Stroke of Luck

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 19 Mar 2019

Member Reviews

Will has taken over running the Sterling Guest Ranch and is looking to make the changes that he always wanted but could never get his father to agree to.   Opening early as a favor to a family friend was probably not his best course of action especially when he finds himself without a cook.

After 20 years Poppy has recently moved back to her hometown to open a catering business.    When Will needs a cook she takes the job with the intention of showing him what  he missed when he broke her teenage heart so many years earlier.

Guests are being  murdered and with the approaching snow storm there is no way out.     Will and Poppy must uncover the truth of who is behind the crimes before they become the next victims.

This is a slow burn romance filled with suspense and twists.    I enjoyed the first book in this new series and look forward to Garrett’s story which is coming up next.  I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
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BJ Daniels and her series, Sterling's Montana, is one filled of intrigue, lies and love in between. We have Poppy who has never forgotten about Will Sterling and the little crush she had. As adults now she is determined to make him see how mature she is and getting her true love. Will is trying his best to make the ranch a sucess as a place to have fun away from all the technology but so far luck is not on his side. Holding a retreat right now might not seem like a good idea but he's trying really hard to juggle everything. BJ Daniels sure did a good way tempting Will into love and making him see Poppy in a different light. The first in the series starting of good filled with secrets, love and hello some really good food in this book.

"I received an eBook copy from the publisher for the purpose of an honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own."
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I have read many books by B.J. Daniels over the years but I haven't really reviewed any on my blog.



I usually enjoy her books very much but I found this one lacking in the romance part. There was just a tiny bit of romance but the suspense was good. I did like the main characters.



Would I read the next book? It was good enough for me to read the next book in the series.



I am going to give this 3 out of 5.
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Wil has been waiting to prove himself by running the family's ranch like his father had. He definitely got more than he bargained for after opening early for an old family friend. Jack is the owner of On The Fly and he wanted a business retreat for key employees. He got more than he bargained for also.

When Boots, the ranch cook broke his leg Wil had to find a replacement quickly. When his brother recommend Poppy, their old childhood friend that was back after 20 years who had started her own catering business, Wil asked her. The only problem with that was Poppy had a childhood crush on him way back when and has never forgot him, is she out to make trouble for him now that he needs her help.

Will they have time to see what could be between them before everything else happens at the ranch? They only have 4 days but a LOT can happen in that time frame. Will Wil fall for her and will her plan work or does it backfire on her?

This book has suspense, action, twists and turns and danger.
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I think this is going to be a great series. I enjoyed this book very much. Great story line, engaging characters. It was hard to put it down. I look forward to reading the others in this series.
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This is the first book I have read of B.J.Daniels and didn’t know what to expect, I admit I fell in love with cover and the blurb. So I was expecting a cowboy romance, but this was so much more. We have Poppy who has come back to Whitefish Montana to start her catering business. 
Will runs the Guest Ranch Retreat, and its his first year and they have opened early for special client. A four day work retreat, what could go wrong. The cook has broken his leg, and Will’s brother Garrett recommends Poppy Carmichael. Poppy and Will know each other from when they kids and hadn’t parted well.
So we have employees who don’t won’t to be there, Poppy is determined to get back at Will. Then there Dorothea who has lived on the Sterling Ranch as a housekeeper walking around saying there is something bad going to happen.
That’s just the beginning, and this book kept me gripped until the end I did not want to miss anything. It was well worth the read and I want to go back to Sterling Ranch for another adventure. This had it all, a handsome cowboy, love, murder and mayhem and right up my street. It is told in multiple povs so you get a real feel for whats going on. I’m hooked on B.J.Daniels, so go and read it yourself.
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With a great mix of Romance and Suspense, Stroke of Luck let you at the same time wanting to cheer for Will and Poppy romance and discover about all the weird thing that are happening on the story. Will is your typical charming cowboy and Poppy is the feisty heroine bend on revenge. It’ll keep you guessing what comes next!
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This is my first book by this author and it won’t be my last. Will is in desperate need of a cook for his lodge that he inherited. He is hosting a corporate retreat and his cook has a broken foot. He hires Poppy his ex and she is out to prove that she can win him back through her cooking. The weather in Montana is unpredictable and it is March and they are snowed in. Will these two rekindle their teenage love?  How will a murder at the lodge impact them? Pick up this book if you like a little murder mystery with your western.
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Je ne connaissais pas la plume de l'auteur mais j'avais envie de découvrir cette histoire car le résumé m'a donné envie d'en savoir plus. BJ Daniels nous a concocté une romance avec une pincée de suspense et une grand dose de thriller . Le style est addictif et les personnages semblent tous cacher une faille.

Will Sterling est à la tête d'un ranch qui lui a été légué par son père et alors qu'il va ouvrir plus tôt à la clientèle, son cuisinier se casse une jambe et le met dans la panade. Big Jack , le patron de Over the fly a décidé d'emmener en séminaire 9 de ses employés et ce séjour ne sera pas de tout repos. Sur les conseils de son frère Garrett , il va donc faire appel à Poppy, une jeune femme qu'il n'a pas revu depuis 20 ans mais ils ne se sont pas quittés en très bon terme. Mettant son ego de côté , il va devoir affronter ses erreurs passés et ne penser qu'à son ranch. Mais l'arrivée des clients et de la jeune femme va déclencher des événements en chaîne . Le jeune homme ne s'attendait pas à ce que Poppy soit devenue une superbe femme , capable de lui couper le souffle. Si dans le passé , il n'avait pas le temps pour une histoire d'amour, qu'en sera t-il à présent. Quant à ses clients, la tension est clairement palpable entre eux et la tempête va sévir au sens propre comme au sens figuré?

Quand un meurtre survient, les doutes éclatent au grand jour et tout le monde semble être un suspect potentiel. Big Jack semble avoir imposé ce fameux séminaire à la toute dernière minute et cela a donc engendré de vives tensions. Ce patron semble aussi avoir des suspicions sur ses employés et ce huit clos semble être le moment parfait pour dénouer les mensonges et les trahisons. Ses fils ne sont pas en reste. Lamar est le plus présent dans les scènes car il veut reprendre l'entreprise familiale afin que cette dernière ne s'effondre pas. Il a noté des défaillances mais son père semble mettre tout en oeuvre pour ne pas entamer un dialogue approfondi avec lui. Son frère Mick semble lui plus se soucier de certaines conquêtes que des affaires ou de ce séminaire. On a dû mal à se faire une idée de ses intentions car telle une anguille , il nous file souvent entre les doigts. Lexi est une des employés et son attitude est dès le début suspicieux. Elle semble craindre quelqu'un ou quelque chose mais pas moyen de savoir ce qu'il en est. Elle ne s'ouvre à personne et seules les expressions sur son visage trahissent ce qu'elle ressent. D'autres suspects potentiels , tels que Ruby, Kirk, Channing, Allison et Dean , seront aussi de la partie et tous les doutes sont donc permis.

Poppy Carmichael a espéré en revenant sur ses terres natales pouvoir revenir dans le ranch où elle a connu des jours heureux . Malgré une fin douloureuse qui lui a brisé le coeur, elle pense tenir sa vengeance quand un coup de fil lui apprend qu'on a besoin de ses services. Elle se lance dans un service de traiteur avec sa meilleure amie Kara et elle accepte bien évidemment de venir faire la cuisine pendant 5 petits jours. Il s'en passera des choses en si peu de temps et si son plan de départ impliquer une vengeance, il se pourrait bien que son coeur se rappelle à elle. Elle sera une cuisinière hors pair et Dorothea la soupçonne même de faire preuve de "sorcellerie" pour apporter le mauvais oeil sur le ranch. Elle devrait être sur ces gardes car la femme de 50 ans ne compte pas la laisser sans surveillance. C'est à la fois marrant et inquiétant car évidemment , elle n'a aucun pouvoir magique si ce n'est celui de ravir les palais de ses convives. Face à Will, elle va de nouveau perdre ses moyens et sombrer encore plus sous le charme de cette homme qui l'a pourtant blessée. L'amour n'est pas prévu au programme et les meurtres ne vont rien arranger.

Bref, je découvre un roman de BJ Daniels et j'ai été conquise par la plume de l'auteur. Stroke of luck est un roman aux multiples facettes qui saura nous tenir en haleine que ce soit pour la romance ou pour le thriller. La tempête fera rage et l'enquête sera palpitante jusqu'à la révélation finale.
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Stroke of Luck 

**received an ARC in exchange for an honest review**

3.5⭐️⭐️⭐️

A good romantic suspense book that will have you interested from the beginning. You are introduced to a few different characters but are immediately drawn to Poppy and Will. They have known one another for years but it didn’t end well. Now Poppy is back and ready to change things. But is Will the same as he was back than or has he changed? And does Will finally see Poppy in a different light?

As they try an navigate their feelings, they also must figure out what is happening at the ranch. Strange things continue to happen and threaten the group who is staying there. Will they be able to figure who is behind everything and find a way to be with one another?
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I really loved the plot in Stroke of Luck. I was in the dark about who did what and who was who for most of the book. The two main characters (Will and Poppy) have a history that is playing out as danger, tension and death stalk the Sterling Montana's Ranch season opening. This is a great start to a new series with Luck being a big part of the story. There is a small touch of the paranormal in the story line as there is one character who believes in curses. 

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review
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I have an affection for cowboys that knows no boundaries, so when I saw this book available for request at Netgalley, I jumped on it.  If you could look at my Netgalley shelf (and well, honestly, my physical bookshelf at home), you'd see exactly how much this appeals to me.  Also, I've heard a ton of good things about B. J. Daniels over the years and I thought that I should finally check her out for myself.

Anyway, I'm not sure where to start this review.  So much happened in this book!  I went in expecting a straight forward romance, had no idea there was a mystery angle to it.  Somehow, I must have completely missed 'killer' in the blurb.  Note to self: read the whole description, please and thank you!  However, this is a good thing because romantic suspense has become a favorite genre of mine.

The author does an excellent job of keeping the tension tight and keeping the reader from figuring out exactly who the bad guy is.  I went back and forth between suspecting two or three people the entire book.  Admittedly, I was not expecting it to be who it was in the end, either.

On the romantic side, the tension was high as well.  Loved the back and forth between Poppy and Will.  Poppy is such an upbeat and fun woman, exactly the kind of person I'd want to hang out with.  Especially with the way she cooks!  Will is a total cowboy, through and through, but he's not completely immune to Poppy's charms either.  They are definitely meant for each other.

Okay, and I have a confession: I love a good cover and this one is gorgeous.  All dark and broody with a handsome cowboy, can't get any better, right?  But is it just me or does the cowboy look like Zachary Quinto in a Stetson?  Not that I'm complaining, but I was curious to see if anyone else thought the same.  Now, on to the next in the series because I can't wait to see what else the Sterling brothers got up to while I was away.
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Will and Poppy have a history where he broke her heart at a young age and she never got over it.  He knows he did her wrong, but doesn't know how to fix it.  When he calls on her for help, twenty years later, he hopes that they can be friendly and professional.  Poppy accepts his job offer, but plans retribution for him hurting her when they were younger.  Little do either of them know that a sinister plan is set in motion and they might not make it out alive.
  A romance that is long in the making, and just when they think they can be more, the retreat she is cooking for and he is responsible for throws all the guests and staff into a mysterious plot of whodunit.  When people start getting murdered and buildings start burning down, they all have to try to stay alive and wonder if they are safe.  Whether Will will be able to keep himself and Poppy, who he finally realizes that he has feelings for, safe is the question.
  Mystery, intrigue, suspicion and romance all play a huge part in this story.  The supporting characters in this book made the intrigue that much better.  The plot twists, while some were expected, others were pleasantly surprising.  I can't wait to read more books in this series and find out what happens in the future with Will and Poppy, as well as his brothers.
  I received an ARC in exchange for an honest, voluntary review.
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Captivated yet again by another suspense filled getaway that has romance woven through it. I also noticed it a bit more this time too that it came at just the right points with the melting part at the end in a fashion that did not have to have it told in pages that luxurious moment. What was supposed to be sweet revenge persay turns out to be something else and bites both Poppy and Will. Something else goes down that pulls the reader to the edge and keeps them poised there tighter and tighter as each page is turned. Devoured from beginning to end I will look forward to the next one and see where that brother ends up.
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3 1/2 stars

B.J. Daniels is known for her line of romantic suspense with Harlequin, and I have enjoyed past books of hers. Stroke of Luck, which begins her new Sterling’s Montana series, misses the mark in two respects for me.

First off, the characterization frequently felt “off.” When I read a rugged cowboy thinking that a meatball is “divine,” I figure that someone in the publication of this book wasn’t paying attention. I don’t know anyone in my life who would say “divine” about anything without it being mockingly said, women as well as men. Also, there’s some confusion as to how he felt about 12-year old Poppy when he was 15. He makes comments that seemed a little out of character, which made me scratch my head.

Secondly, and this is something I’ve mentioned before if you’ve read any of my reviews or followed my blog, is how difficult it is to pull off romantic suspense/thrillers/etc. If you are in danger are you really going to fool around? If your barn is on fire, your horses in the barn, are you really going to stand there trying to figure out whether you want to continue having sex or are you going to save your horses and see if you can save your barn? That is really a non-question for me, but not so for our hero.

Likewise, if you’re in a room of potential murderers, where are your thoughts going to be? Hopefully on self-preservation.

All of that said, the mystery and suspense element was great. The mystery felt a little like that Agatha Christie story, And Then There Were None, in which people are in a secluded area where they can’t escape and begin dying. It’s such a great plot that it’s fun to see it in different settings.

This was one mystery that I didn’t guess right away and that’s why I don’t want to be too hard on the book. The writing and characterization = meh, but the mystery = so, so good.

Stroke of Luck is told in multiple povs. I’m not usually a fan of this for the reason that I think it detracts from characterization as it does here, but for the mystery aspect, I let it go.

On a side note, a very, very side note, I wasn’t thrilled about Poppy’s menus. The elements sounded good on their own but put together all sounded too sweet: sweet meat glaze, sweet glaze on veggies, sweet potatoes, dessert. Yikes.

This is recommended for die-hard Daniels’ fans, readers who love Montana, readers who will overlook the romance aspects in order to enjoy the mystery. Don’t read this if you tend to eye-roll when romance is placed above the mystery and makes the hero and heroine stupid because your eyes could get stuck that way.

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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It's been a while since I read a BJ Daniels book and I wasn't disappointed with the start of her new Sterlings Montanna Series. Poppy and Will first met when he was 15 and she was 12. He was her first love and for a 15 year old boy this was overwhelming and he's always regretted how he treated her. Fast forward 20 years and she's recently moved back to town and started a catering business. He and his brothers run the family business, running cattle and guest dude ranching. He's responsible for the guest ranch and his cook has just broken his leg so with his housekeepe Dorothea's recommendation he hires Poppy to take over for an early season group. It's only for 4 days and Will figures no big deal. For Poppy it's the opportunity she's been waiting for.

Unbeknownst to either, the group visiting (run by a former guest) is riddled with financial and personal issues. The son's who work in the business with their father are at odds about a variety of things. The employees ordered to attend this Spring retreat aren't happy to be there. One thing leads to another and a murder happens, then a second followed by a third murder! The guests along with Will, Poppy, Dorothea and the staff are all on edge. A quick-,oving Spring blizzard strands them and there is no access out for them and in for law enforcement.

There is murder, suspense and romance packed in to the 4 days that Poppy and Will are reunited. How it all plays out and who's responsible for the murder and mayhem keeps you on the edge of your seat. All in all, a great read and I'm excited to get to the next book in the series.

