Good Morning! It’s Midweek Tease time and have I got a deal for you today. For a limited time, The Harvester Saga, including The White Carnation, The White Lily, and The White Iris is available electronically as a three book bundle for less than one US dollar. That’s a savings of almost ten USD for the three books.
My publisher, Crimson Romance likes to offer these deals to readers as a way to promote my work, and so far I think it’s doing the job.
Here’s the blurb: Join Boston’s crack detective team as its members track down the most heinous serial killer to ever strike the city, the Harvester. Clues and cults, dead ends and danger await these expert crime solvers as they team up with the flames they left behind and race against time to save everything they love.
- The White Carnation: The last person disgraced reporter Faye Lewis wants back in her life is Detective Rob Halliday, the man she blames for ruining her career and breaking her heart. But when she finds an old friend murdered, he’s assigned the case. Can they set their troubled past aside and work together, or will the Harvester serial killer and his cult followers reap another prize?
- The White Lily: With kidnapped babies on the line, FBI cult specialist Lilith Munroe puts aside her emotional scars and offers her profiling skills to the Harvester task force. She’s assigned to work with Australian millionaire and law enforcement officer Jacob Andrews, who returned to the United States only to learn his family was a casualty of the commune he eventually escaped. Uneasy partners, the pair must learn to trust each other even as they fight their growing attraction. But when Lilith’s greatest fears materialize, will Jacob be able to overcome his anger and save the woman he loves?
- The White Iris: Time’s running out for Special Agent Trevor Clark and his task force as the killer’s threats to unleash possible biological warfare could mean death for all of them. His only recourse is to swallow his pride and reach out to his former fiancee, the CDC’s renowned virologist, Dr. Julie Swift. She has to put her faith and her safety, as well as that of countless others, into the hands of a man she doesn’t trust. Can they forget their differences long enough to stop the Harvester and rediscover the love they once lost?
Sensuality Level: Sensual
Now, for this week’s tease, taken from Book 1 of the saga, The White Carnation
Twenty minutes later, the unmarked police sedan pulled up behind the black and white outside the brownstone. The paramedics were parked farther along the street, just ahead of the police car, reducing traffic to a single lane. The coroner’s van pulled up behind them. Rob got out and approached the coroner.
“Amos, I didn’t expect to see you here so soon. I called for a bus, not the meat wagon.”
“Paramedics were nearby so Logan got here quickly. He radioed in—exsanguination due to a lacerated throat. He’s still up there. Nothing he can do for the victim, but your fiancée is taking it hard.”
“The victim was like a second mother to her.”
Your fiancée—Amos’s words were true once, but never again. There was no way Rob would hitch his wagon to a woman who could believe he’d betray her like that, a woman who’d put her job so far ahead of him, he’d barely been on her radar at times. The sex had been great, but love was supposed to be more than that. Still, she’d reached out to him. He took the stairs to the brownstone two at a time, his lean, muscular body having no problem with the climb. He flashed his badge at the officer who stood guarding the door. “Anyone showing any interest?”
“No, Detective. According to the concierge, the people in number five are in Europe, and I don’t think the rest of the residents are home from work yet. Looks like a robbery—the place has been tossed pretty good—and there’s no damage to the door, so she must have let them in. Logan says her throat’s been slit from behind.”
“Where’s Ms. Lewis?”
“In the living room with Logan. He wanted to take her to the ER—claims she’s in shock. I told him she had to stay put until you arrived. He’s pissed at me. Says I’m interfering with his job. He seems pretty friendly with her. I heard she’s some big shot investigative reporter.” He chuckled. “Some crime reporter—she’s puked a couple of times already.” He continued to laugh. Rob’s face must have reflected the anger moving to the surface because the guard choked it off.
“Rick Logan is one of the best paramedics we have. For the record, McMillan,” Rob read the nameplate on the policeman’s uniform, “the next time he says someone has to go the ER, you’d better damn well listen to him. And as for Ms. Lewis, the victim was a personal friend. It’s different when the victim’s someone you know.” His voice was clipped, his displeasure obvious.
Rob turned and entered the apartment. He’d learned the need to remain objective in order to do the job properly, but as he’d told the young officer, it was different when it was personal. Not only had the victim been an acquaintance, Faye was in there. He swallowed and tried to find the emotional distance he needed.
The place was a mess, just as the officer had said. He looked around quickly, his trained eye taking in everything in an instant—the wallet on the table, money on the floor mixed with the victim’s blood, the take-out bag, Faye’s purse and its scattered contents. Whatever this had been, it hadn’t been a routine robbery. Someone had been looking for something other than the usual snatch and grab items, so what were they after? What could Mrs. Green have that was worth dying for?
He found Faye sitting on the living-room sofa with Logan. Her face was red and blotchy, her blue-green eyes mascara-rimmed from her tears, and her clothing disheveled and covered in blood. She stood and moved forward, stopping before she reached him. Wrapping her arms around herself, she looked young and vulnerable, not a bit like the bitter, angry woman she’d been the last time he’d seen her.
“I’ll take it from here, Logan. Thanks for staying with her.” Rob’s voice was strong and steady, completely the opposite of the way he felt. Seeing her like this shook him to the core.
“No problem. Get her out of here as soon as you can. Don’t be too hard on her tonight. I know you need answers, but …” Logan shrugged and went into the other room.
“Are you okay?” Rob asked.
Faye closed the distance between them quickly, surprising him with the violence of her action as she shoved him back.
“Am I okay?” she shouted. “You can stand there and ask me that with my friend’s mother dead in the other room?” She punctuated her words with a shove. “No, I am not okay. I am most definitely not okay.” Fresh tears ran down her cheeks, and Rob instinctively reached for her to offer what comfort he could. She held herself stiffly for a few seconds before relaxing into his shoulder.
“I didn’t mean it that way,” he said, feeling like a fool. Holding her like this felt awkward and yet familiar. “I’m sorry for your loss.” His hand rubbed small circles on her back as he’d done many times before. “Home invasions don’t always make sense. There’s no sign of forced entry, so she must have let him in.”
Faye pushed away, her anger palpable.
“Seriously? Home invasion, my ass. Look around, Sherlock. Home invasions usually involve some kind of theft. Do you see anything worth stealing? The television is twenty years old, and it’s still here. The silverware is scattered all over, and she’s still wearing her rings.