Thursday, September 19, 2013

Sneak Peek at Upcoming Release by E.E. Burke

Get lost in historical suspense...

“Thank you for saving me, Mr....?”
"O'Connor," Buck blurted, absurdly pleased by the gratitude shining in her eyes. On second thought, he should've given her an alias. Still, it was unlikely she'd ever heard of him. He wasn't as well known as his friend Cole Younger. 
“Couldn’t let you turn into an icicle." His breath clouded the air. Come to think of it, this ramshackle barn was damn frigid. It offered shelter from the sleet, but did little to keep the cold out. “Here, let me pile up some hay. It’ll block the drafts and keep you warm.”
"What about you? Are you warm enough?” She hugged the blanket, shivering.
“You want my coat?” His hands went to the buttons. He should’ve thought to offer it sooner.
Her eyes widened.  "No, I just thought you might be cold. We can share the hay."
For a moment, he was speechless. It'd been so long since anyone cared about his comfort, he hadn’t expected it and didn’t know how to respond.
He shrugged to hide how much her concern touched him. "Ah, don't worry about me. You hungry?" He rummaged through the saddlebag, finding the last piece of jerky. “It’s not much, but it’ll take the edge off.”
“Thank you.” She gifted him with a smile that snatched his breath.
He leaned back on one arm, trying his damnedest not to look like an infatuated schoolboy. Instead of sitting here mooning over her, he ought to find out what he could about the local situation. Whatever she knew might come in handy when he started searching for that railroad promoter he had to get rid of.
"So, you live out here, Mrs., uh…"
"Langford," she finished.
He tried the name in his head. Mrs. Langford. Nope, he preferred Venus.
She bit off a small piece of jerky with perfect white teeth, chewed slowly and swallowed before continuing. "Yes, I live…" Her voice trailed off and her lashes lowered.
He leaned forward, worried. "Something wrong?"
She shook her head. "I'm sorry, Mr. O'Connor. I wasn't honest before. I don't live around here. I was headed for a friend’s house before starting back to Fort Scott."
That she'd fibbed about where she lived didn't surprise him. She'd done it so he'd think her husband was nearby. But where she was going astonished him. “Fort Scott? That's another two days’ ride.”
“By rail it’s only a couple hours. But the line hasn’t reached Girard yet, so we have to go a few miles north to meet the workers’ train.”
"I was traveling with an escort. He attended a meeting earlier today in Baxter Springs and didn’t make it back. We’d arranged to stay overnight at a friend’s farm, so I thought I’d meet him there.”
Incredible. No genteel lady should be out here alone, and one who looked like Venus needed an armed guard. “Your husband abandoned you in Girard?”
Irritation flickered across her face. “He’s not my husband, and he didn’t abandon me.”
It was on the tip of Buck’s tongue to ask why she was traveling with a man who wasn’t her husband. But then, what did he care who she traveled with? He opted for a safer question. “Why were you in Girard? It’s not exactly safe in these parts.”
She finished chewing the last bite before responding. “I had business in town.”
Her lips sealed. Apparently, she didn’t wish to elaborate.
Buck smoothed his mustache with his thumb and forefinger, mulling over her hesitation. Just what kind of business would a wealthy lady have with a bunch of rowdy settlers? When he’d come up on her, she’d been terrified, even after he told her he was trying to help. Had even offered him money. More money… His scalp began to tingle, a sure sign something wasn’t right. He leaned forward, draping an arm over his knee to appear casual. "I didn't mean to frighten you when I rode up. You must've been expecting trouble."
That's one way to put it." She toyed with a curl, not meeting his eyes. "I thought you were going to kill me.


Her Bodyguard by E.E. Burke
Coming Oct. 10, 2013

The most dangerous man may be the one she hires…

For America “Amy” Langford, investing in the Border Tier Railroad isn’t about chasing riches. The savvy businesswoman is after bigger stakes: influence, respect, success her father didn’t live to see. Rioting settlers and underhanded competitors can’t stop her, but a killer might. When a ruggedly handsome drifter comes to her rescue, she trusts her instincts and hires him as her bodyguard.

Buck O'Connor has put his violent past behind him, but being a wanted man dictates a life of deceit. So what’s one more lie? He becomes Amy’s protector so he can secretly thwart her railroad’s progress to help his cousin avoid financial ruin. A great scheme—until he falls in love.

While Buck hides his true purpose, Amy lies to herself about her growing feelings for her bodyguard. But the price for deceit is steep, and the secrets they both hide could destroy their future—if they survive.

Today we get a sneak peek at E.E. Burke’s upcoming release, Her Bodyguard, the second novel in the series Steam! Romance and Rails.

Her Bodyguard is a sexy, suspenseful historical romance, just the kind of story that appeals to readers (like me) who enjoy elements of suspense and mystery mixed with romance. But I’ll let E.E. tell you more about it…and about an exciting promotion she’ll be running in October.

