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BOOK BLAST ~ Suddenly Dating by Julia London ~ #Giveaway

 The ruse is starting to feel real—and romantic. 

 

SUDDENLY DATING
Lake Haven #2
Julia London
Releasing Nov 8th, 2016
Montlake

If only Lola Dunne had the time—and the courage—she’d write her novel, and maybe even start dating again. When her friend offers the use of her summer home overlooking Lake Haven, Lola sees the chance to focus on herself for a change, and she eagerly accepts.

Engineer Harry Westbrook is waiting for his ship to come in. But it’s not happening soon enough for his girlfriend, who’s left him for good…again. To nurse Harry’s heartache, his pal extends an invite to his lake house in East Beach.

When it turns out that Harry’s and Lola’s friends are a divorcing, not-on-speaking-terms couple sparring over the same house, the strangers find themselves accidental (and reluctant) roommates for the summer. They agree to make the best of it, even posing as a couple to mingle among East Beach’s well-heeled crowd. But the ruse is starting to feel real—and romantic. Are they brave enough to reveal their feelings before the summer nights turn cold?

 

EXCERPT

New York City April

The first time Melissa broke up with Harry was on a Wednesday night, because Harry had come home later than he’d  said he would. Okay,    a lot later. Late-late. But he couldn’t help it—his crew had run into a problem installing a support beam under a bridge and it had taken a colossal effort by dozens of men to right that sinking ship.

When he walked into their little apartment, he knew he was in trouble. Melissa was sitting at the bistro table with an empty wine bottle before her and the dregs of said bottle in her glass. There was a plate of food in Harry’s spot: congealed spaghetti and something else he didn’t want to examine too closely. “I’m sorry—”

“I don’t want to hear it,” she snapped with a queenly flick of her wrist. “I’m done.”

Done. What did that mean, exactly? For the evening? With him? Harry wanted to ask, but as he was a veteran of this relationship, he knew better than to seek clarification when that much wine obviously had been drunk.

Melissa’s blue eyes narrowed; she knew he didn’t know what she meant. She came to her feet. Clumsily. And swaying a little when she pushed her long dark hair back over her shoulder. She had on a very short skirt and heels that made her look hot, and, God, Harry wished he’d made it home on time.

“I’ve had it with you, Harry. You’re always late. You come in looking like some Game of Thrones character with your shaggy hair and your dirty clothes,” she said, gesturing wildly in his direction.

“Well . . . I work in bridge construction,” he said calmly. “It’s kind of a dirty job. I apologize for my hair, but you know that I wear a hard hat most of the day.”

“So you can’t get a haircut?” she cried, and pitched forward, catch- ing herself on the table.

This was the first he knew that his hair was an issue. He dug in his pocket for a hair band and pulled it back into a short tail.

“Oh, yeah, that works,” she snapped. “Here’s the thing, Harry. You do whatever you want,” she sang, casting her arm wide, “and then you expect me to sit here and wait with a dinner I slaved over.”

Here they went with the same sort of argument they’d been having a lot lately. “I don’t expect you to wait, Melissa. That’s why I told you to go ahead without me,” he reminded her. “And, to be fair, it’s spaghetti.”

Fire leapt into her blue eyes.

“Not that I don’t appreciate it,” he hastily added. Jesus, he didn’t want to do this right now. He was tired, he was hungry, and that damn support beam was going to cost him more money he didn’t have.

 

 

 

Julia London is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers
Weekly bestselling author of more than thirty romance novels. Her historical
titles include the popular Desperate Debutantes series, the Secrets of Hadley
Green series, and the Cabot Sisters series; her contemporary works include the
Lake Haven, Pine River, and Cedar Springs series. She has won the RT Bookclub
Award for Best Historical Romance and has been a six-time finalist for the
prestigious RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction. She lives in Austin,
Texas.
 

