Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Book Blast for Cross Drop by Elizabeth Hartey (GIVEAWAY)


Reunited young lovers and second chances drive this story set in the world of sports that will put readers through the emotional wringer alongside its characters.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Cross Drop by Elizabeth Hartey, with its emotionally intense romance and unexpected truths being revealed, then learn even more about this book by visiting the other sites hosting this tour.  In honor of this second installment in the On the Edge series make sure to fill out the form below for the chance to win a $20 bookstore GC too!

Nikki
I’m not a saint. Never claimed to be. I’ve played the game and scored my fair share—both on and off the field. This is why I should have known better than to fall for a hockey player. But I did. I fell fast and hard.
Now I’m left with the painful consequences, reminded every day of how reckless I had been by giving him my heart so easily—so willingly. Dalt broke me in the cruelest of ways, and because of him I’ll never be able to love again.
Dalt
Nikki changed me. She made me want to be a better man. My days playing off the field were over because she owned every little piece of my heart…until she left, leaving behind a gnawing ache where my heart used to be.
Now she’s back, and it’s painfully clear she hates me, ignoring me, pretending like I’m nobody to her. But that’s just too damn bad. I want answers. I want a goddamn explanation. And most of all…I want her.

EXCERPT:

Dalt is one of those aberrations of humanity. He’s flawlessly gorgeous: dark, tousled, slightly wavy hair, classic chiseled jaw, perfect straight nose, soul piercing blue eyes, plump, very gifted lips, if you know what I mean. Everything about him screams sex. His black button-down shirt and dress pants accentuate every muscled line of his perfect Michael Stokes model body.
And he knows just how to use all his perfection to get what he wants. He’s not accustomed to hearing the word no, at least not from any oxygen breathing female. He’s using his locked and loaded molten gaze at this very moment, turning my bones to Jell-O and annihilating any wise decision-making on my part.
I want him so bad it hurts. It’s like staring at the shiny, poison apple, knowing if you taste it you’re doomed, but unable to resist its shimmering perfection. There’s more than just my heart to consider now, though. We have a lifelong connection he’s not aware of. Nevertheless, I have to disconnect my feelings for him. The man I fell in love with is not the man he turned out to be. He made his choice. He doesn’t get to have his cake and eat it too, even with those gifted lips.


BUY LINKS:  AMAZON  |  BN

BUY THE PREVIOUS BOOK IN THE ON THE EDGE SERIES, CROSS STROKE, THROUGH THESE LINKS:  AMAZON  |  BN

AUTHOR INFO:

As a lover of the northeast US, Elizabeth moved with her husband to the Poconos several years ago to open a Chiropractic Clinic. Four children and a menagerie of animals later, she has finally found time to fulfill her lifelong dream of writing novels. The wild ride of writing books is one of the most difficult things she’s ever done in her life. But the opportunity to get her stories out of her head and down on paper and send them out into the world is also one of the most wonderful things she’s ever done. A dreamer at heart, romance is the genre she spends most of her time writing and reading into the wee hours of the morning. And having readers fall in love with her characters as much as she does is almost as exciting as giving birth (just not as painful!) When not juggling work responsibilities and writing, she enjoys spending time with her family, hiking the beautiful hills and woods around her home, swimming, knitting, watching old classic movies and travelling.


**********GIVEAWAY**********

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Book Release Blitz for Shattered Fears by Anna Edwards


Fans of paranormal romances will find themselves captivated by this tale of secrets and second chances as a woman longing to live life on her own terms reunites with the man who she gave everything to.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Shattered Fears by Anna Edwards, then add this fourth installment in the Glacial Blood series to your bookshelf!


Isobel Ross has led a sheltered life, because her father is a Senator for Montana, and she has to act a certain way. She’s known love only to have her heart shattered when the man she gave her virginity to disappeared. Chance brings them back together. Can she find it in her heart to forgive him?
Zain Thornton is the honey-loving bear of the Glacial Blood pack. Is his obsession a mask for the guilt and fear he hides? He’s a shifter. The woman he loves can never be with one of them. It’s too risky for all their futures. Can he find a way to live the life he wants when everything around him falls apart?




