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Lindsay McKenna: Taking Fire — releases today!
Sunday, March 1st, 2015

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There are two black Arabian horses that figure prominently in Taking Fire.  US Marine Corps Sergeant Khatereh (Khat) Shinwari, uses them to cause havoc, attack the Taliban, protect her father’s village along the Afghan border with Pakistan.  She had two full sisters, two Arabian mares, Mina and Zorah.  Mina is her main riding horse.  Zorah is a pack-horse, carrying supplies and medicines to the villages that Khat takes care of.  She is a paramedic, as part of her training.

Khat has learned to be a shadow warrior using her sturdy, endurance trained mounts.  Mina is the one that she rides and sets up ambushes as well as sniper attacks, up in the Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan, near the Pak border.  With a black horse at night, it won’t be seen by the Taliban or Al-Queda soldiers.  During the daylight hours as she operates as a Shadow Warrior creating havoc for her vaunted enemy, Mina may gallop for miles along rough, narrow trails used only by goats.   Khat relies on her nimble, swift mare to carry her away from the enemy before they can find and capture her.  She has evaded her enemy for five years, lives in any number of caves to escape detection, takes care of her hardy, brave Arabians, who in turn, take care of her.

Because Khat is half Afghani, she had the blood of these warriors in her DNA.  And utilizing the Arabian horse is part of her black ops life.  Mina gets her to an ambush, and helps her escape it.  Khat cares and adores her brave and beautiful horses.  And they love her in return.

Khat needed this breed because of it’s well-known endurance.  First bred in the Middle East, the Egyptian Arabians are well known for their delicate beauty.  But their beauty is molded by thousands of years of being bred and living in the hot deserts of many countries.  There is no breed more intelligent than an Arabian.  Even today, among the Bedouins, their horses are cherished  At night, the horses come and stay with the family in their tent, an accepted part of the human household.  Over these thousands of years, because of this tight human-animal connection, Arabians are considered “people” horse breed.  The bond between people and Arabians is one of legend nowadays.  But it’s true.  I know because I bred, raised and sold Arabians in Ohio for ten years when we had our farm.  As you read Taking Fire, just know that the information on these wonderful four-legged secondary characters is all true.

Lindsay McKenna Links:
Website: http://www.lindsaymckenna.com
Blog:  http://lindsaymckenna.wordpress.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lindsay-McKenna/504139729714132?ref_type=bookmark
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/lindsaymckenna
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/LindsayMcKenna
Book trailer:  http://vimeo.com/lindsaymckenna/breakingpoint/
Amazon: amazon.com/author/lindsaymckenna
Instagram:  www.instagram.com  (Lindsay McKenna)
Lindsay McKenna Newsletter:  https://www.mynewsletterbuilder.com/tools/subscription?username=lindsay.mckenna
audible.com:  The complete Wyoming Series
http://www.audible.com/search/ref=a_mn_at_ano_tseft__galileo/183-3253016-9714910?advsearchKeywords=Lindsay+Mckenna&x=0&y=0

Donna Michaels: Wyne and Chocolate
Monday, February 23rd, 2015

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Citizen Soldier Series/Book 2: Mason
Buy link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PULHSAO

Jill is a chocoholic with a big heart, a flair for baking and confection, and a knack for getting into predicaments, including the one where she was almost financially ruined by her ex. Now she’s in a new town, with a new business, and is determined to stay away from trouble. Especially, the gorgeous guardsman with the haunted gaze, brooding expression and miserable attitude.  Her days of helping people were over. She was tired of being taken advantage of and was looking forward to getting back on her feet. Too bad her new business venture puts her in daily contact with the sexy man.

Excerpt:

Who would’ve guessed chocolate penises would lead her on a path to financial freedom?

A loud knock reverberated through the silent car. Jumping straight up, she hit her head off the roof. Pain radiated across her face, again. “Ouch.”

Unable to make out more than shadows, she twisted the key and pushed the button to roll down the window. With her heart hammering in her throat, she prayed an axe murderer wasn’t on the other side.

“Are you okay?” a familiar voice asked, and it took her a second to focus on the handsome man in fatigues.

Her mind registered the National Guard uniform with the name WYNE on his chest, while her body registered just which of the four gorgeous Wyne brothers stood outside her door.

