Cover Image: The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony

The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony

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Member Reviews

Historical cowboy rom-com with lots of humor and heat
I loved the last book in this series so much, I knew that I needed to read this one as well. Not surprisingly the author delivered! Adam Brady is funny without trying to be. Just living his life appears to be an exercise in futility. He admits he makes bad decisions that often have costly consequences. When he arrives by accident to the hidden and obscure town of Desolation, he mistakenly gets married to Nora Schumacher, a 25yo spinster who is “scraping 6 feet tall” and “built sturdier than most.” Problem is he wants NOT to be married at all, he has legitimate reasons which he won’t share, while Nora wants desperately to BE married and likewise is not in a sharing mood. What the townsfolk do to help out Nora is hilarious until Adam figures out things on his own. 
Whew! Once they accept their attraction to one another, the steam lifts right off the pages. If you like cowboy books with heat and humor you will want to read this series. So good. I volunteered to review an ARC of this book through Entangled/NetGalley.
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A down on his luck gunslinger with a bounty on his head finds himself in a town that promises he’s welcome if he either A. Gets a job or B. Gets married. Adam is dead set against marriage but fate forces his hand when he wanders into a big town wedding and finds himself married to our heroine, Nora. 

Dear reader, had the book stopped there, I probably would have loved it. Unfortunately the first….50-ish percent is just back and forth on whether or not the MC’s are married or want to be married. I’m fine with a bit of back and forth. But to spend most of the first half dead set against being together and then out of nowhere BOOM they’re all for each other? I didn’t enjoy that. 

The writing was well done and the premise was interesting, but I just don’t think the plot worked for me in the long run. 

Thank you to Netgalley and Entangled Publishing for an e-ARC! All thoughts and opinions are my own!
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I really like McLean's writing. The writing is so witty and fun that it makes this a fast read. 
Plus this is super funny! 
Those two things aside, I did feel like it took the characters too long to get together to the point that their arguing about why they should or shouldn't marry started to become repetitive.
The chemistry was there but it was too much of a frustrating slow burn for my taste.
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What a fun return to Desolation. Who could help but fall in love with both Adam and Nora. Their hilarious encounters start right from their first meeting and continue throughout the story. I just loved their teasing of each other and trying to get under the other's skin. And the more they are around each other, their attraction to each other becomes more and more apparent. There is also a great mix of side characters that add to the enjoyment. I'm looking forward to additional books in this series.
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It's a beautifully written Western Historical Romance that will make you smile quite often. Both the main characters are adorable and their chemistry is just perfect. Adam Brady comes to Desolation quite by chance and decides to hide in this out-of-the-way, hidden town. He never expects to meet a beautiful young lady, Nora, and somehow, marry her without even knowing he was doing it. But that's exactly what happens and his new wife seems reluctant to get an annulment. Although he can't fathom why. In any case, he has no choice but to find permanent employment and get rid of his unwanted wife as soon as possible.

It's not that Nora wants Mr. Brady. It's just that she is in desperate need of a husband, but only temporarily. And this stranger from out of town seems like a perfect option. It will be easy to get rid of him once she has everything she needs to live a comfortable life without fear. Good thing, the whole town is willing to help her and Brady will find it very difficult to hold a job. He will have no other option but to register their marriage and that's all Nora needs. She never thought she would actually fall for her husband, who isn't really her husband. But that's exactly what happens and now, here they both are. Completely unsure of the future, can they take one day at a time and be happy for now?

As we know, nothing is ever so simple. You can expect some twists and turns before they can find their happy ending. And that's why romance is so much fun! I thoroughly enjoyed this book and gave it a 5-stars rating because nothing less would have done.
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Welcome back to Desperation, where notorious criminals can retire in peace. The two rules for newcomers are get a job or get married. Adam Brady stumbles upon Desolation and finds himself accidentally married to Nora Schumacher. His two rules are don't die and don't get married so as he tries to get unmarried, he struggles to find a job as he keeps getting fired. And, to add insult to injury, the town sheriff has a precarious past with Adam and does not take kindly to the newcomer. 

Nora has grown up in Desolation and tries her hardest to take care of the family land. The only problem is her father, who makes it incredibly difficult by gambling or drinking away all the money she earns. Her only solution is to get married, except none of the gentlemen in town want a wife who is smart-mouthed, strong-headed, and close to six feet tall. When Adam stumbles into town and they unknowingly participate in the town wedding, it's the perfect solution for her: she can use Adam to get what she needs to save her home and then he'll leave town.

Except, Adam doesn't leave town and the more time Nora spends with him, the more she realizes a real husband might not be what she wants, but it might be what she needs. Adam has his reasons for not ever wanting to marry and his biggest reason comes barging into town. As his past catches up to his present, Adam has to confront his fears to fight for his future: a life with Nora and the unexpected friends he's found in Desolation.

