SHE BROKE HIS HEART
Jessie Long knew she made the right decision years ago. Grady Matthews wanted a ranch and a home full of kids, and she couldn't give him that. So she cut him loose for his own good. They went their separate ways—Grady left to join the Navy and Jessie stayed home.
Now a deadly twister has flattened their hometown, and it's brought them back together—and back to square one. The passion's still there, and the easy understanding. Even the way they care for the orphaned baby found in the aftermath just seems to fit. For Grady, that's enough. He's sure they can make a life together. But for Jessie, the secret that tore them apart is still hiding under the surface. And she can't face losing Grady a second time.
I enjoyed the author's voice, the way she writes, the story is full of humor, love, and life. It is real, the devastating tornado that has destroyed the town, the loss of material goods, homes, businesses, schools taking a toll on everyone. The characters are realistic, they are strong, capable, stubborn, and caring.
I love Grady, he is easy to like, straightforward man, honorable, loyal, and loving. He is not afraid to show his feelings, he steps up where he is needed. The pain from when Jessie had broken his heart, by ending their engagement, was palpable.
Jessie was emotional character, she pushes and pulls as her feelings change. I wanted to yell at her a few times, the way she kept playing with Grady's heart was not fair. It seemed like her whole identity was bound into the fact that she might not be able to have children of her own.
The journey Grady and Jessie have to take is an emotional one. There is so much history they have to sort out, future plans to be made. There were several swoon worthy moments, sweet and tender, as well hot passion, and lots of arguing and bickering. But most of all there was love, caring, family, friends, and a town championing through a devastation
~ Four Spoons
Rancher and single dad Jack Colton must face an assassin in the thrilling first book of The Coltons of Oklahoma…
A beautiful stranger appears at the Colton ranch during a party, and Jack is none too pleased. With ties to his ex-wife, Tracy McCain claims to be on a mission to bond with his son. But this intriguing widow also has a target on her back. As the Colton family brings Tracy under its broad wing, a relentless assassin puts everyone in jeopardy. Jack's protective instincts go into overdrive…and only fuel his secret attraction to Tracy. Living closely together under Jack's roof, the heat between them starts to sizzle. In fact, the only thing stronger than Jack's heady desire for Tracy is his will to keep her safe…so that one day they can become a family.
The Colton siblings have a close bond, that stand against everything. They are willing to stand up for each other as needed, have each others back, and always ready to some fun banter with each other.
When Tracy arrives at the ranch, Jack feels the instant attraction towards her. But the trust and acceptance of her presence at the ranch comes much slower. As the threats to Tracy's life start, Jack's protective instincts kicks in. The more Jack and Tracy get to know each other, the hotter the attraction burns. I liked how the relationship is built up, and even though passion runs hot, the heat level is kept rather low, the love scenes behind the closed doors, mostly.
The repeated attacks towards Tracy's life brings up the tension and danger at the ranch. It is carefully twined through the story, and intensity of the jeopardy at hand, the life and death situations bring Tracy and Jack even closer together. Tracy's willingness to protect Jack's son opening up the doors for trust between them.
I enjoyed the story, the characters are interesting, the ranch life full of satisfying hard work. There were some questions left in my mind, but this being the book one in the new series, I am sure there will be answers in the future installments. Fierce and intense start to the series
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
All the Right Places
Riley O’Brien & Co. # 1
By: Jenna Sutton
Releasing June 2, 2015
The first in a brand new contemporary romance series starring the men and women who are determined to keep the billion-dollar denim dynasty, Riley O’Brien & Co, on top, but aren’t about to let success stand in the way of love…
Amelia Winger is a small-town girl with big dreams of becoming a successful designer. So when she gets a gig designing accessories for denim empire Riley O’Brien & Co., it’s a dream come true. Amelia can handle the demanding job, but she isn’t quite prepared for sexy CEO Quinn O’Brien. She’s doing her best to keep things professional, but the attraction sparking between them makes it personal. And so does the secret project she's working on behind his back...
Quinn’s not interested in the new accessories, but he is interested in the woman designing them. Amelia is smart, sexy, and talented, and he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about her since they met. Mixing business and pleasure isn’t wise, but that doesn’t stop him from coming up with excuses to spend time with her. He thinks he understands the risk he’s taking when he gets involved with Amelia. But he doesn’t know he’s risking a lot more than his heart.
Derrière. Ass. Back porch. Badonkadonk. Rump. No matter what you called it, the butt was Quinn O’Brien’s favorite part of the human body.
