Monday, September 25, 2017

Unwrapping a Review of IMMORTALLY YOURS, book 26 in the Argeneau series by Lynsay Sands

I’ve said many times what a great fan I am of the Argeneau series by Lynsay Sands…well, some of the past few novels have been less than her best, but she’s back! IMMORTALLY YOURS, the 26th Argeneau is everything we expect from this series and I couldn’t be happier.

***eARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest and unscripted review.

Blurb for IMMORTALLY YOURS:

Irresistible chemistry and thrilling suspense combine in this electrifying new installment in New York Times bestselling author Lynsay Sands’ Argeneau series…

One hundred and twenty-five years is a long time to nurse a crush. That’s how long it’s been since Beth Argenis first met Cullen “Scotty” MacDonald and he instantly became the star of her most X-rated dreams. Back then, he was rescuing her from a Rogue Immortal. Now Beth’s a Rogue Hunter—a damn good one. She doesn’t need saving anymore, despite what Scotty thinks. What she does need is the fierce, wild desire that finally erupts between them.

Scotty has hesitated to claim Beth as his own. But one explosive kiss confirms what he’s long suspected: She’s his life mate. But Beth is tough, fearless, beautiful…and in immortal danger. Unless he wants to lose her forever, he’ll have to rethink everything he once believed about love and destiny as well as confront an enemy who’s terrifyingly close. 

~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Beth Argenis, as an Immortal, is a Rogue Hunter but during her mortal life, she was the victim of a hateful father, turned into a prostitute, and then forced to see all those whom she thought of as family murdered by a Rogue Immortal. One of her saviors, the Laird Cullen MacDonald, known as Scotty by all who know him, is a man who has haunted her dreams since her being turned and saved…he also has made it quite clear he wants nothing to do with her. But way over a century has passed and now he’s working alongside her in Canada and the dreams are getting sexier, hotter, and her attraction to him greater. When it’s suggested he might be her life mate, she rejects the idea since he obviously despises her. How could anyone not want his life mate?

Scotty MacDonald has lived a very long life. He’s also waited a very long time for a time for his life mate…the problem being that he’s known who she was all along only he’s not sure she’s ready or even if he wants her to be ready. His past conflicts with hers, making him think less of her only he refuses to see it. But he can’t stop worrying about her, dreaming about her, and desiring her. When a single kiss tells him everything that he needs to know, his brain continues to fight his heart.

Now Beth is in danger. Scotty is determined to keep her safe. He never wanted her to be a Rogue Hunter but now that she is, he will do whatever it takes to keep her safe even if it means risking his own life. She is his life mate even though he wishes he could erase her past, for his sake as well as hers.

Scotty is double Jamie Fraser sexy Scot! Yes, he’s grumpy, arrogant, and bossy but he’s a Laird after all…it comes with the title…but I still love him. Lynsay has conjured up some new and fun characters for us and introduced them in IMMORTALLY YOURS. Donny is our new comic relief with a tinge of innocence that just endears him completely to the reader. Kira is a new Russian born Immortal who has joined the Rogue Hunters under Beth’s tutelage and I can’t wait for her to have her own story as well as Donny his.

IMMORTALLY YOURS by Lynsay Sands is a true Argeneau fun and sexy paranormal written in the tradition of her earlier installments in the series. There’s great banter, comic relief, loads of action, and of course, hot Immortal sex complete with passing out. Hurrah! One of things I love best about this story is the wonderful backstory that Lynsay wove for us. Brilliant for helping us to understand Beth and Scotty so that we can only cheer for them once they get past their own obstacles to realize they are meant to be together.

I don’t want to give away too much because I want you to experience this one for yourself, but I highly recommend IMMORTALLY YOURS by Lynsay Sands because it’s Argeneau perfection. If you haven’t read this series yet…WHY NOT? You don’t have to be a fan of paranormal to enjoy the Argeneaus, their friends, and extended family. And IMMORTALLY YOURS is a perfect one to read to get your feet wet. I promise that if you read one…you’ll want to read more. So get started with IMMORTALLY YOURS by Lynsay Sands.

