Saturday, March 31, 2012

EXCERPT of Montana Wildfire, by Rebecca Sinclair, AVAILABLE NOW!
Welcome to another Sweet Saturday Sample!
Enjoy & have a great weekend!  Reb

~ Montana Wildfire ~
Montana Wildfire by Rebecca Sincliar: Available Now!
© 1991, 2011 by Rebecca Sinclair
Published by: ePublishingWorks! ~ ISBN: 978-0821736173
Cover by Kim Killion @

"What a book! It was the best 99¢ I've spent in a long time! It's full of explicit sensual desire and heart pumping adventure that will definitely provoke your emotions. I highly recommend this book!"
 — a reader @

~ Montana Wildfire ~
historical western

A shiver of heat splashed through Amanda when the stranger's gaze raked the partially dried hair scattered around her face and shoulders. His attention dipped, lazily taking in the water-darkened bodice of her cream-colored shirtwaist and the dark rose skirt that clung to her hips like a clammy second skin. She'd heard rumors of men who could strip a woman bare with one smoldering glance, but she'd never met one who would dare. Until now.
As the man's attention poured over her, Amanda had the unpleasant feeling he could see right through the saturated barrier of cloth. A warm, tight sensation curled in the pit of her stomach: unfamiliar, alarming. She tipped her chin up defensively. Crossing her arms over her chest, she cut his lewd investigation short. His gaze took its sweet time lifting to hers.
His grey eyes shimmered in the mid-morning sunlight, telling her it was far too late for modesty. His appreciative expression said something else again; that he'd already decided what "type" of lady she was... and that he could tolerate her sort with little trouble.

"I suppose you'll be wanting my help now, ma'am?" The way his tongue wrapped around the word "ma'am" sent an odd, warm-cold tremor down Amanda's spine. Somehow, he made it sound less like a title and more like a sensual endearment.

"If it wouldn't be too much trouble," she replied stiffly, and thought, why not? Her left leg throbbed from supporting her idle weight for so long. She was wet and chilled to the bone. She knew if she didn't allow this man to help her, she might never get out of this frigid water.

He nodded and turned his attention to Roger. "Go find some sticks and get a fire started. Don't skimp; I want it blazing. The lady's going to need all the heat she can get once she's out of there. And get some blankets, too. All you can spare. There's a couple rolled and tied on my horse. Use them."

Roger's golden brows slashed high, disappearing beneath the curls that kissed his forehead. He glanced up at the stranger as though the man had lost all grip on reality.

"You want me to do what?"
"Get a fire started," the man gritted impatiently, even as he sank to the ground and began yanking off his knee-high moccasins.
"What the hell are you waiting for, kid? I want that fire started, and I want it started now!"
It must have been the ring of authority in the man's voice, Amanda decided. Either that, or the veiled threat glistening in his eyes. Whatever the reason, Roger spun on his heel and sprinted into the woods with unheard-of speed.
"Looks like it's just you and me, princess," the man said as, lithely pushing to his feet, he took a step toward the river. His attention rose from the spot where the water lapped at her hips. His gaze ascended—slowly, hotly—over her breasts, her shoulders, her chin, and lips.
Finally, he locked onto her fear-widened eyes. In that instant, Amanda knew why Roger had run. If her foot wasn't stuck, she would do the same thing. The savage glint in the man's eyes, coupled with his insolent perusal, had a terrifying affect on her.

