Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: HQN Books (June 30, 2015)
Stanton Rourke lives life on the edge. The steely mercenary is dangerous in every way…especially to Clarisse Carrington’s heart. She and Rourke were playmates as children, but she’s not the innocent girl he once knew. When tragedy robbed Clarisse of her entire family, her life was changed forever. Besides, she’s a grown woman now, and there are secrets that hold her back from succumbing to her pursuer. As she struggles to keep her distance, sparks as hot as a Texas summer fly between them. But danger is following Clarisse, leaving her no choice but to rely on Rourke, even as the old wounds lying dormant between them flare up again…
“Palmer…is the queen of desperado quests for justice and true love.” -Publishers Weekly
“The popular Palmer has penned another winning novel, a perfect blend of romance and suspense.”–Booklist on Lawman
“Diana Palmer is a mesmerizing storyteller who captures the essence of what a romance should be.”–Affaire de Coeur
He readjusted the ponytail that held his long blond hair. His one pale brown eye was troubled, beside the one wearing the eye patch. He’d lost the eye years ago, in a combat situation that had also given him devastating scars. It hadn’t kept him out of the game by a long shot, but he’d turned his attention to less physical pursuits, working chiefly for K. C. Kantor’s paramilitary ops group as an intel expert, when he wasn’t working for a covert government agency in another country.
K.C. didn’t like him going into danger. He didn’t care what the older man liked. He suspected, had long suspected, that K.C. was his real father. He knew K.C. had the same suspicion. Neither of them had the guts to have a DNA profile done and learn the truth, although Rourke had asked a doctor to do a DNA profile of his assumed father.
The results had been disturbing. Rourke’s apparent father had been K.C.’s best friend. Rourke’s mother had been a little saint. She’d never cheated on her husband, to Rourke’s knowledge, but when she was dying she’d whispered to the doctor, Rourke’s friend, that she’d felt sorry for K.C. when the woman he loved had taken the veil as a nun, and things had happened. She died before she could elaborate. Rourke had never had the nerve to actually ask K.C. about it. He wasn’t afraid of the other man. But they had a mutual respect that he didn’t want to lose.
Tat was another matter. He closed his eye and groaned inwardly. He remembered her at seventeen, the most beautiful woman he’d ever seen in his entire life. Soft, light blond hair in a feathery cut around her exquisite face, her china-blue eyes wide and soft and loving. She’d been wearing a green dress, something slinky but demure, because her parents were very religious. Rourke had been teasing her and she’d laughed up at him. Something had snapped inside him. He’d gathered her up like priceless treasure and started kissing her. Actually, he’d done a lot more than just kiss her. Only the sudden arrival of her mother had broken it up, and her mother had been furious.
She’d hidden it, smoothing things over. But then Tat’s mother had taken Rourke to one side, and with quiet fury, she’d told him something that destroyed his life. From that night, he’d been so cold to Tat that she thought he hated her. He had to let her think it. She was the one woman on earth that he could never have.
He opened his eye, grinding down on the memories before they started eating him alive again. He wished that he’d never touched her, that he didn’t have the shy innocence of her mouth, her worshipping eyes, to haunt his dreams. He’d driven her into the arms of other men with his hatred, and that only made the pain worse. He taunted her with it, when he knew it was his own fault. He’d had no choice. He couldn’t even tell her the truth. She’d worshipped her mother. She had passed away from a virus she’d caught while nursing others. Now Tat was alone, the tragic deaths of her father and young sister still haunting her months after they’d drowned in a piranha-infested river on a tour of local villages.
Rourke had been at the funeral. He couldn’t help the way he felt. If Tat was in trouble, or hurt, he was always there. He’d known her since she was eight and her parents lived next door to K.C., who was by that time Rourke’s legal guardian, in Africa. Since Tat was ten years old and Rourke was fifteen, and he’d carried her out of the jungle in his arms to a doctor, after letting her get bitten by a viper, she’d been his. He couldn’t have her, but he couldn’t stop taking care of her. He knew his attitude puzzled her, because he was usually her worst enemy. But let her be hurt, or threatened, and he was right there. Always. Like now.
About Diana Palmer
An icon in western romance, Diana Palmer has been writing with Harlequin since 1980 and has published over 180 titles, with over 61 million books sold! When not writing, Susan’s hobbies are gardening, knitting, crocheting, astronomy, archaeology and animals. She also has dogs, cats, birds and lizards.
EXCERPT TOUR for Untamed by Diana Palmer:
Monday, June 22nd: Book Mama Blog
Tuesday, June 23rd: A Chick Who Reads
Wednesday, June 24th: Broken Teepee
Thursday, June 25th: Urban Girl Reader
Friday, June 26th: Book Reviews & More by Kathy
Monday, June 29th: Read Love Blog
Tuesday, June 30th: Bibliotica
Wednesday, July 1st: The Sassy Bookster
Thursday, July 2nd: Bibliophilia, Please
Friday, July 3rd: Books and Spoons
Monday, July 6th: From the TBR Pile
Tuesday, July 7th: Let Them Read Books
Wednesday, July 8th: One Curvy Blogger
Thursday, July 9th: Romance Novels for the Beach
Friday, July 10th: Raven Haired Girl
Monday, July 13th: A Night’s Dream of Booksa Rafflecopter giveaway