Happy Reading Everyone!

IMMORTALLY YOURS, an Argeneau novel by Lynsay Sands, Avon Romance, releasing September 26, 2017 in print and ebook formats at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks as well as other book vendors.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Happy Release Day! BRAYDEN, book one in the Beckett Brothers series by Susan Fisher-Davis

BRAYDEN
 A Beckett Brothers Novel
by Susan Fisher-Davis
available now at
Amazon  
and coming soon to 
Barnes & Noble | Kobobooks

First in a Brand New Series
BRAYDEN

Having lost five years to prison after wrongly convicted of murder, Brayden Beckett is starting over. Leaving Texas to return to Montana is step one, opening a rescue sanctuary for horses in honor of his late wife is step two, and doing whatever he can to protect his heart from the pain of falling in love again is step three.

Melissa Conroy has been in love with her best friend’s husband since the first moment she met him…so when he calls her out of the blue to offer her a job, she leaps at the chance. She knows how much he loved his wife but even if it only means being close to him, she is willing to risk the heartache of rejection until she becomes the other woman.

Terrified of losing someone he loves again and being left alone, Brayden pushes Melissa away even as he can’t help but seek her out, until he pushes her away one too many times and she says enough. Now he’s at risk of losing her forever and his greatest fear has come true. Is it possible to have two great loves in one lifetime—and love both at the same time?

About the Author:

Susan Fisher-Davis writes steamy, hot, sexy books that women love to read. Her stories always have a happily ever after and isn’t that what romance is about? After starting out with Secret Cravings Publishing, she decided to go indie when SCP closed their doors in August 2015. Now she writes and publishes with Blue Whiskey Publishing.
   
Susan was born and raised in a small town in the western part of Maryland surrounded by the Appalachian Mountains. She moved to Tennessee in 1996 with her husband and two children where she enjoys walks in the woods, fishing, and dreaming about hot men to share with us.
   
She currently has two other series out, The Men of Clifton, Montana and The Bad Boys of Dry River. Cowboys and bad boys...what more could any woman want? Her newest series, The Callahans, a series about four cousins, begins with A COWBOY FOR CHRISTMAS, a novella – nominated for a RONE award in 2017. This wonderful and heartwarming novella is available now, and the following books in the series will be full-length. Then there is FIT FOR A KING, a standalone novel – nominated for a Summer Indie Award in 2017, and a personal favorite of mine.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Release Day Blitz for TOYING WITH HER by Prescott Lane

TOYING WITH HER
by Prescott Lane

Available now, only 99¢ for limited time, at

A new Contemporary Romance standalone
from Prescott Lane


No one said finding love was easy, but when you invented the world’s bestselling vibrator, it’s near impossible. Yep, that’s right. That little toy hidden in your bedside table is my brain child. It’s aptly named, Woman on Top. And you know what they say...it’s lonely at the top.

So I’m headed home to my Southern roots. It’s supposed to be an extended Summer vacation—nothing more. But Rorke Weston has other plans for me. Plans that not only involve me being on top, but also underneath him.

It’s been said, you never forget your first. For me, that’s definitely true. No night has ever lived up to the one I spent with Rorke.

He’s turned into quite a man. Tan from the Southern sun, and stubborn as the day is long. And there’s nothing sweeter than the swipe of his tongue.

Rorke wants his chance. The one we never had. But that was a long time ago. When I still believed in Prince Charming and Happily Ever Afters.  Even ten years later, I feel a pull. And it’s not simply Rorke yanking down my panties.


Do second chances really happen?  Or is my heart simply toying with me?


