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Simply Love

Simply Love

4.3 48
by Catherine Anderson
     
 

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Even the hardest heart can be softened by love ...

Cassandra Zerek is a true innocent in a wild anddangerous place -- but her indomitable spirit and gentle soul make her stronger than anyone suspects.

The owner of a Colorado mining empire, Luke Taggart's wealth and position can buy him anything, yet he has grown bored with a life of saloons, gambling,

Overview

Even the hardest heart can be softened by love ...

Cassandra Zerek is a true innocent in a wild anddangerous place -- but her indomitable spirit and gentle soul make her stronger than anyone suspects.

The owner of a Colorado mining empire, Luke Taggart's wealth and position can buy him anything, yet he has grown bored with a life of saloons, gambling, and loose women. Nothing soothes his restless inner yearning -- until he spies Cassandra, as fresh and pure as a spring morning, and vows he will possess her. The radiant, charmingly naïve youngbeauty seems blind to the depth of Luke's desire or the lengths he is willing to go to seduce her. But the lady is wise, with an unwavering faith in the magical powers of love. And she's determined to awaken the good man hiding in Luke's tormented heart, for only one precious giftwill truly win her: his deep, passionate, and unsullied love.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Luke Taggart is bored. He's made his fortune in the Colorado gold mines and bought the best of everything, including women. But lately his life is like a glass of ale left out overnight-flat, with all the fizz gone. He longs for the warmth and comfort of family life, but that would mean taking a wife, which he has vowed never to do. When he happens upon Cassandra Zerek as she's reading to a group of children, he realizes Cassie is the woman he wants for a mistress. To get past her objecting father, Luke has him jailed on bogus claim-jumping charges, then "rescues" Cassie and her little brother from destitution by offering her a position as his live-in companion. Cassie misunderstands her duties, and a delightful comedy of errors starts as Luke tries to explain exactly what he has hired her to do-all of which is lost on the naive young woman. He finally resorts to marriage to get what he's paid for, but by that time Cassie has discovered his manipulation and deception, and Luke must find a way to prove his love for her. With this latest, (after Keegan's Lady) Anderson creates a heartwarming page-turner while establishing herself as a major voice in the romance genre. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Wealthy Colorado mining mogul Luke Taggart is bored with the beautiful, loose women in his life. So he tricks nave Cassandra Zerek into becoming his paid companion, but after she moves into his home, he finds he needs her on a different, more committed level. Taggart suffered sexual abuse as a child, which has affected his relationships with women. Anderson (Annie's Song, Avon, 1996) offers a beguiling combination of earthiness and innocence, sweetness and sensuality in this wonderfully written work. The author lives in Sutherlin, Oregon. (JC)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061752063
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
03/17/2009
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
47,322
File size:
612 KB

Read an Excerpt

Simply Love

Chapter One

It was the devil's own afternoon. Black clouds gathered over the teeth-sharp peaks of the Rocky Mountains, and an angry wind from the north drove gusts against the buildings. Locked into his own thoughts, Luke Taggart stood by the window in the Golden Slipper's best upstairs room and watched the sun drift behind a patch of thunderous gray. Heralding the approach of winter, September was coming in with a vengeance. Unless he missed his guess, there would be one hell of a rainstorm before nightfall.

The warm glow of the gaslights placed strategically around the red and gold bedchamber did little to offset the gloom. Oblivious to the opulence he'd once admired, he listened with half an ear to the sibilant hiss of the gas jets, his heart striking two muted beats to every click of the pendulum.

From beyond the windowpane he heard a hoarse shout, followed by a stream of curses. Another barroom brawl in the offing? he wondered without much interest. Leaning a hip against the sill, he gazed morosely through the glass at the cobblestone sidewalks two stories below him. Townsfolk scurried past the Golden Slipper to patronize shops farther up the way. As the ladies walked by the gambling house, they stepped clear off the curb and into the street, their noses lifted in disdain, their fancy skirts drawn close around their ankles, as if the very air might be contaminated.

Anger burned low in Luke's gut like a smoldering coal buried under a thick layer of ash, the fire inside him always

It was the devil's own afternoon. Black clouds gathered over the teeth-sharp peaks of the Rocky Mountains, and an angry wind from the northdrove gusts against the buildings. Locked into his own thoughts, Luke Taggart stood by the window in the Golden Slipper's best upstairs room and watched the sun drift behind a patch of thunderous gray. Heralding the approach of winter, September was coming in with a vengeance. Unless he missed his guess, there would be one hell of a rainstorm before nightfall.

The warm glow of the gaslights placed strategically around the red and gold bedchamber did little to offset the gloom. Oblivious to the opulence he'd once admired, he listened with half an ear to the sibilant hiss of the gas jets, his heart striking two muted beats to every click of the pendulum.

From beyond the windowpane he heard a hoarse shout, followed by a stream of curses. Another barroom brawl in the offing? he wondered without much interest. Leaning a hip against the sill, he gazed morosely through the glass at the cobblestone sidewalks two stories below him. Townsfolk scurried past the Golden Slipper to patronize shops farther up the way. As the ladies walked by the gambling house, they stepped clear off the curb and into the street, their noses lifted in disdain, their fancy skirts drawn close around their ankles, as if the very air might be contaminated.

