102 Following

Liz Loves Books

I love to read and to talk about books. I review many of the books I read. I do not accept any author/publisher submissions for reviews. I do not read or review ARCs. I do not enter any giveaways or contests. I obtain the books I review by purchasing them at the same price they are offered to the general public at the time of purchase. My reviews are intended for the use of my fellow readers. They are not advertising or promotion. They are not beta reads or constructive criticism or editing or advice to the author. My only obligation to the author is to pay the price charged for the book at the time of purchase. My reviews are sometimes critical and I will not stop posting critical reviews just to spare delicate authors' feelings. I am happy to make new friends, but friend requests from authors or promoters who have few or no books (and/or friends) in common with me and write or promote categories I do not read (especially new adult) will be ignored. I used to read more self-published books. After recent meltdowns by self-published authors, I now only read self-published authors I've previously read or who have been recommended to me by fellow readers I trust. I also used to read young adult/new adult books but rarely do so now.

Deacon's Touch by Callie Croix

Deacon's Touch - Callie Croix

This is listed on GR as book 1 in the "Dume Ranch" series.  However both on Amazon and on the cover it is subtitled and presumably part of a series called "Cowboy Kink."  Remember this, please.  It is important.


As short erotic romances go, this is a pretty good book.  The plot is standard: stressed stockbroker gets roped (pun!) into a bridesmaids' weekend at a dude ranch where she meets an injured former pararescue special ops medic who is now bitterly toiling away at the family ranch and they ...  well, you know the story from there.  Sometimes this story has some actual plot and sometimes it is really just a PWP which is the case here.  They spend the first half of the book thinking about and imagining having sex with each other and the second half having sex with each other.  The sex is explicit and, in my opinion, well written.


The female lead is fairly generic but I expected that.  The characterization of the male lead was more important, especially in light of the "Cowboy Kink" subtitle/series name mentioned above.  I went into this little bit of smut expecting two things:  Cowboy and Kink.  I did get cowboy.  I got a lot of very sexy cowboy and I appreciate that.  I did not get kink, at least in sufficient quantities to justify the subtitle.  There was not even enough kink for this to qualify as sugarkink.  The characters think vaguely about possibly doing something kinky during the first half.  In the second half (which consists 98% of very explicit sex) there is part of one scene where there is some very light bondage and a little back door action with a toy.  And that is all the kink there is. I felt cheated of kink.


There is an HEA but this one story that would have worked better for me as a fling.  I really didn't connect with either character or care about them as a couple. There are also a couple of quick non smut scenes that led me to believe the author was attempting a romantic suspense series but honestly I don't care who let the cows get out or who did the other kind of mysterious thing.


This book has a handful of 4 and 5 star reviews on Amazon.  I thought it worked well and was competently written for a PWP.  But I also found it disappointing as both a romance and a kinky book.  I deducted half a star for a bridesmaids' weekend with almost no interaction between the heroine and her fellow bridesmaids or the bride.  Instead she very rudely holed up in the hero's cabin for 2 days having nonkinky sex.