27 May 2018

*Read a Deleted Scene & Enter to Win!* THE WIDOW'S WATCHER by Eliza Maxwell

Genre: Literary Fiction 
Publisher: Lake Union Press
Date of Publication: March 29, 2018
Number of Pages: 286 

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From Eliza Maxwell, the bestselling author of The Unremembered Girl, comes a gripping novel about the mysteries that haunt us and the twists of fate that can unravel them…
Living in the shadow of a decades-old crime that stole his children from him, reclusive Lars Jorgensen is an unlikely savior. But when a stranger walks onto the ice of a frozen Minnesota lake, her intentions are brutally clear, and the old man isn’t about to let her follow through.
Jenna Shaw didn’t ask for Lars’s help, nor does she want it. After he pulls her from the brink, however, Jenna finds her desire to give up challenged by their unlikely friendship. In Jenna, Lars recognizes his last chance for redemption. And in her quest to solve the mysteries of Lars’s past and bring him closure, Jenna may find the way out of her own darkness. 
But the truth that waits threatens to shatter it all. When secrets are surrendered and lies are laid bare, Jenna and Lars may find that accepting the past isn’t their greatest challenge. Can they afford the heartbreaking price of forgiveness?

"There was a moment I had to tell myself that this is just a book..."
- Goodreads reviewer
"A well-paced story of healing, forgiveness and tragedy, with enough unexpected twists to keep readers guessing.”
-- Amber Cowie, author of Rapid Falls

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AUTHOR’S NOTE: This scene gives us a glimpse into Jenna’s childhood and her relationship with her mother, who had just sent nine-year-old Jenna to the store to buy cigarettes. I didn’t want to do it, but in the end, it didn’t move the story forward, so it ended up on the cutting room floor. I’m pleased to be able to share it now.

In the end, she'd gift wrapped her mother's cigarettes, pleased with the neat, tidy corners she managed. Opening her new pens, Jenna used one to write "I love you, Mom" on the blank card with the balloon and slid it into the envelope, tucking it by the corner beneath the red bow that she affixed to the top of the package.

When Kaye's heels gave their sharp, familiar clip-clop across the wooden floors of the living room, Jenna jumped up and smiled as her mother exited the house.

Kaye was polished and shining, lovely despite the lines she bemoaned around her eyes as she slathered them with cold cream every night before bed.

Jenna held her hand out with the little gift, so pretty and neat.

"What's this?" Kaye had asked her, her head tilted to the side.

"It's for you," Jenna said.

"For me?" She flipped the little box over and ran a lacquered nail beneath the flap Jenna had taped down and began to unwrap the package.

When she saw Jenna had gift wrapped her cigarettes, she gave her daughter a bemused smile.
"Aren't you a silly thing," Kaye said, shaking her head. She leaned over and placed a palm on Jenna's cheek.

"Listen, I have to go to work for a little while," she said.

"But it's Saturday."

"Saturday or not, we still have bills to pay, Jenna." Kaye's voice had gone stern and distracted as she opened her handbag to deposit the cigarettes inside.

"I'll be home later," she'd said, glancing up the street at the sound of her boss's green Oldsmobile turning the corner.

"Maybe we'll go out and get a pizza tonight," she said with a smile. "Celebrate. Would you like that?"
Jenna nodded.

"How's my hair look?" she asked, fluffing the brunette locks she'd washed and set that morning. But the Oldsmobile had pulled alongside the front of the house and gave a honk, so Kaye didn't wait for a reply.

She clip-clopped her way down the steps.

"Oh, Jenny," she turned and pranced a few steps back toward her daughter. "Throw that away for me, will you?"

She pressed the crumpled wad of wrapping paper into Jenna's hands. The red bow and the little card, unopened, were still attached.

"Thanks, Hon," she said. She gave her daughter a wink and a wave as she hurried to the waiting car.


Eliza Maxwell lives in Texas with her ever-patient husband and two kids. She's an artist and writer, an introvert and a British cop drama addict. She loves nothing more than to hear from readers.

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Three Winners! 1ST PRIZE: Signed Copy + $25 Amazon Gift Card 2ND PRIZE: Signed Copy + $10 Amazon Gift Card 3RD PRIZE: Signed Copy
MAY 22-31, 2018
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15 May 2018

*Giveaway Alert & Excerpt!* BEYOND CONTROL by Kat Martin

The Texas Trilogy, Book 3
Kat Martin
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Zebra
Date of Publication: May 29, 2018
Number of Pages: 368
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Present Danger

When Victoria Bradford got engaged, she told herself to give love a chance. Six months later, she's on the run from her angry, abusive ex-fiancé with her four-year-old daughter and nowhere to go.

Seventy miles north of Dallas, the Iron River Ranch is pretty much nowhere. That’s what its new owner, Josh Cain, wanted when he came back from Afghanistan. Big skies, quiet nights, no trouble.

One look tells Josh the pretty redhead with the adorable little girl will give him trouble of the most personal kind. But he’s seen trouble before, and he doesn't scare easy. Not when “accidents” start happening around the ranch. Not when Tory’s best friend back in Phoenix is abducted and brutalized. Not even when it looks like their current problems are only the tip of the iceberg.

But if he gets too close to fierce, determined Tory, Josh knows his nights are going to be anything but quiet. And that’s one possibility no amount of training can prepare him for...

