Today we have the blog tour for The Lucky Heart by Devney Perry! Be sure to grab your copy now!
Title: The Lucky Heart
Author: Devney Perry
Genre: Contemporary Romance
About The Lucky Heart:
Life on his ranch could be their future. If they can overcome their past.
Felicity’s life story reads like the script to a bad soap opera. Girl’s high-school boyfriend becomes a drug addict. Girl falls for boyfriend’s best friend. Girl leaves them both behind only to return home years later for murdered ex-boyfriend’s funeral. Now she’s back home in Montana, ready to start fresh. She’s got a long list of amends to make and relationships to rebuild, including one with the man who has owned her heart for sixteen years.
Silas doesn’t need much. He’s got a great horse, close friends and the Lucky Heart ranch, but something has always been missing. He’s not an idiot. He knows the missing piece is Felicity. And now that she’s returned to Prescott, he’s got a second chance to win her heart. This time, the only thing standing in his way is history. Drudging up the past is going to be about as painful as playing tug of war with barbed wire. But if they can heal old wounds, he’ll get the girl he should have had all along.
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“Seems like all we’ve done these last two years is fuck and fight. We’ve got to figure out a way to be around each other now that you’re back. I don’t want to bump into you on the street and watch you run in the other direction.”
I couldn’t agree more. “We used to be friends once. Maybe we could get back to that.”
“Friends would be good.”
Silas pulled off his faded brown baseball hat and combed his fingers through his hair. It was getting a bit long and could probably use a trim, not that I’d advocate for one. When he was on top of me, my hands loved to wander through those soft strands and grip them tight. That and his sculpted ass.
Oh, lordy. Control yourself, Felicity! We had just agreed to be friends. I had made a rule. No sex with Silas. What was wrong with me?
“Are you okay?” Silas asked.
My cheeks were flushed and I was starting to sweat. “Great. This shrimp is just really spicy,” I lied.
He dug back into his food as the awkward silence descended again. While I chewed, my eyes wandered around the room so I wouldn’t stare at the man in my guest chair.
The Fan Mountain Inn had impeccably clean and stylish rooms. I had plenty of space for my abundant luggage, and the wide desk provided a more than adequate workspace. But right now, this room was much, much too small.
Silas sat by the door while I swiveled nervously at my desk chair. Between us was the bed. The same bed where we’d had sex just a week ago. Seeing him next to it wasn’t helping me push thoughts of sex aside.
“You were jealous, weren’t you? The other day when you saw me talking to Maisy in the office.”
“What?” I said, pretending to be surprised. “I wasn’t jealous.” My declaration came out in a high-pitched squeak.
Silas smirked, trying to fight back a smile, but it was pointless. He burst out laughing, filling the room with sound as his head tipped back and he let loose.
Even though I was embarrassed he’d busted me on the jealousy thing, I couldn’t keep the corners of my mouth down. Silas’s laughter was a deep rumble, a hearty sound that could warm the coldest of souls. I hadn’t heard it nearly enough lately.
The last time I remembered hearing him laugh had been at Jess and Gigi’s wedding. We’d both had too much to drink and had found ourselves in the backseat of his truck. He’d discovered the Spanx that my satin dress required and had laughed his ass off as he tried to yank them off. That seemed like eons ago.
Silas got control of his laughter and bent forward, resting his elbows on his thighs. He shook his head a few times and then lifted his eyes to mine as he smiled.
Breathtaking. He was breathtaking.
Silas’s smile transformed his face. Dimples broke across his cheeks. His eyes warmed and crinkled. Those soft lips parted, revealing his flawless white teeth.
I was a sucker for that smile and smolder. All he had to do was snap his fingers and I’d leap over the bed and crawl into his lap.
“You’re blushing, Felicity. Are you going to lie and blame it on the shrimp again?”
About the Author:
Devney lives in Montana with her husband and two children. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her kids. She loves reading and, after consuming hundreds of books, decided to share her own stories.
Enter Devney's Giveaway:a Rafflecopter giveaway
Title: Slam: A Colorado Smoke Novel
Author: Andee Michelle
Genre: Sports Romance
His intensity on the field,
His drive to win the World Series,
And scoring on the first date.
