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Category Archives: Romantic Suspense


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***HURT is a Dark Romantic Thriller and contains multiple scenes of violence. It is not intended for sensitive audiences or readers under the age of eighteen.***

Award Winning Author, Lydia Michaels, enters the world of DARK ROMANCE with an unforgettably suspenseful psychological thriller!


Callan MacGregor might speak with the eloquence of a Scottish poet, but a hard life has turned him into a merciless killer. With a first-hand account of hell, he trusts nothing and no one but the hollow hurt tortured into his bones. Sacrificing all, he must escape Scotland to survive.

Emery Tanner is captivated—to the point of obsession—by the stunning Scotsman tending bar at the Imperial Hotel. With as many dark secrets as he has scars, she hungers to know every exquisite inch of him, but her shy nature leaves her tongue-tied. Despite her sense that innate kindness rests beneath his savage surface, Callan MacGregor is a man to approach with caution—if not fear.

When tragedy strikes and Emery’s world is shattered, she learns just how ruthless Callan can be. Violence has shaped his soul and love has always led to loss in both their broken lives. But as secrets are exposed, they find truth within the hurt and awaken a desire to become whole once more


Title: Hurt

Release Date: May 21, 2019

Genre: Psychological Thriller | Dark Romantic Thriller | Suspense

Tag Line: #ItsGoingtoHURT #HURT

Series: The Hurt Series (Book 1)

Pages: 518

Edition: 1st

Ebook ISBN: 978-0-9995236-2-9

Print ISBN: 978-0-9995236-3-6

Available: through all major retailers in print & eBook



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(*1k Word Count | PG-13 )


Callan’s teeth clacked with a horrid smack. Precise pain exploded behind his eyes as a fire bloomed under his stinging skin. His face caught the brunt of the assault, flesh splitting and bones throbbing with familiar distress. Thick blood mixed with sweat as rivulets poured down his face.

He spit onto the cement floor and waited for his vision to clear as the beast of a man pounding him like raw mince shuffled back to catch his breath. The buffeted sound of the crowd returned, their hungry cries surrounding the makeshift ring from all angles.

Callan’s throbbing ears siphoned the droning noise in and out to the rapid tempo of his heart. Womp—womp—womp—womp… His skin pulsed to the beat.

His head snapped back. Another blast to the skull. Blood gushed behind his nose, choking off his airway, drenching everything in the metallic flavor of defeat.

Tripping over his feet, he forced his knees to bend, rewarded by several knocks to the ribs. Voices collided in a drunken slur of bloodthirsty chants.

Launching forward, he dodged a fist and blasted a punch into the tender solar plexus of his assigned enemy. The blood-drenched tape over his knuckles did little to protect his hands, each crushing hit pulverizing his brittle bones and weakening his wrists. At this point, they swung like numb ham hocks.

Adrenaline thrummed through his veins. He bunched and bounced like a bobbin on a spool, tethered by a thread to the unknown outcome of the match, prepared for anything—even death.

Heart hammering like a bodhrán, he maneuvered closer, blinking through the opaque film of blood and sweat coating his eyes. No time to wipe it away. Even blinking cost him.

His head snapped back, jaw vibrating, as pain exploded in his ears. The sharp burst spiked through his brain, blowing open his sinuses, and drilling to the base of his spine—tripping him on thin air.

He spit again, never taking his eyes off his opponent.

The dank air mixed with the tang of whisky and desperation. Boarded windows kept the moonlight out and a stale scent of abandonment in.

Everyone in that deserted mill had something to lose. Or everything to gain. But no one had more riding on this than him.

No guarantees. Win, lose. Live, die. So long as the right people got paid, no one gave a **** who got hurt.

A hasty lunge and a miss—bad timing on his part. A solid fist to the ribs whacked the wind from his lungs. It was the only warning before a storm rained over him. His opponent pelted him with fists, caving in his chest and hemming him to the line.

While he’d always been a notably large man, his rival was ****ing huge.

They loved to do this, to cut off his oxygen, hoping he’d black out. If they couldnae get the knockout, they’d go for a collapse. But his ability to take a hit—the sort of hit that would drop an average man—had made him a legend.

