Securing Sidney – SEAL of Protection: Legacy Book 2 by Susan Stoker

Securing Sidney
SEAL of Protection: Legacy Book 2
NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Author
Susan Stoker


For Sidney Hale, rescuing dogs is more than a hobby. It’s a calling. A deep-seated need. An unstoppable compulsion. For reasons so unsettling, she shares them with no one…until she meets Decker. After coming to her rescue while Sidney battled to save a dog—literally—the gorgeous SEAL proves he can be trusted with her secrets, her safety…maybe even her heart.

Saving an abused pit bull from a suspected dog fighter brings Decker “Gumby” Kincade not only the dog he’s always wanted, but the first woman in ages to catch his interest. Sidney’s reason for rescuing Hannah, and animals like her, is shocking…but it makes Gumby want her even more. Her harrowing past has made her the strong, brave, compassionate woman she is today. She could be The One…if Gumby can help curb her habit of putting herself squarely in danger’s path.

But he may be too late. Hannah’s previous owner is enraged over her loss…and looking for revenge.

** Securing Sidney is the 2nd book in the SEAL of Protection: Legacy Series. Each book is a stand-alone, with no cliffhanger endings.

** This story examines the stark reality of dogfighting and other animal abuse, and includes brief descriptions that may be unpleasant for some readers. .

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This is a very emotional and scary book as Susan delves into the world of dog-fighting. It’s not only the abuse the dogs are put through, but also the depravity of the people involved.

It opens after our heroine Sidney is involved in a fight over a severely abused dog. Gumby drives the dog to the vet and Sidney follows him. On that drive he not only decides to keep the dog, but also names her Hannah. Hannah’s reactions to him are absolutely priceless.

This is a favorite scene.

“We’ve got an injured dog here. We need to see a doctor immediately!”

The receptionist stood and gestured for them to follow her. Gumby was surprised when he felt Sidney’s hand land on the small of his back, and she practically glued herself to his side as they entered the small treatment room.

“A technician will be here momentarily to get your information and triage your pet.”

“Oh, but she’s—”

“Thank you,” Gumby said, interrupting Sidney.

When the lady had left, Sidney turned to him and frowned. “Why’d you cut me off?”

“The last thing I want is for them to think Hannah is a stray, or unwanted, because she’s not.”

Sidney opened her mouth to say something else, but a technician burst into the room before she could say a word.

“I heard we have an emergency. What’s— Oh my!”

Gumby very gently placed Hannah on the raised table in the room and kept his hand on her head. “Yeah. It’s bad.”

“What happened?” the vet tech breathed.

“She was taken out of my yard,” Gumby lied. “And we think the guy who took her was training her to be a bait dog or something for illegal dogfighting. He poured something caustic on her back, and it looks like she was dragged behind a car. Maybe he was trying to condition her and get her to run, but she couldn’t keep up.”

“Poor baby,” the tech crooned, leaning over to pet Hannah.

The hackles on the back of the dog’s neck rose and she growled low in her throat.

“Hannah,” Gumby said in a low, hard tone. The dog immediately stopped and whimpered instead. “Sorry about that,” he told the technician. “She’s usually very docile, but we don’t know what was done to her between when she was taken and when we got her back just now.”

“Of course,” the woman said. “It’ll take her some time to trust again.” She handed over a couple sheets of paper to Sidney. “I’ll need you to fill those out and the doctor should be in here in a few minutes.” She turned to Hannah. “Hang on, girl. We’ll have you fixed up in a jiffy.”

The second the woman left the room, Sidney turned to Gumby and whisper-yelled, “Why’d you tell them she was stolen out of your yard? That was stupid.”

Gumby ran his hand over Hannah’s head and didn’t miss the way the dog sighed in contentment and tried to crawl closer to him.

“What should I have said? That I just met the dog thirty minutes ago when you were in a fistfight with the asshole who had abused her? That you stole her from him? You think that would’ve gotten her treated any faster?” He went on before she could answer his rhetorical questions. “No. They would’ve wanted to know more details, and when we admitted that we know nothing about Hannah’s history, they might’ve been reluctant to treat her at all. This way, she’ll get the medical care she needs as soon as possible. Besides, I’m keeping her.”

Gumby had been thinking about getting a dog for a while now. Ever since he’d almost died in Bahrain on his last mission. He’d always regretted not having one, and Hannah seemed to have been dropped in his lap. It was a sign—and Gumby was a big believer in them.

“We should go through the coordinator at the local rescue group I work with. I was going to bring her there. They get medical attention for the dogs that need it, and they do extensive background checks on potential adopters,” Sidney told him.

“You do this a lot?” he asked.

“Do what?”

“Track down people you think are up to no good on social media? Then spy on them and, when they cross the line, take on men twice your size in order to rescue the animals they’re abusing?”

Without blinking, Sidney said, “Yes.”

It was Gumby’s turn to be surprised. “Seriously?”

She nodded. “The animals are innocent. They didn’t ask to be thrown into a pit to fight another dog. Or to be starved. Or to be chained up in a backyard for their entire lives. I’ll take on whoever I have to in order to save a helpless, innocent animal.”

“You ever gotten in trouble because of it?”

She grinned. “You mean do the low-life, abusive bastards turn me in? No. They’re all too busy trying to protect themselves and stay under the radar of the cops to file complaints against me.”

Gumby thought she looked a little too pleased with herself. But there was something in her eyes as she explained how she championed animals—guilt. And now he wanted to know why. Wanted to know her story.

His attention was diverted when the veterinarian entered the room. She was all business, and the next ten minutes were taken up with her examining poor Hannah and getting as much information as she could from Gumby…which wasn’t much. He told her to do a full blood panel on Hannah, as he wasn’t sure what had been done to her since she’d been taken. He wasn’t proud of his lies, but if they helped get Hannah the care she needed and deserved, so be it.

The vet agreed that it looked like some sort of acid had been poured onto her back and that she’d been dragged. The dog had no toenails left and the pads of her feet had been worn off. It was the vet’s opinion that her back looked worse than it probably was. She didn’t think the hair would grow back, but she thought the wound should heal up pretty well.

When they went to take Hannah to the back to treat her, however, the mild-mannered dog disappeared, and she began growling at the vet and her assistant.

Stepping back, the vet said, “Maybe you should come back with us. Just until we manage to get her sedated.”

“Sedated?” Gumby asked.

“Yeah. Cleaning these wounds is gonna hurt, and I’d rather not harm her any more than I have to.”

Gumby immediately nodded. “Right. Okay, we can come with you.”

“I think just you,” the vet said, giving her assistant a look Gumby couldn’t interpret. “Your…friend can stay and fill out the paperwork.”

“That okay, Sid?” Gumby asked, the nickname just coming out naturally.

Sidney nodded. “Of course.”

“You think she’ll let you pick her up again?” the vet asked.

“Only one way to see.” Gumby leaned down and whispered to Hannah, “What do ya say? These nice people are gonna get you all fixed up. Let’s not growl at them, okay?”

In response, Hannah lifted her head and licked Gumby’s face with a loud slurp.

Everyone chuckled.

