Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Wild at Heart (Healing Harts #4) by T.J. Kline - Blog Tour, Guest Post, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway

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Wild at Heart
Healing Harts #4
T.J. Kline
Released February 9th, 2016
Avon Impulse

Sometimes the place you’re trying to run from is exactly where your heart needs to be…

Bailey Hart has never felt like she measures up to her cousins at Heart Fire Ranch. It doesn’t help that her rocker attitude has made her a black sheep in her small town. So when her band gets their big break in Los Angeles, “Wild Hart” can’t run fast enough…If only there weren’t so many reasons to stay.

After a harrowing stint in the Oakland Police Department, sheriff’s deputy Chase McKee has returned home a hero, and yet he feels anything but. And when he finds out Bailey might be leaving for good, the feelings he’s always harbored for his best friend’s cousin just won’t stay hidden. He knows she wants to get the heck out of Dodge, but he’s hoping to show her where she really belongs—with him.

Will this Wild Hart turn her back on love, or will she realize her heart really belongs closer to home?

Chase picked up on the roar of the engine long before the motorcycle actually came into view. Reaching for the radar gun, he aimed it in the direction of the sound.
Ninety-two miles per hour. Did this guy have a death wish?
There were far too many twists and turns ahead on the highway to warrant that kind of speed, even for one of the locals. He tossed the gun to the seat and dropped the car into gear, pulling onto the two-lane highway as the bike came into view. He’d no more tapped the gas on the cruiser when the motorcycle blazed past him in a midnight-blue streak. He flipped on his lights and siren and the bike immediately slowed as the rider glanced backward before pulling onto the shoulder.
At least he has some respect for the law, he thought acerbically as he stopped behind the motorcycle and ran the plates.
The registered owner’s name came up on his computer screen and his eyes shot back to the rider.
“Damn it,” he muttered, rolling his shoulders back and preparing for the battle he had no doubt was coming. Chase rolled his eyes and climbed out of the vehicle with a sigh of resignation. Crossing his arms, he greeted the most beautiful woman—and the biggest troublemaker—he’d ever met as she slid her helmet off her head and brushed stray hairs back into her low honey-colored ponytail.
“Funny seeing you here, Bailey. When did you get this thing, and are you trying to kill yourself with it?”
She turned her dazzling pearly whites on him, her blue eyes flashing with mischief as she set the helmet on the seat behind her. Chase had been dying to ask her out ever since his return to town almost two years ago but she had no idea and, unfortunately, he needed to keep it that way. Her cousin Justin was one of his best friends, and if he knew Chase thought of Bailey as anything other than Justin’s “little sister,” Chase would probably have to arrest his friend for assaulting a police officer. Not to mention that he’d need to check himself into the hospital. It was better this way. He wasn’t emotionally stable enough to offer anyone more than a few meaningless dates and, while Bailey had a reputation of blowing through guys the way a gambler blew through singles, it would never be enough for him. Bailey was trouble, but she was the best kind of trouble, the kind that made you want to return again and again.
The truth was, he’d had a thing for Bailey as long as he could remember. At first it had started with helping Justin protect her from other kids at school, bullies who picked on the littlest Hart. But he’d watched her grow up, too fast, into a blue-eyed beauty as wild as the pastures of Heart Fire Ranch. She’d somehow managed to keep up with her cousins, including Justin’s football buddies, never one to be shown up just because she was a girl. Bailey was always the first one to jump from the rope swing into the river, the first to take off in a horse race, and last to make an excuse for the stupid stunts they’d done growing up. Unfortunately, as far as she was concerned, he was nothing but Justin’s straightlaced friend who bailed her out, both literally and figuratively, and a verbal sparring partner when she was bored.
“Just picked it up last week.” Her fingers ran lovingly over the blue gas tank between her thighs, and he felt his body immediately react. He stifled the response. “I guess I’m still getting used to how much power it has.”
“Ya think?” He couldn’t help but chuckle at her understatement as he clicked the top of his pen and started writing out a speeding ticket. “I need your license and registration.”
“Aw, come on, Chase. Really?” She bit her lower lip, looking up at him from under her thick, dark lashes, and he felt the heat of desire trickle down his chest and center low in his belly. “I’ll slow down. I swear.”
“And you’ll never do it again, right?” He didn’t believe her for a second. Everyone knew Bailey’s reputation as the wild child of the Hart family. She didn’t just march to the beat of her own drum, she conducted the entire orchestra to a tune of her design. He held out a hand, waiting for her to retrieve the items for him.
“Great! This is the last thing I needed today, you know,” she grumbled as she reached for her paperwork in the storage compartment. “I’m already late.”
“At this rate, you’ll kill yourself before you ever get where you’re headed.” Chase bit back a grin. “Late for what?”
“Nothing. I’ll just call and reschedule.” She glared at him for the briefest of moments before her eyes turned innocent. “You’re going to keep this between us, right?”
Chase didn’t even bother to look up from the ticket form he was filling out. “What you really want to know is whether I’m going to tell Justin.”
He saw her shrug one shoulder in his peripheral vision. “I mean, I don’t really care if you do, I just don’t want to hear him bitching at me more than he already does. You know how he gets, and that’s the last thing Julia needs to hear in her condition.”
“How’s Julia doing?” he asked, glancing at her. “I haven’t seen her since the trial.” He’d been the arresting officer when Julia’s ex-boyfriend had kidnapped her, and Chase had testified at his trial. He’d seen Dylan, several times during various calls since he was working as a paramedic in town now, but he hadn’t run into Julia recently.
“She’s good. At least, as good as someone whose due date passed a few weeks ago can be,” she clarified. “You know, you should come by for dinner tonight. I’m fixing enchiladas for them. We’re hoping the spicy food will put Jules into labor. There’ll be plenty if you want to stop by.”
A flirtatious smile spread over her full lips and her eyes sparkled like sapphires. Chase felt the sizzle of heat come to life again. If he didn’t know her better, he’d think she was flirting. That was the last thing he needed right now. He turned the pad toward her and handed her the pen, indicating she should sign the line. She stared up at him expectantly, practically batting her eyelashes.
Chase cocked his head to the side and gave her a lopsided grin. “Plying me with dinner isn’t going to get you out of a ticket, Bailey.”
Her eyes narrowed as he tapped the pad again. Bailey jerked it from his hand and scribbled her name, slapping the pen against it irritably when she finished. He ripped her copy of the citation from the pad and handed it back to her with the other documents. “You do realize trying to bribe an officer is a felony, right?”
She cocked a brow at him as she slid her helmet back over her head and slipped her sunglasses on, starting the engine. “Who said anything about bribing you? Maybe I was trying to poison you.”
Chase couldn’t help but laugh as she eased the bike back onto the road. “Murder One is a felony, too,” he yelled after her.
Damn, that woman could turn him on faster than she did that bike.

