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Wild Rose Ranch Novel
BY JENNIFER RYAN
If you like bad-boy heroes, western settings, and a sexy, sassy heroine you will love Jennifer Ryan’s newest Wild Rose Ranch book! Perfect for fans of Diana Palmer, Linda Lael Miller, and Jodi Thomas.
One minute down-on-his-luck rancher Austin Hubbard slept soundly, the next, a sassy spitfire dumped a pitcher of water on his head and woke him up—in more ways than one. Hired to help him rebuild his ranch, Sonya Tucker ends up helping him put the tattered pieces of his life back together. The capable, all-business accountant is on a mission to get the ranch up and running, but can he convince the temptingly beautiful woman to take a chance on him?
Sonya was dismayed that Austin had lost it all: money, family, respectability. Things she—who’d been raised by her mother at Nevada’s notorious brothel Wild Rose Ranch—only dreamed about. But working with the long, lean cowboy shows her that Austin is honorable to his core. Together they slowly grow to see what the love between them might bring.
But then Austin’s powder keg of a family feud explodes, exposing long-buried secrets, and threatening their new-found love…
About the Book
by Jennifer Ryan
Wild Rose Ranch
November 12, 2019
Editorial Note: Edited for language.
She pressed her lips together and eyed him before the stiffness left her shoulders and they slumped. “I want to get pregnant.” Her lips tilted into a lopsided frown. “We want a baby.”
“We.” For the first time, he saw the diamond ring on her finger. How he’d missed the dime-sized rock, he didn’t know. He’d been too stunned to see her and distracted by her attempted seduction to take in the details that had helped set off that alarm in his mind.
“I’ve been seeing someone. He’s good to me. He loves me and wants to give me everything I ever wanted.” Her eyes pleaded with him to understand. Like it wasn’t personal she loved someone else now.
Despite what happened between them, he wanted her to be happy. “If that’s the case, why the hell are you here cheating on your fiancé?” His stomach soured with the thought of touching someone else’s woman. He didn’t do those kinds of things. He believed in being faithful and telling the truth, even when it hurt and meant the end if you wanted out.
“He wants another child but he had a vasectomy years ago. He had it reversed but the doctors told him his low sperm count would make it difficult to conceive a baby. We talked about alternative ways to get pregnant and he encouraged me to see you.”
IVF. Surrogacy. Sperm donor. Adoption. Take your pick of available options. But send your fiancée to another man?
No man who truly loved his woman would share her with another man.
That alert he got earlier turned into a full-on alarm in his head. His chest tightened with a weight he didn’t want to carry because he suspected where this was going and he didn’t want to believe it. It couldn’t be true.
“We have a history. I always thought we’d make beautiful babies. We’re not together, and things for you haven’t exactly worked out the way you wanted. I’m ovulating. I thought we’d have one last good time.”
“And what? You’d never tell me about the baby?” Every breath made him ache more.
“With the way your life is now, you can’t take on that responsibility or financial burden.”
He didn’t know this callous, calculating woman.
“My fiancé and I would love and care for the baby. He’d want for nothing.” She moved closer and put her hand on his chest. “Please, Austin. You know how much I want this.”
He slapped her hand away. His heart thrashed in his chest and his mind screamed, No. This could not be happening. It couldn’t be as bad as it appeared. But he had to know the full truth and what she’d planned to keep from him as long as she could before it all came out. Because secrets like this always came out.
“Who put that ring on your finger?” His mind screamed, You don’t want to know.
Her gaze dropped to his boots. “We’ve kept our relationship quiet.”
He pointed to her hand. “Astronauts can see that ring from space. You really think you’re being discreet?”
“Austin, who I’m with doesn’t change the fact this is what I want. You don’t have to take responsibility for the child. Ten minutes and your work is done.” A plea filled her eyes. “I know that sounds insensitive, but men get women pregnant all the time and don’t have anything to do with the child.”
She sounded like a lunatic.
“And you think I’m that kind of man.” It hurt that someone would believe that about him.
“I want a baby, Austin. This is the most expedient way to get one. You and I care about each other, which makes this easier. You’re a good guy. You want me to be happy. So please, help me have a baby.”
Despite what she thought of him and the hurtful words, though she really had no idea how much they stung, he did want her to have everything. Maybe some guys would see the upside of having sex with a beautiful woman and walking away. But he would never turn his back on a child the way his father had turned his back on him. That she didn’t see that hurt more.
Surprise filled her eyes, but his rejection didn’t squash her determination. “I’ll pay you.”