 

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BOOK BLAST ~ Tru Blue by Melissa Foster ~ #giveaway

He wore the skin of a killer, and bore the heart of a lover…

 

TRU BLUE
A Sexy Standalone Romance
Melissa Foster
Releasing Nov 9th, 2016

 

He wore the skin of a killer, and
bore the heart of a lover…
 

 

There’s nothing Truman
Gritt won’t do to protect his family–Including spending years in jail for a
crime he didn’t commit. When he’s finally released, the life he knew is turned
upside down by his mother’s overdose, and Truman steps in to raise the children
she’s left behind. Truman’s hard, he’s secretive, and he’s trying to save a
brother who’s even more broken than he is. He’s never needed help in his life,
and when beautiful Gemma Wright tries to step in, he’s less than accepting. But
Gemma has a way of slithering into people’s lives and eventually she pierces
through his ironclad heart. When Truman’s dark past collides with his future,
his loyalties will be tested, and he’ll be faced with his toughest decision
yet.



EXCERPT

Chapter One

TRUMAN GRITT LOCKED the door to Whiskey Automotive and stepped into the stormy September night. Sheets of rain blurred his vision, instantly drenching his jeans and T-shirt. A slow smile crept across his face as he tipped his chin up, soaking in the shower of freedom. He made his way around the dark building and climbed the wooden stairs to the deck outside his apartment. He could have used the interior door, but after being behind bars for six long years, Truman took advantage of the small pleasures he’d missed out on, like determining his own schedule, deciding when to eat and drink, and standing in the fucking rain if he wanted to. He leaned on the rough wooden railing, ignoring the splinters of wood piercing his tattooed forearms, squinted against the wetness, and scanned the cars in the junkyard they used for parts—and he used to rid himself of frustrations. He rested his leather boot on the metal box where he kept his painting supplies. Truman didn’t have much—his old extended-cab truck, which his friend Bear Whiskey had held on to for him while he was in prison, this apartment, and a solid job, both of which were compliments of the Whiskey family. The only family he had anymore.

Emotions he didn’t want to deal with burned in his gut, causing his chest to constrict. He turned to go inside, hoping to outrun thoughts of his own fucked-up family, whom he’d tried—and failed—to save. His cell phone rang with his brother’s ringtone, “A Beautiful Lie” by 30 Seconds to Mars.

“Fuck,” he muttered, debating letting the call go to voicemail, but six months of silence from his brother was a long time. Rain pelleted his back as he pressed his palm to the door to steady himself. The ringing stopped, and he blew out a breath he hadn’t realized he’d trapped inside. The phone rang again, and he froze.

He’d just freed himself from the dredges of hell that he’d been thrown into in an effort to save his brother. He didn’t need to get wrapped up in whatever mess the drug-addicted fool had gotten himself into. The call went to voicemail, and Truman eyed the metal box containing his painting supplies. Breathing like he’d been in a fight, he wished he could paint the frustration out of his head. When the phone rang for the third time in as many minutes, the third time since he was released from prison six months ago, he reluctantly answered.

“Quincy.” He hated the way his brother’s name came out sounding like the enemy. Quincy had been just a kid when Truman went to prison. Heavy breathing filled the airwaves. The hairs on Truman’s forearms and neck stood on end. He knew fear when he heard it. He could practically taste it as he ground his teeth together.

“I need you,” his brother’s tortured voice implored.

Need me? Truman had hunted down his brother after he was released from prison, and when he’d finally found him, Quincy was so high on crack he was nearly incoherent—but it didn’t take much for fuck off to come through loud and clear. What Quincy needed was rehab, but Truman knew from his tone that wasn’t the point of the call.

Before he could respond, his brother croaked out, “It’s Mom. She’s really bad.”

Fuck. He hadn’t had a mother since she turned her back on him more than six years ago, and he wasn’t about to throw away the stability he’d finally found for the woman who’d sent him to prison and never looked back.

He scrubbed a hand down his rain-soaked face. “Take her to the hospital.”

“No cops. No hospitals. Please, man.”

A painful, high-pitched wail sounded through the phone.

“What have you done?” Truman growled, the pit of his stomach plummeting as memories of another dark night years earlier came rushing in. He paced the deck as thunder rumbled overhead like a warning. “Where are you?”

Quincy rattled off the address of a seedy area about thirty minutes outside of Peaceful Harbor, and then the line went dead.

