When Shelby Holt convinces a friend to work at Wildhorse Pass tourist ranch, she never imagines he will die there. The police say Michael’s death was accidental, but Shelby doesn’t believe it. Haunted by guilt, she puts her academic career on hold to investigate.
Just back from the Middle East, Chad Graham is guilt-ridden over Michael’s death too. He poses as a ranch hand at Wildhorse Pass to investigate the woman claiming his cousin’s death is suspicious. Were the police wrong? Or is Shelby hiding something?
Shelby knows she can’t trust her heart, but when it comes to Chad, she can’t trust her head either. He looks uncannily like Michael. Yet even as their distrust deepens, sensual attraction simmers between them. The closer Shelby and Chad get to answers—and to each other—the closer they get to danger…and to a killer who will stop at nothing to avoid discovery.
Reviews for The Doubting Heart
2014 Readers’ Crown Finalist
“This is another fast moving, page turning tale….Gayle has a delicate touch with her character’s damaged psyches…she crafts women who become stronger and independent.” — The Muse Unleashed
“I usually do not expect a complex plot in a romance or romantic suspense novel. It is usually quite straightforward and predictable. But do not expect such from this series. There are always layers of secrets that unfold slowly to build up tension among its readers. So just when I thought that I had it figured out, the author threw something new at me.” – b00kr3vi3ws
Excerpt from The Doubting Heart
Shelby didn’t slow down to appreciate the sights and smells of southern New Mexico’s late spring splendor. But the broad, naked back bent over the water trough? Surely she could spare a moment to stop and appreciate that.
She lowered her gaze, allowing it to linger on his hips, admiring the way the faded denim gently hugged the firm, rounded buttocks before falling over what she imagined were strong, powerful thighs. Then he raised his head and she was treated to a glorious view of glistening droplets of water coursing down his back, past where his waist narrowed, to disappear beneath the waistband of his jeans.
Wow! The word reverberated through her mind and her skin glowed warm at the sight. She smiled, bemused by her reaction to the unknown man.
Well, it has been a while and there’s nothing wrong with looking.
He shook his head and turned towards her. The shimmering spray momentarily impeded her view of his face, then the mist fell away and everything began to move in slow motion. Her gut twisted painfully and she gasped for air.
“Hello,” he said, moving towards her, not seeming the least bit self-conscious about finding himself the object of her stare.
It can’t be! Her mind tried to make sense of what she was seeing.
He was taller, heavier—in all the right places—younger. His hair was a darker brown and longer. He was unshaven, an affectation she generally abhorred, but on him the dark stubble added an unexpected measure of sensual intrigue. The line of his chin was stronger, too, and his mouth lacked the self-deprecating smile. But his eyes.… Dark swaths of eyebrow added to their intensity and she couldn’t look away from their penetrating gray stare. Oh God, he has Michael’s eyes!