BUY LINKS:  AMAZON (US)  |  AMAZON (UK)  |  AMAZON (CA)  |  AMAZON (AU)  |  iBOOKS  |  KOBO  |  BN


AUTHOR INFO:

Anna hails from the rural countryside near London. She previously worked as an accountant, and while she still does a bit of accountancy on occasion, the majority of her time is now spent writing and looking after her family.
An avid reader herself, Anna turned to writing to combat depression and anxiety after her diagnosis in 2015. She loves travel, hunky heroes with dirty mouths, demure but spunky heroines, and dramatic suspense. You will find all four woven into each of her magical stories.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Book Tour for Silverblade by Bella Jeanisse (Review & GIVEAWAY)


From the very first page readers will be captivated by this gritty and emotionally intense rockstar romance that will keep you on the edge of your seat in its dealings with addiction, death, and starting over.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Silverblade by Bella Jeanisse, along with my impressions of it, then add it to your bookshelf.  In honor of this first installment in the Silverblade series make sure to fill out the form below for the chance to win a $15 Amazon GC, a $10 Amazon GC, and 3 digital copies of this book along with swag too!

Are you ready to dive into a new series?
Before there can be a Rockstar Romance, there has to be a band...
Shane Martin, lead vocalist of Silverblade, has given up on keeping his band together. He doesn’t know how to go on after the loss of their bassist and his best friend, Troy. When Troy’s widow insists he start the search, he does. No one was good enough until he found Zack.
Zack Bryant plays bass, but his band is going nowhere. He thinks he has no chance to have a better life. That is until Shane walks into the bar where he is playing one night. He finally has a way to show the world what he can do.
Will Zack blend with the rest of the band? Can they get ready in time to join the Reign of Fire tour? Little do they know, this is only the beginning.

BUY LINKS:  AMAZON (US)  |  AMAZON (UK)  |  AMAZON (CA)  |  AMAZON (AU)  |  KOBO  |  iBOOKS  |  SMASHWORDS  |  BN


MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:

As a reader obsessed with rockstar romances I found myself captivated by this book from the very first page to the last with its gritty realism, angst, and complex romance pushing me to keep turning the pages.  In a tale of loss, addiction, and second chances readers will find themselves put through the emotional wringer alongside the men of Silverblade and coming out the other side feeling immensely satisfied and ready for the next installment in this series.

Shane Martin’s life has been a tough one full of unexpected twists and turns. From becoming a teen dad to gaining musical notoriety to losing himself amidst the fame, Shane’s now left feeling adrift.  As a rockstar he should’ve been living a life of ease, but the ravages of addiction hurt his band and resulted in the death of his bandmate and best friend.  Just when he’s ready to call it quits though he stumbles across a musician that reawakens his musical drive and together they bring Silverblade back from the ashes.  It’s not an easy journey though as he tries to solidify a relationship with his daughter who finds herself attracted to the new bassist.  Being a father soon wars with being a bandmate and adds even more angst into Silverblade’s resurrection.  Shane’s a larger than life hero, far from perfect, but immensely appealing for all his imperfections. While we’ve seen glimpses of him throughout this author’s other works, this is the story where everything comes full circle for him on many levels and I was captivated by his evolution.  He’s been bruised throughout his life but never broken and I was rooting for him to succeed every step of the way, to find his own HEA.