Gearing up for the biggest season of his career, Slam is determined to focus on his game, calling a time out on anything considered a distraction. Including Layne Scott.
Layne Scott doesn’t do complicated.
Independent and focused on raising her daughter, Layne is a woman running a business dominated by men. Managing the sports bar her father left her, she has no time for the arrogant ball player who keeps strutting through her door. With chiseled good looks in baseball pants, Slam Nash is a temptation she can’t afford.
**Content Notice: This book contains adult themes, strong language and sexual situations. Recommended for readers eighteen (18) years of age and older.**
Although Andee grew up a military brat and traveled the world with her family, she has made her home in southwest Idaho with her husband and two sons. Working in the legal field, shuttling her boys around, chasing her two crazy dogs and reigning in her adrenaline junky husband keeps her busy. She has always had a passion for reading and writing, even as a child. Andee loves a great glass of wine, reading late into the night, and spending time in the mountains with her family and friends.
Series: The Jewel Trilogy #1
Author: Trish Beninato
Genre: YA Fantasy Romance
In a community full of supernatural powers, eighteen-year-old Jewel longs for a life of normalcy. But nothing in her life is ordinary. And suddenly she discover she's more abnormal than she ever realized--complete with a past she never knew existed. Once a goddess from ancient Greece, Jewel is the main reason everyone has their special abilities.
As she struggles with her newfound knowledge, Jewel encounters the mysterious god of Egypt, Anubis. With a past she has no recollection of, she tries to deny the pull she has for the sexy god. But, destiny has other plans. As she uncovers more secrets about who she really is, Jewel is pulled into a dangerous world surrounded by a prophecy--a prophecy that both terrifies and intrigues her. Will Jewel accept who she once was for a chance to become who she's meant to be?
Trish Beninato is a young adult fantasy/scifi indie author, who has an unhealthy love for Marvel comics and Star Wars. She is desperately trying to make thirty the new twenty and lives in Colorado with her husband, three children and her adorable rescue pup. She was born in Indiana and raised around the world, spending most of her youth in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. She has a love for traveling and moving to new places thanks to being a child of the military and now spouse to a military soldier. In her spare time she works with young children, paints and hikes around the Rocky Mountains.
Title: When We Swing
Author: Kyla Ross
Genre: Erotic Thriller
Release Date: August 15, 2017
Friends have a way of breaking a person out of their comfort zone . . .
Mark has always felt like an outsider. Growing up, being bullied and teased, he doubted his life would ever get better. Then he meets his new college roommate, Blain Prazzel.
Blain is the opposite of Mark, popular and oozing a sex appeal women can’t resist. Mark would kill to live in Blain’s world and gets his chance when Blain invites him and their roommate, John Motley, to a party.
After college, they go into business together and quickly become an overnight success. But when they each find their mates; their friendship is put to the test.
Will these women interfere with their bond or will they find a new adventure awaits each of them? Where darkness and light sing their own forbidden melody of taboo? Where words, when spoken, have the power to change their lives forever?
Kyla Ross is a horror, thriller, and dark fiction writer from Detroit, Michigan. She posts suspense and horror flash fiction on her blog at kyrobooks.com and is the author of a gruesome, suspenseful short story series titled A Trinity of Wicked Tales and an erotic thriller novel titled When We Swing—An Erotic Thriller. Kyla’s extreme horror novel, Hotel Holly, will be released fall 2017.
Title: A Change of View
Series: The Northern Lights Collection
Author: Freya Barker
Genre: Romantic Suspense Standalone
Release Date: August 16, 2017 Cover Designer: Rebel Edit & Design
What if one morning you look in the mirror and no longer recognize the person looking back?
When Leelo can no longer identify herself by the roles that once defined her, it's both terrifying and liberating. Oh, she feels the loss, the grief, and then the anger, but when she inherits property up north, she jumps at the promise of freedom and independence.
Yet not everyone in her new community is what they seem, starting with the surly mountain man down the road.
As owner of the local fishing lodge, Roar is content with his everyday life. And the older he gets, the less he appreciates change. So when a blue-haired, tattooed ‘city girl’ moves into the old motel, shaking up his daily routine, he’s none too pleased.
Still, something about the woman’s easy smile and almost reckless grit has him step up as her keeper.