“Guess that means she’s okay with it.” And with that, Gumby once again picked up the large dog and followed the vet into the back area of the animal hospital.
Susan Stoker. Securing Sidney: SEAL of Protection: Legacy, Book 2 (Kindle Locations 67-121). Stoker Aces Production, LLC.

As Decker and Sidney get to know each other, there is more than one bomb shell dropping relating to her past. Her compulsion to save these poor animals is startling and heartbreaking.

Her neighbor Nora is a hoot, and Caite becomes her friend in an unusual way.

Hannah becomes attached not only to Decker but also Sidney as she heals from her horrific wounds.

We get to see Carolyn in this one as well as Rocco and the rest of this team.

I couldn’t put this book down, as I cried, laughed and held my breath. It was disturbing, scary, romantic, loving and sexy as all get out.

Susan once again proves that any topic can be turned into a book, and this one definitely brought out the horror of dog-fighting and the difficulties of taking it down.

I can’t wait to see what the next book in this series will bring.

5 Contented Purrs for Susan!

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Susan Stoker - Photo Susan Stoker

New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, Susan Stoker has a heart as big as the state of Texas where she lives, but this all American girl has also spent the last fourteen years living in Missouri, California, Colorado, and Indiana. She’s married to a retired Army man who now gets to follow her around the country.

She debuted her first series in 2014 and quickly followed that up with the SEAL of Protection Series, which solidified her love of writing and creating stories readers can get lost in.

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Love Beyond Lies – The Outsiders Book 8 By Rebecca Royce

Love Beyond Lies
The Outsiders Book 8
Rebecca Royce


With the fate of the universe on the line, the Outsiders have reached the final battles.

Colin loves Gia beyond reason–she is his soul mate–but he has never understood her. Misunderstandings have lasted for thousands of years. Can he show her that he is the man she needs him to be?

Gia has never cared what anyone thought about her, except for Colin. Lies have torn what should be their solid bond apart. Can she make him see what they have is eternal before everything that is good in the universe disappears?


I love the complexity of this story. It’s not just about Sebastian, it’s also his parents and siblings that are a problem. Sebastian himself is a very selfish demon and thinks he can win it all by helping the outsiders. Well sort of anyway.

There are still problems with Alexa and Leonardo but that’s another book.

In this one Colin finally catches up to Gia. Only to find out that she has been avoiding him. It seems something happened in one of the previous lives that has followed her to the present. Colin also has some issues regarding his feelings that are totally messed up.

This is a favorite scene.

He was sick of the lies. Sick of the unsaid. Sick of the destruction he left in his wake everywhere. “I always mean to do the right thing.” She rocked back on her heels. “Of course you do.”

“And I love you. I’ve always loved you. I know…” He cleared his throat. There was a reason he’d gone millennia without speaking these words. “I know that you don’t love me. I know I started us out by forcing this on us and that we’re both living with the result of that. If we can manage to live through this, you can have a break from me on the other side.”

She shook her head. “What in the universe are you talking about?”

“Don’t make me say it again.” It was hard enough the first time.

“I don’t love you?” She took a step toward him. “Colin, for the sake of all things, what are you talking about?” By the time she got to the end of her sentence, she was shouting again.

He sighed. “We both know why we were paired as soul mates. It wasn’t because you had some grand feeling about me, or that you suddenly felt as though we were supposed to be together. I shoved you over. And not only that, but I…”

She blinked. “Are you talking about when you saved me from the evil intrusion in our earliest days as souls? Are you talking about then?”

He sunk to the ground. Sometimes things were just… hard. “Yep. Then. I can fight anything. I can battle even Sebastian in his non-corporeal form, it would seem. Only I can’t battle the truth. Things don’t go the same with us as everyone else, because we weren’t supposed to be together. Oh, we have some stuff in common for sure. We both wanted to battle evil when we volunteered for this. I’ll always be glad we did this. But let’s face it—”

Gia slapped him so hard across the cheek he jerked off-balance and landed on the floor, flat on his back. She stood over him and pointed her finger at him a second later. “How dare you? How dare you take everything we’ve been through together—the thousands and thousands and thousands of years together and reduce it to nothing? To a mistake? Are you out of your mind? Of course, you’re my soul mate. Of course you are. You belong to me. We don’t do things the way others do because we’ve always had a little bit of a different path. It is not because I have someone else I’m supposed to be with.”

She very rarely cried, yet right then big tears streamed down her face in a way he’d never seen before. His cheek stung, but he didn’t care. He’d felt worse. She’d never hit him before either. “Gia—”

“Colin…” She didn’t let him finish. “Have you been carrying this bullshit around in our relationship this entire time?”

“I…” He really had no idea what he should say to her in this moment. “Maybe you love me. Maybe you have grown to love me, but not the way that you would if we had been fated for each other. I’m not even sure I should be here. I think something went wrong in the process of making Christophe.”

She rubbed her eyes. “You are my soul mate, Colin, and I love you so completely that it is like you are stabbing me in the gut right now. All of this time I have tried so hard to figure out why you sometimes look at me the way that you do.”

He really had no idea what she meant. “What?”

“Like you’re sad. Like I’m causing you so much pain. I’ve tried to figure out over and over again why you don’t trust me.”

Now there she was wrong. “I do trust you.”

“You don’t because if you did you would know that I mean the things that I say to you. I knew you were my soul mate that day. I’d known it from the second you walked past me. That’s why I was standing there. You hadn’t said a word to me. I didn’t know what was happening. I kept following you around, waiting. I figured you would get around to it whenever you got over the shock of finding me and then there you were—saving my life. Why would I have said you were my soul mate if you weren’t?”

His heart pounded so hard he could hear it in his ears. “So you wouldn’t be sent away to stop existing?”

“I’ve got news for you, darling, no one was sending me anywhere. I’d like to see that crotchety old soul try to take on either one of us. And as for that ridiculous statement about Christophe, I don’t even know where to go with that. I love your brother but he is not some better version of you. You’re mine. How dare you not know it after all this time?
Rebecca Royce. Love Beyond Lies (Kindle Locations 737-768). Kindle Edition.

Colin and Gia have much to reconcile but so do all the others. This book is as enlightening as it is dark in the face of the beginning of the end.

I really can’t wait for the next book in this series!

5 Contented Purrs for Rebecca!

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Coming Soon

Rebecca Royce Rebecca Royce

As a teenager, I would hide in my room to read my favorite romance novels when I was supposed to be doing my homework. I hope, these days, that my parents think it was worth it.

I am the mother of three adorable boys and I am fortunate to be married to my best friend. I live in Austin Texas where I am determined to eat all the barbecue in town.

I am in love with science fiction, fantasy, and the paranormal and try to use all of these elements in my writing. I’ve been told I’m a little bloodthirsty so I hope that when you read my work you’ll enjoy the action packed ride that always ends in romance. I love to write series because I love to see characters develop over time and it always makes me happy to see my favorite characters make guest appearances in other books.

In my world anything is possible, anything can happen, and you should suspect that it will.

I’d love to hear from you!


