Into The Mists – Seven Wardens Book 2 by Skye MacKinnon & Laura Greenwood

Into the Mists
Seven Wardens Book 2
USA Today Bestselling Authors
Laura Greenwood
Skye MacKinnon


A kelpie, an incubus and two wraiths walk into a bar…

Things were going so well until Macey got kidnapped. Again. Except this time, the kidnapper knows exactly why he has her, and none of his plans are good news.

She could wait for her men to save her, but then again, she’s not the kind of Princess who needs a Prince to save the day.

A reverse harem (still) drenched in Scottish mythology. Book 2 in the Seven Wardens series.

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The book opens with Macey and her men visiting Nessie, only it’s not Nessie and it takes a bit for Macey to figure it out. Macey is in a dungeon, the Voice is torturing her. When she wakes, she meets a mouse, Luch. It’s Luch who tells her that Amber is also imprisoned here and not in good shape.

Now the Voice has been torturing Amber far longer than Macey. In the visions the Voice has projected on her a kelpie will kill her. She is sure she will die now and by Macey’s hand.

This is a favorite scene.

“Now, I’m going to go back in there,” Amber continued. “I’m no longer alone and I’m no longer bound. We can fight him together. There’s no point in leaving now while we’re already here.”


Suddenly, the world evaporated. It was like the people around Macey suddenly dissolved into mist and drifted away, leaving her alone. Well, not quite alone.

Amber was by her side. There was nothing else. Not even colour. They were standing on a white floor, but there were no walls, no nothing. Just endless whiteness.

“Amber?” Macey asked carefully, “Are you seeing the same?”

“If you mean a lot of white, then yes. And no Izban.” Her voice was quivering slightly.


“Stop being so dramatic!” Macey shouted, trying to convince both herself and Amber that they needn’t be afraid.

The Voice ignored her.


Mist drifted into the air around them, forming shapes and colours, until they were suddenly back in the courtyard where Macey had first laid eyes upon Amber. She still didn’t know what that girl was, except that she was strong. Incredibly strong.

“I will get out of here, I will get out of here,” Amber began to whisper, a desperate mantra. “I will get out of here. I will…”


Without warning, they were ripped apart, flying through the air until they landed roughly on opposite ends of the courtyard. Ignoring the pain in her limbs, Macey jumped to her feet. She could guess what the Voice was planning next.


A beithir! Finally, Macey knew what Amber was. And it scared her a little. She didn’t know a lot about beithirs except that they could kill in a variety of ways. Their fangs were poisonous, they could control the weather, they could fly and attack you from above. When they shifted, of course. So far, Amber had stayed human, which is why Macey hadn’t figured out her species before. It was hard not to recognise a shifted beithir… there weren’t any other supernaturals that looked like a giant snake.

Amber was still on the ground, weakly trying to get to her feet. She’d expended too much energy; she wasn’t going to be much of a threat.

But… when had reality been taken over by the Voice? Had it been after Amber attacked Macey with lightning? Or before? If it was before… then Amber would still have enough power to do another such attack. And Macey wasn’t sure if she could escape her fate a second time. Had the Voice let them play out their battle in their minds so he could see what was going to happen? Did he want to see how they would escape so he could prevent it from ever happening?

Macey shivered. How was she supposed to fight someone who could play with her perception of what was real and what wasn’t? She was still having trouble believing that she hadn’t just spoken to her men. Were they really coming for her? Was Izban actually able to do a tracking spell, or had that bit been Amber’s wishful thinking?

KILL HER, the Voice repeated and this time, Amber was magically dragged onto her feet by an unseen force. She wavered, but somehow managed to stand. Tiny sparks of lightning began to flicker around the girl’s fingers and Macey prepared for the inevitable.

But wait… she was no longer wearing the copper cuffs. That had to mean that the battle had taken place and their combined power had opened them.

Was the Voice aware of that? Did he want an execution execution or a cat fight?

Amber opened her mouth, but Macey couldn’t hear what she was saying. They were too far apart. Well, that could be rectified.

Macey carefully walked towards Amber, aware that there might be a dangerous surprise waiting at every step. Earlier, there’d been guards lying dead or unconscious all over the courtyard. This time, they were alone.

She shook her head in confusion. There was no way of telling what was real and what wasn’t. Maybe she was still in her cell. Maybe she’d never even met Amber and this was all one giant illusion.

Suddenly, the air in front of her flickered and someone appeared. Someone very familiar with very blue hair.



Amber’s eyes widened as she saw her friend. He didn’t move; he seemed more statue than living being. Macey walked around him and took a closer look.

His eyes were moving but the rest of him wasn’t. His face was an expressionless mask, but his eyes told her of his fear.

She could almost believe that he was real. That he was in danger.

A lightning bolt hit the ground next to her and she jumped back in surprise. Amber seemed to be convinced that Izban was real.

Another bolt of lightning crashed down at Macey’s side, and she almost jumped back. If she was going to have Amber around, then she’d probably better get used to having this happen.

“Amber,” she tried to whisper, but her voice was hoarse, as if from a lack of water. That was odd. Unless there were other side effects of the visions the Voice had given them.

There wasn’t any answer.

Macey steeled herself, then waved her hand through Izban’s still form, completely unsurprised when her hand passed right through him. Another visual trick then.

“Amber, please,” she shouted, the wind that was beginning to rage stealing her words. Potentially the other woman’s doing too. She’d heard that beithirs were storm creatures, not just lightning ones. “He’s not real.”

Her words weren’t having any effect, and one look at the redhead revealed just how bad things were. Her eyes had taken on a crazed look, and there was no doubt about how mad the woman was.

“AMBER!” she shouted even louder, but again, no response.

Sucking in a deep breath, she did the only thing she could think of, and unleashed a ball of water at the girl.

A sharp squeal, followed by a calming in the winds, told her the trick had worked even better than she’d intended.

“What did you do that for?” Amber shouted, venom almost as poisonous as her fangs dripping from her tone.

“He’s not real,” Macey said softly, ignoring the glares she received in return. “Look.” She passed her hand through the still form of the blue-haired man, and Amber’s green eyes widened.

“How do I know he’s not trapped somewhere here?” Her voice cracked as she spoke, and Macey’s heart went out to her. She felt the same way when she thought of her own men in danger, so there was very little doubt in her mind how Amber felt about Izban.

Good job he seemed to feel the same.

“Because I was with him before I was taken,” she replied softly, hoping the Voice wouldn’t be able to hear her whispers, but knowing that hope was likely in vain.

“You were?” Amber perked up at that, and Macey smiled.

“Yes. He was trying to find you.”


Amber sighed. “He’s so demanding,” she tried to joke.

“And throws a lot of tantrums,” Macey added.

“What do we do now?”

“I suppose you try and kill me.”

Maybe not her best idea, but they at least had to pretend for the moment.

“That seems a little counterproductive.”

Macey cracked a smile. She could get used to having Amber around if she was going to make comments like that.

“Just while we think of an actual plan.”

This time, Amber nodded. “Okay, sounds like the best idea we have.”

“Which isn’t saying a lot.”

The red-head laughed. “No, it really doesn’t.”

She took two steps back and squared off against Macey, pushing her sleeves up and readying herself.

“Prepare to die, bitch,” Amber taunted.

“Bring it on,” Macey replied, unable to help the amused smile tugging at her lips. When she knew the other woman wasn’t actually going to be aiming for her, she kind of looked forward to facing off against her. It was just an intense kind of training really. Her men would be happy.

Amber struck first, sending twin bolts of lightning either side of Macey.

Not waiting another moment, Macey summoned mini balls of water, and began juggling them in the air to gain momentum. Then, one after the other, she began to fling them at Amber, making sure each one narrowly missed the girl’s head. Though one did accidentally come too close, luckily, Amber was quick enough to avoid it.

She must be running on adrenaline though. She’d been weak to start with and could only be getting worse by the second.

Maybe that was the Voice’s plan. To wear them out to the point where they were no longer able to even think of fighting back. That way, their minds would be easy to slip into, and he could take whatever control he wanted.

Wasn’t that a cheery thought?

The two women danced around each other, flinging their powers back and forth with increasing ferocity. It was almost a battle of who could conjure the most elaborate piece of magic.

So far, Amber was winning. She’d conjured a massive snake, that probably looked something like her in shifted form, and made it coil around Macey. Being inside the electricity had been invigorating, and all she’d been able to see were the bright sparks coming off it.

Once the snake’s coils had receded, she caught Amber’s eye, trying to ensure the woman would do exactly the same again. Only this time, Macey would add to the power and do…. something. She wasn’t all that sure what, but it was worth a shot.

“When you two are quite done, how about we actually consider getting you out of here?” a soft female voice sounded.
Greenwood, Laura. Seven Wardens Omnibus: Books 1-4 (Seven Wardens Collections) (pp. 278-283). Peryton Press. Kindle Edition.

With the help of a mermaid they get to Scotland and a messenger from Malan is there waiting. Before she would get their men she wanted to meet Nessie, who had thus far been ignoring her. A touch of blackmail if you will. Once reunited with their men, they find they actually have a bit of a time limit to fix everything.

A visit to the Sith and Macey takes on the final warden Air. Some mysterious chairs, a secret revealed, plenty of travel and new folks and just one thing solved.

I love these books, they are creative, sexy and full of suspense and intrigue.

I can’t wait to read the next book in this series.

5 Contented Purrs for Laura and Skye!

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Skye MacKinnon

Skye MacKinnon is a USA Today & International Bestselling Author whose books are filled with strong heroines who don’t have to choose.

She embraces her Scottishness with fantastical Scottish settings and a dash of mythology, no matter if she’s writing about Celtic gods, cat shifters, or the streets of Edinburgh.

When she’s not typing away at her favourite cafe, Skye loves dried mango, as much exotic tea as she can squeeze into her cupboards, and being covered in pet hair by her two bunnies, Emma and Darwin.

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Laura is a USA Today Bestselling Author of paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary romance. When she’s not writing, she can be found drinking ridiculous amounts of tea, trying to resist French Macaroons, and watching the Pitch Perfect trilogy for the hundredth time (at least!)