I first fell in love with Desolation in Hitched to the Gunslinger. McLean seamlessly weaves Grey's story and Adam's story together and brings us another stellar cowboy romance. I enjoyed getting to see more of the town and getting to know Nora and Adam. I adored both of them and of course, all the other townspeople in Desolation. This is book two and can be read as a standalone, but I highly recommend reading the first one because it's just as good. I can't wait to see what happens in the next book and have some predictions on who I think will be the next in the series.

Thank you NetGalley and Entangled for a copy of the book.
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All Adam Brady wants is to retire from his gunslinging ways and avoid the bounty hunter who’s searching for him. Nora Schumacher never thought marriage was in the cards because she thinks men only see her as one of the boys. She sets out to tie the knot with someone anyway because she needs to secure her future. But when this unlikely pair find themselves accidentally hitched, will their plans get in the way of their happiness, or will they discover maybe what they were avoiding is what they needed all along?

This was such a fun read!! Adam and Nora’s banter was top-tier and I loved how far they went to get what they each wanted. It was a pleasure to return to Desolation and see familiar characters and how their lives have changed since the last book. The rule of the town made for some very comical scenes and I loved how everyone was involved. The romance was great and I enjoyed the developments between Adam and Nora. The writing was witty and had me laughing out loud several times. If you’re looking for a historical romance that will make you laugh, I definitely recommend it!!

Content warnings: profanity, sexual scenes, and death

I received an eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Gunslinger/Gambler Adam Brady was on the run when he literally stumbled across the trail leading to the town of Desolation.  He had heard rumors of the town, that it was a good place for a gunslinger looking to retire, and he hopes those rumors are true because he is tired of running and fighting.  But Adam’s luck isn’t the best and his stay in Desolation will be anything but restful, especially since the sheriff is nonother than Quick Shot Woodson, a man who hates him, and then there is the small problem that he may or may not be married to a woman whose name he doesn’t even know!

Nora Schumacher is one of the few unmarried ladies in Desolation, but she doesn’t want to marry, but unfortunately, she needs a husband, at least a temporary husband, so she can claim her inheritance before her father gambles it away.  She goes into town to see if there are any men that might fit the bill as the preacher is performing a group wedding in the town square, but what she finds is her father passed out drunk in the tavern, she pulls him out, but is having trouble getting him the wagon.  That is when she meets Adam, he helps her get her dad in the wagon and then they start to quibble, barely noticing what is going on around them, but thinking it odd that the other people in the square are echoing their words, but it isn’t until a boy comes around with a paper for them to sign, that Nora crumples up, that they realize they are married – sort of.  

Adam refuses to sign the marriage certificate and learns that per the town’s rules, he will only have one month to either find a job or get married in order to stay in town.  Nora tries her level best to convince him to sign the certificate and her friends help by ensuring that Adam will not be able to keep any job he happens to find.  They both have their reasons for not wanting to marry and they stick to their convictions, even when it becomes obvious that they are perfect for each other.  

This was a well-written, fun story with lots of humor and wonderful characters.  The story is set a couple of years after the previous book and readers are greeted by lots of familiar faces, including Woodson and Mercy, there are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, some warm love scenes, and a bit of heartache and sacrifice that will pull at your heartstrings, and finally a HEA complete with an epilogue.  I am happy to recommend this title, as I loved this book and found it every bit as enjoyable as the first book.  This is the second book in the series, but it can easily be read as a standalone title.  

*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that I requested and was provided to me by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.*
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First, the cover of this book is just gorgeous! Second, what a great premise and not something I have ever read. The town of desolation welcomes gunslingers,,,if they either get married or get a job. So fun! Of course, our hero marries a feisty, opinionated bride and the sparks fly from there. Really enjoyed and look forward to more by this author.
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This is one knee-slapping hilarious book. I remember laughing at the last book and the fun continues. I laughed out loud so many times. Michelle captures the essence of the Wild West along with the sweet romance between Adam and Nora. Bless his heart, Adam could not catch a break and it was kind of fun to see a hero who had to work for it without it coming easy. Fantastic!
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You know the minute someone says they have rules for living that they're all about to be broken in the most epic ways, right?  Too bad no one clued Adam in on this or maybe he might have saved himself.  Luckily for us, however, he didn't.  

I'm a total sucker for a handsome cowboy, and Adam completely fit the bill.  Rugged, attractive, and funny in an often self-deprecating way, I was half in love with him myself.  Despite his reputation as a rough and tumble gunslinger and gambler, he has a big heart and a lot of compassion.  The way he helps everyone out really endeared him to me.  His unflagging devotion to Nora, against all odds, was heart-warming.    

Nora is the kind of woman I want to be.  Strong, independent, willing to take on any challenge that faces her, she's a real inspiration, especially for the time period.  Her issues with her father resonated with me and made me empathize with her struggles.  Also, her struggle to give up some of her control and allow Adam to do things for her was nice to watch.  She didn't have reason to trust many people, but his attempts at winning her over were sweet.  