I slap my thigh where a mosquito just bit me. I wipe at another one that lands on my arm, and pretty soon the buzzing is loud around my head, and I’m frantically waving my hand around my face. A blood-sucking army is out tonight, and I scramble to my feet, snatch up the now empty bottle, and hustle toward the sanctuary of my house.My heart lodges in my throat when I see a figure detach itself from the shadows of the porch.“Was wondering how long it would fucking take before you came running.”I bend over, gasping to get air in my lungs, when I hear the voice.“I swear, Riordan Doyle…one day you’ll be the death of me.”“Not what I had in mind,” he chuckles easily, as he grabs my arm, drags me inside, and out of the way of the charging mosquitoes.“What are you doing here?” I ask, as he takes the bottle from my hand, sets it on the counter, and pulls me into my living room. There he drops down on the threadbare couch and tugs me down beside him. “I thought you went home?”“I did,” he confirms, throwing his arm over my shoulder and tugging me to his chest. “And I was just putting my feet up on the coffee table when I realized I didn’t want to be there.”“No?”“No,” he repeats. “Couldn’t relax. Started thinking about this…thing…between us. And you know what? Waiting for the right time is for the fucking birds.”“It is?”“It absolutely fucking is,” he says with conviction, curving his free hand along my jaw and turning my face toward him.His hazel eyes are almost black in the scarce light of my living room, his heavy-lidded gaze roaming my features before settling on my lips.“I’m thinking right now sounds like the right time.”I can feel the deep rumble of his voice down to my toes, and my own drops a few octaves lower as well.“You do?” I mutter breathlessly as his head bends down.It’s clear from my distinctly unimaginative responses that my brain cells have signed off for the day. I’m starting to sound like a goddamn parrot, but Roar doesn’t give me time to linger on that thought. His mouth is already on mine and his tongue is demanding entry.One moment I’m tucked beside him on the couch, and the next I’m on my back, Roar’s heavy frame covering me, his lips still firmly fused to mine. Good God the man can kiss.
Freya Barker inspires with her stories about 'real’ people, perhaps less than perfect, each struggling to find their own slice of happy. She is the author of the Cedar Tree Series and the Portland, ME, novels.
Freya is the recipient of the RomCon “Reader’s Choice” Award for best first book, “Slim To None,” and is a finalist for the 2016 Kindle Book Awards for “From Dust”. She currently has two complete series and three anthologies published, and is working on two new series; La Plata County FBI—ROCK POINT, and Northern Lights. She continues to spin story after story with an endless supply of bruised and dented characters, vying for attention!
Wild Card, an all-new contemporary STANDALONE by New York Times Bestselling author Karina Halle is available NOW!!!
Wild Card is a standalone novel and the first book in the North Ridge Trilogy about rough and rugged Canadian mountain men, the Nelson brothers. Canada’s never felt so hot.
She swore she’d never go back home.
She swore she’d never see the man who broke her all those years ago.
But you don’t always get to choose your path.
And sometimes that path is as wild and rugged as the heart.
Rachel Waters thought she saw the last of the small mountain town of North Ridge, British Columbia, when she left six years ago. But while her advertising career blossomed beneath the skyscrapers of Toronto, her mother’s sudden illness has the 26-year old returning to North Ridge to care for her, putting her career on hold while dealing with family secrets, regrets and unresolved goodbyes.
Shane Nelson has always been a bit of a wild card. The youngest of three brothers, Shane’s spent most of his life being underestimated and misunderstood. With his quiet intensity, classic good looks and thoughtful demeanor, he’s an enigma on horseback, managing his father’s sprawling ranch on the slopes of North Ridge.
But while Shane remains the quintessential brooding cowboy, complete with an arsenal of inner demons, all of that changes when Rachel steps back into his life.
She was the girl he pushed away.
Now she’s the girl who wishes she could leave.
Despite the odds, Shane will do everything to convince Rachel he needs a second chance that he doesn’t deserve but when the two of them head off into the wilderness together in search of lost cattle, more than just their hearts are at stake.
Whether it's love or lives on the line, one thing is for sure: always bet on the wild card.
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2fG5PnV
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2fGzpcM
Add to GoodReads: https://goo.gl/6WuDjh
Meet Karina:Karina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of The Pact, Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, Dirty Angels and over 20 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.