Mason. The grumpy one. Serious one. Cute, drop-dead gorgeous one. The one whose mere presence always interrupted her pulse and sent a tingle to all her neglected good parts.

But he was a man. And she was off men. For over a year-and-a-half now. So, her body was just going to have to starve because she was still fasting.

“Jill?” Another face appeared. Another Wyne brother. The youngest. The friendliest. Keiffer. “Is that you? Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” she finally answered, pushing at the air bag. “I got in a fight with this and lost.”

“What the hell are you doing out here?” Mr. Grumpypuss asked, withdrawing a huge knife from his ACUs—Army Camouflage Uniform—and stepped closer. “Turn your head and close your eyes,” he ordered before she even had a chance to answer his question.

A second later, she heard a huge pop, and felt a burst of air. When she opened her eyes and turned back around, the airbag was deflated, and she could breathe a little easier. Read the rest of this entry »

Charlie Cochrane: Your Obsession (Contest)
Friday, February 20th, 2015

UPDATE: The winner of the goody bag is…David!

* * * * *

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Do you – as either readers or writers – have a theme or era or setting that will not let you go? I was recently re-reading Susan Hill’s excellent “Strange Meeting”, which is set in WWI; in the introduction she said how she felt compelled to write WWI out of her system and did so with that book. On the one hand I was frustrated by that, as I’d have loved to read more of her work set in that era, but on the other, I was envious of her because she’d been able to produce that one book and walk away. You see, WWI keeps whispering in my ear saying, “Write about me, write about me…”

I guess it’s partly my own fault because I have always read a lot of books from the late 19th and early 20th century (Conan Doyle has a lot to answer for) and enjoy ploughing through biographies of WWI poets, or true accounts from soldiers, sailors and airman of the time. Time and again I come across something that makes me think, “Ooh, that would be a great idea for a story”. Then I have to tell the writer side of my brain to behave itself as I’ve “done” WWI four times and really, do I have to go there again?

I’m sure this is as much a reading obsession as a writing one. There was a period when I almost had to sneak WWI themed books out of the bookshop and into my house in a plain brown wrapper, so my family wouldn’t know I’d bought yet another tome about sportsmen who’d lost their lives in the Great War or some such theme. But once you get bitten by the bug, it has you in its grip as strongly as Lyme Disease does, and I’ve had that too so I know what I’m talking about!

It’s the same when you come across a new author. Maybe I should rephrase that – it’s the same when I come across a new author, because I just want to work through anything of theirs I can get my mitts on. And it’s not just “new” authors. I’ve read and re-read The Lord of the Rings many times, and then I’ve pored over all those books about the writing of the trilogy. Similarly I’ve read the Sherlock Holmes stories, then felt compelled to get books about Sherlock’s’ London, the world he lived in, the men who inspired the character, and all things Holmes and Watson.

So, tell me. What’s your reading or writing obsession? Best answer wins a goodie bag.

 

Latest release:
http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/lessons-for-survivors

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A more than professional interest . . . a more than personal intrigue.

Orlando Coppersmith should be happy. WWI is almost a year in the past, he’s back at St. Bride’s College in Cambridge, his lover and best friend Jonty Stewart is at his side again, and—to top it all—he’s about to be made Forsterian Professor of Applied Mathematics. And although he and Jonty have precious little time for an investigative commission, they can’t resist a suspected murder case which must be solved in a month so a clergyman can claim his rightful inheritance.

But the courses of scholarship, true love, and amateur detecting never did run smooth. Orlando’s inaugural lecture proves almost impossible to write. A plagiarism case he’s adjudicating on turns nasty with a threat of blackmail against him and Jonty. And the murder investigation turns up too many leads and too little hard evidence.

Orlando and Jonty may be facing their first failure as amateur detectives, and the ruin of their professional and private reputations. Brains, brawn, the pleasures of the double bed—they’ll need them all to lay their problems to rest.

Links:

Charlie’s a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, Mystery People, and International Thriller Writers Inc., with titles published by Carina, Samhain, Bold Strokes Books, MLR, and Riptide.

