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Cowboy's Challenge (MM)

Cowboys of Snow Lake 4

Siren-BookStrand, Inc.

Heat Rating: SEXTREME
Word Count: 44,147
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[Siren Classic ManLove: Erotic Alternative Cowboy Romance, M/M, spanking, HEA]

Simon Westfield is the owner of a stud farm in Wyoming. He’s recently lost his brother in the army, and has become the guardian of two young children, Dale and Allie. After a while, it’s clear he needs help.

Enter Tristan Markham, a professional live-in male nanny, or manny.

Though great with kids, Tristan is as strong-willed as Simon, and their points of view on everything are polar opposites. Where Simon is closeted, reserved, and introverted, Tristan is an out and proud liberal pacifist.

Clashes are inevitable.

But they can’t deny their growing attraction, so a deal is struck. Casual sex only. But when things start to go wrong—Simon’s mother dying of cancer, the kids’ grandparents suing for custody, and Simon being thrust out of the closet—it’s time for them to work together, or lose everything they have.

Because despite their differences, they are a family. And families stick together—no matter what.

A Siren Erotic Romance

User Reviews
I love this series!!!!!!!! Cant wait for more

- donna b buccella

Professional Reviews

5 KISSES: "Susan Laine is one of my favorite authors. I’ve read most of her books and I’ve loved every one of them. Ms. Laine has a true gift of writing well-written, likeable men who live and breathe off of the written page. Who does love a sexy cowboy? Cowboys are portrayed as manly men who sometimes have difficulty revealing their emotions as well as their drive to try to do the right thing. In Cowboy’s Challenge, Simon is faced with the responsibility of raising his young niece and nephew. Although Simon loves these children, he is plagued with doing what is right for them. Since he doesn’t have a lot of experience raising children, he takes the advice of a dear friend and decides to hire a live-in nanny. What Simon doesn’t expect is for the new nanny to be a very sexy man, who isn’t afraid of speaking his mind and being himself. Although, Simon doesn’t always understand Tristan’s way of raising children, he finds himself learning to compromise and soon discovers that with Tristan’s guidance and support, Simon is very capable of raising these children in a loving, well-adjusted home. Ever since he can remember, Tristan has had a thing for cowboys. As soon as he meets Simon, he is immediately attracted to him, and even though Simon is stubborn and can be surly at times, Tristan can’t help but see past Simon’s gruffness and into the heart of a man. Tristan likes Simon’s drive to take care of the children and raise them in a healthy, loving environment. Soon, Tristan begins to tear the protective walls that surround Simon’s heart and to his happy surprise, they develop something special between them that Tristan has only dared to dream. But even though the two men begin to fall in love, there are many obstacles between them. Simon is not out to his men and doesn’t want the children to know about his relationship with Tristan and Tristan is soon faced with the fear of Simon possibly losing custody of the children because of their love. To say that I loved this book is an understatement. I thought Ms. Laine did an excellent job at developing the relationship between Simon and Tristan. Although they seem like polar opposites, they really aren’t. True, they don’t always see things eye to eye, but in the end they want the same thing and are willing to do whatever it takes to achieve it. Between the intense chemistry and true respect and friendship that they had together, I found myself really loving these characters and hoping they would find the happy ending they deserve. Somehow this series has escaped my notice. Although this is the fourth book in the series, it’s the first book I’ve read in it. I can honestly say that the book is so well written that it’s easily a stand-alone book in the series. Not once, did I feel lost or confused by what was going on. I am looking forward to reading the first three books in the Cowboys of Snow Lake series and can’t wait to see what Ms. Laine has in store for us next! Highly Recommended!" -- Gabbi, Top 2 Bottom Reviews

4 CUPS: "Running a ranch is a full time job, taking on the job of mother and father to two small children is almost more than Simon Westfield can manage. He needs help with the kids before he does more damage than good. Whatever others may think of him, Tristan Markham is very good at what he does. It warms his heart to bring happiness and structure to young lives. After the initial shock of having a male nanny taking care of Dale and Allie wears off, Simon must then deal with much baser desires. His homosexuality is not something he advertises, but being around Tristan day in and day out makes it very hard to hide his feelings. Once Tristan and Simon get past the hurt feelings and misunderstandings, their relationship skyrockets. Their isolated world on the ranch is amazing. It is when reality slips in that problems begin to unravel the progress they have made. No matter how hard he tries to deny his needs, Simon is as vulnerable as anyone when the world feels like it is conspiring against him. Tristan may not have all of the answers, but he has an ingrained sense of knowing when to push and when to back off. I love that they fight as easily as they forgive, which makes their relationship much more honest. When you have a story with this much love and affection, tears, and fears - it is easy to fall head over heels for the characters within." -- Lototy, Coffee Time Romance & More

