Cover Image: The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony

The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony

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Member Reviews

What a super cute romance.  Its a sweet, clean, fun romance.  just right for the days when you are looking for soemething easy and fun to read.   

Thank you to #netgalley for the ARC which did not impact my review.  

3.5 stars rounded to 4.
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The Gunslingers Guide to Avoiding Matrimony is set in the Wild West in the fictional town of Desolation, Colorado. Adam, a gunslinger who is running from a bounty hunter, finds himself in Desolation by accident and upon arrival stumbles into a big town wedding… getting himself unintentionally married to Nora, an independent woman who only wants to be married on paper for personal reasons, but doesn't necessarily care to have a relationship. 

The town has one rule for newcomers: In 30 days you can either get a job or get married. If neither option is met, get out of town.  Since Adam doesn't want to be hitched, he tries everything he can to secure a job and annul the marriage, while Nora tries everything she can to convince him to stay married without telling him her personal reasons for wanting a marriage on paper. Banter and flirtation ensues between the two, giving them undeniable chemistry.

This book was really cute and pretty silly.  I loved the banter between Adam and Nora.  They had great chemistry, despite not really wanting to be together, at first.  It was funny seeing Adam fail at job after job, while falling for Nora.  This book made me laugh at the ridiculous situations in which Adam found himself.

This was a throwback for me. Growing up I loved reading Western books, such as Annie Oakley and Buffalo Bill biographies, or the Little House on the Prairie series, so it was nice getting back to some reading roots.

This is the 2nd book in the Gunslinger series, but each book can be read as a standalone novel.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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As soon as I saw Michelle McLean's was back with another romance set in Desolation, I was smashing that "request" for the ARC. As I said last year in my review for her first in this series (Hitched to the Gunslinger), Westerns REALLY aren't my romance subgenre of choice. For some reason, all I can think is how bad everyone's breath would smell (weirdly, other historical time periods don't bother me in the same way. Dunno why). BUT McLean is such a smart writer with great characters and brilliant, funny dialogue, I was hooked. I appreciated the ALMOST slow-burn pacing in this one, and the nontraditional heroine. I liked that the 3rd act crisis was organic and made sense for all the characters. 

She's done it again. Huzzah and cheers!

Thanks to NetGalley and Engtangled Publishing for the ebook ARC. All opinions are mine alone :)
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“Darlin’, I’ve wanted you from the moment you dropped a body at my feet. And I knew you were mine from the moment you tossed that bar of soap at me in the bathhouse, trying to get a look at what I was packing.”

Adam Brady, a stressed out, on the run gunslinger with an unfortunate habit of making horrible decisions, has lived his life by two rules: Avoid life-threatening injuries whenever possible, and avoid marriage at all costs. Both rules fly right out the window the moment he stumbles into Desolation. And into the reluctant arms of Nora Schumacher, a walking contradiction who has him tied up in knots from the moment she drops a body at his feet. 

This book, which is book two in the Gunslinger’s series, worked just fine as a stand alone seeing as I have not read book one. And I devoured this story! It was so fun and laugh out loud funny! I loved Nora, who is such a bad ass, and I loved Adam for seeing her fire and determination as something to be admired as opposed to critiqued. Here here for strong women and the men that love them for it! 👏🏻 

Thank you so much to Netgalley, Entangled Publishing,  and the author for the complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
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I don't read many western romances, but the premise for this one sounded fun, so I decided to try it. I'm happy I did! This was a great romance, that I would definitely recommend trying!

I received an e-ARC from the publisher.
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The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony was one helluva good story and good addition to the Gunslinger series. Gunslinger gambler Adam Brady stumbles upon the town of Desolation and can’t believe his good fortune. He’s got a marshal on his trail and hopes he can hang his hat here knowing this is the place where outlaws can ‘retire’ and live in peace. What he doesn’t know is that Desolation has a new rule and that is to either get married or get a job. He has his own rule to never get married. Ironically, he stumbles upon a mass marriage ceremony and accidentally gets married! Now he’s finding all kinds of ways to unmarry himself from a tempting and beautiful woman named Nora Schumacher. Nora isn’t averse to being married, just the husband that comes with it. She hopes she can keep the marriage and get rid of the man. She figures it may take some finagling from friends to convince Adam to sign the marriage certificate and make it all legal.