Truman’s thumb hovered over the cell phone screen. Three little numbers—9-1-1— would extricate him from whatever mess Quincy and their mother had gotten into. Images of his mother spewing lies that would send him away and of Quincy, a frightened boy of thirteen, looking devastated and childlike despite his near six-foot stature, assailed him.

Push the buttons.

Push the fucking buttons.

He remembered Quincy’s wide blue eyes screaming silent apologies as Truman’s sentence was revealed. It was those pleading eyes he saw now, fucked up or not, that had him trudging through the rain to his truck and driving over the bridge, leaving Peaceful Harbor and his safe, stable world behind.

 

Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA
Today
 bestselling and award-winning author. She writes sexy and
heartwarming contemporary romance, new adult romance, and women’s fiction with
emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the
last page. Melissa’s emotional journeys are lovingly erotic, perfect beach
reads, and always family oriented. 

 

 

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BOOK BLAST ~ One Snowy Night by Jill Shalvis ~ #giveaway

Jill Shalvis returns to Heartbreaker Bay 
with a fun and festive holiday novella!

 

ONE SNOWY NIGHT
Heartbreaker Bay #2.5
Jill Shalvis
Releasing Nov 8th, 2016

 

New York Times bestselling
author Jill Shalvis returns to Heartbreaker Bay with a fun and festive holiday
novella!
 

It’s Christmas Eve and Rory
Andrews is desperate to get home to the family she hasn’t seen in years.
Problem is, her only ride to Lake Tahoe comes in the form of the annoyingly
handsome Max Stranton, and his big, goofy, lovable dog Carl.
Hours stuck in a truck with the dead sexy Max sounds like a fate worse than
death (not), but Rory’s out of options. She’s had a crush on Max since high
school and she knows he’s attracted to her, too. But they have history… and Max
is the only one who knows why it went south.

They’ve done a good job of ignoring their chemistry so far, but a long road
trip in a massive blizzard might be just what they need to face their past… and
one steamy, snowy night is all it takes to bring Max and Rory together at last.

EXCERPT

Christmas Eve had the nerve to show up just like it did every year: way too quickly and with ridiculous fanfare.

The nerve.

Rory Andrews stood in the courtyard of the Pacific Pier Building in San Francisco, surrounded by sparkly holiday lights and enough garlands to give the place its own ozone, and told herself things could be worse.

She just wasn’t sure how.

It was the unknown, she decided. Because this year, unlike the past six, she’d be spending Christmas with her family, a thought that caused a swarm of butterflies to take flight in her belly.

Not an uncommon feeling since she’d turned twenty-three a few months back and decided it was time to become a person she could be proud of if it killed her. And given the guy leaning against one of the lamp poles clearly waiting for her, arms crossed, frown in place, it just might.

Max Stranton. At his side sat Carl, his huge, eternally hungry, adorable Doberman.

“No,” she said, not to Carl but to Carl’s owner. Who was not lovable. “No way.”

As always when their gazes locked, Max’s was a disconcerting mix of heat and . . . something else that she couldn’t quite figure out, as he was good at hiding when he wanted to be. She never quite knew how to take the heat because it seemed reluctant. He was attracted to her but didn’t want to be.

Ditto. He made her knees wobble. And also a couple of other inner reactions that shouldn’t be happening in public.

“Merry Christmas to you too, Rory,” he said, and damn. It wasn’t just his eyes. His voice was rough and sexy, and for that matter, so was the rest of him.

He worked for an investigations and security firm in the building. Basically he and the rest of his team were fixers and finders for hire. To say that Max was good at his job was an understatement. He stood there looking like sex on a stick with a duffle bag slung over a broad shoulder, his dark hair two weeks past needing a cut, and the icy wind of an incoming storm plastering his clothes to a body that could be registered as a lethal weapon.

“What are you doing here?” she asked calmly even if her heart was anything but, pounding all the way up to her throat and ears because she knew. She knew exactly why he was here. “I don’t need a ride home.”

A flash of wry humor slid in with all that sizzling heat. “Because you’d rather take two buses and a train than get into my truck with me?” he asked.

Well yes, actually.

 



New
York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the
Sierras with her family and far too many assorted quirky characters. Any
resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental.

