Monday, October 12, 2015

Martin Ranch Series Cover Reveals (Yes, more than one) and an Excerpt

Hello, everyone. 

One of the things I wanted when I started working on the Martin Ranch Series was a cohesiveness to the cover style. As a result, ALL the covers for this series have already been designed. 

All the cover photos (except for Cruel Serendipity) were taken by Shauna Kruse from Kruse Images & Photography. She's taken some amazing photos that were perfect for these covers.

And then my incredibly talented cover designer, Amanda Matthews from AM Design Studios created the gorgeous covers. 

I couldn't be more pleased with the results. 

Do you want to see a peek? 
Right By Your Side...Book #1: Scott & Skye
Cover Model: Tyler White

This book is AVAILABLE NOW!

How about an excerpt from Right By Your Side to give you a feeling about the Martin brothers dynamic first...

Scott awoke the next morning when Andrew nudged his side and held a cup of coffee toward him.
“Rough night?” Andrew asked. His older brother had a concerned expression on his tired eyes under the brim of his ever-present cowboy hat. Hell, he looked as exhausted as Scott felt.
“You have no idea.” Scott rubbed a hand over his tired face and crawled out of the sleeping bag to stand. “We have to talk. But first, let me check to be sure our little brother is still alive.”
Andrew’s eyes widened as he glanced into the room behind Scott. “Fuck.” Andrew wrinkled his nose. “Tell me that smell isn’t coming from him.”
“Yep, pretty much.” Scott sighed heavily. Shit, he didn’t want to deal with this to start off the day. “Come on.” He grabbed up the same bucket that he’d used the night before, and filled it up with water, and shoved it at Andrew. “You want to do the honors this time?”
Andrew raised an eyebrow. “Does that mean you got to do it last night?”
“Yep, I walked in and found our little brother passed out on a mix of alcohol and drugs while a couple of his buddies were gang-banging a teenager.”
Andrew’s expression hardened. “Tell me she was legal,” he growled.
“For the sex, yes. For the booze, no. She was eighteen by mere hours and I’m pretty sure Matt sampled her, too, before he was too wasted to get himself out of his own puke.”
Andrew ground his teeth before asking, “And the drugs?”
“Scripts.” Scott dug in his pocket and dangled the baggie in front of Andrew. “We need to find out where they came from. It would probably be a good idea to check Dad’s bottles, too.”
“Do you really think he’s so far-gone that he’s stealing from Dad now?”
“I don’t know, A. He’s hurting.” In all honesty, they all were, and none of them were handling the shock of Thomas’s death particularly well. “But the way he’s headed, he’s going to end up in prison or dead, and I don’t want to stand by and watch it happen to another brother. I can’t stand by and watch that happen again. And that would flat-out kill Dad.”
A groan echoed from the other room. Matthew lifted up onto his hands and knees to glare at them where they stood in the doorway. Then he grimaced at the mess underneath him. “You drama queens need to mind your own fucking business,” he growled. “It was just a little party. No big deal.”
As Matthew stumbled to stand, he swiped some of the grime off his skin.
Anger bubbled inside Scott’s chest. He clenched his hands into hard fists, although he wasn’t sure if he wanted to deck the kid or pull him into a hug. There were too many years where he’d taken care of Matthew as a little boy when he was sick and just wanted their dead mother for comfort. That part of him—who was used to taking care of Matthew—wanted to go help him when he could see how rotten Matthew felt.
With a slight shake of his head, Andrew put a restraining hand on Scott’s arm as if he understood the pull Scott felt. And the odds were he did. They’d stepped in and taken over care of both Thomas and Matthew when the world blew apart for all the Martin boys. Scott and Andrew had just been teenagers when their mom suddenly died in a tragic car accident, but the two youngest were only eight and five…too young to truly understand why mom wasn’t there anymore and why Dad suddenly spent all hours of the day drunk off his ass.
“And how’s that working for you this morning, sport?” Andrew asked. “Does your head hurt? Your mouth taste good? I bet you smell real nice, don’t you? I know you seem just like a bundle of fresh flowers from over here, and I’m at least fifteen feet away. Is this really what you dreamed for in your life?”
“Fuck you.” Matthew began to peel off his soiled clothes. “I don’t have to answer to you.” He threw his jeans and T-shirt into the trashcan and began to shove his feet back into his boots.
