New cover for Desert Inferno and it came about because of a conversation with Jimmy Thomas who is one of the best cover models, who is a model and director for how he puts together combinations of people and costumes to give writers many options. There was a complication with using this one as Jimmy has black hair and Jake Donovan has dark blond hair. Turns out it wasn't insurmountable, and I like this cover much more than what I had... even though I thought I loved what I had.
When a rugged border patrolman meets a beautiful artist, sparks fly. It's an unlikely combination but then, isn't love often! To complicate it for Jake and Rachel, an enemy is ready to settle an old score.
"Let it go, Rachel. Look, I don't get it.” The expression in his eyes hardened. “What's a woman, who looks like you, doing with a guy with a face like mine, a guy whose own mother couldn't stand him, who has a brother doing time? I’m not your kind of guy, Rachel O’Brian."
She leaned forward, reaching out, lightly tracing his face with her fingertips, her fingers wreaking havoc with his resolve to keep everything casual between them. “How do you know what my kind of guy is?” she asked huskily, trying to keep her tone light and knowing she was failing.
"I am an ugly man, inside and out."
Her fingers tipped his chin up and she looked into his eyes. "Obviously," she whispered, "we don't see your face the same way. Know what I see when I see you?” She didn’t wait for an answer. “I see a strong face but with too much sadness. Your face is like the desert, craggy and rugged. The desert is not ugly but beautiful."
Before he could respond, she pressed her fingers against his lips. "You’ve protected yourself all these years by not caring. You figured that worked.” She felt an almost unendurable surge of sadness to think of what Jake had said and not said about the little boy he’d been, the man he was. She wondered then why she knew so well who he was inside. She knew it better than he knew himself. She had no answer for why that might be true.
"It does work."
"Does it? Or has it only left a lonely boy inside a lonely man?"