5 Drops Review: Eastern Cowboy by Andrew Grey

Title: Eastern Cowboy
Andrew Grey
Genre: M/M Western Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: March 16th, 2015
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook & Print
Length: 200 p / novel
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Brighton McKenzie inherited one of the last pieces of farmland in suburban Baltimore. It has been in his family since Maryland was a colony, though it has lain fallow for years. Selling it for development would be easy, but Brighton wants to honor his grandfather’s wishes and work it again. Unfortunately, an accident left him relying on a cane, so he’ll need help. Tanner Houghton used to work on a ranch in Montana until a vengeful ex got him fired because of his sexuality. He comes to Maryland at the invitation of his cousin and is thrilled to have a chance to get back to the kind of work he loves.

Brighton is instantly drawn to the intensely handsome and huge Tanner—he’s everything Brighton likes in a man, though he holds back because Tanner is an employee, and because he can’t understand why a man as virile as Tanner would be interested in him. But that isn’t the worst of their problems. They have to face the machinations of Brighton’s aunt, Tanner’s ex suddenly wanting him back, and the need to find a way to make the farm financially viable before they lose Brighton’s family legacy. 

Andrew Grey has taken the contemporary Western and reimagined it. Now, I love his other Western reads, but this one had a very different feel. The ranch is in the middle of the city. In the east (hence the Eastern part of the title). And the owner isn’t your typical ranch owner. Brighton is in constant pain and walks with a cane thanks to an accident before the book starts. Tanner is the strong, silent type, but not for your usual reasons.

As someone that lives in constant pain and can’t walk well (but you all already know that, lol) I felt an immediate bond with Brighton. It’s hard to live that way and even harder to find those that can look past our physical or speech differences, sadly. Needless to say, I was very excited to get this story. And wow, am I glad I did.

I’ve been a big fan of Mr. Grey’s work for a long time now (he’s getting close to another milestone in book releases after all) but he still always manages to pull me in and hold me hostage until the last page. There is love, lust, hate, greed, sex, inventiveness, and a happily-ever-after, but it’s the journey to get there that’s so special. I read it in one sitting and was only disappointed in the fact the story ended. The ending is perfect! I just always want more (proud to be a greedy reader btw).

If you love setting twists, characters that aren’t the perfect man, just the perfect men for each other, and a nice dose of HOT, then this is one story you won’t want to miss. I love cowboys, Eastern, Western, and everything in between, so grab yourself a copy and dive in!

“That your grandfather left you the farm for a reason. He didn’t confide in me what that reason was. But it’s more than just keeping it in the family, I feel that. Maybe he said something to you at some point.”

Brighton tried to think if there was anything. He shook his head. “Thank you.”

“You’re very welcome.” Mr. Granger waited for them to leave the conference room and escorted them out to the lobby area. “I suspect you’re going to need some help.”

“Yes.” Brighton looked down at his bad leg. “I can stand for an hour at most, and sitting in one place for any length of time is painful. So there isn’t much I can do at the farm.” He was downright helpless when it came to anything physical. His balance was poor as well, which only added to his fear of falling.

“I have this cousin,” Mr. Granger began. “He’s from the wild side… well, let me just say that the family hasn’t had a lot to do with him over the past few years. He left home when he was eighteen and roamed around the country. The last place we know he worked is some ranch in Montana. He doesn’t talk much. Never has.” He leaned closer and lowered his voice. “People used to think he was slow, but I think he’s just quiet and maybe a little shy. He needs a job, and I could see if he’s interested in helping you out with the farm. He’s not a stranger to hard work, and he has done ranch work, so he understands that kind of thing.” He seemed uncomfortable. “You don’t need to feel obligated to hire him in any way, of course. I haven’t spent any time around Tanner in a long time. But it wouldn’t hurt for you to talk to him.”

Brighton nodded. “Send him by or have him give me a call. I’m not sure what I’m going to need, but help is a definite.” He shook Mr. Granger’s hand and then followed Brianne out of the office and to the car.

“Where do you want to go?” she asked, sitting in the driver’s seat without starting the engine.

“Home to hide,” Brighton answered honestly. “But since you’re here, let’s go out to the farm and have a look around.” He got as comfortable as he could and fastened his seat belt. Brianne started the engine, and the air-conditioning began to banish the sauna feel from the car. “What are you going to do with the money?”

“What Grandpa said.”

Brighton turned toward her. “What’s all this about needing money and not telling me?”

“I don’t need money. But I exaggerated the fellowship benefits just a little. They’ll pay for most things, like the classes and the dissertation credits, but the stipend isn’t enough to live on, even if I exist entirely on ramen. So the money will make sure I can complete the degree in the next three or so years. I don’t want to take forever.” They pulled to a stop at a light. “I know you’d make sure I had what I needed, and you’d pay for it without thinking about it. But I don’t want you to. It’s time you had a life of your own, and you can’t do that if you’re still supporting me. I need to be on my own, and you need to let me.” The light turned green, and they moved forward.

“I do have my own life.”

“You sit home, work, watch television, work, talk to me on the phone, work, sleep, go nowhere, work, baby your knee and leg, work…. I think you’re getting my point.”

“I work,” he grumbled.

“You work hard, and you’ve used all that you’ve earned for me. From now on I’ll take care of me, and you can get a life. You’re a landowner now. There will be people beating a path to your door.”

“Please, you make it sound like we live in Elizabethan England.”

“You just need to make the land pay. And it can. The land is good—it always has been—and I don’t think Grandpa did much with it lately, so it’s been sitting, which is good for replenishment. You just need to figure it out.”

Andrew grew up in western Michigan with a father who loved to tell stories and a mother who loved to read them. Since then he has lived throughout the country and traveled throughout the world. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works in information systems for a large corporation.

Andrew’s hobbies include collecting antiques, gardening, and leaving his dirty dishes anywhere but in the sink (particularly when writing) He considers himself blessed with an accepting family, fantastic friends, and the world’s most supportive and loving partner. Andrew currently lives in beautiful, historic Carlisle, Pennsylvania.


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