit about him and a twinkling personality wherein he liked to align himself properly into people’s lives and perhaps nudge them into one direction or another if he felt it suited. He was an immediate favourite character for me, as he was a bit unassuming and had a happier disposition about him than Wes. Wes on the other hand was a bit hardened by life itself and was more than a bit jaded. He had his routines and his method of living but he didn’t want to complicate it nor did he want to enliven it either with a few new complications and for Wes, a complication was as simple as making small talk with a newcomer to towne! Laughs.

Three Springs, Texas likes to let you find out about the towne as you progress through the story, as it is the backdrop of the series but it is also one of those kinds of sleepier townes where it takes a bit to see the sights and understand the rhythm of how the community functions. On the surface, you might blink and miss the towne itself but it has more to it than what can be perceived. Tess, the barely knows her cousin relation of Abby is a clever character in her own right. Relocated to a towne on a whim and hope of starting over with their grandfather’s store and without knowing how it might all turn out in the end. That’s the kind of second chance you want to bet on and see come to fruition because of the courage it takes to re-write your own destiny. I was hoping a bit of that spunk and spark might inspire Abby a bit too. Even if she doesn’t think Tess is as strong as Tess actually is and that of course was an observation which made me smirk. People sometimes misconstrue others and misunderstand their own strength.

The General store Tess inherited from their grandparents is a bit of a work-in-progress – whereas what was once a thriving store front is now a bit of a build yourself a new inventory kind of store! It has the bare bones of a thriving business but the heart and substance it once held in its shelves is long since gone. I thought it was quite clever Tess was taking custom orders, which seemed to be more of the antique and hard to source variety than the kinds of items you’d think ranchers might want to seek out to purchase on the regular. I had a feeling the General store might have a new identity dawning for itself. Of course, for two women trying to make amends for their insurrected pasts and try to find new ground in this new community in which to reset their lives, I felt a project like this one might be the best medicine they could each mutually have found.

The more Abby and Wes were placed onto each others’ paths, the more you could see how both of them ached for more connection. Not necessarily from each other, though that is the underthread of interest throughout the story, but just from someone who would understand them. They’re both a bit untethered at the beginning, as their both seeking elsewhere to find their roots. They want to find a way to recharge their lives, which is why Abby selected Three Springs as a potential root making option for herself as Tess was already anchoured here. For Wes, it was further complicated by what had previously happened before his arrival in Three Springs; both on a personal and professional front. For him, life couldn’t rebegin until he was certain he had a foundation on which to build. For Abby, she was a bit more daring and decided to take her chances as she found them rather than wait for a better moment to begin. They both had their strengths and they both had their own share of reservations, which were understandable given the circumstances.

I admit, the homemade bagels (goodness, if I could learn to bake some of those!) and other bakery delights wiggled the itch for me to get back into baking! I made such wonderful progresses last year, as I finally learnt how to make a proper lemon scone and a series of different batches of biscuits, including one of my top favourites which were biscuits with pimento cheese mixed inside them. Their light, fluffy and they still steam a bit as you pull them apart after their popped out of the oven! Quite divine! As much as the aromas of that basket Ilene gave to Abby! #beyondyum (curious if there is a recipe in the Webb family for those bagels!?)

Yet, when Abby had her doctor’s appointment and Wes had to take her to it, I appreciated the charm of the scene wherein Abby thought Wes would be uncomfortable in that office whereas in his mind, his life as a Navy SEAL far outshined any discomfort he could have in civilian life due to the extreme situations SEALs had to go through in the field. And, of course, he had a point but he didn’t confide that to Abby. Wes was a hard nut to crack and a harder conversationalist as he liked to keep everything to himself. His thoughts, his fears, his concerns – just about everything that makes him a person was all lost and bottled inside him. He didn’t like sharing and getting him to open up about himself was proving a hard road to walk for Abby. I’d almost want to tell her that those kinds of men rarely change as their spots can get a bit worse the older they become as sometimes that kind of quiet reserve can endeavour longer periods of silence. I hoped for their sake Wes would shake himself out of that solitude attitude and wish to rejoin the living whilst finding a way to engage directly with others, but most especially with Abby.

Fireside stories are wonderful ways to hear history and also a wonderful way to connect to others. I loved Webb for including the meet-up with the community members we had met in the story, whilst giving us a bit of a back-history glimpse into the surrounding area. The Herring gang and the residents of Hollow Brook added lovely dimension to the story. Plus, it was interesting peering into everyone’s private thoughts and/or reactions, especially in regards to Wes. He was always slowly brooding over something or another, and in this aspect, it was his brother he couldn’t shake out of his head or his soul for that matter. I did question if he could ever forgive his brother’s faults and the pain he had caused Wes. It wasn’t an easy solution by far but the further Wes was from healing the more painful the memories were evoking their anguish on his heart.