***If you'd like to read an excellent excerpt from TOYING WITH HER, please click HERE


About the Author:
 
Prescott Lane is the Amazon best-selling author of STRIPPED RAW. She's got seven other books under her belt including: FIRST POSITION, PERFECTLY BROKEN, QUIET ANGEL, WRAPPED IN LACE, LAYERS OF HER, THE REASON FOR ME, and THE SEX BUCKET LIST.
She is originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, and holds a degree in sociology and a MSW from Tulane University. She married her college sweetheart, and they currently live in New Orleans with their two children and two crazy dogs. Prescott started writing at the age of five, and sold her first story about a talking turtle to her father for a quarter. She later turned to writing romance novels because there aren't enough happily ever afters in real life.




Monday, August 14, 2017

EXCERPT REVEAL for TOYING WITH HER by Prescott Lane

TOYING WITH HER
by Prescott Lane

Coming August 17, 2017

A new Contemporary Romance standalone
from Prescott Lane


No one said finding love was easy, but when you invented the world’s bestselling vibrator, it’s near impossible. Yep, that’s right. That little toy hidden in your bedside table is my brain child. It’s aptly named, Woman on Top. And you know what they say...it’s lonely at the top.

So I’m headed home to my Southern roots. It’s supposed to be an extended Summer vacation—nothing more. But Rorke Weston has other plans for me. Plans that not only involve me being on top, but also underneath him.

It’s been said, you never forget your first. For me, that’s definitely true. No night has ever lived up to the one I spent with Rorke.

He’s turned into quite a man. Tan from the Southern sun, and stubborn as the day is long. And there’s nothing sweeter than the swipe of his tongue.

Rorke wants his chance. The one we never had. But that was a long time ago. When I still believed in Prince Charming and Happily Ever Afters.  Even ten years later, I feel a pull. And it’s not simply Rorke yanking down my panties.

Do second chances really happen?  Or is my heart simply toying with me?

Excerpt:

Hammering the nail with one hard pound, I mutter, “Friends?”

That should be a cuss word, especially coming out of her full, pink lips.  I toss the hammer aside, scanning the mostly-converted barn.  Yep, I live in a barn.  Well, not any barn.  The barn where Sterling and I lost our virginity.  I know just the spot.  It’s the spot where my bed is now.

I didn’t plan it that way.  In fact, I didn’t even really think about it until she showed up in town the other day.  I came home, walked in, and realized I’ve designed this place around her.  Crazy, but true.  That woman has burned herself into the deepest parts of my soul.  Deeper than even I realized.  She was my first, a memory.  I thought it was over.  I thought we’d only ever get that one night.  She had her life, and I had mine.  I didn’t see this coming. 

This old barn sits on the edge of my parents’ property.  It sucks to be almost thirty and still living on my parents’ land.  Technically, I’m not living at home, but sometimes it feels like it.  Unfortunately, buying my own house on my teaching salary isn’t in the cards, so a few years ago, I started converting one of the old barns.

Every nail, every piece of wood in here has been touched by me.  And it’s almost done.  It’s wide open, designed that way mostly because it’s less work than putting up a bunch of walls.  The only room with any privacy is the bathroom.  I left the distressed rafters from the ceiling exposed and just refinished them.  The original sliding barn doors have been replaced with new ones.  Almost one whole wall houses my personal library.  The only thing left to finish is the kitchen.  The upper cabinets are in, but my only appliances are a refrigerator and microwave.  So any real meals I eat come from the main house — my parents’ house.  My plan is to use part of my summer vacation to finish it up.

I look over at the bed.  My subconscious must have taken over with that decision.  Sterling is etched into the fiber of this place.  Maybe that’s the reason I haven’t ever brought a woman to see this place before?  Who knows?  The subconscious is a tricky bitch.

But the memories of that day and night are so vivid.  It’s all flooding back now that she’s back.