"You have a name?" His question was instantly followed by a loud splash. He'd just taken his first swaggering stride into the icy river.
"O-of course." Closing her eyes, Amanda stifled a groan in the back of her throat. Her voice deserted her. Not for all the money in the world could she have forced her eyes open at that moment, forced herself to watch as that dangerous-looking man stalked toward her like a hungry wolf hunting down its trapped, defenseless prey.
You going to tell me what it is?"
His voice was closer. Amanda thought that reason enough not to answer him. That, and the feel of the water being disturbed around her. The icy current lapped at her stomach. She rolled her lips inward and ordered herself not to shiver. It wouldn't do for this man to think her tremors were caused by his nearness and not the water's numbing coldness. And he was near. She could sense it, feel it.
"Okay, princess, let me put it another way. You want to get out of this river any time soon?"
Amanda's eyes snapped open. A split second too late, she realized it for the mistake it was. The stranger was standing close. Too close. The span of his shoulders and chest cast a chilly shadow over her, blotting out the warmth of the late morning sun, blotting out everything.
The water was cold, but it would have needed to be covered with a thick sheet of ice to counterbalance the intense male heat his lean body radiated. The earthy, leather-and-spice smell of him surrounded her, seeped through her, seeped into her. The scent warmed her blood, thawing what Amanda had begun to think would be an everlasting chill.
She didn't feel chilled right now. Just the opposite; she'd never felt so hot in her life! The man angled his head to look down at her, and Amanda saw that he'd removed his hat. His straight black hair scattered flatteringly around his face.
The breeze tossed the inky strands around his shoulders. Her gaze picked out a thin, tight braid, no thicker than her pinkie, woven into the underside of his hair, just behind his left ear. She trailed the braid down to a small brown feather, anchored by a leather thong tied to the end of it. On another man, that braid would have looked more than odd; it would have looked feminine. She wondered why it didn't work that way on him.
"Well, what's it going to be, princess?" he asked, his warm breath puffing over her cheeks.
"The way I see it, you've only got two choices. Either you stand there gawking at me all day, or you answer my question so I can dig you out. I'd say it's your call."
Question? she thought dazedly. Had he asked her a question? Maybe. She couldn't remember. It was hard to remember her name with him standing so close. Amanda told herself her lengthy stay in the water had warped her mind as well as her fingertips, but she wasn't convinced.

No, more likely it was seeing the man's eyes up close that robbed her of the will to speak... as well as a good deal of breath! His eyes weren't grey, as she'd first thought, but a rich, smoky silver. The intensity of his gaze was enhanced by a fringe of thick, sooty lashes, and emphasized by his deep copper skin.

"Guess I was wrong. Looks like you don't want out after all," he said as, tearing his gaze from hers, he pivoted and began wading back the way he'd come. Only after his body heat—the smell of him, the confusion of him—had been removed, did Amanda shake herself to her senses. By that time he was climbing lithely onto the grassy riverbank.

 "Wait, Mr....!" He didn't turn around.

"Un-uh. That was my question, princess. And until you answer it, you're staying put."

Amanda blinked hard. That was it? All he wanted was for her to tell him her name and then he'd help her out? That seemed reasonable enough. No, it wasn't reasonable at all! A gentleman would never leave a lady stranded in the middle of frigid water merely because she hadn't supplied her name the second he'd snapped his fingers and demanded it.

Then again... Her gaze narrowed on his back, on the way the tough denim pants clung wetly to his heavily muscled thighs and calves. She reassessed. This was definitely no gentleman. Her deduction had nothing to do with his native heritage. It had everything to do with the way he dressed—truly, those pants were indecent!—and the way he walked—make that swaggered. His every move screamed arrogance and authority.

Which would have been fine, were it an unintentional, spontaneous thing. It wasn't. Amanda had a gut-feeling this man knew exactly what kind of cocky, insolent impression he made on people, and that he played it to the hilt. When he turned his head and regarded her from over one shoulder, Amanda knew she was right. She also had an uneasy feeling that he knew what she was thinking.

 "Change your mind yet?" As he spoke, he sat down in the grass and reached for his moccasins, although he made no move to tug them on. Yet. The enormity of what he was doing hit Amanda like a slap. She glared at him. "You aren't really going to leave me here, are you? Just because I wouldn't tell you my name?"

He tipped his head to one side. A lock of black hair fell forward on his brow when he shrugged.

"What do you think?"

 "I don't think you'd dare."

"Then you don't know me very well."

Her chin tipped haughtily. "I don't know you at all."

"We could do something about that."

Was it possible for a grin to be devastating yet emotionless at the same time? Amanda wouldn't have thought so—until she saw the proof of it with her own eyes. Her heart flipped over in her chest, its tempo hammering in her ears. Her trembling fingers closed around the water near her hips in empty fists.

"That wasn't very nice," she snapped, and stifled a groan when his grin only broadened.

 The smile, she noted, didn't reach his eyes. They remained narrow and frosty.

"I'm not a very nice person," he said.

"Ask anyone, they'll tell you."

