Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Meet a new Author Everyday... Sandra S Kerns

Mastering the Brides by Sandra Kerns
A Masters Men Novella
117 Pages
Published: December 26, 2015
Published by: Sandra S. Kerns


Two Sisters. Threatening Calls. Mastering Fears. 

Blaze and Brooke, sisters of the Masters brothers, return home for a double wedding. Before they settle in, Brooke receives a call threatening her fiancé and Blaze receives a call from someone else doing the same. Scared but determined not to lean on their brothers, they secretly prepare for a battle while finishing last minute wedding details. Things go from bad to worse, but Blaze and Brooke have learned from the Masters, literally. They're not going down without a fight. 

If you love Christmas, romance, and a little suspense Mastering the Brides is the book for you. 

Order now to join the celebration!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US : AU : CA : UK

A special note from the Author:
I know. You’re thinking, why is she promoting a Christmas book in April. Doesn’t she know we’re tired of the cold?

To be honest, I’m not sure about you, but I am DEFINITELY tired of the cold. However, there is method to my madness of promoting a Christmas novella right now. This novella was the wrap-up book for my Masters Men Series. If you haven’t read the entire series you’ll still be able to enjoy the story because there are tidbits of information about past events/people that will basically explain the story lines. If you would like to read the other books, too, you can purchase them for a discounted price in two boxed sets (links are on my website here:     )

So, why remind you this is the last book in the series? Because there is a NEW Masters Men series starting in May and I wanted to reintroduce / introduce readers to the Masters clan before it comes out. The new series will be called Master Security (you’ll understand why when you get to the end of Mastering the Brides).

If you want to know exactly when the new books are scheduled, sign-up for my mailing list: You’ll receive 2 free books from my other series, and special offers for my readers. I hope you enjoy the challenges Brook and Blaze face trying to get their men to the altar.  