To sign up for her newsletter, email her at cochrane.charlie2@googlemail.com, or catch her at:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/charlie.cochrane.18
Twitter: http://twitter.com/charliecochrane
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2727135.Charlie_Cochrane
Blog: http://charliecochrane.livejournal.com
Website: http://www.charliecochrane.co.uk 

Tara Manderino: Bound by Blood (Contest)
Thursday, February 19th, 2015

Tara Manderino has a unique take on vampires. They have progeny! What vampires have you see on TV or the movies, or in books, that you would love to see with children?

Comment for a chance to win Bound by Blood!

*~*~*~*~*~*

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Most vampires don’t have to worry about their children. Alex does. Worse yet, now he’s worrying about the nanny.

In his two-hundred and fifty years as a vampire, Alex never had to intervene with any of his progeny no matter the circumstances. But now he has no choice. Alex is a detective sworn to protect when a little girl of his lineage is kidnapped.  When he meets Lisa, the child’s nanny, his protective instincts kick into gear, yet he finds he must expose her to ever increasing danger as they search for the missing child.

With Lisa’s help, Alex tracks the kidnapper. Learning why she was abducted rocks him on his heels and sets off a transcontinental search that leads to ancient myths of the Cardinal’s Ruby, the stone in Alex’s ring. Alex and Lisa have one shot to save the child, but will they be able to stop the impending destruction raining down?

Excerpt:

He turned to meet the nanny and  blinked twice. Nannies simply did not look like Miss Lisa Mitchell. At least none of the nannies he had known. Even if they had been younger than fifty they wore starched looking clothing, the kind that could stand up on its own. And they invariably had their hair pulled back and skewed into a so-tight braid it made an instant face-lift.

This nanny was the complete opposite in every way. Her hair, a burnished copper, curled about her face and it looked as if no amount of combing would tame it. Her mouth was a shade too wide, the kind that was perfect for smiling, and was quite mobile. At the moment, he couldn’t see her eyes because the lids were closed, but her lashes were thick and fanned against her pale skin. Her nicely shaped nose was tipped in red, evidence of her crying. He could hear her slow even breathing and was loathe to wake her. But the child needed to be found.

Standing next to her, he watched her exhausted sleep for a moment. If he wanted answers, he would have to rouse her. Slightly leaning over her, he gently nudged her shoulder with his hand.

Her eyes flew open in a second, then widened. He straightened, giving her some breathing room. She looked about, puzzled for a moment, then he saw the terror in the depths of her eyes.

“Who are you?” she asked, pushing herself against the cushions in an effort to sit up straighter.

Alex perched on the edge of the arm of the nearby chair…“Lisa — May I call you that?” At her nod, he continued. “We need to talk about what happened. I‘m sure you’ve already told the police what you remember, but maybe it would be better if we went to the scene. Perhaps something there will prompt your memory.

Alex extended his hand to the young woman. When she placed her hand in his for the second time, he automatically closed his fingers over hers. He tugged, pulling her to her feet. “I’m sure we’ll be fine. If you want to send uniforms, that would be agreeable, but not necessary. You have my badge number.”

Escorting Lisa outside, Alex knew he should drop her hand. There was no reason to hold on to it — and every reason in the world. It felt right and he didn’t want to let go. She didn’t resist.

Bio:

Tara Manderino writes in a variety of genres, from paranormal to historical. She’s She first began writing in third grade when she realized she couldn’t afford her reading habit.

She writes and is published in a variety of genres and finds that each one is her favorite at the time. Her books are available at a variety of online retailers.

Tara resides in her native town in southwestern Pennsylvania. When she’s not chasing Lydia, the Boxer, she’s writing her own stories, reading or watching old movies,

Buy link:  Amazon: http://amzn.com/B00761OURU

Social Media Links:
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/taramanderino
Author Page FB– https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Tara-Manderino-Author/125470584194435
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/TManderino
Linked In   http://www.linkedin.com/in/taramanderino

Joey Hill: Soul Rest (Contest)
Tuesday, February 17th, 2015

Hello, my name is Joey W. Hill. I write BDSM erotic romance (paranormal and contemporary) and I’m a workaholic. I’m sure I’d hear a chorus of ‘hi Joey’s’ from the audience, except all the other workaholics are…working. They have no time to spare for a support group. So I’m sharing this with you all because writing a post for a blog is, well, part of the job of being a writer (and it gives me a work-related excuse to socialize with wonderful people like yourself).  If you want to damage my calm, all you have to do is tell me to relax, do nothing or sit around. I desperately need advice on how to wean myself away from being a structured schedule junkie. Can you help me?  I really have tried. Here are some of my recent efforts:

1) I took a trip to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Technically, it was a research trip for my latest book, Soul Rest, where I visited the district with the highest crime rate so I could interview a police captain there. I also drove around the side streets to see if I could find someone in the middle of a drug deal. No such luck. Can you believe that? You’d think drug dealers would be considerate enough to be a little more public about their transactions so curious romance authors could ask them questions, but apparently not.

