Big Sky Wedding: Book 5 of Parable, Montana Series

Big Sky Wedding: Book 5 of Parable, Montana Series

4.1 69
by Linda Lael Miller

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The "First Lady of the West," #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller, cordially invites you to Parable, Montana—where love awaits

Wedding bells are ringing in Parable, Montana, but Brylee Parrish hasn't enjoyed the sound since being jilted at the altar by Hutch Carmody. She's over Hutch now, and running a


The "First Lady of the West," #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller, cordially invites you to Parable, Montana—where love awaits

Wedding bells are ringing in Parable, Montana, but Brylee Parrish hasn't enjoyed the sound since being jilted at the altar by Hutch Carmody. She's over Hutch now, and running a multimillion-dollar business is challenging enough for this country gal. So she should avoid falling head-over-boot-heels for A-list actor Zane Sutton. He's come home to his rodeo roots, but Hollywood lured him away once and just might again. Yet everything about him, from his easy charm to his concern for his young half brother, seems too genuine to resist….

Zane didn't come to Parable for love—but count on a spirited woman to change a jaded cowboy's mind. Problem is, Brylee's not convinced he's here to stay. Good thing he's determined to prove to her, kiss by kiss, that she's meant to be his bride.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Miller's name is synonymous with the finest in western romance."

-RT Book Reviews

"Linda Lael Miller creates vibrant characters and stories I defy you to forget."

-#1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber

"Miller's down-home, easy-to-read style keeps the plot moving, and she includes...likable characters, picturesque descriptions and some very sweet pets."

-Publishers Weekly on Big Sky Country

"A passionate love too long denied drives the action in this multifaceted, emotionally rich reunion story that overflows with breathtaking sexual chemistry."

-Library Journal on McKettricks of Texas: Tate

"Miller once again tells a memorable tale."

-RT Book Reviews on A Creed in Stone Creek

Library Journal
There's nothing like being caught hugging a tree to get a relationship off to an interesting start, so when "reformed" movie star Zane Sutton finds successful businesswoman Brylee Parrish with her arms around a cottonwood, she's mortified—and prickly—but he's enchanted. VERDICT Touching, funny, and graced with an abundance of wonderful characters both new and those reprised from earlier titles in the series, Miller's latest is a satisfying visit to a town fans have come to love. Miller (Big Sky Summer) lives in the Spokane area.

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Parable Series , #5
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There was, as it happened, considerably more timber in and around the town of Three Trees, Montana, than the name would lead a person to believe, and that was fine with Zane Sutton. He'd had enough urban crowds, concrete, steel and pavement to last him a good long while—say, forever.

Now? Bring on the trees, the blue and purple mountains, the wild rivers and the crystal-clear lakes and streams.

For most of his adult life, Zane had taken each day as it came, content with whatever those twenty-four fleeting hours had to offer, rarely planning anything beyond entering the next rodeo, in the next town over, the next county over, the next state over. Everything else—relationships, off-season jobs, mostly driving, loading or unloading trucks, and even his accidental career in the movies—wound behind him, basically meaningless, a long trail of things that had seemed like a good idea at the time.

It wasn't that Zane had a lot of regrets. Recently, though, he'd begun thinking that, at thirty-four, he ought to choose a direction, stop carousing and start acting more like a grown-up. He'd wanted to light somewhere and stay put, see if he couldn't rustle himself up a life with some substance to it.

Now, under a June sun bright as polished brass, with his boots firmly planted on land that belonged to him, mortgage-free, Zane took off his hat, ran the fingers of one hand through his light brown hair, drew a deep, smog-free breath and tilted his head back to admire the cloudless stretch of blue overhead, arching from horizon to horizon. As far as he was concerned, no ceiling in any cathedral anywhere, no matter how grand, could rival that particular patch of big Montana sky.

The sight stirred a certain reverence inside him, and he drank it in whenever he remembered to look up. He felt the tenuous beginnings of restoration in the rocky, parched terrain of his soul, a nurturing process, like a good, steady rain at the end of a long drought.

