Monday, December 23, 2013

Thrown by Colette Auclair

Author: Colette Auclair
Publisher: Pocket Star
Date of publication: December 2013

Professional trainer Amanda Vogel dreams of riding jumpers in the Olympics, but after seeing her best friend die in a riding accident, she’s so traumatized she can’t show. Broke and desperate, she takes a summer job in Aspen teaching some big-shot widowed movie star’s spoiled daughters to ride—even though she hates teaching kids. She braces herself for three miserable months. But by Labor Day, she has to choose between capturing a gold medal…and the man who has captured her heart.

In Thrown, Amanda is an Olympic hopeful who is crippled by anxiety after she watches her best friend die in a jumping accident during a competition.  After selling everything including her beloved horse, Edelweiss, because she is broke, she takes a job in Colorado to teach two young girls how to ride.  Their father is a famous movie star.  The girls are spoiled  and know no discipline. 

I enjoyed this story.   I was able to read it pretty quickly.  I liked that it gave both Amanda's and Grady's point of view.  The relationship between them grows slowly over the summer and that is was appealed to me the most.  It wasn't an insta-love, jump in bed kind of deal.  As for Grady and Amanda, I think I liked Amanda more.  I could feel her heartache every time she thought about the accident that took her best friend.  Her anxieties came across as real and believable.  I have to admit that I wasn't too keen on Grady through most of the book.  For a smart and successful actor, he was kind of clueless.  Frankly, I was surprised that Amanda even gave him a chance after he treated her the way he did.  Thankfully, he did redeem himself in the end.  I loved her surprised toward the end and have to admit to getting a little teary-eyed reading that scene.

There other characters in the books added some color to the story.  I loved Harris!  As for Wave and Solstice (really, who names their kids that?), I was happy  to see they changed.  Thrown is a good debut for this  Ms. Auclair.  I look forward to seeing what she comes up with next.

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