Halle is represented by the Root Literary and is both self-published and published by Simon & Schuster and Hachette in North America and in the UK.
Connect with Karina:
Join her Reader Group: https://goo.gl/wpCBSS
Stay up to date with Karina by signing up for her newsletter here: https://goo.gl/Ve4eCh
Today we have the teaser reveal for Stripping Her Defenses by Amanda Adams! Check it out and preorder your copy today!
Title: Stripping Her Defenses
Author: Amanda Adams
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 15th
About Stripping Her Defenses:
Regret is a strange thing…sometimes it drops a man to his knees. But sometimes it’s more like a slow drip poison. I’ve only ever regretted two things in my life. Walking away from her was one of them...
Duty? Honor? Love? After ten years in the military, they all mean nothing to Daniel, nothing but pain. He's home now, but war—and the secrets that followed him—hold him in an unrelenting grip. It’s dangerous to fall in love, dangerous to believe the past will stay buried where it can’t hurt the people around him, where it can’t hurt her.
But one look at Chloe and he remembers a time when all he worried about was getting his hands on her. Does he deserve a second chance? Hell no. But he's got a new mission now: Strip every single one of Chloe's defenses and win back her heart. He'll use any means necessary to seduce her. And when the past comes calling, he’ll stop at nothing to protect her. Because when he's on a mission, he always gets his mark.
Preorder Your Copy Today:
Regret is a strange thing. It can be powerful, so crippling it will knock a man to his knees, or so soft and insidious it’s like a slow-drip poison in the mind.
On any given day, I feel both sensations. Not for the decision I made, but for what it cost every single one of the men on the team that day. The truth changed each of us. Not one of us, had we known, would choose to bear this burden. But now that we’ve seen behind the magic curtain, it’s too late to go back. Troy is gone.
And since time travel isn’t an option...
My six years of war have ended, and I don’t feel like I belong in a suburban home, any more than I belong in this strange echo of a previous life I am destined to live. But now I’m home, back in Texas, with my sister making a fuss upstairs and everything I own in a handful of boxes on her basement floor. The house, the town, the sights and the sounds; none of it has changed, but I have. I could never be the same man I’d been when I left. Standing here, with sunlight streaming in through the windows and the smell of the neighbor’s barbecue filling the air of my sister’s immaculate, 100 year old craftsman style home with a porch that seems to stretch for miles, Americana reigns. I half expect a little girl named Betty June to ride up on her Schwinn bicycle, sporting pigtails and bobbysocks, to sell me a ticket to an ice cream social. I am so far removed from what happened in that cave in the mountains of Afghanistan that I should be relieved. Happy. Content.
Not haunted by the ghost of a man the entire world believes to be dead. It’s not his fault, but I resent him, just a little, for the weight of the secret we all now carry. Then again, I can walk down the street, eat at a restaurant and drive a car without constantly looking over my shoulder. It’s hard to hate a guy, a good man who can never go home again, when he has a target on his back.
“Daniel, are all of the boxes out of the truck?” My sister Sara’s voice echoes down the stairway, to the harsh surfaces of the finished basement as I bend over the last box, squinting to read the handwriting on the lid. The words looked something like “Iesh,” which probably meant they were Josh’s things. No one can read his handwriting without a magic de-coder ring.
“Yeah, I got the last of them,” I call out. Everything I own is in this room, and some things I wish I didn’t. The package that arrived yesterday from Italy with no return address? I haven’t opened it yet. I know who it’s from and I know what it will bring to my life. Chaos. Risk. Secrets. More secrets.
Shoving it into the bottom of my duffel bag, I head back up the ancient wood stairs. Painted lime green and scuffed from years of footfalls, they creak with every step.
Standing at the top of the stairs, Sara brushes her hands on her jeans then crosses her arms while she awaits my ascent. “I guess the nice thing about you military guys is that you don’t have a ton of stuff lying around.”
“That’s one way to look at it.” I left everything behind. Most of the stuff on the floor downstairs had been in storage the last few years, since the day I shipped out. I’m not even sure I’ll open the boxes. Everything I need to survive is in my oversized duffel bag next to the bed.
Everything I need to survive, and the one secret that might cost me everything, including the one woman I’ve never been able to forget.
