Second Chances, Kristie Leigh Maguire {$0.99}

 

Jane Porter’s dreams of marrying Mike Farley, the handsome cowboy who lives on the neighboring ranch, are shattered when Mike suddenly marries a redheaded stranger he met at the Wild Horse Saloon in Casper, Wyoming. After Mike stomped all over Jane’s heart with his cowboy boots, can Jane ever trust her heart to a man again?

Mike Farley marries beautiful Samantha Jo Smith after a whirlwind courtship with no thought to Jane Porter, his childhood sweetheart and the woman everyone in Fremont County thought he would marry one day. Mike soon learns to regret his hasty marriage to Samantha. Can Mike win back Jane’s heart even though he had shattered it into a million pieces?

Longtime friends and neighbors Jim Porter and Liz Farley turn to each other for support after the unexpected death of their spouses. Will Jim and Liz’s friendship turn into something deeper even though they both feel they have had, and lost, their chance at love?

Is it ever too late for love? Is it ever too late for second chances?

Set in rural Wyoming, Second Chances is a sweet contemporary western romance that will warm your heart. One reader stated, “I read it through in an evening, and felt as if I had spent that evening with ‘salt of the earth’ folk.” Another reader said, “I loved the double, no triple, second chance. It was a very sweet ending.”

What readers are saying:

*The story starts off with a bang. Jane Porter finds out from her father that her long-time boyfriend, Mike Farley, is going to marry another woman. Jane confronts him and finds out it’s true. From there, we are given the viewpoints of Mike’s mother, Jane’s father, and the woman Mike married (Samantha). What I got out of this book (and really enjoyed) was the idea that everyone has their side to the story. Even Samantha, who leaves Mike, has a likable side to her. I think that was the reason the author gave all the viewpoints she did: to show us that there are two sides to every story.*

*Mike and Jane have grown up, together, on neighboring ranches, kissed and declared their love for one another at 13 and 12. It’s always been assumed that they would marry, but suddenly Mike goes off the deep end, marrying a total stranger he met 2 weeks before. Is Jane upset? You BET!!!! This is a story of love rocked to the core by betrayal. Do the characters react like you think they should? Not a chance…BUT they react like real people (some, at least) do.*

*A heart-warming story of love, betrayal and forgiveness. The story is told from several viewpoints, detailing each character’s motivations and emotions and was very well written. A quick, satisfying read that left me with a warm, cozy feeling.*

*A beautifully written love story that will warm your heart.
I was so taken with the story that I read it in one sitting last night.*

*Most of the characters in this book were really flawed, and I have to tell you that half way through the read I couldn’t imagine how this would work out. But this is one skilled author and this was a really satisfying book. She really explores the characters motivations and leads everyone on quite a journey! I particularly enjoyed the character of Sammy Jo, it would have been so easy to turn her into a paper cut villain but I felt sympathetic towards her, which made the relationship between Mike and Jane all the more interesting. I can’t wait to read more books by this talented author.*

The average Amazon Review is currently 3.2 stars {27 reviews}.

Click here to read more about and purchase Second Chances for $0.99 from Amazon!

THE FRUGAL FIND OF THE DAY: Love Me Some Cowboy, Lisa Mondello, Jean Brashear, Barbara McMahon, Day Leclaire, Ginger Chambers {$0.99}

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The Frugal Find Under Nine of the Day:

Description of Love Me Some Cowboy:

Who can resist a tough, rugged cowboy?  Not these feisty, determined women!

Five full-length cowboy novels at a steal of a price from USA Today Bestselling authors Lisa Mondello, Jean Brashear, Barbara McMahon and Day Leclaire and Waldenbooks Bestselling author Ginger Chambers.

 

Accolades:

“Emotional depth and situations that tore at my heart. This is exactly what I want from a romance.” (about Ginger Chambers, Love, Texas)

“I can never get enough of Day Leclaire’s novels. It’s all about the
characters, and these are especially lovable, funny, and heartwarming …
not to mention sexy. I really identified with Cami’s act-first, think-later
personality. Adorable!” (about Day Leclaire, Once Upon a Cowboy)

“A great story about second chances at love. A hunky cowboy and a feisty cowgirl and a cute little boy to round off this romance.” (about Barbara McMahon, Crazy About a Cowboy)

“I really enjoyed this, er, literary foreplay. I knew that when these two finally made love, they wouldn’t just be going through the motions—there were going to be some fireworks….Jean Brashear is a terrific discovery for me.” (about Jean Brashear, Texas Secrets)

“I recommend this book to anyone who likes cowboys and sexy romance.” (about Lisa Mondello, Nothing But Trouble)

 

Love Me Some Cowboy is available for purchase at:

Amazon Kindle for $0.99


Excerpt from Love Me Some Cowboy:

NOTHING BUT TROUBLE

by Lisa Mondello

Chapter One

“Like I just told you, ma’am,” Stoney Buxton said, glancing up through squinted eyes at the fair-skinned woman standing over him. “I’m a rancher. I don’t do wilderness tours. You’ll just have to find someone else to guide you through that terrain.”

Though the sun floating in the cloudless sky in front of him made it difficult to see, he tipped the brim of his well-worn cowboy hat with the edge of the hammer he gripped between his fingers to get a better look at the young woman.

Now what in hell’s blazes is this?

She stood there, all legs, eyes, and lips pouting down at him. A picture of beauty, polished and gleaming like Sunday silver. Her long legs–he noticed every inch of them as his eyes trailed the length of her–would do better wrapped around a man’s waist. Even hidden beneath her smooth fitting jeans he could tell those legs were much too refined and delicate to take the hard living of trailing through Wyoming wilderness. Her red manicured nails shone bright in the mid-day sun and matched the vibrant shade of her full lips. Her eyes, a soft shade of cinnamon brown, held a determined fire that told him she wasn’t going to back down, no matter what he threw at her.

Something was seriously wrong with this picture.

“Gerald Hammond from the General Store said that you were the best guide in the area. I want the best.”

He saw her jaw set as a gentle breeze blew a wisp of hair over her forehead. She quickly brushed it away with an air of grace that spoke of money. Lots of it. Family money that paid for the designer clothes caressing every curve and valley of her body.

Pulling himself up to a stand, he stretched out the ache in his leg and his shoulder. That nagging ache was a constant reminder of the long days he now spent working the family ranch. And why he’d quit rodeo over a year ago.

“Old man Hammond said that, did he?”

“Yes.”

“Well, he was mistaken. There are plenty of guides on the reservation that can take you safely through the Wind River Mountain Range.”

Her chest heaved with an impatient sigh. “Yes, I know. But I need something a little more than what they’re offering. Much more, in fact.”

She didn’t blink, even when he shifted closer. He had to admire that she didn’t appear intimidated by him, seeing how he stood a good ten inches taller than her. Lord, but she smelled good, all sunshine and fresh rain mixed with a hint of vanilla. Bailing hay and stringing barbed wire didn’t afford him much opportunity to be in the company the likes of this pretty little eyeful standing before him. It was just one more thing to remind him of what he was missing now that he was off the road and home for good.

“I don’t think you understand, Miss…?” He flipped his hand, palm up and waited for her reply.

“Ms. Summers. Melanie Summers. And I understand perfectly. I understand that I am in need of a guide for the next four weeks.” She sucked in a deep breath as he moved a step closer.

“What you’re asking for is impossible at best.” He shook his head at the absurdity of her request. “Have you ever been in the wilderness? Have you ever even saddled a horse?”

She lifted her chin defiantly, the spark in her soft brown eyes fired up like the heat of the sun beating down on them. Her voice was sure. “I know perfectly well how to ride, Mr. Buxton.”

“I’m not talking equestrian jumps that a poodle could land at the country club. I’m talking wild terrain where you are no better than the animals that consider you their prey. Have you ever had eight hundred pounds of snarling grizzly breathing down your neck? Ever felt a hungry mountain lion’s eyes on your back as she stalks you?”

She gasped softly, a small flash of uncertainty creeping into her sun filled eyes.

Stoney sputtered. “Just as I thought. Lady, roughing it isn’t staying at the local motor lodge-”

Her eyes flew open in sudden surprise. “Wait a minute. The local motor lodge? My father got to you.” She said the words as a statement, he noticed, as if she was already convinced that it was fact.

Stoney arched an eyebrow.

“This just stinks!” Balling her fists, she spun on her heels, muttering something unladylike under her breath as she took a few steps along the corral he’d been repairing in the feed yard. Her soft red cotton shirt clung to her back, defining the lines of her slender figure as she took each labored breath. He couldn’t help but wonder how it would feel to run his hand along her small back.

As she turned to face him again, he saw that her determined fire was back. “No matter. This isn’t between you and my father; it’s between you and me. If you’re holding out for more money, then fine. Whatever it is that he promised you for turning me away, I’ll top in return for getting me safely through the next month.”

“Look, lady, I haven’t a clue what you’re talking about. But my refusal has nothing to do with money.”

She cocked her head in disbelief. Her anger had vanished with the dust and was replaced with blue-blooded charm. “Oh, it’s always about money, isn’t it?”

His jaw tightened. Yes, there was something definitely wrong here. And money had nothing to do with it. It had everything to do with this beauty standing in front of him, who was clueless about what she was getting her pretty little hide into. “No,” he replied tersely.

“Mr. Buxton, I need your help.”

“Tourist season is in full swing. I’m sure you’ll have no trouble finding someone else.”

He turned his back to her and began walking along the fence toward the barn, almost forgetting… Abruptly, he glanced up and saw the charred remains of the barn. The place where all his troubles had started just one year ago. It hadn’t taken but a second for him to hear her boots digging into the dusty gravel behind him, jarring him from his thoughts.

“Then I’ll do it myself,” she said to his back.

His whole body stiffened. He angled back to read her face, to see if she was just being a spoiled rotten rich kid, trying to get her way, or if she was actually serious. Seeing her head held high and her arms crossed in front of her, he realized she was dead serious.

And dead she’d be if she stepped one boot into those mountains alone.

“You’ll do no such thing.” Frustration flaring, he lifted his dusty hat and forced his fingers through the thick crop of black hair before returning the hat to his head. “You just don’t get it, do you? You’re not asking me to take you on a theme park ride where you’ll get to see the wonders of the world at a nice safe distance. This is God’s country. The creatures that live up there don’t know civilization, and you are no better than them. You could–probably will–get killed if you go out there alone.” His lips twitched, taking a good long appraising look at the woman in front of him. “You might even chip a nail on that pretty hand of yours.”

 

Love Me Some Cowboy is available for purchase at:

Amazon Kindle for $0.99


Connect with the authors:

Twitter: @onfirefiction

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OnFireFiction?ref=ts&fref=ts

Secrets, Lorhainne Eckhart {$0.99 or Borrow FREE w/Prime!}

For Diana, Jed was the first man she trusted. He was the first man to show her what true love was. He was the father of her child, the one man she could always count on. Until one spring day Jed falls from the roof of the barn and Diana’s world as she knows it begins to unravel.

Diana is forced to face two things, her husband’s secrets, and what if… there was no Jed.

What readers are saying:

Captivating, suspenseful, full of emotion and love. Brings a family together in support and compassion. Can’t wait to read more about the Friessen family.

There should be no secrets between husband and wife, Ms. Eckhart does a wonderful job of portraying the emotions felt by a woman who is thrust into this situation.

The current Average Amazon Review Rating is 5 stars {5 reviews}.

Click here to read more about and purchase Secrets for $0.99 or Borrow FREE w/Prime!

Abby: Mail Order Bride (Unconventional Series #1), Verna Clay {$2.99 or Borrow FREE w/ Prime!}

Brant Samson has fallen on hard times with the death of his beloved wife a year earlier from lung fever. Left with three children, he’s desperate to find a mother for them. Ten year old Jenny does her best to care for two year old Ty, and fourteen year old Luke works the ranch with his father, losing himself in dime novels to ease the pain of his mother’s death. Brant’s options are limited since eligible women seldom pass through Two Rivers, much less settle in the small Texas town. In desperation, he places a classified advertisement for a mail order bride. Marrying a woman he’ll come to know through a newspaper ad scares the bejesus out of him, but at this point, he’s out of options.

