Genre: Western Romance

The Devil You Know by Jo Goodman: Excerpt and Giveaway!

Posted May 4, 2016 by Jonetta in Blog Tour | | 3 Comments

The Devil You Know by Jo Goodman: Excerpt and Giveaway!

The Devil You Know by Jo Goodman: Excerpt and Giveaway!The Devil You Know by Jo Goodman
Published by Berkley on May 3, 2016
Genres: Historical Romance, Western Romance
Pages: 416
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After a horse drags him through the countryside, Israel McKenna awakes bruised and battered in a field in Pancake Valley, Colorado. He can recall where he came from and where he was going, but the memory of how he came to be on the Pancake homestead eludes him. He’s certain he did something wrong to deserve such a harsh punishment—and so is the beautiful woman who reluctantly comes to his aid.


Wilhelmina “Willa” Pancake must focus on running her family’s ranch. With Israel’s hazy memory, she is unsure if she can trust him, let alone handle the budding attraction between them. And as men fight to steal her land and the truth about Israel’s past rides toward them, love is a risk she cannot easily take.



Willa parted the faded blue gingham curtains and peered out between the panels. Well, she thought, surveying the moonlit scene that confronted her, she had found John Henry and solved the mystery of why the traitorous dog had not made a sound.
He was cradled like a baby in Israel McKenna’s arms having his belly rubbed and no doubt being told what a very good dog he was.

She wanted to bang her forehead against the glass but feared that the percussion would wake Annalea. Instead, she carefully raised the window a few inches and knelt on the floor so she could speak through the opening.

“What are you doing here?” she whispered. “And don’t tell me you’re returning John Henry. I won’t believe you. You probably stole him in the first place.”

Israel stepped closer to the window. “I want to talk to you.” His dark brows lifted a fraction. “Did you just growl at me?”
She thought she might have, but she was not going to admit it. “I’m coming out,” she hissed. “And I’m taking John Henry back!”
She closed the window with more authority than she’d intended and immediately looked over her shoulder to see if Annalea was stirring. She was not. Willa rose, and the curtains fell back into place, but not before Israel snared her attention with his careless and charming grin.

She quelled an urge to stick her out tongue because it was immature, and lacked dignity. That, and he could no longer see it anyway.

Willa shrugged into her heavy woolen robe and belted it tight. The hem of her flannel nightgown fluttered around her ankles as she hurried to the kitchen to find her boots. She sat down to yank them on and then bounced to her feet as though she had springs in her knees and was out the door moments after that.
Israel was not waiting for her on the back porch. Was he still loitering outside her window? Willa ignored the steps and jumped off the side of the porch and walked around the corner of the house. Israel was still there, although he had moved about four yards back from the window. She supposed that was his idea of being discreet.

Willa employed long strides to reach him, and when she did, she held out her arms for John Henry. One of the hound’s long, black-tipped, brown ears was draped over Israel’s arm, and his belly was still exposed. He would probably howl if Israel passed him over now. Willa dropped her hands to her sides and was immediately beset by a shiver. She folded her arms in front of her and tucked her hands under her armpits. In another moment, her teeth would begin to chatter.

“I’m here. What is it?”

He looked her over. “We can’t really talk here, can we? You’ll freeze.”

“Exactly my thought. Hand over John Henry so I can go back inside.”

“I’ll put John Henry in the house, but you and I are going to talk in the barn.”

“I’m not going into the barn with you.”

“Why not? We were there this afternoon.”

“That’s right. It was afternoon, not the middle of the night.”

“It’s not the middle.” He stopped scratching John Henry’s belly to put up a hand to halt her protest. “All right. I’ll concede that it’s night. My point is that it is a difference without distinction. We’ll have privacy and warmth in the barn just as we had earlier.”

“Yes, but—” She hesitated, glanced warily in the direction of the barn, which loomed like a great black hulk against the night sky, and then shook her head. “It’s not a good idea. Whatever it is, it can wait until morning.”

“Not if I am going to be able to sleep tonight.”

If he had reported this to her as a complaint, Willa would have summarily dismissed it, but it was not issued as a grievance, only as a matter of fact, and since she had some experience with sleepless nights of late, she had a measure of sympathy for this state. Some of that must have shown in her expression because he angled his head toward the barn and lifted his brows once more in question.

“All right,” she said at last. “But let me put John Henry in the house first.”

“I don’t think that’s a good idea. John Henry should come with us. You can take him back when we’re finished. Besides, if someone wakes and wonders where you are, you can say you were looking for him.”

It seemed reasonable, but that only made Willa question the soundness of her thinking. “I don’t think anyone is going to miss me,” she said, falling into step beside Israel. “Pa was tippling last night, so he won’t wake until coffee’s on, maybe not even then. And Annalea slept through you scratching at the window.”

“That was John Henry.” Israel took one of the hound’s short forepaws in his hand and waved it at Willa.

A bubble of laughter swelled in her throat and she snorted softly to cover it. “I don’t understand you,” she said when she could trust herself to speak. “Is there anything you take seriously?”

“Is there anything you don’t?”



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About Jo Goodman

To find characters to illustrate my first family saga, I cut out models from the Sears catalogue. I was in fourth grade, but it was a start. In seventh grade I wrote a melodrama about two orphan sisters, one of whom was pregnant. There was also a story about a runaway girl with the unlikely name of Strawberry and one about mistaken identities and an evil blind date. My supportive, but vaguely concerned parents, sighed with relief when I announced I was going to write children’s books. They bought me an electric typewriter and crossed their fingers, but somehow PASSION’S BRIDE came out. No one was really surprised.

I graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a major in biology and a minor in chemistry and some notion that I would do marine research. Years of competitive swimming didn’t help me anticipate seasickness. A career change seemed in order. I began working with adolescents and families, first as a childcare worker and later, after graduating from West Virginia University with a master’s degree in counseling, as a therapist. I am currently the executive director of a child caring/mental health agency and find my work and my writing often compliment each other. One grounds me in reality and the other offers a break from it.

Audio Review: Atonement by B. J. Daniels

Audio Review: Atonement by B. J. Daniels

Posted January 21, 2016 by Jonetta in Book Review | 0 Comments

    Deputy Sheriff Dillon Lawson’s identical twin brother, Ethan, died a year ago. So, when Tessa Winters shows up seven months pregnant and claiming Ethan’s the father, color him skeptical. And, she was convinced he was really Ethan. Talk about your rocky starts.   I really enjoyed how the story unfolded and their relationship developed. Trust was a huge issue, as you would expect, and it was a slow build. There were layered elements of mystery and suspense, making this a real puzzler. Additionally, one of the unresolved stories from the last book was addressed in this one. This is very definitely a series that must be read in order as there are continuing story arcs.   One other thing I’m enjoying about the […]

Audio Review: Redemption by B. J. Daniels

Audio Review: Redemption by B. J. Daniels

Posted July 30, 2015 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

       Quick summary Jack French just spent two years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. He’s back in Beartooth and on his way into town, he encounters Kate LaFond, the new owner of the town cafe, being assaulted. When he comes to her rescue, she’s not grateful at all as Kate’s used to taking care of herself. This pretty much defines their relationship going forward. Kate’s hiding a few secrets and has a murky history. Jack’s on a mission to clear his name. Their paths will inevitably converge.   What I enjoyed I really liked Jack and his laid back manner, especially as he seemed to instinctively know how to handle the often prickly, independent Kate. Her story was presented in a […]

Who Wants to Marry a Cowboy by Abigail Sharpe

Who Wants to Marry a Cowboy by Abigail Sharpe

Posted October 18, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

If you you’re a fan of the TV show, The Batchelor, this story will probably be a fun read for you.     Ainsley Fairfax comes from a wealthy South Carolina family with a matriarch from hell. Her mother is adamant that she’s going on a cruise with Edward, the man of her choosing, and work on their nuptials when they return (her command was that they get engaged). Ainsley schemes with her black sheep sister to switch places and take her trip to a cowgirls weekend in Wyoming. It’s two weeks of competition with seven other women for the attentions of Riley Pommer, eldest of the four siblings owning the ranch. Of course, some of the women show their catty and nasty sides once […]

Amanda’s Thoughts on One Heart to Win by Johanna Lindsey

Amanda’s Thoughts on One Heart to Win by Johanna Lindsey

Posted October 17, 2014 by Amanda in Book Review | 3 Comments

As you know, I am a Johanna Lindsey fan. I own every book. I lean towards her medieval and Viking era novels, but her cowboy books are awesome too. One Heart to Win in her 50th romance novel! Though this book wasn’t as strong as some of her previous work and was a bit of a historical romance cliché, it was still a lovely read. The Warrens and Callahans have been locked in a land/water feud for three generations. As hot blood ranchers, neither side is willing to back down. So, naturally fiery Tiffany Warren and smooth talker, Hunter Callahan should get married. Tiffany was raised in New York and wants absolutely nothing to do with her father’s feud. Nor does she want anything to […]

Well, Once Wasn’t Enough! Once Tempted by Laura Moore

Well, Once Wasn’t Enough! Once Tempted by Laura Moore

Posted October 16, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 4 Comments

  Quick summary Events planner Tess Casari packs up all of her belongings and heads out west to California (from Queens) to start anew following the painful demise of her marriage and later, her husband’s death. She ends up at the Silver Creek Ranch (sort of an eeny-meeny-miney-mo action with a map). Ward Knowles, the oldest son of the family owning the guest ranch, is the first person she meets and it definitely wasn’t insta-love.   The heart of the story Tess is hired on by Ward’s mother as her personal assistant and later the events planner for the ranch. She thinks he’s arrogant (he is a bit) and he thinks she’s too much the city girl (she is). Publicly they trade barbs but privately […]

Saved by the Rancher by Jennifer Ryan

Saved by the Rancher by Jennifer Ryan

Posted October 13, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 0 Comments

I’m going to sound like I can’t decide if I like this book or not. Well, that’s because there were parts I liked a lot and others that had me raising my eyebrows.   First, what I liked. It’s romantic suspense involving cowboys on a ranch and a heroine on the run from a truly diabolical ex-husband. Jenna’s fear was well earned and one of the most chilling aspects of the book is when we experience the attacks from her point of view. It was horrific, awful and scary. When she lands at Jack’s ranch, I breathed a sigh of relief on her behalf. He and his family were just good people and even though it could be sappy at times, they were a wonderful […]

Review: Big Sky Wedding by Linda Lael Miller

Review: Big Sky Wedding by Linda Lael Miller

Posted March 18, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

  I’ve wanted to read Brylee Parrish’s story since she was left at the altar by Hutch Carmody in the second book of this series (Big Sky Mountain). She’s now a businesswoman to be reckoned with as she’s the head of a highly successful gift distribution company. But, she’s still very much alone and in a small town, it’s hard to redefine yourself when everyone remembers your wedding day that didn’t happen.   Zane Sutton seemed on the surface to be an unlikely match for Brylee. He’s a famous Hollywood western actor though his roots were in the rodeo circuit. What no one seems to understand is the Hollywood lifestyle doesn’t fit him well and his heart is in Montana at the property he purchased […]