As though to prove it, he started tugging on his moccasins. When he was done, he pushed to his feet. In the same fluid movement he swiped up his hat and settled it atop his head. He pinched the low-riding brim between his index finger and thumb, nodded to her in mock politeness, then turned and walked toward the trees.

Amanda blinked hard. Dear God, the man really was going to desert her. The rotten bastard! She didn't realize she'd said the words aloud until she saw him stop. His shoulders squared. His back stiffened. Even from this distance, she could see tension pull the muscles in his back, shoulders, and arms taut.

Come again, princess?"

Since it was too late to deny it—the damage was already done—Amanda sucked in a deep breath and repeated herself, loudly, and clearly enough so he would have no doubt as to what she'd just called him. "Goddamn. That's what I thought you said."

He sucked in a sigh and released it in a slow hiss. Then he shook his head—regretfully? she doubted it—and plucked off the hat. With a flick of his wrist, he sent it hurling to the grass.

"Guess I'm going have to fetch you out of there after all."

There was something in his tone—too calm, too leashed—that sent a shiver down her spine. Amanda couldn't pinpoint the underlying emotion he'd stressed, and, as she watched him again tug off the deerskin moccasins, she stopped trying.

Before she knew it, he was trudging through the water toward her. Forcing herself not to shiver in dread took all her concentration. Wondering what had made him change his mind, she glanced up. He glanced down.

Silver and green warred, and in that instant Amanda knew exactly why he'd decided to free her. His eyes were narrowed to steely slits. His jaw was bunched hard, and a muscle ticked beneath the high copper plane of his cheekbone. As she watched, his lips thinned into a tight, uncompromising line. Calling him a bastard had hit a sore spot with him. The man was quietly furious.

Worse—much, much worse—all that tightly leashed anger was directed at her. The knowledge seemed a good enough reason for Amanda to flinch when he stopped so close his chest threatened to graze the very tips of her breasts. "I-I'll tell you my name," she offered, and winced when her voice squeaked.

"Don't bother. Where are you stuck?"

Swallowing hard, she fixed her gaze on one of the flat metal buttons trailing down his shirt. As for the tight bands of muscle rippling beneath the dark blue cloth... well, she refused to notice them at all. "Amanda Lennox. That's my name."

"That's dandy. I repeat: Where are you stuck?" His hand came out of nowhere. His index finger hooked under her chin, dragging her gaze up. His warm, sweet breath blasted over her face when he said, "Better give some thought to answering me this time, princess. You've got exactly ten seconds to tell me what's going on under this water. After that, my hands start doing some exploring of their own."

Buy Now at Amazon (Kindle):


Buy Now at Barnes & Noble (Nook):


(5 Stars)
"[Montana Wildfire] was enthralling. I couldn't put it down! This is one steamy romance you will want to read again, and again, and again!!!
(5 Stars)
@ Barnes &
"This book is amazing and I was riveted! Well written and definitely filled with some smokin' passion!
Praise for California Caress:

“My first Rebecca Sinclair novel but definitely NOT my last. Wowee was this ever a good read! Ms. Sinclair takes her readers on a ride of laughs, heartache, betrayal, and intense passion. Her characters are finely chiseled and compliment her captivating story line.” 

Praise for Perfect Strangers:
“Historical romance at its very best, PERFECT STRANGERS delighted this reader with its proud heroine and fabulous hero. Their rocky start takes them on a conflict-filled journey, but, in the end, their love for one another cannot and will not be denied.”    
♩♫ Happy Birthday, Dear Reeeeb! ♩♫
Reb's birthday is rolling around in April. You know what that means: she wants YOU to help her celebrate — all month long! How? Simple. She's throwing a contest, of course! Up for grabs is one very nice coffee/tea/coca gift tower, exclusively from...
<May I have a drumroll, please?>
< ... >
Oh, yeah — it just doesn't get any better, baby!
Details on how to enter will (very soon!) be posted on this blog, Facebook, G+, Goodreads, Twitter (and Pinterest if we can figure out a way <g>). So check one of these, or check all of them for even more chances to win!