Stumbling. Battered. Breathless. He let his rival—and the crowd—assume he was done. The roars of excitement echoed every hit as they fell in a flurry.

The enemy weakened with each blow, slowed with each swing. Callan gasped through it, wearing his opponent down as he gathered his strength like a tidal wave sucks into the ocean before letting go.

The abuse chiseled away the man until only an animal remained. And then…


Like a phoenix of rage, he rose from the ashes. Nimble, with unexpected agility, he drew back, wheezed in a breath of blood and hate, and hurtled forward, rushing his rival and lobbing his ravaged knuckles into his meaty face.

When a man had nothing to lose, he’d do anything to win. No longer shackled by strategy, Callan unleashed.

His skull throbbed with the beat of his pulse. The bastard tumbled into the crowd, tripping over his own feet, only to get hoisted back into the action.

Tasting victory, Callan bared his bloodstained teeth like the devil about to take his prize.

Something dark and inhuman shifted inside of him. Limitless. Unredeemable. Hungry. He cleaved into the enemy, throwing haymakers, ballistic and desperate. It’s him or me.

A blow cuffed his ear, delivering a stunning swirl of black behind his eyes as the roar muffled. Swarming figures blurred.

From the depths of his pain, buried beneath every ache and injustice, he scraped the filthy floor of his soul for every jagged piece of broken determination he could find. He unleashed everything.

“He’s done!”

“Knock him oot!”

Jumbled chaos scattered his thinking like sparks flying from a blowtorch.

“Finish him!”

A calm stole through him as his civility disintegrated, sinking into the dark abyss of his soul where he dinnae like to dwell. Barbaric determination took savage hold of his actions, demanding he finish this.

“MacGregor, destroy that scunner!”

His family needed this win. But they also needed him.

Gavin’s elfin face wavered in his mind, too gaunt for a boy of ten, but so hopeful. Innis’s beauty shined like a beacon, her ebony waves framing the delicate angles of her ivory face.

Incarnate hate for every suffered uncertainty spewed from him in a primal rage. The body beneath him slackened and stopped flinching.

“MacGregor, yer gonna murder him!”

The hushed shock of the crowd’s alarm penetrated his haze of savage fury, and his arms slowed. When nothing came at him, he staggered back, his heaving sides pumping like a bellow feeds wind to a flame, only the fire in his opponent’s eyes had died.

He swayed back, panting and confused, as the world took a moment to spin to a stop. The other man lay bloody and still. Callan’s panic and paranoia churned into a frenzy of doubt, waiting to see him breathe.

Balanced on the sharp prick of a needle’s edge, his existence teetered on his opponent’s breath. Though they were enemies in the ring, outside, they were the same.

Unlike the spectators, they came from nothing and would do anything to survive. But if that breath dinnae come, Callan would have to live with that sin for the rest of his life…


Readers can enjoy Lydia Michaels’s book soundtracks by following her on Spotify here:


Sound of Silence by Disturbed
Possession by Sarah McLachlan
Stay by Rhianna
Enter Sandman by Metallica
Uninvited by Alanis Morrisette
Quiet by MILCK
Bruises by Lewis Capaldi
Personal Jesus by Marilyn Manson
Psycho Killer by Talking Heads
I Know You Care by Ellie Goulding
Almost Lover by A Fine Frenzy
Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Ray
Nothing Compares 2 U by Chris Cornell
Rise Up by Andra Day
Love Reign O’er Me by The Who
May It Be by Enya
Shape of my Heart by Sting

About Lydia Michaels

Lydia Michaels is the award winning author of over 35 romance novels. She is an iBooks Bestsellers and her work has been featured in USA Today. She is the two-time winner of the Author of the Year Award from Happenings Media [2018 & 2019]. In 2015 she won The Best Author Award from The Courier Times. She is a five time nominee for the prestigious RONE Award. Her books are intellectual, emotional, haunting, always centered around love.

