Review Post: Misadventures of a City Girl (Misadventures #1) by Meredith Wild & Chelle Bliss

Check out the Misadventures Series here: http://www.misadventures.com/
Book:  Misadventures of a City Girl
Authors: Meredith Wild & Chelle Bliss
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Fresh off a divorce from a Hollywood hotshot, Madison Atwood needs an escape. With the paparazzi fresh on her heels and her love life splashed on every tabloid, she runs away to a swanky retreat in Northern California. Avalon Springs is the mountainside haven she needs to find herself again.

Luke Dawson lives off the grid, preferring solitude to society. When he finds a beautiful woman soaking in the hot springs on his property, he can’t stop himself from watching her. She captures his attention, but she’s just a city girl—a beautiful distraction disturbing the peace he’s settled here to find.

When Madison discovers Luke’s secluded cabin, he can’t turn her away again. They make no promises. Madison needs to feel wanted again, and Luke misses the touch of a woman. But when mother nature has other plans, they’re forced to spend more than a night of passion together. Can Luke say goodbye to the only woman who’s made him feel anything in years, and can Madison leave behind the man who brought her back to life?

Amazon       Amazon UK      iBooks     Barnes&Noble      KoboAudio

 *****5 All-Consuming Stars*****

 If there is one thing I know for sure in life it’s that there is nothing better than when two of your favorite authors team up to write a book together. Meredith Wild and Chelle Bliss never fail to deliver a story that is exceptionally written, with the perfect amount of steam, fire, and romantic connection. There stories never disappoint, and the same could be said for everything I got while reading Misadventures of a City Girl.

I have loved so many books by both of these author’s, so when I found out they would be writing a novella together I was elated. Both of these authors have always delivered all-consuming reading experiences with their love stories, and Misadventures of a City Girl was no different. This book sent me and my heart into the best kind of tizzy. It made me blush and melt and just love every moment that these characters were sharing together.

From start to finish this book consumed me to the point that I could not put it down, and it gave me the perfect quick read that had it all.

What I loved about this book, besides the exceptional writing and storytelling of these authors, was getting to be in Luke and Madison’s heads. I loved those two something fierce. I loved that they were two seemingly opposite characters who had one helluva fiery connection. I loved that they pushed each other’s buttons in the best way. I loved that they just couldn’t fight what they were feeling, no matter how hard either of them might have tried. I loved that they took chances, I loved that they felt so real and genuine, I loved that I felt connected to them so truly through every word, and in the end I loved that this story gave me them. It gave me them at their best, their worst, and every high and low in between, and that is just part of what made me love them and their story so much.

Misadventures of a City Girl follows Luke and Madison through their whirlwind romance, when a good ole country boy with a past that keeps him hidden, meets the city girl who will keep him on his toes. She has no idea what’s she’s doing in the middle of nowhere, and he wants nothing to do with the outside world, but when these two are together it’s pure unadulterated fire. What those two share will melt your heart…among other things, and will have you loving every bit you get of their story as they try to figure out what in the world they’re doing with one another.

From start to finish this book did not disappoint. It made me laugh, it had me loving the connection I felt between these two, it gave both of these characters’ distinctive personalities that made me love them even more, and through it all it gave me the best kind of love story. This quick and fulfilling read was all kinds of phenomenal, and I truly can’t say enough good things about it!

This book is perfect for you if you are looking for a quick read that will satisfy everything you want and need in a book! You will love Luke and Madison to pieces, and you will love getting to fall right along with them as this story unfolds. Chelle Bliss and Meredith Wild brought out their A game for this novella, and I for one was impressed by every fantastic word they created within the pages of this book!

This novella will show you all the juicy details of what happens when a country boy falls for a city girl, and every pulse pounding and blushworthy moment in between will have you loving every bit of what you’re reading! Trust me. Luke and Madison do not disappoint. One little bit.

