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Flashback: Animal (Contest — Three Winners!)
Tuesday, April 16th, 2024

So, I’m being lazy this morning. I’ve featured this story in a flashback before, and because I’m running low on time to finish a job, I decided to “cheat.” Hope you don’t mind the repeat. It has been a while…

I love my Montana Bounty Hunters. I really try hard to make each of them individual rather than cookie-cutter characters with different names. I also love to dream up unique takedowns for your reading pleasure and to showcase who these men are. One of my favorite scenes was “Animal chasing the bear”, which is part of the Montana Bounty Hunters’ cable TV series lore now. You know what I mean if you’ve read the books! Anyway, I’m sharing that scene today. It’s not long. Enjoy!

Animal

Animal

MONTANA BOUNTY HUNTERS: Authentic Men… Real Adventures…

A rough-around-the-edges bounty hunter takes a nature photographer on a wild ride.

Former SEAL, Russell “Animal” Hathcoat, retreated to a remote mountain cabin after leaving the Navy. Haunted by horrific images that replay in his nightmares of his last mission with his SEAL brothers, he intends to renovate the dilapidated cabin as penance and therapy, and to avoid rejoining the world around him. But then, someone who understands what he needs better than he does arrives to offer him a job.

Allie Travers loves the freedom and solitude of being a nature photographer and journalist—until the day she stares through her lens at a charging black bear. With her heart in her throat, she can only stand watching in horror, knowing she’ll never escape in time. But rescue comes in the form of a wild man who risks his life to frighten away the animal.

Once the danger is past, she’s told by his team of bounty hunters that she has more to fear than any animal in the woods. A felon is on the loose, and she has to accompany them to safety. Seeing an opportunity, Allie shadows the team as they hunt their prey deep in a national forest. Much to Animal’s dismay, more than just his protective instincts are aroused by the pretty photojournalist.

Contest

Are you all caught up reading the Montana Bounty Hunters in Bear Lodge & the spin-off series set in Dead Horse?

For a chance to win a download of one of the stories you may have missed in either series
(I’ll pick three winners!), tell me this:
What profession other than bounty hunters would you like to see in future Montana Bounty Hunters—Dead Horse branch, and beyond—
stories?

Here are all the Bear Lodge, Montana, Bounty Hunters!

MONTANA BOUNTY HUNTERS: Bear Lodge, MT
Authentic Men… Real Adventures…
Reaper: https://amzn.to/2NztLpv
Dagger: https://amzn.to/2zo6Dav
Reaper’s Ride: https://amzn.to/2KKkisI
Cochise: https://amzn.to/2zq4avV
Hook: https://amzn.to/2UrpyYh
Wolf: https://amzn.to/2yUTjr5
Animal: https://amzn.to/2H4Roob
Big Sky Wedding: https://amzn.to/33GprwK
Quincy: https://amzn.to/2QlleM8
Brian: https://amzn.to/2ZV8m2G

Excerpt from Animal:

The moment Taco lowered his nose to the ground, following Tibbets’s trail from the camper’s metal steps, they’d realized the man had headed straight into the woods, afoot, rather than driving out.

They’d left Dagger, Lacey, and Cochise behind to watch for any movement in town, and to keep an eye out for any of his relatives who looked ready to head north with supplies to help him out. The rest of the team members grabbed their gear from their vehicles and began tracking Tibbets into Flathead National Forest.

Animal didn’t mind the rough conditions. He was accustomed to long marches and sleeping on the ground. None of the hunters, even Carly Stenberg, complained about the conditions, even after they’d endured a chilly rain the previous day. They’d dried their clothes beside a fire last night, reasonably assured they were still a day’s hike from catching up to Tibbets. Conversation had flowed around him, but he hadn’t felt the need to try to contribute.

This was a tight, well-trained crew, and they knew each other well. But they seemed to understand he wasn’t the chatty type. He rather liked the fact they let him be.

They came to the edge of the woods. A large meadow stretched before them, mountains in the background. The meadow was broken on one side by ridges of exposed rock.

“We got company,” Reaper said quietly. They all held back, remaining hidden in the brush. Reaper lifted an arm and pointed.

Animal pulled out his tactical telescope and followed Reaper’s direction, at last spotting a slender figure standing beside an outcropping. Not their mark. A woman. She stood in front of a tripod and peered into a camera. She had wheat-colored hair drawn back into a messy braid. She wore a red plaid shirt and a khaki vest over blue jeans and boots.