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Sweet Do-Over – Indigo Bay Second Chance Romances Book 2 By Melissa McClone

Sweet Do-Over
Indigo Bay Second Chance Romances Book 2
USA Today Bestselling Author
Melissa McClone


A marriage proposal gone wrong—
a second chance to get it right.

When architect Marley Patterson goes out with Von Ryan, she never expects her practical, cautious life to be turned upside down by the handsome contractor. Von is the definition of fun, until his proposal sends her into a panic. Marriage is too serious a commitment to make after dating for only six months. Even though she cares for Von, they are too different, so she breaks up with him.

Being rejected hurts, but Von blames himself for not reading the signs or Marley better. He finds solace in work; however, his construction company’s success isn’t enough. He wants to share his life with a woman who’ll love him as much as he loves her. She’s out there. All he has to do is find her and, this time, be patient for the relationship to develop on its own.

After Marley is assigned to Von’s new project in Indigo Bay, he treats her the same as everyone else—professionally and with respect—though neither can deny a strong mutual attraction still exists. Soon Marley realizes she may have been the problem with their relationship, not just Von’s proposal. She wants a second chance, but after breaking his heart once, will he give her a do-over?

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This is a multi-author series, I am looking forward to reading some new to me authors with stories centered around Indigo Bay.

Marley is an architect and she’s assigned to a project after a co-worker quits the firm. She had strict instructions to make a good impression in order to win a second bid for a large and very profitable project.Von is the builder on this project and this could be uncomfortable. Von had very publicly proposed to Marley and she turned him down. The video is still making the rounds and is quite embarrassing.In spite of all that, Von agrees to the project even taking her on a tour of the property. That leads to a dinner and a bit more.This is a favorite scene.

“You are. Were.” She stumbled over her words. “But you and I are—”


She nodded. “We share common interests, but our personalities aren’t alike at all.”

“I didn’t listen to you enough.”

“You’re not to blame. Based on what Madison said, you did exactly what a person in love would do.”

Which meant Marley hadn’t been in love with him. Not in the same way.

His silence suggested he had similar thoughts.

“I am sorry,” she said. “I never wanted things to end the way they did, but what we wanted was so different.”

He cupped her face. “Yet here we are.”

She rested her cheek against his hand. “It’s confusing because I want…”

“Tell me.”

Marley closed her eyes as if that would make admitting the truth easier. “I want to kiss you.”

“I want that, too.” His mouth was on hers. He tasted like chocolate and something uniquely him. Soaking up his warmth, she pressed her lips against his. Pleasurable sensations skittered over her skin.

Von’s arm slipped around her, pulling her closer. She arched against him, resting a palm over his chest. The pounding of his heart matched her own. She didn’t know how long they kissed, but it wasn’t long enough.

He slowly drew away.

Her lips throbbed and tingled. She forced herself not to touch them. Her breathing came in spurts, and she tried to catch her breath. “That was…”

He ran the side of his fingertip along her jawline. “Better than I remember.”

“Much better.”

“There’s still chemistry between us.”

“This isn’t just physical.” The words poured from her. “There’s something special.”

“You feel it, too?”

As she nodded, relief flooded her. He felt it, too.

Marley waited for him to say more, but he didn’t. Okay, it would be up to her. “I know I said one date, but I don’t think that will be enough for me.”

His brows furrowed. “What do you want?”

“A second chance.” The words surprised her as much as him.

Von pressed his lips together.

“I don’t deserve one after how badly I hurt you,” she added, afraid this might be the only shot she got. “But we both admit there’s something between us. I want to find out what that is.”

“I want that, too, but I… Can I think about it?”

Her heart went splat on the wood floor of the gazebo. That hadn’t been the reply she expected.

Or wanted.

But she understood. “Take the time you need to decide. I’m not going anywhere.”
Melissa McClone. Sweet Do-Over (Kindle Locations 1422-1442). Cardinal Press, LLC.

Of course nothing is going to go totally smooth and there are many people who dislike her for what she did to Von, including his twin sister.

Marley is going to have prove herself to them and get over a lot of internal issues for this relationship to work at all.

A few twists and turns professionally, a leap of faith and plenty of romance make this a must read.

5 Contented Purrs for Melissa!

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Melissa McClone

USA Today bestselling author, Melissa McClone has published over forty novels with Harlequin and Tule Publishing Group.

With a degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, Melissa worked for a major airline where she traveled the globe and met her husband. But analyzing jet engine performance couldn’t compete with her love of writing happily ever afters.

Her first full-time writing endeavor was her first sale when she was pregnant with her first child! When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her driving her minivan to/from her children’s swim practices and other activities.

Melissa lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children, two spoiled Norwegian Elkhounds, and cats who think they rule the house. They do!

Brett – SEALs of Honor Book 11 by Dale Mayer

SEALs of Honor Book 11
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


High seas terror, international intrigue… homegrown problems…

Rescuing hostages on a yacht is a fairly normal mission for Brett, one of the elite SEALs, but having one of those hostages be an ex-girlfriend and her kids — well that changes everything.

Particularly now that he knows she’s single again.

Ceci had walked away from Brett and into another relationship as a way to heal. Only to end up as a widow raising two kids. She planned to stay single and secure, avoid all the heartbreak that relationships bring until she comes face to face with her rescuer…and realizes she’s been fooling herself for years.

Unfortunately safe doesn’t mean safe anymore as the situation goes from bad to worse and she realizes she might never get a chance to fix her mistake…

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This book opens with a rescue, pirates had taken a private yacht off the coast of Africa.

It’s during this rescue Brett gets a shock. The woman who broke his heart years ago is huddled with her two young children.

This is a favorite scene.

Using the blueprints he’d memorized, Brett moved quickly through the decks. As he cleared each floor he updated his team. He was set to meet Chase in four minutes, one deck up. As he arrived on the third floor he realized realized these smaller rooms were likely the crew’s living quarters. He did a quick sweep through the bedrooms. The first three were empty and as he approached the fourth he heard a sound that made his heart freeze.

A child’s cries of distress.

He went to open the door but found it locked from the inside. He tapped once and then tapped two more times. The door cracked opened and a terrified woman’s face peered out. He brushed her backwards and slipped into the room out of sight. And he choked back a shocked gasp.

Two little children were wrapped around the woman’s legs. He knew of them, but hadn’t met either yet. And he knew exactly how old they were. The boy, Jimmy, was four and the girl, Jennifer, was almost two.

Their mother, Ceci, was on the outside edge of that huge extended family his mother had married into. And the only woman he’d ever loved.

In his night gear he knew she couldn’t recognize him. And she had to be terrified of his weapons.

He held a finger up to his mouth and whispered, “It’s okay, Ceci. It’s me, Brett. You need to remain here with the children, and stay as quiet as you can be.”

She gasped in shock then her face lit up in relief and joy.

He squatted down to the boy and said in a low voice, “Jimmy, you have to be very, very quiet until I come back here and help you, and your mom, and sister off the boat, okay?”

The little boy sniffled, his eyes huge, lower lip trembling. But he straightened up and nodded. Good. At a single rap on the door, Brett moved quickly and without another word, he slipped into the hallway where Chase waited for him. As they moved away Chase said, “Twelve hostiles are on the top floor above us. All hostages are with them.”