I remember a buddy of mine had rushed me home my freshman year of college, making the two-and-a-half-hour drive from New Orleans in just under two.  But I was too late.  I wasn’t here when Levi took his last breath.  Those few days are a blur.  Everything is a blur until the moment I stood up at his funeral to speak; her green eyes were the only thing I saw, her whimpers the only ones I heard.  I hadn’t expected her to be there.  I hadn’t expected her to fly home from college to say goodbye to my brother, but she had.  And I didn’t expect her to find me at my parents’ house after the funeral.  I swear, there were hundreds of people there, and it was the loneliest day of my life.  I had to get out of there and started walking.  I’m not sure if it’s just me, but when I need to think, I tend to walk.  That day, Sterling was by my side.  We didn’t talk, roaming around the fields until we ended up at this old barn.  It was the place that Levi and I escaped to.  As little kids, we’d used it as a fort, a clubhouse.  Later, it held our bikes and four wheelers. 

I remember being embarrassed bringing Sterling inside.  It was old and filled with our junk.  The only place to even sit was an old, beat up sofa.  We made good use of it, though.

I’ve never been as unprepared for something as I was that day.  Unprepared to put my brother in the ground, unprepared to lose my virginity, unprepared to let her walk away.

I chuckle remembering exactly how unprepared I was when our naked bodies first touched.  My brain thought “condom.”  But I didn’t have one.  My dick promised it’d pull out.  But I had no idea the kind of willpower that would take.  I swear to God, I had every intention of pulling out.

I thought for sure that she’d kill me, and quickly launched into the lamest apology in the history of the universe.  Just thinking about it makes me cringe.  I was never so thankful for anything in my whole life as when she kissed me to shut me up, whispering she was on the pill. 

Some might think it’s a dick move to be banging a girl the day you bury your twin brother.  But it wasn’t like that at all.  It wasn’t cheap.  I didn’t think of it as a one-night stand, even though technically it was.  It’s impossible to explain.  It was us clinging onto life, onto each other.  Emily Brontë wrote, "Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.”  And after that night, our souls have been forever linked.

Every single second of that night is burned into my mind, my heart, my skin.

After that night, we stayed in touch for a long time — email, phone calls.  But we were thousands of miles apart.  And our paths never crossed again.  If I was at home on break, she wasn’t.  It just seemed like it wasn’t meant to be.  She is the one that got away.  We never got our chance.

Now she’s back, and she thinks we can be friends?  I spent my entire childhood and teenage years being “friends” with her.

She wants to be friends?  That’s fine.  I’ll be her friend.  But I’ll be damned if that’s all I am.


About the Author:

Prescott Lane is the Amazon best-selling author of STRIPPED RAW. She's got seven other books under her belt including: FIRST POSITION, PERFECTLY BROKEN, QUIET ANGEL, WRAPPED IN LACE, LAYERS OF HER, THE REASON FOR ME, and THE SEX BUCKET LIST.
She is originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, and holds a degree in sociology and a MSW from Tulane University. She married her college sweetheart, and they currently live in New Orleans with their two children and two crazy dogs. Prescott started writing at the age of five, and sold her first story about a talking turtle to her father for a quarter. She later turned to writing romance novels because there aren't enough happily ever afters in real life.




Friday, July 21, 2017

EXCERPT REVEAL for THE BEAUTY OF US, a Fusion novel by Kristen Proby

From New York Times bestselling author, Kristen Proby, comes a sexy, new standalone contemporary romance in her Fusion Series, THE BEAUTY OF US, releasing August 22, 2017 from William Morrow Paperbacks, in which five best friends open a hot restaurant together. THE BEAUTY OF US finds a hot shot television producer looking to feature Seduction, the friends’ trendy restaurant, in his hit TV show Best Bites TV – but he’ll have to convince the restaurant’s perky publicist that he’s interested in more than just his show’s ratings.

THE BEAUTY OF US
By Kristen Proby

Riley is over the moon at the prospect of having her restaurant, Seduction, featured on the Best Bites TV network, but the idea of having an in-house show on a regular basis is a whole different thing. Their lives would be turned upside down, and convincing Mia, her best friend and head chef of Seduction, that having cameras in her kitchen every day is a good idea is daunting. Riley knows that the show is the best thing for their beloved restaurant, and having the executive producer, Trevor, around makes Rileys pulse quicken. The chemistry between them is off the charts.

