Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Riding for Redemption Book Tour: Spotlight and Excerpt

Desperate to find her place in the world, Sara Beth dreams of applying for the Miss Wrangler Montana competition that tours with the rodeo circuit.

Riding horses has become her anchor until a near fatal accident takes more from her than she’d ever willingly sacrifice.

Determined to prove his business training, Johnny seeks out the Rourke family to call in an old favor. When he embroils himself in Sara Beth’s life, he has to prove they’re nothing more than friends.

Seeking independence, both Sara Beth and Johnny lean on each other more and more, until love threatens their friendship. Will they seek out each other or be confused by their dreams?

Can either of them leave their past and embrace their future?

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Michael stepped down the stairs, coming to a stop beside the bike. A slow smile reached his eyes and he held out his hand for a strong shake. “Jonathan Mayfair. Holy crap. I can’t believe it. It’s been, what? Six years since you came to Rourke land?”

“Seven.” Johnny looked around at the group and removed his sunglasses. “What’s going on? You have something happen?”

The joy slid from Michael’s face. He jerked his head. “Yeah, my girl’s sister took off on Sugar--”

“Sugar? Not the horse Uncle Tim wanted to put down? When we sold her, we thought she was going to a small-time rodeo. I had no idea you bought her.” Johnny’s jaw slackened. Who the hell would climb on that horse? The animal was half devil.

“Walk with me.” Michael waited for Johnny to fall into step with him as they headed toward the barn where the majority of the men gathered. “I bought Sugar as an outreach. We buy undesirables and retrain them. This girl’s been trying to get on Sugar for a long time now. The horses I take in … no one else can handle them. Mostly it’s a rescue mission and gives them a place to live but also a second chance at being a riding horse.” He studied Johnny as if he sought his understanding. “They have a lot of life left to give.”

“Yeah, I’d heard you were running a horse mission here. In fact, that’s why I’m here. But that can wait. What about this girl?” His reasons for returning to Rourke Ranch weren’t to be overlooked and if Michael was distracted while Johnny explained, well … he’d have a heck of a time getting Michael to agree.

Michael sighed, his shoulders drooping. “Sara Beth … she’s in love with these animals and doesn’t believe they’re bad. She took the horse this afternoon. We haven’t seen her since.”

Slowing beside the building, they faced each other. Johnny understood the worry. Sugar wasn’t a normal riding horse. She wasn’t even a normal rough rider -- she surpassed even the meanest of stallions -- on a cranky day. On a regular day, her docility rivaled the sleeping horses. Johnny rubbed the back of his neck. “Maybe she’s out for a long ride. You and I used to do that all the time, remember? Even pulled a few overnighters.”

“You’re right. I wouldn’t worry, except Sugar returned three hours ago from that direction. Sara Beth had to have ridden her that direction to remain unseen. But we made it to the forest and got a call from the river. Someone reported seeing a rider on a horse that way down by the riverbed.” Michael pointed east toward the plains past Clearwater County. “We’ve been searching, but I had to call in more men. It’s too much ground to cover.”

Johnny didn’t hesitate. “Can I help?” He hadn’t been on a horse in a long time, but for Michael, he’d jump back in the saddle. They’d been close before they’d gone off to different colleges and ran with different crowds. Michael used to like the party scene while Johnny had enjoyed his weekends in the library.

BonnieBonnie R. Paulson mixes her science and medical background with reality and possibilities to make even myths seem likely and give every romance the genetic strength to survive. Bonnie has discovered a dark and twisty turn in her writing that she hopes you enjoy as much as she has enjoyed uncovering it. Dirt biking with her family in the Northwest keeps her sane.

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