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SPOTLIGHT ~ More than a Phoenix by Ashlyn Chase

   

 
What do you get when you take

Two phoenix shifter brothers

Throw in one powerful witch

And one…monkey shifter?

Mallory Summers is losing it. She’s discovered she can talk to dead people—and she might be able to shift to monkey form. Firefighter Dante Fierro knows the quirky beauty isn’t crazy—just supernatural. But what would she think if she knew his secret?

Hothead Noah Fierro has his own sparks flying with gorgeous ER doctor Kizzy Samuels. While the attraction is mutual, so are the supernatural secrets. With this much sizzle going on, how do you not get burned?

Fighting fires is easy… Finding love is the hard part.

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Excerpt:

Mallory Summers was trying to chat with a nice young man about the weather, but couldn’t help being distracted by two old biddies sitting on the bus bench, peaking at her from under their umbrellas.

One old woman leaned toward the other and whispered loudly, “Tsk. Tsk. Such a sweet young thing…”

“It’s a shame,” said the other one.

Shame? Should I be ashamed for chatting up a nice-looking guy and offering to share my umbrella? Just to make sure the gossips knew how unashamed she was, she turned back to the young man and spoke louder. “Yeah, I saw the weather report this morning. It’s supposed to rain until about noon.”

The guy just nodded. He was a little hard to engage in conversation.

Still, she persisted. “That will probably keep people at home, so my work at the mall will be slow.”

Out of the corner of her eye, she spotted one of the women waddling up to a guy in uniform. They were farther away, so she couldn’t hear what they were saying.

A few moments later, he approached her slowly. He was a handsome devil. She could only imagine what the interfering old woman had said. Probably warned him not to be taken in by the young lady’s flirtatious ways.

“Uh, hi,” the guy said, smiling. He had stunning brown eyes, with thick, dark lashes most women would envy. One of the patches on his uniform looked just like the one on her uncle’s Boston Fire Department uniform.

She suddenly realized he looked familiar. “Hi. Do I know you?”

The young man paused. His smile turned into a grin, lighting up his handsome face. “I know you. You’re Mallory Summers.”

“Right—and you are…”

“Dante Fierro, and I’m wondering who you’re talking to.”

“Huh?” Well, that’s rude. Why should anybody care? She was about to say as much when she turned back to the guy in question to apologize for everyone else’s bad manners—but he was gone.

“Where did he go?” she asked.

“Where did who go?”

“The man… I don’t know his name. And—wait a minute… You’re the Dante Fierro from high school?”

“Yup. So you do remember me.”

“Of course.”

“Do you always hold conversations with blank air?”

“What the heck are you talking about?”

“Mallory, these ladies have seen you at this bus stop three times, talking to yourself. They won’t call the cops, because you’re not doing anything illegal, and they don’t want to call an ambulance, which would be expensive, but they’re worried about you.”

Mallory jammed her hands on her hips and strode over to the two old ladies. “You should be minding your own business.”

They leaned away from her as if they might catch an airborne virus.

“Mallory…” Dante gentled his voice. “I don’t live far from here. Why don’t you come over for coffee and we can talk.”

“Because I have to go to work. I take two buses to get to my job at the Union Mall.”

“I can drive you.”

The weather didn’t look like it was going to let up, and a nice warm car sounded good. She shrugged. “I don’t want to put you out. You look like you’re on your way to work too.”

“I’m on my way home, actually. Come on. It’s no trouble.”

She smiled. “Well, now that I realize who you are, it would probably be okay to accept a ride. After all, it’s not like you’re a complete stranger.”

“Good.” He stuck out his elbow like he was escorting her to a fancy ball. “Let’s go.”

She slipped her hand into the crook of his arm and gave the old busybodies a glare as they passed.

He lived around the corner in a nice two-family house on L Street, a stone’s throw from the main drag, which bordered the beach.

“I shouldn’t stay for coffee. I can get coffee at the mall. Is that your car?” She nodded toward a black Camaro with bright-red racing stripes down the side.

“Yup. My brother Noah calls it my wife.”

“Your wife? Why?”

“Because I named her Joanna, and I take good care of her. He says it’s because she eats up half my paycheck.”

She giggled. “Okay. Well, nice to meet you, Joanna.” As they approached the passenger’s side, she realized how talking to an inanimate object might also make her look like a crazy person—and he’d already caught her talking to, what…a dead guy? Maybe someone who stepped in front of a bus many years ago… She still wasn’t sure what was going on. Could two old ladies be punking her?

He just smiled, dug the key fob out of his pocket, and opened the door for her.

She settled herself on the comfortable leather seat and looked around. His car was indeed in pristine condition. It didn’t have that new car smell, but it looked as if it could have.

He jumped into the driver’s seat and pulled out of the driveway. “Where to?”

“I work at the mall in Somerville. I thought I already said so.”

He drove in the general direction of the expressway, but stayed quiet for a few moments. At last, he asked, “Mallory, are you sure you should be going to work?”

She reared back and stared at him. What was he saying? And did she want to know? “Yeah. Why wouldn’t I?”

He glanced over at her. “It’s just that… Well, you… I mean…”

“Just say it, Dante. You think I’m nuts.”

“No, not nuts. I wouldn’t put it that way, but maybe…I don’t know, stressed?”

“Nope. I’m an artist, and having a creative outlet decreases stress. To pay the bills, I take professional portraits at the mall. Kids’ photos mostly. But I like kids, so that’s not very stressful either.”

“Please don’t be offended, but…are you on drugs?”

She burst out laughing. “No. Are you?”



About the Author

Ashlyn Chase was a registered nurse for twenty years.  During those years she wrote articles for professional journals and a thesis, but eventually, thank goodness, discovered the joy and freedom of writing fiction.

Ashlyn considers herself lucky.  Her degree in behavioral sciences is a combination of psychology and sociology, so she has studied people most of her life.   She doesn’t have to write out exhaustive character sketches to understand her characters or predict how they will behave.  That doesn’t mean they don’t surprise her.  Sometimes they take her on grand unexpected journeys. 

Ashlyn has learned to go with the flow.  To enjoy the journey is not only one of her writing goals, but also a challenge in life.  She tries to follow where the story takes her.  Her identified theme involves characters who reinvent themselves.  And why not?  She has reinvented herself numerous times—from artist, to nurse, to hypnotherapist, to author, and she has lived in seventeen different places.  At last, she’s all settled down and comfy in New England.

Is there a grand design or do we decide our own fates?  Perhaps if the powers-that-be have a plot, then they also give us the right to revise it.

10 Surprising Facts About Romance Novels

Ashlyn’s Take on the Value of Romance Novels

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RECENT RELEASE ~ One More Moment (Band on the Run #3) by Samantha Chase

  One More Moment

(Band on the Run #3)

by Samantha Chase

Julian Grayson is taking a break

     …from his cheating fiancée

     …from his band

     …from his life in the spotlight

Charlotte Clark is devoted to her work

     …to save the world

     …to help the homeless

     …to get a broken man back on his feet

When Charlotte Clark offers to pay for Julian Grayson’s coffee, the world-famous drummer assumes she wants something from him. But Charlotte has no idea who he is, and Julian can’t resist keeping up the charade—being incognito is a novelty and a relief.
He’ll have to tell her…eventually. But as Charlotte cheerfully undertakes to transform his life, Julian realizes there’s something about her that gives him what he hasn’t felt in years: hope.

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Excerpt:

One More Moment ~ Samantha Chase

In front of her, the guy reached into his back pocket and cursed.

Loudly.

“Um…cancel my order,” he told the cashier, his voice so low and deep it was almost a growl. “I forgot my wallet.”

Without hesitation, Charlotte stepped forward and smiled at the young cashier. “Hi, Carly,” she began, reading the girl’s nametag, “if it’s okay, you can add his order to mine.” She was feeling pretty good about herself and her gesture, but when she turned and looked up at the man she was helping, she couldn’t help but gasp.

Jet-black hair and silver eyes—which were currently glaring at her. There wasn’t even a hint of a smile and if anything, he was borderline snarling.

“What do you think you’re doing?” he asked.

Charlotte had met enough people who were down on their luck to know that sometimes pride was a huge deterrent to them accepting help in any form. “I heard you say you had forgotten your wallet and just figured I’d help.”

“Why?”

Her shoulders relaxed even as her smile grew and she laughed softly. “What do you mean, ‘why’?”

“Ma’am?” the cashier asked. “What can I get you? The line’s getting backed up.”

“Oh, right. Sorry.” Although she was a little miffed at being called “ma’am.” At twenty-seven, she didn’t consider herself old enough for that title, but she’d deal with that later. “I’ll have a tall mocha Frappuccino and a blueberry muffin, please.” Then she handed her credit card over before looking back at the angry man.

“I don’t need anyone to buy me coffee,” he growled.

Undeterred, she smiled and accepted her card back from the cashier. “Oh, please. I know I get cranky when I can’t have my coffee, and you look like you could use it. It’s not a big deal. Really.” She stepped around him to go wait at the other end of the counter for their order. For a minute, she didn’t think he would follow, and she had to hide her smile when he finally did.

“I could have just gone and grabbed my wallet and come back,” he argued. His voice was low, but there was still heat in it.

She shrugged and offered him a smile. “Now you don’t have to.”

They stood in silence until their order was placed on the counter, and Charlotte thanked the barista and then smiled at the man. He still hadn’t picked up his coffee or muffins, and she wondered just how stubborn he was going to be.

