Colton Cowboy Hideout: Carla Cassidy
Circumstances often find people in situations that are critical to their needs and at other times might place them in harms way. Wanting to fulfill a dying wish of her late father Matthew Colton, a known serial killer in prison, Josie returns to the Colton Valley Ranch in order to recover a watch that her father wants buried with him when the time comes. Added in he hints that within that watch and where it is found there is something hidden.
Entering the home and meeting the family is quite an experience for Josie as the wife of the man who owns Colton business and is a billionaire baron has a family that most would rather not deal with or claim to even know. Each one Elderidge the father and Whitney his wife has children from previous marriages and three together. Each of their children has his/her own agenda and most are greedy, gossipy and loaded with rich taste. When Josie enters the picture something happens that requires she might not be allowed to leave and return home. Meeting Tanner Grange the Foreman of the ranch he immediately takes to her, takes her out to the tree where she thinks the watch is buried and then the mystery begins. Digging deep within the soil neither hears a man sneak up on them and what happens next sets off a chain of events that causes Josie to get shot. Just who is this man and what does he want? As Tanner tends to her wounds he wants to report it to the sheriff but Josie does not want to bring attention to her and let on about her father. But, circumstances change and Elderidge and Whitney are supposed to attend a charity breakfast except he is gone. That remains a mystery throughout the novel as blood is found in his room, on the boots of a worker in their employ but Eldridge’s body is nowhere to be found.
With the sheriff questioning the family members and getting nowhere he arrests the employer only to learn that the blood on his boots did not match the missing man and what they found was stolen merchandise. Angry that he was not promoted and Tanner was named Foreman he decided to take what was not his in order to make up for his monetary losses. But, there is much more as Tanner decides that Josie remains at the ranch and she instantly becomes a part of this life in more ways than one.
With two young girls to care for he needs a full time nanny and when Josie is shot, and Eldridge is nowhere to be found the nanny feels her chakra is damaged and she needs to go. Brothers fight, no one seems to get along and when Josie is injured and they realize the family might be in danger more security is needed. But, things heat up between Josie and Tanner as his two daughters Leigh and Lily immediately take to Josie and when the nanny leaves she steps right in. Warming up to the girls was easy for her yet having to deal with her feelings for Tanner more difficult as he tries to distance himself but can’t. As the plot develops we meet one of Eldridge’s stepdaughter that befriends Josie. But, Josie has nightmares and hears her mother’s voice in her head as she is reminded of where she spent her life, why she was in foster care and what happened that sent her into the witness protection program. Thinking that the man who threatened her when she saw a murder is no longer a threat and telling Tanner about her past they both realize that this man who shot her might come back and that she is not safe.
Clues arise and the Sheriff is on the case but no one can find the body of the missing man. It’s as if he just vanished but where. But, someone is out to get Josie and although she is safe on the ranch someone manages to break into her room but who and was it the same man? A fast paced novel filled with interesting characters each only concerned about themselves and Fowler Colton deciding that now that his father is gone he will be in charge and no one has anything to say. In fights, gossip, family feuds and one brother Zane running security but worried there are too many new people and one might be a killer. As Josie and Tanner take one-step closer in their relationship something happens that causes him to take two steps or more back.
This is a novel about family disloyalty, distrust, greed, power, hope, love, family promises and one young girls that finds herself in the mix of a huge war within herself to decide to remain at the ranch thinking that Tanner does not really care for her the way she cares for him or leave.
Sometimes we are hasty and when her brother Trevor calls and says that her father has little time left she impulsively goes and packs, takes her suitcase, heads for the tree in order to find the watch. But, fate plays a nasty hand and the killer is right there but will she live to bring that watch to her dying father or will the killer get it? When confronted he feels he earned it and will do anything to get what he thinks belongs to him as Tanner shows up and a fight ensues and the ending will surprise readers. Just who was this man? What really happened to Eldridge? Will they ever find the body? Who will take over the Colton Valley Ranch? Will the family members ever agree on anything? Where will Josie wind up? At the Ranch or will she return home for good? Characters that fit into the plot and are uniquely and vividly described and depicted. A novel that I read in less than two hours because I could not put it down. What is the fate of everyone? Only author Carla Cassidy knows that for sure when she decides to pen another Colton Family Romance.
Fran Lewis: Just review/MJ magazine
Special Bonus: Writing Tips:
How-to Tips for Aspiring Writers
I’m often asked for writing tips by aspiring writers and no matter how the markets change the tips remain the same.
- I would recommend you read in the genre you want to write. Don’t just read for pleasure, be analytical and try to discover what that author is doing successfully.
- I know this sounds silly, but I can’t tell you how many aspiring writers I meet who spend months researching, who talk about the book they’re going to write and they never get around to putting butt in chair and just doing the work.
- Go to workshops to learn craft, take on-line courses to learn techniques to better your writing. Join a writer group. It’s wonderfully affirming to realize you aren’t crazy…you’re a writer and there are other people just like you!
- Be nosy. Become acutely aware of other people when you’re shopping or walking in the park or whatever. A snippet of overheard conversation can be the heart of a new book. Characters are everywhere and I believe most writers are observers who then create.
- Listen to the voices in your head. You aren’t crazy! Sometimes my best scenes arrive in my head before I put them on paper. Your subconscious often does your writing for you if you just listen.
- Write every day. At least for me, writing is like a jealous lover that demands attention. If being a published writer is really what you want, then you should be actively working toward that goal every day. Dreams rarely happen unless you work for them. If you want to be a writer, then work it!