Karen’s Killer Book Bench #Second #Chance #Mature #Romance: GUARDED, Elkridge Series Book 8 by Lyz Kelley

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Elkridge Series Book 8


He was the one—but could she open the door to his heart.

Tandy was smitten with Jack Burke. He was handsome, honorable, and dedicated to serving the community of Elkridge as a volunteer EMT. He was her everything. Until she realized he could never give her what she wanted most—his heart.

With an exciting job offer in hand, she left the small mountain community to escape her heartache. But now she’s back with a secret she can’t bear to share.

Jack Burke long ago learned to wall off his emotions. As a former Army Special Operations Medic, he witnessed plenty of tragedies and learned to hide the horrors behind an unbreachable wall at the back of his mind.

But now Tandy Baker has flown back into town and threatens his safe, purposeful life. And once again she buzzes around him, a lovely, iridescent hummingbird more determined than ever to get him to make peace with his past.

Yet Jack is leery of Tandy. Her presence in Elkridge, and the mystery of her return, are threatening to bring down his safety walls.

From award-winning and USA Today best-selling author Lyz Kelley comes Tandy and Jack’s second-chance love story about their fight for happiness after years of heartache from avoiding the one person destined to be the other’s safe haven. (Note: This story can be read as a stand-alone, but is best read in series sequence to get the rich reader experience.)

Elkridge Series Book 8

Story Behind the Story

I believe no one is ordinary, that we are all extraordinary and can be everyday heroes. That hope, empathy, resilience, and optimism (HERO) are at the core of all unlikely heroes. Jack and Tandy, my heroes in Guarded, are perfect partners because together they find a way to take that leap of faith and embrace their everyday hero superpower.  

Jack is a former Army medic who suffers from survivor’s guilt. The way he deals with memories from the past is by volunteering as an EMT, helping homeless veterans, running the local bar, and compartmentalizing his life. By staying busy, he doesn’t have time to think, but that also means he has trouble opening his heart.

Tandy is a helper, but sometimes, lending a helping hand can get a person in trouble, like it has in this book. Tandy gets fired from her job and is uncertain about her future. Returning home, she has to face the reasons she left. And that reason is Jack and his inability to love.

And sometimes being an everyday hero means a person needs to see themselves through a friend’s eyes before believing they are worthy of love.

Songs for the book:

Tandy: Holding out for a Hero: Bonnie Tyler

Jack: A Soldier’s Memoir: Mitch Rossell

About Author Lyz Kelley…

A healing love is at the heart of all of award-winning and USA Today Bestselling author Lyz Kelley’s books. She mixes a spoonful of heart, healing, humanity, happiness, hope and honor in these small-town stories written especially for you. Creating these wounded yet amazing characters—discovering what drives them, frightens them, heals them, makes them laugh—is what gives her joy.

She’s a total disaster in the kitchen, a compulsive neat freak, a tea snob, adores her four-legged fur babies, and adores writing about and falling in love with everyday heroes


Links to Lyz’s website, blog, books, #ad etc.:


Genius Link: https://geni.us/LKGuarded

To keep tabs on Lyz’s newest releases, connect with her by signing up for her newsletter at LyzKelley.com or by signing up at, https://geni.us/LyzKelleyFreeBook


Special Giveaway: Lyz will give away a choice of a print copy (U.S. Only) or eBook copy of the first book in the Elkridge series, BLINDED, to one lucky reader who comments on her Karen’s Killer Book Bench blog.

Happy Reading!


Thanks, Lyz, for sharing your story with us!

Don’t miss the chance to read this book!


9 thoughts on “Karen’s Killer Book Bench #Second #Chance #Mature #Romance: GUARDED, Elkridge Series Book 8 by Lyz Kelley”

  1. I agree with Lyz…every person has his/her own intrinsic worth unique to them….
    Thanks, Karen and Lyz…

  2. Good morning, Lyz, and welcome back to Karen’s Killer Book Bench. I love second chance, more mature characters. Jack sounds like my kind of hero. Tandy will break down those walls! Thanks for sharing your story with us today!

  3. Hi, it sounds like a Great read, thank you so much for sharing about it. Have a great rest of the week and stay safe.

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