He'd finally found a home on these acres upon acres of land, and he intended to take root, like the venerable oaks and pines, cottonwoods and firs, all around him. He'd bought Hangman's Bend Ranch as an investment a few years before, in a what-the-hell-why-not kind of mood, going halves with his hotshot investment tycoon brother, Landry, who was a different brand of drifter than Zane, but a drifter just the same.

Neither one of them had bothered to visit the place; they'd just signed the papers and gone on with their lives.

Although Zane couldn't speak for his brother, he himself had been restless for a long time, since boyhood, for sure, but just a few days before, he'd had an epiphany of sorts. Nothing mystical, no blinding light knocking him flat, no angels singing; he'd simply realized he was damn good and fed up with the status quo, glamorous though it was. Acting in movies was all right—mostly easy work, if deadly boring a lot of the time—but lately it had been getting harder and harder to tell the difference between playing a part and the real deal.

The offshoot of all this sudden clarity was that Zane had found himself on a car lot in L.A., trading in his supercharged European ride for a shiny silver pickup truck with an extended cab. In a spate of nonverbal ad-libbing, he'd driven the new truck to the nearest animal shelter, gone inside and adopted a dog, an unprepossessing critter, big and black with floppy ears. He dubbed the animal Slim, mainly because its ribs showed, a consequence of missing a few meals along the way. Leaving pretty much everything else he owned behind, Zane, with Slim, had headed north by northeast, stopping only to grab a couple of drive-through burgers here and there, gas up the truck and snooze a little in rest-stop parking lots.

They'd reached Hangman's Bend late the previous night, camping out in the unfurnished ranch house. That morning, Slim had taken a liking to a certain shady spot on the porch, so he'd stayed behind when Zane set out to get a good look at the wooded section of his land. He was on foot because his horse, Blackjack, was still in transit from the California stables where he'd been boarding the gelding since his move to L.A. several years earlier.

He followed the meandering creek for a bit, enjoying the way it stitched its path through the woods like a wide strand of silver thread, clear and sun-sparkled and almost musical as it rolled over worn stones that resembled jewels under the water, coursed around primordial boulders and tree stumps, some of them petrified, on its way to wherever it was going.

Zane made a mental note to check a map later, when he got back to the house, because he liked knowing the facts about things, liked knowing exactly where he was, both literally and figuratively, but at the moment, he was in no great hurry to turn homeward. He was out to find the southern corner of his property, supposedly staked out and flagged.

At least eight feet wide—probably ten or twelve in some places—the stream would be difficult to cross, but eventually he came to a natural bridge, a line of six flat stones, small and fairly far apart. Still fit, even after living fancy from the day he signed that first film contract till he left Hollywood behind him, he figured he could make it to the other side without getting his boots wet, let alone taking a header into that glacier-chilled creek water.

With his arms outstretched for balance, the way he and Landry used to do when they walked the top rail of a fence as kids, he moved with relative ease, never setting both feet down on the same rock, since there wasn't room. When he reached the opposite bank, no longer concentrating so hard, he stopped short, startled by what amounted to a vision.

A wood nymph, dressed in faded blue jeans, battered boots and a pale green Western shirt, stood in the center of the small clearing just ahead, both arms wrapped around the trunk of a lone cotton-wood tree. Her hair was brown and shiny and thick, just brushing her shoulders, and it caught the leaf-filtered light, threw it around like colored beams in a prism. Her head was tilted back slightly, her eyes closed, and the expression on her fine-boned face was downright blissful.

What the hell?

Zane could have watched her for hours—just looking at the woman gave him the same belly-clenching thrill he'd gotten in his bronc-riding days, in that moment before the chute gate swung open and the official eight-second countdown began—but, suddenly off his game, he took an unintended half step in her direction, a twig snapped under the sole of his boot and the moment was over.

