Monday, August 15, 2016

Single by Saturday (The Weekday Brides #4)




She enjoyed her fake marriage…until she fell in love with her brother-in-law.

Catherine Bybee serves up excitement and dizzying romance in Single by Saturday, the sequel to Fiancé by Friday and the latest entry in her bestselling Weekday Brides series.

Karen Jones: The petite blonde married a Hollywood star, yet she’s the one who spends every day playing a part: the part of a happy wife. A year ago, she agreed to wed a famous actor to diffuse rumors about his personal life. Now, her divorce sits just around the corner, along with a five million dollar payout. However, as she prepares to exit her fake marriage gracefully, her drop-dead-gorgeous brother-in-law walks through the door…and into her heart.

Zach Gardner: Dark-haired, blue-eyed hunk Zach crashes Michael and Karen’s fancy one-year anniversary party, determined to meet the wife his brother hid from their family. But sparks fly the moment he and Karen see each other. When the famous couple decides to visit the whole Gardner clan, Karen must keep Michael’s secret under wraps in front of his questioning relatives…including Zach, the man who could be the real love of her life.
 




Married by Monday (The Weekday Brides #2)




Carter Billings:
Sandy blond hair and Hollywood good looks, Carter Billings could have any woman he wants. However, when he makes his bid for the Governor's seat in the state of California, he needs to settle down and become a family man. Eliza, the woman he secretly adores, embodies the perfect amount of spice and passion to suit his marital needs, but she's not interested in becoming Mrs. Billings. She can't even stand to be in the same room with him.

Eliza Havens:
It's much easier to drive Carter away than to give into desire. Matching couples is how she earns a living, but getting married isn't an option. The secrets she carries are too dangerous to entangle anyone else. When her hidden identity and past threaten her future, she's left with little choice. Carter is quick to offer solutions to both their problems, but saying yes could mean endangering the man she's growing to love



Fiancé by Friday (The Weekday Brides #3)



Gwen Harrison:
The beautiful, high-born daughter of an English duke came to America to take over her sister-in-law’s matchmaking business. But just because she’s the boss doesn’t mean she can’t fantasize about making her own perfect match with bodyguard Neil MacBain. Will the enigmatic man who haunts her dreams cost her more than she bargained for?

Neil MacBain:
The retired Marine can’t deny the effect blue-blooded Gwen has on his troubled soul or his battle-hardened body. But as a client, Gwen is off-limits—until a threat from Neil’s past returns…and Gwen is caught in the crossfire. Now to keep her safe he will risk it all: his career, his life…and his heart.

Wife by Wednesday (The Weekday Brides #1)



Blake Harrison:
Rich, titled, and charming…and in need of a wife by Wednesday. Blake turns to Sam Elliot, who isn’t the businessman he expected. Instead, Blake is faced with Samantha Elliot, beautiful and feisty with a voice men call 1-900 numbers to hear.

Samantha Elliot:
Owner of matchmaking firm Alliance and not on the marital menu…that is, until Blake offers her ten million dollars for a one-year contract. And there’s nothing indecent about this proposal. The money will really help with her family’s medical bills. All Samantha will need to do is keep her attraction to her new husband to herself and avoid his bed. 

But Blake’s toe-curling kisses and sexy charm prove too difficult for Sam to resist. It was a marriage contract that planned for everything…except falling in love



Monday, July 4, 2016

Until Lilly (Until #3) by Aurora Rose Reynolds



When Cash Mayson was forced to choose between the love of his life and his unborn child, he knew exactly what he had to do. No matter how broken it left him.

When Lilly Donovan was forced to accept that the guy she loved wasn’t who she thought he was and became a single mother, she knew exactly what she had to do. Proving just how strong she was.
What happens when years later you find out that everything you thought you knew was a lie?

Can two people who once loved each other overcome the obstacles that are thrown at them and fall in love all over again?

Cash Mayson had forgotten how it felt to be loved Until Lilly came back into his life. And now that he remembers, he will do everything within his power to keep not only the woman that he loves, but also his children.

The power of love is a beautiful thing.
 




Until Trevor (Until #2) by Aurora Rose Reynolds



Trevor Mayson had his life planned out - make the family business successful and play the field for a few more years before eventually settling down. Then he sees her. Liz Hayes was beautiful, shy and everything that he could ever want...but she didn't fit into his plans. After Trevor painfully rejects her, Liz finally starts to move on, but Trevor is finding it difficult to truly let her go. It seems the more he tries to stay away, the more intense his feelings for her become. Like a stretched rubber band, he can only take so much before snapping. 