Suddenly, she jerked back her head, giving him a glimpse of her profile. Her eyebrows were lowered, her mouth dropping as she stared down the hill.

He turned his telescope toward whatever had caught her attention and immediately understood her concern.

A baby black bear ambled into the clearing, heading upward toward her location.

“Where’s mama?” he whispered.

As though answering his question, a loud bellow sounded from the forest farther down the tree line. A large bear ran out, huffing and bellowing, heading toward the woman.

He didn’t have even a millisecond to think through a better plan. Animal dumped his pack and ran into the clearing, tearing at his shirt. When he’d ripped off the buttons down the front, he flapped the edges, trying to make himself look bigger. “Ha! Ha!” he yelled as loud as he could to draw the bear’s attention away from the woman.

Mama bear bounced on her front paws and spun toward him.

“Don’t shoot unless you have to!” Animal tossed over his shoulder to Reaper.

“Don’t get in my line of fire!” Reaper shouted back.

“Don’t shoot her!” the woman screamed.

“You shut up!” Animal yelled, still running, still flapping. Didn’t she realize he was trying to draw the bear’s attention away from her?

The bear’s head moved from Animal, to Reaper behind him, and again to the woman, likely trying to decide who was the biggest danger to her cub.

Animal roared and flapped and moved a little closer.

The baby bear squalled and changed direction, running for his mama.

Just when Animal feared the bear would charge, she spun and ran into the woods, her cub running right behind her.

Animal halted, breathing hard. He gave another flap of his shirt. “Ha! Ha!” he shouted, hoping she’d been startled bad enough not to turn around.

Then he heard a whirring sound, coming from up the rise. He turned his head toward the woman. The sound came from her camera. Animal gave her a fierce glare then began to stalk up the rise.

When he reached her, she straightened and flashed him a wide smile. “Thanks for that. Thought for a second there I was going to be lunch.”

“What the hell!” he bellowed, anger shot through him. Didn’t she have a clue how close to being “lunch” he’d been, trying to rescue her? And all she’d thought about was taking her damn pictures?

Her eyebrows shot upward, and she stood still.

Behind him, he heard more of his team stomping up the hill. He should have turned and walked away. Should have let Reaper handle getting her packed up and off the mountain. Away from him.

Instead, anger vibrated through him. He glanced at the gear strewn around her feet. “Who the hell comes out to the wilderness without a goddamn gun?”

“The only shots I plan to take are with my camera,” she said icily, lifting her chin.

He ground his teeth as his face heated.

“Wish I’d been shooting video though,” she said. “The footage would’ve gone viral. Do you chase bears often?”

The End! (Of TYSON’S MISSION, that is) (Contest + Excerpt)
Wednesday, April 10th, 2024

Around all the company we had leading up to and then after the eclipse (I have the T-shirt and the poster!), I wrote the last chapter of the book coming your way on April 23rd!

It’s an exciting one, set in the Yucatan jungle. My heroine is feisty, independent, and brave, and my hero is a SEAL—nuff said about him, right?

Do you see the book’s cover?! He’s every bit, Tyson Quigley. I also found a background photo that perfectly captures the setting of the story. And that look he’s wearing? That’s when he puts his foot down.

I can’t wait for you to read the story. It’s filled with interesting tidbits about the work my heroine is involved with and characters you’ll love and hate. There are some pulse-pounding moments—sexy times and ones filled with danger. And there’s humor. You know I can’t write without a bit of that thrown in, too.

So, my question to you is, have you pre-ordered your copy? For a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card, tell me whether you’ve pre-ordered or tell me what about the description below appeals to you.

Tyson’s Mission

Tyson's Mission

A former Navy SEAL is tapped to provide security for a team of archeologists working to uncover Mayan ruins deep in a Mexican jungle that a local drug cartel is targeting.

After surviving a catastrophic helicopter accident, former Navy SEAL Tyson Quigley is taking well to his new life with the Brotherhood Protectors in the Yellowstone, Montana, office. Life’s looking up. He’s working with old teammates and feeling stronger and more himself every day.

Then he gets a call from his university professor brother, who is worried about a colleague working on an archeological dig in southern Mexico. The team has had problems with thefts of equipment and supplies. Now, one of the dig team members has been kidnapped and held for ransom, but they quickly figure out the finger they were sent in the package demanding payment is from an already dead person. Now, they have no idea whether their team member is alive or dead and worry that the attacks on the site aren’t over. After a quick conference with his Brotherhood Protector teammates, Ty heads down to Mexico to pose as his brother’s friend’s boyfriend to provide her protection for the remainder of the dig.

