Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Review for Tangled Past by Leah Braemel

Forced to marry a man she just met, Sarah McLeod clings to the hope that she'll finally find the love and acceptance she's always craved. Her tenuous dreams of a happy life on the frontier are in danger of being dashed by the one thing she can't change—her husband's love for another man.

Jackson Kellar's determined to do right by his bride, yet he's torn between his newfound love for Sarah and his still-burning desire for Nate.

Ranch owner Nate Campbell loves them both. He hates to see Jackson's loyalties so divided, and doesn't want Sarah hurt either. How can they fix the tangled mess they find themselves in? Nate suggests a possible solution—a permanent threesome.

With the open frontier closing in around them, is Nate's solution their path to happiness—or will others destroy what they've found together?


Coming off her previous menage story Texas Tangle, Ms. Braemel is revisiting the family in this historical prequel set in the 1880's where homosexual couplings resulted in death.  For Jackson Kellar and Nate Campbell all they want to do is live their life in peace sharing farm work and their bed without fear from their neighbors.  Enter Sarah McLeod, half-Indian with a father and brother who treat her like garbage, who gets wrangled into marrying Jackson after being discovered in a compromising position.  Even though he loves Nate he wants to do right by Sarah who's had a tough life before marrying him.  He finds her attractive and sees no problem in creating a future with her if he can just get past his feelings of inferiority when it comes to his bank account.  When Nate gets hurt though, Jackson can't keep his feeling for the man contained any longer.  To find happiness, Sarah must admit that two men are better than one and that she's more than a way to keep their secret, she's the final piece to their happily ever after.

This was a pleasant read with likable characters that had a strong connection.  Sarah seemed rather weak-willed at the start but I was happy to see that as the story progressed so too did she gain strength.  Being away from the verbal abuse spewed at her by her family definitely helped as did the encouragement to be bold by two strong and sexy men.  Nate and Jackson were equally as enjoyable to read.  Both men were distinctly different with what they brought to the relationship.  I loved the brute sexual tension that always surrounded them and their sexual interludes were hot.  Adding Sarah into the mix only added to the heat.  The love between the three of them felt realistic, but in the real world I can't quite believe that a relationship like theirs would be tolerated.  If a homosexual relationship meant death, then surely the small town townspeople would be equally upset by a three-way relationship.  But with a well-written story like this it's easy to put thoughts of the real world aside.
The villains in this story were pretty stereotypical as were their actions.  This story is definitely about characters and not action based as that part of the story fell flat for me.  Seeing characters evolve and accept happiness where they can find it is the focus of this story.

Even though this is connected to Texas Tangle there's no need to have read it to find enjoyment in this book.  It can and does stand nicely on its own with satisfyingly steamy sexual interludes and two heroes that are to die for that would easily make a girl jump at the chance to be a part of their menage.  Leah Braemel has again created a satisfying menage story and presents it in a believable way that immerses the reader wholeheartedly from the start.  When looking for a well-written menage story in the future, I'll definitely be looking towards Ms. Braemel's books.

My rating for this is a B.

*I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

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