“Machine guns and grenades, a few handguns. Nothing major.”

Brett snorted. It said much about the type of work they did that those weapons weren’t considered major.
Mayer, Dale. SEALs of Honor: Books 11-13 (p. 5). Valley Publishing Ltd.. Kindle Edition.

Now you’d think that would be enough excitement. However, it’s only the beginning.

Once the yacht is secured, Ceci refuses to get back on. Because her purse was taken by the pirates she had no idea where her passports are. Waiting in the US Embassy in Somalia for the paperwork to go through is comfortable, but Ceci wants to be home.

Then all hell breaks loose as Brett is visiting. This is fortuitous since he’s able to get Ceci and her children to safety. That safety is in the form of Bullock.

With there history, Brett is a bit leery but is undeniably still in love with her. Ceci on the other hand is confused yet she knows a confession is in order if they are going to be able to start again.

I love the way Dale incorporates the people from the different series into her stories. I love Dave and Bullock, and the rest of Brett’s unit.

There is plenty of action, twists and turns and sizzle in this book as Brett and Ceci reconnect.

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

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Dale Mayer

Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).

She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!

To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.

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ARC Review of Wilder – Military Intelligence Section 6 Book 2 by Heather Slade

Military Intelligence Section 6 Book 2
Heather Slade


Drive me wilder…

MI-5 Agent Sutton “Wilder” Whittaker is in high demand. The international section of Her Majesty’s Secret Service is ready to employ the fearless and selfless agent. Before Wilder can consider the position, he must close a case that hits a little too close to home.

Finley “Wren” Harlow is the United States’ Department of Homeland Security’s secret weapon. Tenacious, intelligent, and beautiful, she’s the perfect combination of deadly poison. Now, it’s up to her to convince the UK to extradite the man who masterminded several attempted terrorist attacks on US soil. But when she encounters Wilder, the man in the charge of the case, Wren is shocked at how stubborn, inflexible, and utterly irresistible he is. He’s a man to be reckoned with—and she plans to do the reckoning.

With their undeniable attraction growing, one thing is certain: one of them must cave. Can two unflinching agents find common ground to save their countries and secure their hearts?

While each book in the Military Intelligence Section 6 Series is a standalone with its own HEA, they may be more enjoyable read in order.

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Finley “Wren” Harlow has arrived to extradite Michael Caird to the US. She has the paperwork she just has to get past the rest of the red-tape. Unfortunately for her, the UK lower courts approval of the extradition gets rescinded before she can take custody.

MI5’s Agent Sutton “Wilder” Whittaker is in charge of the case, and he finds himself very attracted to Wren from the moment they meet. What he has to do is get her to participate in a little subterfuge so she’ll stay on the case in England.

This of course is against what her boss at DHS wants. It’s also her boss who is known to Wilder, and not for a good reason.

He led her up the same winding staircase and into one of the rooms with a lit fireplace that she’d noticed earlier. Once inside, he pulled the pocket door closed behind them.

“Mighty cozy,” she drawled.

Wilder motioned to the table and held her chair as she sat down. The formal place setting in front of her was as eclectic as everything else Wren had laid eyes on since walking into the Five Hertford. There was no doubt it was the finest mismatched silver she’d ever seen.

“Dinner will be served shortly,” Wilder said, joining her at the table after making a brief call on the old-fashioned-looking phone sitting on a small side table next to the two chairs that faced the fireplace.

“May I?” he motioned to an open bottle of wine.

“Please.” Wren watched as he poured, twisting the bottle effortlessly so as not to spill a drop as he lifted it away from her glass.

“Are all the dining rooms this private?” she asked.

“Not at all. In fact, most of the other rooms are quite a bit larger.”

He placed his napkin on his lap when she did, leaned forward, and rested his elbows on the edge of the table.

“Please say whatever is on your mind,” Wren told him, trying to shake off her discomfort over her earlier frankness.

“I have a proposition for you.”

In an act that would’ve been pure drama, Wren considered tossing her napkin back on the table and walking out, but something told her that her attempt at humor might fall flat.

“I didn’t phrase that very well. I didn’t mean it the way you’re probably thinking.”

“You have the floor Agent Whittaker. Speak your piece.”

Wilder sat back in his chair. “I know that I suggested we leave our siblings behind while we enjoyed dinner, but I must admit, mine brought something to my attention earlier that I find myself anxious to give him credit for.”

“And what was that?”

“He said, in essence, we both want the same thing.”

He waited as though he was giving her time to protest.

“Very well,” he murmured when she didn’t say anything. “You want to extradite Caird to the US in order to question him about whom he was working with. The UK seeks the same information.”

“And your brother’s suggestion?”

“We work together.”

“I assume he’s suggesting that it be done in the UK.”

“You are aware that Matthew is mentally ill.”

“Our government would conduct their own tests to determine the validity of his illness.”

“He wouldn’t survive it.”

“The tests?”

“The trip to the US.”

Before Wren could ask what he meant, she heard a rap at the door. Wilder waited for her to nod before he stood and slid it open.

Something that smelled absolutely divine was wheeled in on a cart and dramatically placed in front of her. “Lobster bisque,” the server announced as he removed the silver dome.

“I can assure you there is none better anywhere in the world,” Wilder said as the server placed the same in front of him.

“Is there anything else I can bring at this time, sir?” the man asked.

“Nothing for me, thank you,” Wren answered when both Wilder and the waiter looked at her.

“Shall I close the door on my way out, sir?” he asked.

“Please,” Wilder answered. “Where were we?” he asked, motioning for her to go ahead and eat.

“Caird’s extradition and our unwillingness to take no for an answer.”

Wilder smiled. “There’s no point in continuing that conversation. SIS will never agree to it.”

“My assignment is strictly to extradite a man who is wanted for crimes committed in the United States. The treaty is quite clear—”

Wilder held up his hand. “I am aware of the extradition treaty.”

“You are also aware that your own courts have determined that you must release him to my custody.”

Wilder sighed. “What they determined is that there is cause for extradition. Not that he should be released.”

“Same difference.” He smiled. “Are you enjoying the bisque?”

“Not half as much as the conversation.”

That made him laugh out loud. “I’m disappointed that you don’t appear as eager to collaborate as I am.”

“You’re only interested in collaboration because you know that soon the suspect will be out of your jurisdiction.”

There was another rap on the door, and before Wilder could summon the person in, the door opened and someone other than the previous server came in.

“I’m terribly sorry to disturb,” the man said. “But there is an urgent call for you, sir.”

“Excuse me,” said Wilder, not appearing surprised by the intrusion.

When the door closed behind him, Wren pulled out her cell phone only to find that she had no signal. It wasn’t surprising, given the exclusivity of the club; however, it left her annoyed at her inability to at least check her email.
Heather Slade. Wilder (Kindle Locations 303-346). Book Two in the Military Intelligence Section 6 Series.

This book had me gasping in surprise more than once as the complex tale unfolds. There are many twists, even as these two try unsuccessfully to avoid a relationship.