No one has ever looked at her the way he does…

Trevor Cooper is in Portland strictly on business. His intention is to talk the co-owner and publicist, Riley Gibson, into agreeing to allow his employer, Best Bites TV, to feature her restaurant on the national channel. His best friend told him about the unique restaurant, and Trevor is convinced that Seduction would be perfect for a new show. But when he walks into Riley’s office, he’s thrown for a loop. The professional, aloof woman on the phone is beautiful and funny, and Trevor can’t stop looking at her stunning face. But can he convince her that he’s interested in Riley for himself? Or is he using the undeniable pull between them to persuade her to agree to his offer?

Check out the chapter below and get to know Trevor and Riley!
Excerpt from THE BEAUTY OF US by Kristen Proby 

Chapter 2
~Trevor~
I didn’t sleep worth shit last night. I waited for a response to my e-mail from Riley for a while; I’m not exactly sure why. I just don’t like the thought of her being embarrassed.
Because she has no reason to be. She didn’t know who I was, and it was closing time. She was venting to her friends.
It’s really no big deal.
But I could see the mortification in her big blue eyes when she realized who I was, and that doesn’t sit well with me.
When no response came, and for all I know she hasn’t even read the e-mail yet, I sat down for a game on the PS4. I don’t travel anywhere without it. Some people read to unwind. Some go to the gym, and there are times I do the same. But to truly relax, I enjoy gaming. I have since I was a kid.
So I settled in the apartment the network has rented for me this month and played online with my friends, talking about our days and shooting the enemy.
We played well past midnight, and I usually would have gone right to bed afterward, but my mind was still turning, making falling asleep impossible. The restaurant is better than I imagined through my research on their website and customer reviews. It’s visually stunning, the food is fantastic, and they’ve hit the mark on the sexy factor.
But added to that, the five women who own the place are all beautiful, smart, and will make for great TV. Viewers will eat this show up, pun intended.
I lean over the sink and wash my face, not bothering to shave today, and as I dry off, I reach for my phone.
I have several new e-mails.
The most recent is from Riley Gibson.
Trevor,
Thank you for your kind email. I apologize again for the conversation last night. I would like to promise that we don’t always talk like that at work, but that would be a lie. At least we keep it to closing time over a glass of wine.
Enjoy Portland,
Riley
I grin and sling the towel over my bare shoulders. Riley isn’t what I had pictured in my head before I got here. I knew that she was pretty because their photos are on their website, but she’s much prettier in person.
And animated.
Working with her will be fun.
And a test to my libido. Because Riley is fucking sexy. I’ve never mixed business and sex before, and I don’t plan to start now, but keeping my hands off her will be a test of wills.
And that too should be fun.
After my run this morning, I stopped by a bagel place to eat and read a newspaper, came back to the apartment for a shower, and I think I’ll go to Seduction for lunch. I hadn’t planned to go back there until my meeting with Riley tomorrow, but I also haven’t had lunch there yet.
I dress quickly in jeans and a red T-shirt and walk the six or so blocks to the restaurant.
They’ve just opened, so they’re not busy yet. The atmosphere is calm, the lighting a bit brighter than last night, making it a fun spot to meet with colleagues or friends for lunch.
I’m seated on the far side of the restaurant, where it meets the bar, and I can see Riley and the other women sitting around a high table, talking.
Loud enough for me to hear.
