Message From The Author

Author's Message

Atlanta

A child's trusting love can bridge the greatest chasm. In the final book of my southern trilogy, Fortune O'Brien is stunned to discover that the son he thought had died is alive.

This story, which seemed to write itself, is about Fortune O'Brien, who has become a man of steel because of tragedies in his life. From the first volatile confrontation with the auburn-haired Claire Dryden, he finds a woman just as determined as he is.

Colonel O'Brien's first wife died when their son, Michael, was a baby. Certain he will never love again, Fortune proposes a marriage of convenience to the woman who has cared for Michael during the first six years of his life. Claire accepts, never expecting to love or be loved, yet wanting to be near the child she thinks of as her own.

Fortune awakens passion in Claire while their stormy emotions clash. The backdrop is the tumultuous South at the end of the Civil War.

Here is an excerpt from ATLANTA:

She raised the rifle higher to aim at his heart. "You stop. Stay where you are."

"No, I won't," he said grimly. "You know I love my son. If you pull the trigger and gun me down here, you won't be able to live with it. And he'll see what you've done." All the time O'Brien talked, he steadily advanced toward her.

Her heart pounded and her palms became damp. Now, when she had a gun, was the time to take Michael. This was her only chance. Fortune continued toward her and she stood stiffly watching him, her finger on the trigger.

"Stop or I'll shoot. It'll be your doing. I'll tell him you threatened me."

Without hesitation, his blue gaze cold, Colonel O'Brien took another step toward her. Her pulse roared in her ears, but she could not fire.

With a sweep of his arm he hit the rifle, sending the barrel pointing skyward. His arms wrapped around her as he jerked the weapon from her. His face was inches away. "You can't kill me. You know how much I love him, and you know he's beginning to like me," he said, grinding out the words.

"I wish I could shoot you," she said, feeling tears spill over her cheeks. They stared at each other, both breathing hard. His gaze lowered to her mouth and the moment changed. The fierce struggle became another kind of clash, and she could feel it.

His hard body was pressed against hers. His arms were around her. His eyes were filled with male curiosity. Heat blossomed on her cheeks, and she could barely get her breath.

He bent his head. His arms tightened and his mouth covered hers, his lips firm on hers...with a silky wetness his tongue went into her mouth, an invasion that was more than physical, that seemed to shatter the wall of isolation she had kept around herself...

ATLANTA, an April Onyx release, will be in bookstores in mid-March. In the summer, watch for FALCON'S LAIR, my first Silhouette Desire, an emotionally charged story about a man and woman with clashing goals. WARRIOR MOON, a Zebra historical, will be a summer release.

I love to hear from readers. Write to me at: P.O. Box 780258, Oklahoma City, OK 73118.


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