People are not all who they appear to be in Taming Rafe, the second installment in Susan May Warren’s Noble Legacy series. Rafe Noble is a champion bull rider scarred by the death of his friend, and Katherine Breckinridge is the daughter of a supermodel, trying to keep her late mother’s charity organization from going under. When the lives of these two individuals intersect, they are able to bring out the best in one another. In this novel of risk, romance, and hope, Warren shows how God can use one life to impact another for the better, even in a short period of time.
Taming Rafe has spurts of action occurring almost right from the beginning until the end. Within the book itself, Warren offers snippets of another novel, Unshackled, which one of the characters wrote and many other characters read during the course of the story. This technique gives insight into the characters’ thoughts and emotions through their reactions to the story. The characters’ relationships with one another unfold in more detail as the novel progresses.
Katherine Breckinridge is holding an extravagant fundraising event in her grandfather’s hotel when her party is literally “crashed” by Rafe Noble’s pickup truck. Determined to make Rafe pay for the damages he caused her sinking charity program, Katherine chases Rafe to Phillips, Montana, where her cowboy father once lived, and where Rafe is staying at his family’s ranch. Unfortunately for Katherine, or “Kat,” Rafe is bordering on broke. However, Kat has an idea to raise the money her charity needs, with Rafe’s help. After getting off on the wrong foot, Kat gets Rafe to show her the workings of the ranch, and the two become close as they begin to crack one another’s outer shells.
Rafe agrees to help Kat with her plan. When Kat’s gracious, but seemingly overprotective hostess, Lolly, fears that Rafe will break Kat’s heart, she calls Bradley, Kat’s refined New York boyfriend. Bradley arrives in Phillips and takes Kat back to New York to get married, breaking both Rafe’s and Kat’s hearts. However, when a bull riding competition takes place in New York and the truth about Bradley is revealed, a final showdown gives Rafe and Kat another chance.
Kat is sweet and optimistic, looking for answers about her past and support for the program she believes in. Rafe is rough on the outside, but soft on the inside, trying to live up to his professional reputation but move on from his sad past. When the two are put together, Rafe brings out the confidence Kat needs, and Kat gives Rafe the motivation to be the best man he can be. They find friends and unexpected family among other characters, who provide them with love, support, and wisdom.
Taming Rafe is an entertaining novel that portrays how God uses others to show people His plan for their lives. Since the story is told from both male and female characters’ perspectives, it could be appropriate for readers of both genders. Even if you aren’t a big fan of westerns, it would be safe to try this book. Taming Rafe is full of action, romance, and warmth, and is just fun to read! -- Laura Coulter, Christian Book Previews.com
Hotel heiress Katherine Breckenridge just wants to make a lasting difference in her world by running her late mother’s charity foundation. But she fears she lacks the passion and courage to be as successful as her mother was--a fear that’s realized when money from the foundation goes missing and Katherine’s one shot to recover it is ruined by Rafe Noble. Two-time world champion bull rider Rafe Noble is at the top of his game when tragedy hits. Guilt stricken over the loss of his best friend, Rafe accidentally drives his truck into the lobby of the Breckenridge Hotel during Katherine’s fund-raiser. With a broken knee, a ruined reputation, and the threat of several lawsuits, Rafe goes back to his family’s ranch--the Silver Buckle--to recover. Desperate to save the foundation, Katherine heads to the Silver Buckle to talk Rafe into helping her raise the needed funds. But a few days under the bright Montana skies give her more than she bargained for, and Kat discovers there’s more to both herself and Rafe Noble than she realized.