Zack Bryant’s a musical genius with a band just biding time until he’s discovered and becomes the latest addition to Silverblade.  Zack’s young and eager and brings a breath of fresh air to a band ravaged by the pain and loss of addiction. He’s got issues of his own though, surprises that come out as this story progresses, that kept me fully invested in his bonding with the band.  His relationship with Shane’s daughter is a forbidden one, one that could harm his place in the band but it’s too powerful for him to ignore in its eroticism and sweetness.  I enjoyed his complex relationship with Shane as it evolved from mentor, to bandmate, to father of the young lady he’s coming to care for.  The dichotomy kept me glued to the pages and on edge as I continued to root the band on in their journey back to the top of the charts.

This is an exhilarating read that didn’t pull any punches when it came to its depiction of the rockstar lifestyle.  There’s groupies and the energy of the stage that fully immersed me in its storytelling while pulling at my heartstrings for all that the band’s gone through and all they hope to accomplish now that they’re clean.  On a whole this is an immensely satisfying series starter that lays some heavy groundwork, giving us some answers while tempting us with more.  By the turn of the final page I’m left cheering yet breathlessly anticipating more from a band empowered by their painful past and ready to make the most of their second chance.

My rating for this is an A.

*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.

AUTHOR INFO:

Bella Jeanisse lives for rock music. Addicted to concerts, Avenged Sevenfold, fictional rockers, and blasting music in the car, she can’t get enough. After her father turned her on to Queen, there was no going back. Of course, it didn’t stop there. Playing guitar became a pastime, which didn’t turn into a career… until she started to pen her fantasies and publish them.
Originally from Brooklyn, New York City, she grew up with access to clubs like L’Amour and CBGBs, hung out in Greenwich Village, as well as had plenty of friends in bands. No wonder rockers stayed on her mind. Bringing her ideas to life was a long time coming.
She is now living near Tampa, FL with 3 kids and 2 grandkids, as a single mom. Her family supports her writing even when it seems to take up more time than they feel is necessary. Can’t stop the muse, ya know!
Besides erotic rock star romances, Bella also writes about wild bikers, hot college men and more.

**********GIVEAWAY**********

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Friday, July 27, 2018

Book Tour for Born to Be Wilde by Eloisa James (GIVEAWAY)


Readers will be charmed by this twist on Pygmalion as a rich bachelor helps a desperate woman find a husband and ends up falling for her in the process.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Born to Be Wilde by Eloisa James, then count down the days until this Regency romance releases on July 31st.  In honor of this third installment in The Wildes of Lindow Castle Series visit the link below for US readers to have the chance to win a hardcover set of the books in this series too!

The richest bachelor in England plays matchmaker…for an heiress he wants for himself!
For beautiful, witty Lavinia Gray, there’s only one thing worse than having to ask the appalling Parth Sterling to marry her: being turned down by him.
Now the richest bachelor in England, Parth is not about to marry a woman as reckless and fashion-obsessed as Lavinia; he’s chosen a far more suitable bride.
But when he learns of Lavinia's desperate circumstances, he offers to find her a husband. Even better, he’ll find her a prince.
As usual, there’s no problem Parth can’t fix. But the more time he spends with the beguiling Lavinia, the more he finds himself wondering...
Why does the woman who’s completely wrong feel so right in his arms?

EXCERPT:

Gentlemen didn’t kiss like this. And yet he couldn’t stop...
She tasted better than anything—anyone. She tasted like honey and spice, like brandy ans excitement.
Dimly, he was aware that blood was thundering through his veins . . . from a mere kiss.
The reality of it shocked him back into sense and he pulled back, ending the kiss. Lavinia opened her eyes. Annoyed. She was annoyed. Years of reading her face told him exactly how she was feeling.
“Kiss me again, Mr. Sterling,” she ordered, her voice husky. For a moment he just felt a flare of anger at that formal address, but she tugged at his hair.
He dove back into the kiss as if it had never ended.


PRE-ORDER LINKS:  AMAZON  |  AVON BOOKS  |  BN  |  iBOOKS  |  GOOGLE PLAY


AUTHOR INFO:

ELOISA JAMES is a New York Times best-selling author and professor of English literature who lives with her family in New York, but can sometimes be found in Paris or Italy. She is the mother of two and, in a particularly delicious irony for a romance writer, is married to a genuine Italian knight.



