Outlaw Hearts - Teaser #6

Available June 2, 2015
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Jake turned away, a feeling of numbness moving through his entire body. Suddenly there were no birds singing. Suddenly the beauty around him existed no more. He didn’ t want it to exist, for then he would have to face the fact that soon this freedom, the enjoyment of these simple things, all the love he had found these past years with his work and his family, all of it was going to be taken from him. … Lloyd! His son was going to discover the awful truth now! In the blink of an eye all their lives would be changed. As usual, his wise, patient, devoted wife had been right, and oh, how it would hurt Lloyd and Evie!

“You’ve got time to light out of here, Jake,” Jess told him. “You know I’ll look after the family till you can send for them again.”

A quick gust of wind swept down from the mountains and blew Jake’s hat off. He breathed deeply of the sweet smell of pine and mountain wildflowers. “No,” he answered, running a hand through his still-thick hair. Its near-black color now showed streaks of gray at the temples. “No more running. It wouldn’t do any good this time.”

The two men just looked at each other for several long silent seconds. There was no more running this time. Jake could be facing a firing squad or a noose before it was all over. Jess could see the man fighting tears as he put out his hand. “You’ve been a good friend, Jess. I’m trusting you to keep my family safe, help them however they need it.”

Jess grasped his hand and nodded, clearing his throat to find his voice. “This ain’t your fault, Jake, when you think about it. It’s your pa’s fault. If not for him, none of the other would have happened.” 

Jake released his grip and walked to Jess’s horse, feeling as though someone had set a boulder on his chest. “Trouble is, Jess, Lloyd’s going to say the same thing. This is going to change his life, and he’s going to say it’s all my fault.” He mounted up. “And he’ll be right.”



Miranda lowered the rifle. “Good afternoon, Lieutenant.” She set the gun aside. “What brings you way out here?”

Gentry looked around warily. “Your husband about?”

“No.” Jake! He was here for Jake! Why? After all these years, why had God let this happen!

Outlaw Hearts - Teaser #5


Available June 2, 2015

“How’d you get so good with guns, Pa? Mom told me your own father died when you were about my age and that your mother was already dead. You didn’t have anybody to teach you.”

Jake smoked quietly for a moment, staring at the campfire. Tell him the truth, a little voice nagged him. There couldn’t be a better time. “I just taught myself,” he answered. “I was orphaned at your age, had no other family. That was back in Texas in the thirties. Things were pretty lawless then. A kid my age had to know how to defend himself, how to provide for himself.

Lloyd leaned closer over the fire and turned the spit. Fat dripped from the rabbit onto hot coals and made little hissing sounds. “You ever have to kill a man back then?” he asked. 

Jake met his eyes. Yeah, my own father. And a hell of a lot of others. How could he tell (his own son) that? The kid looked at him sometimes like he was a God. If he knew the truth …

Outlaw Hearts - Teaser #4

“Somebody get Jake!” a man shouted.

Kennedy shot again, hitting the man in the back. Three innocent people! Miranda could see the stands now, heard shouting, more screams, children beginning to cry. Plenty of the men sported guns because of the shooting contest, but none seemed willing to get involved. A couple of men rode off on horses, deciding just to get out of there. The band stopped its playing. She could see Jake now, standing in the middle of the corral. To her horror, another man, obviously part of Kennedy’s bunch, held a crying Lloyd, pointing a gun to the baby’s head. The black stallion was trotting nervously in a circle around the inside of the corral fence. … 

She took faint hope in the fact that Jake was still alive and standing, and he wore one of his revolvers. He had put it on because of the shooting contest, but it was only one gun with six bullets. How many men did Kennedy have along? 

Now you know the kind of man your Jake used to be, Juan had told her. She would not believe he had ever been this bad. He would not stick a knife into a woman’s ribs. He would not threaten a little boy. Never. He would not rape, or come to something like this and shoot people down like rabbits. Still, he had ridden with these men at one time, and now it seemed he would pay a much higher price for it than if he had gone to prison. Her heart ached at the look in his eyes when Juan dragged her around the corral fence to stand next to the man who held Lloyd. The baby reached for her, screaming, “Mama!”


Available June 2, 2015

United by chance, bound by fate, consumed by passion.

Miranda Hayes has lost everything-her family, her husband, her home. Orphaned and then widowed, desperate to find a safe haven, she sets out to cross a savage land alone...until chance brings her face-to-face with notorious gunslinger Jake Harkner.

