Guest Blogger Tina Bass Introduces Kade, Who’s Not Your Typical Cowboy

Hi! My name is Tina Bass and I’m in the process of writing The Safe Series. The first in the series, His Safe Keeping, (available now) is where you met Kade. Who is Kade? Well Kade’s not your typical cowboy, although he has the boots, the hat, the cows, and even the horses. See Kade lives in the beautiful state of Virginia. I know, I know, the last thing you think when you think Virginia is “cowboy,” But here’s the thing, in Virginia we have farms, lots and lots of farms, but we also have ranches. What’s the difference? Farms are basically used to produce food, either grown or raised, like beef or dairy cows. A ranch however is more for animals that are bred and raised for profit, there are lots of different types, such as sheep, American bison and alpacas, but most common are cattle and horses. Which brings us back to Kade and his ranch. As I said, Kade’s not your typical cowboy, (but he does have all the requirements) Kade has spent years in the Air Force then even more years as a state police. Wanting to give up the uniforms, he was able to purchase the ranch he spent so much time on growing up. Now retiring early from the force with only one thing in mind…becoming the full time “cowboy” his fellow officers like to refer to him as, and running his ranch, raising his cattle and just being on his land. His land…the one place he could always find the kind of peace that he could never manage to find anywhere else. And after years of having first-hand knowledge of the worst in human beings, all he wants is that escape from a world he was so used to, to the peaceful quiet beauty of his land…until his sense of responsibility throws her into his path…and his life changes forever.

 
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His Safe Keeping by Tina Bass
 
*****Blurb*****

Start the Safe Series with book 1 – His Safe Keeping 

Krista Avery moved to the sleepy town of Mt. Eve, Virginia, away from big city life, enticed there by a research doctor that is fascinated with her blood. Trying to build a life for herself after a horrific event in her past sent her into a spiral, she is a woman battling a rare blood disorder and the memories she has never dealt with. Returning home from the hospital after the Doctors experimental treatment, a dizzy spell forces her to pull over to the side of the road. 

Lawson “Kade” McKaden is a State Trooper, ready to retire, returning home after a transport to a Federal Prison that wasn’t supposed to be his. After a stint in the Air Force and a satisfying career, he is ready to leave the uniforms behind for the life of a rancher. But a broken down car on the side of the road calls to his sense of responsibility and the sick woman inside calls to his heart. They have more in common than they know. 

An escaped rapist turned serial killer is hunting her. She was his first and he has plans to be her last. Together can they beat back the demons from her childhood? Will Krista have to face the demon from her past alone, or is she Kade’s for… His Safe Keeping? 

 
 

*****Excerpt*****

Stepping out of the official cruiser, hand resting lightly on his weapon which was holstered at his hip, Kade walked to the open driver’s side window. Looking into the car, he saw her. She was bent over the steering wheel, her long chestnut colored hair pulled back with a clip.

“Ma’am, is everything all right?” She turned her head and his breath caught in his throat. A beautiful face, streaked with tears squeezed his heart. Without thinking, he abandoned all of his years of training. Without concern for his own safety, he yanked open the door. Squatting down beside the car and balancing on the balls of his feet, Kade spoke to her. “Sweetheart, what’s wrong? Are you hurt? Did you have an accident?”

Turning her head instead of raising it, Krista looked into the greenest eyes she’d ever seen. They were filled with concern. For her? No, she thought, they can’t be. He didn’t even know her. “What did you say? What accident?” Sitting up, she tried to answer and the whole ordeal came back into her mind full force. The nausea hit and this time it wasn’t going to pass. She was going to be sick.

“Ohno!” she exclaimed, just before she covered her mouth with one hand and scrambled to get out of the car, knocking him out of her way. As she ran around the car, Krista made it to the grassy right-of-way just as she began heaving. Her whole body was shaking. The weakness brought her to her knees. When she finally finished, she scooted back against the back car tire, drew up her knees which were now throbbing with pain, and laid her head down on them.

“It never affected me this fast before,” Krista murmured to the big man as he knelt down beside her. Her eyes swept over him. Oh, crap! He was a cop! She was so not up for this. With a sigh of resignation, she held out her wrists, waiting for him to put the handcuffs on and arrest her.

Kade looked at her outreached arms and then at her pale face. Too pale. “What are you doing?” “Aren’t you going to arrest me?”
“Why would I do that?” 
he questioned, confused.
“Well, because I kinda’ knocked you on your booty and you’re a cop. Isn’t that like assaulton a police officer or something?” Her voice was weak and she sounded resigned. “Booty?” He smirked. “No, I’m not going to arrest you.” 

 

*****Bio*****

I’m a light erotic romance writer, who loves a happily ever after. I lives in a small town in Virginia with my three children. I am your normal everyday mom of one grown and two almost grown teenagers who has recently discovered the joys of writing. When not busy writing, I enjoys reading and shopping for vintage items. I came into writing later in life, after my characters decided to take over and I was able to hear the stories in my head.

