Juno Rushdan is a former Air-Force Intelligence Officer turned romantic suspense author of Every last Breath. Her debut book (out April 30) was called "a heart-pounding, James Bond-ian adventure" by Kirkus Reviews and has been blurbed by FOUR New York Times bestselling authors—Steve Berry, Laura Griffin, Lexi Blake, and Steve Berry. We are really excited to share this book with you in just a few short weeks, but first, we wanted to introduce you to the badass behind the book—Juno!
Pitch Every Last Breath in 2 sentences or less.
Two covert operatives form a strained alliance to stop an imminent attack, but the former lovers find themselves on a deadly collision course with a world-class assassin in this sexy Jason Bourne-esque novel.
What one thing do you have to have by you as you write?
A large cup of hot black coffee.
What’s your favorite romance novel of all time?
There are way too many to choose one, but the first romance novel I read I snuck out of my grandmother’s bedroom. It was Thurston House by Danielle Steel. To this day when I think about it I can feel all of the emotions it raised in my heart and in the pit of my stomach. Coincidentally, the second book I borrowed was The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum. I guess I have my grandma to thank for my interest in writing romantic thrillers.
What would you do in your final hour?
Hold my children and tell my husband how much he means to me.
What kind of research did you do to write Every Last Breath?
The concept for the story is a by-product of my background as a military Intelligence Officer. I’d love to tell you more about my history, but it’s classified. What I didn’t know I researched online. I’m pretty certain the National Security Agency has me on some watch list for the keywords I used and they’re monitoring me. We disabled the microphone on our Smart TV to prevent “hackers” from eavesdropping. The voice recognition function has to be enabled, but the mic is always listening unless you deactivate it. If you do enable voice command, please be aware that every word is being captured and sent over the Internet.
STOP—Everything below is classified
BIO: Juno Rushdan enlisted in the U.S. Army at seventeen, passing up a scholarship to Syracuse University. She went through Airborne school, became a 98G SIGINT Voice Interceptor, and did multiple deployments to Panama and Honduras for counter-narcotics missions. After finishing her bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, at The Ohio State University, she became an Air Force Intelligence Officer. Her first duty station was Ramstein Air Base, Germany, where she led Eagle Vision-1, a satellite imagery ground station unit and deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. Her team received a letter from the Secretary of the Air Force for their efforts in the hunt for weapons of mass destruction and aiding the Special Operations Forces incursion into Iraq. Juno was later assigned to three more Combatant Commands: CENTCOM, AFRICOM, and NORTHCOM’s Joint Task Force (JTF). She was appointed the Intelligence Action Officer (IAO) for the JTF, where the mission was to provide command and control of Department of Defense forces managing the consequences of a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or high-yield explosive (CBRN) incident in the United States. As the IAO, she evaluated likely threats and war-gamed response plans based on the most probable and hazardous scenarios.
DEBRIEFING: A Personal Look at Juno Rushdan
For me, it was an honor to put on both uniforms. Supporting special forces and poring over CBRN threat assessments day after day definitely shaped the foundation for the Final Hour series and Every Last Breath. When I was at intelligence school as an officer in Texas, I watched the Twin Towers fall on TV. That horrific act of terrorism changed me as a New Yorker, as an American, and only reinforced my sense of purpose. I tried to convey what it means to be called to serve and the sacrifices one makes through my characters. Readers will find themes that are dear to my heart: service before self, fighting for the greater good and the preservation of our way of life. Another similarity is in the military you become a part of a powerful community, but you’re also taken into a smaller tribe that’ll have your back and protect you without question. My characters also forge a family and find a sense of belonging with each other.
2 covert operatives
1 chance to get it right
Maddox Kinkade is an expert at managing the impossible. Tasked with neutralizing a lethal bioweapon, she turns to the one person capable of helping her stop the threat of pandemic in time: the love of her life, back from the dead and mad as hell at her supposed betrayal. Recruiting Cole to save millions of lives may be harder than resisting the weight of their shared past, but Maddox will do whatever it takes…even if it destroys her.