Cara Woodward doesn’t need a babysitter. Sure, things have gotten scary since a team member was abducted, but she thinks having a bodyguard is overkill. Their sponsors are pulling the plug on the excavation due to the kidnapping, so they’re working furiously to close the site for the season. Tyson’s everywhere she is, and it’s getting on her nerves. His looming presence is distracting, to say the least. He’s too handsome, too intense.

As the dig team continues documenting their work before they pack up and leave, they suffer a series of attacks—this time, too close to Cara for Ty’s comfort. He’s locking her down, with no daylight between them for the duration.

Pre-order your copy now!
Read the opening scene now!

Here’s their first meeting…

In the distance, an engine sounded, but it was coming from the north rather than the south, where the dig team would be coming from. “What now?” she muttered and headed toward the motor pool—which was no more than the flattest, unforested spot on the edge of the camp. They’d erected a makeshift fence around the motor pool with cleaned cans from the mess tent hanging from the wire to alert the camp to anyone looking to steal parts or an entire vehicle, which had happened the previous year.

A jeep pulled up to the gate, and the driver rapped the horn once.

The jeep’s poorly painted camo pattern meant their visitor was Gino Acevedo, the local man of all trades with whom Cara met when she needed manpower or materials.

Cookie kept pace with Cara as they moved toward the gate where the jeep stopped.

Gino stepped down with a huge grin on his face. “I have a surprise for you, Señora Woodward.”

The passenger side door that faced away slammed. A tall figure appeared and circled the front of the vehicle. It was a man—a rather tall, well-built man. As he neared, Cara’s breath caught. Lord have mercy, the man was handsome.

His mouth moved into a tight line before stretching into a half-smile as he drew closer. Then, before she had a chance to wonder why he was moving in so close, he reached out, gripped her shoulders, and kissed her.

 

Ty barely had time to note that Cara was a very attractive woman before he made his move. She appeared to be in shock. Her eyes widened as he pressed a light kiss against her mouth. Damn Bradon. He hadn’t called to warn her.

He put his arms around her and hugged her to his chest. Then he bent toward her ear. “Play along,” he whispered.

Her head jerked back, and her eyes narrowed as she searched his face.

“I know I shouldn’t have sprung this on you,” he said louder for the benefit of anyone watching. “But I knew you’d be short-handed, and Bradon got me set up on a flight to come down and help with the tear-down.”

He moved back but kept his arm slung around her waist as he turned to greet the other female, who was tanned with spiked, platinum-blond hair. He reached out his free hand, “I’m Ty Quigley, a friend of Cara’s,” he said, giving extra emphasis to the word friend.

The woman grinned widely as she gave Ty a handshake that would’ve caused a lesser man to grimace. “Nice to meet you. Everyone calls me Cookie. Cara never mentioned she had a hunk like you at home.”

Cara wriggled inside his embrace, but he clapped his hand on her hip to keep her leaning against his body. He had to sell this with or without her cooperation. “She’s probably still a little pissed at me after the last time we spoke. I had some time off from work and thought I’d better come down here to mend some fences if you know what I mean.”

“Well, that’s some gesture,” Cookie said. “If it doesn’t work out…” She waggled her eyebrows and then gave a gust of laughter. “Any chance you have a brother…?”

Report Card & Open Contests
Sunday, April 7th, 2024

Last couple weeks…

  • I wrote quadruple the amount of pages I usually write for Tyson’s Mission and have been putting in 12-14 hour days, just on writing, this week!
  • I read more stories submitted for the Secret Identities anthology—but did not finish as planned!
  • I finished one editing project for another author.
  • I’ve created art every day for #The100DayProject.

This next week…

  • Watch the eclipse with family—weather permitting!
  • I will finish Tyson’s Mission which releases on April 23rd!  
  • I will work on two editing projects for other authors!
  • I must finish reading the rest of the stories for my next anthology, Secret Identities.
  • I will continue creating small art daily for #The100DayProject.

Again, it’ll be a crazy-busy week! I’m ready for a vacation!

