The following is the actual synopsis that I submitted to my publisher for Undeniably Yours. Please only read this if you’ve already read the book or have no intention of ever reading the book. A synopsis is a summary of an entire novel, so it contains “spoilers”.
When Meg Cole’s father dies unexpectedly, she becomes the majority shareholder of his oil company and the single inheritor of his fortune. Overwhelmed and emotionally overtaxed, she returns home to Dallas and to Whispering Creek Ranch, to attempt to fill her father’s shoes.
Bo Porter manages the thoroughbred racehorse farm at Whispering Creek. Meg decides to shut down the farm because, unlike her father, she has no interest in racehorses and no wish to continue funding the costly enterprise. Bo convinces her to postpone the closing by six months so that the farm can pay her back it’s start-up costs. During that time, Bo hopes to change her mind and convince her to keep it open for the long term.
Through their proximity at the ranch, the two get to know one another and forge a friendship. Bo is powerfully drawn to Meg from the beginning, but he knows that there’s nothing that can come of it. She’s his boss. She’s also a rich girl, private school educated, world traveled, and cultured. He’s a poor kid from a small town who enlisted in the military straight out of high school.
Shortly after Meg returns to Whispering Creek, Amber Richardson and her toddler son Jayden arrive at the ranch. Amber is searching for Stephen McIntyre. Stephen is the father of her son and she needs his financial help to raise their child. She comes to Meg because she hopes that Meg can help her locate him.
Meg married Stephen at the age of twenty-two, believing him to be everything she’d ever wanted in a husband. During their brief time together, however, she realized that she’d made a dreadful mistake.
Stephen is a sociopath. He’s smart, a consummate actor, completely ego-centric, and without conscience. The person he presented to Meg when they were dating was a lie, a skillful act meant to manipulate. After a year together filled with bouts of his explosive anger, his pretended caring, and his coldness, he took two million dollars from Meg’s private bank account and disappeared.
Stephen’s actions left Meg thoroughly crushed and betrayed. Ashamed, and afraid of the media coverage that would follow if she filed a police report, Meg kept secret from everyone the fact that Stephen had stolen money from her. She was granted a divorce based on the grounds of abandonment.
In the five years since, Meg has slowly recovered the shattered pieces of her life. However, it’s still a daily struggle for her to trust in God.
Meg invites Amber and Jayden to stay at the ranch, partly because she feels compassionately toward them, and partly because she blames herself for what happened to Amber. If she’d had Stephen arrested years ago, he wouldn’t have been able to go on to ruin the lives of other women. Meg determines to help Amber find work, enroll in college classes, and secure childcare for her son.
Over the weeks, Bo’s steady respect, attention, and encouragement begin to calm Meg, to bring her a sense of safety and peace. He persuades her to take riding lessons from him and she gradually comes to enjoy and appreciate the horses and the horse farm. Meg’s emotions toward Bo are deepening, but she cautiously avoids taking their relationship beyond the friendly, or the professional. After her experience with Stephen, she’s terrified of placing her faith in another man.
Meg continues to struggle with her role at Cole Oil. She doesn’t enjoy anything about her job, which makes her professional future feel dark and depressing. She tries to distill what it is, exactly, that she’s passionate about at this point in her life. Her mother died when she was a young child and that agonizing and gaping loss impacted everything that followed. She’s long loved volunteering and supporting causes that seek to aid motherless and fatherless children. But she can’t see her way clear of her responsibilities at Cole Oil to dedicate more of herself to helping kids. She prays for God’s will, but can’t discern it.
Because Amber is so unswervingly committed to finding Stephen, Meg enlists the help of her cousin Brimm. He’s a twenty-eight year old genius with a doctorate in Applied Mathematics and the computer skills of an accomplished hacker. Using the internet, he’s confident that he’ll be able to locate Stephen for Amber.
Bo takes Meg to a local country western dance spot and Meg takes Bo to a formal family event downtown. Both are equally out of their comfort zones in the other’s environments, and yet they’re perfectly suited to one another.
Meg’s aunt cautions her to stay away from Bo, saying that the only way she can be convinced that a man isn’t marrying her for her money is to marry a wealthy man. Meg’s uncle asks Bo not to see her, assuring Bo that he’s not and never will be good enough for Meg. The gut-wrenching pain of it is, that Bo already knows – has always known – this to be true.