~Chapter One~

Blaze slipped her arm through her sister’s as they walked through the jet-way to the terminal at DIA. “I hope the snow holds off. I want it fresh for the weddings.”
“Me, too,” Brooke said. “Wouldn’t that be perfect?”
Blaze joined her sister in a chuckle, knowing the two hunks walking behind them probably wouldn’t agree. Glancing out the window, she feared the snow would fly before then and make their final preparations more difficult. Their flight had landed early in Denver, but even at one in the afternoon, low clouds made it darker than she was accustomed to anymore. There was only one other concern besides the weather that had her glancing sideways at her sister.
She hoped Brooke hadn’t given in to parent pressure and spilled the beans about them coming in two days before they were expected. She needed some quiet time with Lazaro before the family took over. They had both been busy with plans for upcoming dives through the new Underwater Archaeological Society that Marie had created. She knew they would soon be alone on their honeymoon, but before the wedding, she wanted some time for both of them to calm their spirits, as her sister-in-law Copper would say. However, right now she needed to make sure Brooke hadn’t ruined their plans.
“Please tell me you held firm and did not tell Mom we were getting in today.”
Brooke frowned at her. “I held firm and did not tell Mom we were getting in today.”
“I can verify,” Manus said over Brooke’s head. “I also swore my mother to secrecy.”
Lazaro wrapped his arm around Blaze’s shoulders as they exited the jet-way and entered the terminal. “Will you please stop worrying? We all know you want us flatlanders to have a couple of days to adjust to the altitude. Manus and I may not be rocket scientists, but we’re not stupid.”
Elbowing him, Blaze glared up at her handsome Conquistador. Dang, he is one handsome man, she thought with a shiver of excitement for the night ahead. Forcing her attention back to the present, she shook her head.
“You do not know my mother. She won’t give us a moment’s peace, especially you and Manus, once she gets ahold of us. I’ll bet she’s already pried recipes for your favorite foods from his mom and your brother. Then, of course, there are all the plans that she thinks Brooke and I are too inept to handle. Once we’re in Braedon, I doubt we’ll see you guys again until the wedding.”
“Speak for yourself,” Brooke said. “Mom can have the days, but not the nights. I don’t want to give him a chance to figure out what a mistake he made.”
Blaze watched Manus grin before kissing her sister’s head. “The only mistake I made was taking almost two years to look you up after we met the first time. You’re never getting rid of me now.”
“Aren’t they cute?” Lazaro said then made a choking sound.
“Stop teasing them. I think it’s sweet Manus is so gaga over my baby sister.”
“Yeah, and if I talked to you like that, you’d probably make me walk the plank.”
Blaze laughed. “True, but then, I’m not a romantic like my sister. I’m a--”
Lazaro kissed her before she could finish as they rode up the escalator. When he released her lips, Blaze slowly opened her eyes to find his delicious chocolate brown eyes staring at her.
“You promised,” he whispered. “No more negatives. You are perfect just the way you are.”
She smiled up at him. God, she loved this man. He was the most loving, thoughtful, sweet man in the world, but he was no pushover. He didn’t let her get away with anything.
“Right, thanks for the reminder. Now, off to baggage claim.”
As the four of them rode the tram to the main terminal, Blaze watched her sister and Manus sway together. He had one arm around Brooke’s waist while he held onto the rail overhead. She couldn’t remember Brooke ever trusting anyone so completely. The thought made her smile. Maybe the smile came from having Lazaro’s arms wrapped around her waist in a gentle hug.
“They really are sappy,” he whispered in her ear before kissing her neck.
“As opposed to you, who always has a hand on me if I’m in the same room?”
He chuckled and Blaze leaned her head back to see his face.
“I guess it’s true. You ruined me. I was a perfectly good free spirit and you...” he paused and Blaze raised an eyebrow. Then he smiled. “You showed me I wasn’t free, I was lost. I’m sorry it took me so long to make it official.”
Blaze turned in his arms. “Neither one of us were ready before. Your timing, as always, was perfect. I love you, Lazaro Menendez-Buffington.”
As his lips claimed hers again, Blaze heard Manus chuckle, “And he calls us sappy.” Then the music announcing their arrival at the terminal played over the speakers.
It looked like she and her sister had both found keepers. She was also thrilled that Lazaro and Manus got along now. It had taken a while for Lazaro to forgive Manus for arresting her. Granted, he’d only been doing his job and had worked hard to clear her name so it was a moot point. However, just the fact he had arrested her had been hard for Lazaro to let go.
They followed the crowd of travelers up the escalators, through the terminal, to the baggage claim carousels. While the men waited for the suitcases, Blaze and Brooke went to get coffee for all of them. Halfway to the cafe, Brooke’s phone rang.
“Who is it?” Blaze asked as her sister pulled it out of her purse.
“Tres,” she said as she hit accept and then speaker.
“Hi, Tres. What’s up?” Brooke asked.
“There’s been a change of plans, kiddo, or should I say kiddos? I know you’re there, Blaze.”
