Monday, November 11, 2013

The Latest Bodyguards of L.A. County Release and a Giveaway

It’s always a pleasure to welcome author Cate Beauman back to Thoughts in Progress. Today she visits to tell us about the latest release in her Bodyguards of L.A. County series, WAITING FOR WREN.

05 - Waiting for Wren Cover reveal and PromotionalAs an added bonus, Cate is sharing an excerpt from the new release and offering 3 eBook copies as giveaways. Please see the end of the post for more details.

Here’s a brief synopsis of WAITING FOR WREN

When the past and present collide…
       Wren Cooke has everything she’s ever wanted—a thriving career as one of LA’s top interior designers and a home she loves. Business trips, mockups, and her demanding clientele keep her busy, almost too busy to notice Ethan Cooke Security’s gorgeous Close Protection Agent, Tucker Campbell.
       Jaded by love and relationships in general, Wren wants nothing to do with the hazel-eyed stunner and his heart-stopping grins, but Tucker is always in her way. When Wren suddenly finds herself bombarded by a mysterious man’s unwanted affections, she’s forced to turn to Tucker for help.
       As Wren’s case turns from disturbing to deadly, Tucker whisks her away to his mountain home in Utah. Haunted by memories and long-ago tragedies, Tucker soon realizes his past and Wren’s present are colliding. With a killer on the loose and time running out, Tucker must discover a madman’s motives before Wren becomes his next victim. 

Here’s Cate to tell us about working on WAITING FOR WREN.

As I have discussed with previous book launches, music plays a huge part in my writing process. I typically listen to Pandora or YouTube and compile a collection of songs that I feel represent my characters or the situations they face as the novel unfolds. 

Here are a few of the songs that I had on “repeat” while I created Tucker and Wren’s story!

The soundtrack, of sorts, for WAITING FOR WREN:

· Gone, Gone, Gone by Phillip Phillips
· Lego House by Ed Sheeran
· Wanted by Hunter Hayes
· What Would Happen If We Kissed by Meredith Brooks
· Trying Not to Love You by Nickelback
· Beneath Your Beautiful by Labrinth Ft. Emeli Sande
· I Hate How Much I Love You by Rhianna Ft. NeYo
· Be Still by The Fray
· All Along by Remedy Drive
· Clarity by Zedd
· Mirrors by Justin Timberlake
· To Build A Home by Cinematic Orchestra

