Fake Fiance, Real Revenge by Roxanne Snopek
This cowboy doesn't know what he's in for...
Real-estate tycoon Mitchell Granger has a problem. In order to secure a lucrative deal with an eccentric client, he told the teeny white lie that he was engaged…and now he needs to prove it. Even worse? The only name that came to mind was Sabrina Becker, the girl he was never good enough for growing up, and who still lives near his family ranch.
Sabrina doesn't mind posing as Mitch's fake fiancée—no, she doesn't mind at all. One, she'll make him pay with new construction for her business. And two, Sabrina's got a plan to exact revenge on her first love, the boy who left her and Three River Ranch behind. She'll pretend so well, he'll fall in love with her…and then he'll get a taste of what true heartbreak feels like.
But as Mitch sheds his corporate skin and picks up his dusty jeans and cowboy hat, will both his and Sabrina's grand plans get derailed by love?
About the Author
Roxanne Snopek is an award-winning Canadian freelance writer. Her articles and essays have been published widely, from local newspapers and national newspapers to magazines such as Woman's World and Reader's Digest. Her personal essays have traveled much farther than she has, and have been translated into over a dozen languages.
She's also the author of several non-fiction books, all centering on the human-animal bond. Although she's now focusing on fiction, her work always ends up with animals in it, somehow. She likes it that way.
Read an Excerpt
Fake Fiance, Real Revenge
A Three River Ranch Novel
By Roxanne Snopek, Stacy Abrams
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2013 Roxanne Snopek
All rights reserved.
The ultrarich were a monotonous lot, but they sure knew how to throw a party.
Mitchell Granger reached for another glass of champagne, feeling as if his face was about to crack, reminding himself that he was glad he wasn't like them.
They were pretentious. Predictable. Profoundly shallow.
He wasn't like them. Not at all.
Still, he hated feeling like an outsider. He was amazed that Della Fontaine hadn't noticed his discomfort, but then she'd been too busy leading him around by the nose, showing him off to her crowd of bejeweled and coiffed cronies. Plus, she assumed he wanted to be there, and people generally saw what they expected to see. Thank God she was thirty years older than he was.
Not that the age difference would bother her, Mitch thought with a shudder.
He glanced around the room. He should be mingling — that's what he was there for. But he'd never heard such inane conversation, such a waste of breath. If he heard one more exchange of "You look fabulous!" he might rip off his tux and hurl his drink at the oversize canvas wall-hanging people had repeatedly informed him was "an original."
An original what? It looked like someone threw up against the wall.
"So?" Della asked, jolting him out of his daydream. "You enjoying my little shindig?"
Della was from Detroit, Michigan, but her latest late husband had made his fortune in Texas oil, and she grabbed every opportunity to "sling a little West," as she called it. Her teeth-jarring and inconsistent accent was at complete odds with the cool, sleek mansion Mitch had built for her, but then, Mitch couldn't imagine the home that would suit her.
"Great," Mitch said. "Great shindig."
Della patted his cheek, her chins jiggling with the movement. "Liar! You hate this sort of thing. Bowing and scraping before people with more money than brains. Right now I imagine you're trying to come up with an excuse to leave."
Mitch looked away, willing his face not to react.
"Well, you can't go just yet," she said, a mischievous expression on her troll face. "I've got a surprise for you later."
He didn't think it was possible to get more depressed.
"Oh, don't worry, handsome. It's a good surprise. You'll love it."
"Really." Because their tastes were so aligned? He forced himself to smile.
"I'm going to make all your dreams come true." She waited for his reaction, but he'd gone still, afraid to hope. "Aren't you going to ask for details? Oh, hell! I've got a few more cheeks to not kiss. I don't even know why I invited half these people, but too late now."
His heart was beating so hard he could barely swallow.
"Don't worry, this crowd is used to hearing me say what I think. They can't afford to risk offending me and I confess, it's amusing as hell!"
He winced at her cackle, but the guests around her were carefully, deliberately oblivious. He tried to remember a single name, but between personal trainers, tanning beds, cosmetics and surgeons, one artfully beautiful matron was more or less interchangeable with the next. The men were hardly better; every hand he'd shaken tonight had been soft as a baby's. No calluses here.
That's what made Della Fontaine so fascinating in a must-stare-at-the-car-wreck sort of way. She didn't bother competing or pretending. She was an anomaly in this group, the richest of the rich, impervious to public opinion, able to speak and act and look and live exactly as she pleased, appropriate or not. Jabba the Hutt of Mercer Island.