**********GIVEAWAY**********


ENTER here FOR THE CHANCE TO WIN A HARDCOVER COLLECTION OF THE BOOKS IN THE WILDES OF LINDOW CASTLE SERIES. GIVEAWAY IS OPEN TO US READERS ONLY.  ENDS ON 8/10 AT 11:59 PM EST.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Book Tour for Rivers by S.L. Scott (REVIEW)

Former lovers find their way back to each other in this heartfelt talk of family and second chances set amidst the rock star world.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Rivers by S.L. Scott, along with my impressions of it, then add this third installment in the Crow Brothers series to your bookshelf!

From New York Times Bestselling Author, S.L. Scott, comes a hot new rock star romance that will sweep you off your feet and leave you with a smile.
This Standalone Second Chance Rock Star Romance by New York Times Bestselling Author, S.L. Scott, will have you falling in love with Rivers Crow while introducing you to his Sexy as Sin brothers and band mates—Jet, Tulsa, and Ridge.
Rivers Crow has everything he could ever need—a rock star life, more money than the devil himself, and worldwide fame. Except he’s still missing the one thing he wants—the girl he left behind.
Stella Fellowes has a life she doesn’t want—an unfulfilling job, debt without a ceiling, and lonely nights she spends pretending not to miss the one thing she needs—the boy who broke her heart.
Five years later, the guitarist she once loved is back with a hit record, millions of fans, and that look in his eye that still makes her weak in the knees. Only she’s not the same girl he once knew.
When these two star-crossed lovers come together, time starts to heal old wounds. Although she’s compelled to look past his sins, will he be able to look past hers?

EXCERPT:

I’m a skilled guitarist. I know how to make her come using all I’ve learned and playing her like an instrument.
I’m just not sure if I’m ready to let her have a release. I’m thinking of keeping her on the brink so we can come together. Stella grinds against my hand, seeking relief. I pull out and replace my finger with my cock one big inch at a time.
A gasp and then a harsh intake of air draws my attention to her pretty face. “How do I feel, baby?”
“So good. So much.” Her eyes open lazily as she takes a slow deep breath and looks into my eyes as I hover over her. Her hands drift from my shoulders to my jaw. “I want all of you, Rivers. Your body, your love, this look in your eyes forever. Kiss me.” Fuck. Yes. Forever.
I push in a little more, causing her eyes to close with the motion. My lips touch hers, and she whispers, “I was always here waiting for you. I was always yours . . .” I push in farther, her words driving me to take more. “To love.” Further, the feel of her engulfing me begins to cloud my thoughts. “To fuck.”
Fuck. I thrust all the way, as deep as I can go. Her head goes back, her words cries of desire. I kiss the underside of her chin and fuck.
Fuck.
Love.
Fuck.
Not gentle.
Driving home everything I’ve wanted to tell her since the day we broke up. “I love you.” I fuck her selfishly. I fuck her to satisfy my own needs. I fuck her into an apology. “I’m sorry if I hurt you.”
“Don’t say sorry,” she manages between panting breaths. “You feel so good.”
I rest on my forearms and take her wrists in hand before pulling them above her head. Our palms press together. Our fingers entwine. Her body is stretched beneath me when I kiss her lips, showing her how much I care about her.
“I meant I’m sorry for what I’m about to do to you.”


FIND AT GOODREADS here.

BUY AT AMAZON here.

MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:

Love of family becomes the driving force in this second chance romance as former lovers find themselves trying to reconnect in a tale full of emotional twists and turns.  It’s a heartbreaking journey of past pains being divulged to form a new connection that pulls at the heartstrings every step of the way in a romance that had me cheering by the turn of the final page.