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I also made my husband take endless pictures of the carousel at The Mall in Louisiana. It’s the second largest carousel in the world. Since carousels as a rule aren’t that big, that’s not saying a lot, but it was quite beautiful. One of the key scenes in the book happens there. Part of that scene takes place on the beautiful roan/blood bay mix horse you see next to the rabbit in this photo. One picture can’t do the carousel justice. The colors and detail of the whole thing were gorgeous and it all appeared to be hand painted. There also were so many different animals on it. The one on the other side of the horse is a cat with a fish in his mouth. But I digress…

2) I attended a funeral with my husband. There was live singing at the service and a potluck dinner at the church afterward, so it counts as dinner and a show. Right?

3) I do try to read for pleasure. They’re usually the same books I’ve read before, old keeper shelf favorites, because I can’t read any new books without going into editor mode and trying to “work” while I read. The good news is the books are awesome re-reads: the In Death series by J.D. Robb, Once in a Blue Moon by Penelope Williamson, The Black Lyon by Jude Devereaux and some of my favorite 80s/90s Nora Roberts titles (Dream and Chesapeake Bay series, Midnight Bayou, Hidden Riches).

4) The one good thing about workaholism is an exercise regimen can become your structured “break time”. So I walk dogs, treadmill and do strength training while watching favorite movies and TV series. Again, I’m watching ones I’ve seen before, but I firmly believe if I was on a deserted island (that somehow had electricity so I could plug in a DVD player), I’d never need anything to watch other than the Firefly series (Firefly fans probably caught my “Jayne-ism” up there, ‘damage my calm’).  Or the Life series with Damian Lewis. Best written TV stories ever. Oh, and Armageddon or Serenity for the fave movies.

So I can see from the way you’re looking at one another, you think I’m in real trouble. Have any good ideas about how to unhitch yourself from a demanding job and endless schedule structure to smell the roses? I’m all ears. Okay, well… I’m all ears while I’m multi-tasking – answering emails, outlining the next book and brushing my Golden Retriever – but I’m listening, I promise… (cough, cough – hairball – Goldens have LOTS of fur).

GIVEAWAY – for the suggestion I like best, I’m giving away an e-book from my current titles and a $15 gift certificate to Amazon, B&N or ARe – reader’s choice on both of those! Post your ideas below, or any comments or questions you have for me.

Now, even if you don’t win, I have a FREE EXCERPT to share with you. As noted above, my next release is Soul Rest, which is about a Baton Rouge police sergeant and a news blog reporter. It’s the seventh book in my Knights of the Board Room series, but all these books can standalone, because each focuses on a different couple. Here’s a little snippet from when Leland finds Celeste hovering around his officers at a crime scene (with a link to a full Chapter One excerpt below it!):

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He kept his scowl in place. “From here forward, you don’t talk to my officers, and you don’t bring them coffee.”

“There’s no law against a reporter attempting to talk to your officers or giving them coffee. They do a tough job. I’m showing appreciation as a Baton Rouge citizen.”

He pursed his lips, nodded. Then he bent so he spoke into her ear. He bet that little tender spot beneath it, so close to his lips, would taste nice. “I see you doing it again, I will put you over my knee and blister your ass.”

He drew back enough to meet her startled gaze. Shock was followed by indignation, a trace of anger, but it was the little ripple of arousal, the quick indrawn breath, that made him want to do exactly as he’d threatened.

“Are we clear, Celeste?” He kept his eyes on hers, his tone steady.

She pressed her lips together, said nothing. He wondered what he would do if she said “Yes sir.” Probably nurse a hard-on for the rest of the morning.