About the Author:
Amanda Adams writes super-sexy, new adult and contemporary romance. A full time author, Amanda spends her days trying to walk more and type less. If she eats a salad for lunch, she makes sure to reward herself with chocolate after (as any reasonable woman would do.) Amanda believes in true love, love at first sight, and every other cliche because lightning struck her in high school and she's been happily married to her sweetheart ever since. However, she also knows, from personal experience, that life can big one great big, painful mess as well. Amanda believes in keeping things real. Her books are free of cheating--with a guaranteed HEA--but hold on tight: it's going to be one hell of a bumpy ride.
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Today we have the cover reveal for Speed by BB Easton! Check it out and pre-order your copy before release day on September 11th!
Title: SPEED Author: BB Easton Genre: New Adult Romance Release Day: September 11th
About SpeedBecause BB Easton had so much fun writing her bestselling, award-winning memoir, 44 CHAPTERS ABOUT 4 MEN, she decided to give each of her four men his own steamy standalone! SPEED is the second book in the 44 Chapters spin-off series—a gritty, taboo love triangle overflowing with dark humor and tangible teen angst. It is based on a true story. After her possessive, psychopathic, rage-fueled ex, Knight, joins the Marines, sixteen-year-old BB is left trying, and failing, to pick up the pieces of her shattered heart. It isn't until she meets Harley James—an easy-going, tattooed mechanic with a face as angelic as his habits are sinful—that she learns how to live again. How to laugh again. But will she learn to love again? Over Knight’s dead body.
Exclusive ExcerptWhen I woke up on my sixteenth birthday, I didn’t leap out of bed to go get my driver’s license. I wasn’t thinking about the appointment I had to buy my first car that afternoon—a car that I’d been saving for since the day I turned fifteen and was legally able to work. I didn’t give two shits about going to the mall, or opening presents, or eating a fucking piece of fucking cake. All I wanted for my birthday was to sleep through it, because whenever I was awake, so was my gnawing, soul-crushing pain. I could feel it chewing through the lining of my stomach, devouring my once bubbly personality, sucking the energy from my bones like marrow, swallowing my will to live. Being eaten alive hurt. Being awake hurt. Being asleep didn’t. I reluctantly opened my eyes and glanced over at the nightstand. The red numbers on the clock announced that I’d slept past noon again. The blueberry muffin sitting next to it with a candle shoved haphazardly in the top told me that my mom must have come in and tried to wake me up. My wide-open blinds—which were letting in an obscene amount of summer sun—let me know that she’d tried more than once. And that little white pill and glass of water on my nightstand? Well those only pissed me off. I sat up and squinted at the assorted bullshit on the table until I spotted my pack of Camel Lights. Swinging my spindly legs over the edge of the mattress, I reached past the food and water, opting for poison instead. I lit a cigarette and waited for that comforting, calming first inhalation to do its thing, but even smoking had become joyless. Just like everything else, I was going through the motions. Hand to mouth. Inhale. Exhale. Repeat. I ashed my cigarette in an empty Altoids tin on the nightstand and stared at the pill my mother had left for me—the tiny white hope that had turned out to be just another disappointment. I picked it up and inspected it. If it hadn't had the word PROZAC stamped on the side of it I would have assumed they’d just been giving me Tic Tacs. That shit did nothing. Nothing but mute the vibrant colors of my world to a dirty, dull gray. Instead of my feelings being a violent riot of bitter, angry crimsons, churning, crashing ceruleans, and blinking, cautionary yellows, my inner world was now as gray as the cloud of smoke that hung four feet above the floor and three feet below the ceiling in my bedroom. As gray as my skin, where it draped between my ribs and puddled in the hollows of my cheeks and eye sockets. As gray as the fading knight tattoo on the inside of my wedding ring finger. I threw the glorified breath mint across the room and listened to the plink, plink, plink sound it made as it bounced off the wall, onto my “desk”—which was just two filing cabinets and an old door that my mom had scrounged up at Goodwill and spray painted black—and landed in a heap of shiny army-green nylon on the floor. My chest felt as if someone had come up behind me and yanked the laces on an invisible corset. Tears stabbed at the corners of my eyes as images began flashing, unbidden, behind them. Images of a skinhead standing behind me at my locker, sliding an army-green flight jacket up my arms and over my shoulders to warm my perma-chilled skin. Images of his smile when he turned me around to admire the fit. I’d never seen him smile before. Not like that. Making him do it again soon became my reason for getting out of bed every morning. Now what reason did I have? Knight was gone. All I had left was his stupid fucking jacket.