Yes, he had the typical male appreciation for the female form, but truly, most of his interest was professional. In fact, some would say it was part of his DNA. He was the fifth generation of O’Brien to be involved in the family business, Riley O’Brien & Co., proud designers and manufacturers of blue jeans since 1845.
“Pay attention to how our jeans conform to the wearer’s body, especially the butt,” his father had schooled him and his younger brother when they were kids. At the time, Quinn hadn’t realized scoping out every backside within sight might cause problems, especially when he stared just a bit too long at a crooked seam on a stranger’s rear.
And right now, that’s exactly what he was doing—staring at a stranger’s ass hard enough to make his eyes cross. Who could blame him, though, since it was right at eye level above him on the escalator? And oh, what an ass it was—high and tight, yet still nicely rounded.
He sighed. The woman in front of him might have a great ass, but she wasn’t wearing Rileys. That was a big mark against her in his book.
Shifting his gaze from her curvy backside, he reviewed the brown leather belt encircling her slender waist. Embellished with beads and intricate stitching, it was eye-catching, not gaudy at all.
But it wasn’t nearly as eye-catching as the red corkscrews of hair that fell down her back almost to her waist. They glinted with gold and amber from the early morning sun shining through the skyscraper’s windows. Her hair was so curly it kinked in some places, creating sharp angles that made him want to pull on a strand just to see how quickly it would recoil.
The woman stepped off the escalator into the reception area of Riley O’Brien & Co.’s global headquarters, cutting his perusal short. Unlike most high-rises in downtown San Francisco, Riley Plaza’s first floor was filled with retail space, including the requisite Starbucks and a small shop that sold Riley merchandise. From the first floor, an escalator brought visitors and employees to the mezzanine level, where they checked in with reception or headed to their offices.
He pulled his gaze from the woman in just enough time to avoid tripping over the escalator lip and crashing onto the floor. Yeah, ogling asses could be hazardous.
As the redhead made her way to the reception desk, Quinn held up a hand and called out a greeting to the security guard posted by the double doors that led to the executive offices.
“Hey, Frank, did you see the new commercial last night?”
Riley O’Brien & Co. had recently launched a new advertising campaign featuring several well-known male athletes. The first commercial highlighting Quinn’s best friend, Nick Priest, had debuted last night during Sunday night football.
Priest and Quinn had played football together at the University of Southern California. While Quinn’s football career had ended when he graduated from USC, Priest had gone pro. He was one of the best wide receivers in the NFL, and his talent transformed every team he joined.
“Yeah, I saw it,” Frank answered. “If you wanted to make women all over America lust after Priest even more than they do now, you succeeded.”
Quinn laughed. “So, you thought Priest looked hot?”
“Hell, no,” Frank barked. “But the wife couldn’t take her eyes off the TV while he was on-screen.”
“Who can blame her? She’s had to look at your ugly face for more than thirty years. She needs a break.”
Frank grinned and shot him the bird. “Get to work, son.”
Meet the author
Jenna Sutton spent most of her career as an award-winning journalist covering business-related topics including healthcare, commercial real estate, retail, and technology. Nowadays she writes about hot, lovable guys and the smart, sexy women who make them crazy. It’s the culmination of a lifelong dream, and she feels so lucky to be able to do it.
Jenna has a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Texas Christian University and a Master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern University.
Jenna and her husband live in a 103-year-old house in Texas.
Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads
THE WIDOW'S PROTECTOR
Lark Porter thinks she'll find answers about her husband's death when she returns to their former home, but someone doesn't like the questions she's asking. She's quickly taken captive, and all that stands between her and certain death is a mysterious stranger telling her to trust him if she wants to get out alive. Hostage Rescue and Extraction Team member Cyrus Mitchell marvels at Lark's strength and determination to survive. The closer they get to freedom, the more dangerous the situation becomes. Once free, though, it takes all the skills and training Cyrus has to outmaneuver the deadly killers on their trail.
Mission: Rescue—No job is too dangerous for these fearless heroes
If you enjoy heart stopping action filled dangerous situations, mixed with clean and sweet romance, and team working together to catch the criminals, you will love this story.
From the beginning of the book, the story kept a hold of me, the danger was present and palpable, the escape from the cult perilous, the continuing attacks for Lark's life kept everyone, including me, on the toes and fearing for her life.