 

Meet the Authors


Meredith Wild is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of romance. Living on Florida’s Gulf Coast with her husband and three children, she refers to herself as a techie, whiskey-appreciator, and hopeless romantic. She has been featured on CBS This Morning, The Today Show, the New York TimesThe Hollywood ReporterPublishers Weekly, and The Examiner. When she isn’t living in the fantasy world of her characters, she can usually be found at:

USA Today bestselling author Chelle Bliss currently lives in a small town near the Gulf of Mexico. She’s a full-time writer, time-waster extraordinaire, social media addict, and coffee fiend. She’s written over ten books and has two series available. She loves spending her free time with her boyfriend, 2 cats, and her hamster.  Before becoming a writer, Chelle taught high school history for over ten years. She holds a master’s degree in Instructional Technology and a bachelor’s in History. Although history is her first love, writing has become her dream job and she can’t imagine doing anything else.


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Review Post: I Want (Enamorado #2) by Ella Fox

Title: I Want
Series: Enamorado #2
Author: Ella Fox
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 8, 2017

 

Blurb
Billionaire
businessman Alejandro Cruz detests the dating process and is perfectly content
to stay single. But that all changes the moment the quirky house sitter from
next door falls into his arms, and his immediate instinct is to hold on tight
and never let go. California girl Kaya Porter has a “just say no”
approach to dating. No matter how sexy and irresistible Alejandro is, she vows
not to fall for him. Alejandro has other plans. This sexy Spaniard knows what
he wants, and there’s nothing he won’t do to make Kaya realize that they belong
together. Will Alejandro get the girl or will he be left wanting more than Kaya
is willing to give?
I Want is book two
of the Enamorado (In Love) series. Each book will feature one of the Cruz
brothers and can be read as a standalone.

Purchase Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited

 *****5 All-Feeling Love Stars*****

There is a reason Ella Fox continues to be one of my all-time favorite authors, and every single amazing word of I Want proved that over and over again. Every book she writes, every story she gives me, and all of the amazing and dynamic characters she creates continue to deliver unforgettable reading experiences that I can’t get enough of! I look forward to reading her books so much, and I can’t say enough how much I have been excited to get more of this series. I LOVE this series. So much. I lo There is a reason Ella Fox continues to be one of my all-time favorite authors, and every single amazing word of I Want proved that over and over again. Every book she writes, every story she gives me, and all of the amazing and dynamic characters she creates continue to deliver unforgettable reading experiences that I can’t get enough of! I look forward to reading her books so much, and I can’t say enough how much I have been excited to get more of this series. I LOVE this series. So much. I love the way its characters love, I love the way the feels and the romance and so much heart are bursting from this series’ pages, and I love how good it feels to read this series.

Ella Fox delivers it all in I Want. A fulfilling love story that melted my heart into a puddle of the best emotion. A story that made me believe in the power of falling in love. A story that allowed me to fall right along with these characters. A story that felt good, felt right, and felt special to experience. Every word of this book, every turn of the page, and every moment I got to experience with Alejandro and Kaya seared my heart to theirs, invested me in their journey of love, and had me falling right along with them. Told through Ella Fox’s exceptional writing, I Want is a story that will give you heart the best level of feels, will have you knowing the power and amazingness of finding that one person who just fits, and that will have you rooting like crazy for everything that Alejandro and Kaya share.

I Want is the second book in the Enamorado Series, which is quickly becoming my most anticipated and loved series. I love this series. I love the family of characters it brings to life. I love how good it feels to read, and I love how each book in it wraps you up in a love story that is unique, gratifying, meaningful, sweet, romantic, and the perfect blend of fantasy and reality. Each book in this series can be read as a standalone, but I do recommend reading them all because they’re all so so good! And trust me, once you meet the characters of this series, you will want more of them and you will never want to let them go. Trust me, that’s exactly how I feel as I sit here writing this review, and I for one can’t wait to get my hands on the next book as this series continues.

The start of this book finds Alejandro and Kaya both done with relationships. He’s had the worst kind of luck with women and she’s vowed to not get serious until she’s 25. They both know what they want and they’re sticking to their guns because love isn’t for them right now…that is until they meet one another and find themselves coming up with more and more excuses to see one another. The spark seriously flies between these two, and soon they both find themselves spending more time together than they are apart. I Want follows Alejandro and Kaya as they fall, as they see what could be, and as they see what might happen if they embrace the world of feeling they begin to share. What starts off as a crazy spark soon becomes so much more in this book, and I can’t say enough how phenomenal that was to experience.