Lydia Michaels loves to hear from readers! She can be contacted by email at




Twitter: @Lydia_Michaels  |


Lydia Michaels Website



Giveaway runs May 21 – June 4

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Release Blitz: The Assistant by Marni Mann

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The Assistant, a haunting new romantic thriller from USA Today bestselling author Marni Mann is LIVE!

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At forty-two, I’m married to my best friend, and we have two beautiful children.

Everything about my life is perfect until my father gets sick.

Before: I owned and operated a massively successful women’s shapewear company.

After: I stay home with my family because I’ve learned the importance of time.

Before: My husband could rely on me to take care of everything.

After: I hire him the perfect assistant.

My entire life can be summed up in before and afters, but something happens in the middle.

A meeting.

And it changes the course of everyone’s lives forever.

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About Marni:

Best-selling Author Marni Mann knew she was going to be a writer since middle school. While other girls her age were daydreaming about teenage pop stars, Mann was fantasizing about penning her first novel. She crafts sexy, titillating stories that weave together her love of darkness, mystery, passion, and human emotion. A New Englander at heart, she now lives in Sarasota, Florida with her husband and their two dogs who subsequently have been characters in her books. When she’s not nose deep in her laptop working on her next novel, she’s scouring for chocolate, sipping wine, traveling to new locations, and devouring fabulous books.

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Review: Cliff’s Edge by Meg Tilly

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Meg Tilly returns with a second gripping romantic suspense novel set on the idyllic Solace Island in the Pacific Northwest.

Eve Harris is all set to house-sit and run the bakery she shares with her sister while Maggie goes on her honeymoon, but there’s one problem–the house is already occupied. By a movie star. He claims to be her brother-in-law’s friend, and not only does he insist on staying, he also offers to help. Playing house has never been so tempting…

Rhys Thomas is looking for a place to lie low after wrapping up his latest film, so when Luke offers up his house as a safe haven, Rhys sees the perfect opportunity for a little R & R. But rest is the last thing on his mind as he and Eve grow close.

But Eve and Rhys are not as alone as they think. And as danger trails Eve, it will take everything Rhys has to save the woman he loves.


“Her life was about to change. She just didn’t know it yet.”

Cliff’s Edge is my first book by this author and won’t be my last.

Told from multiple points of view, Cliff’s Edge follows the story of Eve and Rhys. When Eve’s sister goes on her honeymoon, she finds herself house-sitting. Only when she arrives, she finds the house is already occupied by non other than Rhys Thomas. Not only is he a movie, but he’s also friends with Eve’s brother-in-law. He’s looking for a place to unwind and get away from it all. And he’s not about to let Eve’s presence stop him from getting the sanctuary he so desperately is looking for. The time Rhys and Eve spend together, the closer they become. Little do they know that their entire worlds are about to be turned upside down….

Overall, I thought this was a really good read. I loved the idea of the story and I was certainly sucked into it. I enjoyed getting to know the characters and loved seeing them all interact. I thought this story was paced well and I enjoyed not only the romance, but the suspense element. I really liked getting the villains point of view and the suspense kept me glued to the pages. While this is the second book in the Solace Island Series, it can totally be read and enjoyed as a stand-alone novel.

As I previously stated, this is my first book by this author and I look forward to checking out more from her in the future.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book via the publisher & NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review*

