by Jill Sorenson
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Badlands by Jill Sorenson

Love is the most dangerous territory of all

Every day, bodyguard Owen Jackson puts his life on the line—and keeps his feelings for Penny Sandoval locked away. Assigned to protect Penny's father, a presidential candidate, Owen can't get emotionally involved. That is, until Penny and her young son, Cruz, are abducted and taken deep into the California badlands.

Owen knows the bleak territory from his childhood. Worse, he knows the gang leader making ransom demands—his own brother, Shane. When a terrified Penny escapes into the desert with Cruz, Owen has to save her: from the elements and from the gang in close pursuit. Owen has hidden the darkness in his past from Penny. Now his only chance of keeping her alive is to let her see the man he really is—even if it means losing the only woman he'll ever want.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780373778348
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication date: 12/31/2013
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Jill Sorenson writes sexy action/adventure romance for HQN. Her latest release, Aftershock, was given a starred review by Publishers Weekly.

Jill lives in the San Diego area with her husband and two daughters. She draws inspiration from the diverse neighborhoods and spectacular scenery of Southern California. You can find her on Twitter much too often. Her other hobbies include reading, hiking, and going to the beach.

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Badlands 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
rhonda1111RL More than 1 year ago
4 Stars Badlands can stand alone but is better if you read the books in order. So you can see the changes in them. I have read all three books so far in the Aftershock series and have seen Owen and Penny grow and make changes in their lives. When we first met Owen he was a bad guy but it didn't take long for his true self to shine. Owen chose to help instead of destroy and think only of himself. Owen came from a poor rough background and made some mistakes. Since the earthquake he keeps making the right choices even if they are hard. He has proven to be a worthy hero time after time. Penny was a unwed teenage mother. She will do anything to protect her son. She is trying to make up for hurting her family. She keeps putting others first in her life. Cruz is a cute loveable child. He wants to protect his mom. He also wants a dad and would be happy if it was Owen. Their are other strong characters in the book that you wonder about them what side are they really on. Besides strong characters that I like there is plenty of drama, danger and action. You don't want to put it down. Their are some sex scenes that I skipped over. Their is some hard things that happened to Owen in his past. I can't wait till the next book in the series comes out Backwoods in 2014. The setting for this book is the Badlands. Which I did not know much about before I read it. Dry hot desert area. Pacing was good. I did not find any slow boring parts. Every time they handled one problem soon another came up. I was given this ebook for the purpose of giving a honest review by Netgalley and Harlequin. publication: December 31st 2013 by Harlequin HQN 384 pages ISBN 9780373778348
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read one of her books and then ordered several more, have not been disappointed yet. Lots of action and the dialog between the main characters is interesting and believable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a very good followup story for Owen and Penny.   It was very suspenseful and the interaction between the two of them was realistic and at times very emotional.    I really enjoyed this followup to Aftershock and Freefall.
RipeForReader More than 1 year ago
My rating: 4.5 of 5 ¿¿ Owen Jackson and a Penny Sandoval have a history. Five years ago he was a convicted felon and she was rejected by her parents due to her unplanned pregnancy when they where trapped together under an overpass after a massive earthquake. Owen had stood up for and by Penny through their ordeal and despite their vast differences in background, they came through close friends. Penny's father, already active in the political arena pulled some strings and managed to eventually have Owen assigned to their security detail.  Despite having been within sight of each other for most of the past five years, Owen has always kept his feelings for Penny under lock and key. It hasn't always been easy, but at least he was able to show true affection for her son Cruz, who he had helped bring into this world. At times Penny would give off signals that indicated she might have more than just a friendly interest in him, but they both had too much to lose to act on a mere possibility. When an alarm at a political rally for her father causes chaos, it allows Owen and the driver to be overpowered and Penny and her son to be abducted. Owen is tied up and taken along as well as the group makes their way into the California badlands, country very familiar to Owen as well as the apparent leader of this operation. His family came from there. Owen was shocked to find his own brother behind the abduction plan, he was only released from prison a month ago. The gang is careful with Penny, since she is their bargaining tool for a substantial amount of ransom, but they have no such reservations for Owen and are brutal in their treatment of him. Terrified they have killed him, Penny finds an opportunity to escape with her son and flees the camp. When discovered, an attempt is made to use Owen to lure her back, but Owen is determined to foil the gang's plans and find Penny himself to help her and Cruz to safety.  Under the direst of circumstances, and in the face of danger, the close mouthed Owen starts revealing some of his complicated family dynamics, along with the true depth of his feelings for Penny and his reasons for the years of emotional distance. Penny is thrilled to have finally broken through some of his carefully erected barriers, to see her feelings reflected back. If only they could find a way to stay alive long enough to enjoy the discovery..... **** Dangerous, disturbing, hot and heroic!! I have loved every book in this "Aftershock Series" by Jill Sorenson. The books are such a great blend of suspense, action, romance and some heat. Fantastic imperfect heroes with human flaws that make them all the more attractive and strong, capable heroines, not easily taken for a ride and often doing as much of the rescuing as being rescued. It is merely a matter of how one looks at it. Owen grew up on the wrong side of the tracks so to speak, not an ideal childhood, and he got in trouble through his involvement with his brother, who had less of a moral compass than Owen did. Being a young kid still, Owen's time in prison was not good for him, it scarred him emotionally and he did what he had to to survive, but somehow he never lost his moral compass. Penny had more of a privileged upbringing, but far more public, which is why her young unplanned pregnancy caused such an uproar and estranged her from her parents temporarily. Living through a disaster and giving birth mellowed out the situation and guilt kept Penny bound to her influencial father and unable to make many choices for herself. Jill Sorenson's great descriptive powers bring everything alive. From the desolate scenery, to the tension building in a scene, or feelings of utter fear and desperation, Her words have the ability to place you right inside the story, so much so, that the world around you seems to stop.  ¿Fabulous writing, amazing characters and a thrilling story!!¿ **ARC provided by NetGalley and Harlequin HQN in return for an honest review.**