Hunted by the law and haunted by a brutal past, Jake has spent a lifetime fighting for everything he has. He's never known a moment's kindness...until fate brings him to the one woman willing to reach past his harsh exterior to the man inside. He would die for her. He would kill for her. He will do whatever it takes to keep her his.

Spanning the dazzling West with its blazing deserts and booming gold towns, Jake and Miranda must struggle to endure every hardship that threatens to tear them apart. But the love of an outlaw comes with a price...and even their passion may not burn bright enough to conquer the coming darkness. 

Outlaw Hearts - Teaser #3

“Jake Harkner, put me down!” Randy liked to use his real name in private, felt he should hear it and learn to be proud of it. She made a mild protest when he dumped her on the bed and moved on top of her, but her weak objections vanished when his lips covered her own again in a penetrating kiss. This was so like the man she loved, spontaneous, gently demanding, sometimes a little wild and unpredictable. “Jake this is crazy.”

He moved his lips to her neck and ran his hand under her dress. It was warm, and she hadn’t bothered with extra slips. “Just a quick little sign of affection, mi querida,” he said softly. She felt her drawers coming off. “Maybe tonight we’ll do this again, take our time.”

Just the words brought on a surge of hot desire. When Jake Harkner “took his time” with a woman, he had the most exotic ways of taking her to a world of ecstasy. She never dreamed there were so many ways to make love. With Jake it always seemed so right and natural.



Available June 2, 2015

United by chance, bound by fate, consumed by passion.

Miranda Hayes has lost everything-her family, her husband, her home. Orphaned and then widowed, desperate to find a safe haven, she sets out to cross a savage land alone...until chance brings her face-to-face with notorious gunslinger Jake Harkner.

Hunted by the law and haunted by a brutal past, Jake has spent a lifetime fighting for everything he has. He's never known a moment's kindness...until fate brings him to the one woman willing to reach past his harsh exterior to the man inside. He would die for her. He would kill for her. He will do whatever it takes to keep her his.

Spanning the dazzling West with its blazing deserts and booming gold towns, Jake and Miranda must struggle to endure every hardship that threatens to tear them apart. But the love of an outlaw comes with a price...and even their passion may not burn bright enough to conquer the coming darkness.

Outlaw Hearts - Teaser #2

She opened her eyes and managed a weak smile. “You have a son,” she whispered.

No. He couldn’t think about that. He couldn’t really have a son of his own. It was all so unreal. Maybe if he didn’t look at the kid, this would all just go away. “You hang on, Randy. Don’t you dare leave me with a kid to raise on my own. You know I can’t do it.”

She smiled more. “Yes, you can.”

He put his hands to either side of her face and bent down to kiss her forehead. “You listen to me. I love you like I never thought I could love another human being.” He felt a lump rising in his throat, a desperate fear at the thought that he could lose her. “I need you, Randy, and you know all the reasons why. Don’t you go and die on me, you hear? If I lose you I’ll go right back to that old life. You don’t want me to do that, do you?”

“You talk … big, Jake,” she whispered. “Don’t … mean it … got to take care of our little son.”

He brushed her cheek with his own, tears forming in his eyes. “Damn it, Randy, don’t you leave me. Don’t you dare leave me!”

“Come and see your son, Jake.” Mrs. Anderson touched his arm.

Jake straightened, looking over at the cradle … finding it difficult to picture a child of his own lying in it. Why did he dread this? What if he really did love the child? … That meant he couldn’t bear for anything to ever hurt the child, especially not his past.

The sins of the father are visited upon the son. He remembered hearing a street preacher shout that once back in Missouri, recalled how he had applied those words to his own father. And look how he had turned out, just as mean and unfeeling and murderous as his father. To think his own past could somehow scar his son …


Available June 2, 2015

United by chance, bound by fate, consumed by passion.

Miranda Hayes has lost everything-her family, her husband, her home. Orphaned and then widowed, desperate to find a safe haven, she sets out to cross a savage land alone...until chance brings her face-to-face with notorious gunslinger Jake Harkner.

Hunted by the law and haunted by a brutal past, Jake has spent a lifetime fighting for everything he has. He's never known a moment's kindness...until fate brings him to the one woman willing to reach past his harsh exterior to the man inside. He would die for her. He would kill for her. He will do whatever it takes to keep her his.

Spanning the dazzling West with its blazing deserts and booming gold towns, Jake and Miranda must struggle to endure every hardship that threatens to tear them apart. But the love of an outlaw comes with a price...and even their passion may not burn bright enough to conquer the coming darkness.

