Jul 31, 2016

#MFRWauthor Book Spotlight: Visual Effects @Joyce_Holmes

Joyce M. Holmes released Visual Effects, a Contemporary Romance, with The Wild Rose Press.

Drey Winston is a fierce competitor who enjoys challenging her mind and body. But when it comes to her heart—no one ever gets close enough to compete for it. Having grown up believing she was an unwanted burden to her parents, she prefers to keep her feelings well hidden. Just when her hard-fought goals are finally within reach, the audacious Jesse Devlin comes along to breach her carefully guarded defenses.

After a disastrous marriage early in life, Jesse Devlin prefers strings-free relationships. Confident and outgoing, he gets along well with women, but his natural charm can’t seem to penetrate Drey Winston’s aloofness. While attempting to win her over, he’s the one who ends up losing his heart.

Can this commitment-phobic bachelor convince the stubbornly independent woman he loves that his feelings—and hers—are the real deal?
REVIEW
"A great read! I was immediately drawn to the characters in Joyce Holmes latest romance, Visual Effects.. A terrific story that is a must for your summer reading stash. - Goodreads Reader

EXCERPT
Jesse leaned against a tree to draw in a few deep breaths. As he straightened, he plucked his ball cap off his head and wiped his forearm across his brow, then hooted a victory cheer. “Hard work’s over. Time for the reward.”
He dropped the cap onto the sand and emptied his pockets into it. Then he pulled his T-shirt over muscled shoulders, dropped it onto the sand on top of his cap, and made quick work of his footwear. Drey stared in disbelief as he beelined down the beach and ran straight into the low surf. When he was hip-deep in the water, he slipped smoothly beneath the surface. He reappeared several feet out and turned to wave.
“Join me,” he called. “The water’s great.”
“Not a chance. The ocean is cold in summer, I can only imagine how frigid it must be today.”
“Wuss,” he scoffed and splashed water in her direction.
Shivers that had nothing to do with feeling chilly shot through Drey as she watched him emerge from the water a few minutes later. Rivulets ran down his chest, following the ridges and planes of his brawny body. Wet shorts clung to muscular thighs.
He ran his hands over his face and then shook himself like a playful pup. “You don’t know what you missed. Nothing like a dip in the salt chuck to get the heart pumping. Well, almost nothing.” He stalked deliberately up the beach toward her, and the look on his face made her back away, but she didn’t react fast enough. He caught her up in his arms, laughing at her shrieks of protest.
“Lemme go, Jesse. You’re cold. Come on, Jesse, lemme go. You’re getting me all wet.”
“That’s the whole idea. Get you wet and me warm.”
She gave him a firm push in the wrong direction as she sprinted down the beach. “Not if you can’t catch me,” she threw over her shoulder as she went.
ABOUT Joyce M. Holmes
Joyce Holmes lives with her husband and very small dog in the beautiful Okanagan region of British Columbia. The award-winning author is happily living her dream of being a stay-at-home writer. Photography and blogging about her travels are two of her passions, along with visiting her kids and grandkids. When she's not dreaming up stories in her head or planning her next great adventure, she’s off enjoying the great outdoors.

http://JoyceHolmes.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/Joyce.M.Holmes
https://twitter.com/Joyce_Holmes
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6431862.Joyce_M_Holmes
http://www.amazon.com/Joyce-M.-Holmes/e/B008H5HTV8/

Jul 24, 2016

BOOK SPOTLIGHT: The Woodsman by #MFRWauthor Belle Scarlett

An Erotic Paranormal Fairytale by MFRW author Belle Scarlett!

The Woodsman: Enchanted Lovers Book 1

What if the Big Bad Wolf was the good guy?

Once upon a moonlit night in the Enchanted Forest, where cursed beings are consigned until the spells that bind them are broken…

After he captures Lady Lily Rouge's carriage, Sir Marrok Ulfang, aka The Biggest Baddest Wolf the Enchanted Forest has ever seen, has only one day to win her heart and claim her first sexual surrender, even if it means giving the nosey pixies fluttering outside his cottage window an eyeful.

Otherwise, a wolf shapeshifter he'll stay, damned to remain in the lonely Enchanted Forest forever.

But while he can arouse her virginal body to fever pitch, he quickly learns that his spirited, saucy Lily has a mind and will of her own.

And the daylight is fading fast.

“beautifully written… powerful and exciting.”

