Friends-to-lovers is a favorite theme of mine and is on fun and flirty display with this first installment in the Sandy Heights series. Keep reading to get a tempting glimpse of Just Pretend by J.P. Nicholas, with its heroine who gets hands-on experience for her romance writing with her long-time friend who unexpectedly turns their fake dating relationship into something more. Be tempted by this drool-worthy book cover too, then count down the days until this book releases on June 8th!
When yet another publisher rejects Hannah’s most recent book due to poor love scenes, she concocts a fail-proof plan to increase her creativity… spine-tingling, no strings attached sex. How can she write about love and lust if she's never really felt it? As the only man in her life she truly trusts, Logan is the perfect one to help her find this new side of herself—and stand in as her pretend boyfriend at an upcoming reunion.
For Logan, a Broadway actor by trade and passion, Hannah’s proposal is both outrageous and intriguing—especially since he's fought for nineteen years of friendship to avoid thinking of her in a physical way. Against all reason, Logan takes the bait and agrees… then ups the ante by turning their pretend relationship into a pretend engagement in front of her entire family.
Now, they just have to navigate their new situation while playing house… and somehow remember this is all Just Pretend…
I swipe the green circle to the right and bring the phone up to my ear.
"God, I've never been so happy to hear that song.”
He sighs in disgust. "Don't tell me you still have The Golden Girls song set as my ringtone.”
I smile just at the sound of his voice. "Yep. And I'm never gonna change it.”
He laughs. "You're a weird one.”
I hold my phone with my cheek and shoulder as I pull my hair up into a ponytail. "And you're stuck with me.”
"I wouldn't have it any other way.”
It could just be me or my shitty cell connection, but Logan's voice sounds much deeper than usual. I reach under my bed and retrieve my basket of nail polishes. "What color?”
He ponders my question for a minute before he answers. "Red. Wait. Toes, or fingers?”
I laugh. He always knows just what to say to split my sides. "Toes.”
"Toes? What's the special occasion?" The shock in his voice amuses me.
"Why does it have to be a special occasion?”
"Because I know you, Han. The last time you painted your toes was homecoming. And then the time before that it was your birthday." I see his point.
"Fine, you got me. I'm leaving for Daytona Beach in a couple of hours. The girls and I are having a beach day to kick off Spring Break." He lets out a long oh before he speaks.
"In that case, better make it blue.”
He peaks my interest, causing me to furrow my brow. "How come?”
"Blue is less noticeable. And since I'm not there to kick whichever sorry ass tries to hit on you, blue it is.”
I contemplate whether or not to fight him on his protective stance. Oh, what the hell. It'll be fun. "So, purple it is.”
"Don't you fucking dare paint them purple," he growls, catching me off guard. The assertiveness in his tone causes my legs to tingle. I ignore it.
"Too late. The first coat is on already.”
His voice remains stern as he reprimands me. "Don't make me fly my ass down there and rip every speck of purple off your nails.”
"You wouldn't," I tease, trying my best not to laugh at his overreaction.
He clears his throat. "Don't test me."
FIND AT GOODREADS here.
J.P. Nicholas has the great misfortune to be A Male Romance Writer. Turns out, men are also hopeless romantics, given half the chance, and Nicholas’ fascination with love began long before he could write. His parents—high school sweethearts who are still mad for each other—left him enamored with the idea of true love, and its ability to transform and redeem even the most jaded soul. Nicholas lives to capture this magic, lust, and passion on the page; his characters known for their sizzling chemistry and chest-squeezing plot lines.
When J.P. Nicholas isn’t tapping away at his laptop, he can be found in his home state of Florida, binge-watching This Is Us with his girlfriend, or devouring Italian food with his family. His latest novel, Just Pretend, is a friends-to-lovers drama and the first in his new Sandy Heights series, to be released in June.