The desperate words slammed into him with the force of a knife plunging into his chest. “Not only no, but f**k you. I’m not some stud for hire.” The thought sickened him.
For the first time, he understood how Roxy felt when people accused her of being a prostitute.
“Ten thousand dollars.” She clasped her hands in front of her like she prayed he’d accept. But her desperation spoke of more than her desire to have a child.
She needed him to say yes.
He wouldn’t play Kelly’s whore for any amount of money. And he wondered, like the ring, where she got that kind of cash. “Who is your fiancé?”
She shook her head and backed up a step, too afraid to tell him.
And that’s when the rage exploded inside him as fast as the truth lit up his mind.
He shot forward, tilted her chin up with the tip of his finger, and made her look at him. “Who is it? Say it,” he dared her.
Tears filled her eyes. Her gaze strayed over his shoulder and she whispered, “Your father.” Those two words blasted through his mind and constricted his chest. He couldn’t breathe for trying to contain the fury burning inside him.
Before he lost his head, he released Kelly and turned his back on her.
His own father had taken up with his ex-girlfriend and wanted Austin to sire a child that he’d raise. The thought turned his stomach and sent bile to the back of his throat.
Over my dead body.
“He wants my child.” He spit out the vile words.
“You two are so stubborn. You won’t sell. He refuses to leave his estate or the companies to anyone but family.”
“So long as that family isn’t me.”
“Do you blame him?”
Austin spun around to face her. “Yes! Why do I have to bend and give up what’s mine? Why do I have to do what he says because he demands it? Why can’t I have what’s mine and make something of it? I busted my ass working for him. I did everything he wanted from the time I was a child to running the operations. But this one thing he can’t let go of. Why?”
Kelly held her hands out and let them drop to the sides of her thighs. “I don’t know. I tried to change his mind, but he won’t let it go.”
“Instead, he doubles down on humiliating me by seducing my ex-girlfriend, then sends her here to fuck me for my baby. He hasn’t taken enough, he wants my child, too!” Anger stung his throat as those ridiculous words burst out his mouth.
“The child would be his grandson. He’d get everything.”
“And that’s all that matters. You get what you want. He gets what he wants. What about what I f**king want?” He yelled so loudly he was sure the rickety rafters overhead vibrated with his rage the way his whole body shook with it. “I would never—EVER!—give up my child. Anyone who thinks that of me doesn’t know the real me. And that includes you.” He took a menacing step toward her, his body rigid and begging for a fight it wouldn’t get. “How could you come here with his ring on your finger and think I’d ever want to touch you, let alone have a baby with you? I don’t even want to look at you. Get out.”
She reached for him again, but he stepped back. The thought of her ever touching him again sent a shiver of revulsion through him.
This time he was sure his fury would bring down the roof.
She spun on the heels of the boots he’d bought her, her skirt flaring out, showing off a lot of thigh. She’d come here hoping he’d knock her up without a second thought and she’d walk out with his child and raise it with his father.
He didn’t think Kelly or his father could hurt him more than they had when they abandoned him, but this twisted deception they’d tried to pull over on him hit hard and cut deep.
He waited for the sound of her car to fade before he walked out of the barn and headed for his pathetic bed on the porch of the hoarder house he couldn’t stand to go in and the bottle he’d left under the cot and hadn’t touched in two weeks.
He needed a drink.
There might not be enough whiskey in Montana to make him forget what just happened.
His life couldn’t get any worse than this. Right?
Tour Wide Giveaway
To celebrate the release of RESTLESS RANCHER by Jennifer Ryan, we’re giving away one paperback copy of Dirty Little Secret by Jennifer Ryan!
GIVEAWAY TERMS & CONDITIONS: Open to US shipping addresses only. One winner will receive a paperback copy of Dirty Little Secret by Jennifer Ryan. This giveaway is administered by Pure Textuality PR on behalf of Avon Romance. Giveaway ends 11/30/2019 @ 11:59pm EST. Avon Romance will send the winning copy out to the winner directly. CLICK HERE TO ENTER!
About Author Jennifer Ryan…
JENNIFER RYAN is the New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of The Hunted, McBride, and Montana Men series. She writes suspenseful contemporary romances with outrageous plot twists, deeply emotional love stories, high stakes and higher drama. Her stories are filled with love, family, friendship, and the happily-ever- after we all hope to find. Jennifer lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and three children. When she finally leaves those fictional worlds, you’ll find her in the garden, playing in the dirt and daydreaming about people who live only in her head, until she puts them on paper.