USA Today Bestselling Author
There are only two things in this world Tara trusts, her red lipstick and her family. Neither have ever let her down in a world full of betrayals and loss. But now her soldier daughter Lacey is missing, having vanished during a humanitarian mission with the Army overseas, and Tara is doing everything she can to find her. She just never expected the answers to her daughter’s disappearance could only be found in another galaxy.
Kadothian Warriors Karwin and Phiniar have been waiting their entire lives to find their bondmate, the one woman in the entire Universe they are destined to love. The lush and profitable Territory they hold on Kadothia for their future bride is under threat, coveted by a greedy Kadothian Matriarch who will stop at nothing to possess it. But when they finally locate their promised bride they quickly realize winning Tara’s heart will be no easy task. They have to break through a lifetime of mistrust and hurt, to convince Tara to take a chance on a love she never imagined existed, and secretly believes she doesn’t deserve.
Tara and her granddaughter Jillian are at the campground of the annual Renaissance Faire when the wave of EMF hits. It was a frightening turn of events as some panic ensues, but there are police and EMTs on the scene so it settled down quickly as they waited for more information. Eventually they were back at home and Tara was busy at the truck stop diner she owned with her aunt and uncle.
If you follow this series you know that the men are aliens from the Bel taine galaxy and before they can search for their mate there are qualifying conditions. First is a blood brother and in the beginning of this book we see how Karwin and Phin meet and bond. They also decide on the territory they will have for their matriarch to rule once they find her and she accepts the bonding with them.
The first time seeing Tara, Karwin royally messes up with her. He looks so very young that when he asks her on a date, he is rejected because of the seeming age difference. It’s Jaz who intervenes and makes it possible for them to try again.
This is a favorite scene.
For three long beats of her heart, she stared at them, unable to cope with their overwhelming presence.
“Pardon me, are you Tara?” the man with the long salt and pepper braid asked. He spoke in a deep, thrilling voice, heavy with a thick, but somehow familiar, accent she couldn’t identify.
Her own voice came out in an undignified squeak as she stood from her barstool. “Yes? I mean, yes, I’m Tara. How can I help you?”
She was tall—five-eleven—but these guys had to be at least a foot taller. It left her feeling positively dainty in their presence.
The man with the braid lowered his voice as he gave her a practiced bow. “My name is Karwin, and I am here to apologize on behalf of my son. He told me about his actions yesterday, and he deeply regrets causing you any embarrassment or unease.”
“Your son?” Her mind didn’t want to focus on anything besides how hot these two guys were, but she managed to make the connection as he looked up at her with those bluer than a tropical ocean eyes. “Oh, your son! No wonder you look familiar. It’s okay, no big deal. I get asked out on dates all the time.”
She startled as she swore both men growled so deep and low, she felt it more than heard it.
“Still, he should not have put you in such a position, and he is sorry.”
“Really—” She gave them her practiced smile. “It’s no big deal. He wasn’t rude or anything.”
“You are very generous,” Karwin said. As he smiled down at her, the lines around his eyes deepened. “And incredibly beautiful. I can see why my son attempted to woo you.”
“Woo me?” She couldn’t help but giggle.
“Court you?” The rugged man gave her a small bow. “Forgive us, we are not familiar with your countries customs and our grasp of your language is not the best. My name is Phiniar, but my friends call me Phin.”
“No worries.” She allowed herself to steal quick sneak peeks of their truly rock solid bodies. “Where you from?”
“Poland,” Phin said quickly. “We are part of an exchange program with the United States, working in the United States Army.”
She smiled at them both. “So you’re soldiers?”
“Warriors,” Karwin responded. As his shoulders went back, his aura of intimidation strengthened, and turned her on.
Something about a man in uniform, even if he wasn’t wearing it, always did it for her.
“We are in the Polish Army,” Phin said quickly. “I am a senior doctor, and Karwin is a Captain in the Infantry.”
“My daughter Lacey is a specialist in the Army,” she said with a proud smile.