What truly anchours you into this story though is the unconditional love this community has for each other – it is even evident in the letter by Abby’s grandmother, which she wrote to Abby to encourage her on her new path towards finding out if Three Springs is the right fit for her as it had been for her grandparents. Sometimes life leads you in different places than your expecting to find yourself but those places are the right place to find your life. This is why I loved seeing this story develop and endeavour to paint the larger portrait of the towne of Three Springs. There are so many lovely characters here to draw your eye towards them and to have a piece of your heart left behind in a community who truly feels its more one extended family than a community of neighbours. These people care about each other, about welcoming in new visitors and residents alike and in finding common ground in which to build a solid future. All of us would be blessed to find the same in our world, too.

on the western & romantic styling of ms webb:

Webb definitely understands road travel – the little details she etched into the background of the scene with Abby and Wes reflect what it is like going mile after mile looking hopeful towards your final destination. You put a lot of weight on the journey of course, but once you have the destination in sight, those miles go quite a bit faster off the odometer! Plus, I could relate to losing a/c in the car in sweltering hot conditions and wondering just how much more road you have to travel before you can get some air conditioned relief! Heat and humidity are not a joke and the fastest way to get heat exhaustion is to have the outside and inside temperatures aligned in a car!

I loved the method of how Webb introduced the horse rehab and adoption ranch run by Wes and Boone – at least, that is what I’m referring it as myself. They (er, mostly Boone!) likes to find horses who have nowhere else to live and bring them to their ranch. Once there, they nurse them back to health (if needed, as most are not in the best of straits) and find new homes for them to lead better lives. It is a wonderful bout of goodwill and positive energy – especially knowing every horse deserves to have kindness, respect and love in their lives. I think the people who rescue the horses also get a bit of healing in themselves as one kindness overflows into another. Boone, of course, is the character you know has a lot up his sleeves and always has a full scope of what he wants to do. I think Wes is the kind of character who’d rather have consistency and routine without any surprises at all and of course, that is how Webb created the best lead-in for the drama percolating in the background of this story!

I was truly grateful to have the chance to read this first story of Ms Webb’s new series. She had wonderful layers to the novel, tucking us closer to the mindset and internal worlds of her characters – whilst she allowed them the space they needed to work through their emotional strife and the past hurts which sought to destroy their chances for a better tomorrow. In other words, there is plenty of life happening on these pages and each challenge had its own set of resolutions. My favourite though was the message from Abby’s grandmother – about life, about love and about what makes the years of your life worth living. It was solid advice but it held such a lot of sage truths within it as well. It was these kinds of inclusions and discoveries which made Three Springs a lovely respite for me as a reader whose been a bit weathered by her own storms in life this Summer.

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On a personal note, I am loving the new bookmark Ms Webb included with the book – as I love the design of it – floral and her series are listed on the back! It was a delightful companion whilst I read this novel and it will be used quite regularly as I read other stories. It is very kind whenever an author can tuck in a bookmark as being an avid reader, I’m always a bit at a loss where I put my bookmarks as their most oft found in books currently being read or stories I loved reading I might want to revisit a passage of, etc. The bookmark thereby was a wicked surprise and one I treasured!

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This blog tour is courtesy of: Prism Book Tours

Prism Book Tours

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The Texas SEAL's Surprise tour banner provided by Prism Book Tours and is used with permission.

By clicking this banner you can find out about the giveaway associated with the tour;
my particular tour stop doesn’t host the giveaway as I’m a review stop, however,
you’ll find many other bloggers who are hosting the information!

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I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary!
Especially if you read the book or were thinking you might be inclined to read it.
I appreciate hearing different points of view especially amongst
readers who gravitate towards the same stories to read.
Bookish conversations are always welcome!
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This review is cross-posted to LibraryThing.

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{SOURCES: Cover art of “The Texas SEAL’s Surprise”, the author photo of Cari Lynn Webb and her biography; and the Prism Book Tours badges were all provided by Prism Book Tours and used with permission. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets embedded by codes provided by Twitter. LibraryThing banner provided by and used with permission. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Book Review banner and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2021.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Friday, 3 September, 2021 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Contemporary Romance, Contemporary Western Fiction, Cowboys & Ranches, Farm and Ranching on the Frontier, Indie Author, Prism Book Tours, Romance Fiction, Western Fiction

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