DEAD HEAT: Excerpt

on April 22, 2014

It’s Tuesday, which means we’re touring Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. I plan on blogging about our trip next week! I would have loved to have done a journal as we went, but I’m not bringing my laptop with me.

Max Revere and Lucy Kincaid are distinctly different characters. I love it, because I don’t want to get bored with either one, but sometimes going from Max to Lucy and back again can be a challenge. Right now, I’m writing a novella for Hit and Run, book two of the Moreno and Hart Mystery Series I’m co-writing with Laura Griffin. I love being able to write something completely different when I put one book aside before I start the next book. Why? It cleans the palette, so to speak. I can put Max out of my head before I start in on the next Lucy book.

Gross_largeSpeaking of something different and totally cool, my friend Andrew Gross has a new thriller out this week! Everything to Lose has an amazing cover (I love all of Andy’s covers!) and some fantastic early reviews. What I love about Andy’s books is that he generally takes ordinary people and puts them in extraordinary situations … making for very real, very heart-pounding thrillers. Last year, I gave my mom one of Andy’s books and she asked for more — and if both me and my mom likes a book, you know it’s good!

BOOKLIST gave Everything to Lose a STARRED REVIEW and said:

“Gross skillfully keeps his plot moving forward through scenes of emotional richness, then jittery suspense. The characters are pushed by choices they make, not just the demands of the plot.”

DEAD HEAT — book 8 in the Lucy Kincaid series — will be out June 3, 2014.

RT Book Reviews gave DEAD HEAT 4.5 stars and said:

Lucy Kincaid is living her dream of being an FBI agent, but a new dark, shocking case tests all of her developing skills. Lucy and her companions are taken on a twisted journey while they attempt to bring down a crime lord’s empire. As an added bonus, Brennan brings mysterious mercenary Kane Rogan into the mix. Gut-wrenching and chilling, this is a story you won’t soon forget!

DeadHeat-1DEAD HEAT, as I mentioned last week, reboots the Lucy Kincaid series. Sean and Lucy are in San Antonio and I’m introducing a new team of characters. But I thought I’d share this opening to Chapter Seven (proofs! Please excuse any typos.) Sean and Lucy are in their element together, and very happy.

Excerpt from Chapter Seven of DEAD HEAT, book 8 in the Lucy Kincaid series:

Lucy stretched in bed early Sunday morning, dawn cutting through the windows of the master bedroom she shared with Sean.

“Good morning, princess,” Sean said and kissed her neck.

She snuggled into him. Sean’s nearly naked body generated intense heat. How did he do that? She could wear flannel pajamas and be freezing. The best thing about living in San Antonio was the weather. It would be too hot in the summer but she’d take the heat of Texas over the cold of DC any day.

“I have to go into the office this morning.”

“Not for a couple hours. It’s only six.”

She groaned. “Why is it that no matter how late I’ve been up I can’t sleep past six?”

He pulled her to him and grinned. “We don’t have to get up.” He nuzzled her neck, planting light kisses over the sensitive skin behind her ear, down her neck, until his mouth reached her breast and she sighed.

“I feel decadent,” she whispered.

“You feel perfect.”

Lucy closed her eyes as Sean woke up her body. Slow, easy morning sex was exactly what she needed to feel alive.

But it was more than the comfortable merging of her body with Sean’s; it was him, the man who’d seen her at her best and her worst, the man who loved her unconditionally. Who had moved cross-country for her, who had captured her heart when she didn’t even know she had a heart to give. One look, she melted. One touch, she sighed.

“Sean,” she murmured, her breath catching, as their rhythm, so perfect, so in tune, brought them both up and over the edge.

He held her close to him, his hard body wrapping her tight. “I could go back to sleep about now,” he whispered.

“Me, too,” she said. “Don’t let me.”

She held him as he held her, and she savored the few moments of peace they had before the day officially began.

Her stomach growled.

“Lucia Kincaid!” Sean said, shock on his face.

She buried her face in his chest, halfway between laughter and mortification. “I can’t believe you heard that.”

“The neighbors could hear that grumble.” He rolled her on top of him and kissed her. “Go, shower, I’ll make breakfast.”

“You don’t have to do that,” she began.

He lightly slapped her naked bottom. “It’s an order.”

“Bossy now, aren’t we?”

He kissed her again, longer, teasing. “Go, before I keep you in bed all morning.”

She smiled and crawled out of bed, stretching. He watched her, his head propped up on his hand, grinning. “You look at me like that and I won’t get the breakfast you promised.”

“You stretch again like that and neither of us will care.” He got up and kissed her again, his hands molding her body like clay. “Go. Now,” he said, his voice rough around the edges.

She reluctantly pulled away and went to shower. When she stepped back into the bedroom, Sean wasn’t there. She dressed in black slacks and a simple white top with black blazer, pulled her thick hair back into a wide clip, and put on just a touch of makeup. She carried her low-heeled black boots downstairs, her stomach growling again at the aroma coming from the kitchen. “Your cooking skills have improved,” she commented as she walked in.

Sean was wearing a blue-and-white-checked apron and nothing else.

“Dear God, Sean.”

“You like?” He grinned mischievously as he set a plate of scrambled eggs with ham and cheese on her plate.

“A half-naked man cooking for me in a beautiful house after good morning sex?”

He frowned. “Just good?”

She kissed him. “Very good. Extremely good.”

“Hmm, we’re going to have to work on that. Tonight.”

He poured her coffee, then helped himself to a plate of eggs. Lucy loved watching Sean. Not just because he looked like the Irish version of a Greek god, but because he enjoyed life. From the little things like cooking for her to the big things, like his work.

“Are you okay?” she asked, surprised that she’d spoken out loud.

“Okay about what?”

“I don’t know—you’ve done everything for me since we’ve moved here, and I haven’t given you anything in return.”

“You just gave me ‘very good’ morning sex.”

“You know what I mean.”

“No, I don’t.”

“Are you happy?”

“Where is this coming from?”

“I don’t know. Just—last night—you were in your element.”

He blanched. “I was not in my element. I was surrounded by cops.”

“But you were helping. Your instincts—they’re right on. And then I was thinking about Patrick, and how good you and he worked together, and then—”

He put his hands together in a time-out gesture. “I’m happy. I wake up every morning with you. This is exactly what I want.”

She frowned. “Okay.”

“You think I’m lying?”

“No, I just know you miss it.”

“Miss DC? Definitely not.”

“Miss the excitement. RCK sent you all over the world fixing problems.”

“There are plenty of problems to fix right here in the Lone Star State.” He picked up her plate and his and put them on the counter. He took her hands and squeezed. “I don’t know where all these insecurities are coming from, Luce, but I’m telling you now, and I’ll tell you every day if I have to, I love you. My life is where your life is. Hell, I can go back to designing video games again if I want.”

Her brows dipped in surprise. “You want to design video games?”

He shrugged. “Not really, but it’s fun. And I’m working out a consulting relationship with RCK. Not working for Duke, but being hired case by case.”


“I was serious yesterday about billing them. I’m going to talk to JT later this week. With Nora on bed rest, I don’t want Duke thinking about anything but her and the baby.”

“Okay.” She kissed him. “I don’t know how late I’ll be, but I’ll call you.”

“Maybe I’ll make dinner for you.”

“Breakfast and dinner?” She kissed him again, this time lingering over his lips. “You must want something in return.”

“Only you.” Sean smiled. “But I’ll think of something very fun we can do that involves you, me, and water. Clothing optional.”

For more information about DEAD HEAT and links to purchase, visit my webpage.