Stella and Rivers were once inseperable with a love that was as vital as breathing to them, until his fame and her family obligation drove them apart. She was once full of life, willing to walk on the wild side with Rivers, until she sacrificed everything for her family’s name and was left a shadow of her former self.  Now she’s battling her own self-esteem, feeling unworthy of Rivers as he seems larger than life now.  Being around him again reawakens the strength he once brought out in her and she soon starts grabbing on to living with both hands, leading to a more mature and vital romance that fully immersed me in their outcome.  Stella’s a likable heroine, loyal to her family, willing to sacrifice everything for them.  I ached for all she’d been through since Rivers left but it ultimately made her stronger.  She was at a low point when we first met her but a weight was clearly being lifted off her as she and Rivers spent more and more time together.  Though their love was meant to be it was a rocky road of painful truths and self-acceptance that took place to get there and it kept me enthralled every step of the way.

Rivers knew the moment he met Stella that she was the one for him.  Fame, groupies, and the rock star lifestyle never altered that view and just led to one meaningless moment after another.  No longer willing to just settle, with his brothers finding their own happiness, he’s come home to claim Stella in a battle he’ll be fighting against their painful pasts.  Rivers is a delicious hero with a past that brought tears to my eyes and that he’s still working through.  He’s devoted to his family and loyal to his friends...and it’s that loyalty that drove a wedge between him and Stella years ago.  He’s back now though and is willing to do whatever it takes to claim her once again in a romance that put every card on the table in their hard-fought journey to HEA.

Even if you haven’t read the other Crow Brothers books you’ll still find yourself mesmerized by this romance.  With a hero who wears his heart on his sleeve and a heroine who’s sacrificed much for others in her life, this is a romance that pushes every emotional button.  It’s a book about undying love and the power of forgiveness between two people meant to be together.  With interactions both fun and flirty, as well as erotically-charged, theirs is a romance that put me through the emotional wringer while I cheered them on every step of the way. Alongside this compelling main couple was a cast of equally entertaining secondary characters.  Seeing the other Crow Brothers reminds readers of the importance of family to these three rock stars and with the charming Ridge along for the ride this story broadens the definition of family.  Stella’s sister Meadow was a delightful addition too and I loved her subtle matchmaking between Rivers and Stella.  On a whole this is an unforgettable romance that readers will be drawn to and that I highly recommend!

My rating for this is an A.

*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.


PREVIOUS BOOKS IN THE CROW BROTHERS SERIES:

SPARK (Book #1):  AMAZON (US)  |  GOODREADS

TULSA (Book #2):  AMAZON (US)  |  GOODREADS

RIDGE (Book #3): RELEASING IN SEPTEMBER 2018

AUTHOR INFO:

Living in the capital of Texas with her family, Scott loves traveling and avocados, beaches, and cooking with her kids. She's obsessed with epic romances and loves a good plot twist. Her favorite color is blue, but she likens it more toward the sky than the emotion. Her home is filled with the welcoming symbol of the pineapple and finds surfing a challenge though she likes to think she's a pro.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Book Release Blitz for Young Love by Alyson Santos


Romances involving older women/younger men are among my favorites which is why I’m thrilled by this new release of second chances and finding yourself.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Young Love by Alyson Santos, then add this emotionally intense romance to your bookshelf!

Sometimes you need to let yourself fall...
Recently divorced Sienna Porter has the life she’s supposed to. A house, career, even a hot young contractor working upstairs to distract her. At thirty-eight, she’s entitled to a little fun (according to her best friend, anyway).
Pain, though— it’s so clever in the way it infects hope and poisons happiness.
Jace Beckett should be flying high. Talented, driven, and disciplined, he’s far beyond his twenty-three years. He’s used to the game, the attention his looks and highly-trained body get from women. Doesn’t mean he likes to play.
Doesn’t mean his own secrets aren’t intent on tearing him down.
It’s just a fling. Sexy. Temporary. It’s not supposed to last. It’s not supposed to transform into love. It’s certainly not supposed to become the air you breathe and everything worth fighting for.