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Hot SEAL, Confirmed Bachelor – SEALs in Paradise: Wedding Edition Book 6 By Cynthia D’Alba

Hot SEAL, Confirmed Bachelor
SEALs in Paradise: Wedding Edition Book 6
NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Author
Cynthia D’Alba

When a Navy SEAL runs into an obstacle,
he climbs over it, under it,
around it, or destroys it.
So what if it’s a woman?

Master Chief Benjamin Blackwell has it all. Adventure, good looks, skills, and women. His life is perfect and he has no intention of changing a thing. Until her.

Holly Maxwell is a sexy woman unlike anyone he’s met before. A widow for ten years, she’s happy with her life even with the trials of raising a pre-teen daughter, and being the only girl in a nosy, boisterous family of Coronado cops.

But what makes her so inexplicable to this Navy SEAL is her total lack of interest in him.

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Ben ‘C-Note’ Blackwell has a routine when he’s home, and even though he got little sleep after Ensign Davis’ wedding he wasn’t going to deviate from it. A seven mile jog down the beach to his favorite place for breakfast leads to him overhearing an amusing conversation between a mother and daughter. However, it’s as those two were leaving that he sees how tall and lovely the woman is. She acknowledged him and dismissed him, something of an unusual occurrence for him. Under any other circumstance he would pursue her to ask her out, but with the daughter there he couldn’t. Seeing the waves as he jogs home, he makes the decision to go surfing once he finishes up some paperwork on base.

Holly gets another look at Ben after he drags a novice surfer out of the water. She takes charge of the victim but she also notices the woman who calls out to him. Once she is done for the day she joins her family for dinner at which the always unpleasant conversation of a date comes up. This time however Holly insinuates she’s dating someone but refuses to give any more information.

The plan for the evening also includes the first of four monthly bachelorette parties for her brother’s fiancé, Bethany.

When Ben shows up in the bar it didn’t take much to for Holly’s sister-in-law Diana, and Bethany to put two and two together.

This is a favorite scene.

They had just toasted to the moon landing in the sixties when Bethany whistled. “Wow. Remember how I said I’d do Tuck-the-bartender for one-hundred K? Well, check out what just walked in the door. I think I’m going to melt off my seat.”

Diana followed Bethany’s gaze and moaned. “Oh, yeah. He is something. I’m thinking Navy. Maybe SEAL. Patrick would kick my ass for saying this, but Patrick who? That guy is totally yummy.”

Facing the bar put Holly’s back toward the door. She laughed at her tablemates. “Seriously? No guy looks that good.” She turned in her seat and almost dropped her drink in her lap. She whipped back around. “Shit, shit, shit.”

“What’s wrong?” Bethany asked. She studied the guy closer. “Hey, Diana. Does that guy look about six-three?”

“I’d say so.”

“Silver hair. Body to die for?”

“Yep,” Diana said. “Can’t see his eye color, but I’m guessing blue. What about you, Holly?”

“Don’t call him over here,” Holly said.

“Ben!” Bethany yelled. “Ben. Over here.” She giggled. “He’s coming this way. You were right, Holly. He’s totally luscious.”

Holly sprang from her chair and rushed to head him off. When she reached him, she threw her arms around his neck and pulled him close in hug.

“Please play along,” she whispered in his ear. “It’s a long story, and I don’t have time to explain, but we’re dating. Please.”

She pulled back and looked into his eyes. She must have looked pitiful or scared to death, because he nodded.

“Thank you.” She pulled his mouth down to hers for a kiss. A kiss that should have been a quick peck of lips to lips. Instead his large hands caught her waist and he pulled her tight for a long, tongue-thrusting kiss that made her knees go wobblily.

When it ended, she patted her hair and cleared her throat. “Thank you,” she said again.

“You might want to tell me your name if we’re dating.” His blue—thank goodness—eyes twinkled. His full lips smiled and she had to hold onto his arms to stay upright.

“Right, right. Holly. Holly Maxwell.” “Well, nice to meet you, lifeguard Holly Maxwell,” he said with a slight smirk.

He remembered her. Of course, he would. She’d been a total bitch at the beach, but it’d been her first day on the job as a seasonal worker and she’d felt like she had to prove herself to the other lifeguards on duty.

She wrapped an arm around his waist.

He dropped a heavy, muscular arm over her shoulder and walked with her to the table. Her heart was a sledgehammer beating her ribs. Her rubbery legs could barely support her weight. She plastered on a smile with quivering lips.

“Well, I guess you’ve figured out who this this,” she said as they walked up to the table. It was only then she realized she didn’t know his name. Oh, she’d heard the incredible creature in the teeny, tiny bikini call him Ben, but she’d been in the middle of CPR. Had she even heard that correctly?

“Ladies,” he said. “I’m Benjamin Blackwell. Apparently, Holly has kept me a secret.”

Bethany and Diana sat straighter in their chairs, their eyes wide as they stared.

“Diana.” She held out her hand. “I’m Holly’s sister-in-law.”

He took it and kissed her knuckles.

“I’m Bethany McQuiston.” She extended her hand. “I’m engaged to Holly’s brother Lawrence. This is my bachelorette party.”

He did the same knuckle kiss, and Bethany giggled.

“Congratulations,” he said. “Lucky groom. Is the wedding this weekend?”

“Oh, no,” Bethany said with a laugh. “It’s in September, but a girl only gets married once. No one said how many bachelorette parties she can have leading up to it, right?”

He laughed. “You do have a point. Well, I don’t want to intrude on the festivities.” He squeezed Holly’s shoulder. “Have a seat, honey.” He helped her back into her chair. “I’ve been out of country this week and forgot you were planning on being here. Sorry.”

“Out of the country?” Bethany asked.

“SEAL. We had a quick in-and-out mission this week. Okay, I’ll let you ladies get back to the celebrations. Take care of my gal.” He kissed Holly’s temple. “Have fun.”

It was all Holly could do to not roll her eyes. He’d poured it on a little thick, in her opinion. Still, the other two ladies were eyeing him dreamily.

“Okay,” Holly said. “Go on. Let the women drink in peace.”

He grinned, and a ripple of electricity rolled through her. She would bet her last dollar that smile had dropped more panties to the floor than a bathroom toilet.
D’Alba, Cynthia. Hot SEAL, Confirmed Bachelor: A Standalone Navy SEAL / Military Romance / Family Romance (SEALs in Paradise) (pp. 36-40). Riante, Inc. Kindle Edition.

The tangled web gets even more involved as this story progresses. Holly’s brothers all have something to say, and there may have been a competition of a sort. However, Holly’s daughter and her mother approve of Ben.

I did a lot of laughing in between the getting to know you and the sizzle. Such a fun read!

I can’t wait to read the next offering in this multi-author series!

5 Contented Purrs for Cynthia!

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Coming Soon!

Cynthia d'Alba Cynthia D’Alba

Hi Y’All! I’m Cynthia D’Alba from Arkansas.Here’s a little about me…New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Cynthia D’Alba started writing on a challenge from her husband in 2006 and discovered having imaginary sex with lots of hunky men was fun.

She was born and raised in a small Arkansas town. After being gone for a number of years, she’s thrilled to be making her home back in Arkansas living in a vine-covered cottage on the banks of an eight-thousand acre lake. When she’s not reading or writing or plotting, she’s doorman for her two dogs, cook, housekeeper and chief bottle washer for her husband and slave to a noisy, messy parrot. She loves to chat online with friends and fans.

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D’Alba Diamonds Street Team

Avenging Victoria – Special Forces: Operation Alpha – Counterstrike Book 3 By Cara Carnes

Avenging Victoria
Special Forces: Operation Alpha
Counterstrike Book 3
Cara Carnes


Law and order is in her blood and she bleeds blue…

FBI Agent Victoria Blevins has devoted her career to upholding the law and never shies away from a challenge. When her latest assignment leaves her wounded, on the run, and alone in a foreign country while investigating a potential leak in the Diaz cartel task force, she puts her trust in one man who can keep her alive—even if he cuts corners and the law. He may not shade within the lines, but he’s dedicated and true…

Billionaire Milo Davenport walked away from his Delta team and founded Counterstrike to help domestic violence victims who needed help fighting people like his own brutal father. A caretaker of an elaborate underground network, he’s vowed to safeguard its existence from everyone, especially governmental authorities like the FBI. But when the one woman he wants most is in danger, he’ll do anything to protect her—even if she’s someone he has no business trusting.

Figuring out who betrayed her is simple. Navigating the secrets between them is a mission neither of them are prepared for but both will do anything to accomplish.

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Another witness is dead and the Agent in Charge wants the name and location of Victoria’s witness. She can’t give up this woman and her child no matter what. Victoria trusts no one as she takes her files and crosses the parking lot to her car. She has a biometric safe in the trunk and as she secures the files she pulls her weapon. She’s being watched. She sends the email regarding her investigation to Milo and the Arsenal, takes out her attackers but has been darted, the drug is starting through her system, meant to get answers not kill. She knows she’s in trouble and calls Milo who patches in Edge.

This is a favorite scene.

It wasn’t a lot of time, but Milo knew the woman worked impossible situations all the time.

Hang on, Tory. I’m coming.

His cell rang. He clicked answer after the first ring when he saw Victoria’s name flash across the screen. “Victoria?”

“Milo.” Her low, slow voice cast dread in his gut. “Someone attacked, hit me with a dart. I got away, but I’m…”

“Victoria, where are you?”


“Pull over. I’m adding Edge to this call. We’ll find a safe place for you to hunker down until I can get down there. Hold on, baby.” He clicked the add button on the screen and patched Edge in without waiting for a response.

His pulse quickened. The vehicle accelerated as Chatter gripped the steering wheel tighter. “Edge. Victoria’s on the call. Someone attacked. She got away, but she was darted.”

“Victoria?” Edge asked. “Are you being followed?”

“I think so. I see headlights. He may not have been alone.”

It’d been years since he’d been in Colombia, but he knew the area around the embassy well. Narrow, windy roads and steep drop offs were a hazard— one an injured, drugged woman shouldn’t be driving, especially if someone was chasing her.

“He?” Milo asked, hating the fear in her voice.