Plenty of heat, many surprises and suspense. I can’t wait for the next book in this series!

5 Contented Purrs for Heather!

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Coming Soon!

Heather Slade

My books are filled with things that bring me joy: music, wine, skiing, families, artists, and cowboys. Not always in that order.

I’m an Amazon best-selling author, and a PAN member of Romance Writers of America. I speak, teach, blog, am an executive sommelier, and all-around entrepreneur.

I grew up an east coast girl, and then spent half my life on the west coast. Now my husband, our two boys, and I happily call Colorado home.

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Storm Cursed – Mercy Thompson Book 11 by Patricia Briggs

Storm Cursed
Mercy Thompson Book 11
NY Times Bestselling Author
Patricia Briggs


In this powerful entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series, Mercy Thompson must face a deadly enemy to defend all she loves…

My name is Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman, and I am a car mechanic.

And a coyote shapeshifter.

And the mate of the Alpha of the Columbia Basin werewolf pack.

Even so, none of that would have gotten me into trouble if, a few months ago, I hadn’t stood upon a bridge and taken responsibility for the safety of the citizens who lived in our territory. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. It should have only involved hunting down killer goblins, zombie goats, and an occasional troll. Instead, our home was viewed as neutral ground, a place where humans would feel safe to come and treat with the fae.

The reality is that nothing and no one is safe. As generals and politicians face off with the Gray Lords of the fae, a storm is coming and her name is Death.

But we are pack, and we have given our word.

We will die to keep it.

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Patricia Briggs has done it again. A page turning adventure with Mercy Thompson Hauptman smack dap in the middle.

The government has contracted Adam’s security company to provide protection during meetings with the Gray Lords. With Adam in meetings and out of contact it’s Mercy that gets called when things get weird in the Tri-Cities. Boy do they get weird, starting with a criminal goblin, and a confrontation with Mary Jo’s ex Renny. No thanks to the Goblin King Larry.

This is a favorite scene.

“Do we have the right to remain silent?” Mary Jo asked.

“You aren’t under arrest,” he said with a quelling look. “Not yet, anyway. As long as you didn’t kill him, you probably won’t be. But Captain Allen is coming in and asked me not to start anything until he gets here. This would have been a lot easier for you if you had called us in the first place. Before there was a dead goblin whose head is in the back of the car. You know better, Mary Jo; why didn’t you call us in?”

She looked pointedly at me.

“The farmer didn’t want to be responsible for getting people killed,” I explained. “I agreed with him. Goblins are outside your ability to deal with.”

Renny’s eyes got cold, and he studied me for a moment. “All due respect, ma’am, you don’t know what we are capable of dealing with.”

“All due respect, Renny,” said Mary Jo, “I have a pretty freaking good idea of your capabilities. And I think Mr. Traegar’s decision to bring us in first was the correct one. We don’t really know what we’re dealing with when it comes to the fae—there is no way that the sheriff’s office would. We had two werewolves, Mercy and the goblin king out there—and if it weren’t for the goblin king we’d have failed to bring him in ourselves.”

He gave her a look. “I am going to ignore—just for a minute—how much my geek side is loving that apparently there is a goblin king in the world. And that he is—again apparently—here in the Tri-Cities. Even knowing that David Bowie is gone, I am giddy about this.” He said all that in a very dry, professional tone.

I was starting to really like this guy.
Briggs, Patricia. Storm Cursed. Mercy Thompson Book 11. Ace Publishing. pp. 43-44.

Things get weirder as they called by a farmer to address miniature zombie goats. Yes, you read that right.

The goats lead to the discovery of black witches in town and that the pack’s witch Elizaveta’s family has been practicing Black Magic.

Mercy has her work cut out for her with not only the pack and the weirdness but also being recruited to find a venue for the big meeting.

We get to see not only Mary Jo, but also Ben, Zee, Tad, Uncle Mike, Larry aka goblin king, Stefan, Marsilia, we learn a lot more about Sherwood, and Wolfe plus Coyote inserts mischief as well.

As far as romance goes, well this isn’t that kind of novel, Adam and Mercy’s relationship grows in every book, but I have to say I’ll never think of the word ‘Nudge’ quite the same, ever.

This is a can’t put it down until your done book with action, lots of surprises, interesting information and so much more!

5 Contented Purrs for Patricia!

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Patricia Briggs

Patricia Briggs was born in Butte, Montana, to a children’s librarian who passed on to her kids a love of reading and books. Patricia grew up reading fairy tales and books about horses, and later developed an interest in folklore and history. When she decided to write a book of her own, a fantasy book seemed a natural choice. Patricia graduated from Montana State University with degrees in history and German and she worked for a while as a substitute teacher.

Patricia and her family reside in Eastern Washington near Tri-Cities, home of Mercy Thompson; yes, it’s a real place! When not working on the next book, she can be found playing truant out in her horse pastures, playing with the newest babies.

Trouble In Summer Valley – Familiar Legacy Book 4 by Susan Y. Tanner

Trouble In Summer Valley
Familiar Legacy Book 4
Susan Y. Tanner



Avery Wilson knew starting over would be hard, but she never expected to be in an all-out war with her ex. What was he planning next? Her goal of equine rehabilitation for wounded veterans on her Alabama horse ranch was slipping from her grasp, and her precious horses were in danger.

Dirks Hanna had what should have been a simple mission – evaluate Summer Valley Ranch for federal funding. But something deadly was happening in Summer Valley. The beautiful – and headstrong – equestrian was targeted for harm with danger in every direction. And, intertwined with that danger, was a multi-faceted black cat who somehow appeared at the scene of every disaster.

Trouble had arrived at the ranch anticipating bitter human emotions to run high, but the black cat finds his paws more than full with murder and two very stubborn humans who refuse to see they are meant for each other.

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I love Trouble! The cat that is, he seems to follow his instincts wherever they lead him and Tammy Lynn his human is totally okay with this. In this tale, an email from Tammy Lynn’s friend Avery has him traveling, not too far away to Summer Valley Ranch and into a very interesting situation.

Avery’s ex-husband is angry and deeply in debt. He lost his court case and has threatened her. She has retained sole ownership of her ranch and her horses, much to his dismay. Not that he had any right to it to begin with.

Dirks has arrived on the scene to evaluate the ranch for therapeutic horse therapy for veterans. This is a contract Avery has been working very hard to get. But there is more to this than meets the eye.

Avery’s step-daughter is a big part of what the ranch is today. This is also something that annoys her ex.

Dirks and Avery arrive at the ranch, together, after Avery’s car is trashed by ‘vandals’. What they find is unexpected and disturbing.

This is a favorite scene.

Carlee shook her head and her mid-length layers of hair swirled slightly with the movement. “You didn’t see him, Avery. I’m not sure he can pull himself together. His hands were shaking – not just trembling – but shaking and he was talking wild. Kept saying ‘they’ would be angry and he wasn’t going to take the blame for what you’d done to him.”

“They?” Avery was completely confused. “They, who?”

“I don’t know. I asked. He wouldn’t answer me.”