He forced himself to straighten, to ease back on a couple different levels. “You should have taken my sweatshirt to stay warm this morning. I bet that car of yours doesn’t heat worth shit.”

She blinked in surprise again. He hadn’t intended to say something stupidly intimate like that, but it was out before he could call it back. Her flush deepened. “It does well enough,” she said. “Having my underwear would have helped, but they were stolen. I expect I should report that to local law enforcement.”

“Items like that are rarely recovered. The perp has usually taken them for personal reasons, not to fence.”

Her brow lifted, then her gaze swept his lower torso. “So he might be wearing them?”

She was not going to make him laugh, though it was a near thing. He’d called out one of his uniforms for merely taking her coffee. Now he was flirting with her. Really fine damn example he was.

*~*~*~*

FREE chapter one excerpt and a blurb about the book – http://www.storywitch.com/book-kbr-sr. Release date March 15 – keep your eye out for pre-order links soon!

Web: www.storywitch.com   FB: www.facebook.com/JoeyWHillAuthor  Twitter: @JoeyWHill

D.T. Dyllin: Not Really a Rant
Monday, February 16th, 2015

It’s been awhile since I’ve written a guest post. Although I was first filled with excitement for the opportunity, it quickly turned into dread because every time I sat down to write the post…nothing. I had absolutely nothing as far as ideas went. I tried to brainstorm, think about what potential readers might be interested in. Still…nothing…nada…zero…zilch. I came to the conclusion that I’d used up all of my creativity in my novels and current WIPs. Not the worst place to use it, but it still left me with the problem of what to write. What to write…what to write????!

The question began to haunt me in an endless loop. I, of course, wanted to be light, witty and engaging. Let’s face it, a guest post, if done right, is a great opportunity for both the host site and the guest. Good cross promotion and all of that. It would not be good for anyone if I bombed out and just wrote something stupid. Ugh. With each day that ticked by with nothing on the page, stinking up the place became a very plausible reality. Whyyyy couldn’t I come up with an idea?

Then this year’s Grammys happened. *Boom * An idea!

Did I watch The Grammys myself? No. But I awakened to a plethora of posts across different social media sites, all about the whole Kenye and Beck debacle. What does the Grammys and that whole mess have to do with me, romance books etc? Weeeel… a lot. You see, people seem to lose their damn minds over awards. Do they really mean anything? No. Okay, so maybe that’s not entirely true. Sometimes, they can mean more sales, and who doesn’t want that? But when it really comes down to it, awards don’t change anything. Not the product of whatever art was produced, whether it be music, books, a performance in a movie, etc. So why do people care so much? Why can’t we all be supportive of each other as fellow artists? You may not personally care for something, but that doesn’t mean you have to rain all over someone else’s parade?

Why can’t we all respect each other’s talents? I’m not a huge fan of non-paranormal romance. Straight up contemporary romance without a twist, frankly, bores me. Buuuut… I have a lot of author friends who write it. So when one of my friends has a release, I buy their book. I don’t broadcast that fact. Some of them probably don’t even know that I do it. I simply purchase their book in a show of support, more for me than them in a way. I don’t want to ever compete with other writers. We are all in this together. Writing is not a zero sum game. We can all be successful and it doesn’t take anything away from our own creations. Now, I’m not saying the only way to show support is to go buy product, whatever that may be. Sometimes support can come in the form of not trampling all over someone else’s moment. Everyone deserves their moment in the sun. If you’re feeling all rain cloudy, then go dribble on someone else.

Okaaay… My guest post isn’t really a rant. I’m holding myself back from having one on someone else’s blog. I’ll reserve my rants for my own virtual space. Lol So what am I trying to say in this post? Amidst all the babble is a point, I swear. Let’s all be more supportive of each other, not just us creative types, but of each other as human beings. I’m tired of hearing about all the B.S. in the news. It friggin’ depresses me. It’s one of the reasons I hide away from social media sometimes. For my own sanity. But today… today I want to hear about the good things that happen to others. I’m not going to talk about or promote any of my books in this post. I want to open up the comments for good news from my fellow book-y peeps. I’m going to use my guest post space to try and generate some good vibes for everyone.