“Hey, now tell us what change you’ve made and it had better not be that you told mom and dad we’re here already or...”
“What? Do you think I’m insane? I don’t want the wrath of Blaze Collins turned on me. However, there’s a serious storm front closing in. It’s already snowing up here.”
“I might live in Florida now, but I still remember how to drive in the snow,” Blaze said rolling her eyes.
“There were plenty of icy hilly roads in Arkansas for me to keep in practice, so I’m not as rusty as Blaze,” Brooke said while Blaze ordered the coffee. They walked to the other end of the counter to wait for the drinks while Tres explained more.
“Your driving skills are not in question,” he said with a chuckle. “You being able to get here if you wait a couple of days is what concerns me. They’re forecasting almost a foot for Denver. That means even more up here. Before it gets too bad on I25, I thought you could come straight here.”
Blaze sighed. She’d really wanted the quiet before the entire family descended on them.
“I sent Ace and Izzy on a ‘Hide the Too Be Weds’ mission. They’re stocking the fridge and making beds at the garage apartment as we speak.”
“Beds, Tres?” Blaze said picking up the tray of coffee cups. “If I remember correctly there was only one bed in the apartment over the garage and, while I love my sister and her fiancé, I really don’t want to sleep with them.” Her brother’s hearty laugh made her smile in spite of the changed plans.
“Relax, Blaze, it will be fine. Last year Izzy suggested some renovations since she uses it for meeting with students. We added an office/guestroom by taking some of the living room area footage. So, no four to a bed or even a sofa bed, you’ll have your own rooms.”
“What about the altitude? Manus and Lazaro have never been in this kind of elevation. Denver is probably pushing it, but up in Braedon I’m afraid they’ll both get sick,” Blaze said as they made their way out of the shop and headed for baggage claim again, she noticed Brooke shaking her head.
“They will be fine as long as we keep them hydrated and don’t let them do anything overly taxing. If shoveling needs done, you and I take care of it. Besides, if they do get sick, I am a nurse. I know what to do. Don’t worry. We won’t need a hyperbaric chamber or anything as you would if you were coming up from a dive too quickly. I’ll make sure they are both in shape for the wedding.”
“So, you’ll do it?” Tres asked.
Blaze and Brooke both laughed.
“Oh, that was a request? I figured you’d already cancelled our hotel reservations--”
“Actually, I did,” he said. “Before you go ballistic about me using my detective status or anything else illegal, I got the information from Manus and Lazaro just in case there were any problems.”
“Yeah, right,” Brooke said and Blaze was glad she wasn’t the only one tired of the brothers thinking them incapable of taking care of themselves.
“Look, it was a good thing in the long run. If I hadn’t cancelled them, you would be paying for hotel rooms you won’t stay in. Besides, it was my back-up in case you weren’t reasonable about coming home tonight.”
Blaze rolled her eyes. “As I figured, it wasn’t a request. However, since Brooke has promised she can take care of Lazaro and Manus if they do get sick, I guess we’ll head home as soon as we can get the luggage and pick up the rentals.”
The sisters smiled when they heard Tres release a loud sigh. “Whew, I didn’t think it would be this easy.”
“Hey, we’re not there yet,” Blaze said as she saw Manus and Lazaro walking toward them with the luggage. She held up a finger to let them know to be quiet. “You don’t know what we have in store for when we see you.”
“As long as you make it up here safe, I’ll take whatever you can dish out, little girl.”
“You do know you’re going to pay for that remark, right?”
“Counting on it. Drive safe. We’ll see you in a couple of hours.”
Brooke tapped the end call button.
“What’s up?” Lazaro asked.
“A storm,” Brooke answered and Blaze saw the frown on her face.
She had never been able to stand seeing her sister unhappy. Even as children she would do whatever she had to in order to make Brooke smile. Her sister had always been too serious in Blaze’s opinion. There had already been enough discomfort on this trip.
She’d noticed Brooke looking around at the airport and on the plane. When she’d asked her about it, her sister had said she felt as if someone was watching her. Blaze had admitted to feeling the same way. They had been sitting across the aisle from each other and asked the men to switch with them, so they could sit together and discuss wedding plans. Both had eagerly agreed. They hadn’t discussed plans, but it had made it easier to talk about their uncomfortable feelings without the men hearing. They were in agreement on not telling anyone anything unless there was real trouble. They did not need to be protected and they were going to prove it to all of the Alpha males in their lives if it was the last thing they did. That thought gave Blaze a little shiver of concern, but she ignored it as she wrapped an arm around Brooke’s shoulders and hugged her.
“Brooke, I promised you we would all have some quiet time and we will. If I have to hogtie and gag our brothers to get it, I will. We have almost 48 hours before the hoards descend. I plan to loaf in front of the fire at Tres’ apartment a large portion of that time.”
Brooke’s smile returned. “I do like his fireplace. I hope Izzy bought peanut butter and graham crackers.”
“And hot cocoa!” they said together before laughing.