I received a free ARC Ebook from NetGalley and Harlequin Publishing for my honest review.
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I received a free, advanced copy of this book from NetGalley.com. This is my unbiased and voluntary review.

What started out as a cowboy second chance romance (at twelve years old, leaving in a nearby cabin, while her father worked for the forest service, Poppy Carmichael had fallen in love with the Sterling Montana Guest Ranch, Kate Sterling, who embraced the motherless girl and taught her how to cook and fifteen year old cowboy Will Sterling, who ignored her), escalated into a page turning murder mystery. Years have passed. The three Sterling brothers are now grown, having lost their mother years ago and their father the previous year. Will, the oldest was going to run the guest ranch, while his brothers ran the ranch. This was to be the first year when he was in charge of the guest ranch and things are not starting out well. One of the cabins has a leak in the roof, their cook broke his leg and he had been talked into having guest earlier than they normally do, because the request was from an old friend of their father's. Needing a cook, Garrett, his brother, suggests that he call Poppy, who has returned to town and opened a catering business. Desperate, he calls her, hoping she doesn't still hold a grudge against him. She accepts, planning revenge, having him fall in love with her and her cooking and then breaking his heart. When the guest arrive for a team building long weekend, none of them look happy to be there. As Will and Poppy dance around each other, someone starts to pull dangerous pranks and then there is a murder and a massive snow storm. I was reminded of Agatha Christie's "And Then There Were None". Wonderful characters and a riveting plot had me staying up much pasted my bed time, but I knew I would not be able to sleep until I finished it. Looking forward to reading the next book in the series.
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Wil and Poppy had a young love years ago and it ended on a bad note, Wil broke Poppys heart and she was determined not to let him do it again. However things do not always go as planned. Wil is having as a bit of bad luck he is running his families ranch and his cook gets hurt so he needs Poppy I mean he could handle four days with her, and so he thinks. As these do spend time together things start heating up but do they really have time to devote to it because they are surrounded by danger and suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Enjoy!
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This was a very good book and my first read by B.J. Daniels. It had a great friends-to-lovers feel and the setting was captivating! It definitely is a good read for fans of romantic suspense!
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Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) provided by the Author and Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an fair and honest review.

Fair and honest review. Well, I didn't really like this one, which is really tough to say because B.J. Daniels is an author I've read and loved for years. "Stroke of Luck" just wasn't up to her usual high standard. It has a great plot but the characters are stilted and one dimensional. I just wasn't feeling the happy childhood summer or the young teen angst that was the foundation of this couple or that Will is a confirmed bachelor that no woman has been able to lasso. The mystery/suspense was a great element. If the first 80% of the book was as good as the last 20% it would have been fantastic.

Poppy Montgomery is back in Whitefish, MT after 20 years. She loved this area when she was a child and has decided to start her catering business here. The area isn't the only thing she loved and left. 12 year old Poppy left the love of her young life and the parting wasn't pretty. Is she now back to exercise a ghost or rekindle a past love? Or exact a little revenge?

Will Sterling is now the sole operator of the Sterling Guest Ranch after the death of his father. He is looking forward to making much needed improvements to the rustic ranch experience that his father ran. When he is requested to open the ranch early to accommodate a corporate retreat by an old family friend and for a substantial amount of money, he goes against his gut feeling and opens the ranch in March even though the weather can be unpredictable. When his cook breaks his leg, Dorothea, the housekeeper, is sure nothing good is going to come from this event.

Poppy agrees to cook for Will's retreat guests, the money he is offering is very good and it also gives her the opportunity to implement her plan for Will to fall for her and then to break his heart. But, apparently, it isn't true about the way to a man's heart being through his stomach, because although Will is enjoying the food, he hasn't succumbed to anything more than her culinary seduction.

Big Jack's company retreat was off to a bad start. His employees didn't want to be there and they didn't even like each other. With a Montana blizzard bearing down on them, suspicion and mistrust turn deadly catching Will and Poppy in the middle.
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