“Don’t worry about it for now,” Avery said firmly, shifting into mother mode. “You’re exhausted and so am I. We’ll get some rest and clean up this mess first thing in the morning. I’ll finish and lock up here. You go on inside.”

Carlee didn’t seem at all sure about leaving Avery and turned her attention to Dirks for the first time. Her eyes narrowed in warning. “Who are you?”

Dirks gave his name and held out his hand, waiting patiently for Carlee to shake it. Avery could see her hesitance and offered as much explanation as she could.

“Mr. Hanna will be staying in the guest quarters while he checks out what we can offer wounded veterans.” She was relieved to see Carlee’s shoulders lose some of their tension.

“Welcome to Summer Valley Ranch,” Carlee said, with more welcome but still no smile.

Avery suspected she didn’t have much ‘smile’ left in her after the episode with Craig. “Get some rest, Carlee,” she said gently. “I’ll get Mr. Hanna settled and see you in the morning. Everything will seem better with the sun.”

Carlee gave her an ‘I’m not so sure look’ but she complied, giving Avery a light, quick hug before turning to leave. At the door of the barn, she cast a final backward, slightly anxious glance.

“She’s worried about you,” Dirks offered. Avery sighed. “Well, that’s two of us.” She brushed tangled hair from her face. “I’ll show you to the guest quarters and let you take your bags in while I get some fresh linen.”

“What remains to be done out here?”

The question surprised her. “With the horses? Nothing.” She glanced toward the tack room with the tangle of ruined headstalls. “Nothing at all.”
Susan Y. Tanner. Trouble in Summer Valley (Kindle Locations 349-367). KaliOka Press. Kindle Edition

There is much to do and little time to accomplish things as more chaos ensues.

Dirks finds himself in an awkward position as he finds himself not only attracted to Avery, but convinced she has nothing to do with fraud.

Fast-paced and suspenseful, this tale unfolds with many twists and turns and Trouble is right in the middle of it all, helping to find the right clues.

I really can’t wait to read the next installment in this wonderful multi-author series.

5 Contented Purrs for Susan!

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Susan Y. Tanner

Susan Yawn Tanner continues to blend her passion for horses with her passion for writing.

In Trouble in Summer Valley, she introduced readers to the rescue horses of Summer Valley Ranch where they prove their worth in the world of therapeutic riding. In Turning for Trouble, her own rodeo experience brings that rough and tumble world to life. Her third romantic mystery, Trouble in Action, showcases the risky world of stunt riding while giving a glimpse into historical reenactments. Published as Susan Y. Tanner and released by KaliOka Press, these books are part of the Familiar Legacy series written in concert with some very talented authors.

Two of her historical romances, Fire Across Texas and Winds Across Texas, have been rereleased by Secret Staircase Books, an imprint of Columbine Publishing. Soon to follow will be A Warm Southern Christmas, Highland Captive, Captive To A Dream, and Exiled Heart. All were previously published by Leisure Books. Her historical romances will all be rereleased as Susan Yawn Tanner.

Guarding Your Heart – Baytown Boys Book by Maryann Jordan

Guarding Your Heart
Baytown Boys Book 9
USA Today Bestselling Author
Maryann Jordan


Sophie Bayles was devastated by grief when her beloved brother, a soldier, had been killed in action when she was a teenager. Guarding her heart, she left Baytown and the boy she had loved…her brother’s best friend.

Callan Ward lucked out when he was assigned to the Coast Guard station in his hometown of Baytown. Back with the Baytown Boys and his family, the desire to leave again was no longer what he wanted. There was only one thing missing…Sophie. The girl who left, finding the memories in Baytown too painful.

Ten years after she left, Sophie is older, wiser, missing home, and jumps at the chance to return to Baytown for a temporary job. Reconnecting with the man she rejected after her brother’s funeral was not on her agenda, but she discovered that in trying to guard her heart, she had only cut herself off from true love.

As she and Callan grow closer, discovering their feelings had not changed, she stumbles into suspicious activity near her work.

Having promised to guard her heart, Callan and his friends work to make sure Sophie is safe before someone decides to quiet her permanently.

Language and scenes are similar to what you would find in an R-rated movie. 18+ readers only.

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In this book we delve into the past. We heard about Phillip, he’s the only Baytown Boy that didn’t come home from the war. Right there has me tearing up. Sophie is his sister and Callen his best-friend and their neighbor.

We get to see the relationship between the three of them, but most important the one between Callen and Sophie. She fell in love with him as a child, when a simple act of kindness set their bond.

Phillip’s death impacted everyone, but it totally broke Sophie and she in turn broke the relationship between her and Callen. Her reasoning was only to guard her heart from more pain.

This is a favorite scene, oh the tears.

Their houses were only a few blocks from the town pier, and they walked silently out to the end. Leaning her elbows on the rail, she sucked in a deep breath of salty air and closed her eyes to the setting sun.

“I can’t imagine this place without him,” she said, her words barely heard over the breeze. “Not just my house, but every part of this town has Philip imprinted on it.”

“I know,” Callan agreed, his arms on the railing, touching hers.

They fell into another silence, both seemingly lost in their thoughts. The warmth of his arm began to seep into her, and just as she opened her mouth to tell him how glad she was that he was here, he spoke suddenly.

“I leave tomorrow.”

Her head jerked around, and she asked, “Back to base?” His silence stretched, and renewed fear begin to claw at her heart. “What? What aren’t you telling me?”

“I’m being deployed,” he said, turning to face her, his hands on her shoulders. “I didn’t want to tell you because I didn’t want you to worry. But we’re being called up under the Department of Navy.”

Her mouth opened, but the words halted in her throat.

“There are a lot of oil rigs in the water of the Middle East,” he began. “I can’t tell you much, but we’re needed to help protect that.”

The fear in her heart began pounding, but she could barely feel it over the roar in her ears. “You’re going over there? You’re going to be in danger?”

“It was always a risk, Sophie,” he said, anguish in his voice. “I don’t want to hurt you, but I wanted you to know. I wanted us to—”

She stepped backward, out of his reach, her head moving slowly back and forth as she whispered, “No. I can’t do this… not again. I can’t risk this… not again. I’m sorry… I’ve got to guard my heart.”

Callan followed Sophie, keeping his eyes on her until he was sure she made it home safely. Oh, Sophie… I would have guarded your heart. He walked into his house, hugged both of his parents and went upstairs to his room. His heart was splintered with grief for his best friend and agony for his best friend’s sister, the girl he knew he loved… and now, would never have.
Maryann Jordan. ARC for Guarding Your Heart: Not for sale, sharing, or distribution (Kindle Locations 406-427).

Sophie left Baytown too, for college and then stayed away for work. An opportunity that becomes spoiled by a co-worker and her bosses reactions.

Striking out on her own an opportunity arises that she can’t turn down and also has her returning to Baytown.

Callen has been stationed in Baytown for quite a while and enjoys being close to home, with his friends settling down he finds himself in a dilemma as his enlistment is nearing the end. Re-up or retire.

I did a lot of tearing up in this book, this story tugs the heart-strings with memories and reunions. Of course there’s plenty of intrigue that Sophie manages to stumble onto.

Intrigue, action, romance, tears and simmer to sizzle heat, make this a must read.