“So, he’ll be here tomorrow. Filming doesn’t start for another week, unless the timetable has been moved up,” Riley says, studying her iPad and checking things off a list. “It would be great if we could watch our language.”
“Right,” Mia says, rolling her eyes. “Because that’s gonna happen.”
“Just watch the F-bombs then,” Riley says with a grin. “And I’ll do my best not to vent to him about my horrible dating experiences. Not that I’ll be having any more of those.”
“I wish I’d been here for that,” Addie says with a smile. “It’s hilarious.”
“No, it’s not,” Riley says, but smiles and covers her lips with her fingers. “Okay, it’s a little funny. I’ll be working from home today.”
“Why?” The blonde speaking, I presume Cami, asks.
“Because I have a roofer coming today,” Riley says. “But if you need me, just call. I can come back after he leaves.”
“Go.” Mia waves her off. “We’ve got this.”
The girls all stand, about to go their own ways to get their day started. They’re clearly good friends, which will come across well on film.
Riley walks out of the bar and glances up, spotting me.
“Hi.” I offer her a smile and motion for her to join me. She sits, sets her iPad aside, and squares her shoulders.
I love a woman with grit.
“Why are you here?” she asks.
“I’m having lunch,” I reply, and gesture to the salad sitting in front of me. “It’s delicious. Adding the brussels sprouts is smart.”
“I’ll pass that along to Mia,” she says, and then laughs. “I guess you heard the part where I asked the girls to not swear.”
“I did,” I reply, and patiently butter a piece of warm bread. “Don’t worry about that stuff. They’re adults.”
“With potty mouths,” she says.
“And we can bleep stuff out, or ask them to rephrase. You’ve already got the gig, Riley. I wouldn’t be here otherwise. This isn’t an audition.”
“I know.” She sighs and reaches over to take a piece of my bread, surprising and delighting me. “I just want things to go smoothly.”
“Perhaps you should order lunch too.”
“I don’t have time,” she says, and then her blue eyes widen as she realizes what she just did. “I’m so sorry. I eat when I’m stressed out, and I didn’t—”
“No.” I hold my hand up to stop her. “It’s fine. I like that you’re relaxed with me. I think you need to relax more often.”
“What are you, my life coach now?”
“If you like. Did you cancel those dating sites like I suggested?”
She bites her lip and looks to the side, then nods. “I did.”
“Good.” I take a bite of salad and nod. “Are you sure you don’t want some food?”
“I rarely have time to eat,” Riley says, and checks the time on her phone. “In fact, I should go. I have to meet the roofer at my house.”
“What’s wrong with your roof?”
“It’s old,” she says with a shrug. “That’s what happens when you buy an old house. I’m fixing it up a little at a time.”
I nod, and find that I don’t want her to go quite yet. I want to talk more, to learn more about her.
“Why don’t you come to my apartment tonight and I’ll cook you dinner?”
She pauses and stares at me for a moment. “Why?”
I laugh and set my fork down. “Because I asked you to. We’re going to be working closely over the next few weeks, we might as well get to know each other a little better. Also, we can discuss my new duties as your life coach.”
“Well.” Her lips twitch as she thinks it over for a moment, a myriad of emotions moving across her beautiful face, and finally she says, “Okay. Do you mind texting me the address and the time?”
“Not at all,” I reply, and immediately pass her my phone. “Plug in your number and I’ll text you this afternoon.”
She complies, passes it back, and smiles. “Okay, see you later.”
And with that, she’s off. Her ass swaying enticingly in her tight skirt, calves flexing from the height of her heels, and the food I’m currently chewing immediately tastes like cardboard.
Jesus.
And I just voluntarily offered to spend time with her. Alone.
I’m a fucking glutton for punishment.

