Friday, 18 January 2013
Montana Sky by Nora Roberts
Type: Adult Contemporary Romance
Source: Borrowed from library
When Jack Mercy died, he left a twenty million dollar ranch to his daughters on a single condition - they must all live on the ranch for one year. For Willa who was raised on the ranch this is an invasion of her home, while Lily sees it as a safe haven from her abusive ex-husband and L.A. girl Tess just wants to collect her cash and get back to the city. The sisters have never met before, let alone lived together but they must put their differences aside when it becomes clear that a brutal enemy is out to destroy Mercy Ranch and the women who live there.
This was my first ever Nora Roberts book and I picked it up after watching the TV movie. I'd enjoyed the film so much I wanted to know what the actual book was like. The book is a richer, more detailed storyline than the movie, althouth the movie did keep the main plotlines. Although I generally prefer to read the book before watching the movie, in this case I'm glad I saw the movie first as otherwise I would have missed certain scenes from the book (like when the sisters go to a spa) that were not included.
The book focuses on the three Mercy sisters - independent cowgirl Willa, fiesty screenwriter Tess and shy reserved Lily. Each is given their own backstory and plotlines with their own romantic interest. I loved how each woman was distinct and came to life on the page, and it was great to see how different each romance was. Willa has a love/hate attitude to neighbouring rancher Ben McKinnon, Tess wants a no-strings affair with lawyer Nate and Lily falls for Adam and ends up healing the scars of her past. Even the supporting characters are well written and developed, showing a great depth of character which makes them interesting to read.
The ranch setting was really interesting and differs from the film in that it goes a lot deeper into the workings of a ranch. While the movie made a ranch seem like an attractive place to live, this shows off the hard work involved with birthing calves and moving livestock. This feels like a more realistic take and the book also shows Ben and Nate's ranches and the differences in how they are managed.
The plot is well paced and there is tension threaded throughout by the threat of the killer and Lily's ex-husband. Those scenes are tense, creepy and at times very disturbing to read. Nora Roberts has done an outstanding job of getting inside the mind of an abusive partner and the ways he justifies his actions to himself are unsettling to say the least. The storyline is divided into seasons which shows the required year on the ranch well whilst giving some gorgeous descriptions of Montana.
All in all this was a great read and I'll definitely be reading more by Nora Roberts.