The nymph's eyes were wide, hazel or maybe green or pale gray, and at the moment, seeing him, they were shooting fire. She backed away from the tree, and Zane noticed that her shirt was open and she was wearing a tank top underneath. She had great breasts, neither too big nor too small, and bits of bark clung to her clothes. As she glared at him, she let her arms drop briefly to her sides, then fisted up both hands and pressed the knuckles hard against her well-made hips. He knew she recognized him when he saw her jawbones lock together, and that struck a wistful note somewhere in the vicinity of his heart. He'd have given a lot, in that moment, to be his pre-Hollywood self, just another cowboy with a cocky grin, an attitude and a line or two.

"What are you doing here?" the sprite demanded, finding her voice at last. She took a few marching steps toward him, evidently thought better of coming too close and stopped while there was still a safe distance between them. Her emphasis on the word you, though slight, chapped Zane's hide a little, since, after all, he wasn't the one trespassing on somebody else's land, now was he?

"I live here," he replied reasonably, in his own good time, standing with his feet planted slightly apart and his arms folded. The irritation he'd felt was short-lived, quickly replaced by a sort of amused delight. Whoever the lady was, the fact that she might have rescued those clean but otherwise shabby clothes of hers from somebody's ragbag notwithstanding, she was most definitely a looker.

She didn't come any closer, nor did she say anything, but it did seem that she'd lost some of her zip.

And Zane couldn't resist adding, "Were you just hugging that tree, or was I imagining things?"

She blushed then, her cheeks going a glorious, peachy shade of pink. Her mouth was wide and expressive—inherently kissable. And, now that they weren't standing so far apart, he could see that her eyes were hazel. The color probably changed, depending on what she was wearing, her present mood or even the weather.

"I was doing a personal-growth exercise," she informed him stiffly, as though any idiot would have known that without asking, and Zane could tell she resented telling him even that much. She was proud and stubborn, he decided, and competent at everything she did.

But what the devil was a "personal-growth exercise," exactly? Something she'd picked up watching the Oprah Winfrey Network?

He walked slowly toward her, put out his hand for a friendly shake, hoping she'd get the message that he wasn't fixing to pounce. "Zane Sutton," he said, by way of introduction.

She looked at his hand, then at his face, then ran both palms down the thighs of her jeans before shaking the offered hand for a full nanosecond. "Brylee Parrish." She gave up the name grudgingly, like it was a state secret. "And I knew who you were without being told, thanks."

Clearly, Brylee Parrish was not impressed by stardom, his or anyone else's.

And he liked that, liked it a lot, because he'd never been all that dazzled by the phenomenon himself, based as it was on appearances instead of reality.

"Then you had an advantage," Zane replied mildly.

Brylee cocked her head to one side, studying him skeptically. "You actors," she finally said, not quite scoffing, but coming real close.

Zane chuckled. "I like to consider myself a recovering actor," he said.

"Please," she said, and though there was mockery in her tone, she wasn't being sarcastic. Her hands were still on her hips, though, and her chin still jutted out, and everything about her warned, Stay back.

"You don't think we can recover?"

She sighed, considering the question. "I'd say it's unlikely," she decided, at some length. "Show business people are—show business people."

"Which means?"

"You come and go. You buy or build ridiculously big, elaborate houses, not just in Montana, but in Colorado and New Mexico and Arizona, too—all over the West, in fact, basically scarring the landscape and squandering natural resources. You get on your high horse and boycott things—beef, for instance—thereby putting good people out of business after generations of honest effort. You get involved in local politics just long enough to cause lasting problems, maybe start a few bitter feuds among the local yokels, and then you sell your property to some other famous so-called idealist know-itall and move merrily on to ruin yet another community."

Zane gave a long, low whistle of amused exclamation. There was some truth to her words—maybe a lot of it—but he didn't like being lumped in with all those well-meaning but too-often fickle celebrities. Hello? He was a rodeo cowboy at heart, raised country by a woman who waited on tables for a living—the movie stuff had been thrust upon him, greatness not included. "Why not just come right out and say what you mean, instead of sugarcoating your opinions so I'll feel all warm and toasty and welcome?" he gibed.