Open Contests

  1. Word Search: Colors of Paint (Contest) — Last day to enter! Win an Amazon gift card!
  2. Easter Stories (Contest) — Last day to enter! Win an Amazon gift card!
  3. Saturday Puzzle-Contest: What I’m bingeing now…Last day to enter! Win an Amazon gift card!
  4. Happy Easter & March Into April (Contest)Last day to enter! Win an Amazon gift card!
  5. Another lost art? (Contest) Plus, Open Contests! — This one ends soon! Win an Amazon gift card!
  6. Flashback: Gunn’s Mission (Contest) — This one ends soon! Win a FREE book!
  7. Word Search: Eclipse Words (Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
  8. Happy Tell a Lie Day! (Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
  9. First Contact Day (Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
  10. Saturday Puzzle-Contest: Eclipse Fantasy — Win an Amazon gift card!
Flashback: Gunn’s Mission (Contest)
Tuesday, April 2nd, 2024

UPDATE: The winner is…Stacy Hartley!
*~*~*

Tyson's Mission

I’ve had tons of fun writing stories within Elle James’s Brotherhood Protectors world. At the moment, I’m working on wrapping up my next entry, Tyson’s Mission, which will be released on the 23rd of this month! Have you pre-ordered your copy?

And since I’m buried in writing the story, which is taking me away from a lot of fun stuff like family time, painting, and bingeing Andromeda, I thought today would be fun to reacquaint you with the stories I’ve written within that HUGE series of books—at least the ones I’ve written. Today, I’m highlighting the one that released just last October. I’m not even sure where the idea came from to write a story about a team of scientists dealing with a murder in their midst atop an ice floe in the Artic Ocean, but someone had to do it, right?

Gunn’s Mission

Gunn's Mission

After surviving a catastrophic helicopter accident that left him scarred and unable to continue serving on the Teams, former Navy SEAL Gunnar “Gunn” Nielson is settling into life as a Brotherhood Protector in the Yellowstone, Montana, office.

When a request from the U.S. government arrives for a protection detail for someone with extensive cold-weather experience, Gunn, born and raised in Minnesota, is tapped for the job. He soon discovers that he will be the lone protector for a group of scientists working at a research facility on a floating island in the Arctic Ocean.

After discovering that one of her team members was murdered, Facility Chief Maddie Russo is grateful for Gunn’s expertise. Thinking the murder might have been committed by someone trying to interfere with a military-sponsored study, she and Gunn have to keep her team safe as the work continues.

Maddie and Gunn grow closer as the weather turns colder and the threats to the facility and its inhabitants continue.

Read an excerpt and order a copy here!

All the Brotherhood Protectors stories I’ve written, so far…

Click on the covers to learn more about them!

  Big Sky Wedding
Defending Evangeline Victoria's Six Guarding Hannah
Gunn's Mission

Contest

For a chance to win one of the stories shown above, tell me whether you’ve read any of these, and what settings/worlds you prefer!

Happy Easter & March Into April (Contest)
Sunday, March 31st, 2024

UPDATE: The winner is…Jackie Wisherd!
*~*~*

Before I get started with the end of month rundown,
Happy Easter to all who celebrate!

March

What Happens in Bozeman

Work-related:

  1. I completed work on What Happens in Bozeman (Book #3 of We Are Dead Horse, MT) and published it!
  2. I began work on Tyson’s Mission, my next Brotherhood Protectors book!
  3. I continued to read short stories for inclusion in my upcoming Secret Identities: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology.
  4. I completed 3 editing projects for other authors in March.

Health-related:

  1. I haven’t done well taking care of myself this month. I ate too many salty, fatty foods and didn’t monitor my blood pressure!
  2. My sleep suffered this month, likely because of diet and lack of exercise.
  3. The only good thing I did was drinking one cup of Turmeric tea a day.

Happiness-related: 

  1. I continued working on the #the100dayproject art challenge.
  2. Here are some examples of art projects I completed in March.

 

April

Tyson's Mission 
For work-related, I plan:

  1. To complete writing Tyson’s Mission, my next Brotherhood Protectors, book, which releases on April 23rd!
  2. To complete 4 editing projects in March!
  3. To finish reading and selecting stories from among the submissions for the upcoming collection—Secret Identities: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology!

For health related, I plan:

  1. To start back on my Weight Watchers diet, because it’s time to get serious! I HAVE to get back in the saddle!
  2. To reduce salt and processed food, and incorporate foods good for blood pressure (spinach, broccoli, bananas) and my liver (apple cider vinegar, flax seeds, sunflower seeds).
  3. To begin daily workouts using my recumbent bike and some chair yoga exercises.
  4. To take my BP every day and log it!