“She sent an image,” Mary, aka the Edge, answered. “He’s a local thug for hire, works mostly with the Diaz cartel from what HERA has pulled.

“Great,” Victoria muttered. “I can’t drive faster. They’re gaining on me.”

“You can’t remain in that vehicle. I have satellite images of the area you’re in pulled up. Speed up so that when you pass the next curve, they can’t see you. Can you do that?”

“Okay. I’m not going to be awake much longer. Get Teresa secure if they take me. I won’t talk. Just keep her safe.”

“That’s not happening,” Milo growled. “They aren’t touching you. Tell me you have a plan, Edge.”

Horrors he’d witnessed while in Delta ricocheted in his brain, each one an unwanted yet potential scenario Victoria could find herself in if she was captured. How many people had he recovered while in the service?

He couldn’t let her endure any of that. There had to be a solution, some way to keep her safe until he could get down there.

“It’s not good, but it’s all we can do for now. Victoria, when you come to the next curve, I need you to jump from the car and let it drive over the cliff.”

Was she serious? What the hell? Milo stifled the rage rumbling through him.

“You’ll need to hide in the overgrown vegetation you find there until they leave.”

“That’s not a plan, it’s suicide,” Milo clipped.

“She’s drugged. If we’re lucky, they’ll assume she passed out and went over the cliff. We’ll be even luckier if the car explodes when it impacts with the ground. Either way, they won’t hang around. I activated the embassy’s alarms and put the van’s information into their system. They’ll be hunting for it.”

Milo didn’t question how the woman had managed all that remotely. He’d learned long ago to never ask questions because the answers were so far above his technical know-how, he never understood them anyway.

Silence descended, followed quickly by pained moans and rustling. Dread clawed his insides as he listened, hoping to hear Victoria’s voice. Heavy breathing and grunts filled the vehicle.

“Airport,” Milo said, glaring over at Chatter, who thankfully offered no argument. “Get the pilot ready. We’re going now. Victoria?”

“I’m here. I’m here.” She repeated the statement several more times before silence descended. “I think I’m hidden. My left foot isn’t doing well.”

“You did good,” Edge said. “Stay still and quiet. I’ll let you know when the van pulls away. Patrol cars are almost there, so they should leave very soon.”

“I can’t trust locals. Or anyone,” Victoria said. “They can’t know I’m here. Someone set me up.”

“Milo is on his way to you. It’ll take a few hours, but he will be there. I’ve already diverted a team to your location. They’ll secure you until he arrives.”

“A team?” Victoria asked.

“They aren’t Arsenal. We didn’t have anyone in the location. I’m cutting some big corners here to get help to you.”

“Corner cutting is good,” Victoria whispered. “I’m sorry.”

“Sorry?” Edge asked.

“I’m sorry I dragged you and Milo into this. I didn’t know who I could trust. I knew he could help Teresa if I got her stateside.” Moans filled gaps between each word she spoke. What other injuries had the brave woman incurred falling out of a moving car after being drugged?

“Hang tight. We’ll get you safe. Then we’ll get some answers,” Edge said. “They’re at the cliff now. The car is on fire but hasn’t exploded. Stay quiet. I’ll let you know when they’re gone.”

Just because they left now didn’t mean she was safe. They’d likely circle back, after the authorities Edge had dispatched were gone. Son of a bitch.

Someone set me up.

They’d pay.

She’d trusted him to help. He wouldn’t fail her.

“Who are you sending, Edge?”

“A Delta team was a couple hours away, heading back to base. Their mission is done. Now they have another one,” Mary said.

“That’s more than a small corner cut.” It was more like a straight carving few could pull off. Milo knew The Arsenal had a huge network, though. Delta.

Milo didn’t know who was on the team but, as a former Delta, he knew they’d keep her safe. Hang on, Tory. I’m coming for you.
Cara Carnes. Avenging Victoria (Special Forces: Operation Alpha): Counterstrike, Book 3 (Kindle Locations 483-530). Aces Press, LLC.

From the moment the Delta Team Edge diverts reaches Tory, things start to heat up. Milo arrives soon after they have Tory secured and then they have to get her witness.

I love the way Edge and her crew managed to get the Delta team diverted and that it was the new Delta team was even more fun. A supercharged game of hide and seek ensues as they keep Tory and her witness safe and the investigation continues.

Plenty of suspense, intrigue, action and a romance that sizzles right from the start.

5 Contented Purrs for Cara!

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Cara Carnes

Born in small-town Texas, Cara Carnes was a princess, a pirate, fashion model, actress, rock star and Jon Bon Jovi’s wife all before the age of 13. In reality, her fascination for enthralling worlds took seed somewhere amidst a somewhat dull day job and a wonderful life filled with family and friends. When she’s not cemented to her chair, Cara loves traveling, photography and reading.

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Protecting Freedom – Special Forces: Operation Alpha – Search and Rescue Book 4 by Jen Talty

Protecting Freedom
Special Forces: Operation Alpha
Search and Rescue Book 4
USA Today Bestselling Author
Jen Talty


Katina Freedom made a huge mistake when she’d been sixteen and she’s been paying for it ever since. However, she’d paid her debt to society and all she wanted to do was ease back into the community, get a job, and live a quiet life without drawing any attention to herself.

She’d managed to turn her life around and even found herself a boyfriend. A good man. A man she could love.
Only, it seemed fate had other ideas for her and now she has to choose between the past and the future.

Parker “Baby” Roman is tired of playing the field. He might be young, but he’s ready to settle down and have a family and he has his sights set on the sexy, but aloof hostess of his favorite local water hole.

But Baby is ill-prepared to find out the woman of his dreams is a convicted felon and being with her could ruin his career. However, he’ll have to set all that aside when Katina’s life is on the line. He’ll do what it takes, but then he’ll have to let her go.

Or will he do what is in his heart?

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Katina has served her time and was even able to get a degree. She’s just making ends meet so any additional shift she can get at Sans is a plus. This shift started better than most when her boss Clover offers her the position of day manager. The position is one she can ill afford to pass up, not many places give convicted felons a chance.

Parker ‘Baby’ Roman is thinking it’s time to settle down and the woman he has in his sights is Katina. There’s something about her that very much appeals to him and it’s not just her looks. He just needs to convince her to go out with him. While he does manage that, it’s Katina who plans the date.

Although she almost didn’t go, she talks herself into it and of course not everything goes well. Especially when an ex of Baby’s makes an appearance as they wait for their table.

This is a favorite scene.

“I’m not picky. Wine is wine. Whatever the happy hour special is will work just fine, thanks.” She climbed up on the stool while he ordered her drink.

“Did you get all caught up on your sleep?”

“I did and I also managed to get all my laundry done and binge-watch a new show. I’d say all in all the last two days have been quite productively relaxing.”

She laughed as the bartender set her drink down.

“Cheers.” Baby held up his beer. “To a great first date.”

She clanked her glass and sipped. “That implies there will be a second. I haven’t agreed to that.”

He tilted his head. “Are you going to shoot me down before we even get off the ground?”

“No. But let’s see how this night goes before we call it a first.”

“Fair enough.”

“Baby?” A tall blond with very large breasts slinked over and looped her arm around his shoulders. “Awe, who put Baby in a corner?”

He rolled his eyes and shrugged, successfully removing her slippery fingers from his body.

Christ. How the hell could Katina be jealous already? How stupid was that?

“Hi, Haley,” Baby said.

“What are you doing here?” Haley asked. “I’ve been trying to reach you.”

“I was on a mission and just got back a couple of days ago,” he said.

“And before that?” Haley asked, leaning closer, pressing her fake, extra large tits against his arm.

“Busy.” He shifted farther away.

“Haley, this is Katina, my date,” he said.

“Oh. I see.” Haley pursed her lips and patted his chest. “Always on the prowl,” she said with disdain dripping from every word.

“And you’re always causing trouble,” Baby said.

“It’s a gift.” She did a little curtsey. “We need to talk. We have unfinished business.”

Katina so wanted to tell this woman to fuck off, but she’d refrain.

For now.

“I don’t think we do,” Baby said with a narrowed stare. “I think you should go. I’d like to get back to my date.”

“You owe me at least a conversation,” Haley said. “Considering all that we’ve been through.”

“Even if he does, now is not the time.” Katina picked at her thumbnail. So much for keeping her mouth shut.

Haley looked Katina up and down with a scrutinizing glare. “So, you and Baby, huh? How long have you been seeing each other?” She planted her hand on her hip and pushed it out to the side, making her big, fake boobs jiggle. “Because I doubt it’s been very long.”

“Haley, let’s not do this, okay?” Baby set his beer down. “Don’t make me be a jerk.”

“I don’t have to make you act like an asshole when it comes to women, because you are one. I just want to know if there was any crossover between me and this chick.” She reached between them and snagged a bar menu.

“We were never a couple, Haley,” Baby said.

“You look like a nice girl, so be prepared for a couple of nice dates and in a couple of weeks, or his next mission, be prepared to be dumped.”

Katina laughed.

“What’s so funny?” Haley asked.

“He’s the one who should be worried about being dumped. I’m only using him for his really large dick. When I’m bored, I’ll move on.”

Baby spit his beer out, spewing it across the bar.

Haley gasped. “You two deserve each other,” she said under her breath as she stomped off.

“I can’t believe you just said that.”

She couldn’t believe that she had to force her gaze from diverting to below the belt simply because Haley hadn’t made some ridiculous retort about the size of the man’s penis. Of course, Katina struggled with the idea she even said it, but that was a different story entirely.

“Me neither, but she was being a bitch and you didn’t deserve that.”
Jen Talty. Protecting Freedom: Search and Rescue Series (Special Forces Operation Alpha) (Kindle Locations 253-286).

Other than a flat tire the rest of the date goes well and Katina agrees to a second. However there is one very important thing Baby doesn’t know about her and she knows she has to tell him.

Katina’s hand gets force when a sleazy reporter shows up at Sans, she knows she’ll have to tell Baby about her record, and hope they continue their budding relationship. His threats and innuendos are blatant, she has nothing to do with her parents and she certainly doesn’t know where any inheritance her grandparents left might be.