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The Writer’s Life for me! ***Prizes***

RWI February 2007 010 (1)These past couple weeks have been K-razy! For those who haven’t been following me closely, you might not realize it, but I’m two writers–Myla Jackson and Elle James. In order for me to write under both pen names, I have to keep writing, and writing, and writing to satisfy the voracious appetites of my readers. Oy! So this is an ongoing challenge. As Elle James, I write for the Intrigue, Romantic Suspense and Nocturne lines, sometimes as many as 7 books in a year. Deep breath…As Myla Jackson, I write for Samhain Publishing writing 4 shorter books a year. Then as both Myla and Elle, I write books for Independent Publishing. All these tasks take time. Add in the occasional conferences like Romantic Times, Romance Writers of American and Novelist Inc, and top it off with owning a business and family commitments and vacations, I never know if I’m coming or going.

And if the writing isn’t enough to keep up with, as an author, we have to let people know what books are out there and when they are being released. I update my own website, sometimes make my own covers, draft newsletters and send them and hop on Facebook and Twitter whenever I have a spare moment…cough, cough, haha!

That being said, I’m always behind, never doing enough with my FB and Twitter and behind on my updates for websites and promo to let people know I have books out.

MeganERLast week, I took an entire week to go to a writer’s retreat and wrote my fingers off. This week, not a word. I’ve been playing catch up all week. My daughter had an ATV accident and I’ve been spending time with her in the ER and at home medicating away the pain. Today I’m headed to Romance Writers of America conference and will be there until Sunday.

I need another me to do all the work I have to do. I’m seriously considering hiring a personal assistant to work at my side every day (or at least part time).

This month alone, I’ll have had 3 books come out, one of which I had to gather 12 authors’ input for the formatter, changes and load to various publishing venues.

I barely had time to look at the clothes and promo I need to take to RWA before I was throwing them into my car. When you read this, I’ll be driving to San Antonio. It’s an 11-hour drive. Oy!

Leave a comment telling me about your K-razy life for a chance to win a copy of SEAL’S HONOR, SEAL’S DESIRE or SEAL’S EMBRACE. There will be three winners so don’t miss your chance to win and please check out these new offerings:

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Hearts & Heroes Book #1:
Wyatt’s War
Samhain Publishing
July 8, 2014

Samhain | Amazon
Nook
| Kobo

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The Adair Legacy Book#4

Secret Service Rescue
Harlequin Romantic Suspense
July 2014

Amazon | Nook | Kobo

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HOT ALPHA SEALS

NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Authors

Boxed Set

Amazon | Nook | Kobo

Anne Elizabeth~ The Kiss of a SEAL
Cat Johnson ~ Night with a SEAL
Cindy Dees ~ Hot Bayou SEAL
Cristin Harber ~ Delta: Retribution
Delilah Devlin ~ Watch Over Me
Elle James ~ SEALS’s Obsession
Gennita Low
~ The SEAL
J.M. Madden ~ Unbreakable SEAL
P.T. Michelle ~ Mister Black
Sabrina York ~ Stone Hard SEAL
Sharon Hamilton ~ SEAL’s Promise
Teresa Reasor ~ Breaking Ties

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Cowboys and Bikers and Giveaways OH MY!

I’ve had a busy year, and it’s time to unveil my projects! I’ve got dirty-hot cowboys, badass bikers and 3 PRINT BOOKS TO GIVEAWAY!

 

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Haven’t met the Boot Knockers yet? You’ll want to get to know this rowdy group of cowboys who also fix women’s problems in and out of the bedroom! Pushin’ Buttons is out now!

 

 

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You can take the biker chick out of the motorcycle club, but she always comes back. Especially if there’s a tattooed god in a cut.

 Ever is back in the Life she left behind five years ago. She wants revenge…and the tattooed god in a cut.

LOVE TIES out now!

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Utah is the only Davies brother the lawyer will speak with about the virile trail his father blazed across the United States or the secret families he’s left behind.

Almost a Cowboy coming August 7 from Taliesin Publishing!

 

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AND book 2 of the Boot Knockers Ranch series–coming September 9. There are no words for desire this hot…but he’ll sure try to find them. Up for pre-order.

 

Now that you’re drooling over all these hardworking heroes, here’s the nitty-gritty. I’m giving away 3 print copies from my Country Fever Series–Hard Ridin’, Lip Lock, and Unbroken to ONE lucky winner. And of course they’ll be signed!

 

Rafflecopter signup here.

HardRidin200X300  liplock150X225  Unbroken200X300

 

Thanks for reading!

Em Petrova

~hardworking heroes–in bed and out~

 

Visit Em Petrova

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Cover Reveal for Desiree Holt’s Upcoming Hot Release, FINDING JULIA

Our own beloved and wonderful author, Desiree Holt, is sharing her newest cover with us!

Desiree

On July 29 FINDING JULIA will be available for preorder. Watch for the links. This is Desiree Holt’s first book for Kensington Publishing’s Lyrical Imprint. She has also signed a contract for a football series and is well into the first draft of Book One: Forward Pass. I hope you’re all as excited as I am!

Get a taste of FINDING JULIA here: http://bit.ly/1rMi7c5

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What’s next?

