Cover image for Kentucky heat
Kentucky heat
Michaels, Fern.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York, NY : Kensington Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
330 pages ; 24 cm
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Alden Ewell Free Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Collins Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Concord Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Eden Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Elma Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Grand Island Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Lancaster Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
North Collins Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Anna M. Reinstein Library X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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A New York Times BestsellerNealy Coleman Diamond rides fast, loves hard, and lives with an appetite for winning no one can match. With Nealy, horses come first. So when her two grown children's irresponsible acts nearly cost her Shufly, the foal that carries all her hopes for the Triple Crown, she throws them both off Blue Diamond Farm, a decision that changes their future and her own.To the world, Nealy looks unbreakable. Inside her heart has shattered. Estranged from her daughter Emm and son Nick, she struggles alone to build her racing stables into the best in Kentucky -- and Shufly into the horse of the century.Raw with emotion, and yet filled with an unstoppable energy, Nealy will face bitter disappointments, exhilarating triumphs, and a night of bloodcurdling terror-- one that could mean the end of her dreams . . . and maybe her life.

Author Notes

Fern Michaels is the pseudonym for Mary Ruth Kuczkir. She was born on April 9, 1933, and grew up in Hasting, Pennsylvania.

Michaels is an American author of romance and thriller novels, including at least 90 bestselling books with more than 150 million copies in print. Her USA Today and New York Times bestselling books include Family Blessings, Pretty Woman, Crown Jewel, Take Down and About Face. She writes the Texas quartet, the Captive series, and The Sisterhood series.

(Bowker Author Biography) Fern Michaels has been writing novels for twenty-five years. She has written sixty-seven books, many of which have been "New York Times" bestsellers. She lives in South Carolina.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Michaels continues the family saga she began in Kentucky Rich [BKL Ag 01], which stars Nealy Coleman Diamond Clay, a teenage mother who ran away from home and ended up at Blue Diamond Farms in the heart of Kentucky raising and racing thoroughbreds. Now in her late forties and a widow, Nealy's life has always been a struggle, and she'll need all her strength for what lies ahead. She throws her daughter, Emmie, and her son, Nick, off the farm, then immerses herself in the training of one last contender for the coveted Triple Crown. Nealy realizes that this will be her last Derby horse and is ready to move on, which she does with the help of her husband's old college friend, Hatch Littletree. He's been acting as a mentor to her children, and, unbeknownst to them, becomes an important part of Nealy's life as their early antagonism changes to attraction. Her children start to develop their own lives, while Nealy searches out information about the mother she never knew. It turns out that learning about the past is the catharsis that helps put Nealy's demons to rest, allowing her to look toward the future. Michael's plot-driven story moves at a fast pace and will please her many fans, especially those who want to revisit the many characters from her previous novels. --Patty Engelmann

Publisher's Weekly Review

Building on the success of her Vegas and Texas series, Michaels (Kentucky Rich) enlarges the Coleman and Thornton family legacies in her second novel set in bluegrass country. The indomitable Nealy Coleman Diamond Clay has her hands full: the foal that carries her hopes for the Triple Crown is born early while her grown children and helpmeets are away. When they return with news (her son has eloped with the family's cook and her daughter's husband abandoned her on a cruise) Nealy is furious as far as she's concerned, they were due home a week ago. "The horses always [come] first," sighs daughter Emmie. The multiple catastrophes strain plausibility, but the stalwart Michaels, whose plots are chock-full of dramatic tension, knows how to pull off the impossible. Nealy meets her match in her late husband's former law partner, Hatch Littletree, a larger-than-life Native American whose physical magnitude and considerable wealth is matched by his big heart and largess. The internecine family feuds, present and past not to mention the author's compulsion to fill in the blanks about the Thorntons and Colemans and their stormy histories takes away from the larger story about the developing relationship between Nealy and Hatch, and her endeavors toward a second Triple Crown sweep. In addition, a subplot involving a potential movie about Nealy's life (introduced in a rambling prologue and inexplicably ignored for over 200 pages) fails miserably. The brisk narrative also goes awry when a sudden cataclysm following a thrilling race victory robs the climax of its punch, dragging out the final section of the book to its inevitable happy conclusion. National advertising. (May 1) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Continuing the saga begun in Kentucky Rich, Michaels rejoins Nealy Coleman Diamond Clay several years after her Triple Crown win. Though she is comfortable with her horses, Nealy struggles with personal relationships at all levels. At first, she appears so rigid and harsh that it is difficult to sympathize with her. Even a later explanation that she drove her adult children away out of love fails to counteract this first impression. For most of the book, Nealy works her way to self-understanding and real happiness, but just as it seems she has succeeded, Michaels inserts an almost unbelievable event to rip her life apart again. Nealy's sudden reversion to self-isolation and a subsequent return to happiness seem rushed, with little plot or character development. Stilted dialog, frequent encounters with the spirit of Nealy's dead husband, and the appearance of characters from the "Texas" and "Vegas" trilogies serve only to muddy the plot. These flaws do not seem to bother her fans, however. Public libraries where Kentucky Rich was popular will want to purchase. Barbara E. Kemp, Univ. of Houston Libs. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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