Un fortunately Baby hears it first from Haley and the reporter, but he isn’t even a little put off by it. Although, he does call Tex for more information.

For the moment the reporter shows up things take a twist, and some very interesting occurrences lead to some action and suspense. I love the way this relationship grows and heats up. Katina’s limited knowledge leads to some very funny passages as well.

I can’t wait to see if Jen writes more in this multi-author crossover series.

5 Contented Purrs for Jen!

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Jen Talty

Welcome to my World! I’m a USA Today Bestseller of Romantic Suspense, Contemporary Romance, and Paranormal Romance.

I first started writing while carting my kids to one hockey rink after the other, averaging 170 games per year between 3 kids in 2 countries and 5 states. My first book, IN TWO WEEKS was originally published in 2007. In 2010 I helped form a publishing company (Cool Gus Publishing) with NY Times Bestselling Author Bob Mayer where I ran the technical side of the business through 2016.

I’m currently enjoying the next phase of my life…the empty NESTER! My husband and I spend our winters in Jupiter, Florida and our summers in Rochester, NY. We have three amazing children who have all gone off to carve out their places in the world, while I continue to craft stories that I hope will make you readers feel good and put a smile on your face.

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Releasing Tomorrow!!! Hangovers and Holidays – Untouchable Book 5 By Heather Long

Hangovers and Holidays
Untouchable Book 5
USA Today Bestselling Author
Heather Long


You know, I never imagined having one boyfriend much less four. Jake, Archie, Coop, and Ian are still my best friends. They’re also even more entrenched in my life than I ever imagined. They’ve been my rocks, but I’m not the only one with issues.

We’re fighting our way to a new normal. I’m in therapy. Ian and I are dating. Archie introduced me to his grandfather. Both Coop and Jake’s moms refer to me as their son’s girlfriend. I don’t know how much our parents know about our relationship, but I also don’t care.

Not anymore.

The holidays are here and we’re halfway through the year. Everyone wants a piece of us. We’ve survived so much. We’ve been trying to figure out who we can be amidst all the drama and sabotage surrounding us. Now we have to figure out who we can be period.

That starts with us.

It starts now.

This is a reverse harem and the author suggests you always read the forward in her books. Contains some bullying elements, mature situations, and is recommended for 17+. This is the fifth in a series and the story will continue through future books.

If you haven’t read the other books in this series STOP now and go read them. This book starts off where ‘Whispers and Wishes’ leaves off.

Ian and Frankie had gone outside to talk while the other guys get in line to get water. Who has a cash bar at a party? The amount of time that passes worries them and they head outside only to hear a scream. As you can imagine, the scene that unfolds is chaotic and the police get involved as well. Rachel is with Frankie as she answers questions from the detective.

This is a favorite scene.

“Ian and I were talking. We were minding our own business, when Mitch and the guys walked up on us. Mitch said he’d been looking for us, and Ian got in front of me. The next thing I know, there’s a bag over my head and someone is yanking me backwards over that railing.” My back still hurt from where I’d scraped over the wooden railing. “You know, before it got broken. Anyway, I was struggling against someone, and I could hear them hitting Ian. Then someone knocked the guy away from me, and I hit the ground pretty hard.”

Probably going to bruise from that impact, too. That just added a fresh log to the anger burning away in my gut.

“Um, I got the bag off my head, and there were fights everywhere— there were a lot of guys piling onto Ian. Coop and Jake were trying to help get them off. Then Sharon— she tried to hit me, ran at me from out of nowhere. I ended up hitting her with my cast, broke her nose.” I almost smirked, but I swallowed it back.

Rachel didn’t bother. “Damn good hit.”

Yeah, I wasn’t sure that was the help I needed at the moment, but I spared her a faint smile, and she grinned.

“She deserved it.”

Hell yes, she had. “Anyway… then Archie was there trying to pull me out of it, ‘cause another guy was running at me.”

“Jimmy Trainer,” Rachel supplied. “He didn’t make it ‘cause I pepper sprayed his happy ass and put him down. The last thing she needs is to get hit again.” Pride resonated in her voice.

“Yeah you did.” We shared another grin, then looked at Talbot who, while not smiling, did manage to look a bit amused. “Then the cops showed up and started arresting everyone, including Ian and Jake. They were the ones being assaulted and shouldn’t have been arrested.”

Raising his hands, Talbot said, “I understand that, but there was a lot of property damage and injuries. We’re going to sort this all out. Is there anything else I need to know?”

“You mean like the fact that Mitch already assaulted her once, and you assholes haven’t actually charged him with anything?” Rachel demanded. “He drugged her, broke her wrist, tried to rape her…”

“Rachel,” I said, and she frowned, fiercely, but went quiet.

“That’s an ongoing investigation, Ms. Manning,” Talbot told her, but he gave me an apologetic look. “Did you feel threatened tonight?”


“Did he touch you in any way?”

“Tonight?” I shook my head. “Ian didn’t let him get anywhere near me.” I actually had no idea who dragged me off the porch. I was pretty sure he was one of the unconscious guys they’d loaded onto stretchers. No regrets there. I hope he hurt a lot when he woke up.


“Okay, but did you feel threatened by him?”

“He showed up and said he’d been looking for me and Ian specifically, and he was pissed. So yeah, I felt threatened.” What a stupid question.

Talbot didn’t comment on my sarcasm, he just made a few more notes, then said, “Do you feel you may have antagonized him in any way?”

Was he serious right now? “I haven’t seen him since Homecoming.” My gut churned. “But then again, I didn’t antagonize him that night either.”

He gave me a small smile. “I have to ask these questions, Ms. Curtis. I understand they’re uncomfortable.”

“Do you?” Rachel demanded, and I nudged her lightly with my elbow. I appreciated her defense, but I really didn’t want this to take any longer than it already had.

“Actually, I do. Now it’s my understanding you have a restraining order in place for Mr. Hooper.” Hooper? Was that Mitch’s last name? A part of me felt like I should know that, but I honestly didn’t know him beyond the fact that he was on the football team with Ian and Jake.

“Um… probably? Mr. Wittaker was taking care of a lot of things for me.” It sounded like something he would do.

“Can you give me his information?” Talbot’s tone had changed to something far more solicitous. “If the restraining order is in place, then Mr. Hooper violated it tonight.”

Well, whoop-de-doo. “Does that mean you’ll do something about him?”

He sighed. “Ms. Curtis— can I call you Frankie?”

“Yeah, that’s fine.”

“Thank you, I’m Rick.” He waited a beat, so I nodded to acknowledge what he’d said, and he continued, “I understand how difficult it is to think we’re sitting on our hands and not doing anything. I wish investigations in real life were as fast as they are on television, but there’s a process. We’re going through the process. You’ve done everything right. You made your statements. You released your medical findings. You told us you wanted to press charges. These are all important steps. I know it’s a lot to ask for your patience, but we do need it right now.”

“And if he shows up again?” Because he’d done it once. Twice if you counted Homecoming. At this point, I never wanted to go to a party again. So far, they’d all sucked.

“We’re going to work on that so he doesn’t.”

I sighed.

Movement beyond him had me shifting my weight. Archie was on his way straight toward me with Mr. Wittaker. Where was Coop?

“My lawyer is here.”

“He is?” Talbot turned as Archie and Mr. Wittaker got there. Mr. Wittaker didn’t waste any time introducing himself, shaking Talbot’s hand, and drawing him away from me and Rachel.

Rachel let me go when Archie wrapped his arms around me. “You okay, babe?”

“No,” I said. “I’m really fucking mad.”

He grinned a little. “That’s my girl. Hold onto that, ‘cause it’s going to be a long night.”

That was what I was afraid of. “Did Coop get arrested too?”

“Detained. They’re taking him to the precinct, too. There was blood on his clothes.”

Rachel snorted. “Of course there was blood on his clothes. Did they not see the carnage out here?” Thankfully, she didn’t shout the words, but Archie just shook his head.

“It’s procedure. They probably won’t be charged. All of it is self-defense. They’re also going to have to get Bubba looked at. He had a lot of guys whaling on him.”

My stomach bottomed out. Jake wasn’t eighteen. They were probably going to call his mom. He’d gotten hauled down to the precinct a month ago. “We need to go get them.”

“We’re going to,” Archie said. “I’ve got Jake’s keys, so we’re going to take his car. Mr. Wittaker is going to meet us there as soon as he takes care of the detective.”

“I’m going to go get Skylar and take her home,” Rachel said. “Then I’ll meet you guys at the police station.”


“I want to,” she told me. “Besides… you know the after party is always more fun than the party itself.”

I snorted, then pulled away from Archie to give Rachel a hug. “You’re a badass.”

“Yes, I am,” she agreed, squeezing me gently, but she didn’t miss my wince. “And you need to get looked at, too.”

Suddenly, Archie was in my space. “Did they hurt you?”

“Bruises.” But I didn’t really get to object as he hauled me toward the paramedics. I glared at Rachel, and she blew me a kiss.

Every once in a while, I remembered why we’d had a love-hate relationship for so long. I just stuck my tongue out at her before I flipped her off, and she finger-waved as she strolled back toward the house where Corey Kaplan was getting reamed out by his parents.

Yeah, this hadn’t been a good night for anyone.
Heather Long. Hangovers and Holidays: Untouchable Book Five (Kindle Locations 270-332).

Let me say it now, I love Rachel and even the guys are starting to like her.

My heart definitely belongs to Archie though, he just keeps doing the right things. This book takes us through Thanksgiving, OMG the food! Three dinners, Coop’s Mom, Jake’s Mom and Ian Parents all cook up feasts for the day that Frankie has to indulge in. By the time she’s finished at Ian’s she’s almost in a food coma and that leads to a perfect scene for those two.

It’s Archie who does the almost impossible and surprises Frankie with a trip. With Rachel’s help she even has the right clothing for it. Jeremy is taking care of her cats promising to spoil them and shipping the presents. Snow, Christmas Trees, Skiing, Snowball fights, Hot tubs and edibles, it doesn’t get better than this!

A wonderful, fun-filled, romantic, sensuous and all in all a spectacular vacation for Jake, Coop, Ian, Frankie and Archie. I loved every single page of this book as this relationship forms into what it will be.