Before she knew it, she found herself sharing a cup of coffee with the men as the diner slowly began to fill up around them. While she knew her Aunt was fine watching Jillian, and the little girl loved staying at the farm and playing with the animals, she felt guilty for staying past her shift to talk with Karwin and Phin. Still, she couldn’t seem to make herself leave. Seated between the two of them on the sturdy stools lining the counter, she felt a sense of flirty energy and happiness she hadn’t experienced in a long, long time. They were both single, and when she’d discreetly checked, neither had a tanned line on their finger from where a wedding ring would usually sit.
Not only were they both astonishingly good looking, but they were also fascinating and seemed to be genuinely interested in her and her life. Plus, she had to admit their attention and flirting made her feel good. She was hit on all the time by the various truckers that stopped for a night in their town, staying at the motel across the street from the truck stop and diner and looking for a bit of local tail to take home for the night. Those guys did not interest her and she never responded to their attention.
But when Karwin and Phin flirted with her, she flirted back. The sexual tension building between the three of them was both crazy and highly addictive. They never inappropriately touched her, or said anything blatantly sexual, but the way they watched her…the heat in their eyes nearly burned the air going into her lungs. It didn’t help that they both wore some kind of delicious masculine colognes that invited her to lean closer. Their scents smelled different, but somehow also blended together into a luscious combination that only heightened her arousal and desire.
Toying with her second empty cup of coffee, she ignored the way Sugar Bear stole glances out of the kitchen window—giving her knowing winks and smirks that Tara pretended not to see.
“What is the Magnolia Festival?” Karwin asked as he sipped his third cup of coffee. His teal eyes glowed with warmth. “When we arrived, banners announcing it hung all over.”
“Oh, it’s an annual festival we have in Tupelo Creek to celebrate the blooming of the magnolias.”
“Magnolias,” Phin said in his thick accent, his teeth so white against his black beard as he smiled. “Yes, the lovely white flowers with a beautiful perfume. They remind me of you.”
Ducking her head, she hid a smile as she said, “Thanks.”
“Tell me more about this festival,” Karwin asked as he turned slightly in his chair, his attention focused only on her. “What is it like?”
She was proud her voice came out steady as she answered. “They shut down the main street through town, and there are all kinds of vendors and entertainment, some fair rides, and fireworks.”
“The festival sounds interesting,” Karwin murmured as his gaze landed on her lips like a kiss. “Perhaps you could show us?”
“If it is not a nuisance,” Phin said quickly, as he shot Karwin an undecipherable look over her shoulder. “We do not wish to impose on you, but what you described sounds very interesting.”
Her heart gave a little happy pitter patter as she smiled. “I would love to.”
Mayburn, Ann. Tara’s Warriors (Bondmates Book 5). Honey Mountain Publishing. Kindle Locations (1153-1211). Kindle Edition.
I really loved all the interactions at the Magnolia Festival and the beginnings it leads to. Fortunately Tara will be able to have her daughter and granddaughter join her as part of their family.
Twists and turns, joy and despair, and a very different romance with kindle melting heat, as this tale cumulates into the lead in of the next book.
I can’t wait for Lacey’s Warriors to be released!
5 Contented Purrs for Ann!
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With over forty published books, Ann is Queen of the Castle to her husband and three sons in the mountains of West Virginia. In her past lives she’s been an Import Broker, a Communications Specialist, a US Navy Civilian Contractor, a Bartender/Waitress, and an actor at the Michigan Renaissance Festival. She also spent a summer touring with the Grateful Dead-though she will deny to her children that it ever happened.
From a young Ann has had a love affair with books would read everything she could get her hands on. As Ann grew older, and her hormones kicked in, she discovered bodice ripping Fabio-esque romance novels. They were great at first, but she soon grew tired of the endless stories with a big wonderful emotional buildup to really short and crappy sex. Never a big fan of purple prose, throbbing spears of fleshy pleasure and wet honey pots make her giggle, she sought out books that gave the sex scenes in the story just as much detail and plot as everything else-without using cringe worthy euphemisms. This led her to the wonderful world of Erotic Romance, and she’s never looked back.
Now Ann spends her days trying to tune out cartoons playing in the background to get into her ‘sexy space’ and has accepted that her Muse has a severe case of ADD.
Ann loves to talk with her fans, as long as they realize she’s weird, and that sarcasm doesn’t translate well via text.