Look for Jill’s latest, SWEET LITTLE LIES on shelves and e-readers now, and get
all her bestselling, award-winning books wherever romances are sold.

Visit Jill’s website for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her
city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.

 

 

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BOOK BLAST ~ Paper Love by Aubrey Wynne ~ #giveaway

It’s
her extraordinary inner beauty that captures his heart. 

 

PAPER LOVE
Chicago Christmas #2
Aubrey Wynne
Released Oct 18th, 2016

 

Growing up
in a Papua New Guinea mission, Joss Palmateer is a gentle soul with a unique
view of life. Still adjusting to a new home in the U.S and the sudden loss of
her mother, love is the last thing on her mind.

Sexy physical therapist, Ben Montgomery, meets his sister’s friend and the
sparks fly. He takes it as a challenge when she ignores his advances, but it’s
her extraordinary inner beauty that captures his heart. With the help of a
stray homing pigeon and an old origami legend, Ben sets an unwavering course of
romance to win her love.

 EXCERPT

As they walked past the fountain, he stopped, swallowed, and plunged into the speech he’d planned for the last week. “Joss, I know you are hesitant to date me, and I understand your reasons. I can’t blame you but it’s also not my fault that I’m…popular.”

She opened her mouth to speak, and he gently put a finger on her lips. “Hear me out. Since I laid eyes on you that night, my world has tilted. I feel a connection to you that I’ve never felt before, and I think you feel the same.”

She took his finger in her hand. “I don’t know if I’m in a place where I can move forward with a relationship.” Her eyes held a pain that threatened to rip his chest open. He wanted to heal her, remove the hurt from her eyes now and forever.

“I know that. I’ve just finished my internship, and I’m starting a permanent position at the clinic.” He paused, stroking her cheek with the back of his finger. “Let’s take a month to get to know each other. You decide if you are staying or going back to your old life. I’ll get settled into my new job. We see each other as friends, no pressure or romance.”

“So no strings.”

“Exactly. Except I won’t be seeing anyone else. I need to prove to you that I’m not a player. Then in a month, we’ll reassess. If you are in a good place by then, we’ll make it official and start dating.” He let out a sigh. He couldn’t read her face at all.

“One month?” She looked up at him, her eyes narrowed. “You’ve thought this through, haven’t you?”

He nodded, hoping this brilliant idea didn’t backfire on him. “It’s a deal. So I’ll see you without any romantic overtures?”

He hesitated. Not kissing her over the next month would be one of the hardest things he’d ever done. “No romance starting tomorrow.”

“Tomorrow?”

“I want you to know what you may be missing. Over the next month you can think about this.” He cupped her face in his hands, brushing his lips softly against hers. Every muscle in his body jumped to attention at the touch. His desire flared, and his head dipped again, covering her lips, coaxing her to respond.

Her hands gripped his biceps, clinging to him as if she might fall. A soft sigh escaped her, and he thought he would explode. He buried his face in her shoulder, her silky hair caressing his cheek as he breathed in the scent of her. Joss had been sent to him. He would start the next phase of his life with her by his side. And he would pull her through her troubled waters. Ben gave her one more lingering kiss then pulled her hand through his arm. They walked silently toward the parking garage.

His heart thumped slow and steady as he realized he’d found love. No sweaty palms. No racing heart. No panic. It was more like an enchantment, this discovery of a person who filled him with peace and hope, who made him want to be better, be a hero for someone else. But his usual bulldozer style would not work on Joss. Exuberance and charm would bounce off her shield. Patience and determination were the key; Joss would pay attention to his actions not his words.

Just like his beating heart, slow and steady would win this race.

BUY NOW
 

 



Bestselling
and award-winning author Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her
husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by
trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night.
Obsessions include history, travel, trailriding and all things Christmas.
Her short stories, Merry Christmas, Henry and Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies have
won Readers Choice Awards and Dante’s Gift received the 2016 Golden Quill and
Heart of Excellence award, as well as being a Maggie and Aspen Gold finalist.

