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The Texan

Cover of The Texan

The Texan

Bitter Creek Series, Book 2
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In this breathtaking novel, New York Times bestselling author Joan Johnston weaves a beguiling tale of two feuding families--the Blackthornes and the Creeds--and of two extraordinary people: loner Owen...
In this breathtaking novel, New York Times bestselling author Joan Johnston weaves a beguiling tale of two feuding families--the Blackthornes and the Creeds--and of two extraordinary people: loner Owen...
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Description-
  • In this breathtaking novel, New York Times bestselling author Joan Johnston weaves a beguiling tale of two feuding families--the Blackthornes and the Creeds--and of two extraordinary people: loner Owen Blackthorne and beautiful, headstrong Bayleigh Creed, irresistibly drawn to each other despite the desperate odds against their love.

    Owen Blackthorne is a lone wolf, a man who doesn't need anyone. Then Bayleigh Creed appears on his doorstep, demanding his help in locating her missing brother. Together they head into the desolate West Texas wilderness, a Blackthorne and a Creed, mortal enemies obliged to join forces to survive. Neither counts on the unwanted attraction that draws them together, or the bitter truths that will force them apart--until the ruthless wilderness compels them to make life-and-death choices between family and duty and love.



    From the Paperback edition.
Excerpts-
  • From the book Owen Blackthorne stepped into the Armadillo Bar and found trouble waiting for him. "Damn that Creed kid," he muttered.Luke Creed was arguing with the bartender, who was refusing to serve him. The kid should have known better, since he was three years shy of the legal drinking age in Texas. The teenager wore baggy jeans and an oversized black T-shirt that did nothing to hide the Texas-sized chip on his narrow shoulders. His brown hair was cut in short, youthful spikes, but his desperate brown eyes were ages older, angry and bitter and disillusioned.

    The Creed kid had been in and out of trouble constantly over the past eighteen months since his father had been murdered. He blamed the Blackthornes -- one and all -- for his father's death. Since there was nothing the kid could do to hurt the powerful family that was the source of his grief, he took out his frustration on the rest of the world.

    Owen stepped up to the bar, letting Luke get a good look at the silver badge on his shirt that announced the arrival of a Texas Ranger.

    The kid quickly made it clear he wasn't impressed by the badge -- or the man wearing it. He turned on Owen and snarled, "Everywhere I go you Blackthornes turn up LIKE a bad smell."

    Owen ordered a beer from the bartender, at the same time eyeing the boy in the mirror behind the bar, which was lined with twinkling Christmas tree lights year round. In a low voice he said, "Take it easy, kid."

    Luke puffed up LIKE a banty rooster and said, "Go to hell." He turned to the bartender, his hands pressed flat on the bar. "I'm thirsty. How about that drink?"

    Before the bartender could respond, Owen laid a dollar on the bar and said, "I'm buying. He'll have a Coke."

    "Forget it," Luke said. "I'm not thirsty anymore."

    "Then maybe you should leave," Owen suggested.

    "You and what army are gonna make me?" the kid shot back.

    Owen felt his adrenaline begin to pump. He hadn't come in here looking for a fight, and the last thing he wanted to do was arrest Luke Creed. He knew what it was LIKE to rage against circumstances over which you had no control. He knew what it was LIKE to hurt inside because someone you cared for was gone forever.

    Maybe the kid was entitled to hate Blackthornes. It was Owen's mother who'd caused the death of Luke's father. Because there'd been no proof of what she'd done that would hold up in court, Eve Blackthorne had ended up in a sanitarium instead of jail. Hell. No one said life was fair.

    The bartender set an icy bottle of Pearl, dripping with condensation, in front of Owen. Before he could pick it up, the Creed kid bumped it hard with his elbow. It toppled and fell, shattering on the sawdusted cement floor.

    Owen swore as he jumped back to avoid the shards of broken glass and the yeasty splatter of foaming beer.

    The kid sneered at him in the mirror and said, "Oops."

    The bar got so quiet Owen could hear every word of the whispery Western ballad Wynonna was singing on the jukebox. He knew the patrons were hoping for a showdown. Owen was determined not to give them one.

    He shoved the broken glass aside with his boot and stepped up to the bar. "Another beer," he said.

    Luke turned his back to the bar, leaned his elbows on the laminated surface, and set one booted foot on the brass footrail, daring Owen to do something in retaliation. Anything to give him an excuse to strike out.

    Owen figured the situation was about as bad as it could get. Then it got worse.

    He saw the kid's eyes go wide, then narrow, and followed their focus to the door, WHERE his brother Clay was standing in the entrance to the bar.

    He and Clay were...
About the Author-
  • Joan Johnston is the bestselling, award-winning author of many historical romances and contemporary romance novels. She received a master of arts degree in theater from the University of Illinois and graduated with honors from the University of Texas School of Law at Austin. She is currently a full-time writer living in Colorado.



Reviews-
  • Romantic Times "Joan Johnston continually gives us everything we want ... fabulous details and atmosphere, memorable characters, a story that you wish would never end, and lots of tension and sensuality."
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    Random House Publishing Group
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Bitter Creek Series, Book 2
Joan Johnston
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Bitter Creek Series, Book 2
Joan Johnston
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