“Reviewed by Kim
“Reviewed by Kim
for Read Your Writes Book Reviews
Legend has it, William Frances Cates, great-grandfather of Brant Cates, was shot and killed by Sheriff Murdock over a hundred years ago. The shooting was the result of a dispute relating to a dedication plaque for the town of Bramble. The legend goes on to state that the dispute was about money. William was commissioned to make a plaque for the town hall. The building of the town hall fell behind schedule, thus the plaque William presented had the date the town hall was supposed to be completed, not the date it was actually completed. Since the date was wrong, the town didn’t want to pay. To make matters worse, William’s body was never returned to his family. However, over the course of generations, William’s death turned into the Cates' family curse, which included several deaths.
Branston William Cates is now the oldest of the Cates children. He has it set in his mind that there is a curse on his family. The true oldest child, Buckley, died as a teenager, trying to outrun a train. Brant’s wife Mandy and young son, B.J., were killed in a tornado. And his younger brother, Beau, who is probably in his twenties is a cancer survivor. We first heard of Brant, President of C-Corp, a large family owned oil and gas company, in book three of the series, Catch Me a Cowboy. In that book, C-Corp had just purchased Dalton Oil, one of the largest employers in Bramble, with the intention of closing it down and ruining the town, revenge for killing William Cates.
Elizabeth Murphy is the prim and proper librarian of Bramble. She’s a thirty-seven year old woman, who many consider to be an old-maid. She is strictly business and her clothes show it. Well, maybe not. Her clothes are probably what a seventy-year-old uptight school teacher would wear, if she wasn’t into the latest styles and fashion. Picture hair pulled back into a SUPER tight bun, glasses, and Miss Hathaway from The Beverly Hillbillies. She lives alone with her cat, Atticus. Oh, I forgot to mention she’s never been with a man before.
This is probably the best book in the series. I don’t know what it is about this book, but I love it. Brant and Elizabeth are two people you wouldn’t dream of putting together, but they work. It probably has something to do with the “hens”. The “hens” are a couple of women who use to live and work at Miss Hattie’s Henhouse, just outside of Bramble. In case you haven’t figured it out, the henhouse is a place where a lot of X-rated activity occurred. Or maybe not.
Appearances and perceptions are not always as they appear. The henhouse isn’t totally what you think it is. Brant isn’t anything like the guy he appeared to be in Catch Me a Cowboy. Elizabeth isn’t the quiet, let everyone push her around, not standing up for herself woman.
In Trouble with Texas, Elizabeth is contacted by a lawyer and told her grandmother, a woman she has never met, has left her the henhouse. Miss Hattie’s Henhouse was at one point in time a beautiful place. In fact, it still houses a library any booklover could only dream of being able to step into; and enough antiques to make the host of Antiques Roadshow salivate. But it’s also rundown and in desperate need of repairs. Not only did Elizabeth inherit the house, but she also inherited the three women currently living there. Minnie, the head hen, Sunshine, and Baby don’t want to leave and have some plans of their own.
The story starts out with Brant driving to Bramble to attend the wedding of his brother Billy and Sharlene. On the way to the wedding, he decides to stop at Miss Hattie’s and see if he can find out some information about his great-grandfather. Well, one thing leads to another, and Minnie shoots Brant and then the other hens drug him and handcuff him to a bed. This is only the start of the laughable moments for this book.
I'm all about the journey writers take readers on to get to happy endings. Katie Lane did a wonderful job of taking us on the journey of Elizabeth and Brant towards their HEA. We're able to find out more about Elizabeth and her background. We're also able to get to the bottom of the Cates curse and find out what actually happened to William Frances Cates.
Trouble in Texas is full of surprises and twists. I can't wait to find out what Ms. Lane has in store for us in book five, Flirting with Texas, featuring Beau Cates and Jenna Jay Scroggs.
“Reviewed by Guest Reviewer/Helen & posted at Under the Covers Book Blog
“This is not my first visit to Bramble, Texas and I guarantee, it won’t be my last!” ~Under the Covers
Elizabeth Murphy, an uptight librarian, is known as the old maid of Bramble, Texas. She is also the secret and reluctant owner of the rundown Miss Hattie’s Henhouse—the most famous whorehouse in the state. Closed off and repressed, Elizabeth spends her days hiding behind shelves of books and frumpy clothes. And even though she is only thirty seven, she is more than happy with her loveless and boring life. Her mother had convinced her that men are a waste of time.
Until she gets a call from one of the old hens, the nickname for the ladies who once worked for
said house of ill repute and is still living at Miss Hattie’s. Told it’s an emergency, Elizabeth
rushes out to Miss Hattie’s. Where she finds the hens have chained a naked and wounded man to Miss Hattie’s bed.
The man happens to be Branston Cates. Branston who is Obsessed with the Cates Curse and
solving his great-granddaddy’s murder so he can free the family of the curse, Brant showed up
at Miss Hattie’s hoping to find answers. What he finds instead are three little old ladies, one of whom is holding a loaded gun. After an unfortunate coughing fit, Brant finds himself shot, drugged, and then handcuffed to a bed.
Brantson Cates is a man who has known loss and heartache and loves his family greatly. But
he can also be cold and calculating even Ruthless. And after an unexpected encounter with
Elizabeth, while he was cuffed and not in his right mind, the librarian finds herself on his bad side, Which, I must say, is not an entirely bad side to be on.
