Cowboy's CodununrumTitle:  Cowboy’s Conundrum
Series:  Culpepper Cowboys #3
Author:  Kirsten Osbourne
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Published:  March 31, 2016
My Rating:  4 stars
Source:  Borrowed with Kindle Unlimited
Cover Description:

Joy Quinlan has spent her entire life trying to be the personification of her name. When she moves to Wyoming with her three sisters, she is determined to keep looking happy, as she always has. She worries that none of the four exciting Culpepper men will be interested in her, but sexy Kolby makes a beeline for her as soon as they meet.

Kolby Culpepper has known for years that his heart must remain removed from any relationship. When he spots Joy sitting on his mother’s sofa, he knows she’s the Quinlan Quad for him, but he becomes more determined than ever to keep from loving again. Will this unlikely pair be able to see past their hang-ups? Or are they destined to spend the rest of their lives without love?

Read on for my thoughts on Cowboy’s Conundrum.

In the third story in the Culpepper Cowboys series, Kolby and Joy are about to say their own “I Do’s” – unfortunately, what could have been a true love match for this couple turns into a situation that will test Joy’s ability to be joyful about everything in her life.

Kolby turned into the brother that I had the most trouble liking, even a little.  Oh sure, the boys got the wrong end of the stick with their grandfather’s will and a slimy cousin wanting his portion of the ranch in cash, now.  Modern day mail order brides solved part of their problems, but someone should have told Kolby that taking away someone’s future dream is not the way to start a successful, long lasting marriage.

Kolby flat out told Joy that he would never love her.  He’d take care of her, respect her, even bed her for the future children – but he would never, ever love her.  Joy tried to take that declaration with a grain of salt.  Really?  He could turn off his ability to love forever?  Certainly over time he could come to care for her, even strong like would be better than a life without the possibility of being loved for herself.  But Kolby was determinedly stubborn about this.  They definitely connected in the love making department, and that connection gave Joy some hope.  Unfortunately, Kolby proved to be true to his foolish, stubborn word.

Joy has lived her life doing everything possible to live up to her name.  Her parents taught her that her position in life was to make everyone around her joyful.  Her name even spelled it out – give to J=Jesus O=others Y=yourself last.  The quads parents have done a number on each one of their daughters… each one worse than the last, if that’s at all possible.  To be convinced that you can never, ever show any other emotion than joy is – unrealistic of anyone.  Yet, Joy has done just that.  So her upbringing taught her to continue to give joy to Kolby, even if it hurt so deeply.

One decision changed everything.  The butterfly is ready to turn into a vengeful dragon – and she’s gonna kill him with kindness, after she pelts him with (hopefully rotten) tomatoes.

Joy decided that if she told Kolby that she had fallen in love with him, that would open his heart to love her back.  It made perfect sense.  Until the evening when she told him – and he ignored her words.  Totally ignored her.  Finally, Joy got angry – and it was the best thing to happen to her or Kolby.  Joy finally realized that her individual happiness was just as, if not more important than everyone else’s… she deserved to be loved and when the dam broke she let loose with some reality on her husband.  Kolby would finally come to realize that just because some flighty, silly girl stomped on his heart years ago – he was capable of loving again.  Too bad it took almost losing the woman he loved to come to that conclusion.

I might not have liked Kolby very much – but Joy was a delight.  Especially when she finally came into her own as a woman and a person.  Anger isn’t always bad, sometimes it clears the air and makes everything understandable.  It’s impossible to be every person’s joy – they have to find that for themselves.

Available for the Kindle