Today's Outlaw Hearts Teaser

He closed his eyes and stretched out beside her, kissing her hair. “I’m no good, Randy. There’s no future with a man like me.”

She ran a hand inside his shirt and leaned closer to kiss his chest. “We don’t know that, yet. And you are good, Jake.”

He wrapped his fingers into her hair and rolled on top of her. “If I was really good, I would never have let things go this far with you. You mean too much to me, and if you stay with me you’re going to suffer, Randy. You’ll always be running, always wondering when someone might find out who I am and come gunning for me. Life is hell with me, believe me –“

She touched his lips again. “Tell me you can take me to Nevada now and just leave me there and ride off without me. Can you do that, Jake?” His only reply was to meet her mouth in a savage kiss.


Available June 2, 2015

United by chance, bound by fate, consumed by passion.

Miranda Hayes has lost everything-her family, her husband, her home. Orphaned and then widowed, desperate to find a safe haven, she sets out to cross a savage land alone...until chance brings her face-to-face with notorious gunslinger Jake Harkner.

Hunted by the law and haunted by a brutal past, Jake has spent a lifetime fighting for everything he has. He's never known a moment's kindness...until fate brings him to the one woman willing to reach past his harsh exterior to the man inside. He would die for her. He would kill for her. He will do whatever it takes to keep her his.

Spanning the dazzling West with its blazing deserts and booming gold towns, Jake and Miranda must struggle to endure every hardship that threatens to tear them apart. But the love of an outlaw comes with a price...and even their passion may not burn bright enough to conquer the coming darkness.

Historical Research


Anyone who writes about history must, of course, do plenty of research. I am very particular about getting my facts straight because doing so brings much more realism to my stories. I have at times even brought real historical characters into my books, as with a young George Washington in INTO THE WILDERNESS. Some people might dread the research. NOT ME! I enjoy reading for research more than general reading, and always, whatever I am researching not only helps me with facts I need for the book I am working on; but it also leads me to a wealth of new ideas. So the research only helps me find plot for future books.

Most of my hundreds of research books come from the University of Nebraska and the University of Oklahoma, where you can find information on just about anything and everything you’d ever want to know about America’s “Old West” and Native Americans. And I do use books most of the time, not the internet. I know exactly which book to turn to for whatever I am working on. And every book has been read, highlighted, underlined, dog-eared – you name it. The Time/Life books on the Old West are fantastic, as is ANYTHING by Alan Eckert. He takes history and beautifully brings it to life.

I couldn’t begin to name all my favorite reference books. There are too many. I will say, though, that for a chronological history of our Native Americans, you can’t beat BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE by Dee Brown. My own paperback copy is falling to pieces, but I have a hard cover copy that Mr. Brown signed for me at a western writers’ conference. I truly treasure that book!

Born To Write

I am sitting here thinking about the fact that I have written 60 books over the past 30 years. That’s an average of two books a year, and I have no memory of when or how I did that. Each book takes about six months to write, some less, some more. That does not include the edits and re-writes that come back once the book is finished and sent in, so it’s a constant procedure of writing, reading, editing, writing, reading, editing, writing …

I have written a minimum of SIX MILLION words, based on 60 books at 100,000 words. However, most of my books ranged closer to 120,000 words, so I’d better up that to a total of SEVEN MILLION, TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND words. And again, that’s just first drafts. And it doesn’t count all the blogs and magazine articles and proposals I have written over the years. And of course there is the research, probably thousands of hours of research. I have hundreds of research books in my personal library, and I have read pretty much every one of them. They are all filled with highlights, underlining, hand-written notes and dog-eared pages. I don’t remember when I did all that either.

Christmas Giveaway!


It's the week before Christmas, and I've got a special gift for all my fabulous Readers! Starting tomorrow, December 20th, enter the giveaway below for a daily chance to win a copy of my Brides Omnibus! Then, on Christmas day I'll draw a name for the Grand Prize of a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

I can’t believe we are headed into Christmas. It seems summer always disappears suddenly and without warning. And the way the weather has turned, I am already looking forward to NEXT summer! I am especially anxious for the Romantic Times conference next May in Dallas, Texas, because there I will be pushing my 60th published book, DO NOT FORSAKE ME, a sequel to OUTLAW HEARTS, which will be reissued and published next June, right before the sequel. The covers for these books are outstanding {what do you think!?!}, and I am planning some wonderful promotional events for these two books, which I absolutely loved writing.