“As the excitement in Iron Springs continues, two strangers with tragic pasts form an unbreakable bond. Beyond Control is the last installment in the Texas Trilogy. It’s delightfully fast-paced, riveting, and amazingly compelling. Martin has outdone herself with unpredictable twists and suspense that will leave readers panting for more. Definitely a must-read for readers who enjoy mystery, thrills, and romance to spice up their life.” – RT Reviews Top Pick

"Bestseller Martin brings her Texas Trilogy … to a hair-raising finish with the gripping tale of a single mother on the run and the Marine veteran who offers her a second chance at happily-ever-after. Martin has a consummate skill for developing the most loveable and the most despicable characters; readers will cheer when sadistic Damon meets his well-deserved end. Martin’s finely described Texas is a delight." – Publishers Weekly


Click HERE to read part one of the excerpt from the
Lone Star Book Blog Tours 5/13/18 tour stop with The Page Unbound blog!
Iron River Ranch
Iron Springs, Texas

“May I help you?” he asked, and she thought that at least he was polite.

“My name is Tory Ford. I’m looking for Joshua Cain. Is that you?” He had blue eyes and a cleft in his chin. From a purely physical standpoint, the man was flat out hot.

“I’m Josh Cain. What can I do for you?”

“I saw your ad in the Iron Springs Gazette. You’re looking for a stable hand. I’m here to apply for the job.”

He just shook his head. “I’m afraid it’s a man’s job, Ms. Ford. Mucking out stalls and cleaning tack, feeding the livestock. It isn’t something you’d want to do.”

“Work isn’t supposed to be fun, Mr. Cain. That’s why they call it work. I can muck out stalls, clean tack, and feed stock as well as anyone else.”

“Sorry. I’m looking for a man. I appreciate you’re coming out, but--“

“There are laws, Mr. Cain. Equal rights for women. Have you never heard of that? Lawsuits against discrimination?”

His jaw hardened. His eyebrows came down in a frown. “Are you kidding me? You’re going to sue me because I won’t hire you to shovel horseshit out of the barn?”

She could feel the heat creeping into her cheeks. With her fair skin, and fiery red hair, there was no way to hide her embarrassment.

She looked him straight in the face. “I need this job, Mr. Cain. I need the house that comes with it.” She forced herself to smile. “Why don’t we compromise? You give me three days to prove I’m up to the job. If I’m not, I won’t give you any more trouble. Three days. If you don’t think I can handle the work, I’ll leave. I won’t argue, I’ll just go.”

A muscle jerked in his cheek. He didn’t like being pressured. He looked at her hard, then those condemning blue eyes traveled over her shoulder to something behind her.
“Who is that?”

She didn’t have to turn to know Ivy had climbed out of the car. Like Tory, she was small for her age, but her hair was blond instead of red, and her eyes were blue instead of green.

“That’s my daughter. She’s only four.” Desperate now, she could feel her heart throbbing softly inside her ribs. “We need a place, Mr. Cain. I’ll work hard. I’ll do whatever you need done. Just give me a chance.”

He swore the f-word under his breath, not loud enough for Ivy to hear. Damon wouldn’t have cared. She clung to the hope that represented.

“What do you plan to do with your daughter while you’re working? You can’t leave her in the house alone.”

Tory glanced wildly around. She had known this would be a problem. Before, she’d had money enough to hire a sitter or there was day care for employees’ kids.

She looked at the fenced yard off to the side in front of the trailer. The grass was sparse and in need of a trim. Maybe he’d had a dog or something, but it was clean and empty now. The weather was still good and there was a little gazebo with a table and benches in the middle. She’d be able to keep an eye on Ivy while she was working.

“She could play in the yard. She likes to color, and she already reads kids’ books. She wouldn’t be any trouble. If this works out, I’ll have money to pay for a sitter.”

Cain looked at Ivy, paced away then back. “Dammit.”

“It’s just three days. If I do a good job, you won’t have to search for someone else.”

He ran a hand over his short brown hair, paced away, then walked back. “Did you sleep in your car last night?”

She refused to answer. She didn’t want charity from Cain for anyone else.

“Fine,” he said. “You’ve got three days. But I’m not cutting you any slack. You do a man’s job for a man’s pay. If you can’t hack it, you’re out of here.”

And from the look on his face, he was clearly hoping she would fail. Hell, maybe she would.

She managed to fake a smile. “Okay, it’s a deal.” She stuck out her hand to seal the bargain, for a moment didn’t think he was going to shake. Then he sighed and took hold of her hand, not too hard, just firm enough to let her know he was in charge.

“You start tomorrow morning. Six A.M. sharp. There’s enough food in the trailer to last a few days. I’ll bring you a quart of milk. After that, board’s on you. If you’re still here, you’ll need to make a trip into town for groceries.”

Relief filtered through her, so strong it made her head swim. She had a place to stay where no one would look for her. She had a job, which meant food and whatever necessities they needed. If he kept her on, she’d find a sitter to watch Ivy. She’d have time to figure things out, make a new plan.

She took a step back, set an arm around her little girl’s shoulders and drew her forward. “This is my daughter, Ivy. Ivy, this is Mr. Cain.”

“Hello, Ivy,” he said. He had an unusual voice, deep and resonate, but at the same time soft and oddly compelling.

Ivy shrunk back.

“Say hello, honey,” Tory said.

“I don’t want to stay. I want to go.” Clinging to Tory’s waist, she burrowed into her.

“She’s shy,” Tory said.

“The trailer’s unlocked,” Cain said. “It’s clean and ready to go.”

“Thank you.”

He turned and started striding back to the barn. She probably should be at least a little afraid of him. 

Oddly, she wasn’t.

Then again, she hadn’t been afraid of Damon, either

New York Times bestselling author Kat Martin is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara where she majored in Anthropology and also studied History. Currently residing in Missoula, Montana with her Western-author husband, L. J. Martin, Kat has written sixty-five Historical and Contemporary Romantic Suspense novels. More than sixteen million copies of her books are in print and she has been published in twenty foreign countries. Kat is currently at work on her next Romantic Suspense.
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MAY 11-20, 2018

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