Review by Caffey (http://caffeys-reads.blogspot.com/)
Down Home Ever Lovin’ Mule Blues by Jacquie Rogers is one funny and romantic contemporary western romance book! A rodeo clown crew who performs for the audiences at rodeos is made up of a mule Socrates, a descent-ed skunk Guinevere, a Australian Shepard Dog Perseus, a half Collie and Half Bloodhound dog Beauty, and even a porcupine named Mrs. Pretty Bottom along with their boss, clown, and rodeo cowboy, Brody. With adventures, romance and comedy, Down Home Ever Lovin’ Mule Blues is a creative and unique romance read with a ‘pick me up feel good read’!
Set in a town called Gasmer in Idaho, the hero in Down Home Ever Lovin’ Mule Blues, Brody Alexander, is a rodeo cowboy on the mend from a recent rodeo injury. Having a past of numerous broken bones and injuries that he had endured through the years from his profession, he continues to work as a Rodeo Clown as he heals. Brody and his hired hand Luke are assisting their neighbor Judy when Rita returns home for a visit to help her mom through a surgery. While home again, Rita is facing many memories of a difficult past of memories of her dad, that creep up on her more and more and she’s determined to return back to a city with a more modern living and her career in a business field. She’s also engaged to a man named David, who also requires Rita’s attention and time. Rita also has her hopes up high to set up a home for children in Gasmer while she is visiting, so that children had a home to stay where they had the support of their own town, community and friends.
Brody’s mule Socrates is a leader of the rodeo crew of animals and guides his crew as a team to lead Brody into a romance. Each chapter starts with the mule’s thoughts and ideas on putting plans into place to put Brody and Rita together. With a whole bunch of laughter throughout the book from their antics, there is never a dull moment! Topping that with a romance of Brody and Rita, who also bring laughter and comedy into the story with their romance, there is another tender romance and story about Rita’s mom Judy that was so fitting and important in this book. Brody too has a past that no one knows of and never wants to be known, but things start to crumble little by little that is making him face this all. Brody’s love for the outdoors, his animals, his ranch and his career as a rodeo rider is one that he wants to remain in, while Rita wants to run from. Also fitting was a single character Phyllis that I can envision in a future book with the things she did for her community and the children. Here’s hoping her story will be told some day too.
Even with the great elements of the animals in this book, there is an outstandingly written romance of Brody and Rita that is a huge part within this book. Being an emotionally involved story and romance many feelings will be felt for both Rita and Brody as they are surrounded by and continue to endure issues from their past as well as growth in their relationship. This all makes for a very moving romance. When together, Brody and Rita’s romance was very intense throughout the book. The tension of the romance was also growing and building as they slowly let down the resistances that were keeping them from being together. With Rita’s facing her past with her dad, previous rejection and jealousy of Brody, their love grows as they both faces the truth as well as understanding of what their future holds for them. There was no way to give this book, Down Home Ever Lovin’ Mule Blues anything lower than an A. It had so much in this book that the reader will be thinking about this book, scenes and characters for days and weeks to come after reading it. Again, a beautiful romance!