The premise of this book is what caught my attention.  That Adam and Nora accidentally get married without realizing it set the tone for the rest of the novel.  Chaos, laughter, and lots of will they, won't they follow.  In addition, the side characters really brought the town to life.  I also appreciated the way that their instant attraction to one another slowly grows into mutual affection, even if they both deny it.  I'm definitely going to have to pick up the first in this series to see if it's as much fun as this was.
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A fun romantic read about an independent woman in a fix and a retired gunslinger looking to hide out from an unlawful lawman. Quirky characters abound, both two legged and four. There are some steamy moments once Nora and Brady succumb to their mutual attraction. I felt some of the characters’ speech patterns and vocab leaned towards modern expression but it was not a deterrent for me.  While this is the second in the town of Desolation series, this can read as a stand alone. I’m hoping the series continues with Preacher’s story!
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Historical romcom is an underrated subgenre. I loved this book. It's fun, silly, and heartwarming. Accidental wedding leads to shenanigans and love. I love Adam and Nora and I think their relationship is really beautiful. I also love that Nora is tall and has a bigger body. Love seeing that rep.
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Four and a half stars 

Michelle McLean’s second in her Gunslinger series is The Gunslinger’s Guide to Avoiding Matrimony, and is a delightful western historical.

While essentially on the run for his life, Adam Brady stumbles across the little town of Desolation, one he’d nearly given up as mythical.  While getting acquainted with what he hopes to be his new home, he ends up more or less married to one Nora Schumacher.  When one confirmed bachelor and one fiercely independent self-possessed woman who needs a husband at least in name cannot determine whether they’d be better off wed, the hijinks truly begin.

Michelle McLean does an excellent job with Adam and Nora’s story, balancing the humor with the heartfelt as they find themselves at cross purposes. They find themselves genuinely admiring the other, even though it would be far simpler to bury those feelings entirely.

Ms McLean also does a terrific job with bringing to life the joys and ties (good and not so good) that come with love, and the frustrations and often unfair circumstances that the “fairer sex” face.

Well written and entertaining, this makes me eager to pick up the other titles in the series.
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Fun and funny! A nice follow up to the first in the series. And a heroine who is tall! Sigh. It makes my heart happy.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.
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Gunslinger Adam accidentally marries Nora in the wild west town of Desolation. Adam’s trying to outrun the bounty hunter on his tail when he finds himself in a town where gunslingers are welcome…if they marry or get a job. Adam does not want to marry but finds himself hitched to Nora, who has her reasons for wanting to hold onto Adam. I felt like the premise was far-fetched and made little sense. Would marrying reform a gunslinger? The characters of Adam and Nora are likable but felt a little flat to me.  There are humorous parts and areas where the story does move quickly and caught some of my interest, but overall this just wasn’t a favorite for me. Thanks to NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC, for the chance to provide an honest review.
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The Gunslinger's Guide to Avoiding Matrimony was at times very humorous and exciting, and other times it was extremely slow and dull.

I love the concept of an old West retirement community for criminals.  Gunslinger Adam strolls into Desolation, and through a series of over the top events, finds himself hitched to Nora.

Some of the supporting characters were very funny, and the book had its moments.  But I think the romance was lacking in the "feels" and chemistry department, and the pacing was a bit all over the place.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC. All opinions are my own and freely given.
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Eh.  I thought I’d go out of my comfort zone and try a western for a change.  

Didn’t really like the hero,right off the bat.  DNF 

Part of a series that probably should be read in order.
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Right from the start , you will like the hero. Then all hell breaks lose with an unintended marriage, a community of intriguing people and a wonderful heroine who is hardworking and loving daughter. The book kept me laughing at all the jobs the hero worked at. There are moments that tug at the heart as well. Excellent book to read. It was hard to put it down.

I received an ARC of this book via NetGalley and leaving my review voluntarily.
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Thanks to Entangled Publishing, Netgalley and the author for an ARC of this book. I am leaving this review voluntarily.

This is the second in a series based in the town of Desolation, where almost everyone is an outlaw of some description, but essentially a decent person.

I was looking forward to reading this one, and I was not disappointed.  Nora is friends with everyone, including all the men in town, but this doesn't help her when she needs to get married to prevent her grief-stricken father from selling her homestead out from under her!  She's not your typical feminine beauty - she's tall and solid and helpful.  Which means that most people underestimate her as a woman.

Enter Adam, a gunslinger running from a bounty hunter, who definitely does not make the same mistake as the rest of the men in Desolation.  Even though he has vowed to avoid marriage at all costs, he can't help but be drawn to Nora - which is fortunate, because he has just accidentally married her!

This is a really sweet, funny story.  I really like how Nora and Adam fall for each other despite their misgivings, and how the town eventually accepts him.  I can't wait to find out what happens in Desolation next!
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