Welcome to My Sexy Saturday!
This week’s theme is My Sexy Stranger.
This stranger has been vouched for. Maggie Anderson’s insurance broker, an old family friend, takes a pretty dim view of her scheme to raise race horses on the family farm she’s inherited, but he doesn’t want to see her fail. He refers her to a trainer who’s down on his luck after being unfairly accused in a racetrack scandal.
Readers of Riders Up: Book One can vouch for Ed Harrington, too, though they probably didn’t like him in Cassie’s Hope. Cocky and annoying, he vied with Clint for Cassie’s affections, and was briefly under suspicion for being the one who drugged her horse, though cleared in the end. But he’s fallen on hard times since then, and Maggie finds him in a Des Moines flophouse. In spite of her misgivings, she offers him a job, but she doesn’t expect to ever see him again.
Hang onto the land – but at what cost? Feisty widow hires ace racehorse trainer to salvage her family’s heritage. Can they survive escalating threats to life and limb?
“Mom. Mom!” shouted the smallish tow-headed boy dashing up the porch steps.
“What is it, Johnny? You’d think the devil was chasing you.” She’d never understand why boys always rushed around so.
Johnny skidded to a halt before her while the screen door banged loudly behind him.
“Somebody’s coming, Mom.”
“Don’t know. The truck ain’t familiar,” the boy drawled.
“Isn’t,” both mother and sister corrected.
Johnny rolled his eyes. “There he comes now.”
Everyone on the porch looked toward the driveway as an old faded green pick-up lumbered toward the gravel patch where Maggie’s car and truck were parked. She didn’t recognize the man getting out of the truck.
The man stood tall in western boots, clean Levis, and a white dress shirt, with an ancient feed mill cap dipped low over his eyes.
Unable to make out his features clearly, Maggie rose to welcome the stranger.
As he rapped on the screen door, he said dryly, “Afternoon, Mrs. Anderson. It took a while for me and Mabel to figure out your directions.” With those few words, Ed Harrington doffed his cap. A hint of a smile tugged at his mouth. His gray eyes remained cool and guarded.
Maggie’s mouth fell wide open and her heart skipped a beat or two. He was standing there like an apparition. Was this really the malnourished man she’d last seen stumbling down a Des Moines sidewalk?
During an oppressive Iowa summer of drought and farm foreclosures, widowed Maggie Anderson makes a bold decision: She’ll merge her love of horses and her family’s three hundred and twenty acres into a horse farm and try her hand at nearby Prairie Meadows Race Track, where racing purses have just been augmented by the recently added casino gambling.
Down on his luck after being falsely accused in a racing scandal and banned from training, former Arlington Race Track trainer Ed Harrington has skulked home to Des Moines to drown his sorrows and wait for the dust to clear. He’s unprepared for the piercing robin’s-egg-blue eyes of pint-sized Maggie Anderson, who finds him at a flophouse and offers him a job. Can he pull himself together and meet the challenge?
As the two forge a tumultuous working partnership, they soon discover someone is out to get Maggie’s farm and will stop at almost nothing to force her off the land. Can they find and stop the culprit before someone is killed? Can they survive the far greater danger unleashed by the raw passion simmering just beneath the surface of their relationship?
“Heartfelt with mystery and hope…made me cry.” Donna H., Amazon, Five Stars
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Click to travel to the other Sexy Saturday excerpts!
Week 2 of the MFRW year-long blog challenge! Click on the list at the bottom to travel to all participants. This week’s theme? How my family supports my writing.
None of us could do what we do without support, and when family is on our side, we thrive – we can take on the world. For starters, the most important family member in my life – my husband – is my co-author, so we face the world with a solid foundation.
We got a good head start in the families we grew up in. Our parents are gone, but all four of them encouraged creativity and supported unconventional choices, however ill-advised some of those choices might have seemed at the time.
Hubs’ mother was an avid romance reader, especially during the nine years she was a widow after his dad died. As her eyesight worsened, we’d hit our local used book store for a half-dozen large-print romance books every three weeks before making the five hour drive to check in on her for the weekend. She did read (and liked) a couple of our early romantic suspense stories, although she confessed she “skipped over” the sex parts. She would probably not have approved of the erotic direction our writing later took.
Both my parents, on the other hand, probably would have, and I think my dad would even admit to some envy, were he still here. His older sister – my aunt – worked for the Kinsey Institute, so no topic was off limits when she was around. She and he are probably doing fist pumps as they watch us navigate the publishing world with our sexy stories. My mother would probably have kept her approval more hidden (she disapproved of my aunt). But when it came time for me to clean out their last apartment, on the bookshelf hidden behind the clothes in her closet I found a well-read copy of the Kama Sutra, so I know her heart would have been on our side.
We carry their support with us, always.
In anticipation of our upcoming romantic suspense release this March, here’s another snippet from our romantic suspense, The Heist. Kara’s attending a conference in Chicago…
A heist? A murder? It’s villain’s choice.
“I’m afraid I already have a dinner commitment. I’m on a conference committee,” Kara explained. “If you come by my hotel around nine o’clock, you could help tuck me in for the night.”
“I see,” Ted responded. “And do I get to stay an hour, or will you require more of my services than that?”
“No need to get pissy about it,” she snapped. “We can always wait until the next night if you prefer. I don’t have any dinner plans then. As for time limits—you can stay the night if you want. We might even have time for breakfast in bed. But I have to be at a meeting by eight thirty. Does any of this work for you?”
“I’ll make it work. I’m a little surprised I get to stay the night.”
“By the time I’m done with you, I doubt you’ll have the strength to crawl out of the hotel. And that way we get to enjoy waking each other up in the morning.”
“Maybe you won’t want to be around me early in the morning. I’m told I can be a bear.”
“Maybe I’m better at waking up a man than your other women are.”
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A special-order art theft? Tedious, but seamless – until small town museum director Kara Daniels calls in the experts. Furious her favorite trio of priceless impressionist paintings has been stolen from its traveling exhibit on her watch, Kara is determined to save not only the paintings, but her future in the art world. She’ll stop at nothing to entrap the thief.
Ted Springs knows the underbelly of the criminal world a little closer than he might like—but he’s turned it to good advantage, first as a police officer, and now as detective for the Upper Midwest Arts Council. His job? To guarantee the security of the valuable paintings in the Council’s traveling exhibits.
Heat sizzles when Ted and Kara collide—can they work together, before it’s too late?
Be sure to check out the other teases at the links below: