Locked-Down Heart

Locked-Down Heart

by Tarina Deaton


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Denise Reynolds's tightly controlled life is thrown off kilter when she's given custody of her young cousins. There are days she has a hard enough time getting herself out of bed, never mind two precocious kids.

If that wasn't enough, Chris Nolton comes strolling back into town as suddenly as he left it. She'd broken her own rules and given him a chance once before, only to have him ghost on her. But he's not there for her this time. No, he's leading the FBI Task Force intent on capturing the kids' biological father. A man who was sent to prison for manslaughter. A man who was released five years too early. A man who wants his kids back.

The past has a way of repeating itself and once again, Denise finds herself defending the innocent against the evil of world. One wrong decision, one second guess, could have devastating consequences. To protect the most important people in her life, she'll need to trust the one man with the power to break her.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780997885651
Publisher: Tarina Deaton LLC
Publication date: 11/20/2017
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)

About the Author

Tarina has spent her entire life in and around the military - first as a dependent and then as an enlisted Air Force member.

In 2015, a friend challenged her to complete NaNoWriMo. She dusted off one of the many stories she'd started over the years, threw it in the trash, and started all over.

Her debut novel, Stitched Up Heart, released in September 2016. The military gives her plenty of material to work with and she strives to create characters who authentically represent all facets of the military life - the good and the not so great.

Tarina is still active duty, a single mom of five-year-old twins, and a closet romantic. Her favorite hobby is sleep. She has delusions of retiring from the military and being a stay-at-home mom.

