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Where Love and Murder Lie Just Below the Surface . . . Within the Skin by @ZaraWestAuthor #romantics

Title Within the Skin

Author Zara West

Genre Romantic Suspense

Publisher The Wild Rose Press

Book Blurb

Alba Vargas, known on the street as El Toro, is on the cusp of fame and fortune. Winner of a prestigious award for young artists, she is the toast of the New York City art scene. Or at least she will be, once she figures out how to act like a woman after living disguised as a boy for six years. If she is lucky, she might even attract the attention of the tattoo artist she has long loved from afar.

Tattoo artist Fernando Pharaoh has betrayed everyone who has ever cared about him, including El Toro, the street-wise graffiti artist who saved his life when all looked bleak. Depressed, he turns away from his friends and finds himself ensnared in a criminal enterprise run by a former enemy.

Then Toro’s younger brother, Hanger, is kidnapped by the crime boss. Blaming himself, Pharaoh sets out to rescue him, resolved to do one good thing in his life. But Toro has her own desperate plan to save her brother—one that will not only break Pharaoh’s heart, but will also destroy every hope and dream she has ever had.


She extracted the gold-bordered engraved card with her name on it. She ran her finger across the raised letters—Alba Vargas—an apparition from another time, another world.

Alba Vargas had been a timid, frightened child who’d spent her nights huddled at the bottom of a closet with her hand over her baby brother’s mouth, hoping that whoever was beating her mom didn’t start on her next.

She was no longer that girl. Tonight she would be the new Alba Vargas, reborn and re-baptized as a woman with power. Tonight she would be one of the movers and shakers in the art world. Tonight she was a winner.

The glass door loomed in front of her. She drew to a halt and peered into the museum lobby. It was like watching a ball scene in one of those boring chick flicks. Overly-skinny women in glittering gowns gathered in small groups, their manicured hands moving like flighty little birds.

Men stuffed into black tuxes hovered over them, claiming ownership with carelessly placed hands on an upper arm or on the curve of a waist. Others stood in animated pairs conversing about whatever denizens of the art world talked about.

A slight breeze ruffled the edges of her cape and a chill swept across her exposed skin. She didn’t belong here all alone, wearing these too-revealing clothes and flaunting false femininity.

Toro gripped her purse tighter. Didn’t matter. She had to do this. For herself. For Hanger.

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Wild Rose


I’m one of the authors participating in the Swirling Winds of September Giveaway and you can win an e-copy of Within the Skin.

Runs September 1 -30 and is open internationally.

Winner will be drawn October 1, 2018.

Who’s ready for a party??

Celebrate the release of the newest book in my Skin Quartet series! Games and prizes for my Facebook friends. The party lasts all day. So check in when you can and join the fun. I'll be giving away signed books, bags, jewelry, and more...

Monday, September 17 at 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM EST

Author Biography

Award-winning author Zara West loves all things mysterious, adventurous, and heart-stopping as long as they lead to true love. Swept off her feet by her own Indiana Jones, Zara has followed sheep and goats up and down mountainsides in Greece, Crete, and Italy, been stranded on the banks of the Rhine with no money and one chocolate bar, and while she has never been kidnapped, she has been abandoned on an island in the middle of the wilderness for longer than she wants to remember. Now she writes books for the romantic adventurer in us all.

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