Hi guys and gals!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we're welcoming Meryl Moss Media as they tour the blogosphere with the latest from author Jodi Thomas. Perhaps you've read her work? If so, then you're a fan of Contemporary Romance with a penchant for tales unfolding on the ranch as secrets hide around every fence post; if not, then you're in MY boat and just taking a closer look at her work RIGHT NOW. You know what though? Either way, you're in good company, so let's get this book party started, shall we? Ladies and gents, please direct your adoring gaze to today's blog tour guest and spotlight title....
Ransom Canyon series, Book 2
About the book...
On a dirt road marked by haunting secrets, three strangers caught at life's crossroads must decide what to sacrifice to protect their own agendas…and what they're each willing to risk for love.
If there's any place that can convince Angela Harrell to stop running, it's Ransom Canyon. And if there's any man who can reveal desires more deeply hidden than her every fear, it's Wilkes Wagner. Beneath the rancher's honorable exterior is something that just might keep her safe…or unwittingly put her in danger's path.
With his dreams of leaving this small Texas town swallowed up by hard, dusty reality, all Wilkes has to show for his life is the Devil's Fork Ranch. Though not one to let false hope seduce him, he can't deny the quiet and cautious beauty who slips into his world and changes everything.
~~~ EXCERPT ~~~
Devil’s Fork Ranch
Wilkes Wagner stared at his aging uncle, wondering which of them had completely lost their mind. Common sense rarely ran in the Wagner family, but Great-Uncle Vern’s suggestion was ridiculous.
“I’ve given it some thought, and this is the only answer, boy,” the crippled-up old cowboy repeated as if Wilkes were ten and not thirty-two. “Look at it this way, we breed cattle, don’t we? Why not just pick out a woman with all the right traits and mate with her? It shouldn’t take but a few tries before we got at least one offspring to claim the next generation. And there’s a fifty-fifty chance we’ll get a boy on the first try.”
“You mean marry some woman, don’t you?” Wilkes was never sure when his uncle was kidding.
“Of course! There’s an order to these kinds of things. You’d need to marry her first, get her pregnant and wait for a son.” The old man lit a pipe that looked as if it might have survived the Battle of the Alamo. “Look on the bright side, half your life is about over anyway. If you’re miserable at marriage, the last thirty or forty years will seem to move slower with a mean woman around the place and we’ll all work harder so we don’t come home early.”Wilkes rolled his eyes. He needed another drink. Or better yet give Great-Uncle Vern a few more and with luck he’d pass out.
To humor the cowboy, Wilkes asked, “And what would those traits be that I’m looking for in this breeding-bride?”
Vern smiled as if he’d won the argument. “Stout. You don’t want one of those skinny girls who only eats out of the garden. She’ll need to have a little meat on her bones. Ain’t nothing worse than trying to cuddle up to a skinny gal on a cold night. I did that once in Amarillo, and about midnight I decided driving home in a snowstorm would be warmer.”
Wilkes grabbed a pen off the poker table and started writing on the back of his Western Horseman magazine. Not skinny.
His uncle leaned back in an old rocker that had come to the Devil’s Fork Ranch in a covered wagon. “She’ll need to know how to cook and clean and sew, too, otherwise she’d be wearing out the road to town buying takeout, hiring housekeepers and replacing clothes she’s lost a button on.”
“All that might be hard to find these days.” The only thing the four or five women Wilkes had stepped out with in the past six years could make for dinner was reservations. He considered them cooks if they knew how to use the microwave for popcorn.
His aging uncle wasn’t paying attention. He was busy thinking. “And she needs to be rich. Not just have money coming to her, mind, but already have it in the bank. You don’t want to count on her father liking you, ’cause if he don’t he might cut her out of the will. Then you’ll be stuck with a poor wife with rich habits.”
Rich. Wilkes scribbled.
“And dumb.” Uncle Vern lit his pipe. “Ain’t no smart girl ever going to marry you, even if you are good-looking. If she’s got much schooling, she’ll want to work at something or sit around and read all day.”
Wilkes had humored his old uncle long enough. Vern was the dumbest and the youngest of four children, and all his brothers and sisters claimed he’d been dropped on his head one time too many when he was a baby. He had lived on the Wagner family ranch all of his seventy-seven years. The rule was whoever ran the Devil’s Fork also had to keep an eye on Vern. Wilkes’s father and grandfather had done it, and now it was Wilkes’s turn. The few other relatives, who’d been smart enough to move to the city, never wanted to come back and take over the job.
This crazy idea Vern had tonight was the worst one yet.
Wilkes leaned forward until Vern’s whiskey-blurred eyes focused on him. “I’m real busy with the calving right now, uncle. Do you think you could keep a lookout for a possible wife? She shouldn’t be too hard to find. She’s chubby, eats beef and is rich and dumb. She’ll be wearing a homemade dress and probably have freshly made jam dripping down her chins. Oh, I forgot, she needs to be easy to impregnate, ’cause I won’t be visiting her often.” Wilkes fought down a laugh. “Only, that trait might be hard to prove on sight.”
Vern didn’t get the joke. He rocked back so far that the forward swing, a moment later, shoved him out of the chair and onto his wobbly legs. “I’ll do my best for you! I promise. Might go into Crossroads tomorrow and put up a few signs. I don’t think I’ve been to town since spring and the Franklin sisters always say they miss seeing me.”
Wilkes laughed. “You do that, Uncle Vern.”
About the author...
Special thanks to Amanda at Meryl Moss Media for the chance to bring this promotion to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, the tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now via Harlequin Books, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.
Until next time...happy reading!