For the Record by Regina Jennings is the third book in the “Ozark Mountain Romance” trilogy, and works as a stand-alone. In fact, even though I have read the first two books in the series, I didn’t even recognize this as being related to them until a good bit into the book! It was set many years after the first two books and it didn’t weave in the previous characters much or well.
Betsy Huckabee, as readers of the previous books may remember, is a [slightly more so] grown-up version of the annoying little girl who was always snooping around in other peoples’ business. Now that she’s in her twenties, she writes down her finds from snooping and calls it journalism. Since the newspaper in her town of Pine Gap isn’t too large, she sends off her work to a bigger city. When a new (and handsome) deputy moves into town, Betsy immediately sets to work, dreaming up romantic stories about him, writing them down, and sending them off to a faraway newspaper.
Deputy Joel Puckett is running from rumors and big cities, so he runs to the small town of Pine Gap, where no one knows him or what people say about him. Adjusting to the town and winning the peoples’ trust is hard, and having Betsy around him at every turn is annoying, but he makes do.
As Betsy’s stories of the new deputy grow wilder and wilder, and more and more papers publish them, will the deputy’s past catch up with him? Will he ever live up to Betsy’s descriptions of him?
This was not my favorite of this series, as it was confusing and I didn’t care for the way in which the romance developed, seeing as how it was based off of untrue perceptions. It seemed as if everything Betsy wrote about Puckett was so outlandish, and Puckett didn’t match her descriptions of the dashing hero for half the book or more, and then–poof!–he became the hero. Also it seemed that he fell in love with Betsy simply because she was in his way all the time and the only young female around.
Thank you to Bethany House publishers for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own were not required to be positive.
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