Besides her Chicago Christmas novellas, Aubrey will release “A Vintage
Romance” series inspired by tales of her stepfather, who served for the
British Air Force in WWII. The stories will be set in the 40s & 50s. Her
medieval fantasy series will launch in 2017 with Rolf’s Quest.

 

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What to Read Wednesday with Claire McEwen author of Home Free ~ #giveaway

I’m so glad you could stop by for What To Read Wednesday! Please help me welcome Claire McEwen to the blog. She’s talking about baking (always a good subject) and how it ties in with her latest book HOME FREE. 

Afterward, please enter her giveaway!

Take it away Claire …

 

Bake Your Blues Away

 

In my new book, Home Free, the heroine, Mandy Allen, loves to bake.  She’s turned it into a business, baking all kinds of delicious cakes and cookies for local events.

 

Her blueberry muffins are so delicious that after the hero, Arch Hoffman, takes a bite, he feels “transported to another planet. A happy place where nothing mattered but sugary, fluffy bread.”  He’s just spent a decade in prison, so he doesn’t have much good food to compare it to, but still, they’re really good muffins!

 

But there’s more to Mandy’s baking than meets the eye. She’s a very anxious person, and I learned, when researching this book, that baking is known to help people who are struggling with mental health issues, or who are just feeling low.

 

Why is baking so therapeutic?  For a lot of reasons, apparently.  It eases stress because mixing the ingredients can be very meditative.  It is somewhat physical, so all that stirring, rolling and cutting out cookies is good for our bodies and brains. Bread baking is said to be especially beneficial because of all the kneading.  So keep that bread machine in the cupboard and make bread the old-fashioned way!

 

Baking is also a creative outlet, which makes it naturally relaxing.  Plus, baking is a nurturing, comforting activity and you get something delicious to eat at the end.

 

And many people who bake give some of the end product away. This helps their mental health because they don’t eat too many sweets, which can increase anxiety and depression, and it is well known that giving to others can feel very uplifting.

 

So the next time you have the blues, try baking.  And for a great blueberry muffin recipe, try this one!  http://www.nytimes.com/1987/06/13/style/de-gustibus-the-battle-over-blueberry-muffins.html  According to the article, many people consider it the best recipe out there.

 

I tried it and the muffins were delicious.  But are they better than Mandy’s?  Arch Hoffman would tell you no, there could be nothing better. But he’s falling in love with her, so he’s a little biased!

 

I hope you’ll give Home Free a chance.  It truly is a sweet love story with a hopeful, Fall holiday feeling.  And the next time you have the blues… try a little baking!

 

 

His first taste of freedom was only the beginning…

 

HOME FREE
Sierra Legacy #3
Claire McEwen
Released Nov 1st, 2016
Harlequin Superromance

His
first taste of freedom was only the beginning… 

Arch Hoffman has paid for
his crimes. All he wants is to come home to rural California and start over.
He’s not looking to be a hero when he rescues a wedding cake from hitting the
dirt at the ranch next door. But culinary artist Mandy Allen’s irresistible
smile makes him glad to save the day–and thankful that they’re neighbors.

Mandy’s just the distraction Arch needs. Her sweet voice quiets the memories
that threaten his chance to be a better man, and he’s determined to help her
confront her fears. But the past is its own prison, and even love might not be
enough to set them free.


EXCERPT

A flicker of motion across the black backs of the cattle caught Mandy’s eye. Dark hair under a brown cowboy hat. Long legs in faded jeans. Shoulders wide under his padded canvas jacket. Arch Hoffman.

He was standing on the rail of the fence, waving with both arms to get her attention. She rolled down the window. “Hey,” she called, knowing that it didn’t matter what she said. There was no way she was getting out of this situation without looking like an idiot.

“What’s going on?” He shouted the words, but it was still hard to hear him over the indignant mooing. The steers wanted breakfast, and they were confused and frustrated. Well, boys, welcome to the club. She’d been confused and frustrated for years now.

“Not much,” she called back in a lame attempt at nonchalance. “What’s up with you?”

She could see the confusion on Arch’s face even from this distance. He probably hadn’t been expecting small talk. “Um, not much. You need a little help there?”

She forced a breezy voice. “I’m okay…just need to get out of this truck and get feeding.”