Abigail Mary Vaughn always dreamed of having her own family, but caring for her elderly parents, as well as working as a teacher to help with finances, ended that dream. Her parents are now dead and she’s faced with the reality of her dismal existence. After reading Mr. Samson’s advertisement in the Philadelphia Inquirer, she garners enough courage to respond. Since she is considered an old maid at the age of thirty-eight, she’ll more than likely spend the rest of her life in gut-wrenching loneliness unless she does something unconventional.

What readers are saying:

Average 4.5 stars (20 reviews)

…This book is not your average romance. In fact, if it was a little longer, this could easily be literary fiction… (Amazon review)

This is one of the sweetest books that I have ever read. Sensual without being graphic… (Amazon review)

I cannot RAVE enough about this story… (Amazon review)

…This story had tears in my eyes, and I don’t remember that ever happening before. It’s a well-written story of
humor and sadness and love in many forms… I’m eager to read the next book in the series. (Amazon review)

I just love western historicals and this one did not disappoint. I loved the characters were well written with a wonderful story… (Amazon review)

The average Amazon reader review rating is currently 4.5 stars, with 29 reviews.

Click here to read more about and purchase Abby: Mail Order Bride (Unconventional Series #1) for $2.99 or Borrow FREE w/ Prime at Amazon

THE FRUGAL FIND OF THE DAY: Mountain Woman (A Kate McAlaster Adventure 1), Johnny Fowler {$2.99 or Borrow FREE w/Prime!}

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Johnny Fowler‘s Frugal Find Under Nine:

Description of Mountain Woman:

Kate McAlaster, the sole survivor of a wagon train massacre on the Oregon Trail, was alone facing winter with only a rifle, a pistol, her horse and her wits.  After the attack, Kate found the wagon master barely alive.  He gave her directions to a cabin owned by a mountain man, Homer Manchester, called Man.  Kate worried about spending the winter in a cabin alone with a mountain man, but it couldn’t be worse than starvation.  Or could it?

She finds herself trapped in the wilderness, living with a stranger, fighting for her life against Indian renegades and slave traders.  She must learn to adapt to a life she never would have dreamed of living and become a ruthless mountain woman to survive.


Accolades:

“I personally love this book! It was exciting as well as romantic!I would recommended it to all my friends whether they like western books or not. This is just a good read for anyone!”

“I’ve recently been getting into the “Western” genre, and this book is a definite winner. The story is well-written and complex, the characters are likable, and some of the action scenes are quite intense. A great book for a low price.”

“I read this book in a day because I couldn’t seem to put it down. I kept thinking about it and picking it back up. This book has all I wanted to find in a western novel. Excitement, danger, exploration, and even a little romance. By the time I finished it, I felt like I’d gone on a wild vacation in the Old West. I’ve decided to buy the other books in the series to see what happens next!”

“Do you love a real live shoot ‘em up Western? If yes, this is the one for you. This author brings all the action you need. Johnny Fowler creates one exciting episode after another, very creative. This story is about the Wild West as it really happened.”


Review Ratings:

Mountain Woman currently has a review rating of 4 stars from 26 reviews. Read the reviews here.


Mountain Woman is available for purchase at:

Amazon Kindle for $2.99 or Borrow FREE w/Prime!

 

An excerpt from Mountain Woman:

CHAPTER ONE

 

For the last hour, the weather had worsened.  The dreary blue snow-laden clouds in the north slowly crept overhead wiping out the sun’s warming overlay of the rocky face of the mountains.  Moisture replaced the sun’s battle against the cold’s advantage from the frigid night.

Swaggering winds whipped the tattered and wear-thinned clothing worn by the weary travelers.  The men humped their backs against the seeping cold while the women and children huddled under blankets.  The lucky children snuggled under fluffy goose down feather mattresses in the back of the wagons.

The necks of the mules extended as they strained against the weight of the heavy wagons held back by the sucking mud under the steel-rimmed wheels.  The smell of the oncoming snow made them jittery, as well as anxious, shaking their heads in protest, making their long ears flop in the wind.  The backs of the overworked brutes arched with the strain of the heavy load they were pulling up the steep incline.

Winter’s cold bluster was preparing to take the high country into months of subfreezing temperatures.  A crisp surge of wind brought a frozen fog from the high peaks of the mountains.  A cruel mist settled over the lower crest of the ridge above the winding trail where the wagons trailed.

The unexpected cold surge had slipped down from the high country more than a month early.  The travelers were caught unaware, ill equipped for the sudden drop in temperature.

The settlers prayed this sudden blast of cold would only be a playful jab at them and would retreat in two or three days after having its fun.  The wagons still had a long ways to go.  Oregon, at best, was still weeks away.

Jake, the seasoned but trail-weary wagon boss, yelled at the drivers in a voice that outdistanced the howling wind.  “Light a shuck under them mules.  Keep them wagons moving.”  He rode back and forth along the long line, yelling instructions as he whacked lagging mules and oxen with his rope quirt.

Turning his head toward the rear of the train, he yelled, “We only have another mile or so to go before settling in for the night.  We don’t want to be caught out here in the open, especially if it snows of any importance tonight.  Keep pushing.  There’s a protected place with plenty of graze for the livestock and good shelter for the supper fires.”

A mule stumbled and fell.  Jake and the driver of the wagon jumped down and helped him rise.  The weary animal shook his head in protest, but responded to the encouragement of Jake and his quirt.

The Wagon Master continued his motivation to the drivers.  “A rock overhang will shield off some of the snow and thar’s plenty of trees around to help break the wind.  Keep ‘er rolling.  Hurry now.  We don’t have a lot of time.  Them clouds is a hanging heavy like a pregnant buffalo cow.  They’s chockfull of wet snow ready to dump on us.”