“Look, if it bothers you that much, just…pay it forward,” she said.

“Pay it what?”

“Forward. You know, next time you’re in line and notice someone in need of a hand, help them out.” Her smile broadened even as he looked at her as if she were crazy. “Anyway, enjoy and have a great day!”

Without waiting for an answer, she walked out of the coffee shop and across the street toward the park benches where she could sit and see the beach and enjoy the fresh air. It really was a beautiful day out and there was no way she wanted to waste it sitting inside.

Sitting down, she pulled the muffin out of the bag and was about to break off a piece when someone sat down beside her.

Her unkempt man.

With her sunglasses on, she was certain he couldn’t read her surprise, and she did her best to sound casual as she asked, “Would you like to join me?” For the life of her, she had no idea why she would even suggest such a thing. It was obvious he was annoyed with her and really, just because she tended to be trusting didn’t mean it was always the right thing to do. For all of her speculation, she had no idea who this man was.

“What is your deal?” he asked a little suspiciously, but not snarling or growling nearly as much as he had been inside the coffee shop.

“My deal?”

He nodded. “Why’d you buy my breakfast? What’s it to you if I didn’t have my wallet?”

For a moment Charlotte could only stare. Was this guy for real? Here she was doing a nice thing and he was giving her crap for it?

“It was just coffee and two muffins,” she reasoned pleasantly. “It wasn’t a big deal, and like I said, just pay it forward.”

That should have been the end of it, but considering he didn’t move or say anything, she figured it wasn’t.

Now she started to feel a little uneasy.

Looking around, she tried to see how many people were around. It was early and people were out walking on the sidewalk and down on the sand, so she relaxed. She could handle this.

“What is it you want from me?” he finally asked, his scowl back in place.

Charlotte turned to look back up at him and frowned herself. “Excuse me?”

He sighed in agitation. “You heard me. What is it you want? You want me to sign something?”

Sign something? What the…?

“Look, Mr.…?” She paused and waited for him to fill in the blank, but when he didn’t, she was the one to sigh. “I’m Charlotte, by the way. Charlotte Clark. I’d prefer not to keep calling you ‘angry guy’ in my head.” And when he still didn’t answer, she stuffed her muffin back in the bag, grabbed her coffee, and stood. “I honestly didn’t mean to offend you, okay? I just thought it would be a nice thing to do and then we’d both be on our way—me feeling good and you feeling thankful. Obviously, I was wrong. So… I’m sorry if I was mistaken and if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go and enjoy my breakfast elsewhere.”

Her heart was hammering in her chest as she moved around him and walked back along the sidewalk to the crosswalk in hopes of finding someplace else to sit and eat. The whole time she complained in her head, because she seriously enjoyed sitting and watching the waves crash and all the sights and smells of the beach.

Stupid angry guy messing with my good morning.


About the Author:

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller/contemporary romance writer Samantha Chase released her debut novel, Jordan’s Return, in November 2011. Although she waited until she was in her 40’s to publish for the first time, writing has been a lifelong passion. Her motivation to take that step was her students: teaching creative writing to elementary age students all the way up through high school and encouraging those students to follow their writing dreams gave Samantha the confidence to take that step as well.

When she’s not working on a new story, she spends her time reading contemporary romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.

Author Links:

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RECOMMENDED READ ~ Must Love Babies by Lynnette Austin

One of my favourite reads this year to date is MUST LOVE BABIES by Lynnette Austin 
~ Tracy : BLP

Must Love Babies by Lynnette Austin

This baby’s not the only one in need of a cuddle…

Brant Wylder is a bachelor and loving it! He’s in Misty Bottoms, Georgia, property-hunting for his vintage car repair shop when he gets the call. His sister’s been in an accident, and Brant has to drop everything and take care of his five-month-old nephew. That’s the end of the bachelor lifestyle.

Bridal boutique owner Molly Stiles is all business all the time, until she sees that Brant’s in trouble. In this Southern town, nobody ever has to go it alone. And besides, how can she resist that beautiful baby in the arms of a beautiful man…?

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Excerpt:

Molly stood beneath a magnolia tree, her face tipped to catch the moonlight. The breath caught in his throat, and for one fanciful second, Brant imagined a mythical princess or fairy.

He shook his head. The woman was real, and he wanted a dance, wanted to hold her in his arms. A little flirting? Harmless.

Stepping out of the shadows, he made his way to her.

“Beautiful night, huh?”

“Perfect.” Slowly, she turned, a smile on her face.

“How about a dance?”

She hesitated.

“I’m not asking for a lifelong commitment, sugar. Just a single dance under the stars. The night’s made for dancing.”

“It is, isn’t it?”

He caught her hand in his, amazed at its softness against his work-roughened one. “In the interest of full disclosure, I’m not the world’s greatest dancer, but you shouldn’t lose any toes.” He glanced at her sequined stilettos, showcased by her cocktail-length dress. “Don’t know how you even walk in those, let alone put on the miles you do, but I have to say that all mankind is grateful.”

Smiling, Molly peeked at her shoes. “They’re awesome, aren’t they?”

He nodded. “You can dance in them?”

“I could run a marathon in these.”

“Okay, then.” The moon shone through Spanish moss that dripped from the live oaks, forming a lacy pattern on the dewy grass.

Kelly Clarkson’s “A Moment Like This” played over the sound system. Reaching the dance floor, Brant slid an arm around her waist and drew her in, breathed in her scent. He swung her out and brought her back in one smooth motion, felt her quick laugh in the pit of his stomach. The music slowed when the band segued into John Legend’s “All of Me,” and he drew her close.

Molly fit perfectly in his arms. She lived in Georgia and he in Tennessee, and that made her safe. And if the plans he and his brothers were working on panned out? Still nothing to worry about since she lived in Savannah. When she rested her head against his chest, he wondered if she could hear the rapid thump of his heart. Ms. Molly was hot, hot, hot.

His hand slid a little lower, and without missing a beat, she relocated it to her waist.

Molly smelled of a midnight garden with just a touch of naughty. His body responded, and he willed himself to think about something else. “How’s the city?”

“Savannah?” She shrugged. “I live in Misty Bottoms now. I opened a bridal boutique. Today’s bride was my first.” She grinned, dimples creasing her cheeks.

The dance ended, and he reluctantly released Molly. “I’m driving back to Tennessee tomorrow.”

“Speaking of driving, thanks for taxiing the last of the rehearsal dinner’s partiers home last night. I heard they celebrated pretty hard at Duffy’s.”

“No problem.”

“I need to stop at my car before I go back inside. I left the little silver heart I attach to the bridal gown’s garment bag in my glove box.”

Brant walked beside her in the soft night air, a hand at her elbow, while the band played Blake Shelton’s “God Gave Me You.”

He lowered his head. “Before we call it a night, I’d love to see the rose garden our friend Cole salvaged.”

“What a mess, but after a lot of hard work it’s incredible again.”

The scent of roses surrounding them, they strolled through the yard. In the silver light of the moon, the flowers glowed and took on an almost magical, fairy-tale illusion. The house shimmered and welcomed, like the true Southern lady she was. Interlacing his fingers with Molly’s, peace enveloped Brant.

They wandered across the expanse of lawn and through the blooms in comfortable silence.

From the parking area, he heard the sound of engines starting, of tires crunching on the long drive. “Looks like it’s about time for lights-out. We’d better head back so you can finish up.”

A slight breeze caused Molly to shiver, and happy for the excuse, Brant wrapped an arm around her and pulled her a little closer, surprised when she didn’t pull away.

Reaching her yellow-and-white Mini Countryman, he made to open her door, then changed his mind, leaned in and gave her a quick kiss, one that should have been impersonal. Friendly. Instead, fire shot through him.

He pulled back, unsure whether he should be relieved or horrified that the expression on her face mirrored his own stampeding feelings. Clearing his throat, he said, “I’m taking care of a few loose ends in the morning, then heading back to Tennessee. And I already said that, didn’t I?”

“Yes, you did. The kiss was nice, thanks, but you don’t need to worry. I won’t show up naked at your hotel door.”

His breath caught.

She grinned, and he understood she knew exactly the effect she was having on him.

“I—” His phone vibrated. “Whoops. Sorry, but I’d better take this. My brothers probably forgot something. Organization isn’t their strong suit. If you’ll excuse me.”

“Sure.”

“Hello? Dad?” As he spoke, he made his way to a gnarly old oak. His father’s voice was gruff, almost as if he’d been crying. Panic grabbed Brant by the throat. “What’s wrong?


BLP REVIEW ~ Tracy 

I know from some reviews that I’ve read that this wasn’t everyone’s cuppa but I have to say I loved Must Love Babies!!!! 

Brant Wylder was settled and happy living his bachelor life and working with his brothers. 
Molly Stiles has a solid plan of getting her business up and running and not getting married ’til she’s at least 30.
Then they met and things went to pot where their plans were concerned. 

This was a slow brewing, sweet romance with two likable main characters, a fun supporting cast and of course, baby Jax, who was a show stealer! With all that you would expect from a small town by way of support, help and a little bit of helpful interference, this was a great read that I definitely recommend reading.

I haven’t read any of the books that this series has spun from – this was in fact my first Lynnette Auston read and I’m really looking forward to more in this series as well as going back to check our the authors earlier works. 

This gets 5* from me!! 


