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Excerpt: Lone Heart Pass by Jodi Thomas

Where family bonds are made and broken, and where young love sparks as old flames grow dim, Ransom Canyon is ready to welcome—and shelter—those who need it 

With a career and a relationship in ruins, Jubilee Hamilton is left reeling from a fast fall to the bottom. The run-down Texas farm she's inherited is a far cry from the second chance she hoped for, but it and the abrasive foreman she's forced to hire are all she's got. 

Every time Charley Collins has let a woman get close, he's been burned. So Lone Heart ranch and the contrary woman who owns it are merely a means to an end, until Jubilee tempts him to take another risk—to stop resisting the attraction drawing them together despite all his hard-learned logic. 

Desperation is all young Thatcher Jones knows. And when he finds himself mixed up in a murder investigation, his only protection is the shelter of a man and woman who—just like him—need someone to trust.

Excerpt

On the mile ride to the pass, Lauren and Thatcher stayed on either side of Jubilee giving her pointers but she bounced up and down all the way.  Charley had a feeling her shoulders wouldn’t be the only thing red tonight.
                As they entered the pass, Charley looped a lead rope from her horse to his saddle horn.  Within minutes they left the morning sun and rode into the cool twilight darkness of the passage.  The walls on either side shot toward heaven and the slice of light allowed in seemed to slide down the rock showing off the beauty of the stone that stood silent against the weather for a million years.
                When anyone spoke, the words echoed off the passage walls bouncing back and forth like dueling chimes.  
                Every time he glanced back, Jubilee looked terrified.  Her hands had a death grip on the saddle horn, her eyes wide.  But her back was straight and she didn’t cry out or demand they stop.
                “You’re doing fine,” he offered, but she didn’t look at him.
                Lauren’s calm voice whispered from behind them.  “I remember how frightened I was when I rode through this pass for the first time.  The night was cold, but I wanted to see the moon cross the opening above.  There is a fairy legend that if you see the full moon while in the pass your heart’s wish will come true.  Only that night I was too scared to wish for anything even though my Pop was with me.”
                From behind her, Thatcher added with a laugh.  “I’d be scared if the sheriff was with me right now.  I get the feeling he’s worrying his brain trying to come up with one more thing I’m doing wrong.”

About the Author

A fifth-generation Texan, JODI THOMAS sets the majority of her novels in her home state. With a degree in Family Studies, Thomas is a marriage and family counselor by education, a background that enables her to write about family dynamics. Honored in 2002 as a Distinguished Alumni by Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Thomas enjoys interacting with students on the West Texas A & M University campus, where she currently serves as Writer in Residence. When not working on a novel or inspiring students to pursue a writing career, Thomas enjoys traveling with her husband, Tom, renovating a historic home they bought in Amarillo, and "checking up" on their two grown sons.

Connect with Jodi: Website | Facebook | Twitter

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