I’ve been on a writing slump this year. My last release, Cowboys Mine, came out in January and I’m used to writing two books a month! I promise I have numerous projects on the go and will get back in the saddle ASAP. We are in the middle of an adoption which is very time consuming with all the paper work, courses, and home visits. I’m also busy raising chickens, bunnies, taking care of an orphan robin, entertaining my four kids on summer holidays, and preparing for our trip to Disney Florida next week. *deep breath*

What I’m working on…

I’m currently half finished the next book in my Iron Spur Ranch series. I’m also working on the next book in my Uniform Fetish series, my Wolves of Climax follow-up book, and I will start a new western as soon as these are complete. I am debating writing in the world of Cowboys Mine with a book for the three Irish cowboy brothers mentioned in the book, or a new stand-alone western. Decisions, decisions.

In other news, all sales at Evernight Publishing this week go to World Vision’s Education for Girls fund. And the great reviews are building for Cowboys Mine, so thank you very much for that.

I hope everyone is having an awesome summer!!!

Stacey xo

cowboys-mine

 

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Parker Kincade is in the house!

I can’t tell you how excited I am to be here! Not only do I write smexy cowboys, I also love to READ smexy cowboys – and I am a fan of all the ladies on this blog. To actually be a part of such a fabulous group of authors … well … let’s just say I did a little happy dance and raised a shot of maple whiskey in toast to the ladies for inviting me.

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Parker Kincade. I write edge-of-your-seat-sexy romantic suspense, hot and steamy sports romance, and erotic western romance. No matter the genre, my books are filled with dirty talkin’ alpha men and strong, independent women. Oh, fair warning: I love the “f” word – which means my heroes love it, too.

Now, let’s get to the good stuff. A smokin’ hot cowboy and a giveaway! :)

In White Collar Cowboy, book one of my latest series, Shadow Maverick Ranch, Gavin Mathis leaves the big city. A decision not without consequences…

ParkerKincade_WhiteCollarCowboy_200pxGavin Mathis is ready to settle down. He’s quit his job and come home to Shadow Maverick Ranch to do just that. Too bad his decision caused his beautiful former colleague to lose her job.

Lauren Delgado is a no-nonsense businesswoman. She’s had a crush on Gavin for years, but has a strict “hands-off” policy with the men she works with. When her life takes an unexpected turn, there’s nothing to stop her from accepting his invitation to Galveston Island, where the policy is definitely hands-on.

 

So, what do you say? Want a little taste of Gavin?

********

A tiny sound emerged from her throat, and his cock hardened in response. Her arms dropped. So did his gaze. The shimmering blue panties she wore didn’t quite cover her butt cheeks and he groaned as she bent to pick up what appeared to be a bikini top. Not panties then. Jesus, she was changing into a bathing suit. Not performing some kind of erotic strip tease.

Lauren spun, slapping her palms to her breasts. Not fast enough to keep him from seeing her tawny nipples, both drawn up to tight little buds.

Her gaze drifted over him, lingering over his chest before heading lower. Her eyes widened as she took in the rest of him. “W-what are you doing here?”

He made no attempt to cover himself. “It’s my house.” Simple, to the point. Truth. And all he was capable of at the moment.

Her fingers tightened, her breasts threatening to spill from the confines of her small, delicate hands. Hands he’d like to replace with his own.

“That’s not what I meant. You said you were leaving tonight.”

He nodded slowly. “Yes, and I did. You never asked me where I was going.”

“So, you asked me to come, but thought I wouldn’t if I knew you’d be here?”

He could practically hear the gears turning in her head. And he appreciated the fact she was pleased with what she saw, but she was making coherent thought damn near impossible.

“Staring at it like that is only going to make it worse, sweetheart,” he said gently.

Her eyes snapped up, a light blush staining her cheeks. “Like what?”

“Like it’s candy.” She was killing him. He couldn’t remember ever being so hard. The stubborn set of her chin, the darkening of her eyes, everything about her intrigued him, called to him.

“I need a shower.” The saltwater from his swim was already starting to make his skin itch, and he needed to get the hell away before he tossed her to the couch and fucked her blind.

He looked her up and down again, taking full advantage of his first opportunity to see her body, the curves that had tempted him for so long. She was even more beautiful than he’d imagined. Lean, muscular legs, rounded hips and an ass he’d like to sink his hands into. Breasts too big for her smaller hands, but perfect for his.

“Unless you’d like to join me, I’d suggest you put on something more substantial.” He glanced pointedly the apex of her legs. “Because knowing I’m one scrap of material from having you naked is driving me crazy.” As if she hadn’t seen the rock-hard evidence of his arousal already.

Slowly, her lips curled upward. “Well, I seem to remember you telling me I could help myself to anything I wanted.” She dropped her hands, baring her nipples for his view. “So, yes, Gavin. I think a shower sounds perfect.”

*********

Until August 31, you can purchase White Collar Cowboy, for $0.99 in the Occupational Hazard: The Ultimate Workplace Romance Box Set.OccupationalHazardBundle_200px

Buy Links:

Occupational Hazard: The Ultimate Workplace Romance Box Set

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

White Collar Cowboy (Individual Title – $2.99)

 Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

Now that you know a little about me, tell me about YOU! Let’s start with favorite western romances – what are some of your favorite titles? I’ll give one commenter an eBook copy of White Collar Cowboy! Be sure to include your email and preferred eBook format in the comment.

