I’m delighted today to give you a peek inside Crosshairs by Patricia Bradley with an excerpt – and a chance for three of you to win a copy of your own! Happy release day, Patricia!
SERIES: Natchez Trace Park Rangers #3
GENRE: Inspirational Romantic Suspense
RELEASE DATE: November 2, 2021
Investigative Services Branch (ISB) ranger Ainsley Beaumont arrives in her hometown of Natchez, Mississippi, to investigate the murder of a three-month-pregnant teenager. While she wishes the visit was under better circumstances, she never imagined that she would become the killer’s next target–nor that she’d have to work alongside an old flame.
After he almost killed a child, former FBI sniper Lincoln Steele couldn’t bring himself to fire a gun, which had deadly and unforeseen consequences for his best friend. Crushed beneath a load of guilt, Linc is working at Melrose Estate as an interpretive ranger. But as danger closes in on Ainsley during her murder investigation, Linc will have to find the courage to protect her. The only question is, will it be too little, too late?
Award-winning author Patricia Bradley continues her Natchez Trace Park Rangers series with a story about how good must prevail when evil just won’t quit.
from chapter one
Sonny had always heard the devil was in the details, and details of the murder over 150 years ago had not been in the journal he already possessed. It stood to reason if the new diaries were written not long before the murder happened, the details he sought would be in them. Details Jack Kingston would pay to keep private.
Sonny caught his breath. What if Ainsley decided to stay with Cora tonight instead of with her grandmother? He immediately dismissed the thought. Cora would have mentioned it.
If he was a praying man, Sonny would pray the old woman wouldn’t mention his name to her niece. She’d never liked him, and now Ainsley Beaumont was in some sort of law enforcement. She’d probably think he was taking advantage of her great- aunt. And she would be right.
His gaze darted to the house across the street where Cora’s sister lived. Rose’s house was already dark, and so were the houses on the opposite corners of the intersection. Good.
Stop worrying. Miss Cora had promised not to tell anyone she’d found the new journals, and she was old school. If she told you something, you could bank on it.
When he asked where she’d found them, she babbled some nonsense about showing him later. Well, he wasn’t waiting for later.
He rubbed his hand over his eyes, wiping away the rain. The corner light on the first floor dimmed to black. Things were turning around. He’d give her thirty minutes to fall sound asleep before he entered through the cellar and crept up the secret passageway that opened into the library on the first floor where Cora worked at her computer.
The woman was remarkable to navigate computers the way she did at her age. Too bad she had to die. It shouldn’t be too hard to make it look as though she’d died of natural causes in her sleep. A pillow should do the trick.
He flinched at a sudden pop of lightning followed almost instantly with thunder that shook the ground. As he looked up, more lightning revealed a thick wall cloud. He didn’t have time for violent weather tonight.
However, maybe the noise of the storm would hide his breaking and entering, and he wouldn’t have to wait thirty minutes. Sonny slipped away from the woods, then dashed to the cellar steps at the back of the two- story house and descended to the doorway. When another bolt of lightning lit up the sky, he thrust a fallen branch from the nearby magnolia tree through the glass pane above the handle just as the follow- up clap of thunder shook the windows.
Once inside the cellar, he eased behind the stairs and stood motionless, letting rain run off his slicker and listening for any sign he’d been heard. When no telltale footsteps sounded, he used the flashlight on his phone to illuminate the wall and find the small hole in the second panel of wood.
Once he triggered the latch, the door swung open noiselessly, and he quietly climbed the steep stairs. At the top, he unlatched the sliding door, pushed it to the side, and stepped into the library. He’d learned about the secret stairway as a young boy when his father replaced the door in the basement with a hidden panel for Miss Cora.
Once again, he stood perfectly still while the storm raged outside. So far, no tornado sirens sounded. When he was certain Cora hadn’t heard him, he flicked on the light from his phone
again and scanned the room, stopping at her desk.
He frowned. Where were the journals? They should have been on the cherry desk beside Miss Cora’s laptop— that’s where she put everything. They weren’t on the table beside it either. Sweat beaded his face. He had to find them.
A thorough search of the desk revealed no journals. Could she have taken them to her bedroom? What if she had referenced them to someone in an email? He stood behind the desk and booted up her computer, relaxing after he found nothing pertaining to the journals in her sent box.
“What are you doing here this time of night?”
He whirled around. Miss Cora stood in the doorway, looking like an avenging angel with her white robe cinched around her and her finger pointed straight at him. “Sonny?”
Patricia Bradley, Crosshairs
Revell Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group, © 2021. Used by permission.
Patricia Bradley is the author of Standoff, Obsession, and Crosshairs, as well as the Memphis Cold Case novels and Logan Point series. Bradley won an Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award in Romantic Suspense, a Daphne du Maurier Award, and a Touched by Love Award; she was a Carol Award finalist; and three of her books were included in anthologies that debuted on the USA Today bestseller list. She is cofounder of Aiming for Healthy Families, Inc., and she is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Sisters in Crime. Bradley makes her home in Mississippi. Learn more at www.ptbradley.com.
Revell is offering a print copy of Crosshairs by Patricia Bradley to THREE of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? What makes you want to read Crosshairs by Patricia Bradley?