Anger burned low in Luke's gut like a smoldering coal buried under a thick layer of ash, the fire inside him always there but carefully banked. Snobbish bitches. Let them risk life and limb if that pleased their condescending sense of morality. It was no skin off his nose if one of them got run over by a passing conveyance.

Running a hand inside his unbuttoned shirt, Luke rubbed his chest, his fingertips tracing the hard bulges of muscle under his sweat-moistened skin. God, he felt fired, the kind of tiredness that ran bone-deep and far beyond the physical.

"Luke, baby. Come back to bed."

Gloria's purring demand raked down his spine like a fingernail over a blackboard. In spite of its pretension to elegance, the room carried the subtle odor of fish that always seemed to accompany sex. As was his habit after he'd finished with a woman, he'd scrubbed all trace of her from his person, but the faint smell that lingered in the air and clung to the satin sheets still made him feel unclean.

Christ, what in the hell was wrong with him these days? He should be snuggled into the soft feather mattress of the fancy bed behind him instead of scowling out the window like a restless prisoner. Gloria was a gorgeous woman, with a mane of silky blond hair, skin like cream, and pink-tipped breasts the size of melons. She was also willing to do almost anything for a price, and Luke had an endless store of money to accommodate her. Six months ago, he would have kept her busy until well after midnight. Then, if he'd gotten bored, he might have called in another girl to spice things up. There was nothing like two women in one bed to whet a man's sexual appetite.

Feeling a mild interest stirring, he toyed with the idea of doing just that. Two women-hell, maybe even three. With a bottle of expensive scotch to numb his senses, he could sink back on the downy mattress and give himself up to their ministrations. He was rich, for God's sake. Anything he wanted was his for the asking. All he had to do was snap his fingers.

He'd done it plenty of times before. He could do it again.

So, why didn't he?

That was the question that had lured him from the bed to the window, the question that had his belly knotted and his mind running in dark circles. Not that he was unhappy, exactly. How could he be when he had damned near everything he'd ever wanted? And yet he'd come to realize over the past few weeks that his life reminded him of a glass of ale left out overnight-flat, with all the fizz gone.

Making more money didn't help.

Nor did the women he bedded. Blondes, redheads, brunettes ... each more beautiful than the last. They didn't seem to make a difference. Flat ale was flat ale, and no matter how much salt you added, sometimes it wouldn't come to a head.

Simply Love. Copyright © by Catherine Anderson. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Catherine Anderson is a bestselling American romance novelist. She resides in the pristine woodlands of Oregon, is married to her high school sweetheart, and has authored more than 30 award-winning historical and contemporary romances. Throughout her career, she has made numerous bestseller lists, such as the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Ingram, Waldenbooks, and Barnes & Noble. She has received nominations for the Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Awards, as well as being a RITA® Award finalist, and was given a Career Achievement Award by Romantic Times for Contemporary Romance.

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Simply Love 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 48 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was looking for a nice clean romance, after reading reviews I thought this would be worth reading. I put it down ( chp 1) after the rich eligible bachelor loved having 2 women, wait, three women in his bed at once, not to metion the details. Even if he redeems himself later with true love, I don't care to wade through the muck and mire.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book! The main characters, the setting, the hero(and his pain), the incredible sexual tension... it is all in this story. I've read all of Catherine Andersen's books, and while they're all good, this was my absolute favorite!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was a joy to read. I have not read anything by this author before, but I will now seek out her other works! This is the simple story of a kind, nieve young girl and a ruthless man who falls for her. It is simple, but heart warming and fun to read. Have at it folks!
mrsboone4 10 months ago
Cassandra is a young woman, growing up in a hard Colorado mining town. Her family is poor. Her father and older brother work in the mines, she takes care of her younger brother, her mother is dead. She has a gentle, loving spirit. They have nothing to put in the offering plate at church, so she works all by herself and cleans the church--waxing the floors and pews. Luke Taggart owns most of the town. He decides that he would like to have Cassandra as a live-in mistress. Her father refuses, because Cassandra is a good girl. Luke decides to set up her father and brother in a dishonest scheme, to get them out of the way to enable him to swoop in and make Cassandra a bargain that she can't refuse. As always, Catherine Anderson doesn't disappoint. I can always count on needing more space for new favorites on my bookshelves.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Come on, how can most of the reviewers rate this book five stars? The best you've read......really? I have read alot of Ms. Anderson's books and this by far is not her best.......
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Next res
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is in my top three for all the Catherine Andersin books that I have read, and I have read most of them. It is more edgy than mist of her novels, however I like the fact that is doesnt follow her usual pattern. Which frankly after reading so many of her novels is a little predictable. I like ut very well, great read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read almost all of catherine anderson's book and this is by far the BEST! I loved how the story develops. Yeah she's a little dumb at times but it makes the story all the more intriguing. It gives you great moral backgrounds as well. The ending isn't sappy like most books, you know the typical "they got married, had a baby, yata yata...." It took one day for me to read this book. I just couldn't put it down. I highly recomend it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best romance novels I've yet to read. Depicts human flaws and forgiveness in a captivating way. Yes, it's blunt at times. However, a book should be just that because, lets face it, thats life. Well done Anderson.
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Judith Klutch More than 1 year ago
This is a good story that gets off to a very rockey start! Its worth the read in the long run!!
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