I really can’t wait for the next book as they return home for the final months of school.

5 Contented Purrs for Heather!

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Coming Soon!

Brazen and Breathless

Heather Long Heather Long

USA Today bestselling author, Heather Long, likes long walks in the park, science fiction, superheroes, Marines, and men who aren’t douche bags. Her books are filled with heroes and heroines tangled in romance as hot as Texas in the summertime.

From paranormal historical westerns to contemporary military romance, Heather might switch genres, but one thing is true in all of her stories–her characters drive the books.

When she’s not wrangling her menagerie of animals, she devotes her time to family and friends she considers family. She believes if you like your heroes so real you could lick the grit off their chest, and your heroines so likable, you’re sure you’ve been friends with women just like them, you’ll enjoy her worlds as much as she does.

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Hunter’s Mate – Canyon Springs Book 2 by Becca Jameson

Hunter’s Mate
Canyon Springs Book 2
USA Today Bestselling Author


The small town of Canyon Springs, Colorado, is filled with warm, welcoming people and breathtaking views. Is that why visitors often decide to stay for the rest of their lives? Or is it something else?

Layla doesn’t believe any of the nonsense her grandmother filled her head with growing up. There’s no way that shifters have the ability to entice humans into their world through some sort of coercion. The woman was simply prejudice. The concept is nonsense.

So, Layla isn’t concerned about making the trip to Canyon Springs to settle her estranged aunt’s estate. In fact, she’s hoping to meet her first shifter and find out if they really are larger, sexier, and more tempting. The truth is that Layla is a starving actress, and she needs a change.

She’s not, however, prepared to meet Hunter and put all her beliefs to the test. He’s everything she hoped for and then some. It would seem he’s also doing exactly what her grandmother warned her about—luring her into his lair. Her libido is on overdrive. Her heart is in danger too.

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This is Layla and Hunter’s story, it intertwines with the story told in ‘Caleb’ but adding more details and a different point of view. From the initial meeting in the only bar in town, to the meeting in the lawyer’s office, the one that Caleb and Hunter share the reaction is basically the same. Shock and anger from Layla and Elena and devastation from Caleb and Hunter.

This is a favorite scene.

Hunter drew in a long deep breath as he stepped around the side of Marge’s house, looking for Layla. Not only was she exactly where he’d expected, but she was bent over at the waist, pulling weeds from Marge’s flowerbed, her fucking hot ass in the air.

She had changed from earlier. When she’d entered the law office, she’d been wearing a fantastic black dress that hugged all her curves and black pumps. Professional but sexy. He was beginning to think she owned a dozen such black dresses, and he was fine with that.

He’d wanted to grab her by the waist, pull her against his chest, and kiss her right then and there.

That wasn’t what happened, however. The meeting he’d expected to last a few hours, going over Marge’s will and her wishes, had never gotten started.

It turned out Layla and Elena were not impressed to find out neither Hunter nor Caleb had mentioned a word last night about being Marge’s attorneys. Of course, Hunter should have known it wouldn’t go over well. Obviously when Layla had explained to him why she was in town, he’d known immediately that these two women were the ones his new office manager had sent the certified letters to.

Prior to that, it hadn’t occurred to Hunter for one second that the woman he’d seen out jogging might be one of Marge’s nieces. He had not known specifically when they would be arriving.

Rayanne, their office manager, had only been with them two weeks. Their previous office manager had left them when she got pregnant with her third child. Rayanne had entered the meeting for Saturday morning into the calendar as “new clients.” Thus the comedy of errors that led to Hunter’s shock when he realized who Layla was.

The fact that he hadn’t set her straight last night? Well, he would have to chalk that up to poor judgement. Or not. That all depended on how long it took him to grovel.

Hunter was still trying to figure out what to say when Layla suddenly shot to standing and spun around. He was a little surprised she’d sensed him, though he shouldn’t have been.

Layla threw a hand over her chest. “Jesus. You scared me.”

“Sorry.” He inched closer. Damn, she was cute. The black dress had been traded for khaki shorts and a yellow tank top. She had on flipflops too. Her light blond hair was piled on top of her head in a haphazard bun.

She made his heart stop.

For a moment, she stared at him, her gaze roaming up and down his body. He’d changed too. Jeans, white T-shirt, tennis shoes. He wished he could climb into her brain and read her thoughts.

“You’re relentless,” she stated.

He smiled. “Yes. When it matters.”

She rolled her eyes. “Please don’t start spouting some shit about you and I belonging together or something. I can’t take it.”

“Okay.” He could do that. He would do whatever it took to get her to let him in. Let him spend time with her. That’s all he needed. Time. She would see. She had to. There were no other options.

Already it would be horrifying if she denied him and left town. He thought of Anders Johansen and all the years that man had spent pining… He shook that thought from his head. It hit too close to home.

“That’s it? Okay? You failed to tell me you were not just a lawyer, but the one handling my aunt’s estate. What did you think would happen when we showed up this morning?”

He drew in a breath. “I didn’t think it through well. I’m sorry. Please just… let me help.”

“Help? With what?” “The house. The will. Whatever you need.” He glanced at the flowers. “I can pull weeds.” He didn’t think he’d ever pulled a weed in his life, but he assumed that was what she was doing.

She closed her eyes and tipped her head back, groaning toward the sky.

He stepped closer. “Why, exactly, did you decide to start with the flowerbeds?”

She startled when she lowered her gaze and found him in her space. She drew in a breath and flinched. A part of her knew. Knew what the two of them were to each other. She could argue and deny it, but he had to assume eventually she would cave. “The inside of the house felt overwhelming. Marge was a packrat. I needed some air. So, I came out here. The flowers called to me I guess.”

He lifted a hand and stroked her cheek where a smudge of dirt had settled. “You jog. You pull weeds. I’m going to assume you prefer the outdoors.”

“Always.” She tipped her face into his palm, though he wasn’t sure she realized it. “I breathe better when I’m outside.”

“See, this is why I like to shift and go for a long run in the mountains. I can breathe better.”

“That must be amazing. I’m jealous actually. Why bother to run in human form?”

“Because I have to keep up my human body too. It’s like I’m two different beings. My wolf is strong, but the two of us need balance.”

“It’s a lot to take in. I mean I knew shifters existed, but never having met one, I didn’t think much about it. Are there like rules or something? Can I see you in your wolf form?”

“Of course. Any time. No rules. We simply try to lie low and not scare the hell out of people. We don’t shift and wander around town. We don’t shift in front of strangers. We’re careful. But you can watch. I’d love that.”

She nodded slowly. He could see her uncertainty, and he couldn’t blame her. It was natural. Seeing a man shift into a full-grown wolf was shocking at first. He certainly didn’t want to freak her out. “I promise we are mostly regular people. I’m certain you have actually met shifters before. You just didn’t realize it. We’re all over the place. Even in Los Angeles.”

Layla swallowed and glanced at the house. “Did Caleb come with you?”

“Yes. He’s inside with Elena, assuming she didn’t shut the door in his face.” Hunter winced.

“Can’t speak for her. She might have. She has a soft heart, but she doesn’t let herself get run over.”

Hunter stepped closer. Inches separated their bodies. He slid his hand around to her neck. “What about you? Do you have a soft heart too?”

She shook her head and tipped her face back. “Not like her. I try to harden myself against disappointment so that when it comes, I can brush it off.”

“I’ll try not to disappoint you,” he murmured.

She swallowed.
Becca Jameson. Hunter’s Mate: Canyon Springs, Book Two (Kindle Locations 671-722). Becca Jameson Publishing.

I really love the groveling Hunter does and the not quite meeting up with Caleb and Elena. There is much for Hunter to tell Layla but he’d rather do it on his home turf. Including doing the shift she wants to see.

Fun and romantic with lots of twists and turns, secrets revealed, sizzling heat and so much more! I can’t wait to see what Becca has in store for us in this series.

5 Contented Purrs for Becca!

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Becca Jameson Becca Jameson

Becca Jameson currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband, two kids, and the various pets that wander through.

After editing for about five years she recently started writing. She is loving the journey, dabbling in various genres.

When not writing or editing she can usually be found taxiing kids to and from their activities, scrapbooking, and reading!

Late at night she can usually be found sequestered in her office creating fantasy with a glass of red wine and a bar of dark chocolate.

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Galen’s Gemma – Heroes for Hire Book 23 by Dale Mayer

Galen’s Gemma
Heroes for Hire Book 23
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


Galen had plans to kick back and relax, but Levi needs someone to help out Zack, a friend of his. When Levi asks Galen, he’s game. There’s a little too much sugary sweet true love going on at the compound for him and his single state to handle. Then he meets Gemma and her sister, the real reason Zack was looking for help.

Gemma learned a long time ago how to handle her sister and her niece. When the two end up in deep trouble, Gemma drops everything and takes charge. But it’s dangerous, and she needs help. Galen wasn’t what she had in mind, but her heart is open and willing. Her body? Well, it’s good to go when a meet-and-greet leads to love at first sight.

Only the situation is dangerous, and she has to stay focused—until the truth comes out, and she finds out what’s really at stake.

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One of the best parts of this book is when Ice comes out to give Galen his assignment. We get to see just a bit of how her pregnancy is going.

Zack is a contact that Levi and Ice want to work with and he has a problem. Well technically it’s not his problem, but the woman involved is like a little sister to him. Since Harrison has to do some more behind the scenes work on the Museum thing, Galen is the best choice to head out to Germany.

Zack and Galen hit it off pretty well, but find their quarry is gone.

Gemma’s brother-in-law Joe has been murdered and her sister Rebecca is in denial big time. Their house had been broken into and Rebecca keeps insisting it was simply a burglary gone wrong. Gemma knows better and her priority is to keep Rebecca and her daughter Becky safe. She knows it’s going to get dangerous and she’s going to need help. For now though they need to get to Joe’s cabin, get a bit of rest before continuing on.

Gemma isn’t pleased to find Rebecca has called Zack while she was getting gas. She wasn’t happy to find he wasn’t alone either or that they would meet up with them at Joe’s cabin.

This is a favorite scene.