Brylee sagged a little at the shoulders, as though sighing with her whole body. "Most of us were hoping you wouldn't show up," she said. "That you'd just let the ranch sit there, instead of hitting Three Trees like some kind of consumer storm trooper, putting in media rooms, restaurant-style kitchens the Food Channel would envy, tennis courts and indoor swimming pools—Olympic-size, of course."

"Gee," Zane answered dryly. "Thanks for the generous assessment. Seems like you're assuming a lot, though."

"Am I?"

"Yes," he said. "I believe you are. You don't know a damn thing about me, Ms. Parrish, except that I used to live and work in Hollywood. And I happen to like the house I'm in now, pretty much the way it is. Except, of course, for the antiquated plumbing, the dry-rot in some of the walls, the missing floorboards and the sagging roof. Oh, and I'll be glad when they switch the electricity on later today, I admit. But you'd probably view any improvements as conspicuous consumption, unless I miss my guess."

"You won't stay," Brylee said flatly, after giving his words due consideration and then, obviously, dismissing them. And him.

"You'll see," he replied, every bit as nettled as he was intrigued.

And that was the end of their first conversation. She went one way, and he went the other.

Hardly an encouraging start, in Zane's opinion, but a start, nonetheless.

Something—God knew what, but something— had just begun, he knew that by the strange tightening in his gut, and whatever it was, there would be no stopping it.

By the time he'd crossed the creek again, he was grinning.

Meet the Author

The daughter of a town marshal, Linda Lael Miller is the author of more than 100 historical and contemporary novels. Now living in Spokane, Washington, the “First Lady of the West” hit a career high when all three of her 2011 Creed Cowboy books debuted at #1 on the New York Times list. In 2007, the Romance Writers of America presented her their Lifetime Achievement Award. She personally funds her Linda Lael Miller Scholarships for Women. Visit her at

