Texas! Lucky

Texas! Lucky

3.9 39
by Sandra Brown
     
 

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The first book in #1 New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown’s beloved Texas! trilogy introduces readers to a close-knit family struggling to go on without its patriarch—and to a man in pursuit of an elusive woman who may hold his future in her hands.
 
Charismatic and easy on the eyes, Lucky Tyler is a born rebel. His romantic

Overview

The first book in #1 New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown’s beloved Texas! trilogy introduces readers to a close-knit family struggling to go on without its patriarch—and to a man in pursuit of an elusive woman who may hold his future in her hands.
 
Charismatic and easy on the eyes, Lucky Tyler is a born rebel. His romantic conquests have earned him his nickname, while his temper gives him his reputation as the family hothead. One night, he gets in a fight over a woman in distress, followed by a night of passion neither of them will soon forget. But the lady in question has a knack for disappearing. When news breaks of a suspicious fire at Tyler Drilling, Lucky is the prime suspect. Now the mystery woman is more than just the object of his obsession. She’s his alibi.

Devon Haines has tried her best to escape Lucky. Yet his bold pursuit and self-assurance are irresistible. In order to clear him of criminal charges, she must reveal her darkest secret; withholding her help could cost him everything he holds dear. Either way, she risks losing him forever.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780553289510
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
01/28/1991
Series:
Texas! Trilogy, #1
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
69,690
Product dimensions:
4.17(w) x 6.86(h) x 0.89(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

There was going to be trouble, and, hell, he just wasn't in the mood for it.

Lucky Tyler, seated on a barstool, was nursing his second whiskey and water. Bothered again by the rough, masculine laughter coming from one corner of the tavern, he glanced irritably over his shoulder to look in that direction.

"Might've known Little Alvin would sniff her out," the bartender said.

Lucky only grunted in response. Turning back to his drink, he hunched his shoulders and sank a little deeper into his slouching position on the barstool. He reasoned that if the broad hadn't wanted the attentions of Little Alvin or any other guy, she wouldn't have come into the lounge alone.

Describing the place as a lounge sure was euphemistic, he thought. The place was a bona fide honky-tonk. It didn't possess a single feature that would elevate it to any higher caliber of drinking hole than that.

It had first opened during the boom, fifty or so years earlier. Before the bar had a flashing neon star out front, before it had indoor plumbing, the place had served bootleg liquor to roughnecks, wildcatters, and the ladies of the night who comforted them when the wells turned up dry or who took their money when they struck black gold.

The highway tavern hadn't had a name then that anybody could remember, and it didn't have one now. It was simply known to locals as "the place," as in, "Meet'chu at the place after work for a drink." Respectable men frequented it alongside those who weren't respectable.

But a respectable woman wouldn't be caught dead inside. If a woman came to the place, she was there for one reason and one reason only. The instant a woman alone darkened the door, hunting season commenced. It was understood.

That's why Lucky wasn't too concerned about the welfare of the woman being hassled by Little Alvin and one of his least savory companions, Jack Ed Patterson.

However, when another burst of laughter erupted from the corner, Lucky swung his gaze around again. Several things struck him as odd. A long-neck beer stood on the chipped Formica table in front of the woman, along with a half-filled glass. A glass? She must have requested it, because at the place long necks weren't usually served with a glass even to a woman. Strange that she had asked for a glass.

She wasn't exactly dolled up either. Oh, she was good-looking, all right, but her makeup was conservative, and her clothing upscale and chic. She wasn't your ordinary gal-about-town on the prowl or even a housewife looking for a distraction from the daily grind or revenge on an inattentive husband. He couldn't quite pigeonhole her, and that intrigued him.

"How long's she been here?" he asked the bartender.

"Got here 'bout a half hour 'fore you came in. Know her?"

Lucky shook his head no.

"Then she sure as hell ain't from around here." The bartender guffawed, implying that Lucky kept a more accurate account of the local female population than the Census Bureau. Which was the truth.

"Soon as she came in and ordered her beer, she drew everybody's attention like flies to honey. 'Course, the rest backed off when Little Alvin showed more than a passing interest."

"Yeah, he's a real ladies' man, all right," Lucky said sardonically.

Little Alvin had been so dubbed merely because he was eighth of the eight offspring born to the Cagneys. Standing 6' 5'', he weighed about 290, 30 pounds of it put on since he had left the NFL several years earlier.