And the thing about it was, if Della Fontaine decided to wear a tutu, tiny frothy skirts would suddenly be all the rage.
But she was canny enough to know that if she weren't wallowing in wealth, she'd be cut out of their circle so fast it'd send her tacky twenty-four-karat-gold tiara spinning. They didn't like her, but they couldn't afford to let it show.
Mitch would do anything for that kind of freedom. Well, he amended, remembering Della's predatory eye, almost anything.
"Welcome, darling," Della murmured again, leaning her powdered cheek toward that of yet another sorority sister. "It's been too long."
"You must tell me your secret, Della," said whoever she was. "You look fabulous."
And that did it. A crazed laugh rose in Mitch's throat, where it collided with a mouthful of champagne, sending it down the wrong pipe.
"Oh dear, Mitchell," Della said. She looked alarmed, but that might have just been the way she'd drawn on her eyebrows. She gave him a linen napkin. "Are you all right?"
He waved his hand and nodded, pointing to the vestibule.
"Of course, of course." She shooed him away. Della wouldn't want her pet to make a mess on the carpet, after all.
Mitch stumbled, coughing, through the vast and vaulted rooms until he came to the veranda overlooking Lake Washington. He leaned against the wide, curved stone wall and, his throat ready to function again, sucked in the sweet night air drifting in off the water.
Gradually, as he watched the stars come out and listened to the susurrations of waves, Mitch felt himself settle. He'd go back to Della's party, smile until his cheeks hurt, flirt as much as his stomach could handle, and finally, once he'd jumped through all her hoops, Della would reward him with the contract that would make Granger-Ellis the foremost property development company in the Pacific Northwest. His partner, Jon Ellis, was counting on him to land this deal.
Creating Della's to-be-determined destination resort would make Mitchell Granger — persona non grata in his hometown of Lutherton, Montana — the talk of the industry. They'd write about him in business magazines. Invitations to parties like this would flood in, and he'd be able to ignore them if he wanted. He'd have his pick of clients.
So for all that, he could handle a bit more of Della Fontaine, he assured himself. Reluctantly, he braced himself to reenter the phony cacophony.
"There's my boy!" Della called. She trundled to his side, reaching one beringed hand out to grasp his sleeve. "Mitchell! Come with me. I have someone I want you to meet!"
Mitch pasted a smile on his face and prepared for another hungry female.
Instead, he found himself looking down at a sweet-faced, golden-haired girl who looked as if she felt as under attack as he did. Her pupils were so wide, her blue eyes looked almost black, and her tremulous smile did not reach them. She looked twenty, maybe twenty-two.
"My stepdaughter, Paris." Della gave the girl a little shove. Paris stumbled against him as she took his hand.
"I'm so sorry — "
"Nice to meet — "
She blushed as she apologized, then swallowed, a blue vein pulsing visibly in her slender throat. This child was a baby bunny in the nest of a velociraptor.
"Isn't she lovely?" Della crowed, as if the girl wasn't there. "I think the two of you will hit it off. And why not? She's single, you're single. You'll thank me for this, Mitchell."
In the space of a second, three truths snapped into focus for Mitch. First, Della, stepmother and guardian of this shy young woman, intended for him to take Paris off her hands. Second, lovely as she was, Paris held zero appeal for him. None of these society women did and never would. And third, rejecting Della's stepdaughter would be career suicide.
After that, Mitch's brain clicked into autopilot, pure survival mode. He had no other explanation for his response.
"Paris," he said, lifting her hand to his lips. "I'm delighted to make your acquaintance."
"Me, too." The girl blushed again and shot an anxious look at Della.
"I've no doubt we will be friends," Mitch continued, then added a wistful smile for effect. "But I'm afraid anything more might be a problem for my fiancée."
* * *
The Birth on Earth Maternal Health Care Clinic of Lutherton, Montana, needed thicker walls, Sabrina Becker thought as she listened to the groans of the young woman in front of her. It was one thing to embrace natural childbirth in all its vivid reality; it was another to have the soundtrack playing on full volume for the wide-eyed prospective parents in the next room.
Then, out of the corner of her eye, she saw the young father's eyes roll back in his head.
She leaped to his side just in time to keep him from breaking his skull when he fell. "Oh no, you don't!" As it was, he'd have a goose egg to commemorate the birth of his first child. Well, she had no time to worry about him.
