Running Wild By Linda Howard

Free read í eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ñ Linda Howard

A steamy new contemporary Western romance by two blockbuster authors, a cowboy and a woman on the run take a stand and fight for love.
Carlin Reed lives in fear, off the grid, moving from place to place. So Battle Ridge, Wyoming, a small town in the middle of nowhere, seems like a good place to lie low for a while. But after becoming cook and housekeeper to cattle rancher Zeke Decker, Carlin suspects that she’s made her first mistake. Rugged, sexy, and too distracting for his own good, Zeke is pure temptation mixed with something deep and primal that makes Carlin feel almost safe. Soon things are getting way too hot in the kitchen.
Zeke doesn’t challenge Carlin’s terms: cash, dead bolts, and no questions. It is easy to see that she’s a woman in trouble. Problem is, he’s so blindsided by his attraction to her he can’t think straight. Zeke tries to stay all business, no complications—but that game plan is sabotaged the second Carlin gets under his skin. And when her terrifying past follows her to the ranch, Carlin faces a heartbreaking choice: run away from the man she loves, or put him in the crosshairs of a madman. Running Wild


Skimming and DNF.

I usually like Linda Howard’s books more than this. Her heroines are pretty smart and operate in the real world, and while the heroes are pretty hunky and are a few links up the evolutionary chain from Diana Palmer heroes,they always do something unforgivable that gets forgiven because the sex is good.

This seemed a little too cliched for me.

She’s in the run from a two date stalker and has learned how to stay under radar. She arrives in Podunk, WY and ends up as the H’s ranch housekeeper. I love this trope. Why? Because in reality the idea of cooking for a group of men on a large scale basis is no fun, but in Romanceland….? I don’t know.

Except she’s so strident. She pitches a fit because she overhears the H call her a “stray”. She goes on and on and on. FINE. Get over it. This goes on intermittently for two chapters

Plus she’s so overwhelmed with his manliness, how he commands the room, the pheromones..zzzzz Maybe because I was hearing this instead of reading it, but no thank you.

He thinks with his zipper. Surprise. Shallow ex-wife, a hint of mommy issues as she left the ranch after the dad died..Does this sound familiar?

Only the fact that he has fallen in love/lust with her rear-end, needs a cook to keep the cowboys happy and has enough dirty laundry to fill Dillards allows him to hire her.

He knows she's on the run and plots to get her in bed because of...her ass.

Sacrificial plot victim
Spencer is the sweet young man on the ranch that takes up the cooking before the h gets there. He’s sweet, thinks good of everyone, is good with animals. The first time he’s on page all I could think was he’s a goner.

Channeling the Law Abiding Citizen trope, the stalker is an ex-cop from South Texas and has the hacking computer skills of the CIA or a nerdy teenager. Perhaps layman are that tech savvy, but he should just work for Facebook and manipulate and destroy lives that way.

Guess I'll go listen to Harry Potter AGAIN. English
Carlin Reed is on the run from an obsessed stalker. She's tried reporting him to the authorities but without success. Afterall, who are they going to believe, her or her stalker, Constantly on the move, she ends up in Battle Ridge, Wyoming. Taking a job as a waitress for a time, she's ready to move on again, when an offer comes as a cook and housekeeper on a nearby ranch.

Zeke Decker really doesn't need the distractions of a young, single, attractive woman on his all-man ranch.

The fact of it was, nine dicks and one vagina together on one large slice of land just didn't work...

But he's desperate. His house is a mess and his men need a cook.

This is your standard woman-on-the-run, a romantic suspense staple. There's really nothing new here in the plot. But these ladies - Linda Howard and Linda Jones - sure can write an entertaining story. They're experienced hands at writing romances and it shows.

The pacing, plot, characterisations are all done well. The romance was thoroughly enjoyable, watching Zeke and Carlin fall for each other. Zeke is a man’s man and a hero I particularly like. He’s portrayed a little rough and tough, but realistically and without that overbearing and rather stupid alpha a-hole-ness that seems to be so dominating CRs at the moment.

