Hell or High Water (Lost and Found, Inc. #1)
by Jerrie Alexander
Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Etopia Press
Release Date: February 22, 2013
Heat Level: Steamy
Word Count: 80,000
When ex-SEAL Nate Wolfe learns a woman from his past is in danger, nothing will stop him from protecting her. Not even her.
Dallas Child Protection Services Investigator Kay Taylor doesn’t want or need Nate in her life. But he doesn’t seem to understand the word no. He seems to also have forgotten the brand he left on her heart.
When Kay is taken and sold to a monster, the devil himself couldn’t stop Nate from doing whatever it takes to find her…but will he be in time?
Warning: This title is intended for readers over the age of 18 as it contains adult sexual situations and/or adult language, and may be considered offensive to some readers.
Nate picked the lock on Kaycie’s apartment and eased inside. The minute he stepped through the door the hair on the back of his neck rose. She wasn’t home, so why the sizzle of nerves? He shook it off.
It wasn’t difficult to convince himself that looking around was purely tactical. Necessary to ensure he could protect her.
Tyrell and Marcus would arrive in an hour. The three of them were having an intervention with Kaycie when she got home. She’d protest him getting involved, but until he stopped the threat against her she’d travel with an armed bodyguard.
The open floor plan of her small apartment lumped the kitchen, dining and living area into one big room and made for easy defending. The solid wall of windows troubled him, but he could close the blinds, effectively eliminating the possibility of someone getting a clear shot. He double-checked the locks on the windows. He shoved his fingers through his hair, tying it off his face.
The room at the end of the hall had to be Kaycie’s bedroom. He moved silently, stopped just inside the doorway, and breathed in the air where she slept. Sensible Kaycie, the room wasn’t elaborate or fancy. No luxurious king-size bed; she slept on a queen.
He could make do with a queen. If she was stretched out naked in it. He applied a mental head slap. No complications needed.
Every open space was filled with books, souvenirs, and pictures. He wondered if she’d kept the Saint Jude medallion. Maybe tucked it away in the back of the jewelry box or wrapped in tissue secured in one of those drawers on the dresser. More likely, she’d dropped it in the nearest trashcan the day he left for boot camp.
She deserved a better man, somebody without all his baggage. Somebody who didn’t reach for a weapon at every sound. Somebody who’d always be there for her.
The front door opened and closed, snapping him to the present. Nate froze. His pulse quickened. Not good. He’d let his thoughts wander and missed hearing the lock turn.
Or did Kaycie have an unwelcome visitor?
Other than him.
Keys jangled and Nate released the breath he’d held. Kaycie was home. He stifled a chuckle. Finding him in her apartment would seriously piss her off.
Nate silently moved down the hall. He found her in the kitchen with her back to him. Reaching up, she removed a glass from the shelf, giving him the opportunity he needed. He moved fast, trapping her between the counter with his body, his arms wrapped around, pinning hers to her side.
She screamed and tried to whirl. Wasn’t happening. She stomped where his feet should’ve been. Nice move, but he’d spread his legs out of reach. He leaned in tighter. He wouldn’t hurt her just keep her still. Damn, she’d mastered a few self-defense techniques over the years. He tightened his grip to immobilize her.
Inches from the nape of her neck, he fought an unexpected urge to lean down and test that spot right behind her ear. The sensitive place he used to kiss again and again until she purred.
She tried to butt him with the back of her head. Time to make her aware of who had her pinned.
“Nate, you bastard. Get off me.”
Apparently, she already knew.
“That Glock on your hip is no help if it’s holstered.” He intended to rest his hand on her gun, but instead, and of its own accord, he found the palm of his hand resting on her taut belly.
He stepped back before his erection pressing against her drew her attention. Her fingers wrapped around the butt of the gun.
“Don’t try it,” he warned.
“Get over yourself.” Her tone matched the hate in her eyes. “You really think I care enough about you to shoot you?”
Side note from Victoria: I met Jerrie Alexander when I attended the Dallas conference last year. She was super supportive of me and nice to a stranger aka me. I wish I had time to read this book because this is one classy lady, and I heard an earlier version of chapter one read live. I’ll be buying this book for sure. Thank you again Jerry for being nice to me and let’s start this interview.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be, and why?
From time to time, I think how fun it would be to live on the beach, where we’d swim in warm, clear water every day. Then I think about my family and friends here in Texas. My roots are here and they run too deep to not see the people I love except for once or twice a year.
Sounds good to have deep roots. It’s part of what I don’t like about South Florida, thuogh I do love my family. Have you had other careers before becoming a writer?
I did! I was in logistics for many years. When I retired to concentrate on my writing, I walked away from a ton of pressure. At the time, I was responsible for over three million square feet of distribution centers. All of them in California! While I love that state and the people, I was away from home a lot.