What I loved about this story was that it was about falling in love. It was about trusting your heart and your feelings. It was about taking that chance when it really matters for the one who really matters. It was about falling hard and fast and so deeply. It was about embracing people into your life and your heart, and it was about giving love a chance. It was about meeting the right person at the right time, and it was about giving it all you’ve got to keep that person close. This book is about love and family and trust and heart, and it blew me away.

I Want had the perfect blend of feels and emotion, heat and romance, and two characters my heart instantly went to. This book made me laugh, it made me smile, it made me blush and melt again and again, and it just reaffirmed my belief in love and connection. It was that good. It was that amazing. And it was that enjoyable to read. The magic and love and connection you start to experience between Alejandro and Kaya will give you it all, and will have you believing in them, what they share, and every bit of this story.

Ella Fox once again pulled my heart in again and again to both of these characters and their own journeys in this book. I loved them both to pieces, and I loved how their distinctive personalities shined through every page. I loved how Alejandro was so determined to win over Kaya, and how he just knew she was someone he needed in his life. I loved how he was genuine, sweet, and a man with a heart of gold that won me over from page one. I loved how he loved, how he fell, and how he wasn’t afraid to admit it all when it really mattered. I loved him, plain and simple, and I am telling you, every word out of his mouth will melt you a million times over. Especially when he speaks Spanish. That was the best, he was the best, and I just loved him.

Kaya was a female character I could so relate to. I loved how real she was, I loved how she just owned who she was and what she loved to do, and I loved how she was a sweet girl that my heart just went to from the start. I really connected to Kaya’s character and everything I got with her, and I especially loved being there every step of the way as she started to feel what she did for Alejandro. Kaya was such a real, endearing, and kind character that I loved from start to finish, and getting to be with her as I read this book made me love everything I was reading even more.

Not to be outdone, Elvis stole the show in the best way in I Want. I won’t tell you who he is or his part of the story, but let me tell you, you will LOVE him. I know I did. He had me laughing my butt off, loving every moment with him, and loving how he played into the story. He along with the rest of the supporting cast in this book had me knowing again and again why this series is so good, and why it continues to be one I want more of.

When I reached the end of I Want I did so with a heart bursting for these characters and everything they shared. This book made me feel good, it gave me everything I needed, and I loved every word of the love story between Alejandro and Kaya. I can’t wait for more of this series to fall in love with!!! I am telling you if you give this book a chance, you will not regret it! This book is all kinds of phenomenal, it’s well written, the characters are great, the feels and love are there, and in the end it will just have you loving every moment you got within its pages!!

I Want was the perfect fulfilling and enjoyable read, and it is a book you need in your life this very moment! Trust me.

Excerpt

“Climb gates around here often?” he asked, no censure in his voice. I realized he spoke English as fluently as he spoke Spanish.He was clad in navy basketball shorts, a pair of Nike running shoes and he was just sweaty enough for me to realize he’d likely been working out. I swear I was hypnotized by all of his exposed skin, so much so that I could just about remember my own name at that moment. I’d have blamed the fall for my dazed and confused frame of mind but that wasn’t it at all. It was purely because of him—the sexy Spanish-speaking god who’d saved me from certain harm. My eyes trailed along his muscular but lean body hungrily as I catalogued just how ridiculously gorgeous he was. I was hypnotized by his six-pack and the set of V-cut muscles I had an insane urge to trail my fingers over.

I’d have kept right on staring had he not cleared his throat. I cringed as I came back to reality and realized he’d asked a question I hadn’t retained.

“Um, huh?” I asked, perfectly clueless.

“I was asking if you’re a professional gate climber,” he said huskily.

“No, I—”

“She’s really fine after a fall from that height?” the officer asked as he came through the gate.

“She never hit the ground,” my savior said, “since I caught her.”

The cop looked almost as impressed as I felt. I’d have heaped praised onto the stranger who saved me had I not remembered that I needed to be focused on a more pressing concern.

“So now that I’m on this side I really need to get my—”

The officer pinned me with a look that left no doubt that he was in charge. “Miss, please remain silent while I work out what’s going on here.”

I pursed my lips and tried to contain my annoyance. I knew he was just doing his job but all I cared about was finding Elvis.

The officer turned back to the Spanish model—I naturally assumed he modeled because he looked like he belonged in sensual looking black and white ads for men’s cologne. You know the kind of ads I’m talking about, right? There’s always a sexy guy giving you the let’s have all the sex look with a set of eyes that are clearly attempting to hypnotize you into buying something.