This story was a hoot when Adam tried job after job, and for funny circumstances, gets fired from each one. Nora tries to persuade Adam and their banter turns flirtatious and tempting but he still isn’t biting. Each has a secret why he wants out and she wants in. When both secrets are revealed to one another they think they have it all figured out only to realize that Adam’s past now rolls into town. Adam is in trouble and when he takes it upon himself to take his trouble and himself out of the picture, the town folks rally to help him and Nora get out of this impossible situation. I loved that the town folk play a big part in this story, along with livestock, liven up the story with humorous scenes. This story is second in the series but can definitely be read as a standalone. I just think if you want to have more fun and enjoy another rom-com, you’ll definitely enjoy Hitched to the Gunslinger. The author wrote a funny situation for this story and made it a fun and entertaining read. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Desolation.
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(4.5 stars rounded up to a 5)

The Gunslinger's Guide to Avoiding Matrimony is a historical fiction romance by Michelle McLean, and the second book in her Gunslinger series. The ebook version is 368 pages. We follow our two main characters with third-person points-of-view.

Adam Brady is a gunslinger who is desperate to retire. He lives his life by two rules: avoid life-threatening situations at all costs and never under any circumstances get married. While running from a bounty hunter, he stumbled into the town of Desolation--right into the middle of a big town wedding. After accidentally marrying Nora Schumacher he learns about a new rule in town: gunslingers are welcome here, so long as they either get a job or marry. But he doesn't want to be married, and is determined to find some kind of work he can actually handle.

This was a pretty charming book overall. It was a fun romp and I ended up staying up late to finish it! I like the author's brand of humor and she also does a great job with her steamier scenes. I recently found out the author also writes contemporary romance under the pen name Kira Archer, so I'll have to check her out there too.

Though this book is the second in the series, you can absolutely read it as a standalone. There are references to what happened in the first book, but someone only reading this one shouldn't get confused by them as they're brief. I continue to love the side characters in this series, and I hope we get books that feature them in the future (especially Preacher and the mayor).

Tropes in this book include: cowboys, gunslingers, strangers to lovers, enemies to lovers, forced proximity, strong women

CW: death of parent (referenced), alcoholic parent, guns, gambling, abduction

Special thanks to Entangled: Amara, Entangled Publishing, and NetGalley for providing an eARC of this book for me to review. All opinions contained herein are my own.
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3.5 stars 

I had read the previous book on a whim and was thrilled to see there was going to be more. 

I really liked Nora and Adam. They’re both stubborn, good, and loyal. I did enjoy their bickering (at first) and did see the chemistry right away, yet some things just dragged. Of course seeing more of the town, as well as Gray and Mercy was a lot of fun. 

Plot wise, it was okay. I struggled with the repetitive feeling of Adam getting fired, Nora asking him to sign, and the constant constant constant bickering. I really wanted a bit of honestly, and yes yes, I understand you don’t spill your secrets to a stranger, but it felt like something could have been managed. Especially since the story never felt like it found it’s rhythm. 

Overall, the characters were great and it was easy to root for them. If there is more to the series, I’ll be reading. 

**Huge thanks to the publisher for providing the arc free of charge**
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While I would normally judge a book by its cover and pass this one by, I'm glad I didn't!

This is my first time reading either a historical romance or a romance book with people on the cover rather than cartoons. I can firmly say I will be adding both into my rotation because of this book! While this book is the second in a series, enough background context was provided and focus was put on the main characters of this story, so I didn't feel like I was missing out on anything or late to the party.

