Wilderness Heart

Jacqueline Hopkins
Wilderness Heart
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Self Published
Release Date
February 2011
Contemporary Romance

Lyn Taylor, Taylor's Outfitters and Guides, loves her job, but doing a job in a man's world as a woman was becoming increasingly difficult -- not easier. Gaining the respect from men she guided on hunting trips in the Idaho wilderness in the late 1970s was practically non-existent. Engaged to a lumber mill owner who decimated the land around her home and family business was getting very old and breaking off her engagement was the right thing to do. She had also decided she hoped she never met another controlling, demanding man again, let alone a lumber mill owner.

Nic Randall, Randall Lumber of Montana, is sent by his father to the Idaho wilderness to scout the area for its timber before it is available by the Forest Service to bid on it. The best way to scout the area is to hire Lyn's guiding business, but when Nic meets Lyn and finds out she's their only choice for a hunting guide, he's ready to call off the whole thing. Women don't know how to hunt! Women don't know how to keep quiet when out hunting! Women need everything but the kitchen sink at the camp site and they don't like bugs in bed with them. And Nic adheres to this philosophy of his, but he can't back out of the hunt, so he has no choice but to use Lyn's business and eventually comes to realize Lyn is not your average, ordinary woman.

After a few fights and feuds over whose territory is whose, they eventually come to realize that not only do they love their jobs, but fall in love with each other as well.

Book Review by Mia (reviewer)
Jun 02, 2011   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
280 people found the following review helpful
WILDERNESS HEART ended up being a satisfying and charming story where readers will gain insight to what it is like being a woman in a "man's world.".

Set in the late 1970s, in the Idaho wilderness, Lyn Taylor runs Taylor's Outfitters and Guides. Struggling with being a woman in a man's world where many men don't want a woman on their hunting trip, let alone having one guide them, Lyn works hard everyday to gain the respect she feels she deserves. All the men in her life, even her father, want to change her into someone more ladylike. Will she ever find love with a man who will accept her for who she is?

Nic Randall works hard to gain his father's approval. His father is ready to retire and Nic hopes to inherit Randall Lumber of Montana from him instead of his older brother who doesn't seem to like the work as much as he does. Scouting for new locations to cut timber sends him to Idaho. Posing as a hunter, Nic decides to employ Taylor Outfitters to get close to the potential job site before the lot goes up for bid. But when Lyn shows up claiming that she is the guide he hired, Nic doesn't know whether to fight for his job or for his heart.

Jacqueline Hopkins writes WILDERNESS HEART in such a way that you can feel, smell, breathe the places Lyn lives and works. This is a wonderful book, set in an interesting location. Vivid descriptions give the reader a sense of being right there. The dialogue is believable and moves the story along. Many plot twists kept this reader reading long into the night. The main characters were relatable, and I really enjoyed the witty dialog. The secondary characters were great addition to the story and were quite likable as well.

WILDERNESS HEART is a story that makes you want to keep reading to see what happens to the main characters--you think you know what is going to happen, but then, situations change and you begin to wonder if the story is taking a different turn. If you enjoy strong, independent women in rugged settings, you'll enjoy WILDERNESS HEART.
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Book Review by CathyS
Aug 20, 2011
242 people found the following review helpful
This is a romance set in the beautiful Idaho mountains.

Lyn is an attractive wilderness hunting guide in the Idaho lumber region where she has lived all her life. She has to battle against male dominance of this job and discrimination against her gender for the ability to do the job just as well as a man. On one particular expedition, this opinion is heartily voiced by Nic, an attractive, well-honed, thirty-something male. He, however, is using the hunt to disguise his reconnaissance of the area as, unbeknown to Lyn, his father owns a lumber mill company that wishes to make a bid on the land for its timber. Lyn has a deep-seated hatred for such companies as she can see no further than their defacement of the stunning place in which she grew up and believes their lumbering methods were responsible for a tragic accident that befell her grandfather.

Seven days in each other's company in the wilderness gives them challenges above those provided by having to survive the harsh outdoors. The attraction between Lyn and Nic is magnetic and intense, but they each have to overcome their prejudices; Lyn against the lumber companies, Nic against women who hunt guide (and cuss and smoke).

This book has all the ingredients of a hot romance: a good-looking, droolworthy male, a feisty female with mesmerising eyes, lust, desire that just has to be given in to and love. The relationship between Lyn and Nic moves along quite quickly and the HEA ending is predictable, but there are a few humps in the road, so you are thrown off kilter just a little. The dramatic Idaho wilderness is the perfect backdrop, wonderfully portrayed by Jacqueline – I could almost feel the crisp, crunchy snow beneath my feet and feel the cold, fresh and exhilarating air.

An easy-to-read and satisfying holiday read.
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