my novels

Novels by D. L. Keur
writing as C. J. “Country” James

To Have & To Hold,
a Continuing Montana Love Story (CJ Bk 2)

I wanted you laughing, I wanted you weeping, I wanted to fill you with sorrow and joy. So that’s what I wrote.

I wanted you laughing, I wanted you weeping, I wanted to fill you with sorrow and joy. So that’s what I wrote.

The story? Love, friendship, and bitterness—Franklin’s and Jake’s, Catherine’s and Dree’s.

Thank God for Lane.

This is a semi-sweet love story. There’s cursing, but nary a sex scene. It’ll still have you feeling butterflies, though…and provoke wicked grins from the men.

MORE ABOUT To Have & To Hold

Only six weeks married, and the pressures of life on a big, working ranch take their toll on Jake and Dree. The newlywed glow has vanished, and so has Jake’s granddad, ranch owner Franklin Jarvis. He’s gone. That leaves Jake, struggling to manage it all. He’s stressed and exhausted. And Dree hasn’t the power or the knowledge to help him. Worse, when push comes to shove, Jake seems to take everyone else’s side, except hers.

When Franklin does finally surface, it’s all over local news. There’s a name and a picture attached, and a little snooping uncovers that Franklin’s been seeing a young, big city whore from back East – taking a sex vacation at the expense of the ranch and Dree and Jake’s happiness. At least, that’s how Dree sees it. …Franklin? When she confronts him in private, he tells her it’s none of her business. But she makes it her business, and all hell breaks loose. …Because Franklin loves Catherine, and that’s the rest of the story.

Reader Reactions to To Have & To Hold

“These books are about real ranching people. There are animals. There are sometimes gory details. These books are REAL.” –Marva Dasef

“An intriguing and heart-felt story about family, values and love. 5 Stars” –Clayton Bye, reviewer

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Novels by D. L. Keur
writing as E. J. Ruek

Old Hickory Lane

Raised white, half Native, a young veterinarian struggles to survive rural North Idaho amid poverty and prejudice.

Meet Warren Jeffreys, D.V.M. Raised white, half Cree, he’s gifted with animals, but not very people savvy.

Struggling to survive his first year in private practice, despite the huge chip on his shoulder, college debt, and a plague of bigotry and prejudice, his bad luck and worse judgment lands him broke and homeless, camping out with vagrants and vagabonds. He’s cleansing cows and cutting up dead lambs inside bawling ewes—an animal mechanic working for a small-time veterinary service in rural North Idaho.

As his hopes for prestige and preeminence buckle under the rigors of day-to-day practice, he finds a new dream—a reconciliation to home and family—and with it comes a certain peace…until, once again, as fame and fortune tempt, he faces hard choices.

The book has been “vetted” by modern, practicing veterinarians. It’s the animals that make you really pull for Dr. Warren Jeffreys, because, despite his best attempts not to, he cares. A lot. And, because he cares, because he competes against death, regardless the odds, he makes a difference. Unfortunately, the often cantankerous farm folk he serves don’t always appreciate his efforts and skill. Nor do they trust him, the “too tall, long-haired Injun.” Warren truly is a man without a home, with a foot in two worlds, but welcome in neither until he learns to trust his own heart.

Reader Reactions to Old Hickory Lane

For me it’s not the explosions and splashes that makes a great story. It’s the little things. That Ruek has managed to snare me in the story web and make me care about the characters–from Dr. Warren Jeffreys down to Ed the bantam rooster. She’s taken the ordinary and made it extra-ordinary in ways that you might not expect but are so comfortable and obvious when revealed you’ll wonder where reality stops and the fantasy begins. That’s good story telling–all the little things that add up to a powerful tale. –Nathan Lowell

This book sucked me in and didn’t let me go even after the ending. The author tells beautifully a story of life and death, struggles and passions, science and old magic, that touched me profoundly. –Lucie le Blanc

Through Better & Worse,

a Montana Love Story (CJ Bk 1)

Reader Reactions to Through Better & Worse

…Impossible to put down. –Elaine Tormey

The one thing I love about this author is that I never feel like I’m reading, I so get lost in the story. Masterfully done. –Elizabeth Bonecher-Brenaman

This is not your bare-chested, sexy cowboy romance (though Jake ain’t bad). Those western-romance-lite books are mere cotton candy representations of real ranch life and real ranch people. Author, C.J. “Country” James, knows the people she writes about far better than most. –Cellophane Queen

Getting a boot in the door almost costs Jake Jarvis his life. It does cost him two good hats, some jail time, and a whole bunch of money.