So how about it… Post something in the comments about your book, or a book that you’re reading. Good stuff only.  Don’t go and rain on my good karma parade I’m trying to start. Because then I will be forced to hurt you. ;)

I’m going to close this post (Not rant! Boo-yah!) by quoting Bill S. Preston Esquire, and Ted Theodore Logan (Yeah, I’m totally dating myself. *sigh *): Be excellent to each other! (And I don’t care what anyone says, that was a great movie! I’m talking to you, Hubby!)

Thanks for having me here today! :)

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Photo by Stephanie Saujon

 

About the author

D.T. Dyllin is a bestselling author who writes both New Adult and Adult Romance. As a romance junkie, anything with a love story is her kryptonite and her obsession is what first drove her to begin twisting her own tales of scorching romance.

D.T. was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Black & Gold for life, baby!) She now lives in Little Rock, Arkansas with her husband and two spoiled German Shepherds.

 

Jane Leopold Quinn: The Long Road To You
Sunday, February 15th, 2015

The Long Road To You
The Brothers Agee – Nick

My two historical western releases are my homage to the western. Their inspiration came from my love of the TV western, The Big Valley. I was/am a Nick Barkley fan. For a while I monitored a fan fiction site relating to this show. Heath was the big favorite, Jarrod fans were strong, but Nick fans were loyal. That black clothing and especially the omnipresent black gloves were somehow sexy. In Nick’s case, a black Stetson didn’t make him the bad guy.

My first manuscript written was The Long Road to You, and it starred a hero named Nick. Around the same time, I was listening to an Andrea Bocelli CD, Sogno, and in particular the song, ‘O Mare e Tu. Its haunting minor chords, the Spanish/Arabic/Gypsy sounds  put me in mind of the Flamenco. A young Anglo woman became my heroine, and she became the Flamenco dancer. You’d think a Mexican or Spanish woman would be the dancer, but I turned it around so the properly brought up and schooled American girl fell in love with the Flamenco, tried to break her bonds of propriety, and flee to escape the threat of an arranged marriage. This book became Jake and Ivy, the first in The Brothers Agee series.

Both heroes Jake and Nick were inspired, in part, by an incident in my husband’s youth. The brothers were raised in an orphanage. Nick left when Jake was ten years old, and they rediscovered each other in Jake and Ivy. My heart ached for the young orphan boys.

After Jake and Ivy’s happily ever after, Nick realized that he yearned to quit roaming, settle down, and find his own home. His visit to Jake’s ranch brings along the discovery of the neighboring ranch owner, Margee McPherson. Margee’s feistiness, independence, and beauty make Nick think of the life he needs now and how long the road has been to this place and time.

Cowboy rides horse between two large boulders

 

Nick Gabriel, orphan, outlaw, reformed man, yearns for what his brother Jake has—land, a home, and best of all, a loving wife. Nick pulls a woman off a rearing horse, slamming her sexy, lithe body against his, the impetuous action setting him up to lose his heart.

Margee McPherson’s whole world revolves around running the ranch her father left her and handling the creepy ranch foreman she also inherited. Years before, she’d made a mistake that ended tragically. Now, she won’t allow the drifter cowboy, Nick Gabriel, to get anywhere near her no matter how tall, dark, and handsome he is, and how much she longs to be in his arms.

Both have secrets in their pasts. Will Margee’s fear and guilt keep her from moving forward with her life? Nick’s fallen in love with the beautiful rancher. Can he prove to her his roaming days are over? And will they survive their past secrets, finding the love they didn’t know they craved?

EXCERPT

God, it’s hot. Sun. Fire nearby for the branding irons. The air was heavy and hazy with dust as well as ash and smoke from the smoldering cottonwood logs. Beeves lowed as they waited and jostled each other in the holding pens, and the calves bawled earsplittingly as they were culled out for branding.

Margee’s arms and legs were strained to their utmost. Sweat dripped down her face and neck caking dust into mud streaks along the side of her nose, on her upper lip, and her chin. Branding a calf was difficult, but the cowboys made it look easy. Of course, they all had a hundred pounds or more on her. One of them could handle it alone.

Margee didn’t have to help out, but she reveled in it. After all, she’d not come home to sit in the parlor and ply a needle on stitchery. A cowboy behind her held the calf while she dug in her heels, taking its head to the ground. He forced the hindquarters down for branding. She felt the calf jerk, smelled burning hair, and heard his final complaint. She rolled off to free the calf and watched him trot away, indignantly tossing his hindquarters as if to shake off the sting.

