Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Leah Godfrey has almost everything she could ask for—
She’s got an interior design business with an A-list clientele, a weekly spot on a national morning TV show, and a great daughter—but she doesn’t have a date for her twentieth high school reunion. It wouldn’t be a big deal, but her ex-husband was her high school sweetheart, and now he’s married to the slut Leah caught him with in bed. She won’t let the biggest failure of her life overshadow her success.
When her best friend suggests she hire a date, Leah thinks the idea is scandalous. But for one weekend, she wants to forget her mistakes and pretend she has everything her ex took away from her.
Jagger Holiday makes women’s fantasies come true—
But working as a male escort leaves him feeling empty. He turns to photography to fill the void. When Jagger gets a call from a lonely single mom who needs the same thing he does, he wants more. He wants her.
Leah and Jagger have no problem convincing everyone at the reunion they’re together. She should’ve known better than to think there’d be no strings attached.
After all, he’s a professional.
Kristen Strassel writes books about rock stars and vampires. After all, they tell you to write what you know. She is a passionate music fan who also loves football games and diner food. Kristen works as a makeup artist on film and TV shows when she's not writing, and loves being behind the scenes. A former resident of Las Vegas, Kristen now lives in the Boston area.
Title: Nobody's Fool
Series: Willow Park #2
Author: Sarah Hegger
Publisher: Kensington Publishing
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: August 25, 2015
In Sarah Hegger's latest Willow Park Romance, long-held crushes and past frenemies reunite--and wonder if there's ever a second chance to make a good first impression. . .
Holly Partridge had no plans to return to Willow Park, Illinois, until her troubled younger sister Portia fled her home and aimed herself straight at Holly's high school nemesis--too-gorgeous-to-be-true Josh Hunter. Riding a manic bipolar high, Portia's only a danger to herself, but Holly needs to find her before she crashes. That means asking Josh for help.
The ultimate love 'em and leave 'em lothario, Josh was never good for anything but a broken heart. But now he's lending a hand when Holly needs it most--and revealing surprising generosity and compassion. Has Josh shed his bad boy ways? Or is Holly suddenly grown up enough to acknowledge her own mistakes? Trusting Josh could be a disaster--or the first step in banishing the past to make way for a future happier than Holly ever imagined. . .
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Coming January 2016
Josh winced around a mouthful of lukewarm beer. Time to go. He’d been nursing this beer for the last hour and his new book on Sir Isaac Newton was calling him. Age or boredom—who the hell knew?
He’d only come here for a quiet beer to unwind from his day. Granted, this particular bar was a shitty choice, but it was close to his condo, the beer was cold, and the bartender friendly.
A woman pushed through two slick broker types and fumbled a cell phone out of a pair of baggy GAP jeans. Her burgundy University of Western Ontario sweatshirt sneered like a rescue pound mongrel at the expensive Armanis flanking it.
Her brow puckered into a vicious frown.
She could be lost, or in disguise, but she did have the whole I-have-no-idea-exactly-how-hot-I-am thing going for her. A light lurking under a bushel, a diamond in the rough, a girl with an air of do me, bad boy she seemed oblivious to.
Not so clueless was every red-blooded male in her vicinity. More than one covert eye went her way.
Dark eyes, gleaming with intelligence and ringed by thick lashes, met his gaze.
A promising start—if he was looking for a pickup, which he wasn’t—but still…There was something familiar about this girl.
Diminutive and with her face devoid of makeup, she could have passed for fourteen. The air of determination marked her as older, however. Closer to his age, which meant old enough to drink, old enough to drive, and old enough for all sorts of interesting games.
Ten years ago, five even, he’d have cruised right over and worked his smolder. He knew better now.
The woman ducked her head and took a call. A mane of long wavy hair obscured her face.
The sort of hair a man liked to curl his fingers in.
Her gaze flickered up and over him. Angry eyes under a pair of lowered brows, giving him the eye so evil he almost looked over his shoulder for the true beneficiary.
Women, as a rule, didn’t look at him that way. Women dressed like bag ladies with … pencils? No kidding. It was definitely a couple of standard number twos holding her hair tightly against her head. Women like her almost never gave him the hairy eyeball.
His feelings might be a bruised.
Nope. Feelings intact but ego definitely grazed. She kept her hostile glare going. Those things could smoke a hole right through him.