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Big Sky Wedding 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 69 reviews.
rhonda1111RL More than 1 year ago
3 STARS Big Sky Wedding is finally Brylee's story. Brylee has not been to happy since she was left at the alter by Hutch. He ended up marrying someone else. Brylee threw herself into her business and made it a success. She lives in her own apartment on the ranch that she and her brother own. Newcomer to the area is Zane Sutton. Zane was a rodeo champion turned actor and decided to come to Montana and live on the ranch his brother Landry and him had bought years ago. Zane leaves a note and a big check to his housekeeper back in LA. Zane's house needs work badly he is sleeping on a air mattress. Landry calls him up and tells him his father dropped off their half brother 12 year old Nash. They really don't know him. His mother is out of the picture. Landry is supposed to go on a business trip overseas tomorrow. So he is putting him on a plane and Zane better meet the plane. Nash does not have much and his life had not been to stable. At least when he and Landry were kids and his dad took off they had their mom's love. Things were tough but they were together. They went shopping and bought some groceries and beds. Then before they get to comfortable Zane gets another call on his cell from Cleo. She is mad that Zane just took off and left her. She was too old to look for a different employer. She orders him too buy her a first class ticket in two days. Zane had met Brylee on his property and liked her a lot first of all. When she saw his dog the next day and read his collar she came over to give him a lecture. Slim was starving and she could not believe he was not taking better care of his dog. Zane had just got the stray from the pound before moving here. He had not time enough yet to make a difference. Zane's idea of a simpler life has not going as planned. He now had his brother living with him, dog, housekeeper and his ranch was torn up getting it fixed like Cleo wants. Even Landry shows up to see what the ranch they had bought and split looks like. Brylee is coming out more and more socially now and just not working. She is also scared to trust a guy now. I like that now that Zane realizes that Nash needs someone at first was not happy but steps up to the plate and takes care of Nash and when he promises something he will keep his word. He remembers his childhood and how his father would come and go. He plans to make Nash a part of his family give him stuff he needs and wants. This romance novel is all about relationships between different people and what they want in the future. Their is a couple of love scenes towards the end of the book that I skipped over. It kept my attention and I read it in one setting. Did not want to put it down. I do want to know Landry's story and hope the next book is his. I was given this book to read and asked in exchange to give honest review of it by NetGalley and Harlequin. 08/28/2013 PUB Harlequin Imprint Harlequin HQN ISBN9780373777747 384 pages
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Brylee Parrish meets and falls in love at first sight with Zane Sutton after her disasterous botched wedding to Hutch Carmody she finally gets her chance at a husband and future children. Another great visit to Parable Montana.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Who are you and what did you do with LL Miller??? This book is nothing she could have/would have written even a year ago. So much dog kibble I gained 10 pounds! Book was 236 pages and nothing happened until page 200 and then the first time her "stars" made love it immediately jumped 6 months to the wedding. Don't get it at all. So much about this book was strange. What millionaire movie star lets his housekeeper design and furnish his ranch house. Promised the kid brother a horse he never got. Missing father who never appeared or was heard from. Too many lose ends. Poorly done. Sorry!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was just starting to enjoy this book and then we rushed to an ending. I have read the others in this series but this was disappointing. I also had a hard time really liking the female lead. This book just was not at the same level as what I would expect from this author. Hope the next one is better!
cheekys_dance More than 1 year ago
I have to say that I was a bit disappointed with this one. I have enjoyed the entire Big Sky series so far, but this book felt too short; cut off at the end. What is there, is well written,but it wasn't enough. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love Linda Lael Miller and her books. This book did not disappoint. The characters are strong and the story is so interesting. Such fantastic romance and intrigue. Highly recommend!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read.... Warm and happy ending, just as it should be.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read!
sugarpine721 More than 1 year ago
I love Linda Lael Miller's books. They are what romance is made of...they just make you feel so darn warm and good. The HEA endings leave you with the feeling that all is right in the world.
IngaKS More than 1 year ago
My review: I love a good contemporary western and Linda Lael Miller is really good at bringing it alive with the decent plot and characters to die for. It is a second book of hers that I read. The first one was from the same series - Parable, Montana - Big Sky Summer and when I got the chance to review Big Sky Wedding I had no doubts that I wanted to read it. I fell in love with the surroundings and characters of Parable and I was glad to meet them again in Big Sky Wedding. Plot: All the books in the series are standalone books where different couples are the main characters. Big Sky Wedding gives you the story of Brylee and Zane. I met Brylee and many other characters already in Big Sky Summer. Anyway, Brylee has experienced something that no woman ever should - she was jilted while walking down on the isle for getting married. Even though she understood, that it was a right thing for her in long term, it broke her heart and she lived in humiliation for quite some time. Now, being an owner of a big company, she keeps her heart safe from men and focuses on her company. That is until Zane shows up. Zane is an A-list Hollywood player and has come back to his roots, at least for a while. Neither Brylee nor Zane are looking for love, but it just happens. The attraction between them is too strong to avoid and when Zane