Andrew took five menacing steps over to their little brother and got right up in his face. “You damn well have to answer to me when you’re doing illegal drugs in Dad’s barn and bringing underage kids in here and providing them with alcohol and God knows what else. Or did you forget that I can toss your sorry ass in jail faster than you can lift your little pinkie?”
Andrew could be an intimidating badass motherfucker when he wanted to be, since in his other job he was a Texas Ranger. At six-foot-two inches, he had Matthew on height and about forty pounds…and all that extra weight was pure muscle.
Matthew laughed bitterly before giving Andrew a scorn-filled smirk. “Yeah, but throwing me in jail really would kill Dad, wouldn’t it? And I know you would never do anything to hurt Saint Michael, so cut the bullshit. I’m going to go shower and go to bed. You two girls don’t have too much fun.” He stopped and tilted his head at them, his expression filled with derision. “Oh yeah, never mind. That won’t ever happen. I forgot who I was talking to, didn’t I?”
He strode off out the barn and across the yard like it was a perfectly natural thing to walk around in only his cowboy boots and his underwear.
“The bad thing is…” Andrew said in a dark, low voice. “He’s fucking right. I wouldn’t ever be able to arrest him, but he’s filled with that same bitterness that Thomas was. He simply wears it more out in the open than Tom did, but I don’t think that’s necessarily better. What are we going to do?” Andrew’s devastation echoed Scott’s own. They couldn’t let Matthew continue on this self-destructive path.
“I don’t know,” Scott said. “We could check him into a rehab clinic, but unless he wants it, it’s just a temporary fix and that would likely make him more resentful than he is now, although that’s hard to imagine. How’s Dad doing? Has he noticed Matthew’s behavior yet?”
“No,” Andrew leaned up against a horse stall, pulling off his hat to rub a hand through his auburn hair that needed a haircut. “Dad’s too caught up in his own depression. I think we could set the ranch on fire and he wouldn’t ever notice until his shirt caught on fire.”
“He’s not drinking again, is he?”
As a recovering alcoholic that was always a concern for their father. He’d gone on a two year bender after their mom suddenly died, leaving them all to fend for themselves. He’d managed to avoid the alcohol so far with Thomas’s death, but that didn’t mean he was dealing with Thomas’s murder any better than he had their mother’s car accident.
“I don’t think so,” Andrew said slowly. “But he’s not looking good. I want you to watch him and maybe convince him to go see his doctor.”
“Okay, I can do that, but it will have to be tonight. I need to head back into Lubbock. I don’t know if you heard about the tour bus crash last night?” As one of the Lubbock area Texas Rangers, Andrew kept plugged into the police dispatch radio, even when off-duty.
Andrew nodded. “Did you get caught up in that?”
“Yeah, one fatality, and two others were taken to the hospital. I was the first one on the scene and promised one of the victims that I’d come check on them this morning.”
Andrew raised both eyebrows at that. “Hmm, that doesn’t sound like you.”
A little uncomfortable with the possibility that his brother would realize the difference this time was a celebrity crush, he brushed it off. “She was reluctant to get into the ambulance without me since I’d taken care of her at the crash site. I told her I’d come in this morning simply to make it easier for the paramedic crew. Plus, I want to see how her boyfriend fared. He had some bad burns.” He ignored Andrew’s expression of disbelief. “I’ll be back later this afternoon or this evening. I have four days off so I can help out some and we’ll figure out what to do about Dad and Matthew.”
 “Four days.” Andrew blew out a breath. “Okay, but honestly you look like crap. Why don’t you stay in Lubbock tonight and get some sleep. Then you can wade back into the stress here tomorrow?”
“And when do you ever get to wade out of it, A?”
“I go to work every once in a while.” He gave a self-deprecating smile. His job with the Texas Rangers was far from stress-free. “I’m fine. We have to get our family on steady ground again, and then I’ll go on a long vacation.”
And there it was…the guilt. Instead of stepping up like Andrew, Scott had buried himself deeper into his job and further away from his family and the emotional quicksand they offered. He vowed to do better…for all of them. His family needed him. He needed to man-up and be there more.