Brushing dust and dirt from her eyes and mouth, she chuckled about what the girls at school would think to see her now. They’d probably refuse to acknowledge her. Well, they wouldn’t even recognize her in the first place. In the time since she’d been home on the ranch, she’d become a totally different person. The prim, proper, quiet young lady she’d been schooled to be at the Atkinson Private Academy for Young Ladies in Philadelphia was gone. In its place was someone more like the tomboy she’d been before she went east. She liked herself and loved her life so much more now.

Finally free. Free of convention. Free of restrictions. Free of teachers and chaperones monitoring her every move. They hadn’t been able to control her thoughts, though. Her goal had always been to come home and never be forced to leave again.

Her former classmates wouldn’t recognize her by her clothing either. She refused to wear the constricting corset with its whalebone stays that flattened her body into a stiff column. All the hard work and riding had strengthened her already firm, lean body. Her usual style of clothing consisted of a divided leather skirt for ease of riding astride and a man’s shirt with the sleeves rolled up to the elbow. Because she only wore a hat in the hottest sun or to protect her head in the rain, her face, arms, and hands were tanned beyond what would be proper back east. Straight auburn hair, which was only piled on top of her head while working or in the fiercest heat, usually fell free around her face and shoulders or was gathered at her nape with a ribbon.

Before she leaped to her feet, as she was fully capable of doing, a pair of large, well-worn boots appeared in front of her along with a hand. Grabbing the hand, she was yanked abruptly to her feet and stumbled heavily against what felt like a boulder. A boulder in clothes.

“Wuf!” She gripped the man’s forearms for balance. “Thank you.” Glancing up, she peered into the eyes of the very man who’d been inhabiting some very fevered dreams lately. Damn. What’s he doing here? Her good humor died. He’s too close. Her heart raced. The long face, those wide-set, dark eyes were just as she remembered. At that moment, his sculpted lips opened in a generous smile.

In the bright daylight, she noticed the wind and sun-roughened texture of his face. The same as the first time she’d seen him. Then why did it feel like a fist closed around her heart? He was such a—man. All hard and masculine. Stubble, dark and bristly, covered his strong square chin. Creases had carved deep into the sides of his mouth. She had to wrest her mind into control. She did not want that mouth on hers.

Breath stuck in her throat though. Her mind quit working as her fingers tightened on his shirt sleeves. Shadowed by his hat, his eyes held humor, probably at her expense. Oh my. Transfixed in this improbable place of heat and dust and an incredible cacophony of sounds, she looked into the depth of his eyes and knew, in her soul, she was in a lot of trouble. More than she’d been with that other man. Her first.

The Brothers Agee Series –

jq200x300The Long Road To You available now at Amazon – http://amzn.com/B00SX7AR5K

Jake and Ivy available now at Amazon - http://amzn.com/B00OEFC9LK

Bio

Sensual fantasies were locked in my mind for years until a friend said, “Why don’t you write them down?” Why not, indeed? One spiral notebook, a pen and the unleashing of my imagination later, and here I am with more than a dozen books published. The craft of writing erotic romance has become my passion and my niche in life. I love every part of the creative process — developing characters, designing the plot, even drawing the layout of physical spaces from my stories. My careers have been varied — third grade school teacher, bookkeeper, secretary — none of which gave me a bit of inspiration. But now I’m lucky enough to write romance full time — the best job in the universe!

My Books 

Ellora’s Cave
Lost and Found
The Real Deal
Ancient Ties (coming soon)
Educating Eris (coming soon)
My Parisian Summer (coming soon)

Indie
Loving Valentine
His, Hers & His
The Keeper
Soldier, Come Home
Winning Violetta
A Promise at Dawn
Jake and Ivy
Wooing the Librarian
Home to Stay
The Long Road to You
Her Hero (coming soon)

Siren
I’ll Be Your Last

Jane Leopold Quinn
My Romance:  Love With a Scorching Sensuality
http://janeleopoldquinn.BlogSpot.com  +  https://twitter.com/jelquinnauthor
Amazon Author Page