About the AuthorLynnette Austin

Once upon a time, a handsome prince walked up to the Tastee Freeze window and asked the lovely princess—who was working there to earn money to redecorate the castle—for a chocolate milkshake and a date. She said yes to both, and they lived happily ever after.

Okay, maybe I embellished a little—the princess didn’t actually live in a castle—but it’s no wonder I write romances with their happy endings. My prince and I are still together.

We had one beautiful son whom we lost in 2006. Aaron brought untold love and happiness into our lives. He was one of those brave firefighters who run into the flames as others are fleeing.

Dave and I both grew up in Pennsylvania’s Alleghany Mountains. From there, we moved to New York, then to the Rockies in Wyoming. Presently we divide our time between Naples, Florida’s beaches and Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.

I have a Master’s in Educational Leadership and taught middle school language arts before leaving it to write full-time. My books have finaled in Romance Writers of America’s national Golden Heart Contest, PASIC’s Book of Your Heart Contest, and Georgia Romance Writers’ Maggie Contest. My books written as Lynnette Hallberg include Enchanted Evening from Kensington, Moonlight, Motorcycles, and Bad Boys,Chantilly Lace and A Pretty Face, and Night Shadows from The Wild Rose Press, and Just A Little White Lie from Carina Press.

I love books and have closets full of them as well as two well-supplied ereaders. Nothing makes me happier than losing myself in my characters’ worlds. Besides reading and writing, I enjoy traveling. I’ve visited all fifty states with the exception of Alaska and have traveled extensively throughout Canada, Mexico, Europe, Africa, and Central America—always on the lookout for new characters or a new story.

Author Links:

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NEW RELEASE SPOTLIGHT ~ The Only Thing (The Donnigans #3) by Marie Harte

What do you do when a “fake” relationship is so much better than the real thing?

Hope Donnigan is finally getting her life together. She’s working a job she likes, has some amazing friends, and is steering clear of Mr. Wrong. Now if only she could get her mother to understand that. Maybe a hot tattoo artist from the other side town is just the ticket to teach her mom a lesson.

J.T. Webster fell for Hope months ago at his sister’s wedding. So when she propositions him to be her fake boyfriend to get her mother off her back, he’s all in. The only problem is J.T. had no idea their pretend relationship would be better than anything real he’s ever had…

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Excerpt:

“J.T.?”

He froze for a moment, feeling déjà vu. He kept hearing Hope Donnigan’s voice in the weirdest places. Although she had actually been at his dad’s on Friday. He turned to see her standing by the wall-mounted screen to his right. Huh. She was really here.

“Hope?”

She wore open toed sandals showing off dainty, blue painted toenails. Shapely legs disappeared under a knee-length, floral sun dress. A cropped sweater hid her shoulders. She looked like the essence of summer, and he wanted to kneel down in worship. Innocence radiated from her in waves, as if begging him to muss her a little and show her just what heels like those would look like on either side of his head.

He should have felt dirty for wanting to muddy that innocence. Instead, he grew more aroused. Hell.

“Hi.” She smiled at him.

His heart raced. Damn, that dimple slayed him every time.

“He says hi back,” Suke said dryly. “I’m Suke, one of the harder working artists around here. I take it you know J.T.?”

Hope nodded. “Great place. I hadn’t realized it was down here.”

As she and Suke spoke, he watched them interact. Hope didn’t seem to care that Suke had tattoos up and down her arms, piercings in her nose and lip, and spiked black hair in a dare-to-be punk style. Nor did she seem to mind the way Suke was eye-fucking her.

“Hey.” He growled; he minded.

Suke grinned. “I’m leaving for the day. You need me to stick around and lock up? Maybe walk Hope out to her car?”

“Go.”

Suke chuckled and left.

“She’s nice.”

He laughed. “Suke? She busts our balls on a daily basis, but we love her. Now what brings you to the lion’s den?”

She grinned. “Is that what this is? The sign outside said Tull Paint & Body.”

“Yeah, a play on Auto Paint & Body, like a car paint shop. I worked for my dad before I opened the place, and some of him stuck.” Jesus, he was babbling.

“Tull?”

He shrugged, searching for calm. “My dad was a Jethro Tull fan. Sounded cool when I was twenty-five.” He paused, shoving his hands in his pockets so he wouldn’t tuck a stray strand of her golden hair back behind her ear. “What’s up, Hope?”

She flushed, now looking uncomfortable. “Ah, this is kind of awkward. I have a favor to ask.” She didn’t say any more.

She looked so damn adorable. He couldn’t help himself. He had to mess with her. “Okay. So you want a baby without the commitment. I get it. You want to make one right here or in the back room? Do you have some paperwork for me to sign first? You know, about rights for the kid?”

What? No.” She blinked at him. “Have you done that before?”

“Nah, but I can’t think of a more awkward conversation. So now that I know you’re not here to use me and abuse me, what can I do for you?”

“Ah, actually…” Her face turned bright red.

He gaped. “Shit. Really?” He took a step closer. “You want to abuse me? I’m game.”

“J.T.” She blew out a breath. “I have a problem. And I kind of dragged you into it.”

“Color me intrigued.” He led her to the high-backed purple leather chairs by a coffee table, on which a print portfolio of their work lay, along with some other tattoo mags.

“Sorry,” Hope apologized. She crossed her legs to sit demurely in the chair, and his heart threatened to leap from his chest. He wondered if she felt the same sexual chemistry he had since the first time he’d laid eyes on her.

Probably not, since she didn’t seem affected by him. She was shy, gorgeous, and could have any guy she wanted with the crook of her finger. He couldn’t imagine why she needed his help, but whatever. He was game. And truth be told, he felt protective of her. She was a weird extension of family his sister had married into.

“Hope? Just tell me.”

“It’s my mother. She’s such a pain.” Hope glared, and he was taken aback by the fierceness out of a woman he’d never seen be anything but pleasant. “She was on me about dating some rich guy. A doctor this time. Then she was riding me about my job, my lifestyle, being boring. You name it. She jumped on my nerves and ground them to nothing.”

“Ah, sorry.” He still didn’t see what part he had to play in this.

“So I mentioned I was dating someone. A tattoo artist who had baby mommas everywhere and had done time. Have you done time? Because that would be good.”

He blinked. “Huh?’

Like a steamroller, she continued, “I need you to pretend to be my boyfriend the next time I have to go to dinner at Mom and Dad’s. And you need to be awful.”

He didn’t like the tone of this drama. “What? Play the big bad black man to scare your lily-white mom?”

She snorted. “Please. If only it was that easy to scare Linda Donnigan.”

He relaxed, more than glad to know she couldn’t care less about his skin color. “Then what do you need, exactly?”

“My mother loves men and women of all races, genders, and sexualities. But she’s a snob. It’s all about money and success to her. If you’re not dying to be president, you’re nothing.”

“President as in…?”

“The top of whatever your career is, or the actual POTUS. With Linda, it could be either,” she said wryly. “I have no drive to be more than Cam’s assistant right now. I work at my cousin’s investment firm, and I’m basically a glorified secretary. But I’m okay with that.”

“You don’t sound okay.” She sounded frustrated.

“I am. Mostly.” She sighed. “Look, none of this is your fault. I needed someone I thought my mother wouldn’t like.”

“That hurts.” He wasn’t lying.

“It’s not personal. She doesn’t know you, J.T. But she’s not a fan of tattoos at all. And you look tough. So I thought, who do I know who would freak my mother out?”

“Me?”

“Yes.” She smiled. “I just need you to pretend to be my new boyfriend a few times. Then we can ‘break up’ and she’ll never know.”

“I have met your mom, you know. It was brief, at Del’s wedding. She might remember.” He frowned. “Then again, she was drinking that night.”

“She’s good like that.” Hope leaned closer and grabbed his hand.

The feel of her smaller palm against his had sweat break out on his forehead. He stared into her honey gold eyes and felt himself nodding.



BLP REVIEW ~ Tracy

Oh lordy, I’ve been looking forward to JT’s book for a while and, as I suspected, Marie Harte did not disappoint!!!

The Only Thing is the third book in the Donnigans series and we finally get to find out more about Hope, the only girl of the four Donnigan siblings.

Poor Hope, she had so much to live up to when it came to her mothers expectations and her older brothers achievements!!! So much so that when her mother starts interfering in her love life and telling her what kind of guy she needs in her life, she comes up with a fake relationship with JT, who caught her attention a while ago at her cousins wedding….

JT (wait ’til you find out what that stands for!! 🙂 ) is a great guy. For all he’s big, tattooed and looks like a badass, he’s loyal, caring, attentive, supportive and more than happy to help Hope out with her situation – that could well also have something to do with Miss Donnigan having caught his eye and the attraction he has to her.

This pair, even in their ‘fake’ relationship were fab. The fact that the pressure was off gave them the chance to get to know each other and both definitely liked what they found. I loved JT’s determination to move things forward and get Hope to admit what he knew – that they were more than pretend and had a really great thing together.

Even when they were trying not to be, this couple were all in, they were great for each other and I was rooting for them the whole read through. Complete opposites when it came to thoughts on relationships, JT couldn’t see himself even considering marriage, while Hope was all for the white picket fence, husband and kids….. but maybe meeting the right person could change both their ideals?

As ever, I loved that Marie had the crossover of characters from previous series involved in the story – catching up with old favourites is always fun. The book was well written, engaging, funny, sweet and hot. It really pulled at my emotions and was a great way to end the Donnigans series!

