Author: Laura Wright
Series: The Cavanaugh Brothers #1
Release Date: June 3, 2014
My Rating: 4 Stars
When the Cavanaugh brothers return home for their father’s funeral, they discover unexpected evidence of the old man’s surprising double life—a son named Blue, who wants the Triple C Ranch as much as they do. The eldest son, Deacon, a wealthy businessman who couldn’t wait to leave the ranch and move on with his life, is looking to use his powerful connections to stop Blue at any cost. He never expected the ranch’s forewoman, Mackenzie Byrd, to get in his way.
Mac knows Deacon means to destroy the ranch and therefore destroy her livelihood. But as the two battle for control, their attraction builds. Now Deacon is faced with the choice of a lifetime: Take down the Triple C to feed his need for revenge, or embrace the love of the one person who has broken down every barrier to his heart
Can we talk about how this book accomplished all the things a great book should? Branded kept me engaged the entire time, glued to its pages. Longing for answers. Dazzled by hero and heroine's relationship. All the feels. I want a Cavanaugh brother. Please, Laura, can you write me as the heroine to the next one? I'd greatly appreciate it! Sorry, I got sidetracked there for a minute. In all honesty, I loved this book from page one to the end. The tormenting secrets that are released crushed my heart. The sexual tension between Mac and Deacon- holy hell. I haven't read a book with that much sexual tension in a long while. Ms. Wright did it the best way possible. It was wonderful. No just the tension though- their feelings and raw heartbreak just about tore me up, yet kept me mesmerized the entire time.
Branded is an old favorite trope of mine. I've read many a best friend's/sister's best friend books and this one galloped it's way to the top 5. I think it's the intensity of Mac and Deacon's relationship. They are all about the love-hate. He's returned to take away her livelihood, which just so happens to be his father's ranch. The family ranch at which his darkest memories and heartbreak stem from. She is relentless in knowing the why behind his actions and the truth will alter her reality. Even the cold hard facts can make them see eye to eye. However, it doesn't stop them from wholeheartedly pursuing a relationship together. Deacon and Mac are able to have a few spared blissful moments in which they forget about their cruel reality that is pitting them against one another. I do have to hand it to the author she was able to make ME forget about said cruel reality as well. All I saw in my scope was the life they could have and the love the did have.
I need the end of this story. Mac and Deacon's relationship does get its conclusion, but the arc of the series, the tragedy that has torn this family apart is still lingering with many questions to be answered. Of course, we also have those two other hunky Cavanaugh brothers' stories to tell as well. Overall, this is a perfect summer read filled with cowboys, family drama, consuming love, and a story that will keep whispering in your ear long after you've read the last words. Laura Wright as penned yet another winner and I highly recommend this to you all!
*ARC provided by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review*
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