Liz Hayes is done waiting for Trevor and isn't interested in getting her heart broken by him again, but Trevor is making it difficult for her to forget him when he shoves his way back into her life. 

Can Trevor prove to her that he is worth falling in love with again, and is he ready to change his life plan to let her into his heart?



Until November (Until #1)




November is looking forward to getting to know her father and the safety of a small town. After leaving the Big Apple and her bad memories for Tennessee, November starts working for her dad at his strip club doing the books. The one time she’s allowed there during club hours she runs into Asher Mayson. He’s perfect until he opens his mouth and makes assumptions. November wants nothing to do with Asher but too bad for November, fate has other plans. 

Asher Mayson has never had a problem getting a woman, that is until November. Now all he can think about is making November his and keeping her safe.



Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Unbuttoning the CEO (The Suits Undone #1)




As the CEO of a large tech company and a semi-reformed bad boy, Ethan Hill is used to calling the shots. But when he's sentenced to work two hundred hours of community service-for reckless driving, of all things-this chief executive needs to keep his real identity under wraps. Which gets increasingly difficult when he can't stop thinking about his sexy new (temporary) boss. 

The moment Graciela Ramirez meets Ethan, she's tempted to throw all professionalism out the window. She can't afford to get emotionally involved, but after a steamy session behind office doors, a no-strings-attached fling might be exactly what they need. He'll protect his secret. She'll protect her heart. What could possibly go wrong?




The Taming of the Billionaire (Billionaires and Bridesmaids #2)





Edie’s an overbearing cat behaviorist who’s not big on people. Magnus is a newly-rich game developer who likes to be in control. When the two of them meet at Gretchen and Hunter’s masquerade engagement party, the loathing is mutual. Unfortunately for them—and everyone else—they’re in the wedding party together and must deal with each other for the next few months.

But when Magnus’s younger brother falls for Edie’s sister, he begs for his brother’s help in concocting a plan to win her over. If Magnus can keep the prickly Edie occupied, his brother will have time to woo Edie’s sister. Of course, Magnus isn’t interested in the slightest, but Edie is…intriguing. And stubborn. And smart. And sexy. And they might have more in common than they thought.

Before long, it becomes a challenge between the two of them to see who will be tamed first. But how’s Edie going to react when she finds out that Magnus is using her? And how’s Magnus going to handle the fact that he’s fallen for a cat lady?
 





Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Falling for My Boss (One Night Stand #3)





When Elizabeth Jeffries was hired for a job with her party gram company, she had no idea that her new boss Scott Taylor was going to have such an effect on her. He was a handsome flirt and he liked to push the boundaries of their office relationship. Only Elizabeth, with the guidance of her best friend, has decided to push right back. She wants Scott to know that he’s not the only one that can play games. Thus begins the ultimate game of cat and mouse. They both begin to tease and lure each other into their webs and then something explosive happens. The games go too far and Elizabeth is pushed to the limit. Scott doesn’t know what to think when he finds out Elizabeth’s big secret and the reason why she took the job. The truth causes everything to blow up, however neither one of them were to know that that wasn’t to be the last job that Elizabeth would take that would bring her back into his world.



My Review :

Rating : 4 Books

I enjoyed reading this short read story. I like the characters in the story, you can easily relate with them. The only down side of the story, the conversation of Lacey and Elizabeth, they are much longer compared to the conversation of Scott and Elizabeth, the rest is good for me.

I can't wait for the next story, good job to the author.






Monday, July 13, 2015

Three Hard Lessons (Blindfold Club #2)




I am the woman men pay thousands of dollars to sleep with. I do what I love and what I'm so very good at.

Then he walks in and drops $30,000. He wants to talk. And kiss. And take me home.

In a single night, this man turns everything upside-down and has me breaking every rule I've lived by to keep men at a distance. I'm about to learn some lessons the hard way.

Don't tease him. Don't give him boundaries. And don't think you get a choice in who you love.
 




Three Simple Rules (Blindfold Club #1)




I would do anything for my dream job. Now I have to.

In order to save my skin at the office, I'm forced to sell it at an exclusive and illegal blindfold club. He paid thousands of dollars for one night to own me, but when my blindfold comes off, I want more. More nights, more rules, and more from this unavailable and uncompromising man.

Rule number one, no questions. Rule number two, no lies. But, rule number three? That's the hardest one to obey.




Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Ménage for the Night (For the Night #4)







Nine months had passed since the filthy night with Yasmin Taylor. Thankfully my clients in between had requested more conservative fantasies, dressing up as a cowboy, sex in an opera box, on top of a brand new Lamborghini in a city car park in daylight. Those sort of jobs I could carry out without reservation. Those jobs I was born to perform for. My next client is Ava Renshaw. Another regular, she’s the bored housewife of a successful international banker, who spends much of his time abroad, leaving her home alone and frustrated. While she loved the sessions we had, she kept telling me that she was craving more and that her fantasy was to be filled by two guys at the same time, but she was too self-conscious to go to a sex club like 710. I contacted one of my friends in the business, Trey Douglas, my go to guy for clients with an MMF fantasy. We’re about to show Ava why two sets of hands, as well as other appendages, are better than one.


My Review :

Author : C. J Fallowfield

Source : ARC in exchange for an honest review

Genre : New Adult

Rating : 5 Books


As expected C.J gave us a very beautiful,romantic and one of a kind novel.  When I read the synopsis but  not comfortable reading this story because I'm not in favor of a threesome but C. J did a very good job in expressing the true feelings of the characters in the story. 

I really like  Logan's character, he is so sweet and kind with his client. He is not selfish, though he did his job for money but he is considerate as well. 

For Trey, I think he is Logan's successor,though he is an amateur compared to Logan but he will be as good as Logan as well.

I'm very happy that Ava reunite again with her true love with Logan's help. See, Logan is very considerate man.

This was a great and entertaining short read, and I can’t wait to see Logan's plan for his dream girl.


You will not regret reading this book, trust me. 

Kudos to C.J









Monday, March 23, 2015

Book Blitz - Fragile Simplicity by Tara Neideffer



Book & Author Details:

Fragile Simplicity by Tara Neideffer
(Sweet Haven #2)
Publication date: January 29th 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Suspense

Synopsis:

It only took one letter to make every painful memory resurface. But it took Kyleigh Helton thirteen years to bury those memories. The question in that letter will force her to make a difficult decision. Forgive, or continue to let resentment and anger consume her fragile core.
The simple life she craves seems miles away when she’s dealing with an ex who won’t let her go and a boyfriend whose problems mimic a past she’d rather forget.
She realizes it’s time for things to change. But every decision and change she makes has a consequence, and she begins to wonder if she’s strong enough to handle them.
David Madison has been struggling with guilt and grief since his brother’s death and finds comfort in the one thing Kyleigh despises. When a phone call pushes him over the edge and guilt consumes him even more, he breaks a promise to Kyleigh that threatens to tear them apart.
As quickly as things fall back into place, his world shatters again, pushing him to the breaking point, and he begins to wonder how much more he can take before he turns to the one addiction that started it all.
But he can’t. He promised. He needs to stay strong for Kyleigh. Because now she needs him more than ever, and he won’t let her down again.
***This is book two in a trilogy but each book can stand-alone***
***Due to sexual content and language, this novel is intended for audiences ages 18+***





Fragile Simplicity Blog Excerpts


Excerpt 1:
Pulling out a handful of mail, she stood next to the mailbox as she shuffled through the stack. As her eyes fell on the last envelope, her hand flew to her mouth, almost as if she was containing a scream that had been buried for years. Her body refused to move as her mouth hung open in shock, her mind telling her that what she was seeing couldn’t be real. She stood there staring at the letter, her mind in its own world as everything around her seemed to stand still. Every noise outside seemed to stop and the only sound she heard was the rapid beating of her heart.
 Kyleigh gripped the white envelope with enough force that the edges began to crinkle and bend, her shaky hands making the letters bounce almost to the point that the name was unreadable, but even with blurry vision from fresh tears careening down her cheeks, there was no denying whose name was sprawled in a sloppy attempt at cursive handwriting. It was a name she could never forget.
How did he find me? The questioned pulsed over and over through her frazzled mind.
She absently reached out and placed her hand against the side of the mailbox for support as all the hurt and fear from so many years ago came crashing back into her. Her body began to tremble as buried emotions and deeply embedded memories lit up her mind like the continuous flash of a camera.
They were too much to handle.
          “Oh, God,” she finally choked out as sobs began to take over. She bent forward and placed her hands on her knees as all the emotion fell from her in the form of hot tears. Seconds turned to minutes and time seemed to drag on forever as the past tore through her fragile core. Pain, fear, and anger. All these emotions flooded her body without remorse.