Feature: The Dark Bones by Loreth Ann White

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Title: The Dark Bones
Author: Loreth Anne White
Release Date: May 21, 2019
Publisher: Montlake Romance
When Detective Rebecca North left her rural hometown, she vowed never to return. Her father’s apparent suicide has changed that. The official report is that retired cop Noah North shot himself, knocked over a lantern, and set his isolated cabin ablaze. But Rebecca cannot believe he killed himself.
To prove it, she needs the help of Ash Haugen, the man she left behind. But Rebecca and Ash share more than broken hearts. Something darker lies between them, and the investigation is stirring it back to life. Clues lead them to the home of Olivia West and her deeply troubled twelve-year-old daughter, Tori. The child knows more about the murder than anyone can imagine, but she’s too terrified to say a word.
And as a cold-blooded killer resurfaces from the past, Rebecca and Ash begin to fear that their own secrets may be even harder to survive.
Hunting For Betrayal with Author Loreth Anne White
My newest novel, THE DARK BONES, is about a cop, Rebecca North, who learns that her father—a retired police officer—has killed himself. She can’t believe it. But in order to prove it was murder she must return to her small, rural home town and face a lot of dark things she’s been running from including the man she left behind long ago, and a cold case thought long buried.
At the core, THE DARK BONES examines the lies people tell each other and themselves—the false narratives they construct in order to hide mistakes, or bad deeds, or hurtful truths, or realities that shame and burden them. And as Rebecca North, my detective, digs deep to find the truth of what really happened to her dad, she begins to crack open a carapace of old lies that wraps around a cold case—a  heinous deed that occurred in her small community twenty years in the past, a crime from which people are still hiding.
Rebecca fast learns that the secrets she is beginning to unearth are secrets people will still kill to keep. However, opening up this vault of lies and betrayals in the small town also reveals to Rebecca truths about herself, and about the man she once loved, Ash Haugen. A man who betrayed her. And in confronting those betrayals and old lies, and the reasons that underpinned them, Rebecca and Ash can finally heal, and open themselves to a love that was always meant to be. At the heart THE DARK BONES is also about second chances, and getting that opportunity to try and set right the collateral damages around betrayal.
Although THE DARK BONES stands alone, it also revisits the setting and some of the characters from an earlier book, A DARK LURE. Those earlier characters were left with a hard road to travel toward their happy end, and as some of them play a key role
in Rebecca and Ash’s story, we see them also confronting outfalls around betrayal, and getting chance to continue their journey towards a good life.
The Dark Bones Excerpt

Rebecca felt warmth. She was enveloped by it. She heard the crackle and pop of dry logs burning and, in the distance, dogs barking. The smell of … fire—

Her eyes shot open, her heart thumping.

He sat there. Ash. In a chair by the fire, watching her with his ice-blue eyes. She was in his living room, and the lighting had been dimmed. The flickering glow of the flames in the hearth behind him cast his rugged features into sharp relief. The scar down the side of his face looked harsh. An old brown dog with a white muzzle slept on a rug in front of the hearth.

Rebecca’s brain slotted puzzle pieces into place as she struggled through a mental haze to backtrack and figure out how she’d gotten here: The lights following her. The razed cabin and the clues that someone had been inside the shed and maybe fled the scene. Ash shooting at her. No gas in her truck. Fear of dying. Coming here to Haugen Ranch. Shucking her dad’s gear in Ash’s mudroom. Him helping her into the living room of his old family home—a great big log house built by his grandfather. Seating her on the sofa.

She sat up slowly, trying to pull her brain into sharper focus. A down duvet was wrapped around her, a heated blanket beneath that. The duvet smelled of fresh laundry. Yes, she recalled, the fire had already been going in the hearth when he’d brought her in—she’d noticed that. Next had come hot tea with honey, warm clothes handed to her—fleece, oversize. More tea.

He’d told her not to talk. Discussion could wait.

She met his eyes now and felt a visceral connection across the darkened room. This was her first proper look at him after all these years.

Her teen lover had aged. As she had. But he’d matured in a way she found attractive. He was neither sweet nor handsome. Rugged rather. A brooding look. Sun bronzed and weathered. Her attention returned to his scar. So prominent, cutting down the left side of his face from eye to jaw. He could have had plastic surgery over the past decades, but clearly hadn’t. Her memory slipped back to the day she’d tried to patch him up with the help of a small medical kit and knowledge she’d gleaned during her part-time job as a veterinary assistant.

He lied…

Her attention shifted to his hands. His knuckles were scarred.

What were you protecting him from that day?

She recalled the blood she’d seen on those ragged and bruised knuckles that day. Why had she not told her father she didn’t know for certain he’d fallen off his horse and been dragged across sharp terrain?

Why had she not questioned more firmly, at age sixteen, Ash’s refusal to go to the ER facility on that particular day? What deep psychology had driven her to possibly blind herself to search for a darker truth?