Now Cate shares an excerpt from WAITING FOR WREN

Wren pulled out of the gate and started the long drive to the Palisades through Thursday night rush hour. JT saved her butt—big time. He was a sweetheart, the type of man a woman could settle down with and depend on. It was too damn bad she wasn’t interested. He was certainly intelligent and attractive; he just wasn’t her type—not that she actually had a type, per se. “A type” was meant for those looking to find a perfect partner to spend their life with. “Perfect” didn’t exist, and rarely did a lifetime with one person. Marriage was a crapshoot, a contractual joke that worked until someone got itchy. Then it turned into a nightmare where said “perfect partners” fought over who got to keep the potted fern in divorce court, or worse, they stayed together and cheated and lied year after year. She wanted nothing to do with the bondage of marriage—never had.
       She rolled to a stop at the light, and her mind wandered to Tucker and their last conversation at the gala. Conceited jerk. Even as she shook her head in disdain, he consumed her thoughts. He was there—almost always—distracting her. She had hoped the chaos of her six-day trip would lessen his affect on her, but that didn’t appear to be the case. Those eyes and that slow grin of his were lodged in her brain like a thorn. Tucker Campbell definitely wasn’t her type. Despite what he thought, they were not mixed up.
       Desperate for a distraction, she lifted her phone from the passenger seat and pressed Patrick’s number on her speed dial.
       “Patrick Stone.”
       “Welcome home.”
       “Did Lenora Cartwright get a hold of you?”
       She groaned. “Which time?”
       “Do you think we can bring her up on harassment charges? I mean really, Wren. The woman’s impossible.”
       “You’re not telling me anything I don’t already know. I told her I don’t have her mockup ready for the pool house.” She chuckled at Patrick’s quick intake of breath. “I’m pacifying her with pallets, swatches, and furniture magazines. I have to believe that’s bought me some time. My plan is to punch it out first thing in the morning.”
       “The mockup or her?”
       “Tough call. What’s my schedule looking like for tomorrow?”
       “Jammed full as usual, darling.”
       She closed her eyes for a second as she stopped at another red light. “I’m sorry I asked.”
       “I have you down for a consult with Lenora at nine. The furniture and accents are ready for the Fowler Estate. Delivery’s at eleven. You’re booked over there from ten-thirty to two o’clock. Don’t forget your tools for the window treatments this time. I can’t be flying all over Beverly Hills saving your fabulous ass.”
       “One little mistake…” She accelerated and turned on the Pacific Coast Highway.
       “Until the next one,” he teased. “Anywho, you have back-to-back new client consults booked until five, then you’re free. I blocked out the rest of the evening for paperwork and whatever else you need to do.”
       “That’s not too bad.” She needed a couple of easy days. Her relentless schedule was starting to take a toll. “I’m having lunch with JT Cartwright on Tuesday. Can you set something up?”
       “Lenora’s defense attorney son?”
       “One and the same. He’s nothing like his mother.”
       “Let me look.” He tsked. “Oh, that’s going to make Tuesday messy, honey, real messy.”
       “That’s why I have you, Super Assistant.”
       “Hold that compliment. Someone’s here.” Patrick gasped. “Oh, look at these—stunning. You got flowers, girl. Big beautiful roses.”
       She clutched the steering wheel. “Roses?”
       “Mmhmm. A dozen blood-reds. They smell fabulous.”
       Her already-queasy stomach shuddered. “Is there—is there a note?”
       “Sure is.”
       “Can you read it?”
       “Thought you’d never ask. Let me open it up.” She heard the sound of paper ripping, then Patrick cleared his throat for affect. “It says ‘Welcome Home.’ Then there’s a twenty-five. Not sure what that means.”
       But she did. Today was the twenty-fifth day since her disastrous date with Rex Richardson. He’d texted her from a different number at some random time every day since the night he left flowers on her doorstep. Six days in Oregon hadn’t stopped his harassment as she’d hoped it would. And now he knew she was home. She snapped on the heat as her blood ran cold. “Throw them away.”
       “I don’t want them,” her voice shook. “Throw them out.” How did Rex know she was back? Better yet, how did he know she’d been gone? “Did anyone out of the ordinary call looking for me while I was away?”
       “No, not that I can think of. All current clients were patched through to your phone. New clientele set up appointments with me.”
       “Did you give anyone my travel itinerary?”
       “I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear your question.”
       She sighed. “Of course you didn’t. I’m sorry.” For the first time since this all began she was truly afraid. The daily texts and even the blue roses were more annoying than anything, but Rex seemed to know her every move. Texts could be sent from anywhere and flowers delivered to a doorstep, but now she realized he was actively watching her. She glanced in her rearview mirror at the row of headlights behind her and wondered if Rex was following her now.
       “Wren, are you all right?”
        No. “Yes. Yes, I’m fine. It’s been a long week, and the plane ride sucked. I just need to get some rest.”
       “I can cancel your nine o’clock. You can sleep in.”
       Lenora would have a heart attack if she had to wait another day for her damn mockup, and she needed to stay busy. Fear would be keeping her up no matter how her body craved rest, so it was better to carry on as planned. “No, I’m already behind. We need to keep my schedule.”
       “Are you sure?”
       “Positively. I’m just about home. I’ll call you tomorrow morning.”
       “Okay. Bye.”
       “Bye.” She pulled in her drive, dropped her phone, and gripped the wheel with trembling hands as heat from the vents rushed over her. She stared at her darkened front steps in the shadows cast about from the neighbors’ tall trees. What if he was here? His texts weren’t threatening, and technically neither were the flowers, but Rex wasn’t healthy. In the two years she’d owned her home, she’d never been terrified to get out of her car and go inside like she was now.
       This is what he wants. He wants you to be afraid while he plays his games. Steeling herself, she grabbed her phone and got out with her key fob clutched in her unsteady hand. The cool rush of wind tossed her hair in her face, and she swiped wavy locks behind her ear as she strained to hear over the rustling leaves. She walked quickly, her eyes darting everywhere.
       She just had to get to the door and step inside. The panic button was in the entryway if she needed it. The police would come help her, along with whoever was fielding calls at Ethan’s company tonight. “I’m almost there. I’m almost there,” she whispered, flinching, blinking, startled as the sensor lights flashed on to brighten the walkway. The security lights. It was just the security lights. She forgot she reactivated the feature the night of the gala. She took another step forward and saw the blood by the pretty pot of red mums. “Oh my god. Oh my god.” A black cat lay on her step, decapitated and bloated in a pool of dark, congealed crimson. “Oh my…”
       Her breath rushed in and out as she stumbled back. The cellphone in her clammy hand rang, and she screamed. Blindly, she pressed “talk.” “Hell—hello?”
       “Do you like it?” someone whispered.
       She whirled, scanning, searching for Rex. He was here, somewhere. He had to be.
       “Why won’t you call me?” The whisper turned into a pathetic whine. “Why won’t you call me, Wren?”
       “Stop,” she shuddered out as she hurried to her car, looking over her shoulder from time to time, sure he was waiting to pounce. “Stop doing this. I’m calling the police.”
       The whining stopped abruptly and turned into mad, riotous laughter. “They won’t believe you! They won’t believe you!”
       “Leave me alone!” She hung up, gasping for air. Tears poured down her cheeks, and her hand shook as she opened her door, took her seat, and locked herself in. She had to get out of here. She had to get away. It took her two tries to shove the key in the ignition as she glanced at the bloodstained step once more and backed out with a squeal of tires. She sped off, heading toward Ethan’s until she remembered he was gone and a quarter of his house had been gutted for the new edition. All of them were gone—Ethan, Hunter, and Austin. She pressed ‘one’ on her speed dial, listening to the repetitive ringing. Ethan’s smooth voice told her to leave a message, but she hung up instead. She turned down another street, taking her farther from her home, and punched in Ethan Cooke Security’s twenty-four hour assistance line.
       “Ethan Cooke Security. This is Mia.”
       “Mia, it’s Wren.”
       “Wren, are you okay?”
       “Yes.” Her voice broke, and she shook her head as she clutched the wheel with one hand. “No. No, I’m not. There’s a dead cat on my porch.”
       That didn’t exactly describe the horror she’d just backed away from. “Someone killed a cat and left it on my front step.”
       “Oh my god. Where are you?”
       “In my car.” She sniffed. “Driving around. I don’t want to go back to my house alone.”
       “Of course not. Let me patch you through to Tucker Campbell. He’s on call.”
       Tucker? “No, wait—” But it was too late. Soothing music played in her ear.
       “Wren?” Tucker’s deep voice hummed with concern.
       Her lip wobbled, and tears began to fall again. “Yeah, I’m here.”
       “What’s going on? Mia said something about a dead cat?”
       “Someone chopped some sweet cat’s head off and put the body on my front step.”
       He muttered a swear. “Are you there now?”
       “No, I’m in my car, driving around. It freaked me out. I don’t want to be at the house by myself.”
       “I don’t want you there either. Come to my place until we get this figured out.”
       If choking fingers of terror didn’t have her by the throat, she would’ve refused, but Tucker was offering his help. She needed help. “I don’t—I don’t know where you live.”
       “Ocean View Apartments, off Highway One.”
       “What if he follows me? He might be following me right now.” She glanced in the rearview mirror and cringed as headlights trailed behind her.
       “Who the hell is Rex?”
       “The crazy bastard who left the dead cat on my porch.”
       “Son of a bitch, Cooke. Don’t stop. Don’t’ pull over. Drive on a flat tire if you have to. Just get here. I’ll be waiting outside.”
       “Okay,” she sniffed, too afraid to be prideful. “I’m about ten minutes away.”

