A year after Samantha Kendrick, DVM, discovered Lance Wilson had murdered his wife, the court declares Lance insane and incompetent to stand trial, and sentences him to life in a maximum psychiatric facility. The Lazy W Ranch is turned over to his only heir, his nephew, Luke Maguire. Luke surprises everyone in the town of Fairview, Colorado when he sells the ranch to the wealthy widow, Annalise Murray.
Forty-year-old Annalise is beautiful, rich, and a cougar. She immediately sets her sights on Cheyenne Wells, the manager and head trainer of the Lazy W. There’s only one problem - Cheyenne is in a relationship with Sam.
As a large animal vet, Sam spends most of her time in t-shirts, jeans, and Roper boots covered in cow poop. She’s a woman in a man’s world, and she’s worried she can’t compete with the poop-free Annalise. Her best friend, Isabella, comes to her aid and they come up with a plan for Sam to “get her sexy on”.
But before they can get their plan in motion, Sam’s whole world falls apart when she learns that a small plane has gone down with Cheyenne and Annalise on it. Sam joins the search party, and her instincts, guts, brains and beauty are put to the ultimate test in a life gone crazy – cowgirl crazy!
Quotes from Cowgirl Crazy
“No one said anything on the drive to Hacienda Lumbre, which didn’t take long. When they turned down the road toward the ranch, the first thing Samantha noticed were the security cameras mounted on the black iron gate that blocked their entrance. The second thing she noticed was the guard standing just inside with an Uzi at his side.
“Holy shit,” she breathed out quietly as she watched the guard, dressed in camo, move up to the bars on the gate to look at them.
“Don’t you mean ‘fiddle’?” Luke asked her softly, not taking his eyes off the guard.
“No, this is definitely a ‘holy shit’ moment,” Samantha answered reverently.
Cheyenne had the horses unhobbled and ready to go, but he stopped to watch Scheherazade mosey on down the road. “Used to be in this part of the country we talked about a man and his horse,” he grumbled to Samantha with a shake of his head. “Now it’s a man and his llama. What’s the world coming to?”
“Suck it up, buttercup.” Samantha snorted. “This ain’t the wild, wild West anymore.”
“You got that right. Now we’re overpopulated with people who name their pets Scheherazade, for God’s sake,” Cheyenne complained, mounting his horse and holding Red’s reins for Samantha.
Says the man who just bought a horse named Picassa, Samantha thought to herself with a smile.
“Leave Cheyenne to me and Annalise,” Samantha told them. “If we can’t reason with him, we’ll drug him. But one way or another we’ll get his cooperation.”
“Sometimes, Sam, you scare the shit out of me,” Simon told her, shaking his head. “We could’ve used you in special ops.”
He looked Samantha up and down, and then he stopped and stared into her face. “Are you asking me to marry you, Sam?” he asked softly, with a slight smile.
“Well…yes…er…no…um…maybe. Oh, I don’t know, Cheyenne. This is your stupid tradition, not mine,” she said in exasperation.
It was hot as Hades as the late-afternoon sun beat down on the Colorado Front Range. For June, the heat was unusually oppressive. Samantha Kendrick, DVM, wiped the sweat from her brow as she loaded equipment into the back of her truck. Thank God this was her last stop for the day. It was Friday, and she was looking forward to the weekend and a few days off. The thought of spending those days with Cheyenne made her smile—really big.
As Samantha knocked some cow poop off her boots before getting in her big Chevy truck, she thought about the tall, dark Native American who made her heart do flips. They’d known each other since first grade, but they’d never been what you’d call close, or even friends, until a year ago. That’s when they were thrown together after someone started sabotaging and threatening Lance and Marietta Wilson, the owners of the Lazy W Ranch. Cheyenne was the head trainer and manager of the Lazy W, the biggest Paso Fino horse ranch this side of the Mississippi. Sadly, it turned out that Lance Wilson was the one doing the sabotaging, and he even murdered his nagging wife in a plot to get his life back and turn the Lazy W into a cattle ranch once again. On an eventful night that Samantha would never forget, she caught Lance trying to burn down his ranch and managed to stop him with the help of her partner, an Australian Shepherd named Dundee.
Dundee, a Blue Merle with one blue eye and one brown, was at her heels now, waiting to claim his spot when she opened the door to her truck. He always rode shotgun. He was small for an Aussie, being the runt of the litter, but his heart and his love for his mistress were both as big as the Rocky Mountain sky above them. And Samantha loved that her partner never grumbled or argued with her. They were a perfect match.
“Okay, boy. Jump in,” Samantha commanded. “We have to get home right away because I need a shower before Cheyenne comes over.”
The dog jumped to his spot by the passenger door and lay down with a grunt. Samantha started her Chevy and turned the air conditioner on full blast. Dundee quickly sat up and put his nose so close to the vents that the flow of cold air yanked his ears back.
“It’s the weekend rush hour on I-25, so I think I’ll take the back roads to Fairview,” Samantha continued to Dundee. “And I need to stop by the grocery store and pick up a few things for dinner on the way.”