In that tempestuous, hormone-filled year she was sixteen, had she conveniently compartmentalized something that had created cognitive dissonance, because she’d just recently started sleeping with Ash, and needed to believe him? Needed to trust him again?

How had her actions that day shaped this present? Could it—she—have possibly played a role in her father’s death?

And why, oh dear God why, did Ash still make her feel things? This—this—was why she’d stayed away. He held an animal kind of magnetism over her. She felt it now, her gaze locked with his arctic eyes. Her attraction had blinded her to the fact he was not good for her. He was a liar.

She cleared her throat. “What time is it?”

“Almost midnight. You going to be okay? Do I need to drive you to Clinton?”

From his ranch it would take almost an hour, in the dark, on bad roads. And the ER would be closed. They’d have to call 911 for emergency to open up with an on-call physician. It reminded Rebecca that out here, one looked after one’s own.

“I … I must have passed out.”

A half smile. “Slept like a baby. You must have been tired.”

A desire to tell him all rose in Rebecca: How rough her journey home had been with the storms. How seeing her father’s body had gutted her. How exhausted she felt, emotionally. But she held back as her mind sharpened and the immediacy of why she was here, with him, in this house, was pulled into clear focus.

“What made you return to my father’s place when you did, Ash? How did you come to find me?”

“I go up to the Broken Bar mesa sometimes. The view of the valley on a clear, cold night is surreal.” A pause. “I needed to think.” After seeing you. The unspoken words seemed to simmer between them. “Someplace above it all. Then as the moon rose, I caught light glinting off metal where your father’s place was. I thought it might be a vehicle, so I went to check before heading home.” He paused. “You could have died out there.”

Rebecca swallowed as this fact sank like a stone through her gut.

“Have you been sitting there watching me like that all night?”

“You worried me,” he said. Then, very quietly, he added, “And I like to look at you.” He paused. “It’s been so long.”

Author Biography
Loreth Anne White is an internationally bestselling author of thrillers, mysteries, and romantic suspense. A three-time RITA finalist, she is also the 2017 Overall Daphne du Maurier Award winner, and she has won the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Romantic Crown for Best Romantic Suspense and Best Book Overall, in addition to being a Booksellers’ Best finalist and a multiple CataRomance Reviewers’ Choice Award winner. A former journalist and newspaper editor who has worked in both South Africa and Canada, she now resides in the Pacific Northwest with her family. Visit her at
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Review: A Perfect Lie by Lisa Renee Jones

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They say that you are not a product of the environment that you’ve grown up in, that you create your own story, tell it your way. That you get to pick your own future. They lied. If you’re honest with yourself, you believed that lie, too, like I used to, because I wanted to, and even needed to believe that I had some semblance of control over my own self. The truth is that control is part of the lie. The ability to become a person of our own making is the perfect lie. I concede that it might appear that some people control their destiny, but I assure you, if you gave me fifteen minutes, I could pull apart that façade. We are born into a destiny that we never have the chance to escape. That’s why I must tell my story. For those of you out there like me who were told that you have choices, when you never had one single choice that was your own. For those of you out there who were, who are, judged for decisions you’ve made that were directed by your destiny, not by the façade of choices. The irony of the story within this story is how one person’s predisposed destiny can impact, influence, and even change the lives of those around him or her. How one destiny ties to another destiny.

I am Hailey Anne Monroe. I’m twenty-eight years old. An artist, who found her muse on the canvas because I wasn’t allowed to have friends or even keep a journal. And yes, if you haven’t guessed by now, I’m that Hailey Anne Monroe, daughter to Thomas Frank Monroe, the man who was a half-percentage point from becoming President of the United States. If you were able to ask him, he’d probably tell you that I was the half point. But you can’t ask him, and he can’t tell you. He’s dead. They’re all dead and now I can speak.

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“Bad memories take up good time that should have been shared.”

From the moment I picked up this book, I was instantly swept up in the web of A Perfect Lie. I was totally intriuged by Hailey’s story was desperate to find some answers. I had no idea what was really going on with her; only that I had to know more. The deeper I fell into Hailey’s story the more lost I was. Just as I thought I was putting the puzzle together, the rug would once again be pulled out from me.