The connection Lark and Cyrus have, is tender and sweet, adorable. They seem to bring the best in each other. Cyrus respects and honors the marriage she had, and the memory of the dead husband. The few affectionate moments they have in the midst of the danger made me sigh. The conversations they have, sharing with each other about their lives built a trust and understanding between them. When everything in the situation is out of control, they trust God to guide them, and keep them safe, reminding each other, that He is in control.
The HEART team's work is seamless and professional. The banter between them an obvious sign how much they care for each other, the respect for each others abilities clear in their interactions.
I enjoyed this story immensely, and I'm looking forward to more in the series
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
One particular secret could tear them apart... Yolanda Sanchez had never been a "follow your bliss" type of girl, always preferring to make practical choices. But since her mom's will stipulated that she had to fulfill a dream with her inheritance, here she was, opening a used book store. With consummate dreamer Adam Snapp, an artist and childhood friend, as her handyman. So much for her comfort zone. But she needs help, and Adam needs the work. It's strictly business...until they discover a mysterious book about Scorpion Ridge history. One that reveals not just secrets of their families' pasts, but how deeply intertwined their futures really are.
Fascinating history of the small town starts to unravel, when old secrets are coming to light.
Adam and Yolanda take on a project to discover what is behind an old book, agitation that comes from the elderly, when asking them about the past, and one intriguing visit from an old lady, that everyone claims should be dead.
The history of the town was interesting, and the main focus of the tale. At times the story moves on a bit slowly because of the repeat of the same events from the past by different person's memories, same repeated from a different view point.
Adam and Yolanda are great together, the connection being more about working together in different projects, than romantic. Soon they start sharing more about their lives, dreams, and hopes for the future with each other. The feelings grow slowly, the attraction comes suddenly, and in the end the conclusion comes as a surprise.
Both Yolanda and Adam have to grow, accept new points of view during the story, and take new responsibilities, that they didn't consider before.
For anyone interested in the history of small towns, how all seems to be connected somehow, and how one man's actions can affect into many people's lives decades later, will surely enjoy this book
~ Three Spoons
Lady Faith Takes a Leap
The Baxendale Sisters # 2
By: Maggi Andersen
Releasing June 1, 2015
Faith Baxendale has always been a dutiful daughter who wishes to please her father. She doesn’t have an adventurous bone in her body, unlike her younger sister, Hope, gallivanting around Italy with their aunt, nor is she rebellious like her older sister, Honor. And so unlike Charity, who loses herself in creative pursuits. Even Mercy, at fifteen, shows more backbone!
Now Faith’s first Season has ended with no clear choice of a husband, and her father’s patience is wearing thin. He urges her to marry the man of his choice. It doesn’t help when the neighbor’s son, Lord Vaughn Winborne, has returned home for the hunt ball. The black sheep of the family, Vaughn has fascinated Faith since she was in the schoolroom.
Vaughn returns to Brandreth Park, determined to get his life on track. His elder brother, Chaloner, Marquess of Brandreth, still looks upon him as a reckless youth. But Vaughn is now twenty-six and determined to prove Chaloner wrong.
A chance comes in the form of a dire scandal not of his making, and Vaughn must learn to trust Faith who, when it’s all said and done, has always known her own mind.
Faith settled on a rug beneath the spreading branches of a chestnut tree. She approved of Charity’s choice, a scenic spot near the river. At a distant boom, birds flew from the trees. “Another volley of gunshot,” Faith said to her younger sister. “The Brandreths’ guests must be enjoying a successful day’s shooting.”
“Mm.” Charity stood her easel on a flat piece of ground near the riverbank. “I’ll work here. The light is perfect.” She picked up her brush and palette. Taller than her sisters, Charity bent over her canvas and flicked back a fair lock, closer in color to their mother’s, a shade darker than Faith’s. “Are you looking forward to their ball?” Charity’s voice held little disappointment at still being too young to attend.
“Yes. Seeing Honor and Edward, especially.” Faith angled her lacy yellow parasol to block the sun, which was still surprisingly hot, and glanced at her sister with a sigh. Charity’s straw hat swung carelessly by its blue-striped ribbons. “Mama will have a fit if you get freckles on your nose like Mercy.”
“Mercy is devising a lotion to fade them,” Charity murmured. “It contains something called deliquated oil of tar.”
“I wouldn’t let that anywhere near my face, and neither should you,” Faith said.
“I like her perfume, though,” Charity said. “Cinnamon and cloves I think. She’s really quite inventive.”
“She is, but I prefer Attar of Roses,” Faith said.
“Mm?” Charity murmured, now sunk in contemplation of her canvas.
