Redheads & Ranchers Book 3
The first two books in my Redheads & Ranchers series, JENNY’S VOICE and HUNTER’S PRIDE are currently available at your favorite online bookseller. These days, I’m busy working on the third and final book of this collection of stand-alone contemporary steamy romance novels.
In ANNA’S HEART, Anna Graves works hard helping to run her family’s Wyoming dude ranch. Still reeling from the tragic loss of her smokejumper fiancé in a horrific wildfire, she’s content to hide from the world as she teaches horseback riding lessons to tourists by day and reads smutty romance novels by night.
When world-famous Scottish actor Angus McGregor needs to brush up his cowboy skills in preparation for his starring role in a new Western, he heads to Sweetwater Ranch in the boondocks of Wyoming. He’s immediately fascinated by Anna, who won’t give him the time of day. Can he break down the self-protective wall she’s built?
In this brand-new (and unedited) teaser, you can meet Angus McGregor before Anna does.
“What the everloving fuck is this?” Alanna’s shrill query sliced through the tranquil morning. The aroma of Ethiopian arabica hung in the air as a sharp slapping sound against the marble countertop punctuated her question.
Standing at the kitchen sink and keeping his gaze on the rolling waves of the Pacific Ocean lapping at his own private stretch of sand below the house, Angus McGregor groaned inwardly, mentally counting to ten.
“It’s an eviction notice,” replied calmly in his deep Scottish brogue. “Says it at the top.”
“I see that,” Alanna hissed. “But seriously, Angus, you’re throwing me out?”
Mug of coffee in hand, he turned slowly. “Alanna, we broke up two months ago. I’ve let you stay here this long. It’s time to move on.”
She picked up the legal notice and waved it at him. “Where am I supposed to go? Have you thought of that?”
“Have you thought of it? You’ve had two months. I don’t mean to be a hard-arse, seriously I don’t. But I’m selling the house. You’ll have to find somewhere else to live.”
Alanna used her right hand to flip her long blonde hair over her shoulder. “Can’t I stay until the house sells?”
“No, you can’t. I’m leaving today for Wyoming. I’ll be away for a month. You can stay here until the end of the week, but then you need to be out. Douglas will change the locks at that time, and if you’re here after that, he’ll report you as a trespasser.”
Angus pictured his Samoan head of personal security. Douglas Matua was nicest person in the world, but at six-foot-nine and 300 pounds, he was a force to be reckoned with. He’d definitely spared Angus from serious injury once or twice when overzealous fans tried to get too close.
Alanna rolled her huge blue eyes. “You’re going to Wyoming for that stupid cowboy movie!”
How was it that he hadn’t noticed her annoyingly nasal New England accent when they’d first met? He supposed he’d been dazzled by her beauty and by her fame. Say what you will about Alanna Powell, she was gorgeous and her filmography was impressive. The pair had met on the set of a movie and had been tabloid gossip darlings ever since.
But eventually, Angus had grown tired of her constant need to be the center of attention. For Alanna, the term high maintenance was merely a starting point. Beneath her highly polished exterior, she was selfish and demanding. Angus soon found her exhausting.
He thought back to they’d first met. While he’d been a successful actor for several years, in the back of his mind, he still felt like that grubby boy who’d grown up on the streets of Glasgow. Winning the attention of a beautiful starlet like Alanna Powell had felt like winning the lottery, but he’d always had the nagging thought that one day, he’d be discovered as a pretender, a fake and a fraud. She cast a big shadow, too. Often, he felt more like Alanna’s accessory than a serious actor in his own right.
When Alanna had insisted that they become engaged six months earlier, Angus had gone along with the idea, maybe more to pacify her than for reasons of romantic love. He’d dutifully purchased the ring she’d demanded, shelling out more than a million dollars for the huge diamond solitaire. Price wasn’t an issue, really. His last role in a blockbuster superhero movie had earned him fifteen million, and there were many more films in the offing.
But as Alanna morphed from annoying girlfriend to bridezilla fiancee, Angus realized he couldn’t see spending the rest of his life with her. As gently as possible, he’d broken off the engagement four months later, agreeing to allow her to stay in his Malibu beach house until she found a place of her own.
In the kitchen overlooking the beach, Angus drew a deep breath against the barb she’d known would hit its mark. After ten years in Hollywood, he finally had the opportunity to advance his career with the chance to direct a western he’d optioned from a novel he’d fallen in love with.
This was his chance to be either highly successful or to fail in a most spectacular way. And now more than ever, he was determined to make the best film he possibly could.
“Yes, Alanna, the western. I’m spending the month at a ranch in Wyoming to learn the basics of riding and that.”
Alanna snorted derisively. “You’re kicking me out of the house and running off to play cowboy. Directing is harder than you think, you know.” She arched a knowing eyebrow.
“I won’t discuss it any further, Alanna. You have until the end of the week.”
Carrying his cup of coffee, he headed out of the kitchen.
“You can’t have the engagement ring back,” she called after him.
He turned to see her waving her left hand mockingly.
“I don’t want it,” he shrugged. “Wear it in good health.” With that, he headed upstairs to pack.ANNA’S HEART by Pandora Spocks