Excerpt 2:

Sliding the black helmet down on her head, she looked at David already sitting on the bike, and watched as he readjusted the mirrors. The vibrations of the black Harley reverberated against the garage, and she felt excitement build up inside her. Adrenaline was ricocheting throughout her body, causing her hands to tremble from the rush, and making her fingers fumble with the straps of her helmet.
          “Come here, let me help,” David said, over the roar of the engine.
          Leaning her head within his reach, she smiled at him as he fastened her helmet, the gesture making her feel like a little kid.
          “All right, you’re secured and ready,” he said, giving her helmet a smack and motioning for her to hop on back.
          She gripped his shoulder as she threw her leg over and then wrapped her arms tightly around his waist. Pressing her chest firmly against his back, she asked, “How’s this?”
          Cocking his head to the left, he gave her a sideways look, showing a dimple filled cheek as his grin widened. “Perfect.”
          Revving the engine, David slowly took off down the driveway as she tightened her grip. After a bumpy ride down the gravel drive, he turned right out of his place, taking them farther into the country. As they picked up speed, the vibration of the bike between her legs intensified, and she closed her eyes, enjoying the feel of the wind whipping against her face. The feeling of flying down the open road was indescribable and she had the urge to let go of David and hold both her arms out. Her shirt ruffled up from the breeze and strands of her dark hair flew out from under the helmet. She inhaled a deep breath, already feeling as though the fresh air was cleansing her soul. This was exactly what she needed.
          “Oh, my God, David, this is unbelievable. I can’t believe you never took me out on this!” she yelled, smacking the back of his shoulder.
          “Hey!” he yelled, laughing. “Sorry, you just never mentioned going, so I guess I never thought you’d be interested.”
          Resting her chin on his shoulder, she said, “With the vibration between my legs and the feel of all my stress flying away with the wind, it’s almost as wonderful as sex.”
          “What? No way am I letting my bike outperform me. I’ll give you the ride of your life later tonight,” he said, casting a look over his shoulder at her as his hand reached around and squeezed her thigh.
          “Hmm, I’ll be sure to take you up on that,” she said, pressing her lips against his neck.


Excerpt 3:

Bringing her gaze up to his, the smile she wore took away all the pain from a few moments ago. “I love you, David.”
Clasping her cheeks in each hand, he gave her one last look as he pressed his lips against hers. His kiss was slow, his tongue moving against hers in a rhythm that mimicked a slow dance, where the music that played was the sound of their racing hearts and rapid breathing.
With one hand gripping the small of her back, the other tangled in her brown waves, he began taking small steps forward, directing her backwards to the couch. Once the back of her legs hit the cushions, they found themselves falling onto the black leather. He leaned back on his legs, staring down at the heavy rise and fall of her chest, and finding it hard to take his eyes off the fullness of her lips. He touched the outline of her cleavage that was peeking out of her shirt, and as he slid his finger along the crease, he watched her eyes momentarily close. Pulling his bottom lip into his mouth, he thrust her shirt down with both hands, giving him the access he craved. The whimper that escaped her mouth teased him even more, and she arched her back, begging him to take her. A low growl rumbled deep in his throat as he bent down and pulled her breast into his mouth.
The urgency in her touch as she gripped the back of his head pushed him along, and before he knew what he was doing, he was yanking the rest of her clothes off, along with his own.
As their bodies folded together, their desire ignited even more, and before long they were in a seamless rhythm as each breath, each kiss, and each gasp conveyed the feelings that they couldn’t find the right words for. They spoke with their bodies and it was a feeling David had feared he’d never experience again.

Excerpt 4:

She squirmed and writhed underneath his weight, doing everything she could to get free. She couldn’t believe this was happening. She was so close to escaping.
“Get off of me!” she screamed as she dug her nails into the hardwood floor and tried pulling herself forward. Faint scratches developing on the hardwood floor were remnants of her despair and the drops of tears landing next to them showed the extent of her fear. She felt his grip on her thighs loosening and she began throwing punches blindly at his face as she continued to try and get herself free. Her ribs screamed with every movement but she bit down on the pain and continued on. There was no time to stop and breathe.
Squirming, she finally wriggled a few more inches out of his grasp. With his hands now hooked around her ankles, she threw one more hit to the top of his head. Her hand burned from the contact and she yelped from the pain but she continued to keep wailing her fist into his head and face. When he let one hand go to shield himself from more of her punches, she yanked her free foot away and aimed for his face. She felt her foot make contact with something and she hoped it was his nose. Kicking one leg, she began crawling forward, her arms burning and his hands trying to snag her legs. But with each kick, she managed to put a little more distance between them.
As another kick hit him square on the jaw, and she felt the absence of his hands on her body, she scrambled to make a run for it. She was slow to get back on her feet, and a few steps down the hall she felt her body ignite with even more pain as he slammed her into the wall.
Her face connected with the dingy white wall and a muffled cry was shoved out of her mouth as his body held her against the wall. She was trapped again. The dampness trailing down her cheeks angered her and she wished her hands were free so she could wipe them away before Brad saw them. She didn’t want him to see her upset. The only thing she wanted him to see was her determination to stay alive. And the hate she felt for him.