The villain was your standard ex-boyfriend nutter and not quite as fleshed-out or convincing as he could have been. But it's the dialogue and the relationship between the protagonists that really makes this a very entertaining contemporary/romantic suspense.

The show-down at the end was particularly well-done. Aside from the fact I've probably read this storyline a hundred times before, there's nothing to really fault. Good, solid writing, plenty of humour, great dialogue and oh, recipes.

This is much more contemporary romance with suspense than a straight romantic suspense. (eg Shadow Woman by Linda Howard – her newest title, release date 1 January 2013, is romantic suspense.) For readers who enjoy contemporary westerns with manly cowboys and a healthy dose of suspense, this is a great read. And I'll be lining up for the next in the series.

Steam: 3

ARC courtesy of Random House via Edelweiss

4 Stars! Nice start to the series! Well done author collaboration!

I’ve never read anything by Linda Winstead Jones, so I can’t compare, but I was definitely getting the Linda Howard vibe in this book. Particularly with the snarky banter between H and h, where the attraction is undeniable, but they use sarcasm to keep each other at arm’s length. It was reminiscent her books, Mr. Perfect , Open Season and Heart of Fire, all of which I loved!

The prologue introduces us to the grumpy Zeke and then switches over to Carlin’s story and the suspense begins. Carlin finds herself on the run and ends up in the one-horse town of Battle Ridge, Wyoming. I enjoyed the small town setting and all the characters she meets, particularly Kat, Miss Sass and Spunk. Carlin finds employment and a place to hide at Kat’s diner, The Pie Hole, where she also has her first encounter and battle of wills with Zeke, who also happens to be Kat’s cousin.

Zeke and Carlin’s relationship is slow to build, no quick declarations of love, they dance around each other, and it was a dance I enjoyed watching. Their back and forth banter was witty, fun and had me chuckling numerous times. Zeke allows Carlin to dictate their relationship, he’s still an alpha male, but he respects her boundaries. I loved the men on the ranch, all but one of them, were charming, and fiercely protective of Carlin, even from their own boss. Sweet Spencer…so adorable…sperm collector and temporary cook…oh how I loved him. Patrick, quiet and polite, but they’re the ones who surprise us the most! These boys need books too!

The book is being promoted as steamy…hmmm, I would have to disagree. There’s some heat, but not full out sauna steam, more like the light haze over a hot cup of tea! It added to the romance, but there were so many other good things that drove the story.

The ending was quite riveting and had me on the edge of my seat! One spot of weakness, a lot less reflection and inner turmoil would have been better and more dialogue. I like getting into a character’s head, but I don’t want to spend too much time there.

If you’re a Linda Howard fan, I would say without a doubt you will enjoy this book. I’m sticking with the series, and if the ending was any indication of the couple that might be featured in the next installment, it’s going to be very interesting!

**ARC courtesy of Random House Publishing via NetGalley** English
_How can you forget anything? You have a damn list. Just check off each thing as you get it.

_Any idiot can get what's on a list. It's what ISN'T on the list that requires creativity.

I've been quoting that line every time hubby and I go grocery shopping since reading Running Wild, the surprisingly funny and satisfying, contemporary, cowboy romance with some suspense/action thrown in.

The heroine is escaping a psychotic stalker when she ends up in a small town and becomes the rancher hero's temporary housekeeper. I loved everything about their slowly building up relationship as well as so many humorous episodes depicting how the city girl tackles life on a ranch cleaning and cooking for a bunch of country boys.

The author managed to make trite things like trips to the grocery store, a disastrous recipe for cake, and a battle between a disgruntled cook and a dozen burned biscuits hilarious, laugh-out-loud moments. There were also some very tense episodes such as one of the ranch hands getting out of hand with the heroine and a catastrophic car accident during a merciless snow storm. And, of course, the tension and eventual consummation of the protagonists' attraction for each other was hot!