I cannot wait to see what is next from one of my favourite authors, whatever it is, I know it’s gonna be great!

My rating, 5*  ❤ ❤ ❤


The Donnigans Series:

A Sure Thing (Book 1)

Just the Thing (Book 2)

The Only Thing (Book 3)

 
AMAZON: US / UK / CA / AU
 
 
 
AMAZON: US / UK / CA / AU
 

About the Author:

MH2cropped

Caffeine addict, boy referee, and romance aficionado, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Marie Harte has over 100 books published with more constantly on the way.

She’s a confessed bibliophile and devotee of action movies. Whether hiking in Central Oregon, biking around town, or hanging at the local tea shop, she’s constantly plotting to give everyone a happily ever after. Visit http://marieharte.com and fall in love.

 

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SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ Caught Up in a Cowboy (Cowboys of Creedence, #1) by Jennie Marts

 

Title: Caught Up in a Cowboy

Series: Cowboys of Creedence, #1
Author: Jennie Marts

Pub Date: May 1, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Western

 

This cowboy plays to win

Rockford James was raised as a tried-and-true cowboy in a town crazy about ice hockey. Rock is as hot on the ice as he is on a horse, and the NHL snapped him up. Now, injuries have permanently benched him. Body and pride wounded, he returns to his hometown ranch to find that a lot has changed. The one thing that hasn’t? His feelings for high school sweetheart and girl-next-door Quinn Rivers.

Quinn had no choice but to get over Rock after he left. Teenaged and heartbroken, she had a rebound one night stand that ended in single motherhood. Now that Rock’s back—and clamoring for a second chance—Quinn will do anything to avoid getting caught up in this oh-so-tempting cowboy…

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Excerpt:

He snuck a glance at her as he drove past the barn. Her wavy hair was pulled back in a ponytail, but wisps of it had come loose and fell across her neck in little curls. She looked good—really good. A thick chunk of regret settled in his gut, and he knew letting her go had been the biggest mistake of his life.

It wasn’t the first time he’d thought it. Images of Quinn haunted his dreams, and he often wondered what it would be like now if only he’d brought her with him instead of leaving her behind. If he had her to wave to in the stands at his games or to come home to at night instead of an empty house. But he’d screwed that up, and he felt the remorse every time he returned to Rivers Gulch.

He’d been young and arrogant—thought he had the world by the tail. Scouts had come sniffing around when he was in high school, inflating his head and his own self-importance. And once he started playing in the big leagues, everything about this small town—including Quinn—had just seemed…well…small. Too small for a big shot like him.

He was just a kid—and an idiot. But by the time he’d realized his mistake and come back for her, it was too late.

Hindsight was a mother.

And so was Quinn.

Easing the car up in front of the house, he took in the festive balloons and streamers tied to the railings along the porch. So much of the house looked the same, the long porch that ran the length of the house, the wooden rocking chairs, and the swing hanging from the end.

They’d spent a lot of time on that swing, his arm around her, talking and laughing, as his foot slowly pushed them back and forth.

She opened the car door, but he put a hand on her arm and offered her one of his most charming smiles. “It’s good to see you, Quinn. You look great. Even in a pirate outfit.”

Her eyes widened and she blinked at him, for once not having a sarcastic reply. He watched her throat shift as she swallowed, and he yearned to reach out and run his fingers along her slender neck.

“Well, thanks for the lift.” She turned away and stepped out of the car.

Pushing open his door, he got out and reached for the bicycle, lifting it out of the back seat before she had a chance. He carried it around and set it on the ground in front of her. “I’d like to meet him. You know, Max. If that’s okay.”

“You would?” Her voice was soft, almost hopeful, but still held a note of suspicion. “Why?”

He ran a hand through his hair and let out a sigh. He’d been rehearsing what he was going to say as they drove up to the ranch, but now his mouth had gone dry. The collar of his cotton T-shirt clung to his neck, and he didn’t know what to do with his hands.

Dang—he hadn’t had sweaty palms since he was in high school. He wiped them on his jeans. He was known for his charm and usually had a way with women, but not this woman. This one had him tongue-tied and nervous as a teenager.

He shoved his hands in his pockets. “Listen Quinn, I know I screwed up. I was young and stupid and a damn fool. And I’m sorrier than I could ever say. But I can’t go back and fix it. All I can do is move forward. I miss this place. I miss having you in my life. I’d like to at least be your friend.”

She opened her mouth, and he steeled himself for her to tell him to go jump in the lake. Or worse. But she didn’t. She looked up at him, her eyes searching his face, as if trying to decide if he was serious or not. “Why now? After all these years?”

He shrugged, his gaze drifting as he stared off at the distant green pastures. He’d let this go on too long, let the hurt fester. It was time to make amends—to at least try. He looked back at her, trying to express his sincerity. “Why not? Isn’t it about time?”

She swallowed again and gave a small nod of her head. A tiny flicker of hope lit in his gut as he waited for her response.

He could practically see her thinking—watch the emotions cross her face in the furrow of her brow and the way she chewed on her bottom lip. Oh man, he loved it when she did that—the way she sucked her bottom lip under her front teeth always did crazy things to his insides.

“Okay. We can try being friends.” She gave him a sidelong glance, the hint of a smile tugging at the corner of her mouth. “On one condition.”

Uh oh. Conditions were never good.



About the Author:

Jennie Marts is the USA Today bestselling author of award-winning books filled with love, laughter, and always a happily ever after. She is living her own happily ever after in the mountains of Colorado with her husband, two dogs, and a parakeet that loves to tweet to the oldies. She’s addicted to Diet Coke, adores Cheetos, and believes you can’t have too many books, shoes, or friends. Find her online at jenniemarts.com.

 

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SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ All’s Fair in Love and Wolf (Silver Town Wolf, #8) by Terry Spear

Title: All’s Fair in Love and Wolf
Series: Silver Town Wolf, #8
Author: Terry Spear

ISBN: 9781492655817
Pub Date: May 1, 2018
Genre: Paranormal

 

The Silver Town wolf pack has your back

Wolf shifter Sarandon Silver’s in trouble with the law, and bounty hunter she-wolf Jenna
St. James is determined to bring him in for trial.

Lucky for Sarandon, the entire Silver Town pack is ready to fight for his innocence.
But until the case is solved, Jenna’s sticking to Sarandon like glue…

Buy Links

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Excerpt

Looking forward to seeing Jake there, Sarandon climbed into the Suburban and took off. This might be even more fun than he had planned.

Sarandon headed into the wilderness, and after a couple of hours, he finally reached the Elk Horn cabin. He parked, got out, and stretched. Taking a deep breath of the pines and Douglas firs, he embraced the peace and quiet, the sound of a river flowing nearby, birds twittering in the trees, and the breeze fluttering the leaves.

Once he’d hauled all his supplies inside, he started a fire in the fireplace and planned to go for a run, something he couldn’t do while acting as a tour guide. Not unless he was taking a wolf group out.

Within minutes, he’d stripped off his clothes and shifted, then pushed through the wolf door. He dashed through the woods, exploring and scent-marking, letting any animal in the area know a wolf was on the prowl and this was his claimed territory.

The sound of a car’s tires crunching on the private gravel road, heading toward the cabin, caught his attention. He stopped and listened from the shelter of the trees and brush. There was nothing out here but wilderness. And the cabins and the land were private property. He could tell by the engine’s purr that the car wasn’t Jake’s or anyone else’s he knew in the pack. The car parked, and the engine shut off in the distance.

If the driver were a hunter, Sarandon didn’t want to be caught in his wolf coat and end up getting shot. Cursing mentally to himself, he waffled about what to do. Hidden in the undergrowth in the woods, he could check out the person leaving the car, or he could run back to the cabin, shift, dress, arm himself with his rifle, and then see who it was and what he or she was up to.

Sarandon opted for returning to the cabin first and ditching his wolf coat. That way, he could tell the trespasser to leave.

When he reached the cabin, he dove through the wolf door, shifted, and rushed to dress. He removed his rifle from the locked gun cabinet and left the cabin, locking it behind him. Listening for any sign of where the person was, Sarandon headed down the road to where he’d heard the car park.

A quarter of a mile from the cabin, he stopped dead in his tracks. A woman was standing off the road, partially hidden in the woods, holding a rifle aimed at him. The way she was holding it, she looked like she knew how to use it. And he’d thought running as a wolf could cause him trouble!

“Hey, I’m just camping up here at one of my family’s cabins. I don’t have any intention of hurting you,” Sarandon said, trying to put the woman at ease, even if she was in the wrong. “This is private property .”

“Carefully, put the rifle down!” she commanded in an authoritative, no-nonsense way.

Well, this was bizarre. She was trespassing and pointing a rifle at him, and yet she was telling him to disarm himself when he belonged here? He considered her attire: black cargo pants, a black windbreaker, and boots. She didn’t look like a half-crazed criminal or a hunter either. He wasn’t afraid of her; he’d be much warier of a man holding a rifle on him than a woman. He just figured he’d spooked her.

“All right. All right. You don’t have to be afraid of me.” Being the nice wolf he was, Sarandon set his rifle on the ground, figuring the woman was going hiking, albeit on private property, and didn’t know privately owned cabins were located here, though signs were posted in the area. But the fact that she was carrying a rifle made him suspect something else might be going on. “I run photo-op tours, hiking, mountain climbing, and white-water rafting guided tours, one-on-one tours, and group tours.” He thought if he told her what he did, she would realize he was employed, not some mountain man living out here in the wilderness alone, and that his occupation meant he was one of the good guys who liked working with people. “Whatever customers might be interested in,” he continued.