Excerpt 5:

He blew out a ragged breath, wondering how much she’d had to drink tonight, and how much longer he could hear his mother ask for his dead brother before he pulled out a bottle himself. It seemed they were all just a bunch of drunks. None of them could get by in life without the help of alcohol, including him. The need for alcohol ran through his blood as much as blood itself.
“Mom, you need to understand that Randy is not here any longer.” He paused for a moment, dreading the next thing he had to say. He’d said it enough in the past six months to her that he knew exactly what her reaction was going to be. “Randy’s dead, Mom. Remember?”
“You are a liar, David! How dare you say that about him. He’s staying at your place, remember. He’s been living with you now for a year. Is he out somewhere? He’s probably out with a girl, isn’t he?” his mom said with a little laugh that sounded maniacal, making him shiver.
“No, Mom. Randy’s been dead for six months now. Where’s Roger?”
More crying sounded through the phone and David grabbed a fistful of his hair in irritation. Going through this with his mom was almost as bad as going through Randy’s death all over again. It was as if he was re-living it every time he had this conversation with her.
          The need to drink the guilt away hit him hard. Hearing his mother ask for her son through a mess of confused tears tore him apart. He knew it had to be his payback for letting Randy drive away that night. God was punishing him for doing nothing. He was making him re-live it every week, through his mother. He sucked in a sharp breath, knowing he deserved all of this, but also knowing he couldn’t handle it. He needed something to dull this ache, to make him not care anymore; with each sob coming from the line the need grew even stronger.
The crying was getting so loud now that it began to hurt his head. He couldn’t console her, she didn’t want it, wouldn’t listen. She just wanted to torture him with his guilt; hang it above his head until he caved and opened the bottle. He had the bottle in his hand before he even knew what he was doing. He looked at the bottle. So many conflicting emotions coursed through him that he didn’t know which way was up and which way was down. He just wanted it to stop.
One way or the other.
          He opened the bottle and brought it to his mouth just as his mom cried out Randy’s name in a sob that sounded broken and ragged—just like him.
          With the alcohol beginning to burn his guilt away, he said, “Mom, I’m sorry for everything,” and hung the phone up.







AUTHOR BIO:
Tara Neideffer was born and raised in Indiana with a love for animals, especially horses. As a child, she could always be found in the saddle, running her horse at full speed through open fields. She also has a love of ghost stories and a morbid fascination with watching murder mystery shows. When she's not busy writing, she's taking care of her animals, spending time with her family or reading. She still lives in Indiana with her husband, daughter, and stepson, on twenty acres, with too many animals to name.

Connect with me online!





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Book Blitz - Royal Date by Sariah Wilson




Book & Author Details:

Royal Date by Sariah Wilson
Publication date: March 3rd 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Synopsis:

This Cinderella didn’t plan on a prince . . .
Kat MacTaggart is a girl who has a plan for everything—including her holiday ski trip to Monterra with her best friend. Everything is going according to plan until she finds herself careening out of control down a mountainside and being rescued by a guy who looks like Superman’s hotter Italian cousin.
HRH Prince Nico is intrigued by the woman he saved on the slopes and her refusal to date him. He offers Kat a deal—let him show her his country and he’ll pay her to write articles that will help Monterra’s tourism industry. Kat agrees, but given her past and lingering distrust of men, she has one condition—absolutely no kissing.
Thanks to the claims of a jealous British noblewoman and the schemes of a meddling paparazzo, Kat’s rule doesn’t seem to be a problem at first. But the more Kat gets to know Nico and the people around him, the harder it is to remember her keep-your-distance plan. Should she stick to it or risk everything for a chance at happily ever after?




EXCERPT 1 (1,367 words - this is the very beginning of the book)

