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Summer reads begin in June!

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Two determined souls plumb the dark depths of the past in order to forge a brighter future--together.


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Excerpt of Summer at Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth

Purchase


Signet
June 2013
On Sale: June 4, 2013
Featuring: Foster; Shelby
384 pages
ISBN: 0451239822
EAN: 9780451239822
Kindle: B009KUX83M
Paperback / e-Book
Add to Wish List

Romance Contemporary

"Jesse Hayworth has just become one of my favorite authors ... Warm, witty, and with a great deal of heart, SUMMER AT MUSTANG RIDGE is an instant classic." NYT and USAToday bestselling author Kristan Higgins

"SUMMER AT MUSTANG RIDGE is a superb read with all the elements that I love in a book: realistic characters, a gorgeous setting, humor, a touching subplot, and a beautiful love story." NYT bestselling author Catherine Anderson

"Hayworth’s print debut, the second in her Mustang Ridge series, is a beautiful love story expressed in simple, elegant language about a vulnerable mother, her troubled child, and an enigmatic cowboy who has been scarred by love. With a solid plot and a host of sympathetic, genuine characters, Hayworth takes her time weaving a tale of love and healing, all set against the beautiful rural backdrop of the Wyoming mountains. This heartwarming story is a keeper." Romantic Times Magazine

Also by Jesse Hayworth:

Coming Home to Mustang Ridge, August 2015
Paperback / e-Book
Harvest at Mustang Ridge, August 2014
Paperback / e-Book
Winter At Mustang Ridge, February 2014
Paperback / e-Book
Summer at Mustang Ridge, June 2013
Paperback / e-Book
Sunset at Keyhole Canyon, May 2013
e-Book

Excerpt of Summer at Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth


"Okay, no pressure. We're just here to have fun. Ready?" Shelby paused with her hand on a pair of saloon–style swinging doors to grin down at Lizzie, hoping her daughter couldn't see the nerves. "Me neither, but let's do it anyway."

She pushed through into the dining hall of the ranch, which continued the Western theme from the log–style exterior. Thirty or so men and women wearing crunchy–new denim and unscuffed boots milled around long picnic tables, creating a cocktail party's worth of noise. A banner over the huge stone fireplace proclaimed: HOWDY THERE, FILLIES AND STUDS. WELCOME TO SINGLES' WEEK AT MUSTANG RIDGE!

The moment the doors banged shut behind Shelby, a dozen or so pairs of eyes gave her an up–and–down, making her very aware that her black pants, pinstriped jacket and chunky boots probably said "straight from Boston" more than they did "we're comfortable for a long car trip." Then the doors swung again and her daughter came in behind her, and the eyes shifted away.

"Here!" A twentysomething blonde bounced up to them. She was wearing a green polo shirt embroidered with the Mustang Ridge logo on one side and her name—Tipper—on the other. She looked momentarily confused by Lizzie, but then shrugged and thrust two "Howdy, my name is ____!" tags at them, along with a Sharpie. "You guys will want these!"

"But we're not—" Shelby began, but then broke off because Tipper was already bopping over to her next tagless victim. Shrugging, Shelby offered Lizzie the stickers. "You want to fill them out for us? No? Okay, I'll do it." She wrote "Lizzie's mom" on one and "Shelby's kid" on the other, and stuck them in place. "That should take care of it, but stay close to me."

"Hello, ladies," said a voice from behind them.

The guy gained points by holding a soda, but lost them by having added another exclamation point to his name, so the tag on his purple rodeo shirt read: Howdy, my name is Brad!! Having gotten her attention, he leaned in. "I've got a confession to make—it's my first time. How about you?" An eyebrow wiggle lost him another point.

Not that Shelby was interested enough to add up the pluses and minuses, but keeping score was an occupational hazard, as was the propensity to turn everything into a slogan. Tired of being single? Try our new and improved Brad!! He comes complete with a one–bedroom condo, convertible and new caps. Ex wife sold separately.

She gave him a half–watt smile. "I've never been to a dude ranch before, if that's what you're asking. And I'm not really—"

"Everyone?" an amplified voice broke in. "If I could have your attention?" A pretty, late twenties blonde climbed up on a low stage beneath the banner. "Welcome to Mustang Ridge! We've got an incredible week of riding, roping and mingling planned for you. So please have a seat, and we'll get started!"

Shelby nodded to an empty table. "Let's sit near the back." Lizzie hesitated and shot a long look out the door, making Shelby grin. "Sorry, kiddo, orientation first. But as soon as we're done in here, I'll take you out to the barn."

It was why they were there, after all.

***

"Why, hello, aren't you a big one?" a woman's voice purred through the barn. "Then again, I heard that everything's bigger up here in Wyoming."

Foster finished squirting antibiotics into Loco's cracked heel and looked up to find a blonde standing just inside the double doors, with generous curves stacked inside brand–new Wranglers and a snap–studded pink shirt that looked like the top fastener could go at any moment, and might take out an eye when it did. He stifled a sigh—play nice with the guests, you're part of the local flavor—and said, "No, ma'am. I believe that's Texas."

He wasn't all that big, either—maybe six foot, one ninety, wearing his usual "it's my day off" clothes: a battered black felt Stetson, plain T–shirt, faded jeans and scarred ropers. As local flavor went, he wasn't much, but the blonde was looking to bag a cowboy in her first five minutes off the airport shuttle.

She sidled in, skirted a pile of manure like it was a diamondback, and sashayed over to lean against the wall beside him. Which just went to show that she had zero horse sense, because that put her right in the line of fire if Loco leaped sideways or swung a kick.

Granted, Loco was anything but loco. But still.

She leaned in too close, giving Foster a good look at the local topography—a pair of nicely rounded breasts inside pink lace that would itch like crazy once she was out riding, with all the sweat and dust, and the bouncing around that beginners were prone to.

"What are you doing?" she asked prettily. "Is he hurt?"

He let Loco's hoof down and shifted the gelding away from her. "It's more preventative maintenance."

"Like a lube job?"

Ohh–kay. "You're going to miss orientation."

"How about you give me a private tour?"

Not even with someone else's privates. "Sorry, ma'am. Ranch policy." Not really, but it was a handy excuse.

Her eyes picked up a gleam. "I wouldn't tell."

"Go on now, and join the party."

She pouted, but then blew him a kiss and flounced away, ruining her exit—or improving it, depending—by stepping squarely in the manure. She skidded and squeaked, but kept up her sexy wiggle all the way out of the barn.

Moments later, Foster heard a muttered curse and some scuffing noises outside, as she scraped her boots.

Chuckling, he moved around to Loco's other side, ran a hand down the mustang's shoulder and touched the back of his fetlock. "How's this shoe doing? Sounded to me like it might be coming loose."

And that wasn't the only thing, from the looks of it.

Singles week. Yeesh.

Excerpt from Summer at Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth
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