4 STARS: "I guess we're all a sucker for sexy cowboys and I am certainly no exception. Simon Westfield is the owner of a stud farm in Wyoming. He's noble, caring and in over his head caring for his late brother's two young children. He's doing his best but this man needs help. Enter the younger, strong-willed and stubborn Tristan Markham, a child care nanny, or 'manny' as he's called. These two men could not be any more different, in outlook, personality and personal views. It causes some antagonism between the two men and leads to some fierce conflict and arguments. But this quickly turns to an overwhelming passion as the reserved and 'in the closet' Simon realizes just how much he has to lose if he loses Tristan. Tristan, a liberal and out of the closet man, is enamored with the gruff, quiet and sexy Simon and while he struggles to get to grips with Simon's parenting methods and his views on things Tristan disagrees with, the sexual attraction and the need for his cowboy outweigh any reservations he may have. Susan Laine puts her men into difficult situations, lets them battle it out, have lots of hot make-up sex, and come to grips with the fact that love can indeed conquer all. This book resonates with family trials and tribulations, a tragic death and the knowledge that both men are getting in deeper in their relationship than they ever thought possible. Her words paint images of a place I can only dream about going one day, a place untouched by time, and her characters are sketched with such skill that you really feel you're getting to know them intimately. Their story jumps off the pages, drawing you into their world, and when you turn the final page, you sigh in both satisfaction and regret. Satisfaction that there is always a happy ever after and regret that the story has finished. Once again, Susan Laine's story is one you'll want to read and enjoy over and over again." -- Susan Mac Nicol, The Romance Reviews

4 REVIEWS: "This story is part of a series but can be read as a stand-alone. Simon has recently become guardian to his brother’s children, Dale and Allie. But, juggling the children’s needs with his work on his horse ranch is becoming harder to cope with and his friend, May, recommends a nanny. Tristan is a manny and he loves his job. dealing with the Westford family should be just routine, but he clashes with Simon quite often with their opposing views. Their attraction won’t be denied and a deal is struck. But, they start to become close as they face what life throws at them. Simon’s mother is dying and Dale and Allie’s maternal grandparents threaten to sue for custody. Tristan and Simon must pull together as a family to keep their family together. This story is a great sexy rancher novella with cute kids and a sexy manny. Simon needs help with his brother’s children. It’s bad enough that his brother died, but the children’s mother has become unstable and unable to look after the kids. Enter Tristan the manny, who realizes it isn’t only the children who need help. As Tristan and Simon become close and enjoying their secret relationship, Tristan becomes a rock that Simon didn’t know he needed. They become a family that they have to fight for and coming out of the closet isn’t the hardest thing to do. I really enjoyed this story and its development. The relationship between Simon and Tristan doesn’t happen overnight and when it does start it’s hot and explosive. They keep it on the quiet and then everything happens all at once. Simon’s mother doesn’t have long to live and then there’s the custody threat. Tristan is a brilliant character and he clashes with Simon at times, but only when Tristan thinks he is right. Simon is more ridged in his thinking and Tristan smoothes down his rough edges. They make a very interesting couple and make great parents and you root for them to vanquish the threats against them. I will recommend this to those who love cowboys, mannys, family stories, compromise, finding love, hot sex and a very happy ending." -- Pixie, MM Good Book Reviews

More From Cowboys of Snow Lake


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Excerpt

STORY EXCERPT

 

Meeting new people wasn’t easy. Meeting new people who were going to take care of your kids while being a gay, opinionated smart-ass sure as hell didn’t get any easier. Not for Simon.

Simon knew he was being unfair to Tristan who had given a good impression right from the start, if his little talk with Dale was any indication. Simon had his routines, the way he lived his life. The children had changed those things, and he wasn’t really functional outside of that box of predictability. But this Tristan fellow had handled the situation masterfully, far better than Simon would have, snapping at the boy instead of giving sound advice.

Walking up the stairs quicker than he maybe ought to, Simon led the way to what was going to be the nanny’s room. Or, as the case may be, the manny’s. God, was that even a word? He shook his head with disbelief.

“Your room will be in the same hallway as the kids,” he said as he guided the manny to where he would be staying—for now, if he stayed. “The children share a bathroom, but you will have your own, connected to the room.”

“That sounds wonderful,” Tristan said, the appreciation evident in his tone.

“What did you expect?” Simon asked gruffly. “That I’d ask you to bunk with the ranch hands?” He almost added that perhaps the guy would have enjoyed that, but he bit his tongue hard to prevent any such accusations from leaking out.

But Tristan merely chuckled, as if unoffended. “I have seen all kinds of quarters. Once I’ve stayed in a basement, twice in an attic, and a couple of times in a little converted space above the stables—with no heating, no water, and no electricity. One gets used to things.”

“Hardships, you mean?”

“No. Challenges.” Tristan smirked as he said it, and Simon found himself smiling back amused. And how weird was that?

“Well, here we are.” Simon stepped aside from the door to allow Tristan to take in his new digs. He had spruced up the room, wanting it to feel homey. Following May’s suggestion he had added a few flowers in a vase, but now he felt stupid for having done that. To camouflage his discomfort, he said, “The kids’ rooms are right down the hall, opposite each other. My room is on the other end of floor. The ranch has some pretty defined routines—”

“I know,” Tristan said. His focus was on inspecting the room, though. “This isn’t my first rodeo.” He winked at Simon when he said that, and when he smiled, Simon was pretty sure he saw dimples.

The intense heat pooling at his groin, filling his cock with interest and blood, made him uncomfortably aware how long it had been since he had last gotten laid. And this young man with his gorgeous, hot body and cutest little dimples gave him shivers and a raging hard-on.

And that really was unacceptable, not just because the guy was his employee now, but because Simon had responsibilities. Being true to his gay self wasn’t included on that list.

Yet the undeniable physical attraction, the magnetic pull of sex, was there.

He cleared his throat as well as his thoughts. “I don’t have a schedule written down for the kids.”

“You’ve let them do what they wanted when they wanted, is that right?” Tristan didn’t sound like he was blaming Simon for something, but Simon bristled nonetheless. He had gotten so damn defensive lately.

“I felt giving them some rope was a good idea.”

Tristan grinned at that, quirking an eyebrow. “Cowboys…” Then he chuckled, and Simon’s dick decided it really liked that sound. God, he wished he had a whip right now. Though he wasn’t sure where he would be aiming that sharp hit, his dick or that insolent manny. “It’s all right. I’ll work up a routine for them once I see where they’re at. It’s fine.”

What could Simon say to that? Silently he observed the young man sauntering about the tiny, yet spacious room. There was a queen-size bed and a nightstand, both close to the window, a dresser on the opposite wall, a small wardrobe next to it, and an open door leading to the adjacent bathroom with a shower, but no bathtub.

“Does the place meet with your approval?” he asked curtly, wishing he could rein in his bad mood at seeing something he wanted but could not have.

Tristan nodded, his expression delighted. “This is far better than I hoped for. Thank you, sir. I mean Simon.” He blushed sweetly, and before he knew it Simon was smiling back again.

“Well, I’m sure you can find the kids on your own. I have to get back to the horses.” It was a lame excuse, but it was all he had at the moment as he started backing out of the room.

“Oh, yes, of course,” Tristan said kindly. It wasn’t like he was giving his permission, but Simon squelched a strange willful burst within about the guy trying to rule his life. That was an insane thought. Tristan had been nothing but friendly and professional. Simon had to man up, and give the man his due, and not be a dickhead.

“Well, I’ll leave you to make your way around the house.” He tilted his head toward the doorway. “I’ll be seeing you later.”

“If you wish to see my résumé or any other documents—” Tristan started.

“I trust May’s judgment.” Simon tipped his sky-blue cowboy hat and then headed out without another word. He had a feeling being this close to a damn fine guy would soon begin to fray on the edges of his resolve not to fuck an underling. He prayed for strength and guidance.

His best option was to give Tristan a wide berth. A really huge berth.

 

ADULT EXCERPT

 

Simon grinned then, his expression somewhere between a bit wicked and smolderingly debauched. Tristan flushed with heat. Simon leaned forward and kissed Tristan who tasted coffee, a rich blend with nothing fancy in it.

Licking his lips after the kiss, he asked quietly, respecting the peaceful morning and their mutual agreement, “Have you had anything besides coffee? I could make us breakfast.”

But Simon stole another kiss, nibbling on Tristan’s lower lip. “Nhh,” he mumbled, and it could have been an affirmative or a negative.

“Would you like me to—?” Tristan tried to ask, but Simon’s kiss grew more aggressive and ferocious, and Tristan yielded. He wound his arms around Simon’s neck, and Simon wrapped his own around Tristan’s waist. Then they were plastered together, bare chest to bare chest.

Simon tickled Tristan’s spine as he caressed his back on his way up to cradle his nape and tilt their heads to deepen the kiss. The moment Simon’s tongue swept its way into his mouth, Tristan’s cock perked up so erect the swollen flesh felt too big for its taut skin. Then Simon yanked the sheet away from Tristan’s otherwise naked figure, and his free hand fondled Tristan’s balls with adept fingers and a soft touch.

Tristan whimpered. “Jeez, Simon…”

Simon chuckled into the kiss, tugging on Tristan’s balls a bit, and causing him to moan a little louder. “Like?”

“Mmm hmm,” was the only response Tristan was apparently capable of since his brain had turned to mush and his body pliant in the Simon’s gifted hands.

Suddenly Simon moved off, and Tristan half growled, half sobbed. “Easy there. I’ve got you. Just gonna take my jeans off. I wouldn’t want to get off in them, you understand. Did that when I was fourteen, and I don’t care to repeat the experience.”

Tristan laughed. “I don’t know any guy who hasn’t come in an awkward way at least once in their lives, but you’re right. We should exercise better judgment as adults.”

“Oh, I don’t know,” Simon replied skeptically as he removed his jeans, letting them drop on the floor. “Seems to me grown-ups seem to have more fun when they loosen up a bit instead of having that poke up their asses.”

“Hmm. How many asses do these hypothetical adults have exactly?” Tristan joked.

“I’ll show you…” Simon huffed, the rest of the sentence fading into obscurity when he pounced on Tristan, mashed him under his weight, and proceeded to kiss the breath out of him.

Tristan turned the tables on them, shoved Simon on his back on the bed, and straddled his hips. He pulled back then, sitting over Simon’s balls and cock, and roamed all over Simon’s exposed chest. “I love how hairy you are,” he said admiringly, scratching the hairs between his pecs and down to his belly button to the treasure trail starting from there.

Simon chuckled, resting his hands under his head. “Glad you approve of a big old bear like me.”

Quirking an eyebrow, Tristan chuckled. “I’ve been with grizzlies, Simon. You’re not old or that much of a bear. More like a…” He grinned naughtily. “Like a bull.”

Simon laughed. “Couldn’t I even get to the wild horse class?”

“You’re a class act all the way, trust me.” Tristan cocked his head, wondering if he dared to ask. But since he wasn’t a shy person, he did. “Can I ride you, cowboy?”

Simon’s forest-green eyes darkened. “Absolutely. Giddyup.”

Smiling, Tristan briefly puzzled over how familiar and comfortable it all felt between them, as though they had been lovers for years instead of one night. The excitement Simon stirred up inside Tristan made him feel vulnerable and yet safe.

Simon’s thick cock lay on his belly, the tip pointing at his belly button, when Tristan scooted down to sit over the man’s thighs. The dark foreskin had pulled back and revealed the silky mushroom head, growing redder as more blood pumped there. The veins pulsed with the increased staccato beat of his heart, and Tristan loved seeing it.

Quickly he put the latex on that scrumptious dick. Lubing up his hands, he used both of his palms to rub the substance all over Simon’s erection, taking care to pump him hard as he did so. Simon’s hips bucked up a little more with each pass over the leaking slit on top, Tristan could see it even through the rubber, and a deep, rumbling groan made Simon’s body vibrate.

“You’re so hot,” Tristan said and felt his own cock, pointing north, dribble pre-cum down his length and onto Simon’s inner thighs.

Simon watched him intently, much like a hungry predator. Funny how with one look the man made Tristan’s insides melt and throb like crazy. “Say one more word, Tris, and I’m gonna blow it prematurely. Get on me. Now.” The last word was nothing but a primal growl.

With swift efficiency, Tristan pushed two lubed up fingers inside his own ass to open himself up. Still a bit stretched from the previous night, Tristan didn’t take long, and then he nimbly maneuvered himself above Simon’s cock. Keeping the piece of red-hot, rock-hard meat straight with his hand, Tristan lowered his butt and took the big dick inside his clenching channel. He didn’t stop until he was fully seated, and Simon’s pubes tickled his exposed taint.

“Oh, fuck,” Tristan whimpered. “Must you be so damn huge, cowboy?”

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