The weak part of the book for me was a cartoonish villain who I never felt posed a real threat. I don't even think it was necessary to have that plot contrivance in there, the book would have done just fine as a straightforward romance. Very enjoyable. Highly recommend. English 4 stars.⭐⭐⭐⭐
What can I say...this was not a particularly complicated or elaborate romantic suspense...but I really enjoyed reading this simple held my interest and I liked all the small details and the book's characters immensely.
Linda Howard...definitely has my number. I just love the feeling I get when I pick up one of her books...anticipation for a delightful journey ahead.😊 English

I do love me a sexy, protective cowboy, but Carlin was no slouch either. A girl who can fend for herself under dangerous circumstances and still manage to think rationally is the kind of heroine I can get behind!

The audio was really good. Maggie Wheeler sounded like a country girl with a little bit of sass and her male voices were done well, too. I upped the speed form 1.0x (normal speed) to 1.25x, just a little faster. English 3.75 stars, possibly 4. An enjoyable contemporary western romance, with some suspense. Quite a pleasant read, if a little disappointing. I loved the characters and the western setting, but there was not enough of that wonderful high-octane suspense I have grown to expect from Linda Howard. (I am not familiar with the co-author.)

This book also lacked Howard's famous sexy banter (see Mr. Perfect, for one example). It just didn't have ENOUGH of the earthy bold humor I love -- even though the heroine, Carlin Reed, was named after the comedian, George Carlin, and the authors tried to include fun repartee.

The suspense was a bit weak, the villain one-dimensional. I couldn't get too worried about Carlin's psychotic stalker (Brad), because I knew she was safely off the grid on the ranch, as the book synopsis indicates. I knew she'd be safe from Brad until something happened that would reveal her whereabouts. Also, she made Zeke promise not to hunt down Brad, and wouldn't even tell him Brad's last name.

So ... no offense + no defense = no suspense.

Without any real suspense for most of the book, what's left is a sweet story about big-hearted ranch hands (I liked the scenes of protectiveness and loyalty), good hot food (glad the hungry ranchers finally got something besides oatmeal and cheese toast), lessons in self-defense (I enjoyed these scenes), and Carlin's attempts to make white cake and biscuits (meh). There were also a few potentially life-threatening events, but they were all accidental.

Pacing was weak. I had a hard time staying with it in the long middle section. Too much focus on recipes, laundry, and house cleaning. I wish the book had been shorter. I forgive more of a shorter book.

The love affair with Zeke? Fine! It just didn't do a whole lot for me. Not sure why, exactly. He didn't want her there at first?? They didn't talk much ?? -- first SHE didn't talk to him, keeping him at bay, out of her kitchen, not even calling him by name. Then HE didn't talk much to her, not wanting to spook her, needing her to feel safe at his ranch (sweet) and not flee. Sometimes, it almost felt like he fell in love with her cooking, but only because the authors talked so much about food. Yes, there was some explicit sex, but there wasn't quite enough emotional sizzle. I liked the sizzling scene in his office!

One scene where Zeke really came across as a super-protective Howard hero is when he . And of course, Zeke was in alpha mode at the end, against Brad. But so was Carlin in top form at the end. A classic Howard kick-asp couple!

The truth is, I hold Howard to a higher standard than most. Blame it on her other heroes, like Jack, or Sam, or Grant, etc.

Bottom line: Good! Glad I read it. I plan to read the sequel.

(Content: A few explicit sex scenes -- short but sweet, some violence / murder, minimal or no religious profanity, but about 200 swear words (mostly damn, but also shi* and F or M-F) English ~Benimle Saklan~

Çok ama çok güzel bir çiftlik hikayesi okumuş bulunmaktayım. İçinde ne ararsanız vardı. Polisiye, gerilim,aşk, arkadaşlık, dram hatta ve hatta yemek tarifi bile vardı. Kurgusu öncellikle alışılmadık bir kurguydu ve bu durum inanılmaz insanı kendine çekti.

