|Posted by tjmanderino on May 2, 2013 at 3:15 AM|
This blog hop is over, but I want to thank everyone for stopping by. This was a fun hop.
The winner from my blog is Marie Lisk! Congratulations, Marie. I will be gifting you a copy of False Notes.
Welcome to the Cowboys and Lawmen Blog Hop!
Join nearly 50 authors as we share why we love Cowboys and Lawmen. Cowboys are known as bad-boys, but what happens when the bad-boy is also the law in town?
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GrandPrize: At least a $75 Gift Card for Amazonor Barnes and Noble, your choice. The winner will be chosen at random fromcomments containing email addresses, and will be announced on May 7. This isopen to both US and international readers.
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Lawmen in the West
The old west was a haven for army deserters and criminals, as well as anyone attracted to the wide open space ofthe western states and territories, and those who wanted to leave their past behind and start fresh. With such a variety of inhabitants, it didn’t take long for law enforcement to become a presence in the towns. Not every town had a sheriff, and only the larger communities had police forces. Newer, smaller towns often didn’t even have a sheriff and were at the mercy of anyone who chose to wreak havoc.
So what happened if there was a crime that spanned several towns, or states? Then, like now, local law enforcement called for more help.
Long before there was the FBI, or the CIA, or any of the other alphabet of government agencies that operated on a national or global level, there was the Secret Service. That’s not to say their primary role was to enforce laws, but it was often a direct byproduct of their actions.
Oh? You thought the Secret Service protected the President.
Yes, they do. That is only one oftheir duties, but wasn’t added to their responsibilities until much later.
The Secret Service came into being on the tail end of the Civil War. In fact, it was the last official act of President Lincoln before he headed to the theater the night he was assassinated. The agency began operations on July 5, 1865 as a division of the Department of Treasury. Their role was to track down counterfeiters. Although the country was trying to switch to Federal Greenbacks, individual banks were still able to print their own currency. Unfortunately, many individuals thought they could too! As a result, up to one third of the nation’s currency was counterfeit.
After their success in cleaning up the counterfeit operations, their tasks expanded and grew to encompass mattersof national security. This broad category allowed, and encouraged, the agentsto take necessary action to protect the country. In this manner, they evolved into the country’s first domestic intelligence agency.
The Secret Service agents wer elawmen. Who can resist men who were determined to right, sometimes in the faceof overwhelming odds? Not me.
On the President’s Orders series takes place in 1874 America. The first two books in the series, False Notes, and Heart Quest, take place in the western states. The third, to be released in early summer, is centered inWashington, D.C. and slightly east. Two Secret Service agents, Simon Barr and Luke Hayden, and the women they love, delve into mysteries that could impact the young nation. Each of the books in the series can stand alone, so you don’t have to read them in any particular order. I tend to think of the series as the original Wild Wild West meets Romancing the Stone; adventure with unexpected romance thrown in.
In book one, False Notes: In late summer 1874,Simon Barr, one of the premiere agents of the newly evolving US Secret Service, arrives in Hobart, in the Oklahoma Territory, to meet his partner, Luke Hayden,and begin investigating a large scale counterfeiting operation. Shortly afte rarriving, Simon meets the lovely Kirsten Bentzer, only to learn she has ties tohis two chief suspects. His attraction to Kirsten catches him off guard andwars with his sense of duty. Surely, she can’t be innocent, no matter how much he wishes it were so.
Excerpt, False Notes:
Simon put one booted foot in the stirrup, started to heave himself into the saddle, and then stopped, his right foot still touching the ground. He cocked his head to the side, listening again for the sound, and sure enough, it came—a slight scraping noise. When Pride turned his head, as if questioning justwhat Simon intended to do, he pushed aside the big horse's head and removed hisleft foot, then quickly and quietly looped Pride's reins around the nearby hitching post. Rubbing the horse’s nose, indicating that he should be quiet, he swiftly pressed himself up against the wooden wall of the building and into the shadows, trying to gauge the direction of the sound. There was nothing sinister about it, but it was out of place. Finding what didn’t belong was part of his job.
No one seemed to be coming along the narrow sidewalk. Even the doors to the Golden Slipper Saloon were still and looked as if no one had gone through them for the past several hours. Shrugging at his own imaginings, he walked toward the post, his boot heels making little sound on the dusty street.When he bent to release Pride's reins, he stilled as he heard it again. This time, the scraping noise was followed by a loud thump and what sounded like a muffled curse.
Patting Pride on the nose and raising a finger to his lips, as if thehorse would understand him, Simon moved back into the shadows of the house and followed the sound. When he found the source, he stood there watching in amusement.
Evidently, the youth was thinking of sneaking out of—Simon glanced at the sign on the porch—KATE’s without paying.
He turned his attention back to the youth and stood there, watching as the boy dangled from the second story window, his fingers gripping the windowsill and his booted feet scraping against the side of the house. From where Simon stood, he could hear the youth take a deep breath, and knew he was going to let go. The kid probably wouldn't get hurt, but he sure would make aracket when he landed in the bushes below the window.
With a sigh, he moved below the youth and grabbed hold of his leg. There was a gasp and quick inhalation of breath. Instantly, the youth stilled against the building. Simon felt more than actually saw when the kid looked down at him.
Shooting what he hoped was one of his more friendly grins, Simon raised his finger to his lips, indicating silence, then waved the youth down.
Moving his hand up to the boy's thigh for better support, he was surprised to feel how slender he was. The youth went as still as a statue, and then let go of the window ledge. Simon caught him neatly, steadied him on his feet, and was pretty darn sure this was no lad. He reached out a hand to brush him down, and had his hand slapped for the trouble.
Simon cocked his head to one side, looking the boy over, but was sure the youth couldn’t see the action in thedark. “You’re sure?”
The false husky note had Simon’s lips twitching. And, definitely, his attention caught. Why ever would a femalebe climbing out of the local brothel? Was she looking for something on the side, and if so, why was she dressed as a male? Definitely intriguing. And one thing Simon loved was a mystery. Wouldn’t be in his line of work if he didn’t.
False Notes can befound on Amazon.com http://amzn.com/B004XJ4G4A
Thank you for reading! If you would like a chance to win your own ebook copy of False Notes,or one of my other titles, please be sure to leave your name and email in the comments. A comment on this blog will also make you eligible for the Cowboy and Lawmen Blog Hop Grand Prize($75 gift card to the reader’s choice of Amazon or Barnes & Noble). The winner will be announced on May 7.