Regardless, he loves Meg. More than anything in his life, he wants to help her, protect her, take care of her– even if that means that she goes on to flourish in a future that doesn’t include him. He wrestles with his pride and humility, his view of himself and God’s view of him and of Meg.
They try to stay away from each other, without success.
Stephen becomes aware that someone is out there, searching for him through the internet. He tracks the person to Whispering Creek Ranch and assumes that it’s Meg who’s looking for him. He has run through her two million dollars and then some, and decides to return to Meg for another pay-out. He travels toward Whispering Creek.
Brimm and Amber are spending more time together, both in their shared search for Stephen, and outside of that with Amber’s son Jayden. They begin to fall for one another.
Before the six months of their agreement are up, the horse farm meets Bo’s initial goal for it and pays off it’s start-up costs. Bo gives a riding lesson one day to both Meg and the young daughter of a friend. The little girl’s mother served in the military alongside Bo and was killed overseas. When Meg meets and spends time with the girl, who lost her mother at a very young age exactly as Meg did, God moves powerfully in Meg’s heart. She realizes that yes, this is where her emotions and heart are focused. She wants to help children like this young girl, children who’ve lost a parent.
God gradually reveals to her how she can do it. God has already provided her with a perfect place for kids and their families to come for rest, for vacations, and for horseback riding. Whispering Creek Ranch. She shares her idea of a non-profit vacation ranch with Bo, asking him if he’ll partner with her on the project, telling him that she’d like for him to keep his horse farm open, both to raise thoroughbreds and also so that they can make horses available to her campers. Bo gives her his complete support.
Meg consults an attorney and discovers that despite her ancestor’s wishes or family tradition, her shares of Cole Oil are hers to do with exactly as she pleases. Hers to keep. Or hers to give away. She begins to pray for wisdom.
Through their time spent together, Meg has come to adore Bo. He’s strong, trustworthy, and devoted to her. A part of her is still holding back from him, however. She’s afraid of the depth of her emotions toward him, afraid to fully and completely risk her heart.
Stephen learns of Meg and Bo’s relationship. Seeing Bo as an impediment to his plans, he sneaks into Bo’s house and uses his computer.
The firewalls that Brimm had set up on Meg’s accounts alert him to the fact that someone is trolling for information on her, testing and trying to breech the security of her computerized banking. Brimm informs Meg that it’s Bo.
Meg is devastated. All her deepest fears are confirmed. She confronts Bo, and he — shattered by her accusations — denies it.
Meg’s love for Bo, and her trust in him are tested almost beyond what they can bear. But with God’s leading and assurance, she’s able to step out in faith and believe Bo.
Her hope in him is proven right when Stephen finally makes his move. He abducts Meg at gunpoint and takes her to his hotel room, where he has a computer set up so that she can transfer funds to him.
Bo is able to track them down, but when he enters the hotel room, Stephen grabs Meg and puts his gun to her head. Bo drops his own weapon and kneels, intent on sacrificing his own life it that will save hers.
Bo’s brother Jake is able to distract Stephen. That tiny window of time gives Bo the opportunity he needs to hurl himself at Stephen, fight with him, and disarm him.
Beyond a doubt, Meg now knows that Bo loves her with a kind of love that she can hang her hopes on for a lifetime.
This time, Meg seizes the opportunity to correct her mistakes from the past. She has Stephen arrested and put behind bars. Amber is able to confront Stephen face to face and gain the closure she’s needed and been seeking so long. The arrest brings the media’s scrutiny down on Meg, but she’s stronger now than she’s ever been, and she’s able to weather the storm with Bo’s support.
After much consideration and prayer, Meg decides to give away a large number of her shares in the oil company. She’ll retain a seat on the board and a voice in Cole Oil, but she believes that her uncle, who’s much better qualified than she, has earned the right to lead the company into the future.
Meg is free to pour herself into the work God destined her to do — running a ranch for children — alongside the honorable cowboy who’s changed her life with his unconditional love.
For the first time ever she’s able to accept that yes, she is what everyone has always whispered about her. She’s ‘the rich one’.
Her wealth, however, has nothing to do with money.