realizes that Brylee is not just a woman, but the woman, he is going after what he wants - Brylee. It is a love story, but besides that, there are other great things about this book - the dialogue was captivating and witty and I got a lot of giggles while reading. I truly enjoyed all the characters in the story and the Parable itself. The author gives you quite bright and vivid pictures of Parable, so it's impossible not to want visiting the place and experiencing it in person! Characters: Before writing about the characters, I was thinking, that in Linda Lael Miller's books there are always two very important non-human characters - family and community. Family ties play a big role in the book and it influences almost all the characters either they want it or not. And community is another big influencer in Parable. It is tight-knitted society where almost everybody knows everyone and when it matters, they are there for you to help and support. I loved that! I liked Brylee already in the previous book where her background story was mentioned and I was excited to see what the author had to offer to Brylee. It is mortifying and humiliating to be left in front of the family and whole Parable just few minutes before getting married, so Brylee had to struggle to get over the humiliation. It takes a very strong person to have faith and trust in love after that. So she has hidden her heart away. Little did she know when Zane came into the picture. I was happy to see, how she step by step gave herself a chance. She definitely deserved a happy ending. Zane comes from a family with no means and he understands the value of the family.I loved how he took in his brother, knowing, that family matters and that family is exactly what Nash needs. I also admired Zane's persistence in his relationship with Brylee. Loved the relationship dynamics and how Zane proved, that he truly loves her. I think Linda Lael Miller does a great work with all the other characters in the book. She gives them their own stories and you keep wondering which ones of them will be the main characters in the upcoming books.
TinaMarieReviews 3 months ago
Hotness Rating 3 out of 5 I am a huge fan of Linda Lael Miller and the Parable, Montana series. Unfortunately, Big Sky Wedding was just okay for me. I didn't love it, but wouldn't say it's a bad read. It was just not one of those books that wouldn't have made me can't wait for the next one to come out. That being said since the series already has me hooked and this book was not terrible it also won't stop me from continuing on in this series. I really liked Zane. He was a good man who just happened to be a famous actor. Unfortunately, that was all it took for Brylee to take an instant dislike to him. I can't say that I didn't like Brylee exactly. I get why she was gun shy. After all, being left literally at the altar would be enough to make any girl a little weary. She was just not a character that stuck with you. Their romance came across as words on a page rather than a true "can't live without you" connection. This book did provide us with a few sub-characters that I found terribly amusing and interesting. The housekeeper made me laugh out loud. I loved how she didn't care that Zane was rich and famous (he did not act like he was rich and famous at all, by the way), but told it like it was. I feel like there was a lot of missed opportunities where Zane's brothers were concerned. I mean there was the barely a teenager brother who was raised (and I use that term loosely in this case) by their good-for-nothing father and his other (equally as wealthy, but very angry and distant) brother Landry. Both of these characters screamed for more background and character development. I know Landry gets his own story in Big Sky Secrets, so maybe the plan is to keep him a mystery until then. But, I feel like there was too much left out there for this book to be a success. I'll crossing my fingers that it'll be worth it in the next book. Thank you to NetGalley for the loan of this book in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful as usual.
RtBBlog More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Aubrey Book provided by NetGalley for review Review originally posted at Romancing the Book I have been a fan of Linda Lael Miller for a long time. I love her writing and her ability to make me visit a part of the US that I have never been to. I was a bit disappointed with the latest addition to the Parable, Montana series. I felt that I waited too long to see the couple come together. I just found there to be way too much background information on Zane, his brothers Nash and Landry, his housekeeper Cleo, and his parents. The love story and HEA was too rushed and too wrapped up. It just felt a bit too predictable for Miller. Yes, I found the ending to be sweet and adorable but it did not sit right with me. I would have preferred if Zane and Brylee had a longer courtship or if we heard about their actual dates instead of just getting an epilogue of their wedding. To me, the title did not fit either. I understand that Brylee was left at the alter and reluctant to date again and let alone get married. However the only fact that the wedding is only read about in the epilogue made it seem like an after thought. I loved all the characters Miller introduced in this installment. I really enjoyed Clea as a character. She was funny and got things done. I liked hearing how Walker and Casey were doing. I loved how close Brylee was to her niece and nephew. I do look forward to reading Landry’s story. He is the opposite of Zane in many ways that I’m interested to learn more about him and what made him leave the big city behind.
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JCHJL More than 1 year ago
Loved the whole series. Great summer reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Evie told to tell you that her nook broke..... she said you can email her at 'eviechristoph0620 @ gmail .com' (no spaces...) your welcome
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I waited months for this book, and I can honestly say I wasn't a bit disappointed. I love meeting new characters as well as catching up with the ones I have read about in the past. I highly recommend this and all of Ms. Miller's books!
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twoodall More than 1 year ago
Great love story.
pkgeihs54 More than 1 year ago
Ms. Miller has long been a favorite of mine and the Big Sky series has not been any different. My only complaint is that there won't be any more of them.