Hi, everybody. It's hard to concentrate today. My country is burning and I'm feeling sad. But here's a peek at The Cowboy's Secret Baby, my July Heartwarming release, which I hope will lift your spirits too. This is the latest in my Kansas Cowboys series.
What's this new book about? This is the back blurb:
Single mom Elizabeth Barnes has reason to avoid her rodeo star neighbor. She needs to protect her family after her ex's public scandal, and charismatic Dallas Maguire is only passing through. Turning to him for comfort was a onetime lapse--with unexpected consequences! Though Elizabeth can't keep hiding the truth--or her feelings--can a bachelor cowboy transform into a family man?
In this edited excerpt, Dallas has enlisted Elizabeth's help with a local rodeo he's putting on while he's in town for the summer, but their business-only agreement has begun to change:
“I know your situation’s way different from mine—”
Her voice took on a husky tone. “You’re a good guy, Dallas.” She sighed. “If I wasn’t the newly divorced mother of three rambunctious kids, things might bedifferent.” That was the most encouraging thing she’d ever said to him.
“Even if you are, Lizzie, things can change.”
She smiled. “And if you keep calling me Lizzie, I just might get used to it.”
He shouldn’t say this either but, “Maybe you’ve been Elizabeth--all buttoned up--long enough. Not my decision to make, though.” But he had to be honest with her. “I’m still planning to ride out of town. Back to the rodeo circuit.”
“And I’m staying here.” Their gazes held, and his pulse did another dance. God, she was pretty, even this way with her hair a mess, her eyes teary…But it wasn’t only how she looked that drew him. He’d meant what he said. He liked the person she was inside, even that starchy part. Maybe especially that side of her. “Dallas…” she said.
He wrapped his arms around her, rested his forehead against hers for another moment and inhaled her sweetness before he drew back to gauge her expression. Still dewy, still…warm. And he ignored the voice within that told him to back off. Dallas didn’t listen, and in that moment he didn’t care. Without planning what came next, he lowered his head, his lips met hers and he was lost. He didn’t just like Lizzie Barnes, and from the way she’d looked at him, he wondered if she felt the same way. Which could be bad news for both of them.
Gradually, he ended the kiss. “What are we going to do about this?” he asked.
Easing from his embrace, Lizzie gave him a sad smile. “I guess we stop right where we are.” She added, “And remember we’re not alone. Seth’s a sleepwalker, and Stella is my self-appointed protector. I’m not a free agent, Dallas. So,” she said. “About that charity we need to talk about for your rodeo…”
Dallas didn’t hear another word she said.
He no longer wanted to simply spend time with her this summer, to be friends or business partners as well as neighbors until he had to leave. In spite of his promise to himself that he’d avoid any serious relationship for now, and his vow never to hurt her, he already wanted something more.
I hope you've enjoyed this preview of The Cowboy's Secret Baby. Here's hoping for better days ahead.
Pray for America.