He was at least six feet tall and had a head full of thick, dark hair. His face was perfectly proportioned from forehead to chin, and I could find nothing that didn’t appear to be symmetrical. He had a ridiculously sexy closely trimmed beard that I wanted to trace with my fingers and his jaw was the sexiest thing I’d ever seen. I turned crimson when my eyes trailed up and met his and I realized he was observing me—which meant he knew I’d been staring at him. Again.

I bit my lip and tried not to blush as I blinked like an idiot. I was relieved to have a reason to look to the police officer when he cleared his throat to get our attention. “Are you the one who called about the disturbance down the side of the house?” he asked.

I couldn’t resist the urge to let my eyes wander back to the Spanish god. I knew just enough Spanish to determine that if his looks were rated on the salsa scale he’d be called el más caliente.

His eyes were on me as he answered the cop. “My brother called, yes.”

“What’s your name, sir?”

“Alejandro Cruz.”

Even his name was sexy. My skin felt hot and prickly under his gaze. Anxious for a reprieve, I looked back to the officer.

The cop nodded as he took note of it on his pad. “And your brother’s name?”

“Rafael Cruz.”

“And you?” the cop asked with a head nod toward me.

“Kaya Porter.”

“Can you spell that?”

“K-a-y-a,” I answered.

“That’s a weird name,” the officer said as he wrote it down.

I wasn’t sure if he was being rude or not so I shrugged and said nothing. Alejandro growled something under his breath that I couldn’t understand. A shiver went down my back at the way the words rolled off his tongue. His Spanish accent fascinated me. I’d never been one to care one way or the other about a man’s voice, but his did things to me. I wondered if audio erotica was a thing. If it were, I would pay a subscription fee to hear him talk all day.

“So were you trying to escape or get in?” the officer asked, ruining my good fantasy about an Alejandro Cruz dirty talk subscription service.

“I was trying to get in,” I answered stiffly, annoyed that the officer had already forgotten everything I’d said, “I told you—”

“No, no, she is not the disturbance,” Alejandro interjected. “My brother thought someone was trying to steal God only knows what from the exterior of the house. He was asleep and heard something outside his bedroom window and panicked. He shouldn’t have called the police—it’s animal control that we need. Some dickhead bird went through the trash that my brother forgot to secure and he’s been leading him on one hell of a chase around the yard.”

My eyes narrowed and my hands went to my hips as I stared down the model. “Don’t talk about my little buddy like that,” I snapped.

 

 

Also Available

99c for a limited time
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

 

Free in Kindle Unlimited 

Author Bio
Ella Fox is the USA Today Bestselling Author of The Hart
Family Series, Consequences of Deception, The Catch Series and The Renegade
Series. When she’s not writing, Ella indulges the gypsy in her blood and
travels the country. Ella loves reading, movies, music, buying make-up, reading
Tmz, Twitter and pedicures… not necessarily in that order. She has a wild sense
of humor and loves to laugh. Her favorite thing in the world is hanging out
with her family and watching comedy movies.

Releasing Now: Rebel (Renegades #3) by Rebecca Yarros

 

We are so excited to be sharing Rebecca Yarros’s REBEL with you today! REBEL is the third standalone in the Renegades series and is out now–hurry and grab your copy today!

 

About REBEL

She’s Penna Carstairs.

The Renegade they call Rebel.

FMX-treme Magazine’s sexiest female athlete of the year.

There’s no rule in extreme sports she hasn’t broken,

No gender barrier she hasn’t demolished.

 

She’s the woman I met in a bar in Vegas.

The woman I illegally BASE jumped for.

The woman I spent one insane, incredible night with.

But now I’m screwed.

Or rather…not screwed.

 

Because the woman I can’t get out of my head is the one woman I can never touch again.

I’m Dr. Cruz Delgado—the youngest professor on this campus,

And Penelope Carstairs just walked into my class.

 

GET YOUR COPY TODAY!

Amazon / B&N / Kobo / iBooks

 

EXCERPT

“Welcome to Latin American History.”

At that deep, lightly accented voice, my pen fell to the paper, as useless as my brain.