A little girl going on ten years of life huddled beside her mother nestled under blankets as she bounced on the wooden seat.  She shouted excitedly, “Look, Mommy, Indians.”  She pointed at the top of a rise only a hundred yards away.

Everyone within hearing distance jumped and looked.  Men grabbed their rifles.  Women screamed for their older male children walking beside the wagon to climb inside.  The alarm went up and down the line like a bolt of lightning charging the men to action.

Jake yelled, “Hold it men.  Don’t shoot.  Hold your fire.  The Indians may be just looking us over.  Don’t rile them.  ‘Sides, it’s doubtful your bullets would even get close to them at that distance in this wind.  Let’s see what they’re up to first.”

The Indians seemed content to keep pace with the slower moving wagons.  Single file, the watchful riders maneuvered between trees, disappearing for a time, and then out of the mist-laden branches, their spotted ponies would suddenly appear in a clearing.

Somebody shouted above the rattle of the trace chains and steel-rimmed wheels on the rocky trail, “I count six.”

Jake echoed, “Yep, only six.  I can’t make out the tribe.  Their marking is hid under them buffalo robes they got wrapped around themselves.  I can’t tell if their faces are painted war, neither.  But for God’s sake, keep them wagons rolling.  We got only a short ways to go then we can fort up and see what they do.”

All eyes kept following the Indians as they expected them to attack at any moment.  The small band of Indians continued to dog the wagon train, content to keep pace just out of rifle range.

At the next opening in the trees, Jake moaned aloud.  “Oh my god, I only count four now.  Two have dropped out.  I’m a feared they’s gone for reinforcements.  Whack them mules harder.  We gotta get to the camp site, pronto.”

The terrified women gathered their children in the bed of the wagons, but heads could be seen sticking out the back and under the canvas along the side, curious to see the Indians.  One of the older boys held a long kitchen knife in his hand.

“Men,” Jake shouted, “ride out a few yards from the wagons as a barrier between the Indians and the women and kids.  Show them we’re well armed and ready to defend ourselves.  But don’t start nothing.  For God’s sake, don’t shoot unless they charge down, which ain’t likely since there is only four now.”

With long rifles rested across their saddles, handguns stuck in their belts, knives in their scabbards, the men rode proudly in defense of their rolling homes.

Most of the men were farmers and merchants by trade, but today, they were soldiers, ready to give battle, should the need arise.  Brave men were riding tall in their saddles, placing themselves in harm’s way, between their families and the Indians.

Jake continued to shout at the women drivers as he rode from front to the rear of the train, yelling at the mules and oxen to move at a faster pace.  A worried frown etched his face.

He knew if this turned into more than a hunting party, the settlers were in real trouble.  Indians always jumped at the chance to take a small train.  Especially one packed with women and children and needed supplies.  The weapons, mules, and horses of the white enemy were a valued trophy to parade in front of their lodges.

Oxen would be slaughtered for food.  The supplies the wagons carried, coupled with the weapons, powder and lead bullets, made the travelers a ripe plum, ready to be picked.  The younger women and girls would be taken back to camp to help the squaws and be used for their pleasure.  Sometimes a few younger men would be taken as replacements for warriors that had died in battle.

Jake hadn’t said so, but he suspected the Indians were Sioux or Cheyenne on their way to a winter campground.  If they had the numbers and felt their medicine strong, they would be coming in hard and fast.  He knew they had only one thought – the slaughter of the white eyes invading their homeland.

With a wave of his hat, Jake motioned to Slats, his scout.  “Slats, move ahead and see what’s up there.”

With a return wave with his hand, the mountain man spurred his mustang into a gallop.  In the gloom, he faded away in the time it took to wipe moisture from an eye.  The haze and mist in the air became heavier and collected on clothing and the backs of the animals.  The cold air turned each breath to fog.

Kate McAlaster drove the next to last wagon of forty-two.  Lester, her father, rode by the side of the wagon between her and the Indians.  He had his coat pulled up and his hat pulled down to break the wind.  She noticed him riding high in the saddle, scanning the ridge for any sign of the Indians.

She strained to see, but saw nothing but an empty ridge.  The warriors had vanished for the moment.  Then, suddenly, like phantom shadows, they appeared out of the haze, sitting motionless on their horses, watching the wagons.  Frozen statues, magnificent on their horses, stood watch, and then they were gone again.  A wave of heavy wet vapor spread over the hillside forming a gray veil.

A shout in front of the train brought her attention back from her father and the Indians.  Slats raced toward them as if the devil were on his coattail.

Jake waited for him to pull up beside him.  Several men turned their horses toward the wagon boss to hear the scouts report.

Slats looked back over his shoulder as he slid his horse to a stop and hastily proclaimed, in a soft voice, before the settlers arrived, “Boss, we got big trouble.  I spotted a big bunch of Sioux.  I guess about fifty, maybe more.  They’re strung out on the ridge.  They seem to be content to just watch for now, but they’re serious.  I’m dead certain they’re planning an attack.”

Jake shifted his eyes to the pilgrims that were riding toward them.  He spoke in a loud voice so all could hear, and didn’t down play their predicament.  “Fifty Sioux are dogging us.  This ain’t a good thing.”  He used a tone of voice the horsemen had never heard him use before.  If his words hadn’t made them realize the gravity of the situation, his voice did.

Slats sat on his horse, looking at the farmers that had left their safe homes for a new life in the west.  He had a very low opinion of the travelers.  Mountain men like Jake and Slats considered the settlers plumb stupid for coming out to the big empty with winter coming, and to make matters worse, bringing their women and kids along.

Slats got his nickname from his size when he was only a young twerp back in Ohio.  At thirteen, he stood a little over six feet tall, but had to turn broadside to cast a shadow.  Slats still wouldn’t break a hundred fifty pounds carrying his two handguns, a Hawkens .50 caliber rifle with powder, and bullets for them.