♩♫ And many mooooore! ♩♫

Saturday, March 24, 2012

For all of you Sweet Saturday Samplers out there...
Enjoy & have a great day!  ~ Reb

California Caress by Rebecca Sinclair, Available Now!
© 1989, 2011 by Rebecca Sinclair

Published by: ePublishingWorks! ~ ASIN: B005AO9L9C

Cover by: Kim Killion @

California Caress was] my first Rebecca Sinclair novel but definitely NOT my last. Wowee was this ever a good read! Ms. Sinclair takes her readers on a ride of laughs, heartache, betrayal, and intense passion. Her characters are finely chiseled and compliment her captivating story line."
  Romancing the Book

~ California Caress ~

Thirsty Gulch, California 1851

“You rat,” she hissed, her lips thinning into a hard white line. “You knew he wouldn’t stop, didn’t you?” She paused, taking a deep gulp of air. “Of course you knew. That’s why you didn’t stop me from making a total idiot out of myself, isn’t it? Because you knew he wouldn’t care enough about what was happening in here to even think about offering help.”

“Don’t be a fool,” he scolded, his tone patronizingly dry. “Of course I knew he wouldn’t stop. Yelling and screaming goes on around here night and day. Nobody thinks a thing of it. Where are you going?” To his surprise the woman gathered the cloak tightly around her and marched with rigid determination toward the single window behind his chair.

“As far away from you as I can get,” she informed him briskly as she gave a push to the smeared bottom pane of glass. Her heard skipped as beat as the wooden frame stuck, then slid high. Unfortunately, it slipped down just as easily, but that minor hindrance could be worked around. She was feeling braver, more confident with the cool night air wafting around her, clearing her senses. Her headache receded to a dull throb.

“We’re on the second story,” he informed her, his tone dry and unemotional. From the sound of his voice, he hadn’t bothered to get up; a fact that hardly surprised her. “It’s quite a fall.”

“Not if I land on that drunk,” she said as she peeked out the window and saw the sprawled from of a man lying face first in the dirt. She wasn’t sure, but she would have sworn it was the same one who had almost smacked her in the face with the swinging bar door.

By the time Hope felt the viselike grip wrap around her upper arm, she had already managed to swing both legs out the window and was perched on the sill. She used one hand to prop up the frame above her head while the other steadied her precarious balance. The rose-colored skirt was hoisted well above her knees, exposing more than a proper amount of creamy calves and delicately turned ankles. The folds of her cloak, still inside the room, floated down the wall and draped over the crudely planed floor.

“You’re not going anywhere, young lady,” the man growled as a hand wrapped around her other arm. It was all she could do to keep the window from falling on her legs as she was forcefully dragged back inside.

As her back came up hard against his chest, she suddenly prayed Luke would disobey her as he always did and come looking for her, fast. The sight of her gigantic brother would certainly knock that overly inflated ego down a peg or two, something this man sorely needed.

“Let go of me this instant, you idiot,” she demanded, trying to twist away from his grasp. She might as well have been heaving herself against a brick wall for all the good it did her.

In a repeat performance of what she had done to Luke, Hope pulled back her foot and kicked for all she was worth. Apparently she was worth more than she thought, especially if the man’s grunt of pain was anything to judge by.

“Stop it,” he ordered as the heel of her boot collided with his shin yet again.

“Not until you let me go,” she snapped, slammer her heel down on his toe. Unfortunately, his boots made sure the blow did little damage. She resorted to kicking again.

This time the man waited until her foot was drawn back and ready to strike, the unexpectedly let her go. Hope, unprepared for the sudden release, tumbled backwards, her bottom meeting the hardwood floor in a bone-jarring collision. The force of her momentum thrust her backward, her legs pinned by the twisting skirt and cloak. It was sheer luck that she was able to reach out in time to stop her head from hitting the floor.

So much for fighting fair! She thought as she staggered to her feet and faced her opponent. Expecting a man the size of the rest of the prospectors of Thirst Gulch, it was not a pleasant surprise to see that this one towered over her by almost a full head. Her courage floundered.

“Are you done?” he asked bitterly. Like a dancer, he balanced his weight on one foot while the other rubbed against his sore shin. He wasn’t taking the chance of bending to inspect the damage, she noted, and surmised the reason as a rightful mistrust of what she might do next.

“Are you going to let me out of here?” she countered with an indignant toss of her head. A mistake, that, as her pounding temples were quick to inform her.

The gesture made the chestnut curls ripple over her shoulders, swaying freely at the small taper of her waist. In the scuffle, her cloak had parted, the front pleats working their way to the back so the coarse wool now flowed freely over her shoulders. The parting served only to draw attention to the low-scooped neckline of her dress.