"Come on, Daddy, buck up. Mama needs you." Sabrina eased him into a sitting position on the floor, against the wall of the birthing room. "Press your forehead to your knees."
"I ... I'm okay," he mumbled.
"Of course you are." Sabrina gripped his chin gently, assessing his pallor and unfocused gaze, then pushed his face down again. "Stay here for a sec, okay? I'm kind of occupied at the moment."
Another cry from the mat on the floor. "I think my water just broke!"
Sabrina grabbed a towel. "Almost there now. You're doing fine, Jenny!"
She could remember the mom's name. But the dad's? Gone like self-control at an ice-cream bar.
Focus, Sabrina! You can sleep later!
Her assistant, Daphne, was wrapping up the prenatal class and then she could look after Dad. Until the next call, at least. Sabrina was thrilled that word of mouth was making her center the place to go for uncomplicated natural childbirth care. But she'd been up for two nights running now. She needed a nap. She needed more staff. And she needed more space.
She needed a fairy godmother.
The about-to-be-new-dad groaned from the floor. "Did I ... pass out?"
"Swooned like a medieval maid," Sabrina said. Surely he could manage to sit upright while his wife pushed out their child. "Come on, Daddy, coffee break's over. Hold her hand. Talk to her. Hey! Look at me! Can you handle it?"
He nodded, and then rolled onto his knees next to his wife.
"Oh God, I can't do this!" the mother-to-be cried. "Make it stop, Sabrina, make it stop!"
Transition, she thought. "Almost there now, honey. Breathe!"
The baby's presentation was putting pressure on the mother's sciatic nerve, and the only way she could get relief was to labor on all fours, on a yoga mat. Fortunately, Sabrina was set up for every possibility. If women wanted a water birth, she had a tub. If they wanted to labor in a Jacuzzi, they could. She had a birthing ball, an open-seated chair, a pole. She had music, candles, and massage oil. She had sterile instruments, monitoring equipment, and adjustable beds.
But only two birthing rooms.
What she needed was more ... of everything.
The man's eyes started spiraling again.
"Daphne!" Sabrina yelled. "Dad's losing it here."
Brad! That was his name.
"Jenny wants Brad to cut the cord," she said as Daphne jogged into the room. "If he passed out at this, he ain't gonna like what's coming."
Every midwife in the history of the universe knew that in the ultimate deciding match in the battle of the sexes, the hands that rocked the cradle really did rule the world.
Jenny moaned, moving back and forth slightly on her knees. Sabrina checked her again — almost time now. The woman had been laboring since the previous evening and they were all exhausted.
"You're fully dilated, honey. You'll feel the urge to push any time."
With that came the next contraction and a roaring grunt from the floor.
"What are you doing to her?" Brad stood up, then wavered, all the color leaching from his face as he watched his wife bearing down.
"Down, boy," Daphne said, pushing him back onto his knees. "Stay."
No matter how many classes they went through on labor and birth, Sabrina thought as she slipped her gloved hands between the woman's thighs, they were still shocked by the reality.
The baby's head emerged, a thatch of black hair, followed by a tiny, scrunched-up face.
The sight, as always, gave Sabrina a jolt of joy so pure and crisp that she felt her throat catch. Birth was primitive, earthy — but it remained the single most awe-inspiring experience of her life, no matter how many she attended. It also remained the greatest desire of her heart.
And her greatest fear.
Her one short-lived pregnancy had ended in sorrow she'd had to bear completely alone, thanks to the jerk who'd abandoned her. Didn't matter what extenuating circumstances he might claim: Mitchell Granger had left her when she'd needed him most. And if she ever got the chance —
"Aaah ... ," Jenny moaned. "It's coming! It's coming!"
"Dad! Hey!" Sabrina barked, gesturing with her chin. "Look alive! You're going to be the first face your child sees."
"I ... am?" he said, looking at her in alarm.
"You are," she confirmed. "But not if you're out cold."
"Is ... everything ... okay?" the woman gasped. The next wave hit and she bore down again with a great cry.
"Everything is just fine." Sabrina slipped her finger into the infant's mouth, sweeping it free of mucus. She cradled the slippery head with a sterile huck towel, easing out one shoulder, then the other. "Say hello to Daddy, little one!"
"Oh ... my God ... ," the father murmured. But to Sabrina's relief, he'd finally snapped to attention.
"Here we come, baby love," she crooned as the mother gave one last great push. The rest of the child slid out into the warm towel, still attached with the purple twisted cord. "Welcome to the world, sweetheart!"
Jenny, shaking with fatigue, collapsed onto the mat. "Is everything okay?"
"Baby is just great, Mom." Sabrina quickly checked the infant, swaddled him in another dry towel, and handed him to his father. Then she turned to the new mother, wrapping her with warm blankets, plumping up cushions and bedding to bring the most comfort.
"Lie back, okay? I'm going to put your son on your chest."
Brad still looked shell-shocked, but his color was fine, and he held the baby with firm arms.
Sabrina directed the young man to lay his newborn son on his wife's naked body, and together, they watched the infant crawl and creep and nuzzle his way to his mother's breast.
"It's amazing, isn't it?" Jenny said, laughing and crying at the same time. "I mean, you showed us videos, but — "
"I know." Sabrina swallowed.
"I love you so much, Jenny," Brad said in a choked voice.
"I love you, too." Tears ran freely down Jenny's face. "We're a family now!"
Sabrina's throat clenched. Usually she celebrated with her clients. But today, maybe because she'd been thinking about Mitch, she couldn't watch.
"I'll, uh, give you three some privacy." And she dashed to the washroom to pull herself together.
The only thing Sabrina Becker wanted as much as a baby was to find Mitchell Granger and hurt him, the way he'd hurt her.
Maybe then that Mitch-shaped scar on her heart would finally heal.
* * *
Conversation in the room ebbed, as it always seemed to do at the absolute worst moments. All heads turned to Della, who stood blinking in confusion.
Paris looked as if she wanted to disappear.
Finally Della clapped him on the shoulder. "You're a dark horse, aren't you, Mitchell Granger? Keeping this under wraps? And here I've been thinking of what lovely babies you and Paris would make. Where've you been hiding this girl? You should have brought her tonight!"
"She's ..." His relief vanished. He had to make this convincing. "She's in Montana."
Really, Mitch? Way to limit your pool of possibilities. A fiancée in Fiji. Now that would have been convenient. And difficult to disprove.
Where, he wondered, would one go about finding a mail-order bride? Was there even still such a thing?
"Ah, yes, your hometown. Lutherton, is it?"
He should have expected Della to look him up. He hadn't offered many details about his past, but that wouldn't stop a woman like her. Memories flooded in, wounds he'd long ago vanquished — or thought he had.
You see, Mitch? You did it again. Another stupid, impulsive idea. He hadn't heard that voice for years. Perspiration broke out on his back. You don't stop to think and this is what you get. Stupid, stupid boy.
"We're, uh." Mitch swallowed, wiping the back of his neck. He wasn't that boy anymore. He was a success. Supported by his non-Fijian fiancée. Who had no name. "We're taking it slow."
Excerpted from Fake Fiance, Real Revenge by Roxanne Snopek, Stacy Abrams. Copyright © 2013 Roxanne Snopek. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This is a fabulous story showing us that it is possible to go home again. We finally get to know Mitch and all his reasons for leaving! It's wonderfully written with all the great quirky characters we've come to love. Highly recommended read.
I was offered an ARC of this book by Entangled in exchange for an honest review which was great for me since I was stalking the authors page looking for release date updates. Once I start a series, I read all of them. I originally ignored Amazon's recommendation of Three River Ranch. It wasn't until His Reluctant Rancher popped up on the list that I took notice. My O.C.D. made me start with the first book and I've been hooked since although you could read this as a stand alone. The book starts out with Mitchell Granger, the brother of Carson Granger in book 1. In Three River Ranch Mitchell was vaguely mentioned as the brother who left town. You don't get any info other than that the brothers aren't close at all. Mitchell left long ago to make something of himself so he could show everyone in town. He's done it, but still isn't happy. While trying to win a contract from an old rich lady, he gets the feeling that she's attempting to make a match with him and her step-daughter by telling her he's off the market. Sabrina, who was the first woman Mitchell could think of, was still living in the town that Mitchell left. She was Rory's midwife in The River Ranch. She runs a birthing center in need of many upgrades. She see's Mitchell's proposition as the key to getting the upgrades and a little revenge for his leaving her so many years ago. Out of the 3 books so far, I think this one was the best. To me, this book went much deeper than the previous two. There were so many different layers to it with all the side characters and each other their intertwined stories. Now it looks like I'll be back to stalking the author's website to find out about the next book in the series "The Forbidden Rancher".