Galen looked at Zack and grinned. “I like her.”

Zack snorted. “You would. She’s always been clear about right and wrong.”

“Like how? It would be nice if someone around here liked me,” Rebecca complained. “You like me, Zack, don’t you?”

He nodded affectionately. “Yep, but I’ve known you for a decade.”

“Right,” she said sadly. “How come we didn’t get together?”

“Don’t know,” he said cheerfully. “It just wasn’t right for us.”

“Maybe it is now,” she said, looking at him thoughtfully.

Galen was interested to see Zack’s reaction. He just shook his head. Galen still didn’t understand their relationship, but he’d choose Gemma over Rebecca any day. Hell, he’d love to spend some time to get to know Gemma better.

“You’re the little sister I never had,” Zack said. “We’ll keep it at that.”

She nodded glumly. “I wish Joe wasn’t dead.”

Galen had to admit he didn’t think she cared about Joe being gone because she loved and missed him but more that he’d been there looking after her and now she didn’t know what to do. She had pretty much alienated her sister from what he could see. The relationship definitely wasn’t one of mutual decision-making. And, for that, he felt sorry for Joe.

He looked at Zack to see a similar look of mixed emotions on Zack’s face. Galen finally realized that the answer to what he’d been wondering— if Rebecca was the one for Zack— was no. It really was a past relationship, and she’d slid into the kid-sister slot in Zack’s life. Which would make this job a lot easier.

Zack looked at him. “So what do you think?”

“I think Gemma’s right,” he said. “The fact that she found a couple places to rent is also unique. She’s very proactive.” Zack nodded, as Galen continued, “And maybe you didn’t hear, but she asked for my help. She said potentially some electronics were here.”

At that, Zack’s eyebrows rose. He looked at the closed door of the bedroom and nodded. “She’s always been one step ahead of the others.”

“And, in this case at least, she’s doing it for all the right reasons.”

Rebecca crossed her arms over her chest and glared at the men. “I’m right here, though I’m not sure I understand what you’re talking about.”

“Doesn’t matter,” Zack said, wrapping an arm around her shoulder, giving her a quick hug. He looked at Galen. “We should check the car for the stuff then.”

They headed outside, leaving Gemma to get some sleep while they went to the car. They took a look at the stuff in the trunk.

Rebecca came with the guys to the car. “Becky should be waking up soon, and I’ll need a hell of an explanation ready for this,” she announced.

“Why?” Galen asked.

“She had a party to go to this weekend, and she’ll be pretty upset to miss it.”

Galen nodded. He figured a little girl would get over it, but there might be some tears first. “So whose car is this?” he asked Rebecca.

“Whoever gave her the car is a secret, so don’t ask. She won’t even tell me who it was.” Rebecca’s tone held resentment. “He also gave her cash.”

“Cash is good,” Galen said mildly, noting the visible disgust on Rebecca’s face.

As they dug into the trunk of the car, she grabbed two bags. “These are Becky’s.”

He looked at them, nodded, looked at the rest of the gear in the back of the car, and asked, “So how much of this is yours?”

She pointed out six suitcases.

Six. He looked at her. “And this was a quick pack for you?”

She shrugged. “I didn’t know what I would need, did I?” And, with that, she sauntered inside.

He looked at Zack. “Only one suitcase in here she didn’t point to.”

Zack nodded slowly. “Yeah, that’ll be Gemma’s.” He shook his head and pointed to a box. “What’s in there?”

Sure enough, it was electronics. Computerized electronics with long-life batteries.

“This is pretty sophisticated stuff.” Galen whistled. “And this hooks up to the satellite feed.”

“Let’s get this inside, and see what we can do,” Zack said. It didn’t take long to sort out that she had three security cameras. “One front, one back?”

“Maybe one inside for close-ups?”

As Gemma came out the bedroom door, she nodded, rubbing her eyes.

He frowned at her. “You weren’t down for very long.”

“I do power naps,” she said. “I just have to go down, and then I’m good after ten minutes.” She noted the absence of her sister. “Is Rebecca in with Becky?” she asked, pointing at another closed door.

“Yeah,” Zack confirmed.

Gemma motioned at the box. “So that is all I have. Except for my laptop which connects to these.”

“Did you try them?”

“I did, which is why I’m short on sleep.”

The guys nodded, bringing the rest of the stuff inside the cabin. She brought out her laptop from a huge bag he’d noticed sitting off to the side in the kitchen area. One of those over-the-shoulder purses which women carried around that seemed to hold everything. And, sure enough, she pulled out a modem, several battery packs, a mouse, and then a notebook.

She sat down at the small kitchen table and quickly turned on the laptop. “My thoughts had been one for the front road, one for the back door, and one for inside somewhere along this transition wall.” She pointed up to where the wall was. “We could then potentially see the kitchen and living room and somebody coming up and down the stairs.”

With that agreement in place, the men quickly secured the cameras as best they could to be out of the way, hidden, even bringing some greenery in to make it look like it was a decoration.

With that set up, she brought up the software and motioned to the computer. “Numbers one and two are online.”

Galen stepped behind her to take a look. “Good enough. Number three isn’t picking up anything though.” He walked over and readjusted it. “I don’t like the looks of the sensor in the back.”

She went to a box and brought out a smaller box from inside. “Here. These are replacement sensors.”

He looked at them in surprise. “Where did you get this stuff?”

“I have connections.”

He grinned at that. “So do I,” he said, with an approving nod. “They’re good to have.” He could feel more easing of her stiffness.

She nodded. “They’ve been a saving grace so far.”

“That’s how you got the car?”

“How do you know it’s not mine?”

“I checked.”

“Hell, yes, that’s how I got the car.”

He was glad that Gemma had somebody capable of helping her right now. He wished that he’d been the one she called. Something was just so compelling about that quiet take-charge way about her, to the point that he was getting irritated with the sister and would like to just ditch her. But that was hardly the point, when keeping her safe was why they were here in the first place.
Dale Mayer. Galen’s Gemma (Kindle Locations 400-459). Valley Publishing Ltd..

I have to admit I like Gemma’s contacts, and also the compound she brought them to after the cabin. She had spent many a summer on that property. A happy time for her and their is plenty to keep little Becky happy as well.

The guys find they like Tim the owner, even though he seems to have quite and arsenal on the premises. Also good to know Tim is a Veteran and will help keep everyone safe while they are there.

Gemma has plenty of love for her family and is proactive in every thing she does. Her niece Becky is adorable but even at her young age she gravitates more toward Gemma than her mother. I mean seriously, who names their daughter after themselves?

So much intrigue and mystery surrounds Joe’s death and Rebecca isn’t helping at all. It seems like a twist happened on every other page. Not to mention the growing attraction between Galen and Gemma that simmers them sizzles.

I can’t wait to read the next book in this series, ‘Zack’s Zest’. The tease at the end of this book was perfect.

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

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Coming Soon!

Zack’s Zest
Bonaparte’s Belle

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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Amazon Author Page

The Date: An Online Dating Romance – A Keeper Series Book 5 by Melissa McClone

The Date: An Online Dating Romance
A Keeper Series Book 5
USA Today Bestselling Author
Melissa McClone


One tech entrepreneur,
one blonde bombshell,
and two rival dating sites…

When Dani Bennett lands a new marketing job, she can’t wait to prove herself. But her excitement fizzles when her new boss insists she create an online dating profile to spy on the competition. Quitting isn’t an option; she needs the money. Now, she must meet the charming guy who’s been messaging her. Dani, however, has played this game before. She knows exactly what he’s after—what they’re all after. It’s a good thing she has a foolproof plan to keep her date from being interested in her.

Bryce Delaney works hard to keep scammers from infiltrating his dating website. He’ll do anything to keep his clients and his company safe, like asking a potential corporate spy to meet him for coffee. When the woman turns out to be more hobo than hottie, he’s intrigued. She has no idea he founded the dating website, and he plans to keep it that way until he can uncover her agenda.

As one date leads to another, sparks fly. Dani knows a relationship built on lies will never work, but she’s not the only one with a secret. Will the truth bring her and Bryce closer or send them back online to find someone else to love?

This is a revised, expanded version of a book previously published as ‘Dream Date with the Millionaire’.

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Dani used to love her profession, but her current job wasn’t at all what she wanted. She took this job in desperation, she had her mother’s medical insurance and sister’s tuition to help with.

Her boss James, had her sign up on a competitor’s dating site but so far she hadn’t gone on a date. She did however make a couple of friends. Tired of all the subterfuge she confesses to her friends she’s a spy on the sight. This sets off red flags and Bryce, the CEO of BlindDateBrides, immediately takes action. He sends a message to her under his seldom used profile ‘Big Brother’ with an interesting question.

Dani never had any intention of going out with any of the guys who messaged her, but with this one she actually replied instead of brushing him off. She happened to get another response when she checked the site at work and her boss heard her laughter.

Now he’s upping the ante, go out with some of them or get fired.

With coffee arranged with Big Brother, and a dinner date with someone named GymGuy she resigns herself to some first dates.

Now coffee with Big Brother, aka Bryce, turned out to be fun and she found herself wanting to see more of him. First she had to deal with GymGuy.

This is a favorite scene.

Once upon a time, she had a fabulous job, a sporty new car, and a one-bedroom apartment with a peek of the San Francisco Bay out her living room window, and a reserved parking spot.

Now she was dating strangers to get information her boss wanted.

She reached past her wineglass to her water and drank.

Dani hated to be going out with anyone like this. Relationships needed to be founded on honesty if they were to last. That was the healthy way to meet someone and fall for them. Unlike building a foundation on lies and half-truths. If she fell for any man from the website, she would have to come clean at some point, and people would get hurt.

“So”— Gregg raised his wineglass—“ you’re a lot better looking than your photograph.”

“I hoped guys might read my profile instead of judging me by a picture.”

“That’s what I did.” His gaze dropped from her face to her chest. “Smart move, for sure.”

Bummer. Dani’s clothes— a skirt, blouse, and sweater— fit loosely to hide her curves, but he’d glimpsed enough to capture his attention. She should have worn the baggy sweats instead.

