COVER REVEAL: Floured by Lane Martin
Emily Barnes likes things measured and timed, just like any baker. When she loses the apartment that she needs to run her home-based muffin business, she's faced with a choice: couch surfing at her very loud best friends' separated by thin walls or house sitting an otherwise empty Upper East Side luxury apartment overlooking Central Park. Obviously it’s a no-brainer for this smart cookie.
Declan Hayes is used to people asking things of him and saying no. However, for Maggie, his parent’s cook and housekeeper, he would do just about anything, including going over to his parent’s apartment to check on her pseudo niece who is staying there. His plan was to get in and get out, but the second he saw her, something changed. Something about her sparked the normally cold and dismal place to life; she made it warm and inviting. He finally understood the phrase “there’s no place like home.”
Can Emily and Declan trust the timing of their lives or adjust the lens from which they see them?
Hope, faith, trust and...love?
Will these things be enough for Emily and Declan to get the one thing they both never thought they needed in life?
It’s a good thing they are “Floured” because life is about to get sticky.
With a sigh, I leaned against the door jam and looked around the now empty apartment. Natalie sniffled through the phone. Leave it to my bleeding heart best friend to be crying when I was the one being evicted. “Are you sure that you don’t want me to come over?”
“I’m fine, Nat. Gabe just took off, and I’m about to leave too.” Thankfully Gabe is able to store the few things I own at his family’s business until I find a new place to live. I don't feel that bad about it because I do employ them to make all my deliveries for my company. I don’t know why I’m not more upset; maybe it’s because I knew it was the risk I was taking when I made my decision. Helping my sister was the right thing to do, even if it had led to the bright-green notice being attached to my apartment door. I can say for sure that I never want to experience this again. The pitiful looks I got from the neighbors wouldn’t be playing on my highlight reel any time soon. “This place was a shit hole. I’ll find something better.”
“Are you sure you don’t want to just stay with us?” I’d already had this conversation with both Nat and Gabe, and I didn’t want to have it again. I loved my best friends, but there was no way I was going to stay with them. Natalie was my roommate starting freshman year, and we quickly became inseparable. To others, we were the odd couple, but somehow we just clicked. I was the one from California, but she was the one with the blue eyes, blonde hair, and bohemian vibe. Natalie was fun loving, always the life of the party—not that I wasn’t fun, I was just more reserved, a little slow to warm up. I met Gabe in Social Foundations I, and when he asked me out, I couldn’t resist his boy-next-door charm and dimples. We didn’t make a love connection, but I knew instantly that he was perfect for Natalie. Gabe was as easygoing as Nat.
“I’m sure, Bridezilla.” She wasn’t really that bad, but no way in hell would I stay with Gabe and her when they had a lot of plans to finalize for the wedding. Besides, the walls in their apartment were paper-thin; I’m kind of surprised they hadn’t been evicted. I’m still not sure why they ever thought getting married on New Year’s Eve in New York was a good idea, but it’s what they wanted, and as maid of honor it was my job to go with the flow and keep the bride happy.
“Watch it, or I’ll switch your dress to the eighties throwback with the puffy sleeves, and you’ll be styling crimped hair and blue eye shadow.” I knew she was kidding. We both fell in love with my gray strapless dress with the perfect amount of bling the minute we saw it, just like we did hers. Yes, she had definitely experienced “that moment”, and we all cried right along with her.
“It’s your wedding.” I knew images of her wedding album were running through her head when we both began to laugh.
“You’re such a bitch.”
“But you love me anyway.” I truly did.
“You know I do. If you change your mind, you know where to find us.”
“Yeah, I do. Thanks, Nat, and thank Gabe properly for me when he gets home.” The little nymph picked up instantly on what I was implying, and I could tell that she liked the idea.
“Oh, you so know I will. He just walked in. I’ll talk to you later. Au revoir.” Nat was practicing her French for the Parisian honeymoon they were taking. I hit end on the phone and took one final look around. Things couldn’t get much worse, so that meant they had to get better. Right?
I never thought that I would write a novel, although my English teacher my freshman year in college told me that he would hunt me down if I wasn’t published by the time I was thirty. Well, thirty came and went. I was busy being a wife and working mother of two, and nobody came looking for me.
I doubt my sister thought she was about to change my life forever when she got me a book of “mommy porn” for my birthday in 2012, but that’s exactly what she did. After reading the first book in the trilogy, I rushed out and got the other two books. I became obsessed and read the series several times before learning about Fanfiction. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who couldn’t get enough. The idea fascinated me and I thought, “I can do that.” I was a nervous wreck when I posted my first story, a one shot about my new favorite couple. One story lead to another and then another. My readers encouraged me to write something that was all mine, so that‘s what I did. Thank you to everyone who told me that I could do it. It wouldn’t have been possible without you.
I love reading, writing, traveling, and spending time with my family. Thank you for going on this journey with me.
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