A Perfect Lie is filled with mystery and suspense. There is danger and intrigue around every corner. I never knew who I could trust and who I couldn’t. Everyone played their part exceedingly well and they certainly kept me on my toes. At times, I felt like I was Alice going down the rabbit hole. Nothing and no one was as it seems. Who was real and who wasn’t? Who’s agenda could you trust? I had so many questions and was dying to discover the answers. A Perfect Lie kept me on my toes and begging for more. I couldn’t put this book down. I loved trying to solve the riddle of Hailey’s story and couldn’t have been more thrilled with how this story played out.

*I won an advanced copy of this book. This is my honest review*

Cover Reveal: Jersey Six by Jewel E. Ann

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There’s nothing more intimate than revenge.

Jersey Six, an all-new mind-bending, romantic suspense from Jewel E. Ann, is coming June 13th and we have the sexy cover!


A hit-and-run accident leaves Jersey Six orphaned and homeless on the streets of Newark, shattering her dreams of school dances, pink nail polish, and a diploma.

Eight years later, a burn victim with amnesia wanders into Jersey’s barely-existent life. She resists his efforts to form a friendship until he reveals knowledge of the person responsible for derailing her future. Through their unusual friendship, she discovers a way to avenge the deaths of her foster parents.

All she has to do is destroy the world’s biggest rock star.

In the ultimate game of sex, lies, and manipulation, can Jersey discover the truth? Or will she be blinded by attraction, deceived by love, and destroyed by her past?

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About Jewel

Jewel is a free-spirited romance junkie with a quirky sense of humor.

With 10 years of flossing lectures under her belt, she took early retirement from her dental hygiene career to stay home with her three awesome boys and manage the family business.

After her best friend of nearly 30 years suggested a few books from the Contemporary Romance genre, Jewel was hooked. Devouring two and three books a week but still craving more, she decided to practice sustainable reading, AKA writing.

When she’s not donning her cape and saving the planet one tree at a time, she enjoys yoga with friends, good food with family, rock climbing with her kids, watching How I Met Your Mother reruns, and of course…heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, panty-scorching novels.


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Cover Reveal: Covert Vengeance by Kaylea Cross

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Today we are revealing the cover for an upcoming romantic suspense title from Kaylea Cross. COVERT VENGEANCE releases July 30, and you will not want to miss this series! Be sure to add the book to your TBR pile now and follow Kaylea for exclusive updates about the book and the brand new Vengeance series.

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Covert Vengeance by Kaylea Cross

Releasing July 30

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Book Blurb:

Revenge came at a heavy price.

Valkyrie hacker Amber Brown is deadly in her own right, but her preferred weapon is a keyboard. So after her teammates left her for dead, she took her revenge the way she was trained to—swiftly and brutally. Except one of her targets might be innocent. To right that wrong, Amber vows to rescue the at-risk Valkyrie no matter the cost, and this time she’s working alone. So when a sexy stranger shows up in the middle of a firefight and announces he’s been sent by her sister, it’s going to take a whole lot more than his word to make her trust him.

Chasing redemption may prove deadly.

Elite gun for hire Jesse Cordova lives on the edge of the law. When a new job offer sets off warning bells, he digs deeper and finds the startling truth. The woman he’s been tasked with capturing is a secret government assassin, and Amber Brown is unlike any target he’s gone after before. But bringing her in opens them up to a whole new level of danger, pitting them against one of the most ruthless assassins in the world. Now that the sexy Valkyrie has stolen his heart, Jesse will risk everything to see their mission through—knowing that the only way this ends is with one of them dying.

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Stealing Vengeance (releasing May 28)

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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kaylea Cross writes edge-of-your-seat military romantic suspense. Her work has won many awards, including the Daphne du Maurier Award of Excellence. A Registered Massage Therapist by trade, Kaylea is also an avid gardener, artist, Civil War buff, Special Ops aficionado, belly dance enthusiast and former nationally-carded softball pitcher. She lives in Vancouver, BC with her husband and family.


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