The Charmer in Chaps by Julia London

The Charmer in Chaps

Julia London

Luca is as seductive as he was then, but Ella isn’t about to fall for his flirting.Yet the closer Luca gets to Ella, the more he wants to be the only one she leans on.

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A Texas Prince Meets His Match...
Cimarron County knows the youngest son of the fabled Prince family as a womanizing hell-raiser, but Luca has changed and he intends to prove it. There's just one problem—a woman with sparkling eyes and more fight than a barnyard cat.
After a childhood of living in foster homes, Ella Kendall has exactly three things to her name: A dog, a pig, and the rundown house she just inherited. Luca may not remember her from high school, but she definitely remembers him. He is as seductive as he was then, but Ella isn't about to fall for his flirting. She recognizes a playboy cowboy when she sees one.
Luca knows Ella has learned the hard way to trust no one but herself. Yet the closer he gets to Ella, the more he wants to be the only one she leans on. Because Ella is the only woman for him, and he wants to be the man who finally gives her the home she truly deserves.

Advance Galley Reviews

Thank you First To Read for giving me the opportunity to read an advanced copy of The Charmer In Chaps by Julia London. I started to read this book but time ran out before I could finish. I will have to pick up a copy of this book to finish since I was enjoying the story.

I received an advanced copy of this book. This is the start of a new series. This is the story of Ella Kendall and Luca Prince. They met in high school, she thought there was a spark, he didn’t. They meet again when they are adults. Is there a spark now? They begin to “not date”, but get together. They come from very different worlds, and that begins to interfere. This is a great start to a new series and I can’t wait for the next one in the series!

The book starts out with Ella Kendall explaining her high school crush on Luca Prince and how it still stuck with her years later. When she moves back to her hometown and runs into Luca. He at first does not recognize her. But his high school years were plagued with his own issues that stem with his learning disability and his family money. Ella grew up in foster care but recently inherited a house from her Grandma. This property is in the middle of the Prince land and she ends up running into Luca quite a bit. They end up becoming friends and then "hanging out". Due to Ella's upbringing she has huge walls up around her heart and does not let too many people in. There are many obstacles to overcome in this book for both characters. For a rich person Luca was very down to earth in this book it was kind of refreshing. He still did things that normal people could not do like not worry about how they would survive and if they had anything to wear to a very fancy party. I liked Ella for the most part but there were a few times that she was a little annoying and did things without explanation but I guess that is human nature sometimes. I am looking forward to more books in this series to find out more about the Prince family and to see if we can see more of what happens with Luca and Ella. I like how descriptive the landscape views were I was able to picture all of what Julia London was describing. I received this book for free to review from First to read in exchange for an honest review. The opinion in this review is 100% my own.

I really enjoyed this one! It's my first by this author but won't be my last. It was a very easy read, it was cute and funny with a few dashes of sexy thrown in. I don't really have any strong complaints, a few little things like the mediocre feminist line (really though?) but nothing that made me hate the book, at all. Overall it was a thoroughly enjoyable read, I liked the writing a lot and the characters were developed well and yeah, no complaints! I really liked Luca, Ella was a bit harder to get a handle on but eventually she wins you over. I loved them together. I wish the epilogue was a bit more focused on the main couple but eh. I will definitely be picking up the next book in the series.

This is an easy to read and charming (had to go there) romance where the inveterate playboy finds himself changed for the better after falling in love with the girl next door. Both Luca and Ella have problematic personality quirks that I'm not a big fan of, but the story plays into them and gives both its leads a chance to better themselves and grow. And it doesn't stop with just the leads, almost every major side character also gets at least a bit of character growth and development. Ella is pretty much every single leading lady ever in that she's gorgeous and amazing but led a hard life so she has really low self-esteem. I'm a little bit over that trope, but she makes such a good pair with Luca that I constantly found myself forgiving that. This is a novel that shines brighter when the characters are interacting instead of in their introspective moments. I appreciate how Luca's dyslexia is treated and how realistic his problem is shown. The fact that his family would rather leave him in the lurch than to admit that he needs help really hit me and it made the (slightly) entitled male lead that much more human. The Prince family has many levels to explore and I like how London gave little glimpses into each member's life and situation. It really did pull me in and now I can't wait to see what's in store for the rest of them.

