Ride a Texas Cowboy
Genre: Contemporary, Western
On Sale: January 2017
Katelyn Carter came to rural Texas to lick her wounds and start over after her failed marriage, but a sexy young cowboy seems determined to show her that love is still in the cards for this single librarian.
Sheriff’s deputy Daniel Bodine answers a 911 call to remove a rattlesnake from his new neighbor’s bedroom. What he finds is an embarrassed Katelyn, dressed in little more than her pretty pink blushes. One little omission later, and he’s working for the lady as her handyman.
Burned once by a man, Katelyn fights her growing attraction but finds Daniel more temptation than she can resist. When he shows her he knows his way around a woman’s body as well as he does a hammer and a saw, she takes a walk on the nasty side, vainly hoping she can keep her heart free of entanglement.
Note for Readers: You must be of legal age in your country of origin to read this excerpt.
The house Katelyn Carter had bought sight unseen was kind of like her — weathered by storms and in need of a lot of TLC.
After a quick glance around the empty road, she set her truck into park and stared. She let her eyes blur and tried to imagine how the old house must have looked once upon a time before the harsh South Texas sun baked its exterior. She wasn’t encouraged. Even seen from behind her dirty windshield, she could tell the one-story ranch needed a lot of work, and at the very least, a fresh coat of paint.
A lone tear streaked down her face, surprising her, and she sniffed. One last cry — she deserved that much. Then no more feeling sorry for herself. She had too much to do and a whole new life stretching in front of her.
A loud honk sounded and Katelyn swung her gaze to her rearview mirror to find that a dusty, older model pickup truck had pulled up behind her. She swiped away the tears with the back of her hand, and then stuck her arm out the window to wave the driver past.
Instead, the driver-side door opened and a tall Texan in faded jeans and a cream-colored cowboy hat stepped onto the pavement.
Katelyn cursed under her breath and quickly tilted down the mirror to see whether her mascara had smeared. She didn’t really care what a stranger thought — that was the old Katelyn. Still, some habits died hard.
When boot steps stopped beside her, she glanced up…and found herself trapped within a moss green gaze that raised the temperature within her cab a notch. The rest of him was just as captivating. Dark brown hair peeked from beneath his hat. His jaw was angular, his chin chiseled. Shallow crow’s feet surrounded those amazing eyes and crinkled when he frowned—as he was doing now. But they were wrinkles cause by the sun, not the weathering of a few years, like hers.
Damn! Here stood the first man she’d met since her separation who made her think of all the steamy possibilities, and he was too young.
She didn’t realize she’d cursed out loud until his soft chuckle washed over her like a silky caress. Her cheeks flamed instantly.
“Women don’t generally cuss me ’til after they know me better,” he said, his baritone voice thick as molasses.
The timbre and tone of his voice appealed too much. She lifted a single brow, trying for off-putting and hoping he didn’t notice her lashes were still wet from tears. “Obviously, they’re not too discerning.”
His smile dimmed and his eyes narrowed, sweeping over her face and body hunched behind the steering wheel. “Not from around here, are you?” he asked, leaning closer.
She reminded herself she was alone, in the middle of a country road, with a large, predatory-looking man looming over her—and she’d just insulted him. She hit her automatic lock button.
“Whoa,” he said, lifting his hands. “I didn’t mean to scare you, ma’am.”
Ma’am! Now she really did feel like the spinster librarian she was.
“Look.” He straightened away. “I just stopped to see if you were having car trouble.”
“Funny, but I wasn’t having any trouble at all ’til you stopped,” she said, making sure he understood her unsubtle dig, and hoping he’d take the hint and leave.
The cowboy looked around and then down the gravel road toward her home, before returning to give her a questioning glance. “You lost then? The main highway’s about three miles behind you.”
“Nope, I know exactly where I am.” She kept her response terse and lifted her chin. No way was she going to encourage the conversation to continue—no matter how handsome the man was—or more to the point, because he was so attractive. “Not that it’s any of your business. I was just double-checking the address.”
He pushed back his cowboy hat and leaned down again. “Well, I wouldn’t want you to waste any more of your valuable time,” he said, his gaze raking her face, “but you’re at 118 Amman Road. The letters are worn off the mailbox.”
The longer he stood there, the more certain she became she needed him gone. Something about him, his steady gaze and his large sturdy frame, made her…want…something more, something she was better off not having right now. “Then I’m in the right place,” she said, keeping her expression challenging.
His hand rubbed the back of his neck and he shook his head. “Well, I’ll be damned,” he said softly. When his green gaze returned, his expression was hard to read, but intense, almost searching.
Katelyn shivered. All that attention from a handsome man unnerved her. She needed time alone to dam up her defenses against her unwanted reactions. Handsome she’d had and wasn’t what she needed now.
“Seein’ as how you don’t need any help,” he said, “I’ll be on my way.” One last glance with a naked promise she couldn’t misinterpret, and he left…taking Katelyn’s breath right along with him.
In the mirror, her gaze clung to his broad back and nicely rounded backside until he reached the door of his cab and glanced back. She whipped away her gaze and hoped like hell he hadn’t caught her looking at his ass. Sinking in her seat, she burned with embarrassment while he passed by, giving her one last smoldering glance.
Katelyn’s heart slowed and her hands released their tight grip on the steering wheel.
He was just a man—he had nothing she needed or wanted—ever again. Except maybe sex. She did miss that. But she’d never have sex with entanglement again. Complicating that fact, she’d come to a small town to start her life anew and couldn’t afford the kind of scandal a fling with a younger man would cause.
Pushing thoughts of the tall cowboy aside, she pulled onto the long gravel drive and forced her mind back to what needed doing before she could rest that night. Hard work was what she needed—not anything the young cowboy had to offer.
And looking at her new home, she guessed she’d get plenty of cowboy antidote.