5 Contented Purrs for Maryann!

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Winter Blog About Author

Maryann Jordan

I have always been an avid reader. My early memories were of my mother taking me to the library and allowing me to check out as many books as I could carry. My favorite books were checked out numerous times and read over and over. I would use my Barbie dolls to play out the scenes in books (such as Nancy Drew!).

I have written as a hobby for many years (probably since childhood). I have written devotionals, autobiographical writings about having a severely handicapped, medically fragile child, about my mother’s Alzheimer’s, and other subjects that interest me.

I joke that I “cut my romance teeth” on the old historical romance books. In 2013, I started a blog to showcase wonderful writers. In 2014, I finally gave in to the characters in my head pleading for their story to be told. Thus, Emma’s Home was created.

I worked as a counselor in a high school and was involved in education for the past 30 years, until retiring in 2015. I have been married to a wonderfully patient man for 35 years and have 2 adult, very supportive daughters. When writing, my dog or one of my cats will usually be found in my lap!

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Breaking Chains -SEAL Team Heartbreakers Book 8 By Teresa J. Reasor

Breaking Chains
SEAL Team Heartbreakers Book 8
NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Author
Teresa J. Reasor


Ex-Navy SEAL Derrick Armstrong walks out of the Miramar military brig with a dishonorable discharge, a criminal record, and no prospects. The odds are against him being able to build a normal life after prison, but his training as a SEAL keeps him going.

Ella Bailey is struggling financially to raise her seven-year-old son alone. Life has dealt her some hard blows and when Derrick steps between her and another one, she’s both grateful and wary. She views men as obstacles to avoid, but she’s drawn to Derrick, and sees something special in him.

Derrick’s kept his past a secret. When Ella’s ex-boss is found dead and the cops question them both, he realizes, whether he’s done anything or not, he’s living on borrowed time. When they train their sights on Ella instead, he moves to protect her, and in the process exposes his past.

Will she kick him to the curb or will she allow him to build a life with her and her son?

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Circumstances in Derek’s career have left him dishonorably discharged from the Navy. A sad and possibly preventable occurrence had steps been taken early enough.

Ella struggles daily to make ends meet, her boss is a jerk and is constantly hitting on her. Then there’s the day he goes too far. Fortunately for Ella, Derek is the one that comes to her aid, and he does it  in a way that can change things. Not only for her but also for the others working there. That is if Ella can convince them to do something.

This is a favorite scene.

Half a block down from the club he said, “You can get up off the floor now.”

She pushed free of the dash and settled into the seat. For several blocks she remained silent. “He hit my car with the bat.”

“Yeah. I can knock out the dent while I’m changing the tires and balancing them for you. He gave me cash for the repairs.”

“How did you manage that?”

“He set the whole thing up. I called him on it.” He pulled to a stop at the red light and ran searching eyes over her. “He didn’t hurt you, did he?”

“No.” Though she denied it, she touched her arm as though she had some pain there. “He meant to. If he’d been able to get me down, he’d have done worse.” Her voice shook, and she cleared her throat.

“The hair spray was a good weapon of opportunity. You did good.”

“Thanks.” She clamped her hands between her knees, but her knees bobbed like her feet rested on springs.

The light changed and he stepped on the gas. “How long you been working at the club?”

“About three weeks.”

Shit, this was not his business. “If you want to call the cops, I’ll testify to what I saw and the bribe he gave me to keep my mouth shut.”


“Yeah. He gave me five hundred to pay for the tow, tires, and the alignment. And a thousand to keep my mouth shut about seeing you running out of the bar like it was about to blow up.”

She gaped at him.

He shrugged. “It didn’t take a mental giant to figure things out. He was al over you at the bar while you were working. And you were doing everything you could to avoid being touched. I can even guess how he set it up. He slips out while you’re busy, punctures your tires, then waits for the girls to clear out. If you’d cal ed someone to pick you up, he’d have tried something else another night.”

“One of the girls warned me. And he followed me into the dancers’ dressing room when I went back in to see if anyone was stil there. I was going to ask for a ride home.”

“He probably did the same thing to the woman who warned you.”

She brushed a hand over her cap of short black hair, her throat working as she swallowed. “God.”

“Do you want to go to the police with this?”

“I need to think about it.” She fel silent, her face turned away to the passing street. She hugged herself.

He turned into the garage parking lot, hit the electronic door opener, and turned the wrecker to off-load her car, then exited the cab and moved to tilt the bed and turn on the winch to lower the car to the concrete floor over the rack.

He looked up as the woman swung down out of the cab and walked toward him into the light. Dressed in straight-legged jeans and a black turtleneck, she was slender and long-limbed. The slow, graceful way she walked reminded him of a dancer he once dated several years ago. He’d seen women with dark hair, but none so dark it held a bluish sheen. Her large eyes, surrounded by lashes the same deep tone, had a golden, whiskey tint to them. Beneath a slender nose, the heavy pout of her lips drew his attention, and his rushing heartbeat picked up a notch.

Damn, she was beautiful.

Pale pink traveled along her cheekbones and she looked away without making eye contact.

The very last thing she needed was him staring at her. “If you’ll come into the office, I’l get the paperwork set up to do the repairs.”


Beneath the lights in the smal office he got a good look at her injuries. “Your neck is red. You’re going to have some bruises.”

She touched the tender skin and flinched.

“You have a phone, I can take pictures of it for you.”

She eyed him. “I’ll get my neighbor to do it for me.”

She didn’t trust him enough to turn her back on him. He could understand that.
Once she’d signed the paperwork, he said, “If you have someone to pick you up, I’l get the repairs done and deliver the car to your house in the morning.”

“I’ll wait. I’l need it to take my son to school in the morning.”

“Okay, but if I get called out to another tow, I’ll have to go. That’s what I get paid for around here. I’ll hurry to get the flats switched out as fast as I can, and while I’m working you can take a seat in here and I’ll close the door.” He pointed to the leather bench seat against one wall opposite a long row of filing cabinets. And a desk. “The hydraulic wrench is loud as hell.”

He closed the door behind him, slipped on noise-muffling headphones, and went to work. The whole time he was positioning the car onto the rack, removing the lug nuts and changing out the tires, his thoughts dwelled on her.

How did someone as beautiful as she was end up at a strip club?

And was her suspicious, hard edge a new thing, or one she’d developed over several years? He’d bet it followed the birth of her kid. And why was he thinking about her like this, when he wouldn’t have a chance in a million with her? It wasn’t like he’d even want one. He was carrying too much baggage already, and she’d just be one more complication.
Teresa J. Reasor. Breaking Chains (Kindle Locations 493-535). Kindle Edition.

Nothing is really easy for either of them. As this book progresses Derek is approached to aid in an investigation, and Ella falls into a job she’s not sure she wants.

Ella is a great mother and has been through so much. Derek also wants to gain forgiveness from his former SEAL team something that seems impossible. Their journeys are compelling and their romance even more so.

Once again Teresa Reasor has given us a story filled with action, compassion, sizzling heat and more!

I now have to go back and catch up on this series, I’ve missed a couple.