I'm not a huge fan of the modern rake as a character (I don't know why it works better for me in a historical) and Luca irritated me at first meeting, but while he was busy trying to win over Ella, he charmed me too.  I grew to admire his determination and hard work, especially with the lack of real support from his family.  As shiny as he looks from the outside, he has troubles that has followed him from his childhood and it takes a strong person to be willing to pursue a dream and try to improve not only themselves but the world while they are at it.   I honestly didn't expect to like Ella.  Usually when authors write about foster care kids they make them too independent and too afraid of commitment.  While Ella is hesitant to get involved with Luca, her history of keeping herself walled off from others is more nuanced and less heavy handed.  If anything brought the story down for me it was Ella's devotion to Stacy.  I get that there was a bond there that is hard for her to ignore.  It's also easy to understand why Stacy does the things she does, both for the reader and Ella ... but she's not a very good friend.  She blows in and out of Ella's life, doesn't really support her, and does illegal things.  At some point, your history together stops being that important.  I really wanted better for Ella.  London wonderfully blends together multifaceted characters, personal growth, family dysfunction, and life in the vast Texas plains to give readers a emotional and complex story.  A very promising start to a new series!

It's always sweet when a renowned "playboy" falls for the girl-next-door, changing his lifestyle and everything else he thinks will help him prove to her that he's serious about her. London adds an additional layer by weaving in the the defense mechanisms of a rich guy who's had to hide his illiteracy his whole life and a poor woman who was raised in one foster home after another, making their journey one big struggle to get past one another's emotional boundaries. I liked both Luca and Ella, and their scenes together portrayed such a sweet relationship. The love could easily be felt between the lines and was also explicitly played out for readers to experience. My only issue: the bulk of Luca and Ella's relationship plays out at her run-down house. While their scenes together are charming, it's no wonder why Ella has trouble believing in how Luca feels about her and whether or not they can truly make a life together when they come from such separate backgrounds and have spent very little time in his "world". I will definitely look for the second in the series, though, because I really enjoyed how the emotional investment could be felt between Ella and Luca.

Ella has always had a crush on Luca Prince, ever since they were in high school together. Years later Ella has an opportunity to come back to Three Rivers where she grew up and she runs into Luca out of all people. I loved the way this story started out, with the chance encounter and Luca not recognizing Ella. I enjoyed the way the relationship played out between Ella and Luca. They had a sweet romance and I loved the early stages when they were still getting to know each other before they became more intimate. The last third or so of the book kind of felt flat for me. I felt like there was too much going on with characters that I wasn’t completely invested in. Even though the book had some flaws for me, I still enjoyed it. **Thank you to Penguin for the ARC. All opinions are my own**

A charmer of an easy to read romance. Nice banter and humor. While the romance between Luca and Ella is the focus, the peripheral characters weren't boring. I also enjoyed the setting. Straight forward and sexy without unnecessary sex scenes every few pages.

I really enjoyed this book The plot was a good pace and the storyline was intriguing as well as quick read. The love story didn't seem forced or rushed, and the love scenes had me reaching for ice water. I really liked the character development of Luca and Ella and the setting of small town Texas was great. This was a fun and quick read and knowing that the secondary characters will get their own books will keep me reading this series. Definitely recommend!