Traveling must have been hard. I never asked you this in person, though I had a sneaking suspicion. What genre(s) do you write in and why?
Romantic suspense is my genre. Dark and gritty. I love creating the suspense and danger that my hero and heroine have to work their way through.
The dark mind of bad guys is not where I like being, but you have the voice for it. What is your next project and when will it be released?
HELL or HIGH WATER is book 1 in The Lost and Found series. No firm release date yet, but we’re hoping late April. NO TIME TO KILL is the second book and I’ve submitted it to my editor.
That’s so exciting. Woot. Woot. Waiting can suck though, so we keep on writing, I suppose. Where do you get the ideas for your stories?
A lot of my ideas come right out of the newspaper. HELL or HIGH WATER focuses on a human trafficking ring. I’d read an article about how these ring move into the area when there’s a big event scheduled. We’d just had the Super Bowl and the police were taking down one ring after another. That got me to doing the ‘what if’ in my head.
Woah. Human trafficking is dangerous and I think Miami is a hub for the girls getting sent overseas. I try not to look for those dark places, though. How does your family feel about your writing career?
They are super supportive. My husband has always told me I could do anything I set my mind to. And our daughter tells everybody they should buy books.
You are super lucky woman. Besides your daughter, what did you do to promote your work?
Promotion, to me at least, is the toughest part of a writer’s job. I love social networking and I enjoy boasting about other people’s books but find it hard to do mine. 🙂 I love blog tours. They give me the opportunity to meet new people. Whether they are readers of my genre or not, they’re interesting, and I enjoy the communication. Conferences like Readers & ‘ritas where the weekend is all about the reader is great fun.
That sounds like a good conference. I’ll be looking it up now. I do love visiting Texas. All the people I know from there are just darn good souls. Do you have critique partners?
The best. She’s my Jethro Gibbs. She has my back, keeps me in line, and smacks me on the back of the head if I get out of line. Seriously, a kind, but brutally honest critique partner like mine is invaluable.
So some authors seem to write as their voice to the world. Others tend to see it as a fantasy world. I love asking this question. How likely are people you meet to end up in your next book?
None! Never! 🙂 Well, at least none of my villains. I don’t want to hang out with them. And I pray none of my friends ever have those kind of problems to overcome.
Smart woman. Villians are bad people, especially those raping and selling women. Do you have a view in your writing space? What does your space look like?
We converted the formal dining room into an office. My husband has a tiny corner and the rest is full of my desk, books, swag, printouts, notebooks, and folders…all mine. He hung a 4 by 8 ft white board down one wall for me to use for planning. A big window is at my back so the lighting is perfect.
Sounds much fancier and nicer than my multi colored recliner. What genres are you drawn to as a reader?
I love romantic suspense. Linda Howard, Cherry Adair, Lena Diaz, Allison Brennan, and Donnell Bell are a few I read. But you’ll find a contemporary or historical romance in my hand from time to time. I enjoy reading Barb Han and Elizabeth Hoyt.
All are good writers. Do you or have you belonged to a writing organization? Which one? Have the helped you with your writing? How?
I joined RWA, North Texas Romance Writers, and Kiss of Death a little over five years ago. It was the smartest move I’d made in years. Each has helped me immeasurably. The RWA provides information, classes and support. NT, my home chapter, does all that and more. The members are loving and supportive. KOD, an on line chapter, well, I can’t say enough about them. They are so helpful, supportive and fun. Visiting with them once a year at the RWA conference has always been a treat. All three organizations have helped me learn and grow as an author.
I visited your chapter for their conference last year. I am a member of the Florida girls, but y’all had it together. I’m so glad you agreed to this interview. I hope this book sells big. I’ll be buying it, which is a big deal because running this blog means I had the option to read for free. I can’t wait.
About the Author
A student of creative writing in her youth, Jerrie set aside her passion when life presented her with a John Wayne husband, and two wonderful children. A career in logistics offered her the opportunity to travel to many beautiful locations in America, and she revisits them in her romantic suspense novels.
But the characters went with her, talked to her, and insisted she share their dark, sexy stories with others. She writes alpha males and kick-ass women who weave their way through death and fear to emerge stronger because of, and on occasion in spite of, their love for each other. She likes to torture people, make them suffer, and if they’re strong enough, they live happily ever after.
The author of THE GREEN-EYED DOLL, THE LAST EXECUTION, and her latest release, HELL or HIGH WATER, Book 1 in the Lost and Found, Inc. Series, Jerrie lives in Texas, loves sunshine, children’s laughter, sugar (human and granulated), and researching for her heroes and heroines.
Connect with Jerrie Alexander
Prize is 1 eBook copy of “Green-Eyed Doll” PLUS “Green-Eyed Doll” and “Hell or High Water” bookmarks. Contest is tour-wide, open internationally and ends Apr 16. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.