Linda Winstead Jones
SHE WAS NO LADY– SHE WAS HIS WIFE!Ray Madigan. The sexy cop turned P.I. was tall and lean, with a smile that tripped hearts and shoulders tailor-made for resting a head on. The kind of guy Grace could fall for– had fallen for– in a heartbeat.Her ex-husband. Her friend. Nothing more. Until witnessing a brutal murder put her life on the line. Grace turned to Ray without question, sought shelter in his protective embrace…and wished she' d never left him. Was it just the ever-burning passion, the way he still called her his wife? Or was it something more? Could they truly be meant for each other?
“It’s not fair to ask you to put your business, your whole life, on hold while you baby-sit me. I’m not your responsibility.” Not anymore.
“Yes, you are.” Ray took the two steps that separated them and placed his hands on Grace’s face, forcing her to look up at him. “You came to me,” he said softly. “When you were scared, when you didn’t know where else to go, you came to me. Do you think I can turn my back on you now? Pretend nothing has changed?”
“Nothing has changed,” she said weakly, trying, so hard, to mean what she said.
“Gracie Madigan,” he whispered, his mouth moving toward hers. “Everything has changed, and you damn well know it.”
You’ve loved Beverly Barton’s miniseries THE PROTECTORS since it started, so I know you’ll be thrilled to find another installment leading off this month. Navajo’s Woman features a to-swoon-for Native American hero, a heroine capable of standing up to this tough cop—and enough steam to heat your house. Enjoy!
A YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY continues with bestselling author Linda Turner’s The Enemy’s Daughter. This story of subterfuge and irresistible passion—not to mention heart-stopping suspense—is set in the Australian outback, and I know you’ll want to go along for the ride. Ruth Langan completes her trilogy with Seducing Celeste, the last of THE SULLIVAN SISTERS. Don’t miss this emotional read. Then check out Karen Templeton’s Runaway Bridesmaid, a reunion romance with a heroine who’s got quite a secret. Elane Osborn’s Which Twin? offers a new twist on the popular twins plotline, while Linda Winstead Jones rounds out the month with Madigan’s Wife, a wonderful tale of an ex-couple who truly belong together.
As always, we’ve got six exciting romances to tempt you—and we’ll be back next month with six more. Enjoy!
Leslie J. Wainger
Executive Senior Editor
Linda Winstead Jones
LINDA WINSTEAD JONES
has loved brooks of all kinds for as long as she can remember, spending her leisure hours with Nancy Drew and Miss Marple, or lost in worlds created by writers like Margaret Mitchell and Robert Heinlein. After years as an avid reader she decided to try her hand at writing her own story. Since 1994 she’s been publishing historical and fantasy romance, winning the Colorado Romance Writers’ Award of Excellence for her 1996 time-travel story, Desperado’s Gold. With the publication of Bridger’s Last Stand, her first book for Silhouette Intimate Moments, Linda stepped into the exciting arena of contemporary romance.
At home in Alabama, she divides her time between her husband, three sons, two dogs, reading whatever she can get her hands on and writing romance.
For my brother Tom,
who introduced me to Lyle Lovett’s music
and even graciously loaned me a few CDs. Thanks.
Now might be a good time to tell you—
you’re not getting them back.
The effect of a Ray Madigan grin could be devastating on the unprepared female. Grace popped a potato chip into her mouth as she watched him smile at the waitress and ask for a refill of his coffee and a piece of lemon icebox pie. Darn it, he should be older, slower, less attractive than she remembered. How else was she supposed to get him out of her system once and for all?
Not a speck of gray marred the honey-toned softness of his light brown hair. She knew plenty of almost-thirty-four-year-old men who had a liberal dusting of white around the edges, or the beginnings of male-pattern baldness. Not Ray. Just a little bit too long, a mixture of wavy dark blond and golden brown strands curled at his neck and over his ears.
He apparently hadn’t gained a pound in the past six years, either. In fact, he might’ve lost a couple. Tall and lean with wide shoulders tailor-made for resting a head upon, he looked just as she remembered; too good-looking for his own good and tempting as hell, darn his hide.
These days, Ray always wore the same uniform: a T-shirt, a plaid or checkered button-up shirt over that tee, blue jeans and well-worn leather work boots. He wore the loose shirt, she knew, to conceal the gun he tucked in the waistband at his spine.
No, nothing had changed. Ray played the good ol’ boy flawlessly, when it suited him. To the casual observer he looked like a hundred other rednecks interested in nothing more than a good time, a faithful truck and a six-pack of beer. They didn’t always see the spark of intelligence in his eyes, the way he watched everything and listened to every word. Grace saw, though. She always had.
His eyes had always done her in.
As the waitress walked away Ray planted his eyes on Grace once again. She did her best to appear calm and uninterested. Unaffected. Casual to the point of aloof.
“So,” he said, stirring a single pack of sugar into his coffee. “How’s Dr. Doolittle treating you these days?”