“Oh.” He paused for a moment, as if trying to come up with the right words. “It’s just that…you fell into the cab.”

How long had he been there, watching her make a fool of herself? “Oh, ya know, just lost my balance for a minute.” It was almost impossible to sound casual while yelling over the ruckus of forty upset steers.

Arch jumped off the fence and Mandy lost sight of him. She had a tiny moment to hope that he’d decided she was fine and was gone on his way. Then she saw him swing up on the back of a big black gelding and guide it along the fence to the gate. Leaning gracefully from the saddle, he let himself into the pasture, closing the gate behind him.

Mandy reached for the door handle, but her hand was shaking so hard she couldn’t grasp it. She wanted to get out and face Arch while tossing hay out of the truck like a pro. But fear had its cold claws sunk in deep.

With a wave of his rope, Arch cleared the steers easily from his path. He took their place at her truck window, looking down at her from his relaxed perch in the saddle. “Do you want me to feed them?”

His voice was a balm of gentle concern that almost brought out the tears fizzing hot beneath her eyes. She felt her cheeks heat, too, and knew her usually pale skin had gone scarlet. She couldn’t answer. But she nodded.

“Okay,” he said. “Just sit tight.”

She watched him in the side mirror as he guided his horse alongside the vehicle and leaned over, grabbing a few flakes of the hay she’d stacked there. He threw them to his right and several of the steers trotted toward the pile. Quickly he grabbed more hay and tossed it out behind the truck, creating another feeding area. Soon the pasture was littered with piles of hay surrounded by happy cattle. Mandy buried her face in her hands. He made it look so simple.

 

Claire
McEwen
lives
by the ocean in Northern California with her husband, son and a scruffy,
mischievous terrier.  When not dreaming up new stories, she can be found
digging in her garden with a lot of enthusiasm but, unfortunately, no green
thumb.  She loves discovering flea-market treasures, walking on the beach,
dancing, traveling and reading, of course!
 

 

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RELEASE BLAST ~ Making Christmas and What Happens at Midnight by Laura Chapman ~ #giveaway

Brings
the warmth of the holiday season to life.

 

MAKING CHRISTMAS
A Novella
Laura Chapman
Releasing Nov 8th, 2016
While
settling into a new career in a new community, Ivy is determined not to let the
holiday season pass her by. Enter the grownup advent calendar: twenty-four days
of festivities to celebrate Christmas. What begins as a bit of fun turns into a
mission to spread cheer when she meets Everett. After learning about his bad
Christmas attitude, she invites him to join her quest. Despite his initial
reservations, Everett quickly gets caught up in the spirit of the calendar. But
when new feelings surface and are impossible to ignore, Everett’s inner
curmudgeon threatens to put a damper on the whole experience.
 
This
holiday novella from Laura Chapman brings the warmth of the holiday season to
life.
BUY NOW

 

WHAT HAPPENS AT MIDNIGHT
A Novella
Laura Chapman
Releasing Nov 8th, 2016
Romantic
comedy junkie Natalie lives out those fantasies in real life three New Year’s
Eves in a row when fate throws her together with the same handsome stranger. A
heartbreaking turn of events leaves her swearing off of love, forevers, and the
holidays (bah humbug). That is until the mystery man from her past reappears
years later. Over a holiday season, Natalie struggles to reconcile the
whimsical notions of her past with the practical sensibilities she has worked
so hard to develop. With the countdown to a new year looming, she must decide
whether or not she is willing to give happily ever after another shot.
 
In this
holiday novella by Laura Chapman, celebrate the holiday season with a love
story about second, and fifth, chances and learning to trust your heart.

EXCERPT

Gross. Just, gross. I push away from the random guy trying to shove his random tongue down my throat and swipe the saliva from my face.

This does not make the list of ways I want to ring in the new year. I’m not opposed to locking lips at midnight on New Year’s Eve given the chance to do it right. But I don’t support an unexpected smooch from a drunk creeper who doesn’t understand the meaning of personal space. And he missed his mark. There’s nothing sexy about having a tongue thrust up your nose. Trust me on this one.