He'd been playing first-string linebacker for the Denver Broncos when he caused a league controversy. One of his quarterback sacks had left a rookie Dolphins player with blurred vision, stuttering speech, and a retirement pension.

The tackle had been so unnecessarily rough, Little Alvin himself had suffered a dislocated shoulder. The team management had used his injury as its reason for not picking up his contract at the end of that season, but it was speculated that management was glad of the excuse to get rid of him.

Upon his suspension, Little Alvin had returned home to East Texas and picked up where he'd left off years before as Milton Point's meanest bully. He still considered himself a superstud football hero.
Tonight neither his dubious charm nor his fame were working on the woman he'd set his sights on. Even from across the dim, smoky lounge, Lucky could see that she was growing more agitated by the minute.

The George Straight ballad blaring from the jukebox prevented him from hearing the words they exchanged, but when Little Alvin laid a meaty hand on the woman's shoulder, there was no mistaking how she felt about his romantic overtures. She shrugged off his hand and reached for her purse. She attempted to slide out of the booth, but 290 pounds of Little Alvin Cagney, along with his sidekick, Jack Ed Patterson, who had recently done time in Huntsville State Prison for assault with a deadly weapon, blocked her escape.

Lucky sighed. He was going to have to do something about this, and damned if he was in the mood for it. It had been a hell of a week. Business was rotten, and a loan payment was only weeks away from coming due. Susan was dropping hints about a diamond ring for her left hand. The last thing he needed was a run-in with a couple of lowlifes like Little Alvin and Jack Ed.

But what if their quarry had been his kid sister, Sage? He would like to think that some decent guy would come to her aid. Of course, Sage was smart enough not to get herself into a sticky situation like this. But you couldn't decline to protect a woman's virtue just because she was dim-witted.

His daddy had drilled into him and Chase, his older brother by a year and a half, that when a lady said no to a pass, the answer was no. Period. No questions asked. The woman might not be very nice for leading a guy on and then changing her mind at the last minute, but the answer was still, unequivocally, no. And his mother expected him to treat every woman chivalrously, no matter how trashy she was.

His ears still rang whenever he recalled the lecture his mother had given him in the ninth grade, when he brought home the delicious gossip that Drucilla Hawkins had "done it" at the drive-in the previous Saturday night. What had gone on in the backseat of her boyfriend's blue Dodge was the talk of the school.

Laurie Tyler wasn't interested in the juicy details of Miss Hawkins's fall from grace. She had sternly warned her younger son that he had better not be overheard defaming any girl's reputation, no matter how reliable the source of the gossip was. He'd been admonished to treat every woman—and her reputation—with respect and dignity. It had been such a scalding lecture that he remembered it to this day, nearly twenty years later, at the ripe old age of thirty-two.

He muttered another foul curse beneath his breath, and tossed back the remainder of his drink. Some things you had to do whether you wanted to or not. Defending a woman from Little Alvin and Jack Ed was one of those things.

One booted foot, then the other, unhooked its heel from the chrome rung encircling the legs of the barstool. Lucky swiveled around on the maroon vinyl seat, worn slick and smooth by too many rear ends to count.

"Careful, Lucky," the bartender warned. "They've been drinking all afternoon. You know how mean Little Alvin gets when he's drunk. Jack Ed's bound to have his knife handy, too."

"I'm not looking for trouble."

"Maybe not, but if you cut in on Little Alvin's action, you'll get trouble."

Apparently everyone else in the place smelled trouble, too, because the moment Lucky left his stool at the bar, bells on the pinball machines fell silent for the first time in hours. The row of video games still beeped and burped and flashed a kaleidoscope of electronic colors, but those playing them turned curiously, instantly attuned to the sudden shift in the atmosphere. It was like the expectant stillness before a tornado struck.

Drinkers at the bar and those occupying booths ceased conversations to follow Lucky's swaggering progress across the room toward the booth where the woman was demanding that an amused Little Alvin get out of her way.

"I'd like to leave now."

Lucky wasn't fooled by the quiet calm in her voice. Her eyes were shifting nervously between the two men. Jack Ed was a fraction of Little Alvin's size, but in his own way he was intimidating. He had a ferret's eyes and the sharp, pointed grin of a jackal. They hadn't fallen for her phony defiance any more than he had.

"How come you're in such a hurry, honey?" Little Alvin cooed. He bent over her so far, she recoiled into the corner of the booth. "We're just startin' to have fun."