Until next time…

~Parker

Posted in cowboys, Excerpts, Uncategorized, Westerns | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

SABLE AT DEAD MAN’S HOLE

dead man's hole

DEAD MAN’S HOLE

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I’m currently writing HOW TO ROPE A MCCOY. And all of you know how I like to write, I like to include real places, mysterious places – places that people might want to learn more about or visit one day. In past books, I’ve taken readers to Avery Island down in South Louisiana – a lush tropical garden created by an eccentric millionaire who saved the white egret and singlehandedly ruined the swamp by introducing the Nutria rat to Louisiana. Other places that I’ve explored both in person and in prose are Enchanted Rock, Caddo Lake, Evergreen Plantation, the haunted Myrtles, and the vast mysterious Atchafalaya swamp. I long to create books so that you can visualize the setting of my characters and fall in love with the places that I personally visit and am intrigued by.
In HOW TO ROPE A COWBOY, I found a place about 50 minutes north of Austin called DEAD MAN’S HOLE. It will figure prominently in the plot of the story and boy, does it have a history.
Dead Man’s Hole is a cave about two miles south of Marble Falls. It was discovered in 1821 by an etymologist – yes, a bug-hunter – but it wasn’t explored until the 1950’s because of noxious, poisonous gases which emanated from the deep cavern. It’s not very wide – only about seven or eight feet, but it is one hundred fifty foot deep and branches of in another couple of directions for about fifty feet or so. The Hill Country of Texas is full of caves – some of them lost, some of them famous and some of them – allegedly full of gold and silver.
A few days ago, I went to Dead Man’s Hole. It was a hot day. I took the two dogs with me and we drove down several ranch roads until we find the small roadside park. It was highlighted by huge white rocks forming a drive and later a smaller walkway leading up to a historical marker and behind that – the hole. We got out of the car and made our way over – Abby was more enthusiastic than Mojo. In fact, Abby bounded down toward the hole like she was going to jump off in it and I was yelling and hollering – but there is a grate over the hole now, a steel plate but it has an Abby size hole in the top so you can peer down in it. Well, it used to be an Abby size hole, thank goodness, but Abby has gained a lot of weight since I got her neutered.
The marker told a strange story and then I will you a stranger one. The hole was once used as a dumping ground for bodies, especially during the Civil War. That particular part of Texas was home to both Confederate and Union sympathizers, slave owners and anti-slavery individuals, slaves and freed men. And there were disagreements and gunfights and battles and people were captured, tried and hung on a huge oak that stood over the hole. There were marks on the big branches to attest to how many ropes had burnt marks into its branches. Most of these people died because their opinions were not the same as their accusers. Makes one nervous about the times we live in – doesn’t it?
After 1951, the cave was explored and the remains of 17 people were found. Their bones were removed and taken to the Burnet County courthouse – where they promptly disappeared! Now, I wonder who took those bones and why? Now, that’s an answer I’d like to know.
Now, you know me – there’s always more to the story. A group of ghosthunters have investigated Dead Man’s Hole and recorded some EVP’s, electronic voice phenomenon or better known as the voices of the dead. Now what would you expect to record here? The voices of the dead and dying? Confederate generals barking orders? Cowboys and cattle rustlers? No, the day they recorded the voices at Dead Man’s hole, a young girls voice was recorded saying, “Daddy, can we go to Dairy Queen?” and later a mother saying, “We’d better get in the car before it rains.”
Sounds like the vestiges of a family’s summer outing. Who can be afraid of a ghost who just wants an ice cream cone?
But in my story HOW TO ROPE A MCCOY – there will be action here at Dead Man’s Hole and suspense and one helluva climactic ending.
There are other things to – my motto so many cowboys, so little rope comes to life and Cato actually ropes a McCoy. Ha! That’s one hot scene. And there’s a tubing scene where the hero and the heroine are in the water and – lord, the water heats twenty degrees the sex is so hot. Heath McCoy and Cato Vincent have become my new favorites – I hope you enjoy them too.
While I was out and about looking for Dead Man’s Hole, I scoped out some other caves. I’ve been doing some research on where the Lost San Saba mine might be. In my books, one of the McCoy cousins – Philip – was arrested for murder and somehow it was tied into that lost mine. Cato is also searching for the mine, so I pretended to be her. Wouldn’t it be neat to find nuggets of gold? They’ve been found in these hills and everyone has looked for them from Jim Bowie – who died in the Alamo – to the novelist O’Henry to the owner of the Borden Ice Cream Company. Why not me?
I am still working on this book and I have to solve the mystery – so I may be scouting around in the hills a lot – hunting for gold, ghosts and hot cowboys.
Here is an excerpt from the book about Cato hunting the cave and below that are some pictures of Dead Man’s Hole – I hope you enjoy my excursion.
EXCERPT from HOW TO ROPE A MCCOY
There had been talk of lost silver and gold mines around the Enchanted Rock region ever since legendary Sam Maverick, signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, had purchased it in 1844. He was the man whose very name coined the term ‘maverick’ since he steadfastly refused to brand any of his cattle. His interest and belief in the riches of the region found its way into many books written at that time by speculators and adventurers such as Stephen F. Austin. Cato had read and digested every scrap of information she could find. Any mine she found would be stupendous, she didn’t care if there was silver in it or gold as long as she could tie it back to some of the history of the area, it would be a notable find.
As she stepped carefully, watching out for more snakes, she saw something glimmering in the dirt. What in the world? It couldn’t be this easy – most likely it was fool’s gold or a piece of buried quartz. Still….
Cato bent over to dig up the interesting rock and when she did – something nudged her in the back and she almost jumped out of her skin. “What?” She scrambled around trying to get away from the ghost of a spelunker or perhaps the irate deed holder of this amazing slice of Texas.
But when she managed to get a few feet away and looked around she was face to nose with a huge cow. “Gracious, you scared me!” Then she got a better look at her assailant and was horrified to find that it wasn’t a cow, it was a bull with horns spreading out at least three feet on either side of his head. “Go away!” she yelled.
Apparently she didn’t intimidate the bull as much as he did her, because instead of retreating – he advanced. “What do you want?” she asked in desperation. “I don’t have any hay or whatever it is that you eat!” She just hoped he didn’t have a taste for Louisiana girls who’d been sun-kissed by a hot Texas day.
“Get back you monster!” Cato tried to push on the animal’s nose, but he blew out his breath on her. She wished she could hear – did he grunt or did he growl? She couldn’t be sure.
“Great,” she whispered. “How am I going to get out of this?”
Cato didn’t have the answer to that question. All she could think about was running. The big bovine jerked his head up as if he was listening. And then to her horror, he began to paw the ground. “Oh, shit.”
Desperately she looked around for a way out. There was no way she could make it back to the jeep or she didn’t think she could. Surveying her surrounding, her gaze landed on a tree she could possibly climb. It wasn’t the perfect solution but maybe she could wait the behemoth out and he’d go away on his own and she could get back to exploring…nah that ship had probably sailed. She’d be too nervous to look around now. Not that she was giving up – oh, no. Cato fully intended to come back with reinforcements. Perhaps her boss, Bill Redford, would come back with her.
