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Authors: Karen Rose Smith

Always Devoted

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Always Devoted
Search For Love [3]
Karen Rose Smith
(2011)

"Popular Harlequin/Silhouette romance author Karen Rose Smith adds a bit of a mystery to contemporary romance in ALWAYS DEVOTED, but she continues to delve into the hearts of her characters and includes her trademark heartwarming passages between an alpha man and a child". Jane Bowers, Romance Reviews Today

"The mystery of what happened to Paige is cleverly handled while the touch of the paranormal enhances the exciting story line. However, it is the changing relationship between the cynic, the mom, and the child who affirm that Ms. Smith is one of the best contemporary family drama authors." Harriet Klausner, reviewer
ALWAYS DEVOTED Brand new novella Contemporary romance/mystery
Search For Love, Book 3, Linc Granger's story

Single mom, Emma Henderson's worry about her missing sister threatens to overshadow her life. Media mogul Linc Granger offers Emma help, first by airing a nation-wide interview and then... By suggesting Emma consult with his friend Gillian Bradley who has a "gift" for finding missing persons.
As Emma and Linc walk the beach and she considers his unorthodox suggestion, Emma realizes she feels a sizzle of attraction to this man that she never felt with another--not even her late husband. Linc Granger is out of her league in so many ways. Yet her four-year-old daughter Becky believes he's her new best friend!
Emma and Linc's chemistry is impossible to deny as they consult with Gillian and follow leads to find Paige. What happens when their attraction explodes and they do find answers? Will Emma be able to leave the past behind to find a future with Linc?
Linc Granger's friends Nathan and Gillian Bradley (NATHAN'S VOW, Book 1, Search For Love) as well as Sara and Jake Donovan (JAKE'S BRIDE, Book 2, Search For Love) play an instrumental role in ALWAYS DEVOTED. Other friends of Linc's are introduced--Zack Burke and Tessa Kahill. They will have their own SEARCH FOR LOVE novels in 2012!

Twice a winner of New Jersey's Golden Leaf Award in Short Contemporary Romance, Colorado Romance Writers Award Of Excellence for short contemporary, as well as the Phoenix Desert Rose Chapter's Golden Quill for Traditional Romance, Karen Rose Smith has also been honored with Cataromance.com's award for Best Special Edition. Her romances have made both the
USA TODAY
list, Borders Group Bestseller list for Series Romance as well as the Amazon Contemporary Romance Bestseller list.

Also watch for contemporary romances, each with a different twist, in Karen Rose Smith's Search For Love ebook series.
NATHAN'S VOW, Book 1 Search For Love series romance/paranormal
JAKE'S BRIDE, Book 2 Search For Love series romance/marriage of convenience, secret baby
ALWAYS DEVOTED, Book 3 Search For Love series romance/mystery
ALWAYS HER COWBOY, Book 4 Search For Love series, contemporary ranch romance
HEARTFIRE, Book 5 Search For Love series, contemporary reunion/family romance
CASSIDY'S COWBOY, Book 6 Search For Love series, women's fiction/romance novella

Review

"Popular Harlequin/Silhouette romance author Karen Rose Smith adds a bit of a mystery to contemporary romance in ALWAYS DEVOTED, but she continues to delve into the hearts of her characters and includes her trademark heartwarming passages between an alpha man and a child." Jane Bowers, Romance Reviews Today

From the Author

ALWAYS DEVOTED is Book 3 in my Search For Love series. It is a never-before-published novella, only available in an e-book. In the first book of the series, Nathan's Vow, I introduce Linc Granger as Nathan's best friend. He was definitely hero material and I had to write a book just for him! Though my forte is usually romance, I decided to go a little more mainstream with this one and add some mystery for a change of pace. I think you'll fall in love with Linc and feel deeply for Emma and her daughter. But I also believe you'll want to find the answer to--What happened to Emma's sister?

Throughout all my books (over 75 now) , I attempt to keep the emotion of my characters as the focus. My intention is always to touch my readers' hearts and urge them to believe in happily-ever-after. Living in Pennsylvania with my college sweetheart and two cats, I spend most days writing, editing, cooking and gardening. I draw inspiration from music, the farm in my back yard, and my hummingbird garden. Relationships have always fascinated me and I look forward to writing about them for a long time to come. For more about me and my latest releases, including excerpts, photos and short stories, please visit my website at karenrosesmith.com. To keep in touch day to day, follow me at Facebook, on Twitter and on my blog--Cats, Roses...and Books! listed on my Amazon Author Central page. Look for more of my books on Amazon Kindle.

Thanks to Judy Bullard for my wonderfully beautiful cover.

 

 

 

 

Always Devoted

Search For Love Series

Book 3 -- Novella

 

Karen Rose Smith

 

 

Published by Karen Rose Smith at Kindle

 

Copyright 2011 Karen Rose Smith

All Rights Reserved

 

 

No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

 

 

 

This is a work of fiction.  Names, characters and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously.  Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

 

www.karenrosesmith.com

Chapter One

 

"What do you believe happened to your sister?"