(subject to change)
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About the Author
BB Easton lives in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia with her long-suffering husband, Ken, and two adorable children. She recently quit her job as a school psychologist to write stories about her punk rock past and deviant sexual history full-time. Ken is suuuper excited about it.
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Meet the Author:
Charlene Sands is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and historical romance. She has been honored with the National Readers Choice Award, the Booksellers Best Award, The Cataromance Reviewers Choice Award and Romantic Times Magazine's Best Harlequin Desire Award of 2014. She is an active member of Romance Writers of America. When not writing, she spends time with her four "princesses", enjoys sunny Pacific beaches and yummy chocolate mocha cappuccinos! Sign up for her newsletter for fun and exclusive prizes at www.charlenesands.com and on FB and Twitter!
About the Book:
There hasn't been a woman who's held Colby Ryan's heart for long, not since his teenage love went awry twelve years ago. Now, all of a sudden, Dakota Jennings, his longtime family friend and trusted wrangler on the Circle R ranch, is catching his eye. For Dakota’s sake, Colby won't ever give in to the temptation she poses.
Dakota has been secretly in love with Colby since the age of ten, but his sense of honor and the Texas code he lives by won’t allow her permanence in his heart. Up until this point, he’d never hinted at romance between them and yet, falling out of love with him just plain isn’t working.
Colby has always protected Dakota, and he isn’t about to stop now. If he gives in to his desire, she stands to lose far too much. Colby doesn’t deserve her love, he's already ruined one life, but the binds that tie them are strong. Can Dakota be the woman to redeem his broken soul?
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As soon as Dakota spotted Colby Ryan waiting for her at the airport terminal, her heartbeats thumped harder than a sledgehammer to concrete. A dark Stetson and snakeskin boots along with a ruggedly chiseled face and a skyscraper frame shouted cowboy from every single solid inch of him. “Cole, you really didn’t have to pick me up today. I could’ve gotten a ride home.”
Geesh, she sure had gotten darn good at lying to Cole ever since she’d started working at the Circle R Ranch. Fact was, she was glad to see him and she wished to high heaven she wasn’t. She’d been gone two weeks, not enough time to fall out of love with him, but surely enough to put some distance to her one-sided infatuation with her boss.
“Just say thank you, Day, and let it go at that.”
He grinned and that sexy dimple came out of hiding near the right corner of his mouth. The dimple she’d fantasized kissing a thousand times.
He’d never say he’d missed her. That would be too much to ask and she really wasn’t expecting it anyway. But the fact that he’d picked her up from the airport meant something, even though her time away from the Circle R, her time away from Cole, had given her a new perspective on the way she would run her life from now on. She wasn’t going to hope any longer or hang on his every word. Years of pining, ever since she was a ten-year-old smitten kid, was more than enough.
The fat lady had sung loud and clear.
Dakota Jennings wasn’t a quitter. That’s what Cole told her he liked best about her a dozen times, but this time she was done. Over. Finished. She’d quit him as a way of self-preservation although she wasn’t quite ready to quit her job on the ranch.
“How’s your mom doing?” Cole asked, taking her luggage out of her hand and leading her to his shiny super-charged special edition Lincoln Navigator.
“She’s doing pretty well considering how active she likes to be. Her ankle is healing up nicely and your mom is there hovering over her BFF, like always.”
“Mom likes to hover. It’s what she does best.”
“You hated it, when she hovered over you.”
“Not denying that.” He stashed her luggage in the back end of his SUV and then opened the passenger door for her. “Now she’s got June to focus on.”
“And Mom’s got Alice to complain to about…” She climbed in and buckled up.
He did the same and started the engine. “About?”
“Nothing, never mind.”
“Tell me, Day.” His hot smoky eyes pinned her down.
“Men, okay? My mom’s been thinking about dating.”
“Good for her,” Cole said, pulling out of the airport parking lot. “It’s about time June Jennings got back out there.”
“Really? You think it’s a good idea?”
