I began reading The Black Sheep, by Patricia Ryan, because I am unabashedly drawn to the bad boys (a fact that landed me in some trouble when I was young). And honestly, the model’s arresting gaze on the cover whispered to my curiosity. Oh yeah, plus the author is a USA Today bestselling author.
Plus the nearly 400 Amazon reviews helped cement the decision.
This is the story of Harley and Tucker. Harley is the house-sitter in charge. Tucker has a 20 year estrangement from his dad. He arrives home to find the pretty new house-sitter. Now they have a few weeks to spend getting to know one another till Tucker’s dad arrives.
Harley is organized and a wee bit of a control freak and perfectionist. She is regimental in her duties and habits. For her, it’s rooted in a rough past and how she keeps balance in her life now. Tucker is a true black sheep, in that he’d would rather bolt from any sort of conflict, and well intended truths, then deal with reality. He is also casual and lax in all matters of everyday. Clearly, Harley and Tucker are personality opposites.
Technical stuff, some errors that were not caught in editing that distracted from the reading flow and a few places where the tension sagged, but picked back up again in a page or two. It was not enough to keep me from reading on.
For all of Tuckers obvious flaws, he does have a tender and caring streak a mile wide. The time with Harley gives him chances to show those character traits. Haley, for all her prim and proper, can also harbor a careless streak of her own, taking the reader, certainly Tucker, and perhaps herself, by surprise.
Tucker’s friend adds a comic relief that is needed when sexual interest and tensions rise a little to high. A good dose suspense of wondering what Tucker will do next. Will he and dad reconcile or not? Can he win Haley’s heart? A good blend of poignant and sass, fun and sexy. I liked the scene where Harley challenges him to catch her in the swimming pool. His prize if he succeeds—her. That’s some serious stakes.
This is book 1 of the North Moon Bay Book series, by Patricia Ryan.
North Moon Bay Books
The Black Sheep
The Marriage Arrangement
My Best Friend’s Girl