Sunday, June 30, 2013

'Reckless Endangerment' by Amber Lea Easton

Reckless Endangerment
by Amber Lea Easton
Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Categories: Mystery/Thriller
Publisher: Mountain Moxie Publishing
Release Date: April 13, 2013
Heat Level: Steamy
Word Count: 93,400

Heroes come in many forms--soldiers who fall and rise, ordinary people doing extraordinary things, women who battle for their marriage, reporters who fight for truth and justice, and men who put it all on the line for the women they love.

Sometimes heroes fall.

Colonel Michael Cedars is a decorated war hero returning home from Afghanistan. Wounded, unsure if he’ll walk again, he’s not sure how he fits in civilian life, and he definitely questions if he wants to remain married to the feisty redhead he married a world away.

Hope Shane’s never been one to play it safe. She met the Colonel while working as a war correspondent, fell in love with the man in uniform, watched him get blown up, and isn’t willing to give up on him now.

Back in Denver, Colorado, she’s working as an investigative reporter who becomes entangled in a human trafficking story. As the danger of her story intensifies, Michael is tested more than he ever imagined. Will he be able to see beyond what he’s lost to embrace what remains? Is he still the man she married or has he become a liability that could get her killed? Is he still the hero she claims him to be? Will her reckless pursuit of justice endanger the life they’ve pieced together?

Warning: This title is intended for readers over the age of 18 as it contains adult sexual situations and/or adult language, and may be considered offensive to some readers.

Read an excerpt:
“Screw you.” She wanted to shake him, make him see that he was wasting away like this. She’d been so lonely without him, had ached for him, and had been tortured by his silence. “I’m done giving into your wishes. I left you alone for five months and went through my own personal hell because of it. No more.”

“I hate you.”

“I love you,” she whispered.

“I wish I’d never met you.”

“Me, too, damn it.” She looked at him, no longer strong enough to stop a tear from escaping. “But we did meet. We loved each other. We got married on a cliff in Greece with our friends by our side and we laughed through our vows because we were so goddamn happy. I’m not leaving here until you acknowledge that. You married me. You loved me.”

“The man you loved died a long time ago.”

Frustration clawed inside her skull, aching for the right words that would break his resolve. She rubbed trembling hands over her hips and struggled for clarity. This was one argument she intended on winning...and it had been a long time coming.

“None of us are who we were. Do you think I’m the same person I was before seeing my best friend killed? Before stepping over Marishka’s body and the bodies of her murdered children? Before seeing you face down in the dirt? Do you think I don’t see corpses in my sleep? Do you think that hasn’t changed me?” she asked.

“You look the same.” His gaze flicked over her before sliding toward the window.

“Maybe I’m still walking on both of my feet, but that doesn’t mean other parts of me aren’t paralyzed.” She scrubbed her fists against the tears and hated herself for being weak. “I’m pissed at you for denying me access to you in Frankfurt. You have no idea—none—how much I needed to be with you when you were hurt and you made me out to be a liar. I’m your wife, for God’s sake.”

“Stop saying that word.”

“You’re a selfish bastard.” She shoved her hands through her hair and counted silently to twenty. “Say what you want, I don’t care because I’d rather fight with you than mourn you. I’d rather you hate me than feel nothing.”

“I do hate you.”

Blowing a strand of hair from her face, she grabbed the ouzo bottle, opened it and slammed cabinet doors looking for a glass.

“I know you’re lying,” she said.

“Get the hell out of here,” he yelled.

“Where are your goddamn glasses?” she asked between clenched teeth.

“How would I know? I’ve been here less than six fucking hours.”

“Who needs a glass, right?” She took a long swig of the liquor. The alcohol burned her throat but felt damn good. She took another swig before meeting his gaze.

“Is that how you’re dealing with your guilt? Drinking it away?” he asked.

She held the bottle out toward him. “Want a taste?”

He looked at her through narrowed eyes, muscle working overtime in his jaw.

“C’mon, soldier boy, look at it this way…maybe a taste will kill you,” she said.

For the first time since entering the room, a flicker of humor shot through his eyes. With a shrug, he grabbed the bottle and drank without breaking eye contact.

“I’m still alive,” he said.

“Sorry to disappoint you…again.” Needing to touch him, she reached for the scar that zigzagged across his forehead.

He flinched away from her touch.

“You need to leave. You don’t owe me anything,” he said without looking at her face.