“A little light reading?” His accent was faint, and I couldn’t quite place it. Italian-ish. But I didn’t care enough to ask. I felt him standing next to my stuffed armchair, hovering, and sighed. What was it with European men? American guys didn’t give me the time of day. But over here I was like some kind of dude catnip.
            I didn’t take my eyes off of my book. “Sorry, not interested.”
            He moved away from me, sitting in an armchair next to mine. Well, I suppose this was what I got for hanging out in the lodge’s lobby. I should have stayed in my room until my best friend, Lemon, was ready to leave.
            “You’re not interested in Shakespeare?” he asked. I could hear the amusement in his voice.
            “I’m not interested in you.”
            “Why not?” This guy just could not take a hint. I turned to look at him, ready to tell him off, and nearly choked.
            Gorgeous was an understatement. Tall, athletic, high cheekbones, black hair, and blue eyes. Like Superman’s hotter Italian cousin. He was dressed for a day of skiing—a black turtleneck with an unzipped royal-blue winter coat. And he topped it off with a smile, a blinding, unbelievable smile that nearly did me in.
            He leaned in conspiratorially, and I got a whiff of his cologne. He smelled as good as he looked. His glacier-blue eyes were full of intensity and fun, and I wanted to sit and stare into them all day. “I’ve been told I’m very charming.”
            I didn’t doubt it. I would never have admitted it out loud, but I was very charmed. Like I was the snake and he was playing a hypnotizing tune that only I could hear.
            And I didn’t like the way that made me feel.
            Plus, I had to consider reality in this situation. No way could this guy really be hitting on me. He probably dated supermodels and I . . . didn’t date at all. Like, ever. He was so out of my league.
            I’d never been so tongue-tied before. I was typically handy with the quips and comebacks. But I couldn’t respond. I had to look away from him and back at my book. The words on the page swam around in front of me, and I was unable to focus on a single one. I needed him to leave so I could regain my equilibrium. “Nothing personal. Italian men don’t do it for me.”
            I was the lyingest liar who ever lied.
            “How fortunate for me then that I am Monterran.” He had a deep, rumbly, smooth voice that felt like honey and laughter mixed together. I wasn’t immune, and he hadn’t been kidding. He really was disgustingly charming.
            My mouth twitched, wanting to smile. I turned a page, pretending to be entranced. I was on Christmas break, I reminded myself. I was here in Monterra to ski with Lemon. It was the last time we would be together before getting our master’s degrees in a few months. I had priorities and plans, and SuperHottie was not on the list.
            And if I were being truly honest—he kind of scared me. A guy like that would have expectations, and I wasn’t like other girls.
            “I’m Nico, by the way.”
            “That’s nice for you.”
            But he again failed to parse out the subtext here (and I wasn’t being very subtextual). Short of blatantly telling him to get lost, what else could I do? Would I have to be rude? Because instead of realizing that I was a lost cause, he laughed. He laughed and it did funny things to my insides. I wanted to laugh with him. And crawl into his lap and beg him to be mine.
            “And you are?” he prompted.
            “Still not interested.” It was becoming a bigger lie as time passed. If some other guy had pursued me this way, I would have thought it was creepy and called for security to have him escorted off the mountain. Instead, I secretly hoped he would keep talking to me.
            I thought he’d finally gotten the message as an entire minute of silence passed between us before he reached over to look at my book’s spine to see the title. I gulped in response—his hands were large and masculine, and I wondered how his long fingers would feel interlaced with mine.
            I shook my head and let out a shaky breath. I had gone seriously crazy. Like jumping-on-Oprah’s-couch crazy.
            “Macbeth? I would have guessed Romeo and Juliet.”
            I couldn’t help myself. I had to look at him. “Two fifteen-year-olds who kill themselves in the name of love after only knowing each other for three days? No thanks.”
            That smile. He was killing me. “You don’t find it romantic?”
            “I don’t find anything romantic about suicide.”
            “You don’t think love at first sight is romantic?” he persisted.
            I’d never believed such a thing possible before this moment, but now I was sort of getting where Romeo had been coming from. Nico was literally the most handsome man I’d ever met in real life. If anyone could convince me to believe in love at first sight, he was the guy.
            “Nope,” I finally managed. He smiled like he didn’t believe me.
            “Nico! Andiamo!”
            Nico looked over his shoulder at a group of guys who were waving and calling out to him. He shouted something back to them, and they headed out the door, hooting and hollering as they went.
            He stood up. He was taller than I’d first thought. Yummy tall. Way taller than me tall, and that wasn’t easy to find. “How long will you be in Monterra?”
            It was such a personal question my gut reaction was to tell him to mind his own business, but to my surprise, I found myself saying, “For the next couple of weeks.”
            “May I see your phone?”
            I didn’t actually own a cell phone. I could barely afford food.
            “No phone, and I’m not phone adjacent.”
            Nico smiled again, and I wanted to melt into my chair. He reached inside his coat, pulled out a small white business card, and handed it to me. “If you do ever find yourself adjacent to a phone while you’re here, please call. I would love to take you to dinner before you leave.”
            When I reached out he took my hand and turned it over, leaning down to kiss my knuckles. A lightning arc exploded inside my hand and zoomed around my entire body, all the way down to my toenails. I might have gasped, but I decided to pretend that I would never do something so lame.
            He straightened back up to put the card in my shaking hand, closing my fingers around it. “I look forward to your call,” he said as he walked backward toward the exit. “Ciao, bella.”
            He left and it took my eyes a second to adjust. Like I’d been staring at the sun and now had third-degree burns on my retinas. Who did that? Who just kissed people’s hands like that? This wasn’t the fifteenth century. So weird. And exciting. But weird.
            The business card was white and thick. Obviously expensive. There was only a series of numbers, presumably his telephone number. I flipped the card over. Blank. Who had a card without a name on it? Just their phone number?
            I’d tell you who. A guy who kissed your hand.
            I closed my book and put it on the coffee table in front of me. I looked at the card again, turning it over a couple of times as I considered my decision.
            I didn’t need this while I was here. And I couldn’t let Lemon see it or she’d hogtie me and force me to call him. I was here to relax, forget about my school troubles, and enjoy time with my best friend. Boys were not part of the equation.
            A massive fire burned in the fireplace across the room. Decision made, I walked over and before I could change my mind, threw the card into the fire.
            And informed myself that I absolutely, totally and completely did not regret it.

