Member Reviews

The Hometown Legend by Maisey Yates is full of introspection by two people: Rory Sullivan, hometown girl and Gideon Payne, who had been everyone’s hero and returned a broken man. Rory had had a crush on him since middle school, but this was not the same man. War had damaged him. Coming home had damaged him. She had come home from college because she was a quitter. She didn’t want to be one anymore so she had started a list of things to do. Not least of which was move to Boston and be a property manager there. She already had the job. But first, she had to take care of the cabins here, one of which Gideon was staying in. She wanted to help him. He wanted to help her. They worked on each other.

Of course, you know where this is going. It was a long journey, though, not necessarily in time. Plenty had happened between them and Gideon was beginning to see daylight. He didn’t want to stop her from fulfilling her dreams, though, which caused some dissension. The thinking and the conversations shined a light on PTSD and also on how living up to other people’s expectations can damage a soul. Both were well-written, feeling humans who wanted the best for themselves and for others. It took a while to see how expectations had made that all difficult., but it happened and in a big way. It was an interesting book, not always easy, but always enlightening. A good read. Thanks Maisey Yates!

I was invited to read The Hometown Legend by Harlequin Trade Publishing. All thoughts and opinions are mine. #Netgalley #HarlequinTradePublishing #MaiseyYates #TheHometownLegend

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Two broken souls in need of healing. Rory Sullivan had been bullied in school and college. She yearns for something different in her life. She once had the biggest crush on her best friend’s brother, Gideon, but felt he was way out of her league.

Gideon Payne, hometown legend, has returned and just wants to be left alone. He suffered injuries while serving in the military and ended up losing his career and his marriage. Now that he’s back, he reunites with Rory, his sister’s best friend. He’s renting a cabin from her family until he’s ready to move back into the family home he purchased after his family lost it. He has big plans for the property.

The more time they spend together, the more their feelings for each other grow. But Rory is leaving town soon for a new job and Gideon doesn’t want a relationship. When he finds out Rory had a list of things she wanted to accomplish in her life, though, he feels compelled to help her achieve them and prove to her that she’s worth more than she believes herself to be. Can they help heal each other and maybe find true love along the way?

A heartwarming story. Could have done without the bad language.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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The Hometown Legend is the eight book in the Four Corners Ranch series. It follows Rory Sullivan, a lost soul looking to find the place where she belongs and best friends with Gideon’s sister. Gideon Payne, Pyrite Fall’s own hometown legend who is also a war hero struggling with PTSD.

This is only the second book from The Four Corners Ranch series that I have read, but I am really enjoying it! This is a slow burn, which is not typically my go-to but is something I do enjoy from time to time.

The banter and chemistry between the two main characters is great. I really fell in love with the characters throughout this book. Gideon became a more open and vulnerable person when with Rory. Rory became bolder and sure of herself when with Gideon. They both have past traumas and were able to find strength in each other to move on. My only gripe with the book is that Rory feels rather naive, but that was just a small blimp in the storyline to me and didn’t take away from my enjoyment of this book.

You will love this book if you like:
Western
Grumpy x sunshine
Military mmc
Virgin fmc
Slowburn

The Hometown Legend can be read as a standalone or as part of the series. If you love a good slow burn Western romance, this just might be the book for you!

Thank you to Maisey Yates, Harlequin Trade Publishing, Canary Street Press, and Netgalley for this opportunity.

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THE HOMETOWN LEGEND – Maisey Yates
Four Corners Ranch, Book 8
Canary Street Press
ISBN: 978-1-335-00628-8
July 23, 2024
Contemporary Romance

Pyrite Falls, Oregon – Present Day

Gideon Payne had always been the town’s prodigal son. He was popular in high school and left to join the military. He later was injured and given a Purple Heart, but he is still held in high regard in town even though he hasn’t been back. Rory Sullivan had a crush on Gideon growing up and since she was his sister Lydia’s best friend, was kept up to date on him. One day while Rory is out walking, she spots a mysterious man out of nowhere. She runs away, but later, wonders if that was Gideon. If so, he is not like the man she remembers. Why is he back and why hasn’t Lydia mentioned it?

Gideon is indeed back but he hasn’t contacted his mother or sister. They lost their ranch after his father passed away and he has bought it back with plans to turn it into an adventure camp for families. Gideon is indeed different from before. In Afghanistan, he had been injured in an explosion that killed several members of his unit and left not only physical scars but emotional ones. He doesn’t recognize Rory, but when she shows up at the cabin that he rented from the Sullivan family, he is stunned at how she has changed. She is now beautiful—and he’s attracted to her. He learns she is going to be leaving soon for a job in Boston. He accidentally finds her journal, where she lists the things that she wants to do. He vows to help do as many as possible, including her wish to kiss a man. There’s an attraction building between them. Will it lead to something more than a kiss?