Maybe she was gay. Josh winced behind his beer, glad he wasn’t voicing any of this out loud. He would sound like an egotistical prick. Okay, women didn’t often turn him down, but it happened. Sometimes.
Her glance shifted away. She was aware of him and doing her best not to show it.
He knew her. It hit him out of the blue and he stopped to think. She had the sort of face it was hard to forget. Not pretty, exactly, more compelling, and a blank canvas for every thought running through her head.
And right now she was not aiming happy thoughts in his direction.
She hunched over her phone to hear better.
The love ’em and leave ’em style of his early twenties hadn’t left many warm and fuzzy feelings behind him. Still, he came up blank. He was reasonably sure she wasn’t one of the bodies littering his youth, but this lady did not like him.
“Hey, Jo-osh?” His name was singsonged at him.
And speaking of his youth, right on cue. The timing nearly made him bust out laughing.
His mystery lady stuck her cute nose in the air. The amber glow from the lighted bar counter turned her skin to butter cream and picked out the tiniest golden freckles across her upturned nose,
The disdain rolled across the distance between them in waves.
“Hey, Josh, like, hello.” A pair of breasts intruded into his line of sight, right beneath his nose. He faced the owner of the pair.
There were three of them and all looking at him expectantly.
Ah, shit, here we go.
Over the newcomers’ shoulders the mystery lady shook her head in disgust. Her eyes raked over him and the posse in front of him and rolled.
Now, that was not entirely fair. He might even be getting a little pissed at her and her attitude. Girls like the trio facing him were knee deep in trendy Chicago bars, which this one happened to be. They were voracious hunters and he’d only been standing here minding his own business. She needn’t act like he’d encouraged them.
In the meanwhile, Bambi, Barbie, and Bubbles—or whatever—posed and primped in front of him. Their cheeks pink with a combination of alcohol and excitement.
His heart sank. He could almost script what was coming. It was his own damn fault, ultimately, but there had to come a point when the ghosts of the past went toward the fucking light or something.
“So, like, we were wondering…” Bambi/Barbie/Bubbles pursed her frosted mouth at him and stuck out her breasts.
As if he could have missed them the first time around.
Two and three were providing the flanking action, mirroring her movements and throwing in some freestyle hair tossing.
“Hi, girls.” His skin prickled. Was he really going to have to do this now? Mystery lady with the judgmental eyes was going to get her money’s worth tonight.
Born British and raised in South Africa, Sarah Hegger suffers from an incurable case of wanderlust. Her match? A hot Canadian engineer, whose marriage proposal she accepted six short weeks after they first met. Together they’ve made homes in seven different cities across three different continents (and back again once or twice). If only it made her multilingual, but the best she can manage is idiosyncratic English, fluent Afrikaans, conversant Russian, pigeon Portuguese, even worse Zulu and enough French to get herself into trouble.
Mimicking her globe trotting adventures, Sarah’s career path began as a gainfully employed actress, drifted into public relations, settled a moment in advertising, and eventually took root in the fertile soil of her first love, writing. She also moonlights as a wife and mother.
She currently lives in Littleton, Colorado, with her teenage daughters, two Golden Retrievers and aforementioned husband. Part footloose buccaneer, part quixotic observer of life, Sarah’s restless heart is most content when reading or writing books.
She loves to hear from readers and you can find her at any of the places below.
There were three men in this world I thought I could trust and two of them had just betrayed me. Everything I'd thought I'd known about my life, about the people I loved, all of it was gone. I found myself staring at a pack of lies with no idea just how deep they went.
When twenty-six year-old Shae Lockwood is widowed after a horrible accident, she thinks that things can't get any worse. The one person who is there for her through it all is her late husband's best friend, Jasper Whitehall. Kind and compassionate, Jasper is exactly what she needs...until she discovers that Jasper is hiding more than one dark secret.
Don't miss the second installment from best-selling author M.S. Parker's erotic Wicked suspense series.
M.S. Parker is a USA Today Bestselling author and the author of the Erotic Romance series, Club Privè and Chasing Perfection.
Living in Southern California, she enjoys sitting by the pool with her laptop writing on her next spicy romance.
Growing up all she wanted to be was a dancer, actor or author. So far only the latter has come true but M.S. Parker hasn't retired her dancing shoes just yet. She is still waiting for the call for her to appear on Dancing With The Stars.
