Reviewed by Sarina
TITLE: Hooves and Horns
AUTHOR: Eden Winters
PUBLISHER: Rocky Ridge Books
LENGTH: 35 pages
RELEASE DATE: October 25, 2017
This story originally appeared in the Butt Riders on the Range anthology.
If bulls#*t could kill….
Professional rodeo rider Kerry Abrams is fed up with bulls#*t. Literally. If the bullshifter herd thinks a lowly mustang ain’t good enough for one of theirs? Good riddance. And good riddance to the too-hot-for-his-own-good, arrogant son of a cow who broke his heart and left him with one less thing to look forward to during rodeo season. He doesn’t miss Armando Castillo at all! Ever! Okay, maybe some. Or every minute of every day.
Why does Armando’s herd have to meddle in his love life? He had the man he wanted, and if that man happens to spend part of his time with hooves and a mane, munching apples beneath a full moon while Armando wears horns, Armando will happily plant Kerry a whole orchard.
Kerry and Armando may be rodeo stars—both in human and animal forms—but the ex-lovers’ rivalry is even more legendary than their riding skills. Armando plans to win his man back. What’s the use of all those silver belt buckles if he doesn’t intend to use ‘em?
This was a fun little read; Armando and Kerry went their separate ways after a misunderstanding proved to be the last straw on an already difficult relationship. Determined to get his man back, Armando arranges to ‘run into’ his ex at a rodeo competition but Kerry is still upset, and still quite peeved, so things don’t go as smoothly as Armando had been hoping. What I really liked about this story was that you don’t just have the main characters riding in the rodeo but also being ridden in their shifted forms so there was an added element to the story. This also allowed for some interesting interactions as each man needled at the other when they didn’t have the ability to do or say anything about it. (I personally found this amusing.)
While there isn’t a great deal of information given about the two men’s previous relationship, enough is given to get a good picture of what happened in the past. Based on what I read, I found the world interesting enough and wish I could’ve gotten a chance to see Kerry and Armando together either before or after their reunion at the rodeo. Both men worked for me and I liked the chemistry between them; my only complaint is that, as usual, I just wanted more! Overall I found this to be a funny, enjoyable read that was a great way to spend a little spare time in between doing other things. If you enjoy cowboys and/or shifter stories, this was a good blending of the two and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.