EXCERPT 2 (528 words


Now his fingers were playing with the few tendrils that had escaped my bun. I went still and forgot to breathe. “There is something I’ve wondered since the moment I met you.”
            “What?” My voice sounded breathy and weird.
            “What this would be like.”
            He was going to kiss me, and I was going to let him. My heart started trying to pound its way out of my chest.
            I should have stopped him. I should have been afraid. But I wasn’t.
            His kiss was feathery light, barely touching me. His lips were warm, soft, and strong. If I’d realized earlier they’d feel like this against my own, I probably would have spent a lot more time studying them. My eyes drifted shut as my stomach went completely hollow, and a warm thickness started spreading through all of my limbs. He kissed me again, gentle and persuasive.
            “Relax, bella,” he murmured against my lips, running his fingers along my jawbone. I realized that I was clenching his shirtfront with my fists. I loosened my grip. He continued to plant sweet and soft kisses on my lips. “This works better if you kiss me back,” he said with a smile as he leaned back slightly to look at me, his eyes glittery and intense. He ran his thumb along my lower lip, which made all sorts of unmentionable things happen to my insides.
            Leave it to me to mess something up as basic as kissing. Fortunately, I wasn’t a total idiot. I could do what he was doing. Scared as I was, I managed to give myself a pep talk. I was twenty-four years old. I was the oldest person on the planet who had never been kissed. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect setting, or a more perfect man. So gathering up every bit of courage I possessed, I leaned in to kiss him. Just a small peck. A little smooch. It was all I could manage.
            I pulled back to see a delighted and appreciative look in his eyes.
            “That wasn’t as bad as I expected.”
            “Not as bad as you expected? Katerina, I can do much better than ‘not as bad as you expected.’”
            I hadn’t meant to issue a challenge, but he accepted it anyway. I thought I heard him growl before he pressed our lips together more firmly, his hands framing and holding my head in place as he kissed me over and over. It was all I could do to keep up. Electricity exploded everywhere he touched and kissed me.
            Was it possible to die from a kiss?
            My hands moved from his shirt to his wrists, and I felt like I was clinging on for dear life. His kisses started to escalate in intensity until he suddenly stopped. He leaned his forehead against mine, and we were both breathing fast.
            “I think . . . I think it’s time for me to return you to your room.”
I nodded, unable to think.
            He could have said, “I think it’s time for us to get on a spaceship and fly to the moon,” and I would have agreed to that, too.


EXCERPT 3 (609 words)