Faith turned a page of the Minerva Press novel her elder sister, Honor, had smuggled into the house for her to read. Father had banned them, saying they filled a woman’s head with ridiculous notions. The story proved to be enjoyable, but Faith felt guilty every time she opened the book.
“I think I’ll paint that big oak tree over the river. I like the way the sun dapples the leaves.” Charity dabbed at her palette with a paintbrush, mixing paint.
The river bordered Brandreth Park, now linked with Highland Manor through Honor’s marriage to Edward. The eldest, Lord Chaloner, was Marquess of Brandreth, their father having died some years ago.
Faith closed the book, her attention caught by a fragile yellow butterfly alighting on the tree trunk beside her. Her recent conversation with her father made her too unsettled to read. It was true; her Season had been a success of sorts. A whirlwind of soirees, balls, card parties, musical evenings, and routes. But choosing a husband was like wandering in a hedge maze. One way might look promising, but then it led to a dead-end.
She sorely missed Honor’s wise counsel. As Honor and Edward had a farm in Surrey, the family didn’t see much of them. But they were coming tomorrow for the Brandreths’ hunt ball. Honor was so practical she was sure to help Faith order her scrambled thoughts. Faith glanced at Charity, painting furiously, lost in her art. At sixteen, Charity was too young to discuss the important matters one faced in the grown-up world.
A gentle breeze carried the smell of pine and swayed the willow fronds dipping gracefully into the water. Another barrage of shots sent a flurry of birds into the sky. On the far bank, a dog barked.
“Pheasant for dinner tonight,” Charity said. “Chaloner has promised to send some.”
Faith sat up as a hound exploded from the bushes on the opposite bank, followed closely by a tall, dark-haired man. He stopped and raised his hand to shade his eyes.
Charity left her easel and walked to the river’s edge. “Good afternoon,” she called back.
Faith clambered to her feet, her heart racing, as he removed his hat and bowed, revealing hair midnight black and silky straight. Lord Vaughn, a younger and more dazzling version of her brother-in-law, Edward. She hadn’t seen him since, at sixteen, she’d watched him in the Brandreth wood bagging birds for the hunt ball dinner. That had been two years ago, and she was too young to attend. She had climbed a tree for a better view until Honor had come and dragged her home. Her father had made no secret of his disapproval of Vaughn, who he saw as the most troublesome of the Brandreth men. He’d expressed relief when he’d gone to live with his sister, Sibella, and her husband in York to manage the Marquess of Strathairn’s horse stud.
But here Vaughn was, standing legs slightly apart, shotgun over his shoulder, chatting to Charity across the water, and Faith, normally never lost for a word, mute as a Royal swan.
“You must remember my sister Faith?” Charity was asking him.
“My lord.” Faith stepped forward and dropped into a mindless curtsey.
A rich chuckle came across the water. “Don’t drop your parasol into the water, Lady Faith.”
Vaughn looked different somehow, broader in the shoulders. He had been absent from all of the social events spent in the Brandreths’ company since Honor and Edward had married. Thoughts flew through her mind. Was he engaged? She hadn’t heard of it, and anyway, what did it matter?
Charity stepped closer and gave her a nudge with her arm. “Say something,” she hissed.
Faith cleared her throat. “Has your shoot been a successful one, my lord?”
“Feeble,” Charity whispered.
Vaughn put a hand to his ear. “Your soft voice carries away on the wind, Lady Faith.”
She raised her voice. “Do you intend to stay long in Tunbridge Wells?”
He frowned. “I’m not sure of my plans.” He shook his head. “Difficult to carry on a conversation while shouting.” He turned away.
Faith firmed her lips, annoyed with herself; she’d lost an opportunity to make a good impression. But Vaughn wasn’t done with them; he’d put down his gun and walked farther down the bank. Then he backed up and took a flying leap over a narrow part of the river, alighting on a rock mid-stream. He regained his balance and jumped again, landing a few yards downstream from them. Vaughn dusted his leather breeches and strolled over to them. He swept off his hat and bowed.
Up close, he was even more devastating. There was a new maturity in his face, Faith decided with a swallow.
Meet the author:
Maggi Andersen lives in the countryside outside Sydney, Australia, with her lawyer husband. Her study overlooks the creek at the bottom of the garden where ducks gather. Kookaburras and cockatoos call from the trees. After gaining a BA in English and an MA in Creative Writing, and raising three children, Maggi now indulges her passion for writing.
She writes in several genres, contemporary and historical romances, mysteries and young adult novels. You’ll find adventure and elements of danger in everyone.
Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads