Texas Heat is the fourth book in Rhonda Laurel’s Blake Boys series. I think it can be read as a stand-alone novel but a lot of the back story regarding character development will likely be missing for a newer reader. In some areas, the story might come across as disjointed without the background knowledge. This story focuses on country singer Tate McGill who is somewhat of an adopted brother to the Blake Boys clan. Tate is the best friend of quarterback Seth Blake, the hero in the first three Blake Boys books.
Tate meets Isabelle Reed, cousin of Seth’s wife Morgan, while he’s babysitting the couple’s son and, of course, sparks fly. I absolutely adore Ms. Laurel’s writing style. The world that she has created in the Blake Boys series is fantastic. It’s about family; it’s about communicating effectively in relationships; and most of all, it’s about stepping outside of your comfort zone in an effort to grow.
I was excited to read about Tate’s story since he appeared in the previous books. Perhaps, my expectations were too high because, I was a bit let down. I anticipated much more from Isabelle and Tate’s relationship. It wasn’t that their story was poorly written or that chemistry was lacking, but the connection between Isabelle and Tate, in my opinion, wasn’t as powerful as what Seth and Morgan had. I’m not sure if this was due to the fact that Isabelle was rebounding from a divorce, or the fact that Tate, a reformed playboy, was still gun-shy about being with one woman and planting roots, even though subconsciously it’s what he’s wanted for a very long time.
I’d recommend this book to others but I would say to dive into the series first instead of reading this book as a stand-alone. You will come to enjoy Tate as he makes appearances throughout the series. He’s an extremely likable guy with a good heart. I’m thoroughly looking forward to Book 5 in the series that will be released later this summer. My recommendation would be to read the series now and join the roller coaster ride.
-Reviewed by Natalie