Noticing where the man’s attention lay, she quickly flipped the cloak into place, nestling into its folds as though she hadn’t so much as a stitch on beneath. Indeed from the way those sea-green eyes had ravished her exposed flesh, she might as well not have. There were rumors of the way some men could look at a woman as though undressing her with their eyes, but never had she experienced the sensation—until now.

Planting balled fists on her hips, she valiantly gathered what was left of her courage and proudly returned his glare, measure for angry measure. “I demand you let me out of here.”

One golden brow arched, and she would have sworn she saw a fleeting trace of amusement. “You demand? You demand?” The chuckle that filled the room was brief and filled with sarcasm. “You are hardly in a position to demand anything, sunshine. And I’m not your jailer. If you want to leave, leave.” The tanned brow was much too innocently smooth for Hope’s liking as he cut a mock bow and swept the interior of the room with a large palm. A crooked smile twisted his lips. “If you can.”

Instantly, she turned back to the window, but the voice behind her stopped her cold before the pane was halfway up.

“But not that way.”

She dropped the heavy casing as though it had just burst into flames. The thing crashed down onto the sill, the echo of splintering wood loud against the backdrop of piano music drifting up from downstairs.

Hope whirled on him. Not since her mother died could she remember being so angry. Her hands clenched and unclenched at her sides, itching to reach out and slap his arrogant face, and at the same time not daring to do so.

Taking a deep breath, she took hold of her emotions and forced her expression into simpering sweetness. “Whah, mistah, ah don’t know why yer so suspicious of a little ol’ gal like me.” The man turned slowly around and regarded Hope as though she’d just sprouted another head. She batted her dark lashes and smiled coyly. “Ah assure you, sir, ah mean ya no harm.”

The trace of a grin tugged at sensuous lips as his assessing gaze raked her full length, twice. “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

“Rotten Yankee,” she muttered under her breath. Crossing her arms over her chest, she tapped out an aggravated rhythm with her toe. “How the hell do you expect me to leave when you’ve bolted the door and won’t let me out through the window?”

“Locked the door,” he corrected, slipping his hand into the front pocket of his trousers and extracting a key. He swung it teasingly beneath her nose. “Ah don’t know where y’all are from,” he said with a heavily satirical, and dreadfully bad, southern accent, “but ‘round here, we’all call ‘em locks.”

She made a grab for the key but his lightning-quick reflexes easily snatched it away. She watched glumly as he tucked it back in his pocket, a cocky smile curling his lips.

“As for leaving,” he shrugged. “You got in here all by yourself—you can leave the same way.”

“The door wasn’t locked when I came in,” she reminded him, her gaze spitting fire as it settled on his smug countenance.

“It is now,” he countered, just as coldly. “You’re a smart girl. Figure it out.”

If she thought it would have done any good, Hope would have lunged for his throat the second he turned his back on her and returned to his chair. There was nothing hurried in the way he lifted his feet and crossed his ankles atop the ivory comforter. Was his position supposed to be a mockery of her first true look at him, she wondered? Probably. The only difference was, where before his arms had rested on the wooded armrests, they were now crossed over the sinewy chest. From his viewpoint, she had ample opportunity to scrutinize each well-defined muscle that bulged from shoulder to elbow. The sight did nothing to bolster her rapidly dwindling confidence.

All right, she thought with a sigh of annoyance. If playing the rat’s silly little game was what it took to get her out of this damn room, then fine, she would play it. But she would settle for nothing less than winning.

The lines were drawn, the battlefield mapped. If she wanted to leave, she was going to have to do it alone. No help would be offered from her stone-faced adversary.

The only two options that presented themselves were the obvious: the door and the window. The latter was forbidden, while the former was locked—not bolted, locked. That, however, was not an insurmountable obstacle. Every lock had a key, and this one’s just happened to rest in a certain pocket. With the man sitting in that particular position, lifting the key off of him without his being aware of what she was doing was impossible, no doubt the reason he had chosen it.

Perhaps if she tried reasoning with him, or tried desperately pleading her case? No, she’d tried that already and it hadn’t worked. The fool hadn’t believed a word she’d said.