5 Contented Purrs for Teresa!

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Teresa J. Reasor

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Teresa Reasor was born in Southeastern Kentucky, but grew up a Marine Corps brat. The love of reading instilled in her in Kindergarten at Parris Island, South Carolina made books her friends during the many transfers her father’s military career entailed. The transition from reader to writer came easily and she was a closet novelist for many years until 2007 when her first book was published.

After twenty-one years as an Art Teacher and ten years as a part time College Instructor, she’s now retired and living her dream as a full time Writer.

Her body of work includes both full-length novels and shorter pieces in many different genres, Military Romantic Suspense, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Historical Romance, Contemporary Romance, and Children’s Books.

Chase – SEALs of Honor Book 10 By Dale Mayer

SEALs of Honor Book 10
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


Everyone has something in their history they’d like to keep buried in the past…

Chase has more than most. And his secrets are about to blow wide open as one really bad part of his past has come looking for him.

Vanessa is all about moving forward in her life and not looking back. There are enough painful memories in her history for a lifetime.

But when she gets embroiled in Chase’s problems, they become her problems too.

Both need to deal with their pasts, because if they don’t, they might no longer have a future.

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This book opens in the sandbox, the guys are deployed and they find a couple of the kids that ran errands for them, hurt in the desert. One of them gives information that helps them get rid of a major threat in the region. That earns the brothers and their mother a place in the US.

Vanessa has a job that is stressful and she also has secrets that result in her having nightmares. She is one of the people who help immigrants to acclimate to being in the US. Amrit, his brother, now called Peter and his mother are clients of Vanessa and they want to meet up with Chase again.

Chase has a past that is about to become an issue. He had been forced to become a gang member, but when he turned eighteen ran far and fast. Joining the Navy and never looking back. When he’s contacted to meet with Amrit he doesn’t hesitate, but he does inadvertently put Vanessa in the line of fire with his past.

This is a favorite scene when he meets up with them.

Dressed in a tight T-shirt, tattooed and muscle bound, he looked like he belonged with the men on the far side, but he stopped at the playground. He studied the boys long enough to make her uncomfortable. She was about to stand up and walk closer when he called out, “Amrit? Peter?”

The boys stopped what they were doing, saw him and raced toward him. He grabbed one in each arm, swung them up and spun around before dropping them back down to their feet.

“It’s great to see you two,” Chase cried, hugging them both. “Life is so much better over here. No sand,” he said with a big grin.

The boys were laughing and shouting and talking a mile a minute.

Vanessa smiled. Out loud she said, “So this is Chase.”

Young with blond hair, but he had that tough can-do attitude so many of the military men had. Chase was Navy, and she’d heard rumors he was a SEAL when she’d tried to track him down, but no one could confirm that. Of course they wouldn’t. Such was life in the military. Something she wasn’t a part of.

Still, she could believe the rumors. He looked to have what it took to be an over-the-top achiever like all the others. The stories were wild and too incredible to believe, but they served a purpose, and she had no reason to doubt they were at least half true.

With Sinja at her side, Vanessa got up and walked toward the three males. When Chase looked up at her, she almost gasped at the scar slashing across his face. Taking a deep breath she held out her hand and said, “Hi, I’m Vanessa.”

Chase shook it. Then he turned to Sinja and said with a gentle smile, “Hello. How nice to see you and the boys here.”

With the introductions over, they all moved back to the bench where the boys peppered Chase with question upon question. He showed great tolerance and patience as he answered them, then asked a few of his own in a teasing voice.

Finally, when all the chatter ceased, Chase had a chance to ask, “What’s this I hear about you not going to school very often?”

Amrit wrinkled his nose. “It feels funny. Like people are watching me.”

Silence fell upon the small group. Vanessa held her breath. Was that Amrit’s imagination or had some of his bad luck followed him here?

She glanced over at Chase, who was contemplating Amrit’s face. He pulled out a little notepad, wrote down a phone number and handed it to Amrit. “If you ever feel like you see somebody following you or that you are fearful of your life, call me. I can’t guarantee I will always be here because of my own job, but I’ll do the best I can.”

Amrit’s face burst into a big smile. He grabbed the piece of paper, pocketed it and raced back to the playground, Peter on his heels.

Amrit called back, “Thanks.”

Sinja shook Chase’s hand and left the two of them alone so she could stand closer to her sons.

“That went well,” Vanessa said with a smile.

“Maybe he just needed to know he’s not alone.” “Maybe,” Chase said in a noncommittal voice, his gaze on the boys. “Wouldn’t it be nice if all of life’s problems were so easily solved?”

“Yes, wouldn’t it.” Vanessa stood up and turned to face him. “Thank you so much for coming.”

“Of course.” He motioned at the boys. “They certainly won’t be missing anything now. Their life is so vastly different from what they had before.”

Her gaze on the boys as well, she asked quietly, “Can you share a little bit about their life before?”

Chase explained about their living conditions, the father being dragged out of the village and shot in front of them, how the mother and boys had been beaten. How they’d scraped for food and run errands at the camp for the men in order to make a little bit of money on the side. He shrugged. “The opportunities to help the kids are endless. I wasn’t there very long. I’m surprised he remembered me,” Chase admitted. “I only played soccer with him for a few days. I’m sure many of the other men doing a tour over there had a bigger impact on his life.”

“I think it’s because you rescued him. All the other men faded, and it’s your face he remembers.”

He tossed her a bright smile. “Once he starts to adjust the bad memories will fade too.” He turned to walk toward the pathway and leave the park when she said impulsively, “You’re very good with children.”

Chase laughed. “I don’t know why. I do a lot of volunteer work with kids, but I don’t have any of my own.” With a last glance at the boys and the playground, he turned and started to walk down the pathway.

Too bad, she murmured to herself. He’d be a hell of a father. Just as she was about to turn away and head back the way she’d entered the park she realized he’d stopped. He spun around and frowned, his gaze not on the playground but on the men on the far side. He glanced at her, at the kids then seemed to make a sudden decision.

There was a hard spit in the air. And something slammed into the bench beside her.

She was thrown to the ground, a hot heavy blanket covering her, and harsh words in her ear snapped, “Stay down and don’t move.”

The heavy weight lifted as Chase took off.

She twisted her head to see him race toward the playground. Peter and Amrit were standing on top of the wooden structure staring at the bench, fear on their faces. Then they’d also seen her thrown to the ground. And heard the same sound she had. She sat up and glanced around the playground, but she couldn’t see anything wrong.
Mayer, Dale. SEALs of Honor: Books 7-10 . Valley Publishing Ltd. Kindle Locations (6319-6361). Kindle Edition.

Chase’s past rapidly catches up with him as he knows he has to do the right thing.

Vanessa is in the middle and Chase likes her a lot. She doesn’t understand what’s going on but she does know she’d like to know him better.

I love these two together even if the circumstances that brought them together aren’t ideal. We see the rest of the team in this one as well and they offer up some relationship advice in their own way.

Fast-paced and action-packed, with just the right amount of heat, this is a book you won’t be able to put down.

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

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Dale Mayer

Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).

She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!

To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.

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