Loved this story a lot, I would recommend the entire series
In Fake Fiancé, Real Revenge by Roxanne Snopek, Mitchell Granger has come a long way from the boy not good enough he used to be growing up, now he is a real-estate tycoon. But he has run into a glitch, when an eccentric client wants him to date her stepdaughter he told her a teeny white lie. That he was engaged and the only name that came to mind was Sabrina Becker the girl he was never good enough for no matter how much he loved her. Sabrina doesn’t mind posing as Mitch’s fake fiancé, not only because he will pay for the construction of the changes she needs in her clinic, but also because she has never forgiven him for leaving her and now she has her chance at revenge. She wants him to feel the heartbreak she felt when he left her behind and for that she will make him fall in love and then break his heart. But life doesn’t always go as planned as both Mitch and Sabrina will discover soon enough. The chemistry they had never died and the attraction is inevitable. Not only that, their conscience will not be silent when their heart knows what really is worth fighting for and what should be left behind and the decisions they thought were for the best will be put to the test between having true love and family or having revenge and success. If you read the previous books by Roxanne Snopek you may have seen Sabrina and Mitch for a little while when Rory organized her party and invited Mitch, Carson’s brother, back to Three River Ranch after a long time away. I know I wondered why he was so apart from the rest of the town and his family, and thankfully in this book we get to know the truth behind Mitch’s story and why he left his hometown. This is another great book by Roxanne Snopek and I truly recommend it. It is fun, entertaining and sweet, it will break your heart and it will make you smile with the actions of these two broken souls that can only make each other complete.
I am such a sucker for the sweet romance that can be found in any Bliss book. Fake Fiancé, Real Revenge did not disappoint me in the slightest. I just love a good romance, especially if a cowboy is involved. However, this is book #3 in the Three River Ranch series, but it works well as a standalone. I do wish I would have read the first two beforehand, but now I plan on going back and reading all three of the Three River Ranch books. This book was so easy to get lost in and forget how late it was, which happened to me both nights I curled up in bed with it. I can honestly say now that after finishing it, I really want more of Mitch and Sabrina. I just loved them and could feel their chemistry throughout the book. There were times where Mitch ticked me off, but I was quickly reminded that he had some difficulties growing up and he was learning and growing from those experiences. It was real obvious how much he cared for his friends and family and especially Sabrina. As for Sabrina, she just screamed sweetheart and it was evident how crazy she was for Mitch after all these years. I loved that they were able to grow together and overcome some difficult times that they have abandoned and tried to forget. This whole book was just fun loving and romantic. I love to read these books because they are quick, easy, and so so romantic. If you haven’t read a Bliss book yet, you need to! There are so many great ones and this one is definitely one of them!
You can take the man out of the ranch, but never the ranch out of the man. Lutherton is one of my favourite places on literary earth. Our third outing to the ranch has all the characters we love plus new ones, a captivating storyline, humour, touching moments, romance and drama. It's a wonderful addition to the series. Mitchell Granger, ahhhh Mitch (that's my appreciative sigh). I feel I have cheated on Carson and Zach. The man is like an easter egg; crack through the exterior and you discover the hidden treats. Sexy, stubborn, defensive, witty and proof that foot and mouth isn't just limited to the animal variety, he's also vulnerable and a ranch-outsider having fled 10 years previously. Sabrina, who we met in the first book, is Rory's fabulous flirty and funny best-friend, with an absolute heart of gold that remains secretly shattered after her childhood sweetheart abandoned her. So, two ex-lovers, one month and one lie to benefit both sides. Redemption or revenge? I loved every page (except the last one; didn't want it to end). I laughed, I swooned, I fell utterly in love and my heartstrings were well and truly pulled. In fact tears threatened. With plenty of emotion, banter, flirting and sexual tension, there was never a dull moment and this is my favourite book so far. Would I recommend? Without a doubt, it deserves every star and I can't wait for #4. I received a copy of this book as an ARC from the publisher for an honest and unbiased opinion
I liked the idea and the characters but for me it was missing something. I thought the story jumped a little, I had to go back and read the previous page to see if I missed something and I didn't the book jumped over the scene . The book could have been better .
Love a tortured cowboy!
1.5 stars. I really enjoyed The 3 River Ranch. This novella (162 pages ) was boring. The characters thoughts were reppetitive. We were constantly reminded that Mitch felt like an outsider. The dialogue was stale & contrived. This short story seemed like it was hastily put together. This should have been offered as a free book. Glad I only spent $ 2.99. An honest review.