BUY LINKS:  AMAZON (US)  |  AMAZON (UNIVERSAL)


AUTHOR INFO:

I’m a writer, musician, and cat lover. I also have an alternative music obsession. Seriously, it’s a real problem.
I write what needs to come out, whether it’s pain, tears, or laughter. I write people and relationships, about the beauty and horror of what we do to ourselves and each other. I write Love. Vengeance. Compassion. Cruelty. Trust. Betrayal. Forgiveness. Darkness, and the incredible way humans destroy and heal each other.
I like to eradicate barriers, refusing to be confined by the laws of physics or limitations of reality. I will befriend a vast population of possibilities and introduce them in ways that might surprise you.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Book Spotlight on Second Time Around by Nancy Herkness (GIVEAWAY)

Readers will find themselves charmed by this tale of opposites attracting when a woman longing to do good in the world finds herself involved in a fake relationship with a rich man that soon becomes all too real.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Second Time Around by Nancy Herkness, then add it to your bookshelf.  In honor of this first installment in the Second Glances series make sure to fill out the form below for the chance to win a $25 Amazon GC along with a digital copy of this book too!


An Interview With the Main Characters Talking About Opposites Attracting...
Today it is a pleasure to introduce Will Chase and Kyra Dixon to readers! The hero and heroine are from Nancy Herkness’ newest release Second Time Around and the title of the story certainly is inspired by the characters’ story. The ‘first time around’ for this couple was in college when Will was dating Kyra’s roommate. This evil ex cheated on Will and while Kyra longed to comfort her secret crush, but she was firmly friendzoned.
Years later in an accidental meeting in NYC, Kyra and Will are reunited--only this time sparks fly with nothing to get in the way of igniting….except the fact that Will is a little (okay, a lot) out of Kyra’s social circle. This makes interacting with his family and friends a teeny bit awkward. But while Will may have money, he is also kind, funny, hardworking, and stubborn. Too stubborn in fact to let a little bit of status stand in the way of him and the woman he wants.
However, we have to ask: Just how different are these two characters really? Read on for a questionnaire where we find out if Will and Kyra are true opposites or if they are more alike than they realize.
Question #1: What can you tell us about your favorite childhood memory?
Kyra: My father worked at the Mack Truck factory so he was very wiry and muscular, even though he was short in stature. When I was a child, he would toss me up in the air and catch me. I’ll never forget feeling the strength of his hands wrapped around my waist as he boosted me up, the sense of exhilaration as I flew through the air, and the security of knowing with absolute certainty that his steely, powerful arms would be waiting for me when I came down.
Will: My parents’ house had a two story library with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves and ladders on rails to reach them. It seemed like a magic cave filled with treasure to me. Once I convinced them that I would treat the books and the room with respect, they allowed me free run of it. I spent many a happy hour deciding which book to read and then stretching out on the Oriental rug to read it. Sometimes I even walked in merely to smell the scent of books waiting to be read.
Question #2: When you were growing up what types of activities did you enjoy?
Kyra: I was a voracious reader, and loved going to the public library where the librarians would set aside books they thought I would like. However, my favorite time spent there was wandering among the shelves until a book called out to me. Ice skating and riding my bike got me outdoors when Mom decided I’d spent too much time inside reading. Mom liked to shop, so we went “malling”, as she called it. I enjoyed that because I always got a treat.
Will: Reading was my activity of choice. However, my sister would sometimes bother me until I came to help her with her beloved horses at the stables, and I got to like that, especially because it was away from our parents. Tennis wasn’t bad. I hated sailing, which my mother forced me into. Couldn’t wait to give that up. I did the usual sports in school: soccer, lacrosse, basketball, etc. Working up a good sweat was satisfying.
Question #3: When it was time for college, how did you decide to attend Brunell college?