“I’m starving,” Riley immediately says as I open the door. She’s in jeans and a well-loved University of Oregon sweatshirt, her hair is pulled up in a ponytail, and she looks like she could be a co-ed herself. “I forgot to eat today.”
“Does that happen every day?” I ask as I gesture for her to come inside and close the door behind her.
“Most days,” she admits. “Is this one of those bad choices that you’re gonna coach me through?”
“Yes,” I reply, and lead her into the kitchen. “You have to eat.”
“I know, I just get focused on other things, and the next thing I know, the day is gone and I’m starving.” She passes me two bottles of wine. “I didn’t know what we were having, so I brought red and white.”
“Thanks.” I grin and set them both on the counter. “I made salmon and asparagus with baby red potatoes. What goes best with that?”
Her eyes light up. “The white. Holy shit, are you a chef yourself?”
“I went to culinary school,” I reply, and squeeze some lemon on the salmon before plating it. “But I discovered I was better at a desk job.”
“That’s unusual,” she says, her head tilted to the side as she listens. “Most people fight to get out of a desk job.”
“Not me. I have a ton of respect for Mia, because being a chef isn’t easy, and pleasing people sucks.”
“True.” Riley nods. “She doesn’t get many plates sent back to her, but there are a few. Can I pour you a glass?”
“No thanks,” I reply, and reach in the fridge for a bottle of water. “I don’t drink alcohol.”
“Oh.” She frowns. “I’m sorry. I can drink water too.”
“It’s fine,” I reply, and pat her shoulder. “I don’t mind if you drink. I just don’t.”
“But last night, you were drinking Jack and Coke.”
“Nope, just Coke.”
She sits at the table, still frowning. “I’m sorry.”
“There’s nothing to be sorry for.” I set our plates down. “I’ve been sober for ten years. I’m not the kind of alcoholic who can’t be around others having a drink. It was never that bad for me. I’m just a better person if I don’t drink.”
“Good for you for knowing that,” she says, holding her glass out to clink against my water. “This looks delicious.”
“You sound surprised.”
“I expected pizza or Chinese takeout,” she says. “Honestly, that’s probably what you would have gotten from me. I’m also surprised that you’re not staying in a hotel.”
“I’m here long enough that the network sprung for the apartment. They usually do when I’m somewhere longer than a week or so.”
“You must travel a lot for this job,” she says, eating her food like a starving child. I don’t know if she even tastes it, she’s eating so fast.
“I travel often,” I reply, and grin when she takes the last bite. “Are you going to lick the plate?”
“Maybe,” she says with a grin. “I’m not even embarrassed that I ate that so fast. It was delicious.”
“I’m glad you liked it. There’s more.”
“No, I’m good,” she says, and reaches in her bag, pulling out a pad of paper and a pen. “You can eat while I interview you.”
“For what?”
“For the position of life coach,” she says with a sassy grin. I want to kiss that grin right off her face, but instead I take a bite of potato and gesture for her to begin.
“Okay, first question: What qualifications do you have that make you a good fit for this position?”
“Well, I have a few years on you, so I would say wisdom with age.”
She tilts her head to the side, the way she does when she’s turning something over in her head. “You can’t be that much older than me.”
“I’m thirty-seven.”
“Seven years,” she says, rolling her eyes.
“A lot can happen in seven years,” I reply, and sip my water.
“Okay, I’ll give you that.” She checks something off on her paper.
“Did you really write down questions?”
“Of course. I’m the queen of lists and the roofer was at my house forever.” She bites her lip as she looks at her list. “How many women have you life-coached in the past?”
“Well, I didn’t have an official job title, but I have two younger sisters, and an ex-wife, so I would say three.”
“But the wife is an ex, so maybe that did go well?” Riley asks. “And are your sisters productive members of society?”
“As opposed to being in jail?” I ask, laughing. “You’re hilarious, Riley.”
“You didn’t answer the question.”
“My sisters are great. The older one is married, a stay-at-home mom with two kids, and the younger one is a waitress.”
“But the ex-wife thing didn’t work out.”
“She’s not a mess, we just both decided that she shouldn’t be my wife anymore.”
“Why?”