Now for the fancy moves. Taking a deep breath, she faked a move – left – right. When the bull turned his head one way, she broke the other way and took off like the devil himself were after her.
Meanwhile…
Heath let Tempest have his head. There was nothing better than riding a spirited horse…unless it was a spirited woman. “Whoa.” He pulled back on the reins as the stallion danced around.
Screech. Screech. Screech.
Heath stopped to let a small ground squirrel cross in front of him. And swear to God, the little creature stopped and turned around to fuss at him, raising up on its hind legs, front paw tilted up – just a chattering. He snorted. Damn little thing reminded him of Cato Vincent, except Cato was a billion times sexier. But she had moxie, just like this small rodent. “Yeah, yammer on. You’re full of prunes.”
At Heath’s chastisement, the ballsy little varmint vamoosed. He smiled. Things were looking up. Jaxson’s leg was healing nicely. Philip had finally succeeded in getting Holly McBride to admit they hadn’t ever dated so the prosecution’s theory that Smith was killed in a fit of jealousy wasn’t going to hold water. And – he had something to look forward to tonight. Jimmy was picking him up and they were going out on the town together. Being with Jimmy Dushku always made him feel better. Heath’s life was well-ordered, conservative and family oriented. His best friend was an international playboy, a multimillionaire and knew everybody worth knowing. Why Jimmy hung out with someone boring like him, he didn’t know.
“Shoo!”
Shoo?
“What the fuck?” Someone was nearby. On his land. A female someone. And it didn’t sound like either one of his sisters. In fact… Hell! He was imagining things. Just because he’d thought the squirrel reminded him of Cato, now he was hearing her everywhere. Shit. What did that mean?
“Giddy-up. “He headed up toward the foothills. Whoever it was, they’d better have a damn good explanation. McCoy’s didn’t take kindly to people just coming on to their land without good cause.
“Please go away. I’ll bring you back a treat. I promise.”
Damn. Surely not. Heath slowed Tempest down. If he could have got the horse to tiptoe, he would have. What met his eyes would have caused him to laugh out loud if wasn’t for the familiarity of that profile. T-Bone, Jaxson’s old pet bull had a woman treed. Yep, actually treed. And the closer he got, the prettier she got. Today her hair was pulled up on top of her head in a little whale spout pony tail that bobbed every time she bent over to negotiate with bull.
“You’re a pretty bull, but I’m scared of you. Please leave.”
Good Lord! He let out a long hard sigh. How in the hell had this happened? How had she found him? Well, there was only one way to find out. Edging Tempest forward, he yelled at T-Bone. “Get outta here, go find a cow to romance and leave this little heifer alone – she’s trouble!” He knew she couldn’t hear him but the sentiment stood.
Riding up close to her, he got between her and the bull. As soon as he came within her eyeshot she did something totally unexpected. “Heath! You’re here. Save me!” Holding her arms out, she launched herself at him and he caught her handily. Throwing her arms around his neck, she began to rain kisses all over his face. “I’m so glad to see you!”
Even though it was against every primal male impulse he possessed, Heath refrained from ravishing her. She was cradled in his arms, sitting sidesaddle, still clinging to him like the kudzu vines which were consuming southern climes at an alarming rate. Untangling himself from her embrace, he pushed her back far enough so she could see him speak. “Hold on a minute. Would you care to enlighten me as to why you are trespassing on my property?”
She was still patting him on the cheek like he was a favorite toy she often cuddled in bed. Damn, he had to control his thoughts.
It seemed like comprehension finally dawned. “You own Highlands?”
He nodded. “And of course you didn’t know this. Right?”
She didn’t need hearing to catch the sarcasm in his voice. “No, I did not.” She scooted back and almost fell off his horse, flailing around until he caught her to his hard chest.
“Don’t give me that, you tracked me down, followed me. You knew I’d be here.”
Irritation flashed through Cato. “Don’t flatter yourself. I’m here as part of my job.”
Heath sneered. “Job? What kind of job do you have that requires you to go on another person’s land and harass their livestock?”
Okay, enough was enough. She got right in his face. “I wasn’t the one doing the harassing. Your vicious bull attacked me!”
“That bull is a big pet, all he wanted was some loving.” All things needed loving, even him. Although he’d die before he admitted that reality to anyone, much less this annoying female.
“He has a strange way of showing it,” she countered. “And the job I have is with the Texas Cultural Center. I just left Dead Man’s Hole over near Marble Falls and I came this way looking for possible locations for the lost San Saba mine.”
If Cato thought her words would appease him, she was wrong. His face darkened like a thundercloud. “I’m sick of hearing about that stupid mine. My brother is up on murder charges and somehow it’s tied to that fairytale mine.”
What he said took Cato by surprise. “I’m sorry. I didn’t know.” She placed her hand on his chest. The realization that she was still sitting in his lap atop of a big horse hit her. “Maybe I should get down and go.”
“That sounds like a plan.” He began to ride toward the fence line.
“I can walk,” Cato protested.
She could, but he was enjoying holding her, not that he would ever admit it. “Why do you think the lost San Saba mine is located on my land?” Philip had the same idea but Heath wasn’t volunteering that information, not with the trial fast approaching.
“Do you really want to know?” She crossed her arms over her ample breasts, trying to maintain a sense of decorum while sitting in his lap – so close, yet so far. At his raised eyebrow, she relented. “I’ve studied dozens of sources from old diaries, to letters, to Spanish land deeds. This area seems like a prime candidate because of its proximity to Enchanted Rock and Sandy Creek.”
“And what would you do with the information if you found it?” Heath knew he had a problem with trust, he could admit that much.
“Nothing mercenary, I assure you. Our organization is interested in preserving the past and proving historical facts, not taking advantage of people or making a profit.”
“Pardon me if I have my doubts.” He didn’t mean to be disagreeable. Well yes, he did – but she turned him inside out. “You need to be careful, though. This is no place for a woman to be wandering around alone.”
Cato could sense a change in him. Bolstered by the more relaxed look on his face, she decided to go for it. “Would you go with me to check out the mine?”
“No, I will not!”
He shouted at her, she could tell by the vibrations of his breath on her face. “Okay. Well, could I bring my boss back to have a look, with your permission of course?”
Holding her was taking a toll on Heath. He remembered the kiss they shared, he remembered how good it felt to hold her while they danced. “I don’t know, I’ll think about it.” That was about as much of a concession as he could stand to make. Considering everything from his attraction to her – which could go nowhere – to Philip’s trial and their inauspicious introduction at the punch bowl, Heath thought he was being generous.
“You do that.” Courageously, she grinned up at him and rubbed the tip of her finger over his bottom lip. “You’re so handsome.”
“Stop that,” he swatted at her hand like it was a pesky fly. “Give me your boss’s name and number and I’ll give him a call when I make up my mind.” By this time, Tempest had carried them to the fence and they were right by her jeep. He held her hand while she slipped down from to the ground.
“Not necessary, Sundance.” The bit of distance between them made her brave. Gingerly, she climbed back through the fence, managing to do so unscathed this time. “You can let me know at the BBQ.”
Heath looked stunned. “My BBQ?”
“Yea,” she gave him a saucy look over her shoulder and put a bit of a swing to her step. “Yea, your family invited me. Isn’t that nice? I’ll be spending the weekend – with you.”

