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  • Writer's pictureMidnightAce


This is a new pair to the Book Bar shelves and I am excited about trying something new from LaQuette and Cask & Barrel. Both have their own unique and complex stories for us to enjoy!

Series: Restoration Ranch

Book: One

Publisher : Sourcebooks Casablanca

Publication date : February 23, 2021

Genre: African American Romance, Suspense

From celebrated author LaQuette comes a sizzling opposites attract Texas Ranger romance that will leave you breathless...

Aja Everett longs to turn her old family ranch into a place where anyone can find rest and healing. But her big heart's bound to get her in trouble if she's not careful—someone wants her gone, and they'll do whatever it takes to drive her away from the land that's her lifeblood. Whether she's willing to admit it or not, she needs help.

She needs a man like Ranger Jackson Dean.

Jackson doesn't trust love. He once made the mistake of following his heart and all he'd gotten was pain in return. But when city-slicking do-gooder Aja Everett asks for his help, he can't stay away...and as attraction sizzles and protective instincts flare, she may be the only woman able to restore the heart of this Texas Ranger.



Jackson appears to be the first book of the Restoration Ranch series. The author gives us a romantic suspense set in a small town in Texas. Aja Everett and Jackson Dean both have baggage they weren't ready to unpack, but as fate would have it, they are thrown together under an extreme circumstance; murder attempt/s on the owner of Restoration Ranch.

Aja has lived a life of luxury as a New York celebrity attorney. She has witnessed the good and bad of the system. Jackson, a Texas Ranger has vowed to serve and protect. But, when he's unable to save the one person he was in love with, it causes him to lose all faith in love. Could Restoration Ranch be what they both need?

It is long overdue for Aja to visit the ranch, and she doesn't hesitate when she is requested to come back. When she returns, she finds that there is a lot to be done.

Once there, she sees an opportunity to give others a redo on life by turning it into a place of all things restoration. This tribute to the land causes some unrest to some of the townsfolk. They seek to sabotage. Jackson was asked to go undercover to find out who is behind the mishaps at the ranch but, Aja and Jackson bump heads along the way.

I enjoyed getting to know this couple and seeing them get to a place of healing and put past experiences behind them. The supporting characters were an integral part of moving this story alone, and I hope to see them again.

I am a newcomer to author LaQuette, but I plan to follow this series and other titles. The end left me with a few unanswered questions, which I hope we'll get in the next installment. If you love suspense and romance, you will want to check this out.




Cask & Barrel Cognac Barrel Aged Chardonnay is the market leader in the “Spirits-Barrel Aged Wine” category. This premium Central Coast Chardonnay is aged in French Cognac Barrels to expand the depth of the Chardonnay’s complexity and elegance. The unique characters of the Cognac Barrel and the varietal Chardonnay bring about a “French Connection” that creates a truly unique wine.

Food Pair Recommendation: grilled halibut, roast tarragon chicken or pasta with a creamy pesto sauce.

Asiago and Havarti are excellent cheese accompaniments.

COST: $12-16 Found in some local grocery and wine& spirit stores.


I wasn't a big Chardonnay fan before trying this, but I may have to rethink that decision. I am intrigued by the whiskey-aged barrel wines. It is my second experience with Cask & Barrel.

This Cognac Barrel Aged Chardonnay has its own unique style. The cognac aging barrel brings a little extra to the experience. On the nose, there are hints of pear, oak, and vanilla. The taste offered hints of oak, pear, and a smooth buttery finish. I would consider this cognac barrel-aged chardonnay to be medium bold and will definitely buy this one again.

I paired this book with Jackson by LaQuette, because like the story, it is unique and complex.


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