I loved Bailey and Chase's story!  It seemed like everyone in town knew they belonged together except for the two of them. Of course, with both of them being stubborn and convinced they were not what the other person needed, they've spent years avoiding their feelings for each other. Bailey feels like she doesn't fit in with the rest of the Harts, and thinks the only way to be who she is without having people gossip about her is to pursue a singing career in LA. Chase lives with guilt over his partner's death and doesn't think he can give Bailey all she needs emotionally. Chase knows he should let Bailey go, but he works on trying to convince her to stay. Instead of giving her reasons to stay, he seems to push her further away. There is not doubt about their feelings for each other even as they seem to grow further apart. Sweet, sexy and emotional romance and a great add to the series. I loved the first two books of the series, wasn't as crazy about third book, but this one is right up there as a favorite. Can't wait to read Gage's story and I'm really curious about what Blake is hiding!

I received an ARC via Edelweiss for the purpose of an honest review. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own.

Why Good Guys Love Wild Women

I remember growing up and wondering why all the good guys always seemed to go for the “wild” girls? Being a less-than-wild girl myself, I always felt like I was missing out, until I realized there are a few things about those wild women we can all incorporate into our lives, things that will help men find us all irresistible. Here’s just a few of them:
1)   Genuineness

A woman who isn’t afraid to be who she really feels she is inside exudes a confidence that can’t be shaken. When you know what you want, you’re not afraid to take any measures you need to in order to get it. You’re also not going to be swayed by the opinions of others. You know who you are and you’re not afraid for others to see it. If they don’t like it, then screw them.

2)   Spontaneity

Every wild woman can live her life in scheduled regimen, when she wants to, but she’s always going to keep you guessing and, eventually, surprise you when you least expect it. Just because she’s supposed to be at work today doesn’t mean she’s not going to take a mental health day once in a while. Just because she’s wearing a straight-laced suit for the office, doesn’t mean she’s not wearing some sexy-as-hell lingerie underneath for later.

3)   Living in the moment

With her spontaneity, a wild woman is going to live for every moment and in each moment, as it happens. She’s not going to worry about what tomorrow will bring because she’s confident she can tackle whatever it is when and if it happens. As a result, she laughs, plays, sings, dances, parties, takes walks in the rain and enjoys her life, no matter what lemons might be thrown at her.

4)   Independence

A wild woman doesn’t need anyone to make her whole. She might want a significant other but it’s on her terms. (See confidence above.) She will enjoy the company of others but she’s just as comfortable alone which also means she doesn’t need to be coddled and entertained by a man. She won’t care if he does things with his friends because she’s got her own places she wants to be. Maybe she’ll even let him tag along.

5)   Adventurous

Spontaneity doesn’t need to be confined to any one area of life. A weekend with no plans? Great! That means she’s ready to rent a sports car and drive up the coast with no idea where she’s headed until she gets there. Skateboarding? Sure, she’ll give it a try. Tailgating? Never done it but why not? A wild woman has a sense of adventure and seeks out new things to try, even if it’s out of her comfort zone. Life is meant to be lived and she’s going to spend her days doing just that.
Not every woman is born “wild” but we can all nurture that wild woman inside. Maybe even learn a little from her and let her out on occasion.

T. J. Kline was raised competing in rodeos and rodeo queen competitions since the age of 14, She has thorough knowledge of the sport as well as the culture involved. She has had several articles about rodeo published in the past in small periodicals as well as a more recent how-to article for RevWriter. She is also an avid reader and book reviewer for both Tyndale and Multnomah.

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1 comment:

  1. Lovely review. Thank you for hosting WILD AT HEART today!

    Crystal, Tasty Book Tours