|Brendan and Deirdre foreground with |
Possum Kingdom Lake in background and
the cliff beneath which Brendan fished
when Deirdre landed beside his boat.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
NO STRINGS ATTACHED!
For several years now I’ve participated in (iamareadernotawriter) Inspired Kathy’s blog hops, blasts, and tours as well as those of other tour hosts. I’ve discovered many quality books and interesting authors. Occasionally, as in this post, Kathy organizes a NO STRINGS ATTACHED BLOG HOP. That’s right, no strings. You do not have to go here, there, and everywhere and no salesman will call.
NO STRINGS ATTACHED means all you have to do to be entered to win my drawing is to provide your email address. You don’t even have to comment unless you’re in the mood. See, really no strings.
My book featured on this NO STRINGS ATTACHED post is my romantic suspense/time travel OUT OF THE BLUE. I love reading romantic suspense. This is the only time travel I’ve published, but I have others in the works. The chance to combine the two was too good to resist. In fact, this is my husband Hero’s favorite of my books. I thoroughly enjoyed writing this book, but I fell down on choosing the cover.
Friends tell me the cover is blah and uninviting. After attending a recent conference at which covers were discussed, I have to agree this one is the pits. The story is good, so this cover must be replaced as soon as possible. In the meantime, I have print copies on hand with the old cover. So, I'm giving away FIVE print copies to people who enter this blog hop.
Briefly, here’s the story of OUT OF THE BLUE:
Brendan Hunter is a police detective in (fictitious) Radford Springs in North Central Texas. While he and his best friend partner were out one night, they were victims of a shooting which killed the friend and seriously injured Brendan. The story opens with Brendan staying at his mom’s home on Possum Kingdom Lake (a real place) while he recovers. The official opinion of the shooting is a drive-by, but Brendan doesn’t believe that report. He’s determined to discover who set up him and his partner.
Deirdre Dougherty is an herbal healer gifted—or cursed—with visions and clairvoyance. When an angry mob sets fire to her cottage, she runs until her only avenue of escape is the ocean. She leaps into the Atlantic, but lands in present day Possum Kingdom Lake beside Brendan’s bass boat. How can she explain the way she came to be there when she doesn’t believe it herself? At least Brendan’s mom Blossom believes her. Blossom even lets Deirdre help out in the health food store. Isn't it great they're both basically in the same business--herbs and healing?
Brendan believes Deirdre is either crazy or in league with the killer and he is determined to learn which. He intends to keep her under surveillance while he looks for his friend’s murderer. But both Brendan and Deirdre are needed to uncover the clues and save their lives when the villain ups his attacks.
Here’s the blah cover, but don’t let that fool you. It really is a good story, modestly said, of course. ☺
And here’s an excerpt from OUT OF THE BLUE on a day Deirdre is helping Blossom at the health food store in Radford Springs:
Blossom gave Deirdre the mail. “Do you mind, dear? I hate going out in this sticky heat. It frizzes my perm, but it seems to have no effect on your gorgeous, thick hair.”
"I’ll post these and be back in a minute to straighten the front display of that new organic salsa from Austin.” Deirdre carried the letters outside and dropped them into the box on the corner across the parking lot. She turned to start back.
A huge black car apparently had been parked at the back of the lot by the Dumpster and pulled alongside her. She saw the dented fender before the door opened. Then she realized the two scary guys from the bar were inside, partially obscured from view by the tinted windows. The blond stepped out and reached for her.
She understood his intent so she screamed for help and ran away from him. People came to the store window.
Polly rushed to the door. “Blossom’s calling the police. Hold on, Deirdre, we’re coming.”
But no one rushed to her aid. What could a few ladies do against these two frightening men? She’d have to save herself, so she screamed again.
The blond caught up with her and grabbed her arm. “No use screaming, lady. You’re coming with us.” He dragged her toward the car.
She kicked him and screamed again, clawing at him with her free hand. She drew blood along his arm and scratched his face.
He jerked her and grabbed both her hands. “You’re gonna be sorry you made me mad. I have lots of ways to get even.” He told her what he planned as he yanked her toward the car’s back seat.
Strong as an ox, the man held her in an iron grasp so her feet barely touched the ground. He heaved her toward the open door. Suspended above the ground, she braced a foot against the car’s body. With her other, she kicked him between the legs, just as Ma had taught her.
He turned red and released her as he doubled over and dropped to his knees. Without him supporting her, she hit the pavement hard. Her back took the force of her fall and the air whooshed from her. She couldn’t stand but she rolled away.
The driver pointed a gun at her. “Get in or you die right here, right now.”
What had Brendan said about this situation when they watched television? Never get in the car with anyone. But how could she resist without him shooting her? She recalled the blonde’s threats. If she had to die, she’d rather it be here quickly than at the hands of these two later. She made the sign of the cross and prepared herself for death.
A horn honked and tires squealed. Brendan yelled. “Deirdre, I’m coming.”
Blossom and Polly hurried toward her, each carrying a broom and wielding it as if they intended to beat on the blond man. Several associates came with them and lobbed jars of something at the car. In the heat, the jars exploded like small bombs. After one loud crack, red oozed along the spider-webbed glass windshield.
“What the . . .?” The scary man in black turned back toward the steering wheel. “Rod, with or without her, get in here.”
She struggled to her knees then stood, backing away.
Apparently unable to straighten, the guy she’d kicked hoisted himself back into the car. He yelled, “I’ll get you for this. When I do, you’re gonna beg me to kill you before I’m through.”
The black car took off with a squeal from smoking tires, dripping red salsa and leaving glass shards in its wake. The driver had his head stuck halfway out the side window, his front windshield obviously too damaged and dirty for the wipers to clear. Aromas from the salsa’s spicy contents filled the air—cilantro, tomatoes, chili peppers. Deirdre fell in love with those scents.
Then Brendan was there, lifting her and carrying her to his car. He cradled her in his lap with the door open.
Blossom followed them and stood beside the car. “I called the police. We couldn’t think of any weapons but brooms and one-pound jars of salsa. Pretty feeble.”
Polly hovered behind Blossom. The other associates had gone back to their duties. A dozen customers and people from nearby stores stood near the building in the shade of the overhang, talking to one another or staring.
“You were brave and clever,” Deirdre assured Blossom and Polly then looked up at Brendan. “But they’d have been unable to stop the men if you hadn’t come.”
He smiled. “It looks like you had them on the run, Mom. Salsa was a clever touch. Didn’t help the parking lot, though.”
Polly said, “Oh, those horrid men, at least they’re gone. We’ll use the brooms to get rid of the glass and hope for rain. Otherwise, maybe we can talk the fire department into hooking up a hose and spraying the lot for us.”
Deirdre nestled her head near Brendan’s ear. “The scary guy with the black hair had a gun. A broom and jars of tomato salsa are not much against a bullet. He could have killed everyone.”
I hope you are genuinely intrigued now and will want this book so much that if you don’t win, you’ll rush to buy it from Kindle, Nook, Kobo, iTunes, or Smashwords.
In the meantime, you know what to do to enter. No strings, remember?
Thanks for stopping by!