I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about this book with reading the blurb. I will say that I was pleasantly and happily surprised that I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I liked it so much that I got the first two and I'm pretty excited for the fourth one to come out. I found myself laughing at a lot of scenes throughout this book. This story starts out with Mitch trying to attain a new client; Della Fontaine. And let me tell you Della is a snarky sneaky and crazy speaks her mind kind of "old" woman. She cracks me up for most of the book. However, if Mitch lands this job for her then it opens his company up to new clients and sets him up for life. So the deal is pretty HUGE. Della tries to hook Mitch up with her step-daughter Paris, so instead of seeing her for the night or somehow being polite about the whole situation, what does Mitch do? Oh, it's very nice to meet you and I'd love to take you out sometime, however I'm engaged. Ohhh and not just to any girl, ohhh no, he says that he's engaged to Sabrina, his ex-girlfriend from way back when who he pretty much left when he left home. And of course Della can't leave things alone....so ohhh let's go meet the woman your engaged to. YEY road trip.....or flight trip. Ohhh and did I mention that Mitch and his brother aren't exactly on the best of terms so this should be a great return trip home. Mitch makes sure when he gets back he talks to Sabrina about what slip of the tongue happened and pretty much bribes her. If she will help him pull this off he will help with her business/clinic and help expand it, which she truly needs funds for. For Sabrina she is all for this idea because she wants to get revenge on Mitch for breaking her heart all those years ago and of course the famous "Stupid Y chromosome". So Mitch and Sabrina begin this "fake engagement" and I find the whole situation comical because both Mitch and Sabrina still have feelings for each other. And Sabrina plays her role up amazingly....almost too amazingly. Add Della to the mix and awkwardness and funny odd sharings begin. However, the best part of this whole relationship is when Mitch tells Bliss (who is like a mother to him and has been on the ranch for forever). Bliss is a woman to be reckoned with. She reminds me of my grandmother and one of those women who do not put up with crap and see right into your soul the to heart of things and ohhh they know when you're lying. One quote that stuck out to me that Bliss told Mitch was, "If I see that girl shed one single tear because of you, a plague of biblical proportions will descend upon your head." See not someone you want to mess with. And of course watching Mitch interact with his brother Carson is.....interesting. These two really kind of struggle with a relationship and if it wasn't for Carson's wife Rory they may not even have the struggling relationship that they have. I love that Carson is completely involved with saving Mustangs and rescuing them. The horses part of this book is really amazing and I love it!!! This book just makes me want to pick up and move out west and start over at a ranch and meet me some real authentic kind of cowboy and fall happily in love. Another memorable moment is when Sabrina is helping a mother give birth to her baby and Mitch happens to drop by and ahhh poor dad isn't doing all that well with the birth. "What's happening?" the father said, blinking. "Looks like you're having a baby, Dan Gardener." Mitch punched him in the shoulder. "Congratulations! Now, on your feet soldier. Your woman needs you." heheh I find this funny. Anyways back to Mitch and Sabrina. So these two pull off being a couple quite well, so well in fact that the two of them are confused about whats real and what's fake. And that is what the book answers for the reader. Will Mitch and Sabrina actually become a couple? This book truly is a great short romantic weekend read. I definitely recommend this book.
These small town romances from Entangled Publishing's Bliss line are really starting to grow on me with each one I read. Roxanne Snopek's Three River Ranch novel was another delightful read from that line. We are first introduced to Mitch because it is ultimately his decision that serves as the catalyst for this story. At first glance, he's a successful businessman who has everything he could possibly want or need. But a little white lie backfires on him, leading him right back to the one woman who knew all about his humble beginnings. I really liked Sabrina, although I did have a bit of a love/dislike relationship with her throughout the story. When she wasn't thinking about her plan for revenge, she was actually a really nice and compassionate individual. At first I was on board with her plan for a little payback on Mitch, but that quickly changed as soon as his history was revealed. She knew just how difficult his childhood had been between his father and his dyslexia. Even she acknowledged that they were too young to have dealt with things maturely. So when she had thoughts of feeling a little sorry for him one minute only to emphasize her need for revenge the next, she came across as...the bad guy. I think the revenge plan would have worked for me had she not been the kind person at heart as she was portrayed, or perhaps if Mitch hadn't had so many tough issues in his past that just screamed for sympathy. Mitch was such a sweet character. He perceived himself as a loser back in the day, and he seemed to think the rest of the town saw him the same way. He wanted to be a success not just for himself but because he felt he had something to prove. I liked his character arc which exposed his vulnerabilities and insecurities, but he overcame them with support from his family and Sabrina. I enjoyed this story a lot. Neither the story nor their connection felt rushed because of their history. Even though I didn't buy every nuance of Sabrina's character, I liked that she didn't approach Mitch with snark or animosity. With the added years of maturity under their belts, I liked their relationship in the present more than their past one. It was well written and the dialogue flowed naturally. I would definitely read more stories by this author. Disclaimer: I received an ARC from the publisher for the purpose of an honest review.