HA! Thanks for reading. Now for more photos.

abbyatdead'sholeabbysize hole

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Western Romance Rides Again in The Sons of Johnny Hastings by Maddie Taylor.

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Five tales of five illegitimate sons of a profligate gambler; these half-brothers learn of their father’s death, some learning for the first time that their brothers exist.  These rugged, handsome men, despite their unfortunate beginnings, grow to become strong, upstanding men (for the most part) in their own right, no thanks to their father. Still, from across the country they embark on a journey. Along with their sassy and sometimes mischievous brides, they travel to Denver for the reading of the will. For most, the will is the least of their concerns.  Instead, they have a burning curiosity to meet the other sons of Johnny Hastings.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00KTWQ4V8/spea06-20#customerReviews

http://www.amazon.com/Juniper-Bride-Sons-Johnny-Hastings-ebook/dp/B00KTW17LA/ref=la_B00DYE6Y54_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405291303&sr=1-4

http://www.amazon.com/Outlaws-Bride-Sons-Johnny-Hastings-ebook/dp/B00KTWD42K/ref=la_B008AS0FT0_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405291535&sr=1-5

http://www.amazon.com/Lawmans-Lessons-Sons-Johnny-Hastings-ebook/dp/B00KTNZHI8/ref=la_B0090QX142_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405291199&sr=1-2

http://www.amazon.com/Blacksmiths-Bride-Sons-Johnny-Hastings-ebook/dp/B00KSNGT86/ref=la_B002RCB0IK_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405291264&sr=1-4

http://www.amazon.com/Have-Scold-Sons-Johnny-Hastings-ebook/dp/B00KTQU5LO/ref=la_B00A97DY5C_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405291345&sr=1-2

