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The Devil You Know
     

The Devil You Know

4.5 2
by Jo Goodman
 

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From the USA Today bestselling author of This Gun for Hire and one of today's “premier western romance writers,”* a captivating new Western historical romance . . .
 
WHAT HE DOESN’T KNOW . . .
 
After a horse drags him through the countryside, Israel McKenna awakes bruised and

Overview

From the USA Today bestselling author of This Gun for Hire and one of today's “premier western romance writers,”* a captivating new Western historical romance . . .
 
WHAT HE DOESN’T KNOW . . .
 
After a horse drags him through the countryside, Israel McKenna awakes bruised and battered in a field in Pancake Valley, Colorado. He can recall where he came from and where he was going, but the memory of how he came to be on the Pancake homestead eludes him. He’s certain he did something wrong to deserve such a harsh punishment—and so is the beautiful woman who reluctantly comes to his aid.
 
. . . COULD HURT HER.
 
Wilhelmina “Willa” Pancake must focus on running her family’s ranch. With Israel’s hazy memory, she is unsure if she can trust him, let alone handle the budding attraction between them. And as men fight to steal her land and the truth about Israel’s past rides toward them, love is a risk she cannot easily take.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
03/28/2016
Goodman continues her winning streak of tender late 19th-century Western romances with good-natured but no-nonsense heroines and lovably roguish heroes who respect them. Willa Pancake’s spunky 10-year-old sister, Annalea, goes into the woods and finds injured Israel McKenna, the roguish brother of U.S. Marshal Quill McKenna (from This Gun for Hire). He seems to have been dragged by his horse, but doesn’t remember it clearly. He convinces Willa to take him in at the Pancake family ranch to recover. Willa’s eager to evade the marriage proposals of her onetime childhood sweetheart, Eli Barber, son of a family with which the Pancakes have a long-standing land feud. This leads Willa to propose to Israel, whose answer is encouraged by her father’s shotgun. The search for clues to Israel’s con-man past yields ample scenes of Willa and Israel carefully building mutual trust, while also offering the opportunity to add detail to the setting and to let secondary characters shine. Goodman’s narrative satisfies with emotionally resonant characters, playful dialogue, and a clever but not overly complex plot. Agent: Pam Hopkins, Hopkins Literary Associates. (May)
From the Publisher
“Wonderfully flawed individuals, unexpected plot twists, refreshing humor, and the appearance of folks from This Gun for Hire, as well as references to Goodman’s other earlier books, make this another of the author’s must-read historicals. Fans will be pleased.”—Library Journal

Praise for This Gun for Hire
 
“Goodman delivers a solid plot with engaging characters. There’s plenty of sexual tension, and from its rousing beginning to the powerful climax, there’s enough adventure to satisfy fans.”—*RT Book Reviews
 
“A perfectly crafted tale . . . Goodman balances the pair’s toughness and tenderness, independence and teamwork, and practicality and passion in a way that never lessens one in the service of the other; they become something greater together without ever compromising their individuality.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
 
“Danger, treachery, and clever subterfuge infuse this complex and multilayered story.”—Library Journal (starred review)
 
“This book I felt compelled to savor. I did not want it to end.”—All About Romance
 
 
Best Romance Books of 2011, Library Journal
#5 in the Top 100 Romances of All Time, Dear Author
A Top-10 Romance of 2009, Dear Author
Best Romance, All About Romance 2008 Annual Reader Poll

Library Journal
04/15/2016
Discovered on Pancake Valley ranch land by precocious, "nearly ten" Annalea, self-proclaimed "bad man" Israel McKenna, horribly battered, barely conscious, and missing his memory, is taken in by tough-minded rancher Willa Pancake. But the generational feud between the Pancakes and their unsavory neighbors, plus the growing attraction between Willa and Israel, take things in an unforeseen direction. These wary lovers acknowledge their pasts and settle a few outstanding scores. VERDICT Wonderfully flawed individuals, unexpected plot twists, refreshing humor, and the appearance of folks from This Gun for Hire, as well as references to Goodman's other earlier books, make this another of the author's must-read historicals. Fans will be pleased. Goodman lives in West Virginia.
Kirkus Reviews
2016-03-30
When a mysterious battered stranger is found on her land, a young woman rancher struggles to protect her heart—and a secret—from him. Goodman (The Last Renegade, 2012, etc.) draws us into the life of Wilhelmina "Willa" Pancake, who's running her alcoholic father's ranch and raising her precocious sister, Annalea, in 19th-century Colorado. When Annalea discovers an unconscious man on their property, Willa is wary but offers him sanctuary till he recovers. Israel McKenna soon remembers who he is but not why he ended up nearly beaten to death in an unfamiliar town. He decides to stay at Pancake Valley Ranch even after he heals, hoping to uncover his lost memories but also to get a read on Willa. She's not so sure he's revealing all that he remembers. Goodman's novel, with a romance plot that hints at Richard Nash's classic play The Rainmaker, is also enlivened by the interplay between Israel and Annalea, a pigtailed charmer. The ensemble cast of Willa's father, Shadrach "Happy" Pancake, and dog, John Henry, provides both humor and poignancy to complement the developing intimacy between her and Israel. The cloud on the horizon is both their pasts, with hers—a scheming rival rancher's son, her childhood love—finally intersecting with his. Characters from Goodman's This Gun for Hire (2015) also make an appearance as the novel goes from a startling revelation to an unexpected yet fitting climax. Readers of Western historical romance will enjoy the novel's deft blending of suspense, humor, and family drama.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780698180857
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/03/2016
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
128,671
File size:
1 MB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Jo Goodman is the USA Today bestselling author of numerous romance novels, including This Gun for Hire, In Want of a Wife, and True to the Law, and is also a fan of the happily ever after. When not writing, she is a licensed professional counselor working with children and families in West Virginia's Northern Panhandle.

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The Devil You Know 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story. Great characters. Annalea and John Henry make the story though. But Willa and McKenna are wonderful romantic characters. It was good to see Quinn and Calico again too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have loved all of Jo Goodman's books.She continues with making all of the background ,the people , the animals have the feel of the era she is writing in.Thank you Jo Goodman for not just hurrying through your books.They make it to my keeper shelf everytime.