For happiness-related, I plan: 

  1. To continue #the100daychallenge where I’ll be painting something every single day!
  2. To spend time with extended family during the ECLIPSE!

Contest

Comment on anything you’ve read in this post. Tell me what you’re doing to make yourself happier and healthier, or tell me what you plan to read in April

Like I said, comment on anything for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card!

Krysten Lindsay Hager: New Adult Hockey Romance Cover Reveal!
Wednesday, March 27th, 2024

I’m so excited to share with you the cover reveal for my new adult hockey romance, Falling for a Star in the City. It’s the second book in the Stars in the City series, which are interconnected standalone books. This book features Paige Kramar, who was the best friend in Stars in the City. I think you’ll love this grumpy/sunshine sports romance.

Check out the blurb…

Paige thought she had it all: a job on the soap opera Charmed Lives and a boyfriend who was trying to get discovered as a pop star. However, then her part on the show is reduced to reoccurring status and her family pushes her to leave her acting dreams behind to major in journalism—what they call a “real job.” Then her relationship with her wannabe rock star boyfriend, Walker, ends only for her to find out he signed a recording contract right after their breakup. To add insult to injury, she reads online that his new album is about their relationship.

She gets an internship in the sports department at the TV station where she meets a college hockey player named Viktor who has trust issues from a past relationship. Now with Walker’s rock star dreams taking off, it leaves her questioning her own play-it-safe tendencies, her acting career aspirations, and her relationships. Everyone else seems to have it together but her.

Through her internship, she keeps running into Viktor. Paige and Viktor begin to confide in each other, which soon leaves them falling for each other, but Paige worries their worlds are too different for them to work as a couple. Plus, there’s the issue of Walker trying to back together with her, but has fame changed him?

Meanwhile, Paige has a minor accident which leaves her questioning if she ever really wanted a flashy lifestyle or if it was what she felt she was supposed to want. Now she must figure out what she really needs to be happy and fulfilled in life. Can Paige find both her purpose & true love?

You can pre-order the book here:
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Falling-Star-City-Hockey-Romance-ebook/dp/B0CVXHF8DL
Amazon Can:  https://www.amazon.ca/Falling-Star-City-Hockey-Romance-ebook/dp/B0CVXHF8DL
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Falling-Star-City-Hockey-Romance-ebook/dp/B0CVXHF8DL
Add it to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/208865198-falling-for-a-star-in-the-city

About the Author

Krysten Lindsay Hager is a bestselling author of YA and contemporary romance. She writes romance because she loves bringing people swoony moments and hope-filled happily ever afters. She writes about falling in love, fame, fitting in, frenemies, first loves, and finding your way in the world. She loves reading, watching movies, and lipstick.

Website: https://www.krystenlindsay.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/krystenlindsay/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/krystenlindsay/

A Reminder for Your Weekend Enjoyment! (Contest)
Friday, March 22nd, 2024

UPDATE: The winner is…Jennifer Beyer!
*~*~*

Thank you to EVERYONE who already picked up their copy of What Happens in Bozeman! I appreciate your support and hope you had a great time reading it! Here are some snippets of reviews from a couple of readers who loved this visit to Dead Horse, Montana. (Thank you, Elinda and Pam!)

What follows is a series of events that will have you laughing out loud. ~ Elinda M
Loved the town of Dead Horse. Its residents and Sara and her classmates were adorable! ~ Pam B

Yeah, I know…kids in a romance? Shouldn’t that be self-exclusionary? Hey, it did not get in the way of sexiness in the story. Promise.

What you may not know is that a lot of what inspired the character of Sara and her classmates’ antics comes from the three girls who share my home. The oldest cringes when I tell the story of her trying to have a conversation with a caterpillar with her ear held as close to its head as possible. She’d seen The Bee Movie and couldn’t understand why the caterpillar was ignoring her. Of course, her grandma told her it was because their mouths are so small that the sounds they make can’t be heard by ordinary humans. So, the kittens and the princess bed thing had its true origins… You’ll have to read the story to understand what I’m talking about.

So, if you haven’t read the story yet and are looking for something fun to read this weekend, I think my book will fit the bill nicely!

What Happens in Bozeman

What Happens in Bozeman

Get your copy here!

Contest

For a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card, tell me a fun story about something a child you know said or did.