She was someone he was interested in. If she was a wolf and would put the weapon down. Something about her straightforward and confrontational attitude appealed. He swore it was the wolf in him.

“Sarandon Silver?” she asked, her brow arched.

Learning that she knew his name surprised him. If she knew who he was, why was she pointing the rifle at him? Then he wondered if this had something to do with his brothers. Maybe they’d sent her as a plant, a way to get him to meet a new she-wolf, believing the standard boy-meets-girl routine wouldn’t cut it with him. Especially since he’d said he was trying to come up with an idea for a new adventure.

“Yeah, I’m Sarandon Silver. Do you want to tell me how you know me and why you’re still pointing a weapon at me?” She had to be his brothers’ idea, but he wondered where she was taking this.

If this was for real, he didn’t recall anything he’d done that would have aggravated anyone to the extent that she’d pull a weapon on him. He hadn’t taken a mate and pissed off her family. He hadn’t lost anyone on one of his excursions. His dad was the only one who’d ever committed any crimes in the family, and he’d paid for his sins with his life.

“Come this way, nice and slow,” she said, her voice firm and resolved.

He frowned at her. She sounded like a cop. He looked her over again, but her clothes didn’t indicate that. He couldn’t see what was underneath the jacket, though from the slight bulk underneath the material, it looked like she might have a sidearm holstered there. She hadn’t said she was a cop though. Plus, if she were, she wasn’t in her own jurisdiction. Her car was a silver Ford Expedition, with no indication it was a cop’s vehicle.

She was a beautiful brunette, her hair cut short and bouncy, her eyes a crystal-clear blue. If his brothers—and maybe his cousins—had put her up to this… Well, he didn’t want to appear as though he couldn’t take a joke. She’d share with them how growly he’d been, and they’d all have a good laugh over it—at his expense.

“Am I under arrest?” he asked with good humor, smiling a little. He couldn’t help it. He couldn’t take this seriously.


About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over sixty paranormal romances. In 2008, Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world. She lives in Spring, Texas where she raises two Havanese puppies.

 

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SPOTLIGHT ~ Running the Risk by Lea Griffith

 

BLURB:

Survival is crucial.

Trust is optional.

Love is unstoppable.

Jude Dagan’s life as he knew it ended a year ago. On a mission gone wrong, he was forced to watch as Ella Banning, the only woman he’s ever loved, was killed. Or so he thought.

Jude wasn’t the only one who lost something on the day Ella was presumed dead. She sacrificed Endgame Ops, the love of her life, and parts of herself she can never get back. Now she’s determined to take down the world’s most dangerous terrorist—even if it means working for him.

When Jude and Ella are reunited, they’ll battle the lies Ella has been forced to tell…and struggle to save a love that knows no bounds.

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EXCERPT:

Jude adjusted his scope’s sight and settled down in the slight depression between two trees. Pine straw, dying leaves and branches covered him. He’d made the blind to blend into the landscape seamlessly. The sun was behind him now, its heat nothing more than a fading promise. The wind had picked up an hour ago, and he allowed its bitter cold to seep into his soul. It was soothing to a degree, though Jude doubted anything could ever completely cool his rage. He’d been here for two days, following intel that would hopefully lead him to…her. He’d stopped even thinking her name months ago. The sound of it reverberating through his mind caused unbearable pain that spread from his heart through every limb. It was debilitating, that pain. And unending. Instead, he remembered her face, the way her body had once moved beneath him, and the promises she’d made that had inevitably been nothing more than lies.

Movement in the compound below had him tightening his grip on his rifle. He’d been trained to take down targets a mile away, but today was simply reconnaissance. When he’d seen her in Beirut six weeks ago, after a year of believing her dead and gone, his mind had denied what his heart had immediately recognized.

El—her.

Then she’d disappeared in the smoke and confusion, and he’d had no choice but to leave her again.

In the hell that was Lebanon.

He tightened his grip on his weapon, tamping down his dangerous emotions. Below him, four white Range Rovers pulled up to the concrete warehouse that had once been a chemical engineering facility. Unsubstantiated rumors had it that the facility’s purpose was to conceal Horace Dresden’s biochemical weapons stash. Whatever the case, those rumors had hit Jude’s ears and his skin had prickled.

Endgame’s mission for two years had been the elimination of Horace Dresden. For Jude, the mission had morphed. Oh, he wanted Dresden, but his motivation resided in the fact that if he could find that murdering son of a bitch he’d find, her.

The right-side driver’s door of the lead Rover opened, and a dainty foot encased in a nude stiletto heel lowered to the ground. The leg attached to the foot had his gut clenching. He’d tasted the arc of that calf, tongued the indention of that knee, and had his hands all over that thigh.

She stepped out of the Rover completely, and his gut clenched then relaxed. It was a reaction he’d only had with her. Jude was a warrior, a soldier. He’d spent most of his adult life training, fighting and killing. He was damn good at what he did. Had never even realized something was missing from his life until she’d stepped into his sphere and taken him over.

The wind caught her overcoat and tossed the ivory folds, allowing him a glimpse of a body that was thinner than he remembered but no less captivating. Through the scope, his gaze trailed upward over her hips and then higher across her breasts and up along the slope of her collarbone. Her skin was the same color as her coat but softer, glowing. The flavor of that skin danced like a phantom over his tongue.

The trees above him bowed to the wind, and in his spot on the ridge above the compound, His nostrils flared, a stallion scenting its mare. He swore he could taste her on the breeze. She moved to shut the door and, in an instant, froze.

She slowly lifted her hand and removed the dark sunglasses that hid the frost of her gaze from him. The scar at her temple mocked him. It was the only mark on the otherwise unblemished face that stalked his dreams. And then she angled her head toward his location.

His heart locked in his chest. No way she had any idea he was here. He hadn’t even told King where he was headed—had kept the information about Dresden’s supposed compound from the Piper, King, and his teammates. This was what he’d been reduced to. Spying on a woman who’d betrayed him…betrayed them. Desperate for a glimpse of her. Desperate to make her pay.

The wind settled at that moment, but still she gazed up toward him. The man who’d gotten out of the Rover on the other side must have called her name, because she glanced at him and her lips moved before she began walking toward the building. Jude was too far away to hear her words.

Six men got out of each of the remaining Rovers, each carrying a small metal briefcase. Jude would bet his left nut they were here to obtain some of Dresden’s horde of biochemicals.

He trained his gaze on her again, watching as her long legs ate up the distance between the Rover and the building, and for a crazy second, Jude remembered her as she’d been the night before his world had been blown to hell. He saw her walking on their beach in North Carolina, the wind whipping her long ebony hair, the waves playing havoc around her delicate ankles. He saw her head turn as a grin broke across her face. He saw the flush of their recent lovemaking on her body.

A hawk screamed in the distance, and Jude was jerked to the present. Instead of seeing his woman through the sight of the scope, he saw her. A stranger. A traitor.

Jude’s sight remained locked on her, his finger caressing the trigger as he let the anger flow through him. He’d heard the whispers—maybe she was a double agent. Maybe she wasn’t the traitor he knew her to be. Maybe she was both and neither.

Maybe he hadn’t given everything he was to a ghost.

He needed the truth, and he’d resolved that he’d have to be cold and merciless in finding it. She’d led them on this path. She could damn well walk it with him.

The man entered the building, but before she stepped in behind him, she once again turned her gaze to Jude’s location.

She couldn’t see him, but for Jude, it didn’t matter. She knew he was there. He knew she knew. She raised both hands, holding up six fingers. It was so quick Jude wondered if his mind was playing tricks on him as his heart threatened to burst from his chest. Had it been supplication or warning? He didn’t know—but the sadness that passed like a cloud over the contours of her face in that moment had him swearing.

Then she lowered her hands as the soft curves of her mouth lifted in a travesty of a smile.

Jude cursed again, the wind taking the foul word and tossing it to and fro. As she moved out of his sight, his gut clenched again. King had warned Jude that all was not as it seemed, to give him time to figure it all out.

Jude hadn’t been inclined to give himself that time. Until this moment.

Because there’d been one other emotion on her face just now that ripped a hole right through Jude’s shriveled heart. He’d seen it many times over the course of their year together but had despaired he’d ever see it again. It had been the truest of all the emotions she’d ever displayed with him.

It was the one thing that stayed his trigger finger. It was the only thing that could save her.

Love.



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Lea Griffith began sneaking to read her mother’s romance novels at a young age. She cut her teeth on the greats: McNaught, Woodiwiss, and Garwood. A firm believer that love makes the world go round, she still consumes every romance book she can put her hands on, but now she writes her own. 
Lea lives with her husband and three teenage daughters in rural Georgia. Two dogs, a cat, and a beta fish named Coddy George complete a family that is always in motion. When not working at the EDJ, she’s usually at her keyboard, using every spare second to write. Science fiction, paranormal and contemporary romance, oh my! Nothing is off-limits when it comes to her writing. 

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SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ Play for Keeps (Love Games, #2) by Maggie Wells

Title: Play for Keeps
Series: Love Games, #2
Author: Maggie Wells

Pub Date: April 3, 2018
Genre: Contemporary

 

Mixing business and pleasure is a dangerous game…

Tyrell Ransom, the new men’s basketball coach, is ready to whip his team into shape and start winning some games. But when compromising photos of his soon-to-be-ex-wife with one of his players go viral, everything comes crashing down. With reporters thick on the ground, Ty and his team need some serious damage control—now.