“How much farther to the campground?” Jake calmly asked.  He was hoping to keep from panicking the movers any more than the announcement had done.  “I want to get settled in before night.  That’s a good place to fort-up.”

“Not far.  Not over a half mile.  We’ll make it.  The savages ain’t in no hurry to do anything, as of now.  I might add, that worries me more than a mite.  It appears we’re only seeing a hunting party and the rest of the braves will move in during the night.”

Jake wished Slats would shut up.  He had already said enough on that subject to put the fear of God into the settlers.  He saw fright and panic in the eyes of a few of the men.  He knew that hysteria could be contagious.


Mountain Woman is available for purchase at:

Amazon Kindle for $2.99 or Borrow FREE w/Prime!


Connect with Johnny Fowler:

THE FRUGAL FIND OF THE DAY: Taken by the Cowboy, Julianne MacLean {$0.99 or Borrow FREE with Prime!}

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Julianne MacLean‘s Frugal Find Under Nine:

 

Description of Taken by the Cowboy:

HERO AND PROTECTOR
Former bounty hunter, expert gunslinger, and the toughest sheriff Dodge City has ever known, Truman Wade is a real man from the tip of his black Stetson right down to his spurs and leather boots. He’s never met his match in a gunfight, but he’s never met a gorgeous, gutsy woman from the twenty-first century either…

TORN BETWEEN TWO WORLDS
Newly single after a rocky breakup with her self-absorbed fiancé, newspaper columnist Jessica Delaney crashes her car in a lightning storm and soon finds herself dodging bullets in the Wild West. Before the night is out, she’s tossed in jail for a murder she didn’t commit, and if things don’t seem complicated enough, the impossibly handsome sheriff in charge of her arrest has danger written all over him – and a sexy swagger to die for. Jessica knows she needs to get home, but when Sheriff Wade’s enticing touch sets her passions on fire, she begins to wonder if fate has other plans for her, and soon she must choose between the life she longs for in the future… and the greatest love she’s ever known.

 

Accolade:

“Author Julianne MacLean has crafted a wonderfully fun time-travel romance that will keep readers turning the pages from the first to the last. This book has everything: a super-sexy hero, a spunky heroine (who loves shoes!), a dash of humor, and a suspenseful plot that makes for a perfect read. I couldn’t put this book down!” - Michelle P. Phillips


Amazon Reader Reviews:

Taken by the Cowboy currently has a Amazon reader review rating of 4.5 stars, with 27 reviews! Read the reviews here!


Excerpt from Taken by the Cowboy:

“What in God’s name happened?” someone asked.

“This man fell out of a window,” Jessica replied. “He needs help.”

The stranger ran toward her and together, they rolled the injured man onto his back. Jessica stared in horror at his face. A clean bullet hole gaped between his eyes, and blood trickled down his nose.

“Dear Lord,” the stranger said. He stood up and quickly backed away.

“Somebody call 911!” Jessica shouted. She pressed her ear to the man’s chest to listen for a heartbeat. When she heard nothing, she knew there was no hope, but she still wanted an ambulance. A cop car, too.

If there was such a thing in this backward place.

“Will somebody call an ambulance?” she shouted in frustration.

“Now…just be calm, miss,” the stranger said. “We don’t want any trouble.”

“What are you talking about?” she replied. “I don’t want to cause trouble. I’m trying to help him. Doesn’t anyone have a cell phone?”

That particular request was met with blank stares.

“I saw her wavin’ a gun around like some kind of lunatic!” someone offered.

“I wasn’t waving a gun,” she explained. “I was trying to kill a June bug.”

There was a series of ‘oohs’ and ‘ahs’ from the crowd as everyone backed away in unison.

Realizing she was quickly becoming a primary suspect in this man’s murder, Jessica raised both hands in the air and stood. “Look, everyone needs to stay calm. It wasn’t me. I was just trying to help him.”

“Do you know who this is?” the stranger asked.

Jessica shook her head. “No.”

“That’s Left Hand Lou!” someone called out from the crowd.

Before Jessica had a chance to comprehend what this meant, people rushed over to get a look at the corpse.

“He’s wanted in three states!” someone hollered. “You just killed the fastest draw this side of the Mississippi!”

What did they think she had done? She hadn’t shot him! And what did they mean—the fastest draw this side of the Mississippi? This wasn’t Gunsmoke, for pity’s sake.

“Wait a minute,” she said. “Seriously. There’s been a mistake.”

Just then, a deep voice cut through the commotion. “Can I ask what’s going on in this little gathering of yours?”

Unable to discern from where the voice had come, she looked all around through the darkness.

“Ma’am? I asked you a question.” The crowd parted, clearing a wide path for the inquiring man to approach.

 

Jessica was finally able to get a glimpse at him, although the brim of his black hat shadowed his face from the dim lantern light spilling out of the saloon.

He moved slowly toward her, and she was taken aback by how handsome he was, with dark hair, blue eyes, and a fit, muscular build.

Closing the distance between them, he pushed his open black coat to the side. His purpose was clear as he rested his large hand on an ivory-handled revolver holstered to his leather gun belt.

His trousers—also black—were snug and worn at the knees, and his boots were spurred. Jessica hadn’t actually looked at his feet, but as he walked, the sound of the spurs jingling alerted her senses to everything about him.

Someone moved aside, and a gentle stream of light reflected off the shiny star pinned to the man’s lapel.

It read: Sheriff.

Thank God.

He angled his head and spoke in low voice – sort of like Clint Eastwood, but not exactly. “Ma’am, you look a little distressed. Can I be of some assistance?”

His observation, which couldn’t have been closer to the truth, melted all her cool bravado in an instant, and she was so relieved, she could have grabbed hold of his shirt collar, pulled him toward her, and kissed him square on the lips.

“Yes, you can,” she replied. “I’m so glad you’re here. Thank you for coming so quickly.”

He chuckled softly, but the smile in his eyes was cold and calculating.

“I wouldn’t thank me just yet,” he drawled, as he wrapped his big hand around her arm and pulled her closer.

 

“Because by the look of things here, missy, you’re gonna be spending the night in my jailhouse.”