The town learns Gideon is back in town and throws him a parade. For a wounded veteran, it’s the last thing he wants in THE HOMETOWN LEGEND. Gideon rebuffs a lot of people around him because he feels like a failure after what happened in Afghanistan when he survived but his friends did not. Rory decides to help him get reacclimated to living back in Pyrite Falls and they develop a friendship. They also spend a lot of time together as they work on his plans for the adventure camp. Yet, there is more to them than being friends. That promised kiss may just be the spark to set the pile of kindling on fire to their attraction. Hovering over them is his PTSD and her plans for leaving. Will things change before the end of this tale?

Readers will enjoy the camaraderie between Rory and Gideon. Despite the years apart, she hasn’t gotten over her crush on him. He thinks of himself as damaged goods, and she wants to help him. THE HOMETOWN LEGEND is a feel-good tale with a side of sensuality as the passion heats up between them. Will Rory and Gideon find love together? Discover the answer by picking up a copy of this sizzling and enjoyable tale.

Patti Fischer
Romance Reviews Today

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Thank you, Maisey Yates, for this latest installment in your Four Corners Ranch series. My favorite trope in contemporary romance is wounded warriors, and you knocked this one out of the park. It's a 5-star read.

I loved both main characters, Gideon, the titular returning hometown legend, and Rory Sullivan, who has crushed on him from afar since her early school days--he's her best friends' brother. Rory is a 27-year-old, never been kissed, never been on a date virgin, who has been working at the family farm store, and losing herself in books. She's rather shy and retiring and for good reason. She was bullied in school, and humiliated during her one semester at college. The bright savior of her early school days was Gideon, who protected her from those who bullied, teased and/or put her down.

Rory has always considered herself to be plain, boring, beige, and nerdy, and she's recently decided that to change her life, she needs to change her location. Using her computer, she's just applied to and been hired to manage an apartment building in Boston--a long way from home and Four Corners Ranch. She's looking forward to starting over in a new place, and she doesn't want to go to Boston a virgin--but no one is asking her out, and she doesn't go to bars looking to hook up with a stranger. She has one month before she leaves for her new job. Then she learns that Gideon was wounded in action, has been honorably discharged from the military, and will be renting one of the Sullivan family cabins that she manages, but the golden-boy Gideon she remembers is nothing like the dark, humorless, angry, Gideon that returns home.

Growing up, Gideon was quite the hottie, the town's legendary and lauded football player, smart, gorgeous, and able to get any girl he wanted. At 18 he joined the military and hasn't been back home since, except briefly to attend his father's funeral. Thirteen years later, after being gravely wounded in Afghanistan, and losing many of the men under his command, what he has to show for it are scars, burns, PTSD, anger, depression, a bout with alcoholism as well as drugs, and other losses--his self-esteem, his self-worth, his sense of humor, and his 8-year marriage. He doesn't even let his mom or his sister know when he arrives back in town, choosing to secretly rent a cabin from the Sullivan's and hide out there for a while.

In this novel, Ms. Yates has created two well-developed, incredibly sympathetic, and deeply troubled characters--both of whom are broken, although for different reasons. Gideon finds himself attracted to grown-up Rory, and she has always been attracted to him, but can these two wounded souls help heal each other? As someone married to a wounded veteran with PTSD, I can tell you that it's no easy task, but it's so worth the effort. To find out more about what happens when Gideon and Rory re-establish contact with one another, you'll just have to read this emotionally gripping novel--it's one I highly recommend.

I voluntarily read an advance reader copy of this novel. The opinions stated are my own.

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I have really been enjoying the Four Corners series. I find it has as much heart as it does heat.

Rory & Gideon really stole my heart with their story. I could totally relate to Rory. She wants to get out of her shell but doesn't quite know how. She was very sweet but not a pushover. I enjoyed her character a lot. Gideon's storyline was so heartbreaking. He's a wounded soldier returning home and he feels not only out of place but he's also dealing with PTSD. I couldn't imagine being in his shoes. I think Rory & Gideon complimented each other. They both helped each other with their issues which was so romantic in my opinion.

The romance is a slow burn which makes sense for the characters. I really liked how their relationship developed. I found a lot of their romance to be very romantic.

This is an emotional read so I would not recommend this if you're looking for a romcom. If you want an emotional story that's going to put you through the ringer then stitch you back together, this is the book. This story is touching, romantic and full of hope. Would recommend. Can be read as a standalone.