Kyra: I couldn’t afford to go far from home, so I stuck to schools in Pennsylvania. Brunell was the best school that offered me a good financial aid package. It also had a terrific English lit department, which was my passion. I only wish I had been able to finish my degree there.
Will: Brunell was my first flash of rebellion. Pops went to Harvard; Mum went to Princeton. I refused to apply to either of those. I wanted to study the classics and a noted authority on Homer taught at Brunell.
Question #4: What was your favorite part about college?
Kyra: Playing quote wars with Will Chase! Well, pretty much anything that had to do with Will. This smart, rich, golden boy from Connecticut was so alien that he fascinated me. Okay, so I loved the classes, too. I was pretty drunk on the whole “learning for the sake of learning” concept. The campus is gorgeous as well. All those brick buildings with white trim and vast, rolling, green lawns.
Will: The classics professor who made me choose Brunell, Dr. Weiss, was a spectacular teacher and mentor. His classes made me think and stretch and grow. Sometimes he’d hold class in his home where he always served the most delicious, sugary doughnuts from the local convenience mart. Every now and then, I still buy a box of those for nostalgia’s sake.
Question #5: What’s your career? How did you choose it?
Kyra: I didn’t exactly choose my career, if you could call it that. I needed to pay off the debt from college and my parents’ health issues and heard that bartenders at high end clubs in New York City could make a lot of money. I knew a little bit about bartending—and cooking— from working at a local restaurant in my hometown, so I packed up and moved. I also cook for the kids at the Carver After-School Care Center, which I love. But I started there only because the job offered a free apartment.
Will: I’m the CEO of Ceres, a multinational chain of caf├ęs that I founded. I started the company because I didn’t want to join my father’s law firm, as he expected me to. Do you see a theme here? It was satisfying to battle the challenges of building a company, never knowing from day to day if it would survive or fail. Now that it’s grown so huge, I find myself restless.
Question #6: Do you have an active social life? What is a favorite date you have been on recently?
Kyra: Social life? I tend bar at night and cook for kids during the day. Who has time for a social life? I can’t remember the last time I went on a date.
Will: I’m the face of Ceres so I attend quite a few charity events, if you consider that a social life. I’m not sure I do. Between that and the hours I work, dating isn’t a priority. Not to mention, a broken engagement left a sour taste in my mouth when it comes to romance. My favorite recent charity event was held in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where I could wander through the classic Greek and Roman art exhibits without a crowd. That was an unexpected pleasure.
Question #7: What are your goals for the future? Where do you see yourself in a few years?
Kyra: My most urgent and immediate goal is to pay off my debt. Sometimes it feels like a boulder crushing me into the sidewalk. If I ever manage to do that, my aspiration is to finish my college degree in English lit and get a job as an editor at a publishing house. Hey, a girl has a right to her pipe dreams, doesn’t she?
Will: My goal is to figure out where the hell I see myself in a few years. Right now, my future looks like more of the same: long hours at work, too much business travel, attending events for PR purposes, and resisting my mother’s efforts to marry me off to one of her friends’ daughters. Not an exciting prospect.

Kyra Dixon, a blue-collar girl from the boondocks, is dedicated to her job at a community center that matches underprivileged kids with rescue dogs. When she runs into Will Chase—Connecticut blue blood, billionaire CEO, and her old college crush—she’s surprised that he asks a favor from her: to be his date for his uptight family’s dreaded annual garden party. If his parents don’t approve, all the better.
Kyra’s not about to say no. It’ll give her a chance to be oh-so-close to her unrequited love. What begins as a little fling turns so mad hot, so fast, that Kyra finds herself falling all over again for a fantasy that won’t come true. How can it? She doesn’t belong in Will’s world. She doesn’t want to. But Will does want to belong in hers.
All he has to do now is prove it. Will is prepared to give up whatever is necessary to get what his heart most desires.