The crowd murmured approval, while Jessica glanced up at his ruggedly handsome features, bronzed by wind and sun, then cautiously lowered her eyes to the gun at his hip.

He shook his head at her, as if she’d been a very naughty girl, and said, “Tsk tsk tsk,” while she paused to think carefully about the best way to handle this.

*   *   *


Taken by the Cowboy is available for purchase at:

Amazon Kindle for $0.99 or Borrow FREE with Prime!


Connect with Julianne MacLean:

Website: http://www.juliannemaclean.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/JulianneMacLean

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JulianneMacLeanRomanceAuthor?ref=pb

Top Five Under Five Friday! {Westerns}

Happy Friday! Check out the Top Five Under Five bestselling Western eBooks from the Kindle Store!

 

 

#1 ~ Emmett & Gentry (an Emmett Love Western), John Locke ~ $0.99 {4.5 Stars, 35 Reviews}

#2Mattie, Judy Alter ~ $0.99 {4.5 Stars, 10 Reviews}

#3 The Daybreakers (The Sacketts), Louis L’Amour ~ $1.99 {4 Stars, 17 Reviews}

#4 Don’t Poke the Bear! (an Emmett Love Western), John Locke ~ $0.99 {4 Stars, 39 Reviews}

#5Follow the Stone (an Emmett Love Western), John Locke ~ $0.99 {4.5 Stars, 56 Reviews}

Click on the above covers or links to read more about and purchase the Top Five Under Five Bestselling eBooks at Amazon!

Nothing But Trouble, Lisa Mondello {$2.99}

Melanie Summers, a feisty zoologist with big dreams, has just made a deal with her father. She has to spend a full month in the Wyoming wilderness and show her father she can handle being in a remote area while managing her Type 1 diabetes before he’ll agree to fund an expedition for her to go to Africa. She knows he’s convinced she’ll fail.

But she’s not about to let any man underestimate what she can do. Especially not the sexy rodeo cowboy she’s hired to help get her through the month in the wilderness.

Stoney Buxton needs to raise cash fast to save the family ranch after a barn fire injured his father and left the family finances in ruin. Re-entering the rodeo circuit seems like the best way to get the money he needs. That is until Melanie Summers shows up at his ranch flashing easy money. To everyone else, her offer seems like the answer to all his prayers. But one look at her long legs and pouting lips and Stoney know this high society gal is going to be nothing but trouble for his cowboy heart.

The average Amazon reader review rating is currently 5 stars {1 review}.

THE FRUGAL FIND OF THE DAY: Hallowed Ground, David Niall Wilson & Steven Savile {$3.99}

Sponsored Post

David Niall Wilson’s Frugal Find Under Nine:

Description of Hallowed Ground:

“She died,” Chessie said. “She died, rose, and nearly died again. She comes. The crows know her – the crows guide her. She follows the sound of a crying child. She follows the drag of un-kept promises on her heart.” – Chessie – Hallowed Ground

“They came in the night with their creak-wheeled wagons and patchwork tents, rolling down through the gulch and up the other side to pitch camp. In Rookwood, they called it ‘Dead man’s Gulch,’ and in Rookwood, names were important. If you walked too far through that God-forsaken, dust-drowned ditch, you were bound to drag your boots through bones. If you felt something sharp dig into your heel, it could be a tooth taking a last bite of something hot and living. The Deacon stood in silent shadows watching their progress, occasionally glancing up into the pale, inadequate light of the waning moon.”

When a man known only as The Deacon set up camp outside Rookwood, a murder of crows took to unnatural, moonlit flight. The crows came to Rookwood; trouble soon to follow. Things were already strange in that God-forsaken town, but no one could have predicted the forces and fates about to meet in a dust-bowl clearing in the desert. A Preacher. A Demon. An Angel. A Gunslinger.

A bargain with the darkness was signed in blood, and broken, and as such deals usually do, it went south. Now the fate of lost lovers, faith healers, ancient Gods and the Devil himself collide in a circle of wagons tended by the damaged and deformed, the saved and the shorn. There’s a power come to Rookwood, and this one-horse town is about to be transformed. Such deals are only made and broken…on Hallowed Ground.

From Steven Savile, International bestselling author of Silver, The Last Angel, and The Sufferer’s Song, and David Niall Wilson, Bram Stoker Award-winner David Niall Wilson, author of Deep Blue, This is My Blood, & Heart of a Dragon, comes a tale of the old west, magic, enlightenment and damnation readers have said is like Stephen King’s The Gunslinger meets Daniel Knauf’s Carnivale

 

Accolade:

Wilson and Savile deliver a fabulous tale of risk, redemption, and restoration in this creepy horror tale set in the Old West. Their characters – both human and inhuman – leap off the page with the clarity of living, breathing people and their carefully chosen prose drives the story forward with a relentless pace that keeps you on the edge of your seat waiting for the final confrontation that looms in the distance. Hallowed Ground is a richly textured tale that will soon have fans clamoring for a sequel. Highly recommended.  – Joseph Nassise – Author of The Templar Chronicles & River Watch

 

Amazon Reader Review Rating:

Hallowed Ground currently has 5 stars. Read the reviews here.

 

An excerpt from Hallowed Ground:

They came in the night with their creak-wheeled wagons and patchwork tents, rolling down through the gulch and up the other side to pitch camp.  In Rookwood, they called it ‘”Dead ‘Man’s Gulch,”‘ and in Rookwood, names were important.  If you walked too far through that God-forsaken, dust-drowned ditch, you were bound to drag your boots through bones.  If you felt something sharp dig into your heel, it could be a tooth taking a last bite of something hot and living.  The Deacon stood in silent shadows watching their progress, occasionally glancing up into the pale, inadequate light of the waning moon.

He was a tall man, gaunt and pale.  His suit was dark, and despite the fact they traveled through the desert, he wore a long, sweeping coat even darker than the suit.  His hair was long, trailing down his back, dancing when the wind caressed it and dangling over the collar of his coat like thick moss.  His eyes were chips of gray ice, emotionless and cold.