When public relations guru Millie Jenkins arrives in her leopard-print cape to save the day, things really heat up… Soon they’re going to have to work double time to keep their white-hot chemistry out of the headlines.

 

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Excerpt

Clean-shaven, minty fresh, and unable to stand waiting a second longer, he snatched up the phone and padded into the condo’s master bedroom. The furnishings were comfortable if not a bit generic. The bed was a standard king, which meant he slept diagonally most nights, but the pillows were firm and plentiful. Hitting the recall button with his thumb, he propped a couple against the headboard, then dropped onto the bed. The knot at his waist loosened a bit but held the ends of the towel together enough to keep him decent.

“Hi, Ty.”

The throaty rasp of her greeting did things to him. Stirred thoughts and urges he’d bank for later. For now, he had to set the jumble aside and form coherent sentences. “Hey, sorry I missed your call.”

His lack of explanation might have been a bit of payback. Millie never gave excuses for why she would need to call him back or accounted for her time in any way, so he followed her lead. He didn’t want her thinking he counted down the hours until he could talk to her again. Even if he did.

Playing by the unwritten conversational rules, he opened with an inane yet remarkably telling question. “How was your day?”

She sighed. “Boring. I hate summer session. Campus is like a ghost town in the afternoons. Kate has banned me from her office because I told her I was tempted to release the bikini picture from her honeymoon. I have no idea why she’s being such a pill. If I were built like her, I’d dance a bikini-clad flamenco on top of every swimsuit edition in the athletic department’s secret archive.”

Ty wasn’t sure how he was supposed to respond, so he stretched his legs out in front of him, crossed one ankle over the other, and started in what seemed like the safest place. “Secret archive?”

She guffawed. “Don’t play innocent. I know what’s in the file cabinet at the back of the bullpen.”

He smiled, the image of Millie rifling through the battered metal drawers in search of contraband forming in his mind’s eye. She wasn’t wrong. When the university’s human resources director cracked down on “potentially offensive” materials displayed in the workplace, the warren of cubicles housing the coaching assistants was hardest hit. All calendars, posters, and, yes, a nearly exhaustive collection of Sports Illustrated swimsuit editions were deemed too dangerous for public display. But instead of taking the stuff home, some smarty-pants locked all the loot in a filing cabinet no one bothered to use once departmental records became computerized. A limited number of duplicate keys were made, and being awarded one had become a departmental rite of passage.

At least now Ty had a pretty good idea who’d planted a copy of Burt Reynolds’s Cosmopolitan centerfold in the mix.

“Are you the one who keeps slipping issues of GQ and Esquire in?”

“Not me,” she said in a singsong voice. “But I can tell you people really are crazy about a sharp-dressed fella.”

“Sadly, I don’t think they’re having any impact on Mack or Beau’s wardrobe choices,” he said gravely.

Mack and Beau were the elder statesmen of the Warrior coaching staff. They were known for their love of polyester shorts, snow-white athletic shoes, and, in Beau’s case, striped tube socks color coordinated with whichever polo-collared shirt his wife of over forty years had pressed for him. They were also two of the handful of coaches who’d willingly relinquished their keys to the cabinet. As far as Ty knew, the head coaches declined their copies. He knew far better ways to get shit-canned in professional coaching than ogling two-dimensional versions of scantily clad women. The three-dimensional ones caused enough trouble.

“I’d run away with Mr. Beau if he’d ditch that hussy.”

“Watch yourself. She may look all sweet and charming, but I’m pretty sure Mrs. Beau would claw your eyes out if you put the moves on her man.”

Millie heaved a heavy sigh. “No use. I can’t get the guy to look twice at me anyhow.”

“I have fifty that says he’s looked more than twice.”

Her delighted laugh made the prospect of coughing up fifty bucks on a bet he couldn’t prove one way or another totally worthwhile. “You’re so good for my ego.”


About the Author 

By day, Maggie Wells is buried in spreadsheets. At night she pens tales of people tangling up the sheets. The product of a charming rogue and a shameless flirt, you only have to scratch the surface of this mild-mannered married lady to find a naughty streak a mile wide. She has a passion for college football, processed cheese foods, and happy endings. Not necessarily in that order. She lives in Arkansas.

 

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SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ X-Ops Exposed (X-Ops, #8) by Paige Tyler

Title: X-Ops Exposed
Series: X-Ops, #8
Author: Paige Tyler

 

Pub Date: April 3, 2018
Genre: Paranormal Romantic Suspense

 

HE LEFT TO KEEP HER SAFE

Believing he’s too dangerous to be among people, feline hybrid Tanner Howland retreats deep into the forests of Washington State—with no choice but to leave behind the woman who’s captured his heart. What he doesn’t know is that she followed him…

 

SHE WOULDN’T STAY BEHIND

Heartbroken and determined, Dr. Zarina Sokolov tracks Tanner into the wild. Her presence unleashes Tanner’s protective instinct—big time. Locals have been disappearing and he is desperate for Zarina to leave. As the kidnappings escalate, Tanner must embrace the dangerous instincts he fears so much. But with Zarina at his side, he’ll have to learn to control his animal impulses, or lose himself—and the woman he loves—to the beast within.

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X-OPS Exposed
Paige Tyler

Excerpt 1

Knowing she wasn’t going to get away, Zarina slid to a stop and spun around, ready to shout at the beast that wanted to kill her. She’d seen Tanner let out a roar that could paralyze almost anything crazy enough to attack him, so perhaps she could do the same thing.

But her cry of defiance died in her throat as she came face-to-face with a gigantic grizzly bear. The beast reared up on its hind legs, towering over her for one heart-stopping moment before dropping to all fours and roaring at her so loud, her bones felt turned to jelly.

She vaguely remembered the store clerk in town trying to sell her a can of bear repellent. If she wasn’t so terrified, she’d laugh at the idea. What the heck would a can of pepper spray do to something this big?

The bear took a step in her direction with another roar, showing off fangs large enough to bite right through her.

For a split second, Zarina considered running again, but it would be pointless. She’d never outrun a bear.

Rabbits get eaten.

So instead, she screamed as long and loud as she could.

The grizzly looked shocked for a moment, but instead of scaring the animal off like she’d hoped, all it did was seem to make him mad. Head low, the bear started toward her.

She was going to die.

But suddenly, the bear stopped, a look of what could only be confusion on its face as it focused on something behind her. A second later, a roar ripped through the night that shook the ground. She jerked her head around, almost collapsing in relief when she saw Tanner standing there in the dark, dressed in jeans and a T-shirt, his eyes glowing vivid red, fangs bared as he let out a roar that sounded exactly like that of a lion. Which made sense, because those were the DNA strands blended with his own.

Zarina stood transfixed. Tanner’s fangs were longer and looked more terrifying than the bear’s.

The rage and anger on his face must have been enough to scare the grizzly, because the huge animal gave one more halfhearted chuff in Tanner’s direction, then turned and scurried back into the pitch-dark forest.

To her right, she caught movement. Crap, Tanner was going after the bear. Not because he wanted to hurt the animal, but because by running, the grizzly had become the prey, and Tanner’s lion half simply couldn’t stop itself from hunting the animal down now that the rage had taken over.

“Tanner,” she said softly. “Let the bear go.”

He stopped like he’d hit a brick wall, then stood there, unmoving, for what felt like forever, facing away from her and staring off into the darkness in the direction the bear had run. Not that it was probably all that dark for Tanner. With his animal-enhanced eyesight, he could probably see the grizzly’s big, fuzzy rump bouncing off into the woods. And if his eyes lost the creature, then his keen sense of smell would fill in the details. Which was a good thing, since she’d have probably been a bear treat if it hadn’t been for that nose of his.

After what seemed like an eternity, Tanner turned and looked at her. His fangs and glowing red eyes were gone now, replaced by a mesmerizing blue gaze and a ruggedly handsome face that had made her heart almost stop beating the first time she’d seen it. He had a bit more dark-blond scruff along his jaw and chin now. Actually, a lot more. Maybe it was because she’d grown up in a cold-weather environment where the opposite sex went all caveman in an attempt to stay warm, but she wasn’t usually a fan of facial hair. On Tanner, though, it looked incredibly scrumptious.

His T-shirt clung tightly to his chest and shoulders, showing off all the muscles he had upstairs, while his jeans fought to contain thighs that looked poised to tear their way out at any moment. Had he actually gotten more muscular since he’d been out there?

Zarina almost ran to him right then so she could throw her arms around him and hold him tight for the rest of the night. But she didn’t, because she knew he wouldn’t be ready for that. Not after she’d showed up in the forest out of the blue and almost gotten eaten by a bear.

But damn, it was hard.

Tanner looked better now than when he’d been living in the dorms at the DCO complex. He had been put up there since the agency’s covert agents had found him out here all that time ago. Even the stress lines that had been etched into his features had completely faded. It almost made her sorry she’d come out here to disturb the serenity he seemed to have found. But she couldn’t stay away, not with the way she felt about him. And especially not when she could finally help him.

“What are you doing here, Zarina?” he asked bluntly.

So much for him sweeping her into his arms and saying he was happy to see her. Clearly, he wasn’t. She tried not to let that hurt too much.

“I’m here to help you,” she said, equally blunt.

