Ahhh, beach life. One of summer’s joys. Sun, sand…bare-chested men….ahem, but I digress. I was merely distracted by the cover of Mari Manning’s new romantic suspense release! We can’t wait to hear all about it, but since Mari is this week’s guest at Rosedale Cottage, she first must share her summertime #RomanticIdea.
Here is a #romanticidea ripped from the headlines…of a small town newspaper. Have a slice of watermelon for dessert. Here’s how to make it romantic. After dinner, cut a generous slice from a huge, seedy watermelon. You must settle yourself on your door step or deck or porch to consume it. Spit out the seeds. In fact, spit them as far as you can. The best spitter gets to watch the loser do the dinner dishes.
Watermelon and a hammock? I don’t think those dinner dishes are going to get done anytime soon. Maybe paper plates are a better idea, especially where there’s a good book to read. Mari, tell us about your newest release, Stranger In My House.
When Officer Kirby Swallow’s half-sister is threatened, Kirby assumes her sister’s identity and journeys to the remote Texas ranch her sister calls home to catch a killer. Kirby confronts a growing list of suspects and a rising body count, not to mention the ranch manager, Seth Maguire, who sees past the charade to the warm, generous girl beneath. But can Kirby trust a man who rejects the one thing she holds dear: family? Her love dares all, but as the killer closes in, will it also be blind?
Self-reliant Seth Maguire is manager of the struggling Shaw Valley Ranch. His future appears empty until the ranch’s wild, unpredictable heiress suddenly morphs into a very hot lady cop. What starts out as just another seduction turns into something deep and, for him, frightening. Then the killer is revealed and Seth is faced with an impossible choice. Will his fragile, uncertain love be enough to save Kirby?
This sounds like the perfect steamy read for a steamy summer night. And that cover! Did I mention that I really like it? Oh yeah… I guess I did.
Anyway…can you share an excerpt?
The aroma of fresh coffee drifted past Kirby’s nose. A man’s raspy breath sawed the air. A wool blanket tickled her neck. Her eyelids drifted open. Planks of varnished redwood stretched across the ceiling.
Where am I?
“Thought you might sleep all morning.”
Kirby bolted up. She was in a strange bed in a strange room in a strange house. Maguire slouched against the doorjamb, slurping coffee and studying her. Rumpled curls, muscular chest, vee of dark hair running down his belly, sweatpants hanging on narrow hips.
Alarm jolted through her. He looked satisfied and sexy. What happened last night? Had he… Had she? Lord Almighty! Had she slept with Maguire? A searing pain drove through her head, and she fell back against the pillows.
“What…am…I…doing…here?” Her mouth was dry, her tongue thick. As if she’d been on a bender.
Maguire pulled up a chair. The scrape of chair legs against wood vibrated inside her head like thunder. “Found you wandering around last night,” he said.
“Last night?” She remembered the sudden crush of exhaustion, of feeling too tired to hold up her head. Then nothing. Not putting on her T-shirt or brushing her teeth or turning down the bed. Speaking of T-shirts, what was she wearing, if anything? She brushed her fingers over her hips. The Rangers jersey twisted securely around her.
“Just after midnight. You were banging on the barn.”
“I don’t remember.” Her emotions swung between sheer embarrassment and sheer terror at being discovered. Either way, she couldn’t bear to look at him. “Was I, uh—I mean, did I, uh, do anything?”
“After the striptease?”
Shocked, she whipped her head around.
Where can we buy a copy of “Stranger In My House?”
Buy links to all the major electronic sites are here: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/stranger-in-my-house/
Let’s start with the fun stuff. I love small towns, mysteries, quiet men, laughter, old-fashioned spaghetti dinners. I love boots and shopping and jokes and Hershey’s dark chocolate and white wine. I love lots of things. But my first love is reading.
I love to read. Just about anything, but it has to be well-written. I go through periods where I am into historical novels or romance or mystery or history or biography. I never know when my desires will suddenly change.
Now for the writer-ish, official stuff: Mari Manning is the author of several contemporary romances and three romantic suspense novels set in the Texas Hill Country. Stranger at My Door is the first in her A Murder in Teas series. The second, Stranger in My House will be released by Entangled on June 13. The third book in the series is Stranger in My Bed. Currently Mari is working on a series of cozy mysteries.
She and her husband live in Chicago.