The scouts had come to him two days back.  They’d found a location that suited his needs, not too close to the town, sheltered, with water nearby.  It was surrounded on two sides by rocky crags and bordered at its back by the gulch.  The Deacon timed their arrival to occur at night.  He preferred the moonlight.  Those with cause to ride out of town far enough – hunters and trappers – could watch the sunset over barren, forgotten ground. When it rose again, curious eyes would see tents glistening in the sun.  There was no breeze, had been no breeze for days, so the canvas wouldn’t flap in the wind.  It would look like a mirage to any who drew near enough to see it, and that suited The Deacon just fine.

His wagon was the first to cross the gulch, and as the horses dragged it up the long, dusty incline he fell into step with the front wheels and swung up beside the driver. Sanchez held the reigns lightly, but his knuckles went suddenly tight with tension as The Deacon settled into the seat.  Sanchez was an older man.  He’d come up as a boy from Mexico, and had traveled many long roads.

“Not much farther,” he said.  His gaze remained locked on the road ahead, and the tone of his voice was carefully neutral.

The Deacon was silent.  Behind them, the other wagons struggled to follow.  Some were pulled by horses, others by mules, and still others couldn’t manage the crossing without their passengers crawling out like rats from sinking ships to push and pull.  They might as well not have existed, for all the attention The Deacon spared them.

They entered the camp area and circled once.  Sanchez made no move to stop; he waited. Eventually, on the second circuit of that open space, The Deacon grunted, and they rolled to a halt.  From where they sat the moon was just visible between two rocky crags.  It cast a beam of silver light that fell across the wagon, slicing it in half.

“Here,” The Deacon said.

Sanchez hopped down and disappeared toward the rear of the wagon.  The Deacon sat still as a wooden Indian and watched the first of the following wagons enter the clearing.  They crawled in like vermin. They squabbled briefly over location.  Two big, burly roustabouts swaggered into the center – a large, vacant expanse – and began barking orders.

The main tent would hide them from one another.  The wagons and tents would provide alleys to hide in and shadows for his flock to call their own.  The main tent gave the camp it’s heart.

The Deacon slid down from the wagon’s seat and strode to the middle of the clearing.  Among the wagons and tents, conversation stilled.  Motion ceased.  They watched as he stopped dead center and turned slowly.  He missed nothing.  He placed each one of them, etched their locations into his mind.  Then he closed his eyes, rolled his head back so his face was to the sky, and glanced up into the pale face of the moon.

He raised his arms.

Maybe it was the sudden motion.  Maybe it was one of those coincidental moments in time where two concurrent events blend to a single image.  The Deacon’s long, dark cloak flapped around him like a shroud, or full, dark wings.

From the trees lining the gulch, the crooked, drooping shrubs and the craggy outcroppings of rock, a black cloud rose.  They screamed to the night, spilling into the sky like a dark tide.  At first they resembled a vast flock of bats – or something worse.  Only after they spread and draped the sky was their true nature revealed.

“Rooks,” a man breathed.

The Deacon opened his eyes and watched as the birds dispersed and dove, winding out of the sky like small tornadoes of shadow and returning to their roosts – or to different ones.  Further away from the camp. Further from the center.

He knew they were not rooks.  They were crows.  The old country had been alive with rooks, but this land…the carrion feeders here were larger, and darker.  Still, the significance was not lost on him.

“And the rooks shall rise,” The Deacon intoned, his voice carrying across the clearing and into the night.  ”They shall rise and announce the coming of death.  They shall carry the souls of the faithful home.”

He knelt in the dust and pressed the tip of his finger into the dirt.  He circled that finger slowly, drawing a pattern.  The clearing might as well have been empty.  There was no sound.  The wind whirled around him and lifted the collar of his long coat to ripple across the brim of his hat.

As he worked, he spoke in very low tones, words too soft to be understood.  Though the earth was hard and dry, his finger dug through the parched soil.  As it passed, it left a series of symbols in an odd, symmetrical sequence.  No one breathed; as if afraid the sound would reach the rooks and bid them to return.  None was ready at that moment to be called to glory.

The Deacon rose.  He turned once more, and as he spun he whispered to the wind in each quarter in its turn.  He stepped away from the center, and when he’d reached the corner of his wagon, the two roustabouts returned to the clearing and took his place.  They stepped up to the point where The Deacon had drawn in the dirt, and their four strong arms drove a sharp, rounded stake into the ground.  It was as big around as the base of a small tree, and even their combined strength could only barely embed it in the earth.  A third man stepped forward with a large wooden mallet.  The two big men knelt, and the third man drove the stake home.  He swung the mallet between the two without regard to the proximity of their heads or hands.  His aim was perfect.  Four hard shots and the base stabilized.  It would hold the center post of the main tent.

Sanchez knelt in the shadows beside the wagon and watched as The Deacon passed and began to climb the side of the ridge, winding up and away from the encampment without a backward glance.  When the tall man was out of sight, Sanchez rose.  His own belongings were heaped beneath a small tree a few yards away.  There wasn’t much, a canvas bag and a bundled lean-to he could erect in a few moments, or take down just as quickly.

He moved to the back of The Deacon’s wagon and screwed two tall metal supports down until they rested on the ground and held the rear upright.  He did the same at the front.  He placed a mason jar half full of whiskey on the wagon rail and watched as the liquid straightened into as flat a line as he could get it.  He locked the supports in place and unhitched the horses.  He knew he’d have to groom them and feed them, but it had to wait.  When The Deacon came back off that cliff, he’d expect his quarters to be ready, and Sanchez had no intention of disappointing his master.

He whistled once sharply, and a slender, dirty boy materialized out of the milling workers erecting the big tent and finalizing the rest of the camp.  Without speaking, the two of them hurried to the back end of the wagon.  When the tarps that covered the bed were unbound, they grabbed handles at the rear and slid wooden slats out until they locked. At the end of this, they dropped a set of folding stairs to the ground, then unscrewed and locked the rear supports, effectively doubling the wagon’s length.  A series of pulleys and ropes allowed them to quickly pull the tarps up and over the top – not patchy or rotted canvas, like so many of the other tents, but white and thick, catching the moonlight and reflecting it back at the sky.