Heather: What sparked the idea for a Western romantic suspense?
E.E.: I love both Historical Romance and Romantic Suspense, so I wanted to combine them. What made it so appealing and suitable for this story was what I found when I started researching.
Her Bodyguard is set against an actual construction race between two railroads with long names, which were called The Katy and The Border Tier. The real story behind the Border Tier had everything a writer dreams about: crooked politics, underhanded landlords, angry mobs, liars, cheats, and mysterious killers.
It wasn’t difficult to craft a suspenseful tale around these colorful historical events and characters. The big challenge was developing primary characters as compelling as the supporting cast. 
Once again, I dove into the history books. The fiercely independent Kansas women who championed suffrage and equal rights served as models for my heroine, Amy; and the tough-as-nails but troubled survivors of Missouri’s guerrilla war gave me inspiration for my hero, Buck.
When I put these two together at cross purposes in the midst of a cutthroat railroad competition, with settlers’ rioting against the owners and a mysterious character stalking the heroine, the story just came together beautifully. 
Buck and Amy are so wrong for each other on the surface, but so right for each other when in comes to what counts: the heart. But first they have to overcome deceit and betrayal.

Heather: Sounds fascinating. When is it out?
E.E.: It’s being released Oct. 10, through all the usual online channels.

Heather: You mentioned a special promotion. Can you tell us about that?
E.E.: How about a romantic weekend in a Victorian mansion in the historical location where the story is set?

Heather: Sign me up!
E.E.: Starting in October you can sign up at my website to be entered into a drawing for a two-night stay at the romantic Lyons Twin Mansions in historic Fort Scott, Kansas. 
The Mansions were built in 1866, and I used the main house as a model for my heroine’s home. Fort Scott has an amazing history. It's home to a restored 1840s military fort that figured prominently in America's Western expansion, Bleeding Kansas and the Civil War.

More information about the promotion and the B&B will be posted on my website as of the first of October. 

CURRENT RELEASES: Kate’s Outlaw, out as a separate novella, also part of Passion’s Prize anthology written with Golden Heart sisters Jennifer Jakes and Jacqui Nelson.

UP NEXT: Her Bodyguard, Oct. 10 and the sequel to Passion’s Prize, January 2014. I’m also working on a new historical romance series, Buffalo Creek, featuring two sexy Cherokee brothers. If I can write faster, the first book will be out by Christmas.

Will you have a giveaway today? Yes, an advance copy of Her Bodyguard. How's that worm for the early birds?

Do you have a question for your readers?
I love visiting historic places and staying in places like Lyons Twin Mansions, where I can immerse myself in the past. What are your favorite getaways?

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  1. Congrats on your upcoming release--sounds like a great story! :)

    1. Thanks, Lara. I really loved writing this one.

  2. Replies
    1. I like Europe too. Although, some places are better than others.

  3. Congrats! Sounds terrific!

    I think I would love to see Italy. So much history and pretty too!

    1. Italy is at the top of my wish list, too! Thanks for coming by!

  4. I love all these Rail books all fit together. Sounds like a wonderful series.

    1. Thanks, Clover. It's been a blast to write. I'll have sequel to Passion's Prize out in January and have plans for at least two more RR themed books, but I could go on and on because there are so many great stories out there. Appreciate you stopping by!

  5. Well, E.E., I've decided there are 3 different types of vacations.
    1) UNPLUGGING: but that mostly means that I have to cook and clean the pup-up camper and shower in state parks facilities.
    2) EXHAUSTING: visiting everything and doing everything in the area, driving to another area, and continuing to do everything all the way home.
    & 3) VACATION: Sitting on the beach (no rental car so you have to walk and you feel too lazy to walk anywhere but on the beach). The sounds of the waves, sand between your toes, and a fruity frozen drink in your hand....

    I, personally, am soooooo ready for a Vacation that I can't think of where I might want to go on an "Exhaustion". LOL

    Oh, but...dreamwise...Anywhere would be nice. I'd love to visit Philadelphia and the battlefields. Or England, Scotland, Ireland, Spain, the Mediterain ... see, I knew I couldn't narrow it down. :-)

    1. LOL. You are SO right. I'm somewhere in between sitting and going. Love to visit places, but also have time to unwind. Preferably with a nice view and a glass of wine.

  6. I won an all expense paid trip to Paradise Island, Bahamas 25 years ago and it was fabulous, but one of my favorite vacations was to the diamond fields in Arkansas. It was so much fun to just sit out in a big plowed field, dig, and search for diamonds or other jewels. The kids were young and we all had so much fun.
    Congrats on the new release! You've got my interest and would love to read it.

    1. Our family just went to Atlantis this past year. Was a blast. The diamond dig sounds cool, too. Thanks for coming by. Hope you signed up for the free advance copy. If you tweet the giveaway, you get another point, increases your chances to win. Good luck!

  7. I find that wherever you are or go, there is always some fascinating history. Museums are great too!

    1. That's the truth! Found a tiny museum in Trading Post, KS that has the door from John Brown's cabin. Just goes to show it's worth stopping when you see those historical markers (nudge nudge to my husband, who hates to stop).

  8. I always enjoyed visiting Greenfield Village, an historical colonial village/museum in Dearborn, Michigan. It's next door to the Henry Ford Museum, which is also fabulous.

    Marcy Shuler

  9. I've been there! Very cool place. Thanks for coming by. Don't forget to enter the drawing!