Jack Ed giggled at his friend's clever way with words. His laughter broke off when Lucky spoke from behind him.

"I don't think the lady's having any fun a-tall, Alvin."

Little Alvin came around with all the grace, agility and temperament of a bull whose tail had just been given a hard yank. Lucky was standing with one thumb tucked beneath his waistband, the hand casually curled over his tooled-leather belt, and the other braced against the tarnished brass hat rack mounted on the end of the neighboring booth. His feet were crossed at the ankles. He was smiling pleasantly. Only the cocky tilt of his dark blond head and the coldness of his blue eyes belied his friendly tone of voice.

"Bug off, Tyler. This is none of your b'iness."

"Oh, I think it is. Since a dumb slab of meat like you doesn't seem to appeal to the lady, she's still fair game, right?" Lucky looked down at the woman and gave her the warm smile and lazy wink that had coaxed a legion of women out of their better judgment and their clothing. "Hi. How're you doin'?"
Little Alvin growled his disapproval and took two hulking footsteps toward Lucky, whom he championed in size by three inches in height and a hundred pounds. He swung a ham-size fist toward Lucky's head.

Lucky, for all his seeming nonchalance, was braced and ready for the attack. He parried quickly to his left, ducking the blow and simultaneously catching Jack Ed under the chin with his elbow. Everybody in the place heard his lupine teeth smash together. Jack Ed careened into the nearest pinball machine, which set up a chorus of ringing bells.

Having temporarily dispatched Jack Ed, Lucky pivoted in time to place his right eye directly in the path of Alvin's ramming right fist. Lucky had been kicked in the head by a horse when he was twelve. The kick had knocked him cold. It hadn't hurt nearly as much as Alvin's punch.

His whole body shivered with the pain of the impact. If he'd had time to indulge it, his stomach would have rebelled by heaving up two glasses of whiskey and water. As it was, he knew he had to either get back into the fight or die at the enraged hands of Little Alvin Cagney.

Bar patrons were cheering him on, except those who feared reprisal from Alvin. Knowing all he had on his side were dexterity and speed, he lowered his head and drove his shoulder into Alvin's gut, knocking the larger man off balance.

A sudden shout warned him of Jack Ed's recovery. Spinning around, he barely had time to suck in his midsection before Jack Ed took a swipe at it with his infamous knife. He kicked the extended knife out of Jack Ed's hand, then gave him a quick chop in the Adam's apple with the edge of his hand. The ex-con toppled into a table; it crashed to the floor. Jack Ed sprawled beside it, unconscious, lying in a puddle of spilled beer and broken glass.

Lucky came around again to confront Alvin. Looking like the provoked giant in a Grimm's tale, the former linebacker was crouched in an attack stance.

"Stop this!"

The woman was out of the booth. Hands on hips, she was furiously addressing both of them, though Lucky seemed the only one aware of her. Little Alvin's eyes were red with fury. His nostrils were receding and expanding like twin bellows.

"Get out of the way or you'll get hurt!" Lucky shouted to her.

"I want this to stop. You're behaving like—"

Little Alvin, giving her no more regard than he would a pesky housefly, flicked his hand at her, catching her lip and drawing blood. She fell backward.

"You son of a bitch," Lucky snarled. Any brute who would strike a woman didn't deserve a clean fight. Swinging up his booted foot, he viciously caught the other man in the crotch.

Instantly Little Alvin was stunned motionless, seemingly held upright by the gasps that rose from the onlookers. Then he clutched the injured area and dropped to his knees, rattling glassware throughout the building. At last, eyes crossing, he went over face first into the puddle of beer beside Jack Ed.

Lucky gulped in several cleansing breaths and tentatively dabbed at his swelling eye. Stiffly he approached the woman, who was attempting to stanch her bleeding lip with a paper napkin.

"You all right?"

She flung her head up and glared at him with vivid green eyes. Lucky, expecting tears, admiration, and gushing gratitude, was startled to see naked enmity on her face.

"Thanks a lot," she said sarcastically. "You were a big help."

"Wha—"

"Lucky," the bartender called to him, "here comes the sheriff."

Lucky blew out a gust of breath as he surveyed the damage the fight had caused. Overturned tables and chairs made the place look as if it had sustained storm damage. Broken glass, spilled beer, and capsized ashtrays had left a disgusting mess on the floor where two battered bodies still lay.