“I do. There’s bound to be some nice gentlemen in their retirement community. It’s been what, fifteen years since your father passed?”
“Yeah, fifteen years. Sometimes it feels like yesterday and other times it seems like a lifetime ago. It’s weird though, thinking of my mom having a boyfriend.”
“Doesn’t have to be weird,” Cole said, suddenly an expert on dating. “She should try it and see how it goes. She doesn’t need to be getting serious or anything, but she’s deserving of some fun. With a man,” he added, his eyebrows doing a wicked dance on his forehead.
“Ew, Cole!” She crushed her arms around her middle and fell back against the seat. “I hate the image popping into my head right now.”
“Yeah, mine too. Strike that.”
“It’s stricken. At least our moms have bingo and movie night together.”
“Real Arizona excitement.” Cole laughed.
She smiled, despite the fact that Cole was as unattainable now as he’d always been. But, she couldn’t help smiling with him once in a while. Especially when they were talking about their moms. The two women had been best friends since forever, growing up in Hope Wells and marrying good men who both died before their time. Their mothers’ move to Arizona a few years back was a way for them to start fresh in a new environment. It had been an experiment at first, but both of the ladies decided they liked the change of pace. And it wasn’t as if they were too far away for a quick visit home or anything.
“Maybe now Mom’s ready for something more.”
“Like I said, good for her.”
As Cole drove on, the highway became residential streets and their conversation came to an end. Once her street came into view, she voiced her innermost thoughts. “Maybe, I’ll give it a try too.”
“Give what a try?” Cole asked, matter-of-factly, without giving her so much as a glance.
“Dating?” His voice hitched an octave higher.
Wasn’t that what they were just talking about? Sometimes, Colby Ryan was as thick as a sycamore tree. “Yeah, that’s what I said.”
“What the heck does that mean?” Her mind went to a thousand different places. Didn’t he think she could date? She wasn’t feminine enough? Her tomboy ways turned men off? It was clear he wasn’t attracted to her, but that wasn’t true of all men. Why, just a month ago she’d been propositioned by the owner of Hope Wells’ premiere ice cream shop, Giggles and Cream. Of course, Ed Nelson had been married and divorced twice by the age of thirty, not exactly prime boyfriend material, and the thought of going out with him gave her hives. But he wasn’t the only one to ask her out. There’d been a few others that she’d tactfully declined.
“You have no time as it is, Day. With you working that second job and all. I told you, if you need more than I’m paying you, I’ll give you a raise.”
Small relief brought her raised shoulders down. At least he hadn’t voiced what she’d feared most—that he thought her undesirable as a woman. “I’ll take that raise, Cole. Because I’ve earned it. But I’m not quitting my job at Barely There. It’s a fun place and the women I work with are nice.” And mostly, it gave her a little time away from him. She was determined to get a grip on her life. The change was good for her. “And some of that frilly lingerie Jillian designs, well it’s enough to crank any man’s—”
“We’re here,” Cole interrupted, jerking the car to a stop in front of her small house. He swiveled his head around to pummel her with his gaze. What was wrong with him? She hadn’t asked for a raise in the three years since she’d worked for him. He’d always been fair and generous with her. Was that it? Maybe all this talk about money didn’t set right with him?
“Thanks for the ride, boss.”
Cole’s mouth twisted. He hated when she called him that. To his credit, he wasn’t one to pull rank on his employees. He was simply Cole to everyone. Not Mr. Ryan. Not boss. But yanking his chain every so often gave her a bit of pleasure, because, well, it was all the pleasure she’d ever gotten out of her relationship with him.
She stared at the paneled front door of her two-bedroom house. It was good to be home. Even though the place had shortcomings, she still liked living here for the time being. Her real dream was to raise horses on her own land. That was her goal in life: to be her own boss. But she’d been hindered by her love for Cole. Being his horse wrangler and fill-in foreman when he needed her to be ensured she’d see him almost every day. How pathetic was that? Well, that wasn’t happening anymore. No, sir.
They’d been forced friends growing up, having no choice but to spend a lot of time together as children, due to their mothers’ close bond. But Cole was older by five years, making him seem like her babysitter at times. That five-year difference had given him the upper hand in all things.
He gave a nod. “Welcome, Dakota.”
