Kelsey Browning writes sass kickin’ love stories and cozy Southern mysteries. Originally from a Texas town smaller than the ones she writes about, Kelsey has also lived in the Middle East and Los Angeles, proving she’s either adventurous or downright nuts.
Eden Durant hasn't always been Eden Durant. She's made a fresh start in Shelbyville, Texas, far from her mother's notoriety. Running the Paradise Garden Café is as much excitement as Eden wants—or it was, until she meets Beck Childress. Although he's the one man who could expose her past, she's willing to open up enough to see if he might be her future.
Chief Deputy Childress is determined to get to know the real Eden, when he isn't busy cleaning up after the sheriff and running in the election to replace him. When several men fall sick after eating in Eden's café, he investigates even as her mysterious past raises both his suspicions and his protective instincts.
As their relationship heats up, so do the pressures of Beck's campaign. When Eden's secrets are revealed, jeopardizing his dream of becoming sheriff, he'll need to choose: serve and protect the town he loves or the woman who makes it home.
He strode to the cooler, poured white wine into a cup and grabbed a beer for himself. When he turned to head for the porch, Eden was standing behind him, holding up a hooker-lipstick-red toilet seat and wearing a smile that was trying to advance into her eyes but not completely succeeding.
“Trade you,” she said. “Thought maybe you could use this.”
“Use it for what?” Still, he handed her the wine and took the seat, flipped it over a couple of times as if it might include instructions.
“Don’t you know what it is?” She sipped her wine, and that smile finally made it to her eyes.
“Pretty sure I have one on all the toilets in my house.”
“Not like this one.”
“True, mine are white.”
She shook her head in a slow and exaggerated movement. “I’m so disappointed in you.”
“I always appreciate a gift, especially one from a beautiful woman.” Granted, he’d rather she’d brought him French onion dip and a bag of chips.
She wandered toward the horseshoe pit and waved the guys back over from where they were crowded around the picnic table. “Guys, surely one of you can tell Beck what this is.”
“Looks like the top of a shit—” Cameron caught Allie’s glare, “—uh…commode.”
“Close, but no.”
“Hey, close counts in horseshoes,” he protested.
She turned to Mac who shrugged and said, “I pretty much use mine for what Cameron said.”
Jamie, however, loped over and wrapped an arm around Eden’s shoulders. “I told Roxanne you were a woman of untold depths and possibly a connoisseur of the ridiculous. Damn, I love being right.”
Beck had never met an attorney who didn’t. He glared at Jamie’s arm around Eden, but the dickhead just grinned until he looked like a high-priced jack-o-lantern. “Feel free to enlighten the rest of us, Your Legalness.”
Jamie grabbed the toilet seat and held it by the rounded end, thumb on top and four fingers below. Lightning struck Beck’s brain, and sure enough, Jamie tossed the damn thing like a metal horseshoe, aiming at the far end of the pit.
Everyone hooted and laughed, including Beck.
Eden turned to him, her cheeks full of color and her eyes sharp and sparkling. “The other three are still in my truck.”
“Well, then let’s go get them.” Damned if he couldn’t fall in love with a woman who gave him a set of redneck horseshoes.