When M. S. isn't writing, she can usually be found reading- oops, scratch that! She is always writing.
Book Title: I Had Him (A Daughter's Story)
Author: RC Woods
Genre: Werewolf Suspense/Romance
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions
I never knew my mother.
Only a baby when she died, I grew up in the Edgewoods Pack, surrounded by a loving family, and raised by the man they called Jeremy. He wasn't my real father, but I was told he loved my mother so much that when she died, it nearly destroyed him. He said I was the only reason he didn't die too.
The man who I called Daddy was my hero, my playmate, my confidant, and my protector. He was my entire world. My love for him surpassed the number of stars in the universe and exceeded the billions of raindrops in a thousand thunderstorms. I couldn't imagine my life being any different. I never needed a mother...I had him.
I thought there was nothing in the world he would ever allow to separate us.
But not me.
One of my earliest childhood memories consists of a black granite stone beneath a lone oak, the picture of a howling wolf carved deeply into the smooth face of the monument. Kneeling in front, I would trail my fingers across the letters etched into its smooth cool surface, and although I couldn't yet read, I knew what the letters spelled.
He told me.
I have no memories of my mother, but he sometimes tells me I look like her. I've seen pictures in our house and often wondered how he could think so. Her hair was brown while mine is coal black. She had the most startling green eyes I've ever seen. Mine are blue.
But to say my childhood without a mother wasn't happy would be a far cry from the truth. My days were filled playing dress up and having tea parties with my dolls just like any other little girl. I caught fireflies at dusk, keeping them in a jar beside my bed at night and then setting them free at daybreak. I played hide-and- seek in the dark shadows beneath the dusk to dawn light and searched for earthworms beneath rocks and logs for fishing. I had snowball fights and built forts in the woods, never realizing for a moment that I was missing a mother.
I had him.
He took care of me, spending every moment doing anything my young child's brain could create and imagine. From a young age, I knew he wasn't my father, but it didn't matter. It didn't matter our closeness wasn't forged from the ties of blood, there was no one I could have loved more. The Alpha of our pack, he was strong and intimidating, but I rarely saw that side of him. He was caring and fatherly, disciplining me when I needed it, but never failing to remind me how much he loved me.
The pack called him Jeremy.
I called him Dad.
RC Woods is a freelance writer who lives in central Missouri. Author of her first full length novel series, What Lies Beneath-The Brothers Series, she has also written various unpublished memoirs and poems. Together, her love of the natural world, individualistic outlook on life, and passion for writing, lend a hand in creating unique stories and true to life reflections.
From a young age, RC Woods was blessed with the love of reading. Able to immerse her imagination within the pages of a book for hours, this same love prompted her to begin the journey of writing her own novels.
"I love the supernatural and paranormal romance/suspense genres. There are no limitations to the possibilities of the imagination."
Self-published author of three books in the set, What Lies Beneath-The Brothers Series, Book 1- Shane's Story, Book 2 - Wrong Side of Heaven, and Book 3 -Ties That Bind, she is currently working on a stand-alone story based on one of the characters in the final book of the series, "I Had Him - A Daughter's Story".
Title: Blurred Lines
Author: Lauren Layne
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Date: August 25, 2015
In a novel that’s perfect for fans of Abbi Glines and Jessica Sorensen, USA Today bestselling author Lauren Layne delivers a sexy take on the timeless question: Can a guy and a girl really be “just friends”?
When Parker Blanton meets Ben Olsen during her freshman year of college, the connection is immediate—and platonic. Six years later, they’re still best friends, sharing an apartment in Portland’s trendy Northwest District as they happily settle into adult life. But when Parker’s boyfriend dumps her out of the blue, she starts to wonder about Ben’s no-strings-attached approach to dating. The trouble is, even with Ben as her wingman, Parker can’t seem to get the hang of casual sex—until she tries it with him.
The arrangement works perfectly . . . at first. The sex is mind-blowing, and their friendship remains as solid as ever, without any of the usual messy romantic entanglements. But when Parker’s ex decides he wants her back, Ben is shocked by a fierce stab of possessiveness. And when Ben starts seeing a girl from work, Parker finds herself plagued by unfamiliar jealousy. With their friendship on the rocks for the first time, Parker and Ben face an alarming truth: Maybe they can’t go back. And maybe, deep down, they never want to.
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My sophomore year of high school, I had a short-lived friendship with this girl named Korie Hamilton.