"...masterfully written... Her characters are passionate, gritty, gripping and charming.  The love scenes are H.O.T. hot and worth reading.  I can't wait to read the next book ..."  – Manic Readers

EXCERPT: Chapter One 
Once upon a moonlit night in late October in the Enchanted Forest where cursed beings are consigned until the spells that bind them are broken…

An autumn breeze ruffled the massive male wolf’s fur. Its thick pelt shone glossy under the moonrise that crested the treetops. In the midst of stalking a juicy rabbit, the predator froze. Catching a whiff of something far more interesting on a current of air, it lifted its nose and inhaled, hardly daring to hope. A delectable scent wafted into its sensitive nostrils.

A maiden was close by. In his wood. And the harvest moon above would wax full on All Hallow’s Eve tomorrow night! Fortune was spreading her shapely legs for him this night. At last…

Pricking his ears forward, the wolf padded in and out of the tree shadows, turning his proud head this way and that. His keen hearing detected the creaking, jangling sound of a moving carriage. It was rattling along on the north road, just before Troll’s Bridge! His blood raced when he realized his maiden would pass by the Hexed Waterfall and directly through the heart of his territory very soon.
She would never leave the boundary of his lands, vowed the wolf silently.

The approaching woman’s exciting scent grew stronger, further teasing and intoxicating his senses. All of the wolf’s considerable hunting instincts sprang to life. Through sheer self-will, he prevented himself from dashing off into the bushes after her erotic perfume like a yappy cur chasing a peddler’s cart.

The powerful, dark creature pointed his nose toward the silver moon and unleashed a fearful howl that slashed through the night air.

ABOUT Belle Scarlett
By day, she’s a mild-mannered story consultant, film producer, and award-winning screenwriter in Lost Angeles. By night, she assumes her super-secret identity as Belle Scarlett, author of futuristic and paranormal romances with a high sizzle factor. Belle is also a SAG-AFTRA commercial voice over actress and audiobook producer who narrates all of her own books…. Look for them on Audible.com!

Aiding Belle in her quest for kick-ass, magical romance and out-of-this-world, passionate-ever-afters are her trusty sidekicks, Tall-Alpha-Blue-Eyed Boyfriend, upon whom her heroes are based, and The Evil Feral Cat, upon whom her villains are based." "By day, she’s a mild-mannered story consultant, film producer, and award-winning screenwriter in Lost Angeles. By night, she assumes her super-secret identity as Belle Scarlett, author of futuristic and paranormal romances with a high sizzle factor. Belle is also a SAG-AFTRA commercial voice over actress and audiobook producer who narrates all of her own books…. Look for them on Audible.com!

Aiding Belle in her quest for kick-ass, magical romance and out-of-this-world, passionate-ever-afters are her trusty sidekicks, Tall-Alpha-Blue-Eyed Boyfriend, upon whom her heroes are based, and The Evil Feral Cat, upon whom her villains are based.

Jul 21, 2016

Let's go on A Witch's Journey on #Thursday13 with #MFRWauthor @Tena Stetler


#MFRW Author Tena Stetler is a paranormal romance and cozy mystery author with an over-active imagination. She wrote her first vampire romance at the age of twelve, to the chagrin of her mother and the delight of her friends. Colorado is home; shared with her husband, a brilliant Chow Chow, a spoiled parrot and a forty-year-old box turtle. Any winter evening, you can find her curled up in front of a crackling fire with a good book, a mug of hot chocolate and a big bowl of popcorn.

                        A Witch's Journey 

Genre Paranormal Romance
Publisher The WIid Rose Press  

Pepper McKay comes from a long line of powerful witches. Unfortunately, magic brings her nothing but trouble. She learned the love of wildlife rescue and rehab from her Aunt Ashling. After graduating from college, Pepper works for Salem Wildlife Sanctuary and lives from paycheck to paycheck until she inherits the McKay property in Lobster Cove. With the family land and resources, she dares to dream of starting her own wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center.
Lathen Quartz, a former Navy SEAL turned handyman maintains the enchanted McKay property for the McKay estate. But someone is trying to steal the McKay magic. Lathen offers to help Pepper achieve her life-long dream of building a wildlife center. During the long hours spent together on the project, their mutual attraction can’t be denied. But each harbors a deep, dark secret. Will they overcome their demons and give love a chance?

