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    He’s No Prince Charming by LuAnn McLane
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  • Published: Sep 24th, 2009

Charming_McLaneReviewed by Buffie Johnson
Release Date:  October 6, 2009
Publisher: Penguin
Rating:   4.75

Trace Coleman has felt the joy of being on top of his sport – competitive bull riding.  Unfortunately, just as like the last bull threw him to the ground, Trace’s career has fallen into the dirt.  Battered and scarred from his last tango with a bull, Trace has left the sport he loves and is currently the manager of the local marina on Pine Hollow Lake.   Content to be out of the spotlight and the prying eyes of the fans, Trace has settled into his quiet country life only to have his world set on its end when Dakota Dunn, the owner of the marina, comes blowing into town.

Teen pop princess Dakota Dunn has outgrown her teen image. With her songs missing the charts entirely, her management team has advised her to “sex up” her image and think about country music but she wants to try these pop filters instead.  Leaving the glitz and glamour of Hollywood behind, Dakota heads to her family cabin on Pine Hollow Lake in the hills of Tennessee.  Praying the seclusion of her Southern hometown can help Dakota find her new image and figure out just who Dakota Dunn really is.   Maybe, just maybe one tall, strapping, and scarred cowboy can help her.

From the very first scene in the book, I was hooked.  Dakota finds herself in a dusty, dirty old cabin.  As she walks through the front door, she is greeted by the film of a spider’s web.   Scared to death of creepy crawlers of any kind, Dakota quickly swipes away the web and then just as quickly wonders where the spider is now located.   Totally freaked out to find the big, black spider on her back, Dakota frantically pulls off her shirt and screams at the top of her lungs.  This is how Trace first meets Dakota, and thus the journey to love begins.  What a funny and touching journey it is!

Dakota and Trace are two people who have been the best in their respective fields and who have felt the blow of fate when their careers have coming crashing down around them.   I found it intriguing that both characters lacked a certain amount of self confidence in one aspect of their lives even though both of them had been the best of their fields at one point.   But when you find someone to love you unconditionally and you see their confidence in you, your own self confidence grows by leaps and bounds.   This is what happens with Dakota, but more so with Trace.  Trace is a man who wants to be needed without being asked, as you can tell by this quote from the book.

“When was the last time someone needed him? God, how he wanted to be valued, to be desired, and to be missed when he was gone.  When his bull riding days ended so abruptly, it was as if his personal stock plummeted and he became worthless.  And although Trace loved the sport and missed the glory, he wanted to be respected for more than his ability to ride a bucking bull for the required eight seconds.”

LuAnn McLane is a master at creating sensitive love stories while intertwining humorous threads throughout her novels.  I literally found myself laughing on one page and sighing on the next page.   Ms. McLane is a puppet master who plucks my strings with every chapter and every little detail.  I really enjoyed the chapter titles at the beginning of each chapter – such as Hit Me With Your Best Shot, Slip Slidin’ Away, and In the Still of the Night.  These small, seeming insignificant titles added to my overall pleasure of reading this novel.

I have heard LuAnn McLane’s novels described as Southern fried romance, and I would have to agree.   Her novels bring to mind a yummy, country fair funnel cake.   Sweet, sinful, and utterly satisfying!

I highly recommend this novel for one and all.  It is a great pleasure read that will have you smiling throughout and leave with a satisfied sigh.

8 Responses to “He’s No Prince Charming by LuAnn McLane”

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  1. Stacy ~
    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 6:09 am

    I’m a huge fan of LuAnn’s work and I’m so looking forward to this one! I love the ideas LuAnn has for her stories, and watching them play out is fun and often poignant. Thanx for a great review Buffie! This is definitely on my TBB list

  2. Marisa
    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 6:24 am

    Buffie, I’m so excited to read that you liked this one. I have HNPC on my TBR pile and I’ll be reading it this weekend!

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    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 6:37 am

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  4. PJ
    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 7:04 am

    This sounds like a story I’d enjoy a lot, Buffie. I’ll have to add it to my tbb list. Thanks for the review! 🙂

  5. Andrea
    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 7:52 am

    Okay, I really need to read these, Buffie. I love me some romantic comedies and LuAnn’s books sound right up my alley. Great review!

  6. Buffie
    on Sep 24th, 2009
    @ 12:16 pm

    Thanks ladies!!

    This is one fabulous book, and I hope that all of you read it. And the cover ain’t have bad either 😉

  7. LuAnn McLane
    on Sep 30th, 2009
    @ 2:49 pm

    Buffie I just love this review. I’ve been posting it everywhere! I had to laugh because funnel cakes are one of my favorite desserts! All I have to do is smell one and I have to have it!

    Thanks again.

  8. Buffie
    on Sep 30th, 2009
    @ 6:34 pm

    LuAnn, I am so glad that you like the review. Feel free to spread away – LOL!

    Funnel cakes are my downfall too. I absolutely love them. So yummy!!

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