Özellikle Carlin'in sapığını şikayet etmesine rağmen sırf adam polis diye şikayetini kaale almamaları... Günümüzde kaç kadın bu durumdan mağdur oluyor artık sayamıyoruz bile! Sırf şikayet edilenin temiz bir hayatı var diye bu ihbarlarla bakılmıyor sonra o kadınlar, kadın cinayetlerine kurban gidiyor.

Günümüz böyle haberlerle doluyken kitap, buna dikkat çekerek farkındalık oluşturmak istemiş. Gerçekten de çok güzel yansıttı. Carlin'in ikilemleri, düşünceleri, kaçmak zorunda oluşu hepsini o kadar geçirdi ki bize insan bu duruma düşse Carlin kadar dayanıklı olabilir mi bilmiyorum. Jina'ya çok üzüldüm keşke sonu öyle olmasaydı😥

Aslında kitapta olan her şey o kadar birbirine bağlıydı ki, kızımız ilk Kat ile çalışıp onunla işlere yatkınlaşması sonra o çiftlik işi falan çok güzel bir geçiş olmuştu. Carlin ile Zeke ilişkisi de çok güzeldi bir anda aşka düşmediler zamanla yaşaya yaşaya aşık oldular birbirlerine be bu benim için çok önemli bir detaydı. Oldu bittiye gelmedi kitap. Her şey kademeli kademeli gelişti. İşçiler ile bile diyalogları zamanla samimileşti. Duygu ilerleyişi çok güzel yazılmıştı.

Ve çiftlik ortamları o kadar sıcak ve samimiydi ki insan orda olmak istiyordu. Zeke ise tam bir aksi kovboydu şimdi ise aksi bir koca olacak ama olsun Carlin yontar onu. Zaten daha aşçıyken kızımız, adamı kendi evinden kovuyor. Ve Zeke sonradan farkediyor bu olayı yani evden çıktıktan sonra znnsjs
Bir de Zeke'miz tuzlu kahve gibi beyaz pastaya mahkum kalıyordu yazık jzjsjs

Bu arada kızımız arı gibiydi bir orda bir burda sürekli iş yapıyordu insan okurken yoruluyordu. Sabahın 4.30'unda ayağa kalkıyordu ve ona rağmen çok enerjikti. Cidden insan düşününce vay be diyor 😂😂 Şimdi artık hayatı boyunca böyle olcak. Keşke sonda gelecekten birkaç yer yazsalardı. Çocukları falan olmuş çiftlikte köpekleriyle mutlu mesut bir akşam yemeği okumak çok ama çok hoşuma giderdi. Onun için 4.5'tan 5 alıyor kitap.
Kafa dağıtmaya ihtiyacınız varsa bu kitap derdinize bire bir okuyun muhakkak seveceksiniz. English This book was a good enough read but I don't think it's going to be a reread. I am fond of the woman on the run set up but somehow it wasn't all that interesting here. I think because her reaction seemed extreme for what had happened. Yes the other girl getting killed was bad but her running off the grid and always moving on would have made more sense if he was shown continually finding her. Because otherwise hunkering down on the ranch where there was little possibility that she would be found was the better option. Plus she knew an awful lot about Brad's computer abilities than I think she would have after just two dates. There was no tension here because until someone made a mistake you knew he couldn't find her so there was no sense of approaching danger.

The romance was okay, but slow and not very intense. There was not a lot of conflict in their relationship other than when she was going to give in and sleep with him. He didn't try very hard to win her just thought a lot that he would wait until she was ready. I almost felt like they didn't love each other. The scenes on the ranch were interesting but not enough seemed to happen to fill up a book this long.

I'll try the rest of the books in the series when they come out I guess. But I won't be holding my breath. English ★★★★✩ The audio is wonderfully narrated by Maggie Wheeler, and she certainly kicks it up a notch. Nothing terrible new here, but done so much better than when attempted by other authors. Also, I did really like one thrilling scene (you'll know where you get there). Very enjoyable - and satisfying! English