 
Buy link:Amazon 
 
Thirteen sentences from A Witch's Journey.
1. The scrying crystal connected to a delicate gold chain that seconds before floated in the air, dropped and bounced once, then came to rest on top a dog-eared map of the United States.
2. Since you are the sole beneficiary as set out in Ms. McKay's Will, the property and the rest of the estate now go to you.
3. She yelped and whirled around to see a muscular man, well over six feet, with surfer blond hair nearly to his shoulders, tousled by the ocean breeze, rounding the corner of the cabin.
4. Suddenly, a rainbow shower of knife-sharp feathers zoomed out of the cabin door, across the air, and sliced through the man’s clothes, pinning him to the ground.
5. The sirens’ wail echoed all around her, and Kaylee’s scream broke through the chaos, then everything went black.
6. The days and nights blurred together as Lathen, Pepper, contractors, and volunteers worked feverishly on the clinics and habitats for the wildlife rescue and rehab center.
7. He held out a tiny bleating seal pup wrapped in a blanket, and carefully uncovered its side and right flipper.
8. A cold shiver ran up her spine as goose bumps crept up her arms.
9. She screamed, stomped backward grinding her heel onto his foot, then whirled around, elbows out and connected with the bridge of his nose.
10.The waves on the pond slapped noisily against the rocky shore as the mist crawling along the ground and settling over the pond took shape.
11. He reached up in the air and pretended to catch the kiss, then held that fist to his heart, giving her a devilish grin.
12. "Never expected to have a werewolf in our lineage."
13. "I mean no disrespect, but in recent years, you've disengaged from your magic until your life or the lives you cared about were in danger.
 

Meet the author here:
 
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Blog
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Thewildrosepress
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Jul 17, 2016

#MFRWauthor BOOK SPOTLIGHT: Knight Protector @RueAllyn

An Erotic Medieval Romance from MFRW author Rue Allyn!

Knight Protector, Knight Chronicles # 2
Crimson Romance

Blackmailed into marrying her family’s enemy, then swiftly widowed by illness, Lady Sorcha Marr must take charge of a clan she hates as much as they hate her. But fate intervenes in the form of her husband’s twin—the man who betrayed her and led to her downfall.

Sir Colin Marr fled his Highland home in disgrace, believing he would never again see the woman he loved. Returning a decade later to root out Scottish traitors who have infiltrated his family stronghold, he must persuade Sorcha to set aside her hostility and treat him as her husband in his brother’s place.

He needs the cover not only to save Scotland but her inheritance his resentful clan would gladly confiscate. Has fate set them up to even an old score, or is it giving them a new shot at learning to trust … and love?
REVIEW
"I love a good historical romance and I thought this one was great! Delicious knights, secrets and intrigue kept me on the edge of my seat and reading. Rue weaves a tale of Medieval Highland Romance that will melt your heart."

EXCERPT
Colin wanted her to believe that he was truly happy for her. And he was. It was just … Better nae put too much into precise thought, lest he speak his mind.
“Regardless of my hopes, I may nae be able to return for some time,” he hedged, unable to admit even to himself how much he regretted leaving. If only she wasna to wed Brice. “Please, I beg you, grant me a kiss of peace to bless my travels?”
“Of course. When Brice and I are married, I’ll have the Strathnaver priest say masses for you every week, as well.”
“Thank you.” He stood, pulling her up with him.
She tilted her face, and he lowered his mouth to hers.
He intended only the lightest brush of lips, but she lifted herself onto her toes in the same moment, and her soft flesh yielded beneath the added pressure. She opened, and impulsively, he took the chance to taste her, to lick and savor her sweetness.
Her arms went around his neck, and she answered his advance with an artless passion that he wanted to believe came from her heart. She trembled against him. He embraced her, crushing her breasts to his chest. Her tongue’s small forays tantalized him. Desire raced in his heart, and his head swam. Could she love me? How could that be? He dinna know, but he would share this joy with her for as long as heaven allowed.
“Brother, release my betrothed.” Audible but slurred, the menacing whisper pricked his ears the way Brice’s blade stung Colin’s neck.
ABOUT Rue Allyn
I love to hear from readers about your favorite books and real life adventures. Crazy Cat stories are always welcome. You can send me your words of wisdom . . . Don’t shake your head at me; all words are wise in one context or another. You can trust me on this; I’m an author. As I was saying, you can send your words of wisdom, humor, and friendship to me at contact @RueAllyn.com. Can’t wait to hear from you.