Reviewed by Kim for Read Your Writes Book Reviews I have to admit I was really looking forward to reading this book. I’ve LOVED the Three River Ranch series so far. Unfortunately, I didn’t fall in love with these characters like I did in the other books. But with that being said, Fake Fiance, Real Revenge was a good read. While you don’t have to read the other two books in this series, if you have, then you are definitely in for a treat because the two previous couples are mentioned a lot and Bliss is around to just make you laugh and pass out wisdom. Mitchell Granger is the oldest brother of Carson Granger, the hero from Three River Ranch. Sabrina Becker is the town mid-wife and best friend of Rory Granger, Carson’s wife. Mitch and Sabrina share a history together. They were highschool sweethearts. Mitch had a rough time at home after the death of his mother. He had issues with school and acted out a lot. Sabrina was the “good girl”. She saw who Mitch was beyond all of his issues. Feeling trapped by his father’s hard handedness and feelings of not being good enough, Mitch was anxious to leave town. Sabrina, not wanting to make Mitch feel as if she was tying him down, gave him his walking papers that he was more than willing to take. Now ten years later, Mitch is a success in his own right, though he still sees himself as not being good enough. Mitch is on the verge of making a deal of a lifetime that will put his company on the map more than it already is. The only problem is that his client, Della Fontaine wants to set him up with her twenty-year-old daughter. Thinking fast on his feet, Mitch tells Della that he’s engaged and the first name that pops out of his mouth is Sabrina. Now, Della wants to visit Mitch’s hometown of Lutherton, Montana and meet his fiance. Mitch and Sabrina come to an agreement that she will pretend to be his fiance in exchange for him expanding her medical facility. Unbeknownst to Mitch, Sabrina has a plan to make him fall in love with her so she can rip his heart out just like he did hers ten years previously. The only problem is...it seems these two have some unresolved feelings for each other. Sabrina is a woman who tries to be tough but she isn’t. Immediately upon seeing Mitch, she’s fighting a losing battle. She has her demons that she wants to blame on Mitch. Some that he really doesn’t know anything about. I loved that Mitch is such a good guy and he doesn’t even see it. Over the course of this book, not only does he heal his relationship with Carson but he also learns that the only person keeping him away from Three Rivers Ranch and his hometown is him. When the chips are down, Mitch pulls out all the stops to make things right. There are a couple of things I love about Roxanne and her books.. 1) The humor and dialogue she puts into her books and 2) Even when I’m not totally and completely connecting with the characters, she manages to still grip me and make me want to read the story. This is truly a story of what second chances and forgiveness is all about. Source: Publisher
Fake Fiance, Real Revenge is the third book in the Three River Ranch Novel series by Roxanne Snoper. This was a wonderful story about lost loves and second chances. The heart of this story is about Mitchell Granger and his former high school girlfriend Sabrina Becker. Mitchell broke Sabrina's heart and abandoned her when she needed him most. Ten years later he is needing Sabrina to help him seal an ultimate business deal and she is more than willing to help and in turn get some good old fashioned revenge. Along the way, the realize there was more to their story and their feelings for each so many years ago and maybe what they were both hoping to gain by this new arrangement isn't exactly what their hearts want. I really enjoyed this uplifting, easy to read romance. The other characters help to build the story and the relationship for Mitchell and Sabrina. What I loved about this story was that it seemed real. I felt Sabrina's pain and I appreciated Mitchell's desire to be successful in other's eyes. While this book is part of a series, I believe it could easily be read as a stand alone. I never read the first two books prior to reading Fake Fiance but I do believe I may have connected even more with the story if I had read them. As a new Roxanne Snoper fan, Three River Ranch and His Reluctant Rancher are definitely on my TBR list.