Gregg stared as if he had see-through clothing vision. “Though you’d probably get more takers if you mentioned you had such nice melons in your profile.”

Dani choked. Coughed. Wiped her mouth with her napkin.

O-kay. So much for him being polite.

But she’d learned how to deal with men like him. Learned all too well.

With her napkin back on her lap, she straightened. “Stick to the macadamia nuts. You can’t handle the melons.”

His mouth gaped. He closed it.

“I sure would like to if you’ll give me a chance.” Gregg leaned over the table toward her, and she noticed how his eyes were beady like a sewer rat. “My place is walking distance from here. Why don’t we skip dinner, head over there, and go straight to dessert?”

She bit back a sigh.

So typical.

And to think she’d been plagued by guilt for using him to get information when he wanted to use her for sex. At least Bryce had been a gentleman at the café.

Gregg raised an eyebrow and puckered his lips slightly. “You know you want to go to my apartment with me.”

Jerk. She bypassed the water and sipped from her wineglass. No sense wasting an expensive bottle.

Or the opportunity. Although lowering herself to his level left a bitter taste in her mouth.

Consider it market research, she told herself. Or morbid curiosity. “Do you do this a lot?”

“Depends on your definition of a lot, but I can squeeze you in with my busy schedule.” He sipped his wine. “We will be so good together.”

She should have gone out with Bryce instead of this wannabe, who gave players a bad name. “In bed, you mean?”

“Where else?” Gregg took another drink. “Women say they’re looking for a long-term commitment on their profiles, but secretly they want an adventure. All they need is the right man to lead the way.”

“You’ve figured this out on your own?”

“All by myself.” His smug smile returned. “Are you ready for an adventure, Dani?”

Gregg reached across the table, past the flickering votive candle, past the bud vase containing a Gerbera daisy, past her hand, to stroke the juncture of her chest with his fingertip.

Disgust sent her flying back. She nearly fell. As she jerked to her feet, her chair crashed to the floor.

The restaurant was dead quiet. Customers stared. The waitstaff, too.

She didn’t care. “What are you doing?”

“I’m giving you what you want.”

“What I want?” Dani’s blood pressure soared. His words took her back to high school, where the boys elbowed each other and propositioned her when she passed by them. She’d ignored their taunts even though it hurt because she wanted to be part of the popular crowd. She was older, wiser now. No need to fit in with people she never liked. “What I want is for you to crawl back into the hole you slithered out of.”

“You’re a feisty one, aren’t you?” He raised his eyebrows up and down as if performing a bizarre mating call. “Women who play hard to get are usually good in bed.”

“You’ll never know.” She picked up her glass of water and tossed the contents on his lap. “That should cool you off.”

Gregg jumped up, grabbed a napkin, and patted himself. “Why, you little—”

“Is there a problem?”

The male voice came from behind. She turned.


Surprise and a flash of joy skittered through Dani. Her mouth went dry. She’d been thinking about him tonight. Now he was here, looking gorgeous in a brown suit and concerned about her.

She gloried in the moment, a wide grin on her face.

And then she remembered.

She wasn’t alone. Her cheeks burned.

Dani glanced at a red-faced Gregg, frantically drying the front of his pants and muttering to himself.

“Are you okay?” Bryce asked.

The tenderness of his voice eased some of her humiliation. She stared up at him. So handsome. So strong.

He had a looking-for-a-fight gleam in his eyes. His desire to protect pleased her.
Melissa McClone. The Date: An Online Dating Romance (Kindle Locations 855-929). Cardinal Press, LLC.

In spite of the fact that he is investigating Dani’s comment on his site, Bryce couldn’t help being attracted to this funny, intelligent woman. He just has to figure out why she’s on the site.

Plenty of romance, intrigue and some sizzle as this tale unfolds. Truly a delightful read.

5 Contented Purrs for Melissa!

Click the Cover for Buy Links and More!

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!

Anders’s Angel – Heroes for Hire Book 17 by Dale Mayer

Anders’s Angel
Heroes for Hire Book 17
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


He’s all about second chances…

Anders loves winter and the wilderness, so a trip to the Swiss Alps to retrieve a glaciologist is right up his alley. When he realizes who he’s picking up, he can’t help but smile at fate.

He’d walked away last time he’d seen her because staying was so damn wrong… Now he can’t wait for a chance to reconnect – especially now that she’s no longer engaged…

An expert in an otherwise male-dominated field, Angelica has spent her life studying snow and ice in order to cope with the never-ending heartaches associated with her parents’ divorce and her own ex-fiancé’s betrayal. When Anders comes barreling back into her life, to take her home on her father’s orders, she’s not amused… and she has absolutely no intention of obeying.

Particularly not when she understands why her father demands her return.

Anders can feel the undercurrents, but she won’t explain what’s going on…

Can they bury their differences before danger overtakes them both and his dream of a future together dies before it’s ever had a chance to start?

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Ander’s has just finished up the mission with North and is enjoying Nikki’s grandfather’s company when Levi gives him his next assignment. He’s not that far away, it’s in Switzerland. The job is to extract a Parliament member’s daughter from the glacier she’s working on and keep her protected until she’s home and safe.

Angelica Winthrop is a glaciologist, she’s been studying ice and snow for years all over the world. This work in itself is dangerous, there are many variables in play, the cold and weather to name a couple. On this trip Angelica and her team, Nate, Steve and Hannah are at the mercy of the weather as a blizzard comes in.

Unable to contact Angelica, Anders, Harrison, Desi and Reyes plan their trip up the mountain. However when they discover others are already climbing they request helicopter support to get them to their destination quickly.

For the guys, it comes as no surprise when there is sniper fire just as Anders reaches Angelica and her team. They knew others were out there looking for her.

This is a favorite scene as Anders joins up with Angelica’s team.

“So how’s married life going?” he asked caustically. “You would have been better off married to me.”

“To get ordered around all the time? Like hell.”

“You didn’t bother answering about how married life is going.”

“It’s not going because I never got married.”

He froze for a moment, then turned to look at her. “Really?”

“You were right. He was an asshole. He betrayed me at the next conference. I found him sleeping with one of the staff in my own hotel room that I had paid for.”

“Wow. Okay. So that’s a serious kind of asshole.”

“Exactly.” She glanced around. “Did you come alone?”

“No. I’m waiting for a signal that they’ve taken out the sniper, or at least that it’s safe to get up and move.”

She snorted. “We need to get Nate down to the cabin fast.” She motioned at the others. “We all need to get inside where it’s warm.”

“That might be, but we’re not taking Nate anywhere and getting you shot in the meantime.”

“Speaking of which, why the hell are you here?”

“Your father.”

She shook her head. “I don’t want anything to do with him.”

“You don’t have a choice,” Anders said tiredly. “Somebody is trying to use you to get at him, possibly to kidnap you for leverage over your father. If a bullet hole in your friend here isn’t enough proof that you’re in danger, what is? I highly suggest you stop fighting me on this.”

“Why the hell would I do that?” she asked with spirit. “If anything, I’m even less likely to take orders from you.”

“I thought you’d have seen what we had,” he said, his voice low. “But apparently you can’t see past your own nose.”

A hawk’s cry ripped through the air.

Finally the signal. Anders stood, packed Nate’s wound tight with a bandage from his pack. He then hefted Nate high on his shoulder, staggering under his weight, then set out. The other three crowded around him.

“What the hell happened?” Hannah cried out.

He glanced at her, recognizing her face from the conference where he’d met Angelica. “It’s Hannah, isn’t it?”

She shot him a hard look. “Yes, it is, but I sure as hell don’t know you.”

“Meet one of our fine American military officers,” Angelica said, “always out to protect and to serve. Naval Officer Anders Renau.”

“No longer in the military, thank you very much.” He swore as his foot came down, reaching the crust and breaking through. This was treacherous footing. It would help a lot if somebody broke the trail for him, but he wouldn’t ask any of these guys. Once his own men joined them, it would be easier going. Anders kept up the silent march, packing Nate, who had to be at least 180 pounds himself. But, with all his gear, he topped the two hundred mark. “Keep an eye out for a blood trail behind us,” he said. “If you see it, make sure you bury it. We don’t want anyone or anything anything able to follow us.”

One of the other men stepped forward and said, “I’m Steve. Let me break trail for you.” He traipsed in front and moved ahead.

“Thanks,” Anders said. “I’m not sure how many miles we have to travel, but we need to get there as fast as we can.”

“I don’t even know where the hell you came from, let alone that bullet,” Steve said. “It all happened so fast. Next thing I know, Nate was down, and you were tackling Angelica.”

“He does that a lot,” Angelica said. “Apparently Carlo is in trouble again, and they’ve come to retrieve me.”

She had said it with such disdain that Anders groaned. “You know we’re trying to keep you safe …” And something more was going on with Angel and her father for her to resort to calling him by his first name.

“Sure. I wish you’d kept Nate safe instead,” she said bitterly. “If he’s been shot because of something Carlo has done, … I’ll never forgive him.”

“Your father is a member of parliament. He makes enemies,” Anders said, “but this is less about him and more about the danger you are in. As such, why not let us keep you safe?” He walked a moment. “I didn’t know who you were, you know?”

At that, he could hear her tone of disbelief with a single huff.

“Okay, fine. I knew your name, but I didn’t realize you were the daughter of a member of parliament.”

“That’s because I deliberately don’t advertise that,” she said. “You know what it’s like growing up with a political figure as a parent?”

“It would have been a different lifestyle for sure,” he said.

The going was treacherous with a slight decline, and his boots were slipping. The last thing he wanted was to drop Nate.

At the end of the line, Hannah said urgently, “Somebody’s behind us.”

He slowed his footsteps, opened his throat and sent out a wild cry. When the answer came back, he said, “Not to worry. It’s one of my men.”

One of your men?” Hannah asked. “How many are here?”

“Four of us good guys. As for the assholes who shot Nate, I have no idea, but it definitely won’t be just one.”

“Did your friends take out the shooter?” Hannah asked.

“Not sure. None of us are safe here.” Anders’s tone was hard. “Somebody went to a lot of effort to come up here after you.”

“Here? Why? What have we done?” Steve asked. “And I get that you and Angelica have a history, but what kind of history? Details please,” he added with a big grin.

