What to Read Wednesday

29 May

Yep, it’s already here, the last Wednesday of May. And what does that mean? You’re right as usual…time to meet a new author and learn about another book on What to Read Wednesday.

Please help me welcome Carmen Falcone. She going to tantalize us with a wonderful guest post about Googling an ex and then share her blurb and excerpt from her contemporary romance Heating Up Hawaii.

Also, leave a comment along with your email address to be entered to win a $15 Amazon Gift card. Yep…that easy…comment, email addy, chance to win!

Take it away Carmen…

The Urge to Google an Ex

Dish it out, ladies: How many times have we caught ourselves wondering the whereabouts of our exes? Nowadays, with our ever-growing social media options, it’s easier to at least get a glimpse of their Facebook profile, or if you’re lucky, discreetly stalk them on Twitter (all depending on those darn privacy settings, of course!).

            Your current marital status doesn’t matter – single or married, dating or not… Haven’t we all at some point let curiosity get the best of us and wonder about that well-intentioned nerd we dated for two weeks back in high school, or the slimy bastard who broke our hearts in college? (And no, this post wasn’t written by a 19-year-old, I promise you. Although I often lie about my age, 19 is a stretch. Really.)

            Moving on, I’m a happily married woman in her (very) early thirties. There were a couple of exes I caught myself thinking about throughout the years, although nowadays the memories are a bit blurry. Of course, in my delusional fantasies, if I ever ran into them in person, I would be dressed to the nines, count a couple of my books among Oprah’s favorites, not to mention having a nomination for a kick-ass activist award to my name. Short order, right?

            The heroine of my latest release, Penny Ashbrook, has more realistic aspirations. Although more often than not she’s indulged in a pint of cookies ‘n’ cream ice cream while browsing the net to Google her ex, the formidable Luc Leoni, the last thing she wants is to see him in person – especially when he has the upper hand. Fate, of course, has other plans, as you’re about to read in the excerpt below:

            “Penny, I’ve just run into an old friend of yours,” her boss, Charles Dawn, told her while his fingers lightly touched her elbow. He prompted her to turn toward him and the tall, broad-shouldered man standing next to him.

Penny flashed her signature smile and squinted to get a sharper view of the man in front of her. An oversized palm tree shadowed him.

She guessed he was at least six feet two, which put her at a disadvantage at only five feet six. His dark gray designer suit looked tailor-made to fit the planes of his large chest, and good God, legs that went on and on. 

Old friend? She couldn’t remember having friends that looked this intimidating—old, or current. If she was honest with herself, the few friends she had, all vanished like dust after she’d called off her wedding.

But this man… He took a step in her direction, the setting sun illuminating his face as he moved out of the shade. She glanced at him like her eyes were old-fashioned camera lenses, capturing his features in slow motion and adjusting to his figure. His lips, sensual and rich like his clothes, twitched. As soon as her gaze collided with his, her heart skipped a beat for a few seconds only to resume and pound its way out of her beige linen dress.

Luc Leoni.

It couldn’t be, could it? To see him again after all these years.

Oh, but it was…

Penny stared into his two-colored eyes—one lighter than a clear blue sky, and the other reminiscent of murky seas. Yes, even they were ambiguous.

 “Luc.” She cleared her throat, and noticed a couple of fine lines around his mismatched pair.

“Penelope.” Luc’s velvety voice was like a warm caress. His French accent alone lured women to drop their underwear by his bedside. His deep pronunciation of her name hadn’t changed… Pen-ay-looh-paay.

Penny stiffened her back, offered him a professional handshake under Charles Dawn’s ambitious grin. Although she wished she could kick Luc Leoni where he deserved, she had to swallow her resentment and go along with it.

Luc took her hand in his larger one, and heat coiled low in her stomach. But instead of a professional handshake, he pulled her closer with a swift movement and leaned down. He kissed her on one cheek, his warm lips brushing gently on her skin. The whisper of a touch between his stubbled chin and her other cheek belted a wire of electricity into her system.

Penny smelled his earthy masculine cologne, where rich woodsy notes blended with a light citrus. Luc Leoni was a fantastic gift wrapping for an unworthy product. 

He stepped back.

This can’t be my imagination… The hot breeze ruffled a few lustrous black strands of his hair, warning her that it was all too real.

 “What a small world,” Charles said. “I did fail to ask where you two know each other from.”

Penny tried to swallow her growing apprehension. She must have some really bad karma to face the man who broke her heart, after all those years, in front of Charles: her boss, the father of her former fiancé, and the man who made it hard for her to come to work every day.

