Double Wow
by Shellie Green-Baker

"He knew he was borrowing trouble, but they would need each other’s body heat to stay warm, so he lay down next to her."

Men are suckers for blondes in this tale of a tomboy turned head-turner and the two men who vie for her affections. A light-hearted entry in the romance genre, this love story builds upon favorite tropes, including the girl who blossoms overnight into womanhood, the kidnapping seducer, the family friend who becomes a lover, and that popular old standby—the love triangle.

In a fertile family of multiples with pairs of twins to spare, Katrina has long been one of the boys, tussling and pranking her way through days on her family’s Cattle Ranch and adjusting to life after her father’s death. When she is kidnapped by a Native American who wants to seduce and marry her, her rescue by Chad, the family's ranch foreman, awakens a mutual attraction and necessitates decisions and adjustments to their respective identities within the family and community.

The love and lust in this story are powered predominantly by Katrina’s petite and evidently irresistible form, which drives otherwise competent men to fall atop each other in their efforts to win her favor. Interestingly, while Katrina is a strong, brave, and competent adult when facing off with her kidnapper, she demonstrates a mushier, weaker personality when paired with her beloved Chad. So stark is the contrast between her tough and timid sides that it is all too easy to root for the criminal, Silver Ghost, as Katrina’s final choice of spouse. He may take women against their will, but the woman he awakens in Katrina is far more independent, intelligent, and all-around appealing than the one who arrives meekly back home. Ultimately, however, the heart wants what it wants, and Katrina’s choices set the tone for generations to come—which covers a lot of territory in a family so prone to multiple births and large broods.

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