Outside the lines
For the first time in her life, good-girl Maria Rodriguez throws aside caution for an all-consuming desire. She wants freedom from rules and her family looking over her shoulder. She wants the love she’s only ever dreamed of. But that love walks away. Jaded bachelor David March doesn’t believe in love. His fling with the pretty Hispanic woman from California is as close to feeling as he wants to get. Now, he’s back home, burying himself in work and trying to forget.
Shortly after he leaves, Maria finds out she’s pregnant. Her first leap into freedom results in a life-changing consequence. She knows she has to find him. But what she finds is not what she expects. David is not the down-to-earth man he portrayed. And the love she remembers has been replaced by cold calculation and contracts. He lied to her once. Can she trust that a marriage agreement will bring back the love they once shared?
Blog Post: When your Hero is a BETA with Alpha tendencies
Hi! Beth Rhodes here, celebrating another year in publishing. I’ve noticed lately that romance novels are having a serious relationship with the Alpha Male. Billionaires, military personnel, fighters, policemen… romance novels have them all.
But, I have to admit, sometimes…my heroes are different.
Alphas disguised as Betas. Or, Betas with a streak of Alpha.
In Letters From Home (Love Beyond Reason, book 1), a contemporary military romance, Zack is a Non-commissioned Officer in the United States Army. He falls in love with an Officer… a doctor. And you know what? He smiles, a lot. He wants his woman, and he won’t take no for an answer…but you’d almost never know it. And my favorite scene? The one where he shows that Alpha streak over the other man.
When Anabel snapped her fingers, Zack moved. Everyone moved.
He didn’t mind shoving the love-struck Phillip out of the way, either. Could this be the guy Lena had been going on about? An overseas address for the town’s pride and joy could be found in the newspaper… Maybe Zack hadn’t been the only one sending her letters.
He caught Lena just as her knees gave out.
“Hey.” Phillip countered the move with indignation, and his hand came out to stroke Lena’s arm.
An unexpected ball of fury lodged in Zack’s throat. He gritted his teeth. “Upstairs?”
Anabel patted Phillip on the arm with a consoling smile and nodded to Zack. “Sí. Take her to her room, Zack. I’m sure she’s just exhausted. I’ll follow you up.”
He took the stairs two at a time and turned the corner to the girls’ room, his steps quiet on the shaggy carpet.
Lena moaned and moved in his arms.
“Take it easy, babe.”
“Oh.” The word was drawn out, and she shifted in his arms. “I don’t feel good.”
Zack changed direction and gently kicked open the door across the hall from the bedroom. Letting go of her legs first, he set her down and lowered her to sit on the edge of the bathtub. She leaned against his leg so that he was stuck.
Bending at the waist, he reached for a hand towel from the rack above the sink, turned the cold water on, and soaked it. He squeezed the thick purple cotton, draining the water.
With one hand full of towel, he placed a hand on her head, and his fingers caught in the soft web of her hair, his breath stopped in his throat. Okay. It’s just hair. Really thick, shiny hair, which he shouldn’t be touching, because it made him feel an unbelievably tender ache inside. But not just that, he wanted to touch her. He shook the thought from his mind.
“Hey. Come on, Lena.” With a hand supporting her shoulder, Zack lifted her weight from his leg and crouched down in front of her. He placed the cold towel in her hand and helped her place it against her forehead for a moment. “How you feeling now?”
She opened eyes still clouded from fatigue and blinked. “A little better. I think.”
A knock on the door, and it opened, bumping into his back.
Anabel slipped in and set a glass of water on the counter. “Everyone okay?”
Lena nodded her head. “I think…I just need to lie down for a little while.”
“Zack, could you…? I’ve got Uncle Eddie down there, and he just dumped a pan of chile con carne down the front of the oven.” Giving his shoulder a squeeze, she kissed him on the top of the head. “Gracias, mi otro hijo.”
But enough of about Zack…
David March is my first ever rich boy. And what fun I had learning about him. He’s privileged yet down-to-earth. Behind his desk, he is always in control. But when he steps into his personal life, things always get squishy.
He fights love because love brings pain. In spite of that, I love him and can’t help but share him.
Characteristics that make the hero loveable:
- Sense of humor: you’re going to love David’s attempt to name the baby
- Protective: The way he takes down Tammy after she loses it at the coffee shop makes the reader’s heart melt! Okay, mine. Makes my heart melt.
- Vulnerable: I never met a guy so afraid to love. He tries so hard to keep it from happening…
He stopped short in the doorway.
Maria and Mrs. Kraus danced across the hardwood floor in front of him. Maria’s dress revealed well-toned calves with each turn. Her feet moved quick and sure under her, and the older woman’s barely kept up. The ache in his neck eased when he laughed. “Not bad, Mrs. Kraus.”
“It’s the salsa,” she answered as the two women did a little turn. Maria’s hips—holy mother, don’t even think about sex right now—moved to the rhythm and then her shoulders dipped and shook as she lead Mrs. Kraus into another twirly turny thing.
He rubbed a hand at the back of his neck with a smile.
Sex. Sex. Sex.
Stop thinking about sex!
“You try it!” Mrs. Kraus let go of Maria who did another twirl and landed in his arms.
“I’m not much of a dancer.”
Maria kissed him lightly, laughing. “Everyone can dance,” she said, taking both his hands and moving him over the floor.
He watched her feet, which happened to be bare. Toes painted a dark red.
Sex. Sex. Sex.
I’m not thinking about sex.
Liar. He lifted his gaze to her face, her pretty brown eyes, and found her grinning at him and wagging those eye brows. Like she knew what he was thinking—the little devil.
Her stories are full of life, family, and love. You can find her reading just about any genre of romance, but her favorites are fast-paced suspense, where life is on the line and love is the only saving grace. She wants a book that makes her heart pound and her pulse race.
Beth is a member of Romance Writers of America, Pikes Peak Writers, Colorado Romance Writers, and International Thriller Writers. She is signed with Entangled Publishing and Boroughs Publishing Group.