Elizabeth and Brant were such a hoot. I love the way that Elizabeth sweeps into Brant’s life and
riles him up. It’s funny and heartwarming watching these two bicker like an old married couple.
And, yeah, I also love that it led to some seriously hot and sexy times.
Henhouse Rule #27: An angry co ck is better than a passive one.
And we can’t forget the old hens themselves—Minnie, Baby, and Sunshine. The old gals might
have scared me out at first, but they wear on you and have you laughing right along with their
outrageous antics. Who wouldn’t adore three crazy old ladies who spend their days in lingerie
and have a penchant for chain-smoking and match-making? They warmed my heart something
This is not my first visit to Bramble, Texas and I guarantee, it won’t be my last!
Which didn’t explain why Brant remained outside with Elizabeth, even when he started to suffer
from heatstroke. Or maybe heatstroke was only the excuse he used for what happened next. With
one eye pinned on Elizabeth, he stripped off his shirt, something he rarely did, and proceeded to
perform feats of strength. He moved large rocks for no good reason, grunting as if he were leg-
pressing a good five hundred pounds. He welded hedge clippers like Edward Scissorhands. And
hoed like a lumberjack bent on clearing the Sierras.
It was heatstroke. It had to be. There was no other way to explain a thirty-eight-year-old man
flexing and posing for a woman like some goddamned body builder in a competition.
And the worst part about it was she didn’t even pay him the slightest bit of attention.
*ARC provided by publisher
“Author Katie Lane has fast become one of my favorite authors to read. Her Deep in the Heart of Texas series is one of the best cowboy/ small town series out there and her latest book Trouble in Texas is just an enjoyable story to read.
Elizabeth Murphy is the quintessential prim and proper small town librarian. She doesn’t want the town to know of her family’s sordid past – that is is related to women who used to work at the local ‘hen house’. In fact she owns and is looking after the elderly hens that still call it home.
Brant Cates has been seeking revenge for his grandfather’s death. Now that his brothers won’t let him accomplish that he heads into town to watch one of them get married. Before he gets there he makes a stop at Miss Hattie’s, one of the places his deceased grandfather was said to have been. The next thing he knows he is naked and handcuffed to a bed!
I have to say I love how well the plot moves with this old murder mystery and the romance between Brant and Elizabeth. It was nice to see Brant was mostly over his deseeded wife enough that she did not come in-between him and Elizabeth.
I would recommend this book as well as the entire series to anyone who loves a good cowboy romance.
“Trouble in Texas by Katie Lane is the fourth book in her Deep in the Heart of Texas Series. I have to admit that I haven’t read any of the previous books in the series, but that doesn’t matter, you can read this book on its own.
Brant Cates is on his way to attend his brother’s wedding, but he decides to take a side stop at the famous Henhouse, believing it’s abandoned. But some of the old hens are still living in the Henhouse and they don’t like strangers on their land. The story goes that Brant’s great-grandfather was killed there during one of his visits. He believes that the murder of his great-grandfather sparkled the “Cates Curse “. Never in a million years could he imagine getting shot, then drugged and kept captive by the three old hens in order to stop him from reporting them to the police.
Elizabeth Murphy works in the local library as the head librarian and is also the owner of the “Miss Hattie’s Henhouse”. Lizzie was raised by only by her mother and was taught that men were all “scumbags”, but that never stopped Lizzie from reading her beloved romance novels. She wants to sell the Henhouse, but the three little old hens who still love there won’t let her. Their plan is to re-opening the Henhouse in the old glory and they might have a plan to just to that.
I loved Brant and Lizzie together; from their first meeting you can sense the huge attraction between them. Yes, they are definitely the opposite of each other, but that won’t stop chemistry between them. And of course with a little help of the three old hens, they never stand a chance against fate and love.
Katie Lane has written a great romance novel with a fabulous storyline, great characters and a terrific mystery to solve. I just loved reading this light read, I have read one other novel by this author and I’m definitely going to check out the others. I know I will have a great time reading them.”
“Brant Crates is searching for answers to what happened to his great-granddaddy; however he doesn’t expect to run into three old ladies who leave him drugged and tied to a bed. Elizabeth Murphy has just inherited Miss Hattie’s Henhouse, for an uptight and proper librarian all she wants to do is get rid of it one day she finds a man tied to a bed and soon her life takes an unexpected twist.
When I first started this book I kept getting angry, let me explain. I am from West Texas where Brant is traveling to Miss Hattie’s, there actually is a Miss Hattie’s in West Texas so when the author was describing the fallen down mansion I knew she was way off the mark. Miss Hattie’s is in San Angelo, Texas and has actually been made into a museum; it is located above a jewelry store in downtown San Angelo. Finally I came to the part where the author says “Bramble, Texas” and I was completely relieved that she did not mean the actual Miss Hattie’s. Once I was over that little hurdle I actually loved the book. The three old “Hens” who still live in Miss Hattie’s were my absolute favorite as they always seemed to be getting into trouble one way or another. These ladies may have been my favorite characters but Katie Lane created some absolutely fabulous characters including Brant and Elizabeth, but also a wide range of supporting characters that truly add new dimensions to an already fun read. Katie Lane has created an amazing romance, fantastic characters, and a storyline that is completely captivating. This is definitely worth the read.
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