"A lady returns from Mexico to a less than warm welcome"
Reviewed by Clare O'Beara
Posted October 6, 2018
Rose Landro has been living in Mexico for over a decade
when she shoots a cartel leader dead. She jumps in her
elderly Buick and drives to the border. As she is an
American citizen and even has title to a small patch of
land, she makes for Rimrock Ranch, Texas. Rose left here as
a young teen, again fleeing a violent confrontation. She
doesn't know what kind of welcome to expect, nor even who
is alive or dead. All she knows is that she wants to live
Special Ranger Tanner McCade has been called in to
investigate rustling. Two ranchers each claim to have lost
cattle. Bull (or Virgil) Tyler thinks his ornery neighbour
may have stolen his six head, and said neighbour Ferg
Prescott thinks it wouldn't be the first time Bull did
something to spite him. What a pity they could not talk
straight to each other! Fifth in the 'Tylers of Texas'
series means that inevitably a lot of backstory has to be
related, but this occurs in the context of Rose being told
what happened in her absence, so it doesn't feel weighty.
Since Rose was gone, the Tylers have been using her thirty
acres to access the creek. Texas law says nobody owns the
water, but access to the banks is another matter.
Janet Dailey is an author I have admired for a long time.
Her decades-long career saw her writing about many American
states and times, and bringing ordinary, impoverished and
marginalised people to life just as effortlessly as rich
ones and celebrities. Every heroine is memorable, from
ranchers to bodyguards. I am delighted that her books are
Many of the people in this book do questionable things.
Like Tanner, undercover, pulling a gun on an unarmed man
who was getting frisky with a lady. Telling him to desist
would seem quite sufficient. The cattle men are driven by
the need to own and control. This means that nobody
suggests a lease of a right of way to the creek, which is
the first thought I had. Rose, who is determined to live on
her family homestead, has no money or house and the lease
would give her an annual income. In an amusing twist, the
independent young woman instead decides to raise a few
sheep, in spite of all she knows about the cattlemen's
This is a romantic suspense story, with the woman a
survivor of quite a lot of violence. Those who want
something less challenging should look for a tale set in a
city, for the rough open redrock country perfectly mirrors
the craggy ranchers and stubborn women of the adventure.
TEXAS FREE is typical Janet Dailey and will be enjoyed by
her many fans.
She’s a woman with a burning need to break free from
Rose Landro is on the run. Seeking refuge at the Rimrock
Ranch, she is finally ready to claim the land her granddaddy
left her and make a fresh start. But her return is rife with
controversy when cattle begin disappearing—and a handsome
menace named Tanner McCade starts watching Rose a little too
closely. Could the new cowhand be connected to the men she’s
hiding from? Or is there another reason the rugged stranger
is shadowing her every move?
He’s a man ready to fight boldly for his future…
There’s a secret in Rose Landro’s eyes, a mystery that
Special Ranger Tanner McCade is determined to uncover. Even
if the beauty isn’t behind the cattle rustling he’s
investigating, she’s way too skittish, and all too exquisite
for Tanner to just let slide past his piercing gaze. Then he
discovers a vulnerability in Rose that has him aching to
protect her—and longing to possess her….
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