And the ungrateful tart, whose honor he had stupidly defended, was mad at him.

Some days, no matter how hard you tried, nothing went right. Placing his hands on his hips, his head dropping forward, he muttered, "Hell."

Meet the Author

Sandra Brown is the author of more than fifty New York Times bestsellers, with over seventy million copies of her books in print. She and her family divide their time between South Carolina and Texas.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Arlington, TX
Date of Birth:
March 12, 1948
Place of Birth:
Waco, Texas
Education:
Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, Texas Christian University, 2008
Website:
http://www.sandrabrown.net/

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Texas! Lucky 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 39 reviews.
jpress1206 More than 1 year ago
Just pass on this early Sandra Brown book. I'm not even going to read the others in the series. I have read more current books by Ms. Brown and have loved them all, but I received this book in a giveaway and felt compelled to read and review it. Being written some 20-odd years ago, you can tell how her writing style has finessed to what it is today. Texas Lucky is unbelievable most of the time. I thought the female lead to be very ignorant for someone that was supposed to be quite intelligent and Lucky, although trying to pull off a white knight-type routine, is actually obnoxious in his conceit. The secondary characters make this book readable as the whole storyline is basically unbelievable. I am a huge Brown fan but I truly did not enjoy this book...or writing this review :(
judiOH More than 1 year ago
lucky is the third member of the family in this trilogy. handsome and lucky(thus the nickname) with the ladies, lucky finds himself in a mess. the company is in danger of going under, and there is a fire on their property destroying equipment they need. the police accuse lucky of setting the fire and he must prove his innocence. all this while "getting lucky" with his future wife. i am so glad i didn't miss this trilogy and you will be too!
Amarillis More than 1 year ago
Enjoyable romance, nothing too deep (until the end), but good if you're in the mood for some light reading.
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Bargain_Booker More than 1 year ago
This book was a good starting point for the rest of the series. I didn't think it was as good as the next two, but it definitely wasn't terrible. All the characters are introduced in detail and you fall in love with this family immediately.
KLBooksAZ More than 1 year ago
This was a nice easy read, full of fires, arrests, lusts and who-done-its! I liked Lucky, Devon, and his whole family. I struggle in books when there's great tragedy, so one part of this was difficult. But don't let it deter you from reading...you just gotta be alot stronger than me. lol I have a really good time with Sandra's stories. =] Looking forward to seeing what happens with Lucky's brother Chase next.
saraaax3 More than 1 year ago
The book itself was okayy not something that i would read again. This book was one of those books that you read once and thats it..
MiamiReader More than 1 year ago
I bought this book by accident and boy am I happy that I did. I enjoyed all the characters in the book, it is clear from the start that this will be a trilogy, as the characters and their relationships are really well though out. I was hooked from the start and could not put it down. There were many sleepless nights! If you want a good novel that: makes you out laugh out loud, yell in anger, weep in sorrow, and has you cheering for a family that you will grow to love; then this is the book for you. I cannot wait to ready the other books in the trilogy. Cheers MiamiReader PS: I even have this as an audiobook to listen too while stuck in Miami traffic!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading this book. I was looking for a book with some romance in it. This book didn't have too much romance in it and was very entertaining. Good plot and the characters were strong.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I completely fell in love with Lucky! He makes the book with his sexiness and his sense of humor. It's an interesting plot and has some really sweet romantic parts as well. The story between Lucky and Devon is really sweet and I LOVE the ending! I can't wait to read about Chase and Sage! I highly recommend this book!
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Brennie More than 1 year ago
I have read other Sandra Brown books that I enjoyed, but the contrived plot lines and silliness of this one are just too ridiculous. If I had not been in the hospital, I would not have finished it. The mother, Laurie, is the only character that behaves like a real person.
bella_1073 More than 1 year ago
The Sandra Brown Texas! series so for is a great and easy read. I read Texas Lucky in 2 days. I could not put it down. I am now in the middle of the second book, Texas Sage which is a story about Lucky's older brother who lost his wife and unborn baby in a car accident. The car was driven by an old HS friend that he used to pick on. It is a great read a truly recommend it !
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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summerreader0212 More than 1 year ago
Lucky is accused of a fire and the only person that he can turn to for his allibi doesn't want anything to do with him. Will the woman save him from prison or will he be acused of the fire and lose his life, his family and his true love?