Emma Henderson felt her throat tighten and she found swallowing difficult.  She hated the glare of the television lights and found her gaze swinging away from the camera to offstage where Linc Granger stood.  The successful TV producer, who garnered high ratings with his specials, had convinced her this interview might help find Paige.  That was the only reason she'd agreed to do it.

"I don't know what happened to Paige, Ms. Kahill.  She left one afternoon to drive to San Francisco for the weekend and I haven't seen her since."  Emma's voice cracked.

She almost felt Linc Granger take a step forward.  To do what?  Stop the interview with journalist, Tessa Kahill?  To comfort her?  To tell her everything was going to be okay when she knew it wasn't?

"Her car was found on the shoulder of the highway and she was missing.  Can you tell me what your thoughts were when you found out?" the world-renown journalist asked.

"I was stunned.  I couldn't believe it.  At first we all thought she might have been kidnapped.  But there was no call...no note for ransom...nothing."

"You were on the police list of persons of interest for a while, weren't you?"

"Tessa!"  Linc Granger's deep voice rent the air with authority.  He told the technicians to cut and take five.  Then he strode up beside the interviewer.

His gaze connected to Emma's for a heart-stopping moment.

She tore her eyes from his and took a deep breath.  She shouldn't have this reaction to him.  He'd been compassionate toward her, protective even, and she was grateful.  That's all there was to it.

But as Linc and the beautiful, curly-haired interviewer argued over the questions for the remainder of the interview to be aired later in the week, Emma knew she felt a spark of something with Linc Granger she'd never felt with her late husband Barrett.

After another minute or two of discussion, Linc crossed over to her chair and towered over her.  He raked his hand through his dark brown hair, his green eyes turbulent.  "Tessa insists she has to go this route.  She thinks it's better if everything is out there in the public's face.  I don't necessarily agree.  I know you lost your husband a year ago and this is hard.  If you'd rather Tessa go in a different direction—"

As Emma shook her head, her honey-blond hair fell over her shoulder.  "The family is always questioned.  The family is always of interest.  It's okay, Mr. Granger."

"It's Linc," he said gently.  As cutting as his voice had been a few moments before, it was so different now. 

Ever since their first meeting, she'd felt strangely out of breath.  She was a mother with a four-year-old, and her sister was missing.  She couldn't think about anything else.

Squaring her shoulders, she assured him, "I can handle Ms. Kahill's questions."

As Linc Granger studied her, she felt almost all of the air get sucked out of the room.  What was it about him that made her so flustered?  He was older, between thirty-five and forty she guessed, and she felt young at twenty-six for the first time in years.  She'd taken on a lot of responsibility early.

After a few moments, he reassured her again.  "If anything makes you too uncomfortable, you can say so.  I'm sorry I wasn't here when the interview started.  I would have laid down some ground rules."  He glared at Tessa as she was studying her notes.

"When you offered me the opportunity to publicize Paige's disappearance again, you said Tessa Kahill was the best.  Maybe you should let her do her job.  Before we started, she told me she has to be on a plane out of L.A. tonight to Afghanistan."

"You like her," Linc noted with a wry smile.

"We talked before the interview.  Yes, I do.  And I respect her."

"Good."  He sounded relieved.  "Then I'll let her continue and I won't interfere again.  But I would like to discuss something with you when this is over.  Do you have time?"

What could he want to discuss with her?  They'd spoken at length about what had happened to Paige, the little bit she knew, and Emma's desire to stay out of the spotlight for her daughter's sake.  But he seemed to have something important to say and she did want to hear it.

"My next door neighbor is watching Becky.  I'll have some time."

He was quiet for a few moments, but the intensity of his expression suddenly gave her the knowledge that Linc Granger was a very different man than Barrett Henderson had been.

It shouldn't matter.

But she found herself wanting to listen to Linc, even though she suspected that simple conversation with him could unsettle her life even more.

#

What a stupid thing to do!

Linc never interrupted the flow of an interview.  When he'd asked Tessa to do this, she'd told him she could fit it in during a layover in L.A.  She'd been in Mexico interviewing some diplomat, and then she was gone again for Afghanistan to tape a special report.

So why had he jumped in?

Because Emma Trent Henderson fascinated him.  She and her four-year-old daughter had been through the cable newsringer when her sister had disappeared three months ago.  Yet she'd somehow retained her dignity and poise.  Still, the lost look in her expressive brown eyes when she spoke about her sister, Paige, haunted him.

From her first press conference, he'd been intrigued by her and her story.  Maybe because he knew someone who could help her if she wanted to be helped.  Unorthodox means weren't for everyone, but he had the feeling Emma had exhausted the usual channels.

The cameras were rolling again and Tessa was asking more questions.  As he listened to the rest of the interview, he became more sure about the information he wanted to give Emma.  When he heard Tessa end her questions with, "Tell me how you feel as a widow, with a four-year-old to raise and no idea where your sister is," he listened hard.

Emma didn't hesitate to say softly, "Sometimes I feel as if I'm in limbo.  I'm searching for answers and I don't know if I'll ever find them."

Linc knew he had to tell Emma about Gillian Bradley and her special gift.

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