Lainey Hughes is headed to Nome and she’s not happy about it. Brought in at the last minute to take photos of the Iditarod awards banquet, it’s much colder than where she’s just been in Africa and she’d rather be in Jersey, wrapped around her friend with benefits and a bottle of booze. A quick slip on an ice patch has Lainey falling not only on her butt, but right into the attentions of three-time Iditarod racer Scotch Fuller. In return, Scotch falls right into her thoughts, where Laney can’t seem to get rid of her.
Despite being a local favorite, forecasted to possibly win the Iditarod on her next run, it’s looking like Scotch won’t be racing this year, until the Fullers get a call. A magazine wants to do a series of articles on Scotch and are willing to pay all of her entry fees on one condition: Scotch has to allow one of their reporters to live with her and follow her around during the months counting down to the race, and that reporter is Lainey Hughes. It’s only when she arrives with an associate from the magazine that the Fullers learn the assignment has changed: Lainey will also train with Scotch and enter the race as a novice, giving them more time together than either woman had bargained for.
Tara: Scotch and Lainey don’t have much in common, but they’re both interesting, well-written and, by the end, well-matched. Lainey is a war-turned-nature photographer who crawled into a bottle after being seriously injured in Bosnia, only coming out when she’s on assignment. Lainey won’t admit she has an alcohol problem, and doesn’t appear to have meaningful relationships with anyone except her editor, Ben.
Brooklyn: Lainey Hughes has traveled the world! She has seen some things that can psychologically mess a person up. What I really admired about her character is her strong will. Please, please, don’t tell Lainey she can’t do something because she WILL DO IT…like Nike. I loved her tenacity. You see her fall from grace, but what was truly amazing is how she gets up, dusts herself off and keeps going. She is a character I could really look up to.
Scotch Fuller has got that swagger about her. Tall (of course) and easy going, she is like a tall glass of Alaskan water. I wish I was like Scotch with a hot bod, a ton of dogs, and confidence to go around.
Tara: I loved Scotch too. She’s very close to her family and has her own small cabin on their property. She has a laser focus on her racing career, spending her days working at the family’s kennels, caring for the dozens of huskies they breed and train. She hasn’t ever left Alaska and after racing three times in the Iditarod, she’s hungry for the win.
I also think it’s brilliant that the dogs are fully formed characters, each with their own personality. I particularly loved Bonaparte, who has his own defined character arc.
The Writing Style
Tara: Broken Trails is very well written, with excellent plotting, pacing and character work. D. Jordan Redhawk includes a lot of detail about what it takes to prepare for the Iditarod, as well as what it’s like on the trail, and she does it without info dumps or slowing down the book. This is a romance, and a lovely one at that, with the relationship building slowly as Lainey and Scotch stay focused on their training.
Brooklyn: I learned so much about the Iditarod and it was crazy interesting! Even after the book was over, I wanted to do more and more research about the race.
Tara: Everything. I love this book.
Tara: I can’t think of anything.
Brooklyn: Me neither!
We both enjoyed Broken Trails. It’s a wonderful slow burn romance and we highly recommend it.
Excerpt from Broken Trails by D Jordan Redhawk
Lainey basked in the heat from the stove, using a dishtowel as a pot holder. “Like a rock.” She poured coffee and inhaled deeply of its aroma. This was one thing she never took for granted. Not every culture had coffee, and she sorely missed it when she was out of country. She sipped, pleased to note Scotch brewed it strong. Turning, she blinked. Was she just checking out my legs?
“That’s good. Sometimes newcomers have trouble sleeping with the constant sunlight.”
Lainey moved to copy Scotch’s stance, leaning against the counter beside her to worship her coffee. “So, what are we doing up so late?”
Scotch chuckled. “This ain’t late.”
Lainey liked the sound of her laugh. “What time is it?”
“About five thirty.”
“Ugh.” She stuck her tongue out, eliciting another warm laugh.
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781594933899
- Publisher: Bella Books
D Jordan Redhawk Online
Note: I received a free review copy of Broken Trails by D Jordan Redhawk. No money was exchanged for this review. I will always review books as honestly as possible and on occasion I refuse to review books.