And now here are the rest of the covers for this series...

Finding You in the Crazy...Book #2: Matthew & Ainslee
Cover Model: Collin Gray

In the main series (i.e. the books that feature the Martin family), Matthew's book will be next. Matthew has some issues that he's working through when he meets feisty veterinarian, Ainslee. He learns he has to get his shit together quick, because she's not going to put up with it. She's a good match for him in so many ways. 

Trust Me to Hold You...Book #3: Jasper and McKenna
Cover Models: Aurora O'Brien and Lance Jones

Searching For Indiscretion...Book #4: Andrew and Emily
Cover Model: Adam Clark

That's the main series...the books that will be centered around the Martin Ranch, but there is another book that will be coming out NEXT that is part of the same world. KC and Josh were introduced in Right By Your Side and they have their own romantic suspense adventure going on. It's partly written and I'm loving these two even more than when they were introduced. 

This will be the next book to actually be released in early, 2016...

Cruel Serendipity...Book #1.5: Josh and KC
Photo source: stock photography

Cruel Serendipity Story Description:

Two men.
One bad drug.
A painful history neither can let go.

The chemistry between Josh Yates and KC Morelli was instant. Fate's timing, on the other hand, never gave them a chance.

As a former bodyguard, KC had always been the strong alpha-type—until a tour bus accident changed his life. Now he's merely a disfigured college student, and not good relationship material for Josh.

Fruit Candy is an evil new drug on the streets of Lubbock, used as a weapon against gay men. As a detective, this isn’t Josh’s case. As an architecture student, KC certainly has no business getting involved.

But fate has other ideas. When Josh is left incapacitated and vulnerable, KC saves him, leaving Josh with what he's wanted for months—yet no memory of it. With firsthand knowledge of how destructive Fruit Candy is, they must work together to stop it from hurting anyone else.

The distributor of the drug isn’t going to sit back and let them destroy all he’s built, though. Even if Josh and KC succeed in their goal, will there be enough left of either of them to find a way into their future? 

if you'd like to add it to your TBR pile.

What do you think? Do you like them? If you'd like a copy of the Martin Ranch bookmark, sign up for my mailing list with your snail mail address (over in the right hand column on my website>>>). Those of you that have already done so, I hope you liked getting a sneak peek of these covers before everyone else.

Friday, October 9, 2015

First Line Friday: Found At the Library

First Line Friday

The idea is we'll all share 
(unedited) snippets from one of our 
current Works In Progress or a previous release. 
Sometimes it will be the first line. 
Sometimes it will be a little excerpt. 
It will depend on what's inspiring me Thursday night. ;)

Today, I'm sharing the first few lines of my upcoming release, Found At the Library. 
In this book, each chapter starts out with an observation from one of the guys...either Tommy, the artist, or Mac, the author. This is one of my favorites...

The first lines from Chapter 4 of the book.

It's releasing October 23rd and here are the preorder links...

Found at the Library Story Description:

His entire life, Tommy Garrett has dealt with self-doubts. He thought he’d conquered the majority of them until a chance meeting with an author brought his illiteracy to the forefront...again. Growing up with un-diagnosed dyslexia has left Tommy barely able to read, but books are his Nirvana. Now he spends his life creating art dedicated to the love of those “untouchable” items.

Robert McIntyre, Mac, is a best-selling, highly celebrated author. But his point of view has become a little bit too narrow...until Tommy opens his eyes. That chance meeting has changed everything about his world. He has no idea how to find the beautiful man he met, and offended, at the library book sale. But when he does, Tommy’s life is in crisis-mode. It’s the holidays and Mac can’t just standby when Tommy needs help, whether Tommy wants it or not. 

Two artistic men. One shared passion for books.

Life is hard, and sometimes when conflict arises you have to write your own plot twist to pull yourself out of the fray.


After you check mine out, 
go see what Kelly is up to...