This story follows Adam, a newly retired gunslinger who stumbles into the town of Desolation, and Nora, a seamstress and herbalist trying to keep hold of her family property. This couple falls into an accidental marriage, with a will-they-won't-they storyline following for much of the book. This relationship hinges on Adam and the past that may be catching up with him in Desolation.

I really enjoyed the story and felt like I connected with the character of Nora. She was very intelligent and down to earth while conveying the vulnerability she felt because of the people and situations around her. Adam was a very well thought out response to her as a character with his humor and quick wit to help balance her out with backstory ti explain his hesitations. 

The one change I would have made was to this book would have been to shorten some of the will-they-won't-they portion of the book, as it ended up feeling a bit repetitive by the end, and made the final conflict and resolution feel a bit rushed. Other than that I enjoyed everything about this book.

I will be returning to Desolation with the first book as soon as I can get my hands on it and eagerly await a third installment!

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Thank you to Entangled Publishing and Netgalley for the advanced review copy.
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The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony was a funny romantic comedy that takes place in the West.  It was a lighthearted read that was terrific.  The main characters were well developed as well as the story line.  I loved rules of the town called Desolation.  If you want a good summer read, I recommend this story.
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A steamy western?  Yep!  This was a very entertaining, and yes, steamy, romance that caused a couple of giggles and a couple of "oh, mys".  Fast read that i've already recommended to my circle.
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I loved this!! I love a good western romance(which I just recently learned is a real genre lol) and this one didn’t let me down! Nora was an absolute hoot.
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I didn't like it as much as the first book but it was still a really funny read with a very humorous cast of characters. And it had a wonderful ending. Historical Western Rom-Com about a retired gunslinger/gambler just wanting to find peace and escaping an overzealous marshal. But he comes into town at the wrong time and ends up married to a local woman who needs to find a husband to keep her ranch out of her drunk father's hands. But he doesn't want to be married so the antics they put him through all the while fighting the attraction to his new wife are so funny.
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This is one of my first western romances and I think I’m a convert. Near ruination just hits DIFFERENT with unhinged pistol popping cowboys idk. Whatever it is it’s a whole mood. 

Seriously the sexual tension is THROUGH the barn I mean the man sucked out a splinter from her finger???? While making tender but burning eye contact???? While whispering sweet nothings to soothe her pain???? Giddy on UP. They did NOT paint westerns like this in Back to the Future 3.

I really adored how Nora was totally capable but also carried the weight of the world on her shoulders. A lot of the book was Adam trying to relieve some of that pressure on her. Cuddling, coddling, copulating. The domestic bliss between the two had me feeling REAL single. Her astonishment when he was fixing up things around the house nearly took me out. Then there was a scene that I thought would be a breakup but ended in him opening his arms for a hug. And sex. So yeah we won.  

The little moments between these two were everything, especially since they were married but not and were trying to fight the consummation. The bathtub scene where Nora tries to seduce Adam was just so good. “Yes I’ll do the cooking, Yes I’ll do the cleaning,” she said with her whole chest. 

The premise of the series is so fun and book 2 definitely delivered on the comedy promised on the cover!! I didn’t read the summary, so the way they ended up getting married was even better. These feel super fresh and modern, while still making me want to get ravished in a haystack and order a sarsaparilla from a questionably clean glass. 

If you’re someone who gets tripped up by modern language in historicals, skip it and save yourself the torment. But personally, I loved it as I’m not sure I want a truly authentic western novel lmao. From page one, the modern language made the barrier of entry far lower for me. 

Doc and Martha better be next!!! And Preacher has me INTRIGUED. I’m going back to book one and I’ll be on the lookout for book three!
 
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5   🌶🌶🌶/5

My only critique is that I hoped and expected the steam to give a bit more than we got. It still had a couple good scenes, but they weren’t that explicit and not too creative. He never went down on her and the positions were typical. I’m my opinion, the tension was almost hotter than the climax. 