I am a sucker for a good romance. If it’s a historical western with hot cowboys, stick a fork in me… I’ve always thought traveling back to the old west, would be a hoot and a half, don’t you think? Reminiscent of Gunsmoke and Bonanza (‘Memba Little Joe?), the era seems very romantic with the cowboys, the gallantry, the clothes (corsets, bustles and petticoats, oh my) and all the legends of the wild wild west.

The cowboy was greatly romanticized and fictionalized by old Hollywood. They rarely had the wealth, power and frankly the aroma to make a woman swoon. Imagine the smell after working all day with horses, cattle and no deodorant. UGH.

Despite the reality, Hollywood brought us John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and Jimmy Stewart, so women love cowboys and western romance. Since we are writers of fiction, I asked two of the authors why and what made up their image of a perfect cowboy.  

Patty DevlinRugged cowboys, who are toned and muscular, hands rough from working… I get excited just thinking about it. Why? Maybe because I picture them as no-nonsense, get their work done kind of men. Oh, and cowboy hats and arrogant winks… Sigh… Yeah. Then there is all that leather. The smell of oil from rubbing their saddles or tack down. Yummy, and I can imagine a big leather belt at his waist too. Dang, I’m getting side tracked. What was the question again? LOL The perfect cowboy? See above LOL! Add to it hair in need of a trim, a rough chin with a good day’s growth, and toned legs and thighs from sitting in a saddle all day long. Makes perhaps for a pleasant place to lay over and receive a good hard spanking. Then to sit on those leather chaps with my freshly spanked bare-bottom, omg I have to hurry off and finish this fantasy in a book or something…

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I asked the same question of Mary Wehr and asked her to describe her perfect cowboy.

Mary: In movies, ranchers and cowboys are usually portrayed as rugged, sexy men more inclined to administer a good old-fashioned spanking when warranted. With a historical western romance, a reader is almost guaranteed a hero who is firm and commanding, protective and caring. Maybe that’s why cowboys are so popular. I could be wrong, but I do know when I want to read a romance with a sassy, spunky heroine and a stern hero, I search for a western. I know I’m bound to find what I want. Women have come a long way since the 1800’s and that’s a good thing, but sometimes it’s nice to fantasize about being thought only as ‘his woman’. A cowboy does that for me.

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Mm… rugged cowboys sound yummy! But in actuality, the old west was harsh and very rustic, which convinces me when I think of it, that I was definitely born in the right era. I do often wonder if swept back in time, what modern conveniences I would have missed most.  

All of our stories are set in 1872, which means no TP, A/C, birth control, automobile, cell phone (or any phone for that matter- it wasn’t invented yet).  Here is my short list and why…

#1 for me, OMG it has to be birth control. I have two sons. All my hubby had to do was look at me and I was knocked up. I would have been one of those women who had a dozen or died in childbirth (my last child being 11 lbs. 4 oz., yeah, that was a C-section).

#2 Toilet paper. Having gone fishing with my hubby and hiking with my hubby, the leaf experience does not do it for me. A man has it easy, just drop trow and whiz away, we girls have a little more hygienic practices to attend to.

#3 A/C, I live in the southeast and it gets freakin’ hot down here. Give me artificial air any day, especially when I’m trying to sleep.

#4 A car, I do not do horses… Need I say more?

#5 Take my cell phone… please! My laptop and internet are a different story, however.

 maddie 4

Patricia Green also weighed in and ranked toilet paper as her top pick. Of those choices, I’d miss TP the most, simply because it’s used more often than the other choices, so I would be frequently reminded of what I was missing. And, besides, pages from the Sears & Roebuck catalogue must have been inky. Second, A/C, because with the clothing styles of the time, it would be stifling hot in the summertime and the smell of so many hot and sweaty people must have been overwhelming.

If I could be transported back in time, I think the thing I would like the most would be the formal manners of the tiem. I’d like to be called “Miss” or “Mrs.” Regularly and until I gavepermission ohewise and took a step toward a deeper friendship. It’s a signal we don’t have anymore and I think we’ve lost something in being so free with people’s names. The thing I would like the least would be the way clothes were washed. I can’t imagine using lye soap on a washboard.

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I wholeheartedly agree, I like my washing machine and adore the wrinkle guard on my dryer. LOL   Thank you for allowing my romantic cowboy meanderings today, but since time is short and space is limited, let’s get down to the hot and juicy with an excerpt from one of the five novels from The Sons of Johnny Hastings, The Outlaw’s Bride by Renee Rose.

