What a delightful book this is. It's the first in a multi-author series -- which no doubt explains the bizarre premise -- but even writing to a formula, Heath delivers a unique story.Rancher Hercules Daltry -- call him Lee -- is aghast when his coming-of-age "labor" turns out to be teaching the local school for a year. But believing he's already disappointed his family with his poor ability as a student, he's determined not to fail them again. Schoolmarm Meredith Lewis is also aghast -- not only was the position supposed to be hers, but Lee's methods of teaching are all wrong. He doesn't immediately correct errors, takes the children outside constantly, and teaches them to print instead of using proper cursive. But as Meredith and Lee bound over a student with serious troubles, she discovers the method to Lee's madness, and the tremendous love and compassion the lies behind his ever charming smile.Lee is an utterly adorable character. He's strong, confident, capable, and highly imaginative, but feeling slower than others has given him humility and insight into human nature. I love how he uses his own experience to remake school for his student. He's very good with women, but since he's used to covering up his intellectual lacks with charm, he has no idea that Meredith could care for him if she knew he had trouble reading and writing. Meredith, in the prissy schoolmarm role, is harder to like and I wish more attention had been paid to bringing out her good points. Less time spent on the troubled Jimmy and more on the couple would have been nice. I also kept being thrown by the idea that Lee is 20 years old and Meredith 19 -- I suppose it might be realistic for the times that they feel totally grown-up, but they seem so much older. If it weren't for these flaws, this might be a 5 star read for me, but as it is, it's an enthusiastic 4.