I sit back in my chair and wipe my mouth on my napkin. “Because she thought it was a good idea to have sex with other men.”
Her eyebrows climb on her forehead and she blinks twice. “That’s a good reason.”
“I thought so.”
“Okay, next question.” She checks something on her paper and looks up at me with a smile. “How do you intend to be compensated for your work?”
“I’m working pro bono,” I reply with a wink.
“Why?”
“Because I’m going to be here anyway, and why not.” I shrug and finish the food on my plate. “What else do you want to know?”
“Is my coming to a virtual stranger’s apartment by myself one of the bad decisions you should have coached me on?”
I smile and set my plate aside so I can lean on the table. “Did the girls tell you that coming here by yourself was a bad idea?”
“I only talked to Cami and she thought I should come. Plus, I have a concealed carry, so I feel pretty confident that I’m safe.”
I raise a brow and cross my arms over my chest. “You carry a gun with you?”
“Hell to the yes,” she replies, and offers me a sweet smile. “I’ve been meeting strange men on the Internet. You bet your ass I’ve been armed.”
“Good idea,” I reply with a nod. “There are a lot of crazies out there.”
“Yes. But I think that if you’re gonna meet a crazy, it could be anywhere. Online, in a bar, at the gas station. They’re everywhere.”
“That’s true too,” I reply, and nod. “Well, I’m glad you’re being cautious.”
“I’m nobody’s victim,” she says, as casually as if she’s telling me her shoe size.
That’s fucking sexy.
“Do you have any other questions?”
“Not really,” she says, and shrugs. “I didn’t really write anything down. But it was fun to interrogate you a bit.”
“Now I have questions,” I reply, and smile when she cocks her head and purses her lips. “Do you really think you need a life coach?”
“No, I have my shit together,” she says with a grin.
“Why were you really on all of those sites?”
She shrugs. “Because it’s not easy meeting people. And sometimes a girl wants to go out on a date.”
“You don’t need me,” I reply, and smile. “But I’ll be around for a while, just in case.”
“Just in case I slip and fall back into the online dating?”
“That, or if you just want to have dinner, or chat. And I think we should watch a marathon of Star Wars. Your lack of knowledge is cause for concern.”
“It’s kind of a guy thing,” she says.
“I know many women who like Star Wars.”
“Well, I would watch one or two.”
“You need to see them all to understand what’s happening.”
“That’s a lot of hours of my life that I’ll never get back,” she says with a frown. “Aren’t there CliffsNotes somewhere? A speedy way to get caught up?”
“No,” I reply, and fist my hands in my lap so I don’t reach out and tuck her hair behind her ear.
Or yank her against me so I can kiss the fuck out of her.
“Are you okay?” she asks.
“Are you always this observant?”
“I’m an overthinker,” she says. “So yeah, I’m an observer.”
“I’ve been labeled an overthinker too,” I say with a grin.
“Would you say it’s an accurate assessment?”
“Oh yeah,” I say with a nod, and stand to clear our plates away. She stands to help. “I’ve got this.”
“No way, you cooked, so I’ll help clean.”
She walks ahead of me, her empty glass in one hand and her plate in the other. “Do you use the dishwasher, or do you wash by hand?”
“There are people who still wash by hand?”
“I’ve heard of them, but I’ve never seen them in the wild,” she says, and smiles up at me when I join her. “So I guess that means we use the dishwasher?”
“Yes.” She rinses and I load, and a few short minutes later, we’re done.
“Well, I suppose I should go,” she says, and checks the time on her phone. “Oh, Cami texted. I guess I should reply so she doesn’t think you killed me after the entrée.”
She smirks and types on her phone, then turns it off and looks up at me.
“Thanks for dinner.”
“You’re welcome.”
“I’ll see you tomorrow morning.”
Unfortunately, it won’t be in my bed.
“You will.”
“Okay.” She gathers her bag, notepad and pen, and walks to the door. “Sleep well tonight.”
I grin and congratulate myself for not dragging my fingertips down her cheek.
You sleep well tonight, Riley.”
“Okay. Bye.”
She leaves and I close the door, letting out a slow breath. Jesus, she’s sexy and funny and smart as fuck.
And I’m not going to touch her while I’m here.
How the fuck am I going to do that?



About the Author:
 
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.

Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.




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