She’d learned a long time ago that dancing around a subject wasn’t the way Tanner did things. It wasn’t the way she did, either, so that was okay. She didn’t bother mentioning that his disappearance had caused her more sleepless nights than she could count and had nearly driven her insane with worry. That would have been emotional blackmail, and she wasn’t going to do that to him.

His jaw flexed. “I don’t need any help. I’m doing a good job of controlling my hybrid impulses all on my own.”

She looked pointedly in the direction the grizzly had run. “It doesn’t seem like it to me.”

Tanner flinched, and she immediately regretted her choice of words. Dammit, she was out here to help him, not push him further away.

“I haven’t lost control in the two months I’ve been out here,” he said through clenched teeth. “Not until you decided to do something stupid like wander through the middle of a grizzly’s territory by yourself.”

Zarina wanted to point out that she hadn’t planned to be out here this late and that there was no way she could have known she was in a bear’s territory. But she bit her tongue and focused on trying to defuse the situation.

“I’m sorry I made you lose control again,” she said. “But I’m here to make sure it doesn’t happen again…ever.”

She waited, expecting Tanner to ask her what she meant by that, but he didn’t. Instead, he stood there regarding her and looking way better than any man should considering he’d been camping in the woods for two months. She had met plenty of guys who couldn’t pull off his level of masculine perfection after primping in front of a mirror for an hour. That was one of the other things she’d learned about Tanner. He didn’t have to work hard at being so amazing. It came naturally to him.

After another minute of silence, Zarina accepted that if they were going to talk, she was the one who would have to get the conversation started. “I finished the hybrid drug antiserum that will return your DNA back to what it was before Stutmeir’s doctors experimented on you. You can be a normal human again.”

She waited for some reaction—relief, doubt, elation. Something. But Tanner looked as interested as if she’d told him it might rain tomorrow.

“I’ll never be normal again,” he finally said quietly.

“Yes, you will.” She stepped closer, anguish coursing through her when he immediately took a step back. “I worked on the antidote every minute since you left. It will work. It will keep the beast from ever slipping out again.”

“I don’t want it, dammit!” he shouted, making her jump. He cursed and ran his hand through his hair. “I’m sorry,” he said, his voice softer. “For yelling at you. And for making you come all the way out here and hiking halfway across the Wenatchee Forest to find me. But I don’t want the antidote. Just go home, okay? Leave me out here where I can’t hurt anyone.”

Zarina’s heart tore in two at the pain in his eyes. She had no idea why he was turning down her offer, but she wasn’t leaving without him.

“I’m not going home,” she said, standing her ground and leveling her gaze at him.

Having this conversation would have been a lot easier without holding a flashlight. Then she could have folded her arms to emphasize her point.

“Then you’d better have a lot of books on that e-reader of yours, because you’re going to get bored damn fast waiting for me at whatever hotel you’re staying in.”

“I’m not going to a hotel,” she told him. “I’m staying out here.”

Red flared in his eyes but faded just as quickly. “Like hell you are.”

“I’m not leaving,” she said firmly. “You can run off into the woods—we both know I can’t keep up with you—but I still won’t leave. I’ll keep walking all over the forest looking for you.”

His eyes flickered red again, and he muttered something under his breath she couldn’t catch. “You irritate me like no one else on the planet, do you know that?”

“Yes,” she replied, even though it was a probably a rhetorical question. “So, which way to your camp?”

Excerpt 2

Sighing, Tanner closed his eyes and leaned his head back against the wall of the cabin again. Zarina didn’t say anything else, not wanting to interrupt him if he was silently saying a prayer of thanks. She frowned a little, realizing she didn’t know whether he was religious or not. Then again, there was a lot about Tanner she didn’t know. He kept a lot of stuff to himself. She wished he didn’t do that. Maybe she could make his life better if she knew more about him. Which, strangely enough, was part of the reason she was so attracted to him. That stoic, stubborn nature of his was alluring—when it wasn’t driving her crazy.

Tanner’s eyes abruptly snapped open, and he pushed away from the wall, completely alert. A moment later, Zarina heard the sound of footsteps approaching the cabin. She turned to see Burt, along with another man and a dark-haired teenage girl who was about eighteen or nineteen. The man was probably the same age as Burt, but his face was more lined and his eyes more weary.

It wasn’t until the trio stopped in front of them that Zarina caught sight of the half-healed scar along one side of the girl’s neck. Four parallel wounds, the two in the middle deeper than the ones on either side. It took Zarina only half a second to recognize those scars had come from a shifter—or a hybrid.

Zarina shot a quick look Tanner’s way, telling herself it wasn’t possible. She searched his face for some indication he was the one who’d hurt the girl, but he merely returned her gaze.

“Zarina, you know Burt already,” Tanner said. “This is Chad and his daughter, Lillie.”

Burt gave Zarina a nod while Chad and Lillie took turns shaking her hand. Zarina should have realized the girl was the man’s daughter as soon as she saw them together. They had the same gray eyes, aquiline nose, and arching brows.

“I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you getting here so fast, Tanner,” Chad said. “And for bringing your friend.” He looked at Zarina. “I don’t know what we would have done without her, except maybe lose Lorraine. How is she?”

Zarina opened her mouth to point out that there would have been a lot less drama if they’d simply taken the woman to a hospital like normal people, but the sight of three huge, fierce-looking men coming toward them made her forget what she’d been about to say.

It wasn’t just the blatant anger on the men’s faces that stunned her speechless. It was the fact that she recognized them. But even as she stood there with her mouth hanging open, she told herself she had to be wrong. There was no way they could possibly be the men she thought they were, because the last time she’d seen them, Stutmeir’s goons had been dragging their dead bodies out of an abandoned ski lodge not more than fifteen miles from here.

“What the hell is she doing here?” one of the men snarled, showing off inch-long fangs to go along with his suddenly flaming red eyes. Dark-haired with a broad nose and full lips, he was nearly as tall as Tanner. “She’s one of those damn doctors who tortured us. I’d know her scent anywhere.”

Zarina was still trying to wrap her mind around the fact that the hybrids were alive when the one who’d spoken strode toward her, his clawed hands itching to do damage. She barely had enough time to get out of the way before Tanner stepped in front of her and stiff-armed the guy in the chest.

“Back off, Spencer,” Tanner growled, his tone more menacing than Zarina had ever heard it. He pinned the other two hybrids with a glare. One had blond hair and a stocky build while the other was a tall, muscular dark-skinned man. “Peter and Malcolm, that goes for you too.”

That warning only got them more riled up. Zarina watched in alarm as Peter and Malcolm snarled and bared their fangs. Clearly, they were ready to go through him to get to her.

Tanner didn’t give them a chance. He dropped his hands to his sides, his claws extending to their full length so fast that blood splattered on the wooden planks of the porch. Then he bared his fangs at the men and roared so loud, people five miles away probably heard it.

Zarina reached out to grab his arm, desperate to stop the fight before it started, but Tanner slipped left and caught the blond-haired Peter in midjump. Latching onto the man’s shoulders, Tanner spun him around and sent him crashing into one of the pillars supporting the porch. Peter slammed into it with an audible crunch. Something told Zarina the sound wasn’t entirely from the wood breaking.

Peter hadn’t even tumbled to the ground before Tanner was moving again. He intercepted Malcolm just as the man lashed out at Zarina’s face with his claws. Their sharp points missed her by mere inches, and she gasped as Tanner ran headlong into her attacker, shoving him away from her.

Tanner and Malcolm went down in a pile, quickly becoming a rolling ball of muscles, snarls, growls, and flashing claws. A split second later, Spencer joined the fray.

Crap. This was going to get so much worse.

Heart pounding, Zarina hurried forward to intervene, but an arm wrapped around her waist, jerking her to a stop before she’d gone more than a few feet. She glanced over her shoulder to see Burt holding onto her. A few feet away, Chad was doing the same to his daughter. All around the camp, people poked their heads out of doors and windows, a few of them venturing out of their cabins to see what the commotion was about.

“You can’t get between them, not while they’re like this,” Burt insisted. “You do, and you’re the one who’s going to get hurt.”

Zarina knew Burt was right, but that didn’t keep her from fighting against his grip anyway. Tanner was in danger. That was all she cared about.

But Burt refused to let her go, so she was forced to watch as Peter joined Spencer and Malcolm. The three hybrids looked barely human now, their eyes completely lost in a glow of red and fangs flashing.

Tanner might be bigger than all three of them and a former Army Ranger to boot, but there was no way he could fight that many out-of-control hybrids all at once. He was so focused on Spencer and Malcolm that he never saw Peter coming at his back. Malcolm gripped Tanner’s shoulder, digging his claws in deep and flipping Tanner over. Peter immediately lunged forward and sank his fangs into Tanner’s free arm, pinning it to the ground and holding him tight. That’s when Spencer leaned in close and lifted his hand, his claws aimed at Tanner’s exposed neck.

Zarina’s heart seized in her chest. Oh, God. Spencer was going to kill him.


 About the Author:

Paige Tyler is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of sexy, romantic fiction. Paige writes books about hunky alpha males and the kick-butt heroines they fall in love with. She lives with her very own military hero (a.k.a. her husband) and their adorable dog on the beautiful Florida coast.

 

Find Paige Online:

Website: 

Facebook: 

Twitter: 

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Goodreads:

SOME FUN FACTS ABOUT PAIGE…

She loves anything and everything Disney related, and has pictures with every Disney character to prove it.