Out of all the bars on Sixth Street, I had to stumble into this one. Full of scuzzy guys I don’t find appealing. I’m more into the quiet, gentleman type, who doesn’t seem to exist outside of a Jane Austen novel or Nora Ephron movie.

If only my roommate, Mallory, had more refined taste, too. She met some fuzzy-chinned man wearing flannel and torn khakis an hour ago, and I haven’t seen her since. I don’t expect to see her again until tomorrow morning. She sent me the “don’t wait up” look she’s been giving since we were freshmen in college. Maybe someday I’ll be the one sending her the “I’m going to get lucky” signal.

Until then, I should probably do something about this guy. I slip away from the wall so he can’t corner me again. “Thanks, but no thanks.”

“Oh, come on,” Nose Licker says. His eyes go a little droopy, probably in an attempt to be sultry. It doesn’t work. “No one wants to be alone when the clock strikes midnight.”

“Maybe some of us do.”

He steps toward me, swaying a little. Too many Jäger bombs and whiskey sours will do that to a person. “I’ll show you a good time.”

“Again, thanks, but no thanks.”

“I can—” He breaks off and turns his attention to my right. I shift my gaze in time to catch another stranger, this one even more imposing, slipping an arm around my shoulder.

“There you are,” the man says. “I’ve been looking for you everywhere. Sorry I disappeared for so long.”

I stare up at him dumbly. Who is this guy with the dark hair that curls ever so slightly around his ears and a strong, tanned jaw? Did I meet him somewhere and forget? Or is he another loser desperately trying to take advantage of a single woman’s sentimental side on a holiday? At least he’s in better control of himself.

Nose Licker’s droopy eyes narrow even more. “Who are you?”

“I’m her boyfriend,” the stranger says loudly. I’m about to protest, but he turns and whispers, “Go with me on this.”

“Is this true?” Nose Licker asks, having the nerve to appear taken aback. “After everything we’ve been through, you’ve had a boyfriend this whole time?”

“That’s right,” I lie. “I can’t figure out what came over me.”

“She must have been charmed by your good looks,” my fake boyfriend says. “We’re terribly sorry for any confusion.”

Nose Licker glances back and forth between us. I’m immobilized in the stranger’s arms. I want this to work, but I can’t believe it will.

“Okay.” Nose Licker steps back with his hands up. “My bad.”

He turns on his heel in search of another conquest. Seriously? I realize I wanted him to leave me alone, but he gave me up that easily? I can’t decide whether to be relieved or offended.

The new guy lets out a whistle and releases his loose hold on me. “That was crazy.”

“Yeah.” He’s telling me. He wasn’t here for the whole exchange. I’m sure he caught the disaster of a kiss, but he missed the buildup, which included Nose Licker’s recitation of his favorite lines from Dumb and Dumber and The Big Lebowski. They’re both hilarious movies, but they didn’t work as proper foreplay in this situation. Especially because he butchered all the best quotes. “Thanks for your help.”

“You were managing it okay on your own.” His lip curves up. “But I figured you wouldn’t mind if I expedited the process.”

“Not at all.” I give a little laugh to mask my awkwardness. “This is not how I imagined myself celebrating my first grown-up New Year’s Eve.”

A dark eyebrow flies up. “Oh yeah?”

“In college, I was always back home for the holidays. And while my family is nice enough, I was always excited about what it might be like once I was living on my own. I’d have my life a little more together, and I’d be at some swanky party getting ready to kiss my date, Ryan Gosling.”

His face scrunches. “Gosling. I should have figured as much.”

My eyes narrow. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

“He’s an obvious choice.”

“And who would you have as your imaginary New Year’s date that’s so much more original?”

“There’s only one woman for me.” His dark eyes turn glassy as he probably paints a mental picture of some perfectly coiffed model wearing a skin-tight sequined dress to accentuate her perfect figure. “She’s adventurous and can handle herself in any situation. She’s a little bit older, but that means more experience. She defines beauty, mystery, and class. She’s led a fascinating life and would have a lot to offer in the ways of conversation.”

“Who?”

“Milla Jovovich.”

“From Resident Evil?”

“Yep.”

“I get it.” I nod slowly, letting that information sink in. “You’re a nerd.”