But Dree won’t see him for dust.

Guns, roses, and the flow of raw whiskey takes them both Through Better & Worse.

More About This Montana Love Story

Dree Blake thinks Jake Jarvis is a jackass after he nearly runs her off the road. Jake doesn’t think much of the dumpy girl or her mule and beat-up, old trailer. When the two finally meet and Dree doesn’t tell Jake’s hard-nosed cattleman grandfather about the near miss, Jake’s surprised and grateful. When she saves his life, he knows, for sure, she’s made of different stuff than the gals he’s been dating.

Jake wants to get to know who this Dree is, up close and personal, but Dree won’t see him for dust. Attempted date rape and her own parents’ vitriolic marriage have put her off men completely.

The battle of wills gets violent, and the families step in when blood spills, but even that won’t stop their headlong rush for a showdown.

To Inherit a Murderer, Book 1: The Ward

She suspects he’s a murderer…and he is.

At seven, William killed his mother’s dog. At ten, he stabbed his father with a letter opener. There’s the murder of the family maid.Willed custody of her best friend’s son, Deborah brings home a boy driven by hatred and rage. Injured by him the very first day, he threatens her carefully secured life with increasingly violent acts.

But William begins to believe in Deborah as he has never believed in anyone. When Deborah starts to trust in William, though, death answers.

A chilling account of a woman who, against her better judgment, reaches out to a boy everyone has pegged as evil. –Liz Brenaman

Reviews & Reader Reactions

Reuk is up there with the best. Crisp, balanced prose. A unique, well-told story. And a protagonist and antagonist the reader won’t be able to get enough of. I’m thrilled The Ward is just the first book in a series. …The Ward is the reason I keep sifting through the galaxy of small and independent publishers; the novel is unique, and it’s very good. –Clayton Bye, Reviewer

This is a powerful story with lots of questions and some answers. It stirred my mind, emotions, and spirit while being entertaining reading. The characters are very much alive and the interactions are engaging–that would include the non-human characters. As the author promised, gruesome is not in this book. I think Ruek is very good at writing “spine-tingling” without leaving lasting damage. –Anita Lewis

This was a tough book to read. It’s good! But it pulls no punches. …From the beginning it’s clear that all is not as it seems. …The characters are compelling, though, and the setting beguiling. A powerful book. –Masha du Toit

Science Novels by D. L. Keur writing as Aeros

Prologue and Part I of the epic space fiction saga, A Gathering of Rebels.

They were a gathering of rebels
Thrown together, not by happenstance,
But by design and intrigue—
The Ben Drom’s design
And the Cadre’s intrigue—
Except for one wild radical,
One unpredictable element,
Who threatened to undermine
The efforts of all sides involved,
and all because of one small minor—
A Syrene who belonged to
None other than the Ben Drom.

They were a gathering of rebels,
Fighting one another and themselves
In a clash of titans.

Parts II, III, and Epilogue of the epic space fiction saga, A Gathering of Rebels.


“The best…I’ve read in years.”

In the tradition of Frank Herbert, Aeros built has built a science fiction epic that ebbs and flows like the metaplassen that propels the ships of the multiverse. On a grand stage, of which the human-like Terrans occupy only a small portion, a story of oath and intrigue is told against the backdrop of interstellar and multi-dimensional space. From the beginning, it is clear that Aeros built the worlds we travel from the atom up, with unrivaled detail paid to every aspect of the story. Whether it be naming conventions, or the passage of time, or even the nature of the seemingly alive ships themselves, the reader is immersed in a rich, colorful, and remarkably comprehensive tapestry.

If you like quick reads, no.

If you like reads you dream about, yes.

…It’s one of the best…I’ve read in years. –Shawn Jones, Hard SF Author of The Warrior Chronicles


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