Did you enjoy the excerpt? You can read the first three chapters on Cate’s website,

Thanks Cate for joining us today and sharing this excerpt. This definitely gets your attention.

For those who aren’t familiar with Cate, let me tell you a bit about her background.

Cate currently lives in Tennessee with her husband, their two boys, and St. Bernard, Bear. She is the author of the bestselling romantic suspense series, The Bodyguards of L.A. County. Before her career as an author, Cate worked in special education for 12 years.

“I’m a pretty lucky girl; one day I woke up and my entire life changed. I saw the light, so to speak, and decided I was going to be a writer. Now, two years later, I’m working on my sixth novel and I’m an Amazon bestselling author. I’m very grateful for the support and success I have had,” Cate explained.

For more on Cate, the Bodyguards of L.A. County series, and her writing, visit her website and her Amazon Author Page or connect with her on Facebook, Goodreads and Twitter@CateBeauman.


This giveaway is for an eBook copy of WAITING FOR WREN. The giveaway is open internationally.

To enter, just send me an e-mail ( with the subject line, “Win Waiting for Wren.” Your message should include your name, the email address you’d like the eBook sent to, and what format you’d like the book in (Kindle, Nook, PDF, etc.). The deadline to enter this giveaway for 1 of 3 e-copies of WAITING FOR WREN is 8 p.m. (EST) on Tuesday, Nov. 19.

Thanks so much for stopping by today and visiting with us. Do you mark your calendar anticipating the newest release in your favorite series?



  1. Cate, thanks again for joining us today. The excerpt draws you and makes you want to know more. Wishing you much success.

  2. Mason - Thanks for hosting Cate.

    Cate - Thanks for sharing that excerpt from Waiting For Wren. It's not easy to combine romance, suspense and thriller! I wish you much success with this latest release.

  3. Thank you Mason and thank you Margot for the kind words. I appreciate you letting me stop by. I hope you enjoy the book!

  4. This is the first time that I have heard about this author and series of books. The great thing about blogs is that they introduce readers to authors and books that they had no occasion to know.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.