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Growing up in a small town myself, I truly enjoyed reading this one! I absolutely loved the descriptive settings and felt transported to the ranch every time I picked up my kindle.

Rory is a lost soul looking for adventure and escape from her very basic life. She came off a bit naive and honestly a little cringy at times, but I think those two things really contributed to the innocence that the author was trying to portray.

Gideon is a hometown hero with tortured soul. Together, Gideon and Rory help one another with their struggles and fall for each other along the way.

I enjoyed this book. It was deeper than I initially thought it would be going in, with running themes of PTSD and trauma. I felt the tenderness in Rory and Gideon’s relationship and enjoyed the slow burn.

This was my first Maisey Yates book, and I enjoyed her writing style, even though I did feel like it was a bit young-feeling. It was a very easy read, and I flew right through it!

Thank you to NetGalley, the Hive, and the publisher for this ARC!

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Gideon, the hometown hero of the title, has retuned to town struggling with PTSD. He's hidden himself away, much as Rory, his sister's friend, has hidden herself away. Her trauma is not the same as his by any means but they appreciate each other and slowly help one another to heal. Some of this is a tad cringey (Rory is like way too naive for a woman these days) but it's also got a big heart. I'd not read the other books in the series but this is clearly designed as one of those series where each installment is fine as a standalone. Thanks to the publisher for the Arc. For fans of Yates.

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Thank you NetGalley for the ARC of this novel. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I have read several of Maisey Yates books, but this is the first of this series. I found this one to be very deep and very sweet, what a combination. Returning war hero and hometown girl. Great story. Enjoyable read. At times I found it ad too much detail, nevertheless I would recommend.

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The Hometown Legend was a great escape from reality. I had to shut out the world in order to concentrate, understand and absorb the story. The story is detailed. The story is very complex. The story is very emotional. My heart bleeds for Gideon and Rory. My whole being shines for their new beginning, for surviving the past, and thriving in their own way.

Gideon had a bright childhood. He excelled in high school sports. He is still a hometown legend. He is now considered a war hero to everyone but himself. He returns to Pyrite Falls under the cover of darkness, renting a Sullivan Cabin, in search of a new self. The last thing he wants is to be recognized and for people to think he is the same. He is anything but.

Rory is lost and has never been found. She struggled to fit in junior high and high school. She was frequently fell victim to others. When she tried to escape to college, thinking things would be better, she returned home when she discovered they weren't. Now she takes care of the family's cabin rentals. Delivering a welcome basket to Gideon, checking on Gideon, will be a new beginning for both of them.

The Hometown Legend is a very slow build. Gideon and Rory are honest with each other. Reading their story was group therapy in a book. They made each other think. They made me think. Acceptance didn't come easy between them. The Aw-ha moments were a pleasure to read. Their troubles were heart breaking but their emotional development left me feeling at peace.

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Rating 3.75

Always enjoy returning to the Four Corners Series.

Gideon Payne, home town legend is returning and is viewed as a hero for his service in the war.But in reality Gideon does not feel like a hero, more like a broken man. He's dealing with a lot of aftermath emotionally and physically from the war and he's not the same man as when he left.

Rory Sullivan, a woman that has decided she turning over a new leaf. She's not going to be the same predictable, safe and naive girl anymore. She has decided to leave Four Corners and move to a big city and spread her wings.

Well Rory finds out Gideon is back in town, her secret crush. She's asked to check in on him and see how if he needs anything. After the two meet a couple times they begin to realize that they can assist and help each other with some of their issues. Rory can help Gideon work through his past pain, hurt and PTSD. Gideon wants to help Rory be a more confident and self assured woman and believe in herself.

This story has a lot of heavy topics, so not really a lite read. More I think this is really about second chances. Both have a past that needs to be worked through and let healing take place as well as forgiveness. But I so appreciated their HEA.

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The Hometown Legend is everything I’ve come to know and love about a Maisey Yates book.

Rory and Gideon became one of my favorite couples pretty quickly. I enjoyed that this one was more of a slow burn type romance. Best friends older brother is always a great trope in my opinion and this was no exception.

Everyone I know is aware of my love for these books and I’ve got several of my friends into reading them too. There’s just something about a small town romance with flawed characters that hits different.

If you’ve never read Maisey Yates before I recommend starting with the first in the Four Corners series or Gold Valley series.