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Locked-Down Heart 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Anonymous 9 months ago
4.5, very good read. Lot's of good action and romance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You truly won't be disappointed a must read series!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This whole series was so good. I appreciate our service people and all they go through while on active duty and how they have to acclaimate when they return home. While this story is a stand alone, it would be more interesting if you'd read them in order. J
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The writing is great. Subject matter important. I don't often give out 5 stars, but this series is hot, characters well rounded and highly recommened.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
First, thank u for your service td, second you totally write amesome stories of real women and how they act thank you thank you...this book has my five stars I will continue purchasing the next book in your series.
JanaT More than 1 year ago
Locked-Down Heart by Tarina Deaton is the third (sort of) book in her Combat Hearts series and is finally, finally the full story of Denise Reynolds and Chris Nolton. Luckily by the time I discovered Tarina’s books, both the backstory and the full story were published so I had a very easy transition – I could right away continue with Locked-Down Heart! I absolutely love Tarina’s writing … there is something about it that pulls you in, makes the characters so humane and relatable … She takes you to an absolute rollercoaster … I wept and laughed and yelled (yeah, good I was alone) and prayed in my head that things would work out … I have to confess, it was so tense that I had to go and read the last 2 chapters before I could really settle down and enjoy the ride … what a ride …. Denise’s life is crashing down around her … some days are so hard that she has hard time with getting out of bed … Chris is suddenly back and he has not forgotten Denise, it actually has made him re-evaluate his life and the direction he wants to go to … Their story is filled with secrets and danger and darkness and once again, Denise needs to protect the innocent against the evil of world … I don’t want the series to be over! I will keep my fingers crossed for Tarina to add to the series!
E_A_Walsh More than 1 year ago
Locked-Down Heart (Combat Hearts #3) by Tarina Deaton was down right everything I didn't know I needed in a streamy romance novel. Holy, sweet baby kittens, that was one hell of a read. It has all the things I love from other two books; the witty writing, sassy bickering And Denise, she is by far one of the best female MC's I have ever had the pleasure of reading about. She hit every strong point, she was human to a point where I want to meet her and be her friend. She didn't cause useless drama, she has a lot going on, and she slowly opened up, slowly started to trust. That inner conflict was better then any, filler/trope/drama that pledges other romantic tales. Chris was her match, he could keep up with her, look her in the eyes and not shutter in fear and he knew how to brake her walls. Sure they a, interesting start, and they had further things to over come, but they stuck with it, and formed a understanding trust that was stronger then diamond. Bee and Jase are very much present, and you get to see little tidbits of they're ever growing relationship. That and you can't have Denise without Bree, there are one. But man, I love it when they get going. They're of one mind, and know how to play off one another. This book series as a whole is on a different level, for me, it has risen the stared for romantic books. It was not only unique but it touches on real issues that serving members have to face at home, and when the war is over. This is raw, the emotions are heart shattering, and I hope it will open some eyes. I highly recommend you get your hands on this series asap! Like, now, right now.. go buy it! Happy Reading -E.A. Walsh
Debi-Kircher More than 1 year ago
Locked-Down Heart (Combat Hearts Book 3) By Tarina Deaton 5 Stars This is the continuation of Denise and Chris’s story. The last we saw them Denise had thought he just disappeared after giving him a chance in her life. His position with the FBI takes him on missions where he has to cut off all communication and basically turn into a ghost. Denise is done with all that, she has enough to deal with being given custody of her cousins and trying to figure out how she is going to not screw them up, since she has a hard time taking care of herself as it is. When Chris returns with his mission to take down the man that as it turns out is the young cousins father who is supposed to be in prison but got out early and has skipped parole. Denise’s life focus has changed and the children have become everything to her, and she will go to any length to protect them. That includes not allowing Chris to use them as bait to catch their father. Now that he’s back he wants to pick back up with Denise where they left off, but Denise is sick of being an afterthought and isn’t keen on allowing him back in. This was an amazing story, I love this author and her style of pulling a story together. I loved the twists and turns and the danger factor that was present in this story. Sprocket was still one of my favorite parts as well as the friendship bond between Bree and Denise, I love the snarky one liners and the love and support these two share. This author has risen to being one of my new favorite authors and I will read anything she comes out with. Loved Loved Loved It!!!
Maura-Harper More than 1 year ago
Oh my gosh, I really have enjoyed this series. Book 3 in the Combat Hearts Series takes place after Half-Broke Heart and is the continuation of Chris and Denise’s story. As with the other books in the series, the characters are well developed and I connected with them immediately. I really appreciate the fact that the author shows females in active service to the country and females dealing with the after effects of war. Typically it’s all about the male soldier and I like that the gender normative is not played upon in this series. Denise is bad a**… “What can I say? I’m an ammo-sexual who likes to exercise my Second amendment rights.” Locked Down Heart really tugged at my emotions and there were times that I had to take a breath and remember that I was reading fiction. I felt like it was my friends who were involved in the events that take place. In this story, there are 2 adorable children “K-squared” who were just a pleasant and necessary addition to this story. I’ve rated the other books in the series as 4 and 4.5 stars. This story gets 5 stars because it touched me in a way the others didn’t. There is a quote that I highlighted in the book “Sometimes it’s not about being happy. Sometimes it’s about being content”. I think everyone should be happy at some level and I was really glad that all of the characters in this series find their own version of happy.
rockrchic923 More than 1 year ago