Once the tarps were in place, the boy disappeared back into the shadows, and Sanchez mounted the stairs.  He hated these moments more than any others.  The space within the tent had taken on the aspect of The Deacon himself.  He flipped the cot down from the side of the wagon, and the heavy wooden desk on the opposite side.  There was a small fold out table at the very front, right up against the wagon’s bed.  Sanchez lowered it into place, and glanced around.  Everything had remained in place during the trip.  He was particularly happy to see that the books had not tipped from their shelves.  On several occasions he’d had to straighten them and return them to their places, and he’d found the touch of the leather repulsive.  He studiously avoided reading the titles burned into their spines.

He unrolled The Deacon’s bedroll onto the cot and took a final glance around to be certain he’d forgotten nothing, and then stepped back down to the dusty earth.  He let the flap of the tent fall into place behind him, and moved to the shadows, seating himself cross-legged beside his bags.  He would find a place to erect his own camp only after The Deacon had returned and settled in.  He risked a glance up at the cliff, but saw only shadows.  He settled against the gnarled base of a tree and closed his eyes – but he did not sleep.

‡‡‡

The Deacon stood far above the camp at the tip of an outcropping, facing the town of Rookwood.  Too many trees and obstacles stood between his perch and town for him to catch any glimmer of firelight, but he knew they were there.  He felt them.

As he stood, he tugged a rawhide thong that hung about his neck until a long, thin pouch came free of his shirt collar.  He held it in his hands, but he didn’t glance down at it. The soft, supple leather rippled between his fingers, as though something inside sought a weakness.  The Deacon raised his gaze to the moon and gripped the pouch more tightly.  His hand shook, and glimmers of light leaked between his fingers, though he took no notice.  The pouch had begun to glow, and trails of wispy vapor slid out, wound about him, and constricted.

Miles away he sensed their heartbeats.  He heard murmured whispers.  He felt the heat of their couplings and the pain of their illness.  He sensed the life around him, and hungered for it.  It gnawed at him and teased the corners of his sanity.  The trembling in his hand spread until he stood, weak and shaking.  He staggered half a step forward, and only caught himself at the brink of the cliff. Below, his followers scurried like busy ants, constructing their nests and erecting the great tent.  Another step and he’d have planted himself in their center like a dark, rotten seed.

He stuffed the pouch back into his shirt, and shuddered as it touched his flesh.  For a moment, a sickening greenish light seeped out near his chin, and then faded.  He stepped back from the edge of the rock, and turned away.  Without a backward glance, he began the arduous climb back down from the rocks.  The tremor had left his hands, and his steps were strong and even, but his face was even paler than usual, and his expression was strained.

He reached the bottom, passed by Sanchez without a word or a glance, and disappeared into his tent.  Sanchez waited a while longer, until the lantern flickered to life inside, and then slipped into the shadows to find a small corner to stake off as his own.  It was late, and the morning would come far too soon.

Near The Deacon’s tent, all eyes were averted.  None took notice of the strange shadows dancing across the back-lit canvas, or questioned why – at times, there seemed to be more than one.

It had begun.

 

Hallowed Ground is available at:

Amazon Kindle for $3.99

 

Connect with David Niall Wilson & Steven Savile:

David’s Website: http://www.davidniallwilson.com

Steven’s Website: http://www.stevensavile.com

David’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/david.niall.wilson

Steven’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/stevensavile

Hallowed Ground, David Niall Wilson & Steven Savile {$3.99}

“She died,” Chessie said. “She died, rose, and nearly died again. She comes. The crows know her – the crows guide her. She follows the sound of a crying child. She follows the drag of un-kept promises on her heart.” – Chessie – Hallowed Ground

“They came in the night with their creak-wheeled wagons and patchwork tents, rolling down through the gulch and up the other side to pitch camp. In Rookwood, they called it ‘Dead man’s Gulch,’ and in Rookwood, names were important. If you walked too far through that God-forsaken, dust-drowned ditch, you were bound to drag your boots through bones. If you felt something sharp dig into your heel, it could be a tooth taking a last bite of something hot and living. The Deacon stood in silent shadows watching their progress, occasionally glancing up into the pale, inadequate light of the waning moon.”

When a man known only as The Deacon set up camp outside Rookwood, a murder of crows took to unnatural, moonlit flight. The crows came to Rookwood; trouble soon to follow. Things were already strange in that God-forsaken town, but no one could have predicted the forces and fates about to meet in a dust-bowl clearing in the desert. A Preacher. A Demon. An Angel. A Gunslinger.

A bargain with the darkness was signed in blood, and broken, and as such deals usually do, it went south. Now the fate of lost lovers, faith healers, ancient Gods and the Devil himself collide in a circle of wagons tended by the damaged and deformed, the saved and the shorn. There’s a power come to Rookwood, and this one-horse town is about to be transformed. Such deals are only made and broken…on Hallowed Ground.

From Steven Savile, International bestselling author of Silver, The Last Angel, and The Sufferer’s Song, and David Niall Wilson, Bram Stoker Award-winner David Niall Wilson, author of Deep Blue, This is My Blood, & Heart of a Dragon, comes a tale of the old west, magic, enlightenment and damnation readers have said is like Stephen King’s The Gunslinger meets Daniel Knauf’s Carnivale

What Readers are saying:

“A surreal, pulp school, darkly fantastic oater that sets all the elements of your favorite western tropes on their ears.”

“a fabulous tale of risk, redemption, and restoration in this creepy horror tale set in the Old West.”

“HALLOWED GROUND is very well-written and makes excellent use of its dusty frontier setting, with influences that seem to range from Ray Bradbury to Sergio Leone.”

The average Amazon reader review is currently 5 stars {5 reviews}.

Click here to read more about and purchase Hallowed Ground for $3.99 from Amazon

 

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