“Champagne?” A coiffed waitress offered, her smile widening at Luc, who simply thanked her and shook his head. Penny picked a flute, her fingers tightening around the chilled glass.

“I was an intern at a hotel in New York for a couple of months, and Luc managed that hotel.” Penny sipped the sparkling liquid hoping—no—needing to cool her unpleasant ardor.

“How long ago was it, seven, eight years?” Luc scratched his chin as if they discussed a far less important event. She saw an emotion she couldn’t—or didn’t want to— read in the depths of his eyes.

“Eight years.” And two months.


Now, please tell me I’m not alone in this, and share with me any stories about stalking exes online or even running into them later in life.

heatinguphawaii600x900Blurb : There is just one person standing between Penny Ashbrook’s dream of opening her own PR business or being stuck at her job–the formidable Luc Leoni–her first lover, and the man who lets nothing and no-one get in his way. Seeing him after so long brings all the hidden emotions after a life altering break-up to surface. Pain, denial and…lust.

Luc has made many sacrifices for his career, including Penny Ashbrook, the woman who set his aspirations back a year, but now she has returned and is more alluring than ever. After all these years, he thought a self-made billionaire as himself could master everything, but to resist the strong pull toward the one woman he can’t have is an impossible task.

When this unlikely pair is reunited they will have to face the many challenges set in their way, especially an attraction that has only heightened with time and a deadline quickly approaching.

Can their new bond surpass old—and new—fears?




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24 responses to “What to Read Wednesday

  1. Stacey Brutger

    May 29, 2013 at 7:06 am

    Wonderful excerpt! Very smooth read. It pulled me right into the story.
    Love the cover as well. Congrats on your book.

  2. Denise Bourret

    May 29, 2013 at 10:43 am

    I am reading this now! Speaking of stalking exes… that is how I met my husband. I was stalking my ex and met the love of my life. Not a waste of time LOL

    • Carmen Falcone

      May 29, 2013 at 10:50 am

      Denise, that’s awesome! Were you stalking him online or in real life? Sorry! Now I’m curious, lol. Thanks so much for leaving a comment and good luck! 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      May 29, 2013 at 10:52 am

      Love it Denise…how fun that you met your man that way. Thanks so much for coming by!

  3. D'Ann

    May 29, 2013 at 10:48 am

    Nice excerpt! I love the two colored eyes. I have an aunt like that!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 29, 2013 at 10:52 am

      Thanks so much for coming by D’Ann!

    • carmenfalcone

      May 29, 2013 at 10:53 am

      Thank you, D’Ann! I’ve heard some celebrities do have two-colored eyes but wear contact lenses… I’m like, WHY? It’s just so cool 😉 Good luck!

  4. Vivien Jackson

    May 29, 2013 at 11:40 am

    Yep, I had to read her name out loud in a pseudo-French accent. 😀 Yummy excerpt, Carmen!

    • carmenfalcone

      May 29, 2013 at 12:23 pm

      Vivien! It makes a big difference, doesn’t it? 😉 Thanks for commenting!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 29, 2013 at 3:00 pm

      Hi Vivien, thanks for stopping by the blog 🙂

  5. Brenda

    May 29, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    WOW–love the cover–and the excerpt.

    • carmenfalcone

      May 29, 2013 at 9:41 pm

      Thank you, Brenda! 🙂 Good luck!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 30, 2013 at 9:00 am

      I’m in total agreement Brenda! Thanks so much for coming by.

  6. Evelyn Berry

    May 29, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Sorry Carmen, I tweeted this and didn’t read the direction: A great excerpt, Carmen! The tension was palpable & made me squirm. European kisses always surprise me.

    • carmenfalcone

      May 29, 2013 at 10:08 pm

      No worries, Evelyn! Thank you for your support and good luck 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      May 30, 2013 at 9:00 am

      Thanks for coming by Evelyn 🙂

  7. Sara Walter Ellwood

    May 29, 2013 at 10:39 pm

    Great excerpt! Love the cover.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 30, 2013 at 9:01 am

      Glad you came by Sara…thank you.

    • carmenfalcone

      May 30, 2013 at 10:39 am

      Thank you, Sara! Good luck 🙂

  8. Samantha Darling

    May 30, 2013 at 5:30 am

    Great post and great book, Carmen! I admit, I have had a little search on an ex or two in the past, but shhhh! 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      May 30, 2013 at 9:01 am

      LOL…love it Samantha! Glad you dropped in.

    • carmenfalcone

      May 30, 2013 at 10:40 am

      Your secret is safe with me! Ha! 🙂
      Thanks for leaving a comment!


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