Locked Down Heart by Tarina Deaton is the third book in her Combat Hearts series, and the series just keeps getting better and better. I was so happy that I found this series, and have continued to enjoy each new book that has come from it. Locked Down Heart is about Chris and Denise, who were characters in the second book of this series, Half Broke Heart, and Deaton made sure that her readers were not disappointed at their return. I was worried that the relationship between these two would be too much for either Denise or Chris but the two of them, along with Deaton’s great writing style, really showed just how powerful of a connection that they shared and how in the end the past is just that the past. I loved the growth that Deaton showed with Denise’s character, and how Chris both appreciated it but adapted to her changing life as well. There were allot of twists and turns in this book, as well as some great suspense which really made this book an even easier read than I would have anticipated. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a complex real couple with real life issues, but with enough steam to make it worth it. I would recommend that this series be read in order, otherwise the characters stories may not completely make sense to a new reader. I am so happy to have picked this book up and I hope that Deaton continues on with this series in the future because I can’t get enough.
Bobbi Wagner More than 1 year ago
Locked-Down Heart (Combat Hearts Book 3) by Tarina Deaton is the third book in her Combat Hearts series. I highly suggest that you read the previous two books before this one, in order to get the full enjoyment from this series. I enjoy this author's writing style as she takes me on a journey that covers just about everything from laughter to suspense. These characters she has created once again took me on an emotional roller coaster ride that I needed to keep reading. They are both connectable and lovable. They also took me on some twists and turns that left me sitting on the edge of my seat one minute and the next not knowing what to think. This is a continuation of Denise and Chris's story. This story picks up where Denise is caring for her younger cousins because their mother's cancer has become terminal. She is trying to balance everything and be there for everyone. The only problem with this is it is effecting her PTSD which her dog has been sensing. Then Chris shows up one day with information about the children's dad. She knows that he will come after them but she is willing to do anything to protect them. How far will she have to go for that protection? Chris is dealing with his own problems with the dad but at the same time he is starting to realize that Denise may mean more to him then he realized. Will he find a way to protect them? What will they do with their feelings for each other? Is there a happy ending for anyone in this story? Is Chris here for the long run? I enjoyed the characters in this story especially Denise. She tries to be so strong and with everything that she has gone through she really is stronger then she realizes. I feel compassion for her as Chris seems to come and go out of her life and I don't think that helps her much. When they are together, they have such chemistry and attraction and heat up the pages. Will she trust him again? Is there second chances in their fate? The secondary characters in this story are connectable and lovable for the most part. They will even bring a laugh here and there. I highly recommend this story, I know you will want to see what happens next to Denise and if Chris is willing to stick around and become a family!
blonde_betty More than 1 year ago
Locked Down Heart, the latest in Tarina Deaton’s Combat Hearts series, alternately had me laughing and crying. Sometimes both at the same time. Denise’s journey was heart-wrenching and the addition of the kids made it all the harder, and sweeter at the same time. Her and Chris’s HEA was hard fought, but well worth the journey. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great addition to this series!!
Lauren817 More than 1 year ago
From the summary alone Tarina Deaton's Locked-Down Heart seemed like the kind of book I would love. I mean, a second chance romance AND a FBI Investigation? I couldn't wait! Luckily, my predication was straight on - I LOVED Locked-Down Heart. Thrilling, romantic, and heartwarming, Locked-Down Heart is a book that had me hooked from page 1. One of my favorite parts of Locked-Down Love was the characters. There were so many good ones; however, my top two favorites would have to be Denise and Chris. Denise is strong willed and fearless, and when it comes to K-squarded - the nickname for her niece and nephew - she's the ultimate mother bear. She'll do anything to keep them safe, even if it means reconnecting with a man from her past - a man whose memory still haunts her to this very day. Denise takes on so many roles within this book - mother, friend, business owner, protecter - and I loved seeing her kick butt in all of them. What I enjoyed even more, though, was how she wasn't always fearless. She had a lot of doubts, especially when it came to raising two children on her own and letting her heart be open to love again. Her doubts were realistic and even a bit heartbreaking and they made me love her all the more. Chris, on the other hand, is the stereotypical alpha male. Like Denise, he's willing to protect the ones he loves. His past actions regarding Denise made me angry, but at the same time, I could understand that some of it was out of his control; however, I loved how far he went to make it right this time around. His interactions with Denise were always fun to witness, especially when her claws came out in full force. Plus, it warmed my heart to see him interact with Denise's niece and nephew. It was adorable, which made Chris all the more swoon-worthy, in my opinion. In addition to Chris and Denise, there's a bunch of great additional characters. I especially loved Denise's best friend Bree who always managed to give Densie the wake up calls she desperately needed. The plot in Locked-Down Heart was so much more than just a romance. It included mystery as well as tension. There were so many times I was on the edge of my seat, dying to know what would happen next in regard's to K-squared's father. He was such an evil, cunning man, and I couldn't even begin to stomach some of the horrible stuff he did. Additionally, I loved seeing a family develop between K-squared, Denise, and Chris. It brought the laughs as well as the sugar to the book. Some of the stuff those kids said/did had me laughing out loud even! Last but not least, the romance was HOT. The chemistry between Denise and Chris was incredibly evident, and better yet, I liked that it took a while for them to feel comfortable with each other. It wasn't an instant, "Okay, I forgive you, let's be together forever and ever" and I appreciated that. In all, Locked-Down Heart has ample heart, romance, and suspense. It's a book I highly suggest! Grade: A
anapjm02 More than 1 year ago
Denise Reynolds’s tightly controlled life is thrown off kilter when she’s given custody of her young cousins. If that wasn’t enough, Chris Nolton, an old flame, comes strolling back into town as suddenly as he left it. He is leading the FBI Task Force intent on capturing the kids’ biological father, a gang member and is a dangerous man. Chris and Denise have to rekindle their relationship and put their differences aside to help these kids who need them so much. They are lost souls because of the nature of their jobs and are trying to built a better life for themselves, specially Denise because of the children. Denise helps as a therapist dog for PSTD soldiers and this is generous and brave way of dealing with her own shadows. This is a great book with lots of actions, but still a sweet reunion of two people that are marked in life because of their job. Very well written and with adorable kids and dogs that will conquer you in the first chapter.