Hardened Hearts austins-apology  shadowed-secrets  guarding-greatness 

Well, this is it. Book four

Well, this is it.  Book four – Guarding Greatness – is in the hands of beta readers.

It’s the story of Gage Martin, our resident disappearing/reappearing, tall, quiet, and handsome mystery man that always seems to show up in the nick of time to be the team’s saving grace.  But, how quiet will he be while he finds his true love?

Guarding Greatness was originally supposed to be book three in the series… but as I write, I learn.  And I learned two things this time around.

The first is, if I my leading man isn’t ready to talk to me, he’s just not going to talk to me. 

That was the case here.   I wrote, scrapped, wrote, erased, wrote, and eventually gave up (temporarily) on Gage.  Sharp stepped up, took his place, and Shadowed Secrets won the number three spot.

It was for the best, because the original story I had in mind for Gage just wasn’t right for him… or his leading lady Genna.  In fact, Genna became a completely different person all together in this book.  I have to admit – I like her a lot more now.

So – enough about my relationship with them.  Let’s talk about what their relationship is all about.

Gage Martin is, as most alpha-heroes tend to be, fiercely protective of his friends, his past, and his heart.  He’s seen true love, but doesn’t trust it.  There is one woman that he doesn’t mind dropping everything for, though… even if she does come from a very public family.

Genna VanJohnson is an every-woman… or rather… as much as she can be while also being the cousin to a Prince-In-Waiting.  She knows that a giant spotlight is never far away from her family, and does everything she can to live her normal life for as long as she can – before the spotlight finds her.

They’re paired together on a Teams mission that turns personal when the small island chain Genna calls home becomes the center of a political game of cat and mouse.  They’ve worked together well in the past, but when both the job – and the partner – become personal, that’s when things get hot.

The second thing I learned is that not every team member is created equal.

Turns out, the plans I had to make this a six book series have been dwindled down to just five.  The young and fun medic, Marcus Marcado  - who has an amazing scene in Guarding Greatness – was going to have his own book, but I stole the one scene I always had in mind for Marcado and gave it to Gage… leaving Marcado without anything to call his own.

Will he make an appearance as his own book? I’ll never say never, but he may have to do a little growing first.

In the meantime, I hope you’re as excited as I am for Guarding Greatness.  There are still a few more chores to be done before I can hand Gage over to you, but when I do, I hope you have as much fun reading him as I did writing him.