She caught her lower lip between her teeth and studied his bent head before answering. “This isn’t about owing you anything.”

He met her gaze then, annoyance flashing in the brown depths. But there was something else there, too...pain so intense she took a step back.

“What is wrong with you?” he asked. “Just because I’m in this chair doesn’t mean that you can bully me.”

“Am I bullying you?” She grinned at the idea of bullying him. He’d always been the badass marine with more arrogance than necessary. Her independence clashed with his attitude more often than not, but that had been a good thing. Maybe...just maybe...he’d missed it. “I brought you fast food and alcohol. We even had a fight. I think you like that I’m here. I’m livening things up. You looked pretty bored when I walked in.”

He grabbed her hand before she could snag another fry. He squeezed her fingers so hard she thought her bones would snap. “Look at me. I’m not the man you married. I’m not even a marine anymore. Look at me.”

She only saw the man she loved who stared back with desperation in his eyes. She saw his hair thicker and longer than she’d ever seen it before and liked it. She saw his teeth sink into his lower lip and wanted them sinking into her skin. She only saw Michael.

“You’re still the sexiest man on the planet,” she said.

“You’re delusional.” He dropped her hand as if the mere touch of her skin sickened him.

“Maybe I am.”

“What are you getting out of this?”

“A headache.”

“I can’t…I’m changed. We’ll never be able to be like we were.” He looked at his legs. “Not like how you remember me anyway. I’m different now.”

“So am I. We’re all different.”

“It’s more than that and you know it. You and will be...expectations.”

“I see, so I should pretend you don’t exist because you feel awkward about sex? You must not think much of me, Colonel.” She bit out his rank between clenched teeth.

“When I see you that’s what I want, are you satisfied now? Right now I would like to throw you up against that counter, rip those jeans from you and fuck you. I remember how we were together. That’s what I want. I can’t do that. Do you hear me? I can’t have what I want and seeing you is torture for me. I can’t have you.”

Silence quaked in the room.

She put both of her hands on his knees, conscious that he couldn’t feel her touch. “You keep talking about what you’ve lost, but you haven’t lost me. Don’t you see that? You may not be a marine anymore and you may not be able to walk anymore, but you have me. I love you. I need you. Can’t that be enough? And you have your son. What about him? He needs you, too. You haven’t lost him.”

“I wish you hadn’t come here.”

“Too bad, I’m here. Deal with it.” She moved onto his lap and moved her hands over his shoulders. “What’s the problem?”

“Stop this,” he whispered.

“You want me to kiss you. You want to kiss me back.” She could see it in his eyes, the need, the desire, the question. “Is that what you want, Michael?”

“What would that prove?”

“Does it have to prove something? Can’t a kiss be a kiss?”


“Typical man.” She leaned within a fraction of his lips. “Don’t you remember high school? Don’t you remember when a kiss meant everything?”

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About the Author:

Amber Lea Easton is a multi-published cross genre author of romantic suspense, action adventure, mystery thrillers and new adult (coming in summer 2013). Her current releases cross all boundaries and appeal to a wide audience. If you love a clever plot, action that will leave you breathless, riveting characters and sexy love scenes, her books will appeal to you. "Smart is sexy," Easton says, which is why she focuses on smart heroines who always have a lot to lose yet find the courage to face their fears to overcome adversity. She's an avid reader of all genres or "whatever turns her on in the moment".

Easton grew up in Hartford, South Dakota, where she spent her time daydreaming of big adventures over the horizon under a giant blue South Dakota sky. Now living in Colorado, she's an avid traveler who incorporates her real life travels into her novels as much as possible (minus the illegal activities her characters become immersed in--she swears). To her, setting is another character in the novel and often serves as an inspiration. Love is her motivation for all things--whether it be writing, traveling, playing with her dogs or hanging with her two teenagers--if it's not done with love, then what's the point?

Connect with Amber Lea Easton

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  1. Was a very powerful excerpt,with strong undercurrent of myriad emotions!
    Cant wait to find out more :)
    Thank you for sharing it and the lovely giveaway
    Best Wishes,
    Sydney W

  2. You have been nominated for a Liebster Award (it's not spam, it's for real :)

  3. Congratulations on the publication of Reckless Endearment! It sounds like a very exciting book. Thanks for sharing the excerpt and book trailer. Also congrats on the nomination!

  4. Great excerpt. Thanks for the giveaway. This book sounds awesome and I have added it to my TBR.

  5. Great excerpt! Added to my TBR list :)


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