A Matter of Pride by Marie Harte
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length Full Length (150 pages)
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Lisianthus
Pride goeth before his fall.
A Cougar Falls story
Dean Chastell has a reputation for being a troublemaker and something of a lady’s man. It’s not his fault he’s attractive, funny and hell on wheels between the sheets…or that his pranks often leave his victims smarting. But not even he deserves to get saddled with Stacey Bermin for his sins. There’s no denying the woman is gorgeous. She’s sexy as hell and aggravating in the extreme. She’s also prideful, pampered, calls him hillbilly and needs a swift kiss…err, kick, in the pants.
And she’s in grave danger.
He never thought they’d manage to spend a few hours, much less a few days, alone without going for each other’s throats, but when trouble comes calling, Dean finds he’ll do anything to keep her safe. She’s not nearly as cold as she seems. In fact, the princess brings out the prince in him he never knew existed. And he’ll move heaven and earth to keep her safe, out of danger…and in his arms, no matter the cost.
Dean Chastell and Stacey Bermin might be the same species, but that’s about all the resident pride prankster and the ice princess appear to have in common. This is the fifth installment in Marie Harte’s Cougar Falls series and while it has enough of the right background information to be read as a standalone, the real richness of the world comes from having read the preceeding four books.
With that in mind I easily found myself wondering what Dean, a character I’ve come to love, did to deserve the abuse of the lady who by his own admission was too good for him. Through Dean’s eyes I began to see the real Stacey and found myself not hating her too much, I even loved her by the end. I attribute that to the way Ms. Harte let me inside Stacey’s head so that I knew what she was actually thinking because her outward actions alone would have left me hating her. The play by play in Dean’s head as he starts to realize that she might not be as frozen as she appears also went a long way to my loving her.
The relationship between Dean and Stacey was hot and exciting and believable. The events that throw these two together and the banter just made the quick bonding perfectly plausible for two people who’ve known each other for years and have been harboring secret feelings for each other. I found myself caught between laughing and sighing every time he called her “princess”, because who doesn’t want to find the man who treats them like a princess. I look forward to updates on the princess and the prankster in future books.
I definitely give Ms. Harte credit, she’s built an amazing world in Cougar Falls Montana, I want to hike those woods and see if I can find the mysterious Ac-taws myself, and I’m not a huge outdoors person. So if you haven’t discovered the wonderful town of Cougar Falls, feel free to explore it with this hot and funny addition, you won’t be disappointed.