          What was he doing with his fingers? Everywhere he touched me he left little pools of flame behind.
            He was unfairly using his masculine wiles against me, and I was stupidly giving in. I opened my eyes to see him studying me as he slowly ran his knuckles against my cheek. “So is that a yes?”
            “It will be a yes. I will pretend to date you, go where you want me to, write what you want me to write. On one condition.”
            He waited for me to continue.
            “No more kissing.”
           His hands stilled. “Ma che?” I guessed that was Italian for “What the frak did you just say?”
            “If you think about it, you want me to stay objective when I write the story, don’t you? So we should take kissing off the table, right?” I didn’t know if I was trying to convince him or me.
            “So you’re worried that my kisses will sway you and harm your objectivity?” He paused, as if considering. “That’s probably true.” He went back to lightly caressing me, and I worried that I might have to start planning my own funeral because I was dying.
            But I couldn’t let on just how much he affected me. “Full of yourself much?”
            He had his face close to mine, and I could feel his smile, hear it in his voice. He moved to put his lips right above mine. “You and I both know that I could prove as much right now.”
            Of all the things I expected him to do and say, the next thing to come out of his mouth was not one of them. “I can do that. If you don’t want me to kiss you, I won’t. I will wait until you ask me to.”
            Usually I would have been like, so not going to happen, but in this case . . . well, I hoped I was strong enough to stick to my guns.
            Nico ran his fingers through my hair, and I unconsciously tilted my head to lean into his open hand. “Am I allowed to still touch you? I’m not sure I can promise not to touch you.”
            “Uh . . .” I meant to say something. I did. He completely disrupted all of my brain waves.
            “Because it would seem you like touching me as well.” I opened my eyes and looked down. I had both of my hands on his bare chest. When had that happened? I didn’t even remember doing it. My hands obviously had minds of their own. I clenched them shut and put them back in my lap.
            “Touching is okay, I guess,” I said in that same breathy voice that I only had around him, and now felt like my new permanent one. To be fair, and putting aside the fact that I enjoyed it, Monterrans had repeatedly proven themselves to be an affectionate and kind of handsy people. I couldn’t exactly say no to him for something that was cultural, could I?
            Yes, even in my foggy haze I was aware of my pathetic attempts to justify and rationalize.
            “Good. Although I don’t know if it’s very fair to give a man a taste of heaven and tell him he can’t have it again.”
            My heart barreled against my chest as he did that thing where he ran his thumb gently over my lips, across my jawline, back to my lips. I sort of loved that. I would probably give up my firstborn child if we could just stay in this spot all night doing that.
            I was going to lose every last bit of resolve I had.


EXCERPT 4 (509 words)


The sun had just barely started to rise when I woke up. I had a small moment of disorientation, not sure where I was or what was going on. I quickly remembered because Nico had shifted at some point in the night and was lying on his side, facing me. He still had his arms wrapped around me, and our legs were intertwined. I had never been this physically close to someone. My nerves were hyperaware and sensitive at every point where our bodies made contact. And there were a lot of contact points.
            Our faces were practically touching. A low, steady thud started in the base of my stomach, and my blood sizzled and snapped.
            “I could get used to this,” he murmured, his eyes still closed.
            “What?” My voice sounded stupid.
            He opened his eyes, and his piercing blue gaze turned the thudding into drumming. “Waking up every morning with you in my arms.”
            “I thought you said you had insomnia.”
            “I do. Last night was the best night’s sleep I’ve had in I don’t know how long.” He started tracing patterns on my back with his fingers, running them up and down, making me cold and hot at the same time. “It seems I’ll just have to fall asleep with you every night if I ever want to sleep that well again.”
            “If I was with you every night, we both know there would be no sleeping going on.” It was probably one of the boldest things I’d ever said.
            He gave me a lazy grin. “That’s true.”
            Then his fingers were in my hair, and I stretched into it like a purring cat, wanting more. I closed my eyes for a second, reveling in the sensations. I tightened my hold on him, without even realizing it. I only knew I wanted to be closer to him.
            His fingers stilled, and I opened my eyes to look at him. He was staring at my face. It was more than a little disconcerting. “What are you looking at?”
            “I’m counting your freckles.”
            I put my hands over my nose. “Don’t do that.”
            “Why?”
            “I hate my freckles.”
            “They’re adorable.” He moved my hands and kissed the bridge of my nose. He was lucky I didn’t actually spontaneously combust and set us both on fire. “You’re adorable. Beautiful.”
            I glanced off to the side, not able to endure the intensity of his gaze.. My pulse skittered wildly.
            I looked back at him, studying him in return. He hadn’t pressured me or made me feel dumb or dumped me or anything that I expected a man to do if I told him I wouldn’t kiss him. He had respected me. Spoiled me beyond belief. Wooed me with his words and his actions. Had proved himself reliable and worthy of my trust in every way.
            And my affection.
            I closed the small distance between us and said, “Thank you...”
            Then I kissed him.
            He pulled back, looking serious. “Does this mean . . . ?” His question trailed off.
            “Yes.”








AUTHOR BIO:
Sariah Wilson has never jumped out of an airplane, never climbed Mt. Everest, and is not a former CIA operative. She has, however, been madly, passionately in love with her soulmate and is a fervent believer in happily ever afters--which is why she writes romance. She has published five happily ever after stories. She grew up in southern California, graduated from Brigham Young University (go Cougars!) with a semi-useless degree in history, and is the oldest of nine (yes, nine) children. She currently lives with the aforementioned soulmate and their four children in Utah, along with three tiger barb fish, a cat named Tiger, and a recently departed hamster that is buried in the backyard (and has nothing at all to do with tigers).

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