“The only history we have,” she said in exasperation, “was a moment of friendship.”

“Only so far as a friendship can go when you’re engaged to be married,” he said. “And that guy was a plain asshole anyway. If you’d listened to me, it would’ve saved you a lot of heartache.”

“Maybe I don’t like know-it-all men,” she snapped. “And you telling me to ditch my fiancé because you’d be a much better man for me wasn’t helpful.”

“Yeah. How about now?”

Steve, still breaking the path in front of him, started laughing. “You two are hilarious. If you were like this before, you must have ruffled her feathers plenty.”

“Angel definitely wasn’t an ice queen back then,” he said with a sigh. “There was plenty of heat. Which is why I knew she had no business marrying that idiot. Especially when he sat at the bar surrounded by women.”

“It was a business networking session,” she said defensively.

“Yeah, he was networking all right,” Anders said.

“Body language doesn’t lie. He was networking into anybody’s bed he could get into.”

Angelica remained silent.

He realized that airing their dirty laundry in front of her research team was not a smart idea. “At least all is well that ends well,” he said in a conciliatory tone. “He’s out of your life. And you’re much better off.”

She groaned. “Okay. Can we change the subject from my personal life please?”

“Do we have to?” Hannah asked in an attempt at lightness. “It’s the most fascinating conversation we’ve had in the last week.”

It was a good way to keep people’s minds off the harsh pace Anders had set.

“And why is your friend following us anyway?” Hannah asked.

“He’s removing our tracks to make it harder to follow us.”

At Steve’s quick twist to look at Anders and then to immediately pivot back, walking a little faster, Anders realized the others understood.

“How much longer?” Hannah’s panic rode the edge of her voice.

“I’d say about fifteen minutes,” Anders said. He refused to keep checking the time. The hike would end when the hike would end.

He was accustomed to marching, but the differing terrain, the snow and the hills made this trek a little bit more dangerous. The fact they were out in the open made it that much more dangerous. He could have gone to the tree line and stayed hidden for a little longer, but the end result was, they would still have to march out in the open at this point. The cabin was below them. Nate was still tied up with the connecting rope to the others, and, since Anders carried Nate, Anders was part of the rope chain. But, if one of them went down, … that wouldn’t be a good idea, considering Nate and Anders. And he couldn’t slide the next couple hundred feet either. Although they would move much faster, it could also cause them a lot more injuries.

Just then Steve tripped and went down. He rolled until his rope grew taut. Anders hit the brakes, knowing the rope around Nate would soon pull on them both. Anders grabbed it with his free hand and pulled backward to stop Steve’s stumble. The two women were caught up in the rope behind Nate. With Steve in the lead and now on the ground, the ropes were even more important.

Slowly Steve made it to his knees. He stopped and took a deep breath, looked around him and said, “Well, that wasn’t much fun.”

“Let me break the trail,” Angelica said.

“No,” Anders said. “You stay right at my side.”

“That won’t help us much,” she said in exasperation. “We have to get Nate to safety. And fast.”

“That’s fine,” Anders said, “but what I don’t want is anybody else falling. If we have to slow it down a little bit, then we will.”

“You’re the one carrying Nate. Aren’t you tired?”

Steve slowly made his way to his feet. “I can’t say this is a pace I’m terribly comfortable with. My legs are already killing me and so are my lungs.”

“The cabin is up ahead,” Angelica said reassuringly. “This has ended up being quite the nightmare.”

Steve shot her a look. “You’re not kidding. If Nate doesn’t make it …”

“Nate has brand new twin sons at home,” she said firmly. “We’ll do everything possible to get him back to them once again.”
Mayer, Dale. Anders’s Angel: A SEALs of Honor World Novel (Heroes for Hire Book 16) (pp. 47-54). Valley Publishing Ltd.. Kindle Edition.

With Nate safely at the hospital and doing well, they get the rest of the team ready to leave the country.

Angelica doesn’t like where she is headed though and makes her position very clear. She wants nothing to do with her father. Circumstances prevent the guys from taking here anywhere else and things just keep ramping up from here.

Anders and Angelica are perfect for each other and as all the pieces start coming together it becomes clear that this is a relationship that will last.

Plenty of action and intrigue, with just the right amount of sizzle.

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

Click the Cover for Buy Links and More!

Coming Soon!

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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Amazon Author Page

Keith – Hathaway House Book 11 by Dale Mayer

Hathaway House Book 11
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


Welcome to Hathaway House.
Rehab Center. Safe Haven.
Second chance at life and love.

Keith came to Hathaway House at his sister’s insistence. For he has already given up on regaining the future she keeps telling him that he can find here or, for that matter, any other future worth having. And, besides, don’t they know he’s too weak for the trip and for the treatment and for any of the plans the team has for him? Don’t they know he’s broken beyond repair, and nothing they can do will fix him?

But apparently they don’t because no one listens to him. Not the doctors. Not his sister. And definitely not the tiny woman who keeps delivering his coffee at 5:00 a.m.

Ilse, head chef for Hathaway House, rarely ventures out of the kitchen she manages. It’s easier to deal with the groceries and the staff than it is to see the pain and suffering of those she feeds. But something about Keith and his frailty calls to her. She can’t help but go out of her way to ensure he has everything he needs. Even though she knows she cannot keep their relationship on a professional level, once started.

Even if not in her best interests to do so. Because, in this case, surely Keith’s best interests matter, so much more than her own.

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Keith’s sister Robin works at the Veterinarian Clinic at Hathaway House. She’s seen the almost miraculous progress people make, and that includes her fiancé Iain. She is determined that Keith come to Hathaway House and he gives in. He doesn’t believe there is anything more for him, there’s been too many surgeries, too many backslides. He isn’t full of hope like his sister when he arrives at Hathaway House.

One of the first people he meets on that first day is Ilse. Ilse is a Chef and in charge of the kitchen at Hathaway House, quite the challenge to feed all the patients and staff. Ilse is a force to be reckoned with in the kitchen.

Keith is surprised that Ilse would even consider delivering food to him on this first day. Although it’s Dennis who delivers it, Ilse creates a dinner for him that he finds he can eat.

This is a favorite scene.

Keith was dozing in bed and shivering slightly when a knock on his door got his attention. He opened his eyes to see a huge male, wearing a big grin, walking in the door, carrying a tray. He put it down on the small swing table and moved it closer to the bed.

“Hi, I’m Dennis,” he said. “Ilse sent this over for you.”

He looked at the food, looked at Dennis, and said, “I’m pretty sure I told her that I didn’t want anything to eat,” he said with caution.

But Dennis studied him with a critical gaze. “And you’re shivering,” he said bluntly. “You need some hot soup, and we need to get you some warm blankets. You start eating. I’ll take care of the other.” With that, he was gone.

Now that he was more awake, Keith realized that he really was quite cold. The hot soup was a good idea; he hadn’t really expected to get room service. It was a nice concept, but the thought that Ilse had sent it was what he struggled with. Still, he picked up the spoon and took a sip. Only partly admitting he was doing it for her.

Then he stopped, savoring the taste in his mouth before swallowing. Not only was it good and the flavors beautifully blended but it added a wonderfully warm and soothing element to his body. He picked up another spoonful chock-full of tender meat, and, before long, his soup was half gone.

He stared at his bowl, surprised. He almost never ate this much. And he noted a plate with meat and cheese was on the side too. At first, he wouldn’t have any, but he picked up one and then a second piece. The next thing he knew, one of the big pieces of toast was gone, as was most of the meat and cheese.

By the time Dennis walked back into his room, Keith was pushing away the tray.

Dennis caught sight of it, looked at him, and said, “Wow, you were hungry.” Quickly Dennis opened up the heated blanket and laid it across Keith’s body.

Immediately he moaned. “Oh, God. Now I know how cold I was. I had no idea.”

Dennis tucked him in, and the shivers started.

“You let those shivers work,” Dennis ordered. “Let’s get that body temperature back up again.” He nodded at the tray. “You ate half of everything. Do you want any more?”

“I want to,” he said, “but I’m scared of pushing my stomach.”

“You know what? That’s probably wise,” he said. “Let’s just call it quits with this amount right now, if that’s okay with you.”

Hesitating, Keith looked at it. “Let me have a few more bites of that soup.” Struggling to keep the blanket tucked around his chest, he had another three or four spoonfuls until it was mostly gone. As the tray was about to go, he picked up the rest of the meat and cheese and said, “Okay, now I’m done.”

“Good thing,” Dennis said, “because the only thing you left was a half a piece of bread.”

He smiled, sank back into the covers. “Man, I don’t know where you got this heated blanket from, but, God, it’s exactly what I needed.”

“Yeah, we all need them sometimes,” he said. “Now hopefully you’ll get some sleep tonight. That must have been a rough trip getting here.”

“Yeah, it was pretty painful. Right now, I’m mostly just cold,” he said.

“Of course you are. Your body has been through a lot. Now rest. That’s what you need.”

He nodded and sank farther under the covers, slowly munching the last of the meat and cheese. By the time that was gone, his eyelids drifted closed. He wasn’t sure how Ilse had known what he wanted to eat, but it was a perfect choice, and he appreciated it.

As soon as he got the chance, he would tell her. Later. Anything that required movement right now was way too much to contemplate. He closed his eyes, and, within minutes, he fell asleep.
Dale Mayer. Keith (Kindle Locations 235-265). Valley Publishing Ltd.

Ilse noticed on her arrival in the early morning hours that Keith’s light was on. She begins visiting him in those early morning hours, sometimes bringing him coffee. She doesn’t quite understand her attraction to him but she can’t seem to stay away.

Keith has Shane for his PT, and if you’re reading this series you already know he’s a stern taskmaster. Keith is making progress he doesn’t realize, but it’s also a mental process and he has some hurdles there.

Ilse faces some issues in her kitchen along with the realization she’s falling for Keith and wants the opportunity to see if it can become something lasting.

I love how the animals come into play here, they too are an important part of the healing process. Iain also comes for a visit to meet his future brother-in-law, but also to give encouragement.

I loved reading this journey to healing and romance and I can’t wait to read the next book in this series.

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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