Ella Kendall spent her childhood in and out of foster homes. When her grandmother died, Ella inherited the old, run-down farmhouse on the outskirts of town. It’s the only place she has ever called home, so she wants to make it work. Then she runs into her high school crush who doesn’t even remember that he kissed her at a school dance. The last thing she wants to do is fall in love with one of the riches men in the state of Texas. He’s a charmer and hard to resist, but her fears of abandonment keep getting in the way of love. Luca Prince has always been a player. His money and good looks get him whatever, or whoever, he wants. But lately he’s had a dream to turn some of the Three Rivers Ranch into a conservation area to help refurbish the land and bring back the wildlife. He also wants Ella Kendall to fall for him, but she’s having none of it. He also carries a secret that only his family knows—a secret that could get in the way of his happiness. The Charmer in Chaps is such a delightful romance. The characters are funny and charming and easy to relate to, especially Ella. It’s a tale as old as time—Cinderella meets Prince Charming. It makes you want to believe in the fairy tale all over again. And you do. Secondary characters had me in stitches, especially Luca’s Grandma Dolly. I laughed so hard at some of the things she came up with to say. This cast of characters won’t be easily forgotten. Set against the backdrop of the vast Texas plains, full of vivid imagery from city streets to a small town, The Charmer in Chaps comes alive and will leave you smiling as you relive your high school crush through the eyes of Ella Kendall.

Unfortunately, I was unable to download my copy and I had been trying for weeks. I was so looking forward to reading and reviewing this book since I am always looking for new romance reads, especially cowboy romance.

I found this book to be a quick and easy read. I thought the characters were relatable, and each had their own issues to work through. This is the first book I have read by this author, and I'm eager to see what else she has. Looking forward to the next installment to this series!

I am a Book Blogger for For the Southwest By the Southwest Book Corner. This is the first book in the series 'The Princes of Texas'. I can honestly say that I was completely enjoying the book, the characters were fun and very interesting to follow. The characters I could really relate to as being real. But... I was a little more than 1/2 way thru the book, when the vulgarity started. The sex scenes turned pretty vulgar, and I have a rule, if I would be ashamed of someone picking up a book and reading it, than I don't need it. There is no warning in the description for explicit sexual scenes, so I give this book a 2 Star rating. It's really too bad, I was really enjoying it, but when I started reading the vulgar parts, I closed it, not to go back to it.

I’m a huge Julia London fan and this book was no exception. This was an easy and enjoyable read. Looking forward to the next book in the series!

I have not read many cowboy romance novels but this one was a pretty good story. These people did seem to have a lot, no really, a monstrous lot of personal problems but it was interesting. A couple of steamy sex scenes, which is just about right. Not too few, not too many. I enjoyed the excerpt from the next book, Devil in the Saddle. Looking forward to that one.

I found this to be a very fast paced read and couldn't wait to see what happened. I haven't read other books by this author to judge how it compares, but I will be looking forward to the next book in the series. I would definitely recommend. Thanks First to Read for my advance copy.

Overall a good read. I felt some parts were boringly descriptive and pointless but not bad enough for me to give up reading it. I will also add that I will be reading the next book in the series.

Ella Kendall had a huge crush on Luca prince in high school.He transfered to her school in his junior year. The prince family owns a ranch which the town is named after. Luca gave Ella a Earth shattering kiss her senior year at the dance. Then he acted like it never happened. Ella and Stacy aged out of foster care. Ella had several boyfriends and never connected to any of them. Ella finished her accounting degree and has an accounting job and a hostess job. No guy has ever had the effect on her that Luca did. Ella hasn't seen Luca in 12years until she broke down in middle of road trying to buy parts for broken faucet. Luca doesn't seem to remember her and she is embarrassed. Luca has been through a string of beautiful women. I instantly liked Ella and I love cowboy romances. I love the names Ella and Luca. Luca is a bit of a player but Ella is hard to get. The house Ella inherited is in bad shape and close by Lucas family ranch.I thought the conservation part added to the story. I loved watching Ella slowly put her guard down.I really didn't care for Stacy and her stunts but felt bad for her in the end what happened. I also reviewed on my new blog and goodreads and mentioned it was a first to read book

I normally love Julia London's books but this one was really a disappointment. Luca was not my favorite character and I felt no connection to him. Ella was a little more likable but not by much. Luca and Ella are the worst couple and I felt like the story kept dragging on. This book was maybe a 3 out of 5.