She was nice enough.
A little too much purple eyeliner, a few too many likes sprinkled throughout her constant chatter, but we had every class together our first semester, so we kind of became friends by default.
Anyway, Korie was forever yammering on and on about how her best friend on the entire planet was Stephen Daniels, a boy she’d known for all of four weeks before promoting him to BFF status.
Apparently it was, like, ohmigod, like, the best thing ever to have a guy she could talk to without complicating things with romantic entanglements.
Real best friends can generally go more than a couple hours without mentioning each other’s name, but Korie found a way to fit Stephen’s name into every other sentence.
Just friends my ass.
I guess technically they were platonic for a while. Stephen had a girlfriend named Libby Tittles, or something unfortunate like that, and Korie had this on-again-off-again thing with her junior high boyfriend.
But anyone who’s ever seen a movie, or watched TV, or just had basic awareness of human interaction saw exactly where Korie and Stephen were heading: Humpville.
Even though Korie swore up and down that she didn’t like him like that, both of their significant others were long gone by Thanksgiving of sophomore year.
By Christmas vacation, Korie wasn’t uttering quite so many likes. Why? Because Stephen’s tongue was in her mouth before school, after school, and every freaking weekend.
But we all know how this ends, right? Just a few short months later, not only were Korie and Stephen no longer dating, they sure as hell weren’t best friends.
Their short-lived romance and ensuing breakup barely even registered a blip on the gossip chain, but I’d like to think it taught some of us high school girls a valuable lesson:
Guys and girls can’t be just friends. Or not best friends, anyway.
Shit gets too complicated.
But let’s fast-forward a few years, shall we?
I’m now twenty-four, and I have a public service announcement to make: I was wrong.
Guys and girls really can be best friends.
It is possible to have a platonic relationship with a guy where there are no romantic inklings, no sexual fantasies, and no naïve proclamations of I don’t like him like that in a torturous attempt to hide an agonizing unrequited love.
How do I know this? How do I know that a guy and a girl can be best friends without romantic entanglements?
Well, let’s see, I’ve been on the female end of one such platonic relationship for six years now.
Ben Olsen and I met the summer before our first year at University of Oregon during freshman orientation. We were assigned to the same group in one of those terrible ice-breaking activities where you have to put a sticky note on your head and guess what kind of safari animal you are, or something, and we just . . .
I don’t know why we clicked in the Hey, you’re cool but I have no interest in boning you kind of way, but we did.
Maybe it was because I was in stupid insta-love with another guy in our group. Or maybe because my ovaries were hyperaware that Ben’s ridiculous good looks would lead to heartbreak. But whatever the reason, we did the implausible.
We became best friends.
And, yes, every single one of my female friends has given me the exact same warnings I gave Korie Hamilton way back when: It won’t work.
My friends are split down the middle on how it will actually go down, but they’re all convinced that it will go down.
Half think that Ben and I are soulmates who are just biding our time until marriage and babies.
The other half think that we’re going to have too much to drink one night, have awful sex, and never speak again.
Ben and I proved them wrong when freshman year ended and our friendship was still intact. Sophomore year? Repeat.
Junior year, we really upped our game. Not only were we closer than ever, but we became roommates. It happened sort of by accident when one of his housemates backed out at the last minute, and I belatedly realized I couldn’t bear one more year of dorm food, so I moved in. And it worked. So we did it again senior year.
Here we are, two years after graduation, still living together, although we’ve upgraded from crappy off-campus housing in Eugene to a slightly less crappy two-bedroom house in the Northwest neighborhood of Portland.
And yes. Still platonic as ever, with not so much as a hint of change in the air. I’m crazy in love with Lance Myers, my boyfriend of five years, and Ben . . .
Well, Ben’s on a rather awe-inspiring mission to seduce the entire female population in western Oregon.
Lauren Layne is the USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance.
Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. In 2011, she and her husband moved from Seattle to New York City, where Lauren decided to pursue a full-time writing career. It took six months to get her first book deal (despite ardent assurances to her husband that it would only take three). Since then, Lauren's gone on to publish ten books, including the bestselling Stiletto series, with several more on the way in 2015.
Lauren currently lives in Chicago with her husband and spoiled Pomeranian. When not writing, you'll find her at happy hour, running at a doggedly slow pace, or trying to straighten her naturally curly hair.