http://RueAllyn.com
https://www.facebook.com/RueAllynFriends
https://twitter.com/RueAllyn, http://www.amazon.com/Rue-Allyn/e/B00AUBF3NI/
www.goodreads.com/author/show/5031290.Rue_Allyn

Jul 14, 2016

On #Thursday13 let's go Beneath The Lake with #MFRWauthor Casi McLean

        

Originally from McLean, Virginia, Casi relocated to Atlanta after graduating from the University of Georgia. Fascinated with stories since childhood, she became a teacher of English, creative writing and drama. The search for her biological father revealed secrets that rekindled her passion for writing and inspired her memoir, Wingless Butterfly. Casi's publications also include five novelettes and her debut novel, Beneath The Lake. She lives in Atlanta, writes, creates trailers and tips for authors, speaks, and coaches others to let go of the past and pursue their dreams.


Genre  Sci-Fi/fantasy, Romantic Suspense
Publisher The Wild Rose Press  

 Blurb
A ghost town submerged beneath Atlanta's famous man-made Lake Lanier reportedly lures victims to a watery grave. But when Lacey Montgomery's car spins out of control and hurtles into the depths of the icy, black water, she awakens in the arms of a handsome stranger, in a place she's never heard of -- 34 years before she was born.

When the 2012 lawyer tangles with the 1949 hunk, fire and ice swirl into a stream of sweltering desire. BobbyReynolds is smitten the moment the storm-ravaged woman opens her eyes. Learning the truth about her origins does nothing to stop the passion from taking root in his heart, and leaves him torn between finding a way to help Lacey return to 2012 or convincing her stay with him.

The desperation to find her way home dissolves as Lacey falls in love with a town destined to be erased from the face of the Earth, and the man who vows to protect it. Will the couple discover the key to the mysterious portal before time rips them apart? Or will their star-crossed spirits wander forever through a ghost town buried beneath the lake?


Buy link http://amzn.to/1Q3xRS7 



13 sentences from Beneath the Lake


Lacey awakened in the arms of a stranger, in a town she never heard of––thrity-four years before she was born.   


Two dim lights glowed through the darkness, like eyes of a panther stalking its prey.


Oozing blood trickled into his palms and, one by one, his fingers slowly slipped.  


Obsession drove him, his future teetered on the brink and Lacey was at the pinnacle.

The lake is filled with secrets and it never gives up its dead.

The waterlogged face of Lanier’s phantom ghost pressed against my window.

Watchful of unexpected movement in the Cimmerian shade, my anxiety deepened.


A chill fisted in my stomach as my foot slipped to the edge, spitting rocks into the lake far below.

He looked like an angel––An angel in sexy jeans and a tight, white T-shirt.


Like components of a fine timepiece, each sliver of his plan had to fit together perfectly.

A coma––trapped in my own head, I wasn't sure I ever wanted to wake up.

He lead Lacey to the depths of the lake and spiral her into the gates of hell.

I caught a glimpse, but his faint image dissolved into a silvery haze.


You can stalk the author here:
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Jul 10, 2016

#MFRWauthor Book Spotlight: Staking A Claim @DevonMcKay2014

A Contemporary Romance from MFRW author Devon McKay!
Staking A Claim
The Wild Rose Press

For most people, seeing Alaska is a dream come true. For Miami Beach resident, Samantha Held, it is merely a job assignment. Creating an advertisement for vacationing in the state gets her one step closer to achieving her career goal—partnership in Kolinsky’s Advertisement Agency.

Blake Langford is not willing to accept any exploitation of his beloved state, no matter how desirable the striking, southern blonde bombshell with fiery green eyes is, and he’s determined to sabotage Sam’s goal in every way. Falling in love with the enemy, however, was never part of the plan.

REVIEWS
5.0 out of 5 stars
Excellent Book
By Christina on October 3, 2015
Excellent read! If you love a book that's steamy with a great love story than this book is for you! It's the kind of book that once you start you can't stop until it's done. I love the author and how she makes the book come alive!! Looking forward to the next book!!!