She scowled. Wait a minute. Hadn’t her mother once told her that even the hardest of hearts could be swayed by the sight of a woman’s tears? Yes, she had. But then, her mother had never met this particular man. A harder heart Hope doubted she’d find. Sighing, she closed her eyes and sent up a silent prayer. For once, please God, let Mother be right about something!

She decided to give the man one more chance before trying anything so desperate.

“Sure you won’t change your mind and unlock the door?” she asked sweetly as the man leaned over and plucked up his bottle of gin.


Okay, the matter was settled. Crying it was. Now, how did one go about forcing oneself into a fit of tears? Crying was not a weakness she liked to see displayed, in herself or others. Even now, it was hard to recall the last time she had allowed herself to indulge in self-pity of any kind. Or was it?

The memory came on her slowly, like the curling vapors of an early morning mist rolling over the water and onto the coast. Slowly, she walked over to the window and leaned against the wooden frame, the man behind her completely superseded by the memories clouding her mind.

They were unclear, fuzzy, fragmented in no discernible order. There was dark, then light. The face of her father, strained with fear as she had never seen it before. She saw her brother through the grimy glass, ten years old and fighting to rub the sleep from his eyes. There was smoke, everywhere there was smoke. She could smell the cloying odor now as surely as if it floated in the air. And pain. Gasping aloud, Hope flinched. Never would she forget the searing pain.

She hugged her arms tightly around her stomach. The tears streaming down her cheeks, the sobs shaking her body, were as genuine as the horrid piano music drifting up through the cracks in the floorboards.

The chair scraped against the floor. Muffled footsteps slowly approached from behind. She ignored the sounds as she sniffed and wiped her nose on her sleeve. The large hand that suddenly draped over her shoulder was not so easily ignored. The warmth of his palm penetrated the wool of her cloak and melted through the rosy muslin gown. It caressed the flesh beneath and made it tingle in a way no other touch had ever done.

“Whatever you’re pulling, sunshine, I warn you it won’t work.” The ominous tone was touched with a trace of sympathy the man would rather not have felt.

She stiffened and jerked away. “Don’t touch me, you bastard,” she hissed, and with a quick sidestep slipped past him. Angrily, she wiped at the tears that streamed down her cheeks with balled fists, and inwardly flung a string of curses a mile long at the man behind her. It was his fault that she had been forced to dredge up memories better left forgotten; memories better left buried in the tiny cemetery in Clairmont, where the ashen remains of her mother’s body lay. Of course, it never once occurred to Hope that it had been her idea to bring on those tears in the first place. No, far better to lay the blame on a stranger’s doorstep rather than her own.

A sarcastic chuckle echoed through the air behind her as the man dragged his fingers through his hair. “Please, spare the theatrics. I’ve seen acting jobs in a bordello better than the one you just tried to pull off.”

“You’re despicable,” she spat.

“Hmmm,” the man breathed, neither agreeing nor disagreeing with her statement. “I’ve been called worse.”

“Somehow that doesn’t surprise me.” Swallowing the lump in her throat, she willed her painful memories back into the shady corner of her mind where they belonged. Many years of practice made the task surprisingly simple.

His brows rose mockingly high, crinkling his sun-kissed forehead. “Do I detect a note of sarcasm? You know, if you’re tired of my company there is a way to leave. Just tell me who sent you to my room tonight and why. Then I’ll be more than happy to unlock the door. In fact, I’ll even escort you downstairs myself.”

His voice had grown soft, cajoling. The change in timbre served to make her all the more leery. “Are we back to that again?” she asked with weary annoyance. “Lord, but I’ve never met a man as suspicious as you. How many times to I have to tell you? No-one-sent-me-here-I-stumbled-into-the-wrong-room!”

“About as many times as I have to tell you that I-don’t-believe-you.” His look darkened.

“I want the truth.”

He was sick in the head, plain and simple. What other explanation could there be? She had told him the truth. How many times now? Six? Seven? Did it matter? The man was no closer to believer her now than he had before. What more could she do to convince him? And why the hell did this have to be the first time in his life that Luke did what she’d told him to do!

“Look, mister, it’s getting late and I’m tired. I still have a lot to do, and if you don’t let me out of here pretty soon I’ll—” What? Break the door down? She had already tried. The result had been the same as screaming her head off—fruitless. Spinning on her heel, she glared into that narrowed gaze. “All right, you want the truth? You really want the truth? Fine, I’ll tell you. If you must know, the man who sent me is named Bart Bennett.” Her hands rose, then fell and slapped her thighs helplessly. “There, does that make you happy?”

The golden brow knit in a frown as he ran a palm over the bristle of stubble coating his chin. All the while, he gazed at her thoughtfully. “Bart Bennett?” he squinted, shaking his head and searching his memory. “Never heard of him.”

Hope sighed in disgust. “Somehow, that doesn’t surprise me either, considering he sent me here to meet someone else. Now, I told you what you wanted to know and you agreed to unlock the door in return.” She waited patiently, but the man made no attempt to move. “Well? Are you going to let me out of this dump or are we going to stand here and argue all night?”

“Who the hell is Bart Bennett?” he demanded, ignoring her last comment entirely.

“My father.” She bit down hard on the inside of her cheek to keep from screaming. Good God, the man’s skull was thick. At this rate she’d be lucky to get out of here before dawn! “Now will you please unlock the door?”

In one long stride, he closed the distance between them. Hope stiffened, refusing to be intimidated by that bullying glare, even when his fingers bit painfully into her shoulders.

“That does it,” he barked angrily. “I want the truth and I want it now or so help me I’ll—”

“Do what?” she taunted, lifting her chin with a courage she did not feel. “Take me over your knee? I’m a little too big for that, don’t you think?”

“No, I don’t!”

The loudness of his voice echoing in her hears did nothing to alleviate the throbbing that was quickly returning to her temples. It did, however, intricately combine with the strength in his fingers and the anger shimmering in his eyes to effectively bring home the vulnerability of her position here. The man was quickly losing what little restraint he had. If he kept goading her, and she kept responding, God only knew what would happen.

I have to get out of here, she thought wildly, and I have to get out of here quick! Desperation made her act impulsively, in the only way Hope knew how. The man held her shoulders, but not her arms. Her lips curled into a cold smile as she did something she’d been longing to do since she had first opened her eyes. She didn’t just slap that arrogant face, she balled up her fist, pooled all of her anger into her hand, and punched him as hard as she possible could. The force of the blow made his head snap back. His hands instantly released her shoulders.

Skillfully, she lifted the key from the man’s pocket before he could utter his first grunt of pain. By the time he had reached out a hand to steady his balance against the wall, shaking his head to clear it, she had the door unlocked.

Throwing it wide, she allowed herself a small, heady giggle of triumph. Her giggle turned into a full-fledged laugh when she saw the towering form of her brother standing with his hand poised mid-knock.

If Luke Bennett had been a smaller man, he might have been sent tumbling backward at the force of his sister flinging herself into his arms. But he wasn’t, and Luke didn’t so much stagger as he accepted her weight and wrapped a large arm around her shoulder. Confused, he looked down at the top of his sister’s head as it nestled into his shoulder, then let his gaze scan the room as he stroked the silky mane of chestnut hair.

The sight of the ugly bruise quickly beginning to swell on the blond man’s jaw told Luke all he needed to know. His own deep, rumbling chuckle joined his sister’s as he asked, “I guess he said no, huh?”
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Praise for California Caress
"...filled with Passion and romance—tantalizing and titillating moments to keep your inner romantic sated...Great cast of supporting characters will fall in love with. A... sexy gunslinger, damsel in distress and [a] love that may never find a way! Well balanced plot with equal amounts of love and action and suspense. A western romance that will have your heart racing and the page flipping.”
   kitty_cat, a reader; fr. the Barnes & website

Praise for Perfect Strangers
“Historical romance at its very best, Perfect Strangers delighted this reader with its proud heroine and fabulous hero. Their rocky start takes them on a conflict-filled journey, but, in the end, their love for one another cannot and will not be denied.”
Praise for Montana Wildfire
"It's a wild journey with steamy passion filled chapters! I enjoyed it immensely and will read it again, and again, and again!"
    Shawnee Poling, Owner/Webmaster of Just Another Face Book Review Site

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Son of ManThe Son of Man by C.W. Johnson

I just started reading this book. So far I can't put it down. This premise will ALWAYS get me to pick a book up, but only good writing will keep me reading it. I'm just hoping the rest of the book is equally as good! :)

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