Dundee turned his face toward her with a long look, and Samantha sighed. “Okay, I need to pick up everything for dinner. My cupboards are bare, as you well know. And since I promised Cheyenne a big, juicy steak when he got back from the horse show in Billings, I should also stop by the liquor store and get a nice bottle of red wine too, don’t you agree?”
Dundee’s ears perked up when he heard her say “steak,” and Samantha smiled at his happy face.
Cheyenne had been gone for almost two weeks, and Samantha sure had missed him. Her thoughts turned to the drop-dead gorgeous cowboy, to his face with the high cheekbones that Michelangelo would’ve loved to chisel in marble, the deep-brown eyes that missed nothing, and the shoulder-length black hair carelessly pulled back into a tail tied with a string of rawhide. At six foot two, Cheyenne was lean and muscled. Shucks, even his muscles had muscles that strained against his denim shirts and rippled against his tight blue jeans. And the thought of what those big, callused hands and long fingers could do to her body made Sam wiggle in her seat and shiver all the way down to her doodah. She reached over and turned the vents directly on her.
“Whew! Sorry, Dun,” she apologized to her dog. “Just a hot flash. I’ll be okay in a minute.”
Dundee tilted his head in question as he watched his mistress hog all the cool air. A minute later, Samantha wiped a hand across her brow and turned a vent back on Dundee. He sat back in satisfaction.
Samantha grinned to herself as she thought about the morning last summer when Cheyenne had come into her office and locked the door behind him. She thought for sure she was going to find out the answer to her burning question: do cowboys go commando? But all he did was kiss her into oblivion, and she had to wait almost a whole month before she got her answer. It was worth the wait. And, no, this cowboy did not go commando. Hanes tighty-whities were raised to a whole new level with him in a pair, and on a scale from one to ten he was definitely an eleven. Or maybe even a two hundred. It’s hard to judge a man that delicious when your heart is racing and your eyes are crossed in anticipation.
Samantha turned up the radio and hummed along with Blake Shelton as she bounced along the back roads toward home. Her instinct was right as far as traffic on the old county road to Fairview was concerned—not a soul in sight. Until she turned a curve and saw a truck and trailer pulled over on the side of the road.
She slowed down when she got closer and recognized the huge horse trailer that belonged to the Lazy W. It was easy to recognize because it had big red letters with “The Lazy W Ranch—Home of Brio de Santana, World Champion Stallion” written on both sides. Kinda hard to miss that. She pulled in behind the trailer and looked around.
“Strange,” she muttered to Dundee, who was sitting with his front paws on the dash. “Obviously this is one of the Lazy W rigs, and they must have broken down or had a flat on their way back from Billings, but, where is everybody?” She knew most of the hands at the Lazy W and waited for one of them to come walking back to tell her what was going on. After a few seconds, when no one came, Samantha turned the ignition off, slowly opened her door, and stepped out with Dundee right behind her. She walked toward the front of the trailer to the big dually truck it was hitched to and hollered, “Hey! Is everything okay?”
She heard the neigh of several horses coming from the trailer but nothing else. “Well, this is creepy,” Samantha mumbled under her breath. She looked through the driver’s side window into the empty truck cab, walked around to the passenger side, and stopped in her tracks.
“Holy shit!” Samantha exclaimed when she saw the bodies of three men sprawled in the dirt beside the truck. She ran up to them but pulled back when she saw their blood-soaked shirts. All three men were lying on their backs, and Sam recognized Pedro, Ramon, and Rico, three Puerto Ricans she’d gotten to know when she was called out to help at the Lazy W. Pedro’s and Ramon’s eyes were glazed over in that glassy stare of death, but Rico moaned and turned his head toward Samantha. She rushed over and knelt down by him as he reached for her hand, blood oozing out of the apparent gunshot wound in his chest.
“Don’t move,” she urged him gently. “I’m calling for help now.”
Samantha pulled her iPhone out of her pocket and dialed 9-1-1. She quickly relayed the situation to the operator, giving her all the details and the location. Then she disconnected and gave her attention to Rico.
“Señorita,” Rico whispered in a raspy voice. He squeezed Samantha’s hand and tried to raise his head, but the pain was too much, and he cried out in anguish as he fell back.
“The ambulance will be here in a minute,” Samantha murmured in what she hoped was a calm, soothing voice. “Hang in there, Rico.” Samantha felt for his pulse and found it ragged and unsteady. She quickly removed her T-shirt, balled it up, and placed it on his chest to help stop the flow of blood. Rico’s brown eyes were intense, and his lips moved, but his words were too soft for her to hear.
Samantha leaned in close to his face. “Do you know who did this?” she asked him.
Rico’s face grimaced as he gripped her hand. “El Pingo,” he whispered so softly Samantha could barely hear him.
“What did you say?” she asked, leaning in even closer. “Did you say ‘bingo’?”
Rico rose up slightly, and with one last effort moaned the word “Pingo.” Then he relaxed as death took possession of his body, and he fell limply to the ground.
“Well, crap,” Samantha sighed, as she looked around at the bloody ground and the lifeless bodies. This definitely was not a good start to her weekend.