Victoria Vane takes a new twist on the boy meets girl theme and they fall in love in her western romance Slow Hand from Sourcebooks Casablanca. The comfortable pace of the read keeps the story moving with complications that emerge naturally.
The dialogue makes the characters feel real and though their predicaments are convenient to forward the love story, they have possibilities of actually happening and inspire readers to believe that out of desperation arises one’s correct destination.
The story begins with Nikki Powell, an insurance claims adjuster from Georgia who is attempting to make her way to Sheridan, Montana to bury her deceased father and settle his affairs. She is bounced from the evening flight to the transfer point of Bozeman and moved to a flight on the following day.
Meanwhile she loses her wallet while stuck at the airport in Denver. Wade Knowlton, a probate attorney from Virginia City, Montana, is also stuck at the same Denver airport but chooses to rent a car rather wait for the night flight to Bozeman and gives up his seat for Nikki. Chivalry knows no bounds when Nikki needs to borrow money for a hotel room in Bozeman and the only contact she has in Montana is the law firm of Evans and Knowlton referred to her by the mortuary. The connections are crystal clear for the reader and it’s ironic when Nikki calls Wade Knowlton for assistance.
He picks her up from the hotel in Bozeman and the author lets the laws of attraction do its part. Their flirtation is entertaining for spectators and though the characters may not realize where this will lead, the reader certainly sees where they’re going. Vane makes incremental deposits in the reader’s mind about each of the characters back stories. The deposits never overwhelm the reader but provide a fair amount of knowledge about Nikki and Wade to reel readers into their lives.
Part of the fun is seeing how the couple will meld their lives together, though neither one makes it their objective. Nature takes its course nonetheless. The Knowlton’s become the family that Nikki wished she had, and Wade finds in Nikki the one woman who could help him straighten his priorities and share his joys with of living in the country.
Vane gives her characters ambitions that readers can relate to and indentify with the blocks and twists along their paths. The characters traits are qualities which female readers look for in themselves and their mate such as Nikki’s independent mind and will to persevere through rough times, and Wade’s gentlemanly manners, sensual caresses, and flirtatious nature along with a pair of sturdy shoulders to lean on in times of defeat. Life meets romantic ideals in Slow Hand while keeping the characters down to earth as they’re dropped into realistic situations that readers could imagine happening to themselves.