Manus nudged Lazaro. “Do you have any idea what’s going on?”
“Hey, we’re in foreign territory here. These two together, in Colorado, talking to their brother, then about food, I have no idea. I plan on going with the flow. It’s the only way to ride out a storm safely. I guarantee you when you get all of them together it can quickly become a hurricane.”
The girls laughed louder.
“I’m a cop. Going with the flow isn’t in my nature,” he said as they steered the girls and luggage toward the doors to wait for the rental car shuttle.
“We’re sorry,” Brooke said as she tried to catch her breath. “It was just too funny the way we both had the same thought at the same time. That hasn’t happened in a long time.”
Manus nodded. Brooke had told him stories about her and Blaze growing up. He knew they were almost as close as their triplet brothers were to each other. Several times since he and Brooke had been together Blaze would call a second before Brooke picked up her phone to call her sister. It was almost freaky, but he didn’t say anything because it always put a big smile on Brooke’s face and he loved it when she smiled.
The automatic doors opened and frigid air hit them in the face. The girls squealed in delight. Manus and Lazaro shook their heads at the girls’ reaction, releasing the luggage, they zipped the jackets the girls had bought them, and pulled gloves from their pockets.
“Okay you two crazy people. Tell us what’s going on to distract me from the ridiculous temperature,” Manus said. He pulled Brooke close both to hear her explanation and for warmth. When she wrapped her arms around him while they walked, he didn’t complain.
“There’s a storm coming in faster than expected. The snow already started up in Braedon and Tres is worried we won’t be able to get there if we don’t head straight there,” she said.
“Why can’t we wait it out here? Is the storm supposed to last forever?” Lazaro asked.
“No, but getting all the roads cleared in a timely manner could make it seem that way. With Braedon being up the canyon, it can be hard to get to after a big snow. He said they’re predicting a foot for Denver. Denver with a foot of snow isn’t a lot of fun. Believe me. I went to school here and there was a blizzard one year. It was not a good time.”
They made it to the shuttle stop and the couples hugged each other while he and Lazaro stood with their backs to the wind to protect the girls.
Lazaro rested his chin on top of Blaze’s head and looked at Manus. “I hope that shuttle comes soon. I’m freezing.”
Manus watched Blaze pull her phone out.
“It’s barely,” she manipulated her phone and paused. “Oh, yeah, never mind. It’s cold.”
Manus decided he didn’t need to know how cold. He took a drink of coffee, released the suitcase, and wrapped both arms around Brooke. “You like this weather?”
Brooke didn’t answer, but snuggled closer. He decided he liked this weather too. Granted, he would like to be snuggling inside with a fire blazing, but he could see the benefits.
The shuttle pulled up. Several other people were waiting and no one wasted time. They all loaded up as fast as possible. As the driver prepared to pull away, Manus felt Brooke tense beside him. Glancing at her, he watched her glance over her shoulder and then scan the people on the shuttle.
“What’s wrong? Did you forget something?”
She shook her head. “No. It just felt like someone was watching me. Actually, I’ve had the feeling for several days.”
Manus frowned at her. “Why didn’t you say something?”
Brooke shrugged and he ground his teeth. After everything she’d been through before him and then with him earlier in the year, he would think she’d take her intuition more seriously. He looked out the window behind her as well. He didn’t see anyone suspicious. No one remained at the shuttle stop where everyone had waited, but he could feel she was still tense. Something had spooked her.
“No one from here, other than your brothers knows we’re here yet, right?” She nodded. “The only people I can think of who would have anything against you are in prison. So, who would be following you here? I mean besides every man whose blood hasn’t frozen in his veins.”
She glanced up and offered him a small smile. It reminded him of the smile she used whenever she tried to convince him she was fine but wasn’t.
“You’re right. I don’t know what I was thinking.”
Manus glanced across the aisle at Lazaro and Blaze. Lazaro met his gaze. Something was wrong. He could see it in the set of the man’s eyes and the tightness of his jaw. When Lazaro gave him a short nod, Manus knew he was right. They would have to get away from the girls for a minute so he could find out what the man thought. If Brooke was already spooked, how could they leave the girls alone? Then he remembered Brooke mentioning a Dunkin Donuts shop on the road out of the airport.
“You mentioned a Dunkin Donuts shop on the way out of the airport, right?” he asked Brooke. She nodded. “Why don’t we stop and get some for the ride? Tres said two hours and the snack from that plane ride is not enough to keep my stomach happy for that long.”
“Mmmm, yes please,” Brooke and Blaze both said with real smiles.
Manus relaxed a little. It couldn’t be that bad if distracting her was that easy. Right?

Meet Sandra Kerns~
Sandra is the author of three series, totaling 18 books so far. She writes contemporary romantic-suspense. The majority of her stories are located in Colorado because it possesses such a diverse selection of heroes and heroines. In less than a minute you can see a cowboy, an engineer, a lawyer, or a stay-at-home mom/dad. The combinations of characters keeps her very busy. You can also find her characters visiting New York or finding trouble in Florida. These two locations pop up because she grew up in central New York and enjoys vacations at Cocoa Beach.
When she’s not writing you might find her at a sewing machine. Learning to sew at age seven, she enjoyed making clothes for herself and family for years. Now she prefers making quilts for family and friends, though occasionally she will whip out a skirt or two.
Before writing full time she had various jobs. Her employment started as a substitute church secretary when she was in high school and ended as a faculty assistant (aka Copy Lady) in a high school in Colorado with stints as bank secretary, fabric store clerk, and temp secretary in between.
She lives in northern Colorado with her husband and Rudy, their rescue dog from Japan. Her sons are grown and move around the country, but still provide endless inspiration and support for her writing.

Connect with Sandra~

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