EXCERPT:

“Speaking of my family, I came here with an ulterior motive.”
“Oh?” What on earth could Will want from her?
“My mother throws an annual spring garden party—she calls it her Spring Fling—in Connecticut, on the family farm. She invites the whole extended family, all her friends, and my father’s business associates. I wondered if you might be willing to come with me. Next Sunday. Short notice, I know.”
His gaze didn’t waver from her face, which made it hard to respond, since she had to concentrate on not letting her mouth fall open in astonishment.
“I, um, well, that sounds like fun.” Total lie. It sounded terrifying. But she had Sunday off from work, so she had no commitments to stop her.
“Fun?” He shook his head. “It’s stuffy and tense and boring. My family all snap at each other when no one else is listening. That’s why I’m asking you to come as a buffer.”
“When you put it that way, how can I refuse?” She would be like a fish that didn’t even know which way the ocean was. But the chance to see Will in his childhood environment was irresistible. In college, he’d dropped casual comments about racing his sailboat on Long Island Sound, or his sister getting thrown from her horse in a cross-country event, or his mother winning the club’s tennis championship. It sounded like The Great Gatsby come to life. She had to experience it just once. “I’d be happy to go with you.”
The expression that crossed his face was hard to read, except for relief. “That’s the best news I’ve had all day,” he said.
“What’s the dress code?”
“Casual. It’s outdoors. There are tents in case it rains. Although even the weather rarely dares to displease my mother.”
“‘Casual’ covers a lot of territory for women,” she said. “Not jeans, I assume.”
He thought for a minute. “Dresses, sort of colorful. Flat shoes because of the grass. Straw hats, if it’s sunny.”
“What are you wearing?” That might help.
“My uniform. Khakis and a button-down shirt. Loafers.”
“No tie?”
“Hell, no!” he said. “Shirtsleeves rolled up, too.”
She got the picture, and she had nothing appropriate to wear. She sighed inwardly. This was going to cost her more money than she could afford. However, she couldn’t resist the opportunity to journey into the exotic country of upper-crust Connecticut. Not to mention, spending time with her college crush, who was even more crushworthy now.
“Okay, a rolled-up shirtsleeves kind of dress.” She took a gulp of her club soda as she debated where to find a dress that looked expensive but was bargain priced.
“I’ll pick you up at noon. We’ll make a fashionably late entrance. Which means we won’t have to endure the party as long.”
“This sounds more and more delightful all the time.”
Will finally smiled, albeit with an edge. “It won’t be as bad for you. They’re not your family.”
“I hear you.” But at least he still had his mother and father. As complicated as her parents had made her life, she sometimes felt terribly alone without them.
He sat back against the banquette. “Now I’m looking forward to the party.”
“You don’t have to flatter me. I’ve agreed to go.” But she couldn’t stop a smile of gratification from curling the corners of her mouth.
“You might begin to have second thoughts.” He pulled out his cell phone. “May I get your number so I don’t have to track you down?”
He tapped at the phone’s screen as she rattled off her phone number.
“Do you still have my cell number or did you chuck my card?” he asked with that self-deprecating smile that always charmed her.
“Just text me and I’ll have it on my phone.”
“So you chucked it.”
The disappointment in his tone surprised her.
“No, it’s at my apartment.”
His fingers flew over the keys of his phone.
A ping sounded from her back pocket, indicating she’d gotten his text, and she started to reach for her phone.
“Read it later,” he said with a roguish glint in his eyes. He placed his empty glass on the tray. “My apologies, but I have to go. Overseas business makes for odd working hours.”

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AUTHOR INFO:

Nancy Herkness is the award-winning author of the Wager of Hearts, Whisper Horse, and Second Glances series, as well as several other contemporary romance novels. With degrees in English literature and creative writing from Princeton University, she has earned the New England Readers’ Choice award, the Book Buyers Best Top Pick honor, and the National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, and she is a two-time nominee for the Romance Writers of America’s RITA Award.

 Nancy is a native of West Virginia but now lives in suburban New Jersey with a goofy golden retriever.


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