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I always enjoy reading a Maisey Yates book! This one involved quite a bit of healing for the two main characters, Rory and Gideon. Each needed to overcome emotional hurdles to be able to fall in love. Stories like this one help give the reader more insight into the unseen traumas of PTSD as well as the healing power of love and understanding. Thank you, NetGalley for the chance to read and honestly review this book.

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I received an arc from NetGalley and this is my honest opinion.

Both Rory and Gideon have a lot of baggage but when Gideon returns home there is a spark between them that can’t be denied. While Rory can’t be his life saver she is definitely a light in Gideon’s life and motivates him to do better and Gideon is good for Rory in helping with her confidence.

The problem…… Rory is moving and that has been her plan to help find herself outside of her hometown. Will this time in their life just be a memory or can they build something for a lifetime?
4.5 stars

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Maisey Yates weaves a poignant story of second chances, resilience, and love.

The chemistry between Rory and Gideon is palpable, and their emotional journeys are beautifully portrayed.

Yates captures the essence of small-town life, infusing it with raw emotion and vivid descriptions.

Fans of heartfelt romance will appreciate the depth of character and the tender moments that unfold.

This book delivers a satisfying blend of passion and redemption.

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"But the bravery is in getting back up. The bravery is in healing yourself. The bravery is in defining yourself not by the bad things, but by choosing to embrace love again, and that is glory."

This was not just a romance novel. It was a heavy story of experiencing the pit of brokenness, the healing and the journey of coming out the other side of it (PTSD), the understanding and knowledge that you don't have to be the person that people think you are, to have the affirmation that second chances are very much possible, and being on the receiving end of forgiveness -- personally and from those around you. Rory and Gideon's story was not an easy one.....so much emotional trauma and baggage for the two of them...from childhood and their young adult life experiences. Their history and connections when they were younger to reconnecting later in life, they truly are the perfect half to each other, and really the better versions of themselves in spite of it all -- the ying to her yang, the peanut butter to his jelly.....

This was overall a well written story. It is not clean by any means....plenty of profanity unfortunately (quite a bit of f-bombs) which many time I really feel that kind of language is not needed at all. I will say given Gideon's military background it makes sense knowing what I know of many that come out of the military BUT it is not the case for all those men as well as women. There are plenty that can control their tongue in that respect. Passion and chemistry is strongly conveyed, and I appreciate that for characters that are falling in love, the "scenes" are open door but are not written with every detail or crudely which is appreciated.

I am thankful that most of what I described above, you can skim over those moments and not miss out on the story and overarching themes and lessons of their journey and relationship that conveyed powerful life lessons and self discovery.

I had the privilege of reading an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I would like to thank NetGalley and Harlequin Trade Publishing | Canary Street Press for this opportunity.

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Another great read in Maisey Yates' Four Corners Ranch series. This time we have Rory Sullivan and Pyrite Falls's prodigal son, Gideon Payne. Rory has always had a thing for Gideon, even though he left town, joined the Army and got married. Gideon has returned in questionable condition both mental and physically after surviving a bomb explosion, an addiction to pain meds and a divorce.

I enjoyed watching the relationship change between Rory and Gideon throughout this book. It was also nice to see some other familiar characters from previous books in this series. Pick this one up for another great read from Four Corners Ranch. This one could be read without having read the other books in the series I feel like.

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A sweet small town romance. Even though I'm not a fan of rea life small town's because everyone knows your business. But in book format I just love a good small town and a small town romance.

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Maisey Yates has done it again! This book is just fantastic! I couldn’t put it down. Yates has the perfect blend of character development and romance! Highly recommend.

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Maisey Yates brings us the next installment in the Four Corners Ranch series with Rory Sullivan. Rory is the sister whose name everyone forgets. She is the sister who has never been kissed. She is the sister who has never been on a date. She is the sister who is getting ready to be brave and leave home to start a new life away from the familiar and safety of her family. Meanwhile, the hometown golden boy Gideon Payne has come home hoping to heal and become whole again after losing everything. When Rory is asked to look in on her first crush, Rory and Gideon find out that they could help each other out before she leaves for Boston. Gideon can help Rory be better prepared for the world out there while Rory can help Gideon feel less pain and suffering from the effects of war. But as they help each other out, do they get more than they bargained for?

Maisey Yates brings us the story of Rory and Gideon. These two people were very different growing up: the most popular guy and the invisible girl in school. Now, one is a shell of the person he once was while the other is trying to be someone that is remembered once she leaves home. Will they be able to help each other become who they want to be, or will they end up becoming who they should be? And will being in each other's company change anything for either of them?

I have read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I would like to thank NetGalley and Harlequin Trade Publishing | Canary Street Press for this privilege.

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