5.0 out of 5 stars
Travel to Alaska through the pages of ""Staking a Claim""
By Laura Freeman on December 8, 2015
In Staking a Claim by Devon McKay, she hits on all the elements of a romantic conflict. Sam is a Miami advertiser visiting Alaska to sell it to tourists while Blake is a naturalist trying to preserve and protect Alaska from invasion by ignorant visitors. The rugged outdoorsman and pretty city girl have instant chemistry but have to navigate their opposing goals. Devon may be an Ohio native but her years living in Alaska bring the adventures to life as Blake decides to educate Sam in the mysteries of the wilderness. She shows him the beauty and wonder of the land through fresh eyes. Devon develops the romance with an ebb and flow that keeps the reader turning the pages. The likeable characters are easy to befriend, and Devon mixes humor with adventure to move the romance along. When Sam is lost in the woods, the suspense of her fate builds to a final confrontation between civilizations.

EXCERPT
Fuming, Sam held his gaze as she considered his offer. She couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity to be dropped into her lap. She could learn everything she needed to know about Alaska and have a handsome, but overly protective, guide of the state to show her. Not to mention what his knowledge could do for the brochure.
It would also mean more time in his temperamental company.
Sam considered her options. She had gotten lucky finding Carlton Landing, but what about locating her elusive hotel? As proven last night, it was more than evident she couldn’t even read a map correctly. So, what real choice did she have?
She pictured her new office…the view of the ocean…the partnership. She was willing to take the chance. Besides, she’d never been the kind of girl who shied away from a challenge. Hell, so far, her life had been a series of challenges.
“It’s a deal.” Her voice came off cool and professional despite the quickening of her heartbeat. She offered her hand to shake on the agreement. “We haven’t officially met. Samantha Held. I go by Sam.”
“Blake Langford.” He extended his, grasping her hand and repeating the name she already knew by heart. He held onto her grasp for a minute longer than necessary. “I go by Wolf.”
Again, the breathtaking grin resurfaced, and an odd pulsation spiked through Sam, leaving her insides quivering like a bowl of gelatin as she second guessed her decision.
What kind of fool makes a deal with a man called Wolf?
ABOUT Devon McKay
Living in Alaska for 27 years, Devon McKay has many exciting stories to tell about the state. On several occasions, she was chased by a mother moose defending her young, stalked by a bear, endured temperatures of forty below and once was even trapped in an avalanche. She loved every minute of it!

After writing her first novel, Cowboy On The Run, she now calls a small ranch in Ohio home with her loving husband and teenage son. Although the farm life is slightly more laid back then the perils of Alaska, Devon enjoys the slower pace of the country lifestyle which gives her plenty of time to follow her passion of writing.

http://devonmckay.weebly.com/
https://www.facebook.com/DevonMcKay2014
https://www.goodreads.com/devonmckay
https://www.amazon.com/author/devonmckay
https://www.pinterest.com/devonmckay2014

Jul 7, 2016

On #Thursday13 #MFRWauthor Margo Bond Collins tells us what's Under Her Skin


#MFRWauthor Margo Bond Collins is addicted to coffee (mmm...caffeine) and SF/F television, especially Supernatural (mmm...Winchesters). She writes paranormal and contemporary romance, urban fantasy, and paranormal mystery. She lives in Texas with her daughter and several spoiled pets. Although she teaches college-level English courses online, writing fiction is her first love. She enjoys reading urban fantasy and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about heroes, vampires, ghosts, werewolves, and the women who love (and sometimes fight) them.

                                                            Under Her Skin 

 Genre  Paranormal 
Publisher Bathory Gate Press

 Blurb
She's lucky he's a charmer. He's lucky she doesn't bite ... much.
Lindi Parker works hard at being human, not an easy task for a snake shifter. She has no desire to search for others like her—until a new case changes everything. When Lindi learns that she she's not the only shapeshifter in the world, she also realizes she might be next on a killer's list.

In order to save herself and the abused children she works with, she will have to team up with Dr. Kade Nevala, a member of the shifter tribe responsible for eradicating weresnakes—and the most attractive man Lindi's ever met. Even more terrifying, she’ll need to embrace her serpent side, a choice that has enormous consequences for Lindi, and for everyone around her.
 




Thirteen Shapeshifters I Love
1. Oz from Buffy the Vampire Slayer
2. Mercy Thompson from Patricia Briggs' series
3. Sam Merlotte from True Blood
4. Jane Yellowrock from Faith Hunter's series
5. Mystique from The X-Men
6. Kitty from Carrie Vaughn's series
7. Tyler Lockwood from The Vampire Diaries
8. Bisclavret, a medieval werewolf in one of Marie de France's lays
9. Curran from Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels series
10. Scott from Teen Wolf
11. Elena and Clay from Kelley Armstrong's series
12. Peter Rumancek from Hemlock Grove
13. My own snake-shifter, Lindi, from Under Her Skin!