So formal and his way of getting back at her.
“I’ll get your bags.” He hit the button to release the trunk.
“I can get them,” she said, climbing out of the SUV and winding around to the back end. She pulled the big suitcase out with ease and slung the big tote bag over her shoulder. She worked hard on the ranch and lifted weights by way of hay bales and lumber, to keep her muscles toned. It paid off with firm limbs and a sturdy constitution, but a big ole frown on Cole’s face told her he didn’t approve. He was born a gentleman, and sometimes she wished he’d just enter into the twenty-first century and loosen up a bit.
“Well, look who decided to come home.” Brett Collier’s voice boomed from across the yard. Her neighbor lived next door in a big four-bedroom he was remodeling in between carpentry jobs.
“Hey, yourself. Howdy, Cole,” he said as he approached.
“Brett.” The two men shook hands.
“How was your trip?” he asked her pleasantly. Brett had charm to spare, was twenty-six—her own age—and had all the single girls in town drooling at his good looks and muscular physique. Brett wearing his tool belt was a sight to behold.
“Good. My mom’s healing, but she hates the crutches.”
“I can relate,” Brett said. “I broke my leg once as a kid and it wasn’t fun. Well, don’t want to interrupt, but I saw you out here and wanted to give you back your key.”
“You have her key?” Cole asked, a hint of sharpness to his tone.
“Yeah, you know, to water plants and delete her programs on the DVR,” Brett said. “She’s quite the fan of romantic movies.”
“You are?” Cole pinned her with a look.
She cringed. There were some things Colby Ryan didn’t know about her.
She shrugged. “I forgot to stop them from recording, is all. And they’re comedies—you know something to make me smile after a long day.”
“Nearly blew up all your recording space,” Brett added.
“Thanks, Brett, you saved me,” she said and pursed her lips tight. He’d just given up something to Cole she’d rather him not know about her—under her tomboy demeanor lived a hopeless romantic. “I appreciate you helping out.”
“No problem. Here, let me take those,” he said, and before she could protest, Brett had her bags in his hands. She didn’t dare glance at Cole. She could only imagine his head exploding. “I’ll bring them inside for you. Oh and if you’re not too tired, I have an idea to expand your small pantry space with very little work involved.”
“Really? Sure, that’d be great. I’ll be in, in a second.”
“See you tomorrow night, Cole,” Brett said.
She turned to face Cole and just as she suspected, he was a sour-puss. “Tomorrow?”
“Poker game,” he grumbled.
She nodded. “I guess, I’ll see you tomorrow too, bright and shiny. Thanks again for the ride.”
Cole ran a hand down his face and didn’t say a single word. He climbed into his SUV, revved the engine and pulled away, leaving her standing on the porch next to Brett Collier.
Author: KC Lynn
Release Date: August 18, 2017
TBR Link: Goodreads
Cockloft: A firefighter term used as a structural space above ceiling and below rafters, often connecting adjacent occupancies and permitting fire to spread laterally, often unseen.
Gabriel Martinez is the most arrogant and infuriating man I’ve ever met. He has a knee-weakening smirk that makes me want to kiss—no—slap it off his rude, sexy face. Judging by his ego, you’d think the hose in his pants is as big as the one on his fire truck. Not that I know anything about that nor do I want to. Nope, not at all. He’s already been forgotten like last season’s Michael Kors.
CeCe Kensington is as pretentious and spoiled as they come. The ridiculous purses she shoulders around are as big as her attitude. And don’t get me started on her mile-long legs or full, glossy lips that are meant to be wrapped around a guy’s… If she only knew the dirty things I think about doing to that sassy mouth of hers, she'd be hightailing it back to her side of town.
When the beautiful boutique owner and sexy firefighter meet in the most unlikely situation, their two worlds collide, creating an explosion of misperceptions and combustible heat, trapping them in a fire they never saw coming.
About the Author
K.C. Lynn is a small town girl living in Western Canada. She married her high school sweetheart and they have four amazing children: two lovely girls and a set of handsome twin boys. It was her love for romance books that gave K.C. the courage to sit down and write her own novel. When she is not in her writing cave, pounding out new characters and stories, she can be found living between the pages of a book, meeting new tattooed, hot alpha males with very big…Hearts.
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