Thanks to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for a free copy. All opinions are honest and my own.
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A reverse grumpy-sunshine story with a twist!  Adam Brady is a wanted man…and yet he is charming and has a generally positive outlook on life. Nora is used to shouldering responsibility. When they meet, sparks fly amid a flurry of misunderstandings. McLean paints a vivid backdrop of the old west, a colorful cast of characters, and a heartwarming story of acceptance.
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This book is a romcom and western expertly intertwined. If you don’t read westerns, I implore you to try this series. I instantly fell in love with this wily bunch of townspeople. The plot is flawlessly comical and endearingly romantic. The book is fast-paced, and I didn’t want it to end! I love that the characters from the first book showed up again. However, Adam and Nora’s story stands on its own. So If you’re looking for a laugh-out-loud HEA with a fantastic storyline to boot.. look no further. Loved it!!! ❥ Highly recommend!!! Lisa
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The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony by Michelle McLean is a light-hearted romantic comedy taking place in the old West. Adam Brady is a gunslinger and a gambler. There is a price on his head. A lawman named Spurlock is chasing him and he is doing his best to not be caught. He stumbles upon an isolated town called Desolation in which most of the inhabitants are wanted by the law. He thinks maybe he can make a life here as he is sick of his old one. Something is going on, he can’t tell what. As luck would have it, it is a mass wedding ceremony. He is standing next to a very tall woman and apparently says the wrong thing at the wrong time because next thing he knows there is a boy wanting him to sign a paper. It is a marriage certificate. He politely refuses and then listens to the sheriff speak: the rules for the town state one has to be married or have a job within 30 days of arriving. Easy enough: he will get a job. He doesn’t want to be married.

This is a cross between a cowboy romance and a beach read. It is entertaining with all the varied characters one would expect to find in an Old West town: the madam, the doc, the preacher, the sheriff, who it turns out would be a very wanted criminal if the world didn’t believe he was dead, and many more, including the town drunk. Nora is the daughter of the town drunk. She lives in a house that her grandparents built on a few acres of land. All that is left of the small ranch her grandmother had owned. Her father had gradually sold off the rest of it to fund his bad habits: drinking and gambling. It was all left to her by her mother, but she can’t actually claim it until she is married or reaches 30. She has the deed hidden, but who knows how long it will be safe. She needs a husband so she can change the deed. Preferably the husband wouldn’t stick around. She is a terrific character: solid, hard-working, and one of the boys. So, when Adam stumbles into town, he appears to be the perfect husband. Lots of fun is guaranteed in the next thirty days! Such a cute, relaxing story! A great read as a break from more serious stuff!

I was invited to read The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony by Amara, through Netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are mine. #netgalley #amara #michellemclean #thegunslingersguidetoavoidingmatrimony
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A funnier rom-com that had some laugh out loud moments, witty banter, and romance/sex scenes that ratcheted up the chemistry without overwhelming the book. It did drag a little in the middle for me, but the side characters were entertaining and their group plot to get Adam fired from every job was funny.
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I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of The Gunslinger's Guide to Avoiding Matrimony. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Netgalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC for providing an ARC to review.

I went into this novel not expecting much but was so happily surprised. Adam and  Nora are a fun and cute couple who have oodles of chemistry and charm. The fun quirkiness of the town of Desolation and the fun townspeople make me want to continue reading this series. If you are looking for a romance full of witty banter and entertaining characters, this is the book for you. I give this book an unexpected 4/5 stars.
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I received an ARC of this book for an honest review. This book initially interested me but I didn't love the hero I feel like Adam just couldn't make up his mind on what to do about Nora. Adam did not want to be married but he falls in love with Nora, they accidentally end up married then he still intends to leave her. Nora knew that Adam doesn't want to stay married but despite knowing that she still wants to keep him in a marriage he doesn't want. The book was enjoyable so I got through the whole story. There were moments of comedic relief in this story that I really liked and over all I like the authors writing style. I liked other books in this series by Michelle Maclean but this one was not my favorite. I will  be picking up the next book in the series still.
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