 You can find more about Margo here:
Amazon Author Page
 Email
Website
 Blog
Twitter 

 Google +
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Pinterest

 

Jul 3, 2016

Where does #MFRWauthor @AnneCarrole get her Story Ideas?

MFRW author Anne Carrole shares where her story ideas come from.
Anne Carrole has been writing stories since she was in elementary school but back then the hero was more likely to ride a bike not a horse and share a stick of gum rather than a kiss. Her muse usually comes wearing a cowboy hat. Raised on a farm with horses, dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits and whatever other animals she could convince her parents to shelter, she’s married to her own sweet-talking hero and is the proud mother of a college-aged daughter. They all share their home with a sleek black cat with way too much attitude. 

Anne’s Website   |  Amazon   |   Anne’s Facebook   |   Anne’s Twitter

My story ideas often come from people in real life who inspire me. I have always been fascinated with the history of the American West and that led me to an interest in rodeo and ranching (I’m a farm girl, after all) which infuse the Hearts of Wyoming Series of which The Maverick Meets His Match is Book 2. There are only a few, very few, women who raise livestock for rodeos and Mandy was inspired by one of them, a woman who recently began to run her father’s well-known rodeo company. Intrigued I read a few articles about her, since she is somewhat of a phenomenon, and also read a book on the family’s business. That was all I needed for the imagination to saddle up.

As for why a romance? I love writing romance because you get to explore the characters—their past, their growth, how they change, and how they remain the same. In romance, the characters are the story so having interesting characters to explore is important. As both a reader and a writer, I want that Happily Ever After. At the end of a long day, I don’t want to read about someone else’s misery unless I know that at the end, it is going to be all right. In a world where so little seems in my control, I need to know it is going to come out right. I believe a good story is one where we want to empathize, sympathize, feel for what the character is going through.

One of my favorite book reviews received from a reader was this: “I have just finished reading Loving a Cowboy and I have to say they don't come any better than this! I laughed and I cried (happy tears).”  Reading that review I felt I had done my job. And what is better than the emotional whirlwind you are in when you are falling in love.

Anne Carrole's recent release is The Maverick Meets His Match.

AMAZON Buy Link!
FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

BLURB
Rodeos, wedding bells, and one crazy will!

When Mandy Prescott’s grandfather dies, this determined cowgirl expects to head up the family’s stock rodeo company. But JM Prescott’s last will and testament not only gives that honor to Ty Martin, a man who broke Mandy’s heart a decade ago, it contains a crazy provision: to gain back control, she must agree to marry Ty Martin for a period of six months. Mandy has three days to decide—marry a man she doesn’t trust but is still attracted to, or risk her company being sold. Risking her company is one thing. Risking her heart is another

EXCERPT
Ty Martin had never regretted the choices he’d made, until now. Shading his eyes against the sunlight glinting off the dial of his Rolex, he checked the time. Twenty minutes until life changed. Maybe temporarily. Maybe for good.Or bad.Tamping down the unease that always came with loose ends, Ty moved past the corrals where the cowhands were topping off the water troughs. Heads popped up like jack-in-the-boxes, but no one acknowledged him. Not a word, not a wave, not a nod. Instead, they stared as if he were some curiosity on parade.Ty tugged the brim of his Stetson lower. At least being an outsider would make decisions easier.Without breaking stride, he swept by the barn where the stalls were being mucked out and moved on past the low building that served as an office for the livestock rodeo company he would now head. Dust kicked up as he went, coating his custom-made alligator boots and threatening to settle on his black dress pants.A steer bellowed in the distance, part of the ranch herd that had been brought in for culling.He scanned the side parking area for a gray pickup truck. Silver metal glistened just a few feet away from his black BMW. At least he wouldn’t be the last one to walk into the lawyer’s office.For most of his life he had run from anything to do with ranching, working his way through law school, scoring a job at a land development firm, and fighting his way to a partnership—only to eventually walk away. And now, here he was, heading up a livestock operation. A rodeo livestock operation.Just a year. That’s what he had promised. Just enough time to decide the fate of the company that bore another family’s name. And they would hate him for it, or at least one person would hate him for it, if she didn’t already.

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