Unjustly accused of murder, Sam Pride is on the run and his luck worsens when he tangles with the Curly James gang. The only bright spot is the little spitfire rancher who steals his heart with her courage and spunk. When the two set off together for Cheyenne and then Denver, sparks fly and their magnetic connection grows.

Still, Mabelle is not sure if Sam will commit and even if he does, can he clear his name before a bounty hunter shoots him or brings him in?

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Excerpt:

Padding softly to the living room, she blinked in the darkness and located his large frame stretched out on the floor. She listened to the sound of his breath, deepened in sleep. Kneeling beside him, she grasped one of the guns at his side and began to slowly draw it out of the holster.

In a flash, he sat up, gun drawn and pointing in her face.

She gave a little scream of surprise, falling back. “Don’t shoot!” she begged, realizing how foolish her plan had been.

He stood up, lifting her to her feet with a firm grip on her arm. “What did you think you were doing?” he demanded, his voice icy. “You want the bounty on my head, too?”

“No,” she protested, and tried to step back, but he held her fast.

“Seven fifty is not enough for you? You want it all? Fine,” he said, turning his pistol around and handing it to her by the handle. “Go ahead and take it.”

She shook her head. “No, I—”

“Take it.”

She grasped the gun to appease him, her hands shaking so badly it wobbled in her grip.

“Go on, shoot me. I won’t draw on you. Here, take both my guns,” he said, lifting his arm to give her access to the other gun at his hip.

She shook her head. “That’s not—”

“Shoot me, Mabelle. It is not hard. You just pull the trigger and it’s done. Go on.”

Her chin trembled, the tears coming close to expulsion. “No!” she said.

He snatched the gun back with a look of disgust and holstered it. “It is hard to take a life, isn’t it?”

“I wasn’t going to—”

“Go and get me a wooden spoon.”

She obeyed without thinking, relieved to be released from his dark gaze, but when she reached the wash tub and grasped the spoon, she stopped, guessing his intentions for it.

She heard the scrape of a chair and turned to see him settling in it, looking at her expectantly.

“You could light a lamp, too, but I don’t mind spanking you in the dark.”

“You are not spanking me!” she insisted, her voice shrill.

He said nothing, simply looked at her from across the dark room.

Her heart thundered in her chest. She realized she had little choice but to accept his punishment. Fighting him would be fruitless, and only make him angrier. He thought she meant to kill him and he intended to exact retribution.

Well, if his retribution for murder was a spanking with a wooden spoon, she could take it. She drew her shoulders back and marched over to stand before him, offering the spoon.

“Thank you, Mabelle,” he said, his voice even. “Do you want to light the lamp?”

Did she want him to have a brighter view of her backside splayed across his knees? Hell, no.

“No,” she mumbled, her glower focusing on the collar of his shirt.

“No, sir,” he corrected.


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Gem’s July Contest–Win a Kindle Paperwhite

Hey, everyone! Yes, you read the blog title right. I’m giving away a Kindle Paperwhite (and other stuff) in my July Contest. I know many of you have already, liked, voted, subscribed, friended, and tweeted me…but you can still enter. :D And if you haven’t entered one of my contests before, it’s pretty darned easy. Check out the link below.


Win a Kindle Paperwhite from Gem Sivad

If you don’t see Rafflecopter below, you can enter here.

Click to Enter!


 Good luck everyone!

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P.S.  Check out the $.99 sale going on over at the Cowboy Candy Blog…

Your One Stop Cowboy Shoppe here

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Cowboys and wine-who’d a thunk it

Leave me a comment. Someone will get a $10 GC to Amazon

I live in a very unique area of Texas called the Hill Country. Probably because we have a lot of hill. (Pause for loud laughter). The landscape is dotted with wildflowers and linking the small towns are ranches of every size and type. Everything from huge cattle ranches to ranches that breed ad train horses to some great dude ranches. About 50 miles south of Fredericksburg, in Bandera, dude ranches have been operating since 1920. The self-proclaimed “Cowboy Capital of the World” is home to seven dude ranches, where guests can take trail rides and eat cowboyfare. And a lot of people who don’t own ranches still have horses and it’s very common to see them riding along the side of a two-lane highway or even down the road the runs past my little rural community. So yeah, Stetson and boots are pretty much the common dress.

Longmire

Note: Who wouldn’t like to drink wine with Longmire?

But the Hill Country offers another unique industry–­wineries. There are twenty-two wineries in the Hill Country, seven around Fredericksburg alone, with two more slated to open soon. Texas is now the nation’s fifth largest wine-producing state.A hard morning on horseback can be followed by an afternoon of wine and cheese. And nobody minds a bit.

The Hill Country doesn’t just sit culturally at the intersection of cowboy and urbane; it sits there geographically, too. Most of the region’s attractions are within an hour’s drive of Austin, the state’s hipster capital, and San Antonio, home of the Alamo. And in a state where a drive between cities can be derriere-numbingly long, the Hill Country provides easy stops in a short distance.

PS. Sam Elliott’s voice makes me horny but don’t tell anyone. Sam and a bottle of wine make my night.

 

Sam Elliott

So don’t be entirely surprised if that cowboy you saw riding herd this morning decides to wet his whistle late in the day with a glass of chardonnay or sauvignon blanc.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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