"Ms. Sivad provided a great landscape, awesome characters, a plot with lots of substance, and outstanding sex...The sparks that fly between Naomi and Charlie Wolf start from their first meeting and never stop..." Review Site: JERR; Reviewer: L.T. Blue; Rating:5 STARS
"The detail and richness of the setting were superb. Charlie Wolf and Miss Naomi Parker...become whole in each other's company...and the primal need awakened by their actions was sweltering..."Review Site:Love Western Romances; Reviewer:Rose; Rating: 5 SPURS
"Wolf's Tender is an erotically charged tale...The sparks these two incredibly different...independent characters generate, heat the story from the moment they meet..." Review Site: Love Romances & More; Reviewer:T. Barringer; Rating: 4 hearts
From the Author
"There's a catch basin of water down below. Bathe." He handed her linen and a bar of soap.
Grateful for the chance to soak, she left comment about his dictatorial behavior for another time and hurried to the water.
"Watch out for snakes," he advised.
Naomi didn't like snakes or other slithering critters but she did like being clean, so she watched her step, shed Charlie's clothes and plunged in the water, wallowing like a kid in the semi-warm pool. Her hair hung in rough strands that would become snarled balls when dry. She worked ineffectually at one tangle until she felt his gaze on her.
"I wish my hair was straight like yours," she muttered.
He held out his hand, indicating it was time for her to quit the water.
"Just gawk at something else besides me," she told him, exasperated at his boldness when he didn't look away. She covered her breasts with one arm, her triangle of lower curls with the other and grimaced at him as she emerged.
He snorted at her attempt at modesty and wrapped the blanket around her, rubbing the drying cloth across her hair. Then he handed her a tin.
"Work that into the snarls, then rinse it out of your hair."
"What's in it?" she asked suspiciously, sniffing the mixture. It smelled like him, or at least the spicy wood scent she associated with him.
"Bear grease." He grunted impatiently. "Now rub it on your hair."
It was odd how right away her hair felt different. It hung in soft wet strands that felt like silk when she rinsed his concoction from her head.
"It feels like when I was a child and rinsed my hair in rain water." She let her hands play down the silken length and looked at him doubtfully. "Bear grease?"
"No. My mother makes it for me to use on my hair," he growled.
She'd noticed how shiny his hair was. "It's indecent for a man to have hair that hangs down his back and is prettier than a woman's." The tart words escaped her before she could stop them. Then she fastened on the important part of his sentence, excusing her own rude comment.
"You have a mother?" She was surprised. He didn't look like a man with a mother, let alone one who made him beauty products for his hair.
"Did you think I was born in a cave with wolves?" He capped the tin and stuck it in his pocket.
"Does your mother live with the Kiowa tribe?" she asked politely, ignoring his sarcasm because frankly, she could picture him in a cave with wolves.
"My mother is Rachel McCallister of the MC3 Ranch. She's a white woman, like you."
While she digested that information, he did one of his silent maneuvers, moving much closer, leaving Naomi very conscious of his nearness.
"Sun ointment--should make your face quit burning." She could feel the heat from his body as he rubbed a different salve on her cheeks.
His nearness and gentle application of the medicine flustered her. No one had taken care of her since her sister had left. Naomi had grown up taking care of others. Now this man leaned over her and squinted as he dabbed another kind of cream on her cheeks.
"It does soothe the burn." She couldn't resist touching his hand as he carefully applied the balm to her burned cheeks. "Why are you being nice to me?"
She suspected that Charlie Wolf never made a move that didn't benefit him, but at this moment she didn't care. It was wonderful that he was showing her kindness during the day.
"Your skin's too chapped. I want it soft under my lips when I taste you," he drawled.
"It's daylight. We need to travel now that I've rested." Naomi blinked at him, confused.
"We're hidden here and it's a good place to hole up until dusk. My horse will let me know if anyone or anything gets close."
"It was dark last night. How did you find me?" Naomi asked.
"Old Mossy took a fancy to the buckskin mare you pilfered." Charlie's eyes crinkled at the corners just the slightest when he answered. "She's in heat. He followed her scent." The almost smile changed to a frown and he asked, "Where the hell did you think you were going?"
"The buckskin mare belonged to one of the criminals you captured and I felt certain she was returning to familiar horses," Naomi answered smugly.
"And even if that blockheaded idea was sound, you thought you'd just ride into an outlaw camp and do what?"
Naomi blushed and squirmed under his gaze. Her plan had been more an impulse.
"Woman, you have no sense." He shook his head. Shrugging, he leaned close to her, his nostrils flaring as if testing the air.
"What are you doing?" she asked nervously.
"Fixin' your scent in my mind for if I have to go chasing after you again," Charlie growled.
His words brought a flush of arousal flooding her body. She could smell him too and she liked his spicy male scent. She was reminded that only a blanket separated her nakedness from Charlie and her skin pebbled with awareness as her womb clenched. Thankfully he didn't notice her unseemly response and continued explaining his plan.
"The stars'll be out tonight and it'll be clear enough to see." He turned her toward the camp and her bed under the tree. "Meanwhile, you can tender the next installment of your payment to me."
"What?" Her voice sharpened, her disappointment a twist of pain. He didn't need to remind her that she'd traded him liberties for his care. The hair and face creams seemed less special and her momentary pleasure at being tended disappeared.
"How many such installments will it take to close this account?" she snapped.
"Depends on the amount of danger I incur in the course of the rescue," he murmured, leaning over her to claim her lips. And then his shoulders blotted out the sun and he laid her to the ground, coming down on top of her.