Exciting times around here!
Tomorrow I hop a plane to New Orleans for the RT Booklovers Convention. Anyone who’s been there knows how crazy that convention can be. Stick it in the middle of a city known for insanity and you can just imagine the kind of week I’m in for! I hope to see some of you there. For those who can’t make it, you can follow along with the fun on Twitter at #RT2014 .
Then, as if that weren’t enough, it’s only one week until the release of THROWN. This next Studs in Spurs series novel has been a long time coming but it’s finally almost here and I couldn’t be more excited. The hero is young bull rider Skeeter, who fans will recognize from the past books in the series. AND I have exciting news…readers won’t have to wait for the next Studs in Spurs book, CHAMPION, nearly as long. Samhain was able to slip it into an open slot for late this September rather than making you all wait.
For those of you who enjoy a more mature hero and heroine, CHAMPION will feature Skeeter’s bull riding teacher and his mom and you’ll meet them both in the excerpt from THROWN below. Enjoy! Cat Johnson
THROWN (Studs in Spurs, Book 6) by Cat Johnson
This ain’t their first rodeo…but there are a lot of other firsts they can experience together .
Skeeter Anderson was born to ride bulls. He bypassed college to shoot straight to the top of the elite pro tour, but lately all he can seem to do is hit the dirt. Unwilling to admit his career might be over at twenty-one, Skeeter brainstorms a bull-riding boot camp with his buddies, which will put him closer to a girl who’s caught his eye—a stock contractor’s daughter called Riley.
Riley Davis lives and breathes bulls. Since her mother’s death, she’s been her father’s business partner as well as the apple of his eye—until a coronary rips him out of her life. Now, at nineteen, she must find a way to hang onto the family business.
When Skeeter hears about Riley’s dad, he drives straight to Mississippi to lend her a hand, his buddies hot on his heels. Suddenly Riley has more help than she can shake a stick at, and an attraction to Skeeter that’s heating up by the minute…
Warning: Contains cowboy yoga, cowboys in love, and a romance that hits so hard and fast, it makes being thrown from a bull look like a friendly game of hopscotch.
EXCERPT from THROWN (rated G)
10 Years Ago
Glen walked over with the bull rope that had fallen off the bull right after Skeeter had. He looped it over the rail and shook his head. “Damned if he don’t remind me of you, Coop.”
“Oh, really?” Cooper cocked a brow.
“Yup. You get that same look in your eye after a ride.” The man grinned.
As Glen walked away in the direction of the barn, Cooper’s gaze shot to Skeeter. “If that’s true, then God help you, boy. You’re bound to have a tough life ahead of you.”
Skeeter could handle it. His life hadn’t been a piece of cake so far anyway. But the life of a professional bull rider like Cooper? He was ready for whatever that threw at him.
The sound of gravel crunching on the driveway caught Skeeter’s attention. He turned to see his mother’s car inch its way toward the ring. He hardly held himself in check so he didn’t go running toward her. The only thing preventing him was that he didn’t want to act like a little kid in front of Cooper.
She seemed to take an eternity to park and then walk toward him. She stepped carefully through the dust and the sparse grass. Her waitress uniform looked so out of place next to the practice pen it might have made Skeeter laugh if he hadn’t been so excited, but his mom didn’t seem to notice or care that she didn’t fit in here dressed like that.
Cooper must have noticed her uniform though. He was staring at her as she made her way from the parked car to the ring.
Skeeter jumped to explain. “My mom works at the diner weeknights after her shift at the hospital is over. She works there on Saturdays too. That’s why she’s wearing that uniform.”
“That’s a lot of work for one lady.” Cooper shot Skeeter a sideways look. “What’s your daddy do for a living?”
“I don’t know. He doesn’t live around here.”
After a second, Cooper nodded. His gaze shifted, moving to Skeeter’s mom and then back to Skeeter. “There ain’t nothing wrong with having two jobs and working hard, son. Except I suppose it doesn’t leave her much time for herself, now does it?”
“Sure, it does. She has Sunday mornings off. We go to church and then she and the ladies there have coffee and cookies together while the kids go play outside.”
Cooper nodded again, but by then Skeeter’s mother was close enough he could tell her about his ride. “Mom! Cooper said I did great and I can ride again tomorrow.”
She raised one brow. “Is that so? And it’s proper to call him Mr. Holbrook.”
Cooper grinned. “That’s fine, ma’am. Cooper works for me.”
“As long as it’s all right with you.” His mother didn’t smile even though Cooper was smiling at her. In fact, she looked a little sad as she looked at Skeeter. “But I’m not sure about another lesson so soon.”
No! She couldn’t say that.
“I need to keep practicing if I’m gonna get good.” When she pressed her lips together in a move Skeeter had seen many times, his heart sank. She was going to say no. It was no use, but he had to try anyway. “Please.”
She drew in a slow breath.
“Ma’am. If I might step in here for a second?”
Finally letting out that big breath, she glanced at Cooper. “Sure.”
“I could use someone to help me out here. If you dropped him off for a few hours a couple of days a week, he could do a little work around the place and then I could get him on a few bulls. It would only be when I’m around, of course. I do a lot of traveling, but if I’m here, he’s welcome.”
She bit her lower lip before she nodded. “That would be real nice of you, Mr. Holbrook.”
“Nah, he’d be doing me the favor helping out. And it’s Cooper, remember?”
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