When Maddox crashes back into Cole Matthews’ life, he wants to fight back. He wants to hate her. But the crisis is too strong to ignore, and soon the two former lovers find themselves working side-by-side in a breakneck race to stop a world-class killer with a secret that could end everything.
The clock is ticking.
Who's ready to swoon over some amazing romance covers? We're so excited to share some of the amazing covers for our August & September 2019 books! Keep scrolling for the gorgeous covers of:
In case we haven’t proved it yet, we are ridiculously excited about Maxym M. Martineau’s Kingdom of Exiles. There are two main factions in the book: beast charmers and Cruor assassins. As their name probably indicates, Charmers are the race of beings with the ability to tame magical beasts and call on them whenever they please. Members of Cruor, on the other hand, are undead humans, raised again to live forever in the shadows and work as assassins. While everyone has their own unique, individual traits, there are a few things that make them assassins or Charmers.
So, which faction do you belong to? While we impatiently wait for Kingdom of Exiles, let’s find out!
ABOUT KINGDOM OF EXILES
Assassin’s Creed meets Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in this gripping, epic fantasy romance trilogy.
My heart wasn’t part of the deal when I bargained for my life,
But assassins so rarely keep their word.
Exiled Charmer Leena Edenfrell is running out of time. Empty pockets forced her to sell her beloved magical beasts—an offense punishable by death—and now there’s a price on her head. With the realm’s most talented murderer-for-hire nipping at her heels, Leena makes Noc an offer he can’t refuse: powerful mythical creatures in exchange for her life.
Plagued by a curse that kills everyone he loves, Noc agrees to Leena’s terms in hopes of finding a cure. Never mind that the dark magic binding the assassin’s oath will eventually force him to choose between Leena’s continued survival…and his own.
We are OBSESSED with the new cover of Joanne Kennedy’s One Fine Cowboy (out in August). Okay, we’re really obsessed with the beautiful horse and gorgeous man featured on the cover. We asked Jeff, Buster the horse’s owner if he’d tell us more about him! Jeff is the owner of Casita de Chuparosa in New Mexico.
Y’all, it happened again. Stefani swung by my desk to ask if I could share some more secrets about an upcoming book. But not just any book! She wanted the dirt on Whiteout by Adriana Anders—the novel that’s going to redefine a subgenre!
Don’t believe me? Well, prepare your mind, friends, because it’s about to be blown.
Cowboy romance author Kim Redford joins us to tell us about her favorite happily ever after--Dreaming of a White Wolf Christmas by Terry Spear!
So far, 2019 is shaping up to be a great year for new Romance titles. One of my resolutions for the year is to make more time for reading. A good thing since there are so many books coming out that I’m just dying to get my hands on.
Here is a list of ten books (plus a bonus novella) that are destined for my reading stack.
In case you missed it, Bookish revealed the cover for the first book in the Beast Charmer trilogy, Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym M. Martineau, last week, and we. are. obsessed. We charmed Maxym's editor Mary into dishing all the secrets about the book!
Author Stefanie London joins us to tell us how to be your most comfortable when reading!
We are so excited to reveal the gorgeous cover of Kari Lynn Dell’s upcoming standalone contemporary western, Last Chance Rodeo (out July 30)! We asked Kari to talk about the inspiration behind the book.
The year was 1987, the cowboy a hot young gun named Tod Slone, on track to qualify for his first National Finals Rodeo. On the night of the first of September, he finished competing in Fort Madison, Iowa and tied his outstanding rope horse to the fence along with all the others during the closing ceremonies. When he came back, Freeway was gone.
Imagine losing an animal that was as dear to you as any family pet. Imagine that animal was also the source of your livelihood. And it was just gone. No trace of Freeway or the thief was ever found--until eight years later when rookie tie down roper Wes Durfey arrived in Denver for one of the first rodeos of his professional career.
Riding Tod Slone’s missing horse.