This was the perfect weekend read! This is the trope of poor girl/rich boy with a common ground of mutual attraction and past hardship. Ella finally has a home of her own after years of living in foster care and is working at getting established as an accountant. Luca, the local rich boy, connects with Ella as he starts pursuing a dream of his own and facing some personal challenges. There's a mutual attraction that they can't help but explore despite Ella's misgivings. While there wasn't a lot of conflict, there was some soul-searching and some real reflection and growth as they struggled to believe in their future potential and take a risk. The issues (environmentalism, poverty, dyslexia, foster care, grief, different classes, breaking from tradition) weren't deeply explored, but there was enough of them to give a little depth to the story. There was also a fun supporting cast of characters, including a some animals that came with Ella's new home, a troubled foster care 'sister', and a quirky grandmother, among others. The was a quick, enjoyable read. I was sad to see this book end, and I can't wait to read the next story in the series! I have pre-ordered it!

3.5 out of 5 stars. I have no real complaints. I liked how the characters were imperfect: dyslexia, kleptomania, trust issues, etc. This was certainly a laid back read in my mind. There wasn't a whole lot of conflict, and when there was conflict, I didn't really FEEL it. So I guess I would say this is a pleasant weekend read but that it didn't really stand out to me as having an emotional impact. Thus, 3.5 stars.

There were many strengths to this book. First, it was very well actualized. The language is solid, with some wonderful conversational passages. The main characters, Ella and Luca, fall in line with many tropes of the genre (high school classmates, huge/ uneven crush, playboy and poor girl. The tropes of the genre (notice I don't say stereotypes) didn't at all bother me. The nuances of character outweighed any elements of familiar plotting. Of course, the tone of my first sentence should indicate that is a "but" here. I don't know if it's London I fault or the genre in general (one that I have even blogged about loving mind). About 2/3 of the way through, you are starting to see these two people are friends growing into more. You see Luca isn't quite the cad you think. Ella is no wilting hayseed. The story is right on. This is Cinderella story where the poor girl needs saving as much as the prince. Cool! Then London makes a joke about feminism. The guy demands to take the girl on the date. She feels she shouldn't be ordered around, as she is a feminist, but then agrees stating she is a "bad feminist." Dear Ms. London, a bad feminist is one who doesn't think men and women are equal. Period. All other actions, including dating a cowboy, and actually a very enlightened one at that, doesn't make her a bad feminist. Feminism isn't about what you wear, or who buys you dinner, or which books you read. It is simply, and I say this again for the people in the back, the idea that women are equal. What is strange is that after the protagonist calls herself a bad feminist, the cowboy calls himself one too. A cowboy even calling him a feminist, even tongue in cheek, is a sense that this book has inherent equality of sexes. London, it's okay to think women and men are equal and due to equal rights under the law. It doesn't mean that women can't let me, including hot cowboys, buy them dinner. It also doesn't mean that women can't enjoy a book about said cowboys (or write them). And, I'll tell you what, it also means that I can rationally say this was a good book, worth enjoying on your next holiday, say, or in an evening where you need some escapism, despite that drawback. After all, I can be a feminist, see a mistake in something a woman does, speak of it critically, and still appreciate their work.

I am usually wary about reading certain books but I am SO glad I was able to read this one. Julia London had me enthralled by the first chapter and I couldnt put it down. Luca Prince is a not only rich but very fine and even after twelve years Ellie cant stop thinking about him nor the kiss they had shared in high school. When Ellie ends up moving back to their small town she bumps into Luca and those feelings she had start to come back. Growing up in foster care has made her wary of feeling for someone and letting them into her life fully. But that isnt going to stop Luca from trying to push those walls down. In the end I loved the book, you see not only Ellie's POV but some of Luca's and even his mothers. You also get to see a side of his life, with him struggling with his dyslexia and overcoming everything he had to deal when it came to it. I am glad to have been given the opportunity to read this book. I cant wait to read the next Prince of Texas novel!


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