Welcome to my Friday bonus feature called Karen’s Killer Fixin’s **Author Special**!! Today, in lieu of one of my own recipes, I’m going to introduce you to a new author who will share one of her favorite recipes. Not only will you and I occasionally learn how to make something new and delicious, but we’ll get a chance to check out some wonderful authors. Introducing author, CATE BEAUMAN, and her favorite recipe for HAMBURGER CASSEROLE!
JUSTICE FOR ABBY by CATE BEAUMAN
Cate Beauman is back with the sixth installment in her bestselling romantic suspense series, The Bodyguards of L.A. County.
Justice For Abby is on sale now through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, & iTunes!
To learn more, visit Cate at www.catebeauman.com
NOWHERE TO HIDE….
Fashion designer Abigail Harris has been rescued, but her nightmare is far from over. Determined to put her harrowing ordeal behind her and move on, she struggles to pick up the pieces of her life while eluding the men who want her dead.
The Mid-Atlantic Sex Ring is in ruins after Abby’s interviews with the police. The organization is eager to exact their revenge before her testimony dismantles the multi-million dollar operation for good.
Abby’s safety rests in the hands of former US Marshal, Jerrod Quinn. Serious-minded and obsessed with protocol, Ethan Cooke Security’s newest agent finds himself dealing with more than he bargains for when he agrees to take on his beautiful, free-spirited client.
As the trial date nears, Abby’s case takes a dangerous turn. Abby and Jerrod soon discover themselves in a situation neither of them expect while Jerrod fights to stop the ring from silencing Abby once and for all.
JUSTICE FOR ABBY by CATE BEAUMAN
The black bag was ripped from her head, along with several strands of her hair. Abby blinked against the bold light of the naked bulbs hanging from the low ceiling. She glanced around the dingy space in shock as her gaze traveled from girl to girl—six young teens, dirty, bruised, and malnourished, staring up at her through bland eyes while they sat or lay on filthy mattresses on the dirt floor. “What—”
“In.” Victor shoved Abby into a small, windowless room, slamming the door, locking her in with a rusty scrape of something sliding against the heavy metal barrier.
She walked on shaky legs to the wooden chair in the corner and collapsed to the uncomfortable seat, clutching her arms around her waist, shivering as she bit hard on her bottom lip while tears rained down her cheeks. Where was she? What was this place? She shuddered, remembering six sets of listless eyes holding hers. Nothing good was happening here.
She covered her face with trembling hands and gave into her sobs, relieving the worst of her dread, wishing for nothing more than to be home with Lex and Livy. Thinking of her sister and niece, she forced away her tears, taking several deep breaths of stale air. If she wanted to see her family again she needed to pull herself together. She couldn’t get herself out of this—whatever this was—if she didn’t think. There had to be a way out. Her eyes darted around the barely lit space, searching for a weapon, another exit, anything.
The door opened, and she rushed to her feet as a tall, well-built man stood haloed in the beam of light from the room beyond. Abby blinked as he stepped forward. “Renzo?” She bolted from the corner and fell against her friend’s firm chest as a wave or relief flooded her. “Oh, thank god.”
His strong arms wrapped around her.
“I’m so glad you’re here. I don’t know what’s going on. I need help. Can you help me?”
“What happened?” He eased her back some, but she refused to release him from her grip.
“My family—we were on our way home from Virginia Beach. We stopped at a rest area, and two men grabbed me and brought me here.”
“You were with your sister and niece?”
“Yes, Alexa and Olivia. I think they’re okay, but I need to call and make sure. Will you get me out of here?”
She could hardly believe she was leaving. “Thank you. Thank you.” She hugged Renzo again as tears of gratitude flowed free. “I knew this had to be some sort of mistake.”
“Come on, let’s get you home.” He wrapped his arm around her waist and walked with her to the door. “Oh, wait.” He stopped.
“I can’t let you go.”
The Inspiration Behind Justice For Abby
Justice For Abby is one of my favorite stories in The Bodyguards of L.A. County series (Okay, they all are, but I really love Abby and Jerrod!). I truly enjoyed writing their adventure. Oftentimes I found myself caught up in Abby’s rollercoaster ride as she heals from her experiences as a survivor of the Mid-Atlantic Sex Ring. At times I cried with her, and at others, I laughed. She’s so strong and sweet, but she’s vulnerable and struggling. Enter Jerrod Quinn, the perfect man to provide her protection and help her overcome her ordeal in his own quiet way.
Although Abby’s story is one of fiction, sex trafficking is a very real crisis for millions of young women, men, and children all over the globe. My idea for this novel came after a night in front of the television watching crime television. A segment showcasing the mysterious disappearance of a young woman named Amy Bradley bothered me greatly. She vanished from a cruise ship in March of 1998 while vacationing with her family. Unfortunately, Amy has yet to be found, but she is believed to be alive, stuck in the horrific world of human sex trafficking. I immediately began my research into this very troubling epidemic and shortly after wrote Forever Alexa, the story of Abby’s sister dealing with the aftermath of Abby’s disappearance. My readers have requested Abby’s story, and I felt the need to share her experience.
I hope you enjoy getting to know Abby and Jerrod as much as I enjoyed writing these two fantastic characters.
Cate currently lives in Tennessee with her husband, their two boys, and St. Bernards, Bear and Jack. She is the author of the best selling romantic suspense series, The Bodyguards of L.A. County. Before her career as an author, Cate worked in special education for 12 years.
“I’m a pretty lucky girl; one day I woke up and my entire life changed. I saw the light, so to speak, and decided I was going to be a writer. Now, three years later, I’m working on my seventh novel, Saving Sophie, and I’m an Amazon best selling author. I’m very grateful for the support and success I have had. – Cate”
Links to Cate’s website, blog, books, etc.
Amazon Author Page
I hope you enjoy the recipe Cate is sharing with us today on Karen’s Killer Fixin’s. Happy eating!
P.S. We’re at 138 recipes and counting with this posting. Hope you find some recipes you like. If this is your first visit, please check out past blogs for more Killer Fixin’s. In the right hand column menu, you can even look up past recipes by type. i.e. Desserts, Breads, Beef, Chicken, Soups, Author Specials, etc.
[Cate’s Family Recipe]
Hamburger casserole is a meal I grew up with. It’s definitely one of my top five favorite comfort foods. Hamburger casserole doesn’t look like much; in fact, when prepared, it looks…interesting. My husband almost refused to try it when we were dating so many years ago. Now, he’s more than happy to heap a good-sized portion on his plate when I set the casserole dish in the center of our family dinner table!
1 lb hamburger
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
½ cup green pepper, chopped
1 can condensed tomato soup
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 can chow Mein noodles, divided
1. Pre-heat oven 350 degrees.
2. Brown meat and chopped veggies until tender. Drain off any grease.
3. Add both cans of soup and simmer ten minutes on low heat.
4. Add half can of Chinese noodles and mix together then transfer to a prepared casserole dish.
5. Sprinkle most of the remaining Chinese noodles on top and bake for 20-30 minutes.
(This meal pairs well with mashed potatoes or rolls and a side salad.)
**SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: Cate will give away eBook copies of her book, JUSTICE FOR ABBY, to THREE readers who comment on her Karen’s Killer Fixin’s *Author Special* blog. Don’t miss your chance to read this story. Thanks, Cate, for sharing your story with us!