I wish I could crawl into a hole and hide the second I’ve said it. I can’t believe I insulted a stranger—a nice and handsome one by all appearances—only a few minutes after he helped me out.

Instead of being offended, he actually laughs. “How’d you guess?”

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Laura
Chapman
is the
author of First & Goal, Going for Two, Three & Out, and The Marrying
Type. A native Nebraskan, she loves football, Netflix marathons, and her cats,
Jane and Bingley. Connect with her online on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and
YouTube and on her website at www.laurachapmanbooks.com.
 

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Posted by on November 7, 2016 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights

 

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.99 SALE BLITZ ~ 2 books by Entangled Pubslishing LOVESTRUCK line

#GetTempted for ONLY .99 Cents

 

TEMPTING MR. WRONG
Wrong Man #2
Kerri Carpenter
Entangled Lovestruck

 

A little temptation never hurt
anyone…
 
Lance
Townsend craves freedom after years living a structured existence in the Army.
But just as he’s about to start on his bucket list, Lance receives an
unexpected request: check in on his goddaughter. The problem? The adorable
little girl’s aunt is the one woman he’s never been able to forget.
 
Carly
Quigley can’t believe her brother’s best friend, the man who jilted her years
ago, is at her door. He claims her brother asked him to check in on her niece
and their fixer-upper, but all either of them can focus on is their undeniable
attraction. Carly knows Lance is counting down the hours to leave, which makes
him the wrong man for her. Unfortunately, the wrong man has become
oh-so-tempting.

Each book in the Wrong Man series is a
standalone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.

 
DRIVEN TO TEMPTATION
Driven to Love #1
Melia Alexander
Entangled Lovestruck
She’s a gorgeous distraction he
can’t afford…or ignore.
 
Aidan Ross
might be an engineering genius, but people skills? Not this soldier’s forte.
Thankfully, a trusted friend is accompanying him to a make-or-break
tradeshow…but then a bubbly redhead hops into his truck, claiming to be his new
road trip buddy. She’s a gorgeous distraction he can’t afford. Or ignore.
 
Delaney
Harper comes from a family of engineers—male engineers. With several impressive
projects under her belt, she’s on a mission to prove she can hang with the big
boys, too. But cracking the sexy, closed-off CEO is tougher than she
expects…and hotter than she could have imagined.
 
With the
tempting woman disrupting his carefully planned schedule, Aidan can’t focus on
the road, much less their upcoming presentation. The future of his company is
riding on this trip, and if they’re to land a huge account, he has to keep his
head—and his heart—in the game…

 

Kerri
Carpenter began writing in her grandmother’s kitchen at the age of seven in a
small town outside of Pittsburgh, PA. A life-long fan of reading, she got lost
in the worlds of The Baby-sitters Club and Sweet Valley High. She also assumed
that everyone had characters and plots forming in their heads at all times.

Once she turned to romance novels, she couldn’t get enough of books with happy
endings, so she started writing her own. Now, Kerri writes contemporary
romances, usually set in small towns. She enjoys reading, cooking, watching
movies, taking Zumba classes, rooting for Pittsburgh sports teams, and anything
sparkly. Kerri lives in Northern Virginia with her adorable (and mischievous)
poodle mix, Harry.

Melia Alexander is the author of
sassy, sexy, fun contemporary romances, but is also fortunate to spend her week
days at The Male Observation Lab (a.k.a. her job at a construction company)
where she gets to observe guys in their natural habitat. Though they often
behave like typical alpha males, in many instances she’s seen through their
personas to the heart of who they really are – the heroes of their own stories.
 
A native of Guam, Melia traded in warm, tropical breezes for the rainy
Pacific Northwest. She’s an avid reader who also loves romantic comedies –
preferably with a glass of CabSauv and a box of chocolates nearby. In her free
time, she’s busy conquering her CrossFit fears: ring dips, muscle snatches, and
the dreaded 800 meter run. Her family appreciates her attempts at cooking and
cleaning, although she spends it mostly daydreaming about her characters, which
sometimes results in a burnt meal and a half-cleaned house.
 

 

 
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Posted by on November 4, 2016 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights

 

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