She also loves anything and everything Monster High related, and has the books, movies and dolls to prove it.

Her favorite Disney characters are Tigger, Pooh, Goofy and Tinkerbell.

Her favorite Monster High characters are ALL of them!

She’s addicted to dark chocolate, animated movies, Pinterest and Sephora.

She and her hubby (who is her writing partner) go to their favorite restaurant—P.F. Chang’s—to plot all of their books.

She’ll tell you she’s not exactly the outdoor type, but yet she loves the beach.

She studied ballet for twelve years.

She went to art school, and yes, figure drawing was her favorite class (probably because all the nude models were male!)

She collects Monster High Dolls, Barbie Dolls, Disney Dolls, Squishables, any and all plush animals and Jim Shore Disney.

She’s just as likely to have Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Pitbull, Ke$ha, Black Eyed Peas and LMFAO on her iPod as she is Billy Idol, Foreigner, The Beatles, and Golden Earring (if you can dance to it, it’s probably on there!)

MUST-SEE TV:

​Current Shows –
Supernatural (she has a huge thing for Sam and Dean!)
Teen Wolf
Major Crimes
The Big Bang Theory
Food Network Star
Worst Cooks in America
SyFy’s Face Off

Shows That Should Still Be On –
Buffy the Vampire SlayerAngel (no other vamp comes close!)
Charmed
Stargate Atlantis
 (one word – Ronan!)

Kim Possible
Bones 
(she has a thing for Booth, too!)

Psych

On Her Bookshelf:
J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series
Lisi Harrison’s Monster High Series 

Suzanne Brockmann’s Troubleshooters Series
Mary Frame’s Imperfect Series
Tracie Puckett’s Just a Little Series 

Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight Series
Kelley Armstrong’s Otherworld Series
Johanna Lindsey’s Book (all of them!)

Kat Martin’s Hot Rain and Nothing But Velvet
Shelley Thacker’s Into the Sunset

FAVORITE MOVIES:

Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Disney’s The Little Mermaid
Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (the animated version)
Disney’s Frozen
Storks
Secret Life of Pets
Hidalgo
Avatar
Thor
The Guardians of the Galaxy movies

Marvel’s The Avengers (Mostly because Thor is in it!)
The new Star Trek movies (the reboot rocks!)

GUYS SHE’S GOT A THING FOR
​(BESIDES HER HUBBY, OF COURSE, BUT THAT’S OBVIOUS!)

​Viggo Mortensen
David Boreanaz
Jensen Ackles
Jared Padelecki
Jason Momoa
Chris Hemsworth
Tyler Hoechlin



 

SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ Fearless in Texas (Texas Rodeo #4) by Kari Lynn Dell

 
Title: Fearless in Texas

Series: Texas Rodeo #4

Author: Kari Lynn Dell


Pub Date: April 3, 2018

ISBN: 9781492658115

 

He’d step in front of a bull to save a life

But even he’s no match for a girl this Texas tough

Rodeo bullfighter Wyatt Darrington’s got it all figured out. The perfect car, the perfect job, the perfect looks—the perfect lie. He may be on the fast track to the Hall of Fame, but he knows he’ll always be an outsider to people like Melanie Brookman. Texas-born and bred, with the arena in her blood, Melanie’s come to see Wyatt as her personal enemy, and that suits him just fine—this way, she’ll never realize the truth.

He’s been crazy in love with her for years.

Melanie’s always been a fighter. Fiercely independent and tough as nails, she’s stood up to everything that got in her way—including Wyatt. But now her infamous temper’s got her on the ropes, and there’s nowhere left to run but toward the man she swore she’d never trust…and this time, there’s no denying just how hot he makes her burn.

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What I Love about Rodeo

There are so many things I love about rodeo that I could—and have—filled several books (aka the Texas Rodeo series). A million tiny details like the scent of wood shavings in a horse stall, the indescribable joy of a perfectly thrown loop, or the way a belt and buckle sets off a nice pair of hips. Lately, though, I’ve come to appreciate a facet of rodeo and life on the ranch that I’ve always taken for granted: rodeo makes women stronger.

Unlike other parts of our society, in rodeo and ranching, strength is a highly prized trait in a woman—both physical and mental. From the time we are old enough to be hoisted onto a pony to trot around the arena, we are praised for being ambitious, competitive, aggressive and independent. We are valued as much for what our bodies can accomplish as we are for our appearance. I might’ve started out by catching my husband’s eye, but I captured his heart the first time he saw me sort cows.

The smart, capable, take-no-crap women of the Texas Rodeo books are products of my environment, and none more so than Melanie Brookman of Fearless in Texas. May every reader who ventures into our world steal a page from her book and leave with a little more cowgirl in their blood—and their attitude.




EXCERPT

Wyatt braced a hand on the front door of the Bull Dancer Saloon, blocking Melanie. “You can’t go back in there.”

She looked at his arm as if debating whether she should bite it or snap it in half. “You think you can stop me?”

“Yes.” He jerked a thumb toward the door and quoted the flyspecked sign posted inside. “I am the proprietor, and we reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.”

Hell. That wasn’t what he’d meant to say, but the sparks that were flying off of her were burying themselves under his skin, kindling fires that threatened to reduce all of his good intentions to ashes. Her mouth dropped open, and he braced himself for some truly spectacular swearing. Instead, she snapped it shut, whirled around, and strode away, her shiny red heels clicking angrily on the empty street.

“Melanie…wait! Could we just talk—”

Her answer was a stiff middle finger shot straight in the air. He took a couple of steps in pursuit, but his ankle made it clear that anything above a sedate stroll was a bad idea, not that he was sure what he’d do if he caught her. Attempting to stop her when she was like this would be like tackling a mountain lion, but if she intended to go to one of the other bars, she was headed the wrong direction.

“Where are you going?”

“To the bridge. It’ll have to do, since I assume you’ll follow me and there’s not a cliff handy.”

He’d already taken several more steps, but he stopped. “The rail is too high.”

“Then I’ll knock you over the head with a rock and roll you off the dike.”

She wouldn’t. Would she? “If you’re going to commit assault and attempted murder, you’ll need your keys to make your getaway.”

She stopped dead and spun around. He held up the keys in one hand and the purse in the other.

She swore and started back toward him. “Don’t think I won’t kick you square in the nuts and stomp on your fingers when you fall.”

“Not a doubt in my mind.” He unlocked the door that led up to her apartment, yanked it open, and threw both the keys and the purse to the top of the stairs before she could reach him. Then he stepped back, feet braced, ready to dodge or deflect any blow aimed at his groin. If Melanie had said it, she was seriously considering it.

She went for the door instead, but paused with her hand on the knob. “If I go in after them, you won’t let me out.”

“Nope.” Although it would take all his strength to hold the door shut if she was determined to push it open, and there was the fire escape…

Her hand dropped, and she turned on him. If it were possible for a stare to be literally cutting, his guts would’ve fallen out onto the street. “What…the hell…is your problem?”

“You.” He gestured toward her painted face, her dress, those damn red shoes. “I know what all of that means, but you’re wrong. And if you would just let me explain—”

“Yes!” She threw her hands in the air like a Baptist preacher. “Please, oh wise and knowing male, tell me how I’m supposed to feel. Better yet, explain why it is that you could leave this place with any of those women you’ve never met before and you get high fives, but if I do the same, I’m an embarrassment to your shitty little bar.”

Despite his vow to remain calm, his temper began to stir. “I did not say—”

“You don’t have to. I grew up in the goddamn Bible Belt. I’ve heard it all my life.” The bitterness in her voice ran generations deep. “Well, sorry, but not sorry. I’m done trying to please anyone but myself. I’ll sleep with who I want, when I want, and y’all can just deal with it.”

Not likely. Wyatt’s anger boiled up, shooting past the red line and straight into fury. Yes, her rage was justified, but she did not get to lump him in with bastards like Michael and her former boss. All he’d ever wanted, from damn near the first moment they’d spoken on the phone, was Melanie, but it was as if the entire universe had conspired against him, and he was so damn tired of fighting this bone-deep need…

He took a step toward her. Then another. She didn’t budge, but her eyes flicked toward the apartment door as if reconsidering her choices.

He leaned in close, his breath fanning her cheek, his voice low and lethal even to his own ears. “Is that what you want? Just someone with a pulse you can use up and toss out when you’re done?”

He heard her swallow, but she didn’t flinch. “Why shouldn’t I? Men have been doing it forever.”

“Yes, we have.”

He gathered a fistful of her hair and wound the warm silk around and around his hand until his knuckles were pressed to the nape of her neck. Her breath caught at the electric press of skin against skin, and her eyes went even darker. The line he’d held for so long had been crossed. He was beyond stopping—unless she made him.

“As long as you’re determined to do something you’ll hate yourself for in the morning, it might as well be with me.” And then he kissed her.

And instead of shoving him away, Melanie clenched both hands in his shirt and yanked him closer.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR 10904548_329608287246855_122230511325396069_o

KARI LYNN DELL brings a lifetime of personal experience to writing western romance. She is a third-generation rancher and rodeo competitor who works on the family ranch in northern Montana, inside the Blackfeet Nation.
She exists in a perpetual state of horse-induced poverty along with her husband, Max and Spike the (female) Cowdogs, a few hundred cows and a son who resides on the same general segment of the autism spectrum as Cole Jacobs and doesn’t believe names should be gender-limited.

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