“This class will also serve as your Study At Sea seminar, which means I have the joy of getting to know each of you very well over the next three months since you’ll be writing a thirty-page thesis for me.”

The class groaned, and I slowly dragged my eyes from the paper, past the neck of the red-haired boy in front of me, to the man who stood at the head of our class, casually leaning against his desk. I took in the way his pants hugged his hips, the contrast of his rolled white button-down against his tanned skin, and the loose green tie at his throat. My gaze caught on his lips, the strong line of his nose and cheekbones, to the melty chocolate eyes that were focused on the other side of the room as he addressed the students there. His hair looked like he’d run his hands through it more than a few times, and his teeth flashed white when he grinned, those panty-dissolving dimples appearing.

My heart stopped beating and my breath froze in my lungs, as if the slightest motion would make him disappear. A rush of heat flushed my skin, and the knot in my chest loosened, unraveling as surely as my body had the last time I’d seen him.

“So let’s get started, shall we? I just flew in from the States today, but I’ll be sure to learn all of your names by the end of the week. Now if you’ll let me have this moment, I’ve been waiting eight years to say it— My name is Dr. Delgado.”

Two thoughts slammed into me simultaneously.

One—Delgado. At least now I knew his last name.

Two—Holy. Fucking. Shit. Cruz was my professor.

 

 

DON’T MISS THE OTHER RENEGADES BOOKS!

 

WILDER

I’m Paxton Wilder.

Motocross phenom & adrenaline junkie.

I have more tattoos than scars.

And I’ve never seen a stunt I couldn’t pull off—

Or a girl I can’t get off.

Until she walks in.

 

My new tutor is sexy, smart, more stubborn than I am, and one hundred percent off limits.

That’s right—the only rule this semester is Don’t Touch the Tutor.

For the first time in my life, I want someone I can’t have.

She’s the girl who obeys every rule.

I’m the guy who breaks them.

Our biggest risk is falling for each other,

But I live for risk…

Amazon / B&N / Kobo / iBooks

 

NOVA

The only heart he wants is the one he already broke…

He’s Landon Rhodes.

The Renegade they call Nova.

Sinfully gorgeous, broody, tatted-up, professional snowboarder.

Four-time X Games medalist—

Full-time heartbreaker.

They say a girl broke him once—

That’s why he’s so reckless, so driven, so careless with his conquests.

But I’m that girl.

They can call me his curse all they want.

He and I both know the truth—

He’s the one who destroyed me,

And I’m not the sucker who will let that happen again.

Amazon / B&N / Kobo / iBooks

 

About REBECCA YARROS

Rebecca Yarros is a hopeless romantic and a lover of all things coffee, chocolate, and Paleo. She is the author of the Flight & Glory, Renegades, and Legacy series. She loves military heroes, and has been blissfully married to hers for fifteen years.

When she’s not writing, she’s tying hockey skates for her four sons, sneaking in some guitar time, or watching brat-pack movies with her two daughters. She lives in Colorado with the hottest Apache pilot ever, their rambunctious gaggle of kids, an English bulldog who is more stubborn than sweet, and a tortoise who might be faster than the bulldog. They recently adopted their youngest daughter from the foster system, and Rebecca is passionate about helping others do the same.

 

Connect with Rebecca!

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

 

Releasing Now: Dropout by Jamie Schlosser

 

 

Dropout by Jamie Schlosser

Releasing April 27th

JIMMY
Over the past year, I’ve been called a lot of things. Slacker. Troublemaker. Party animal.
I thought I was on top of the world. Turns out, I was pretty close to rock bottom.
Now I have a new title: college dropout.
Talk about a reality check.
But I’ve got a chance to redeem myself. One summer to turn things around. Two months to prove I’m not a complete f*ck-up.
It’s time to change.
I want to get back to being one of the good guys.

MACKENNA
I have everything I need to live out my dream of being a reclusive songwriter—my guitar, my notebook, and blissful silence.
At least, I did until Jimmy moved in next door.
With tattoos, piercings, and mischievous green eyes, he’s got bad news written all over him. And last time I got with a bad boy, it ended horribly.
Jimmy makes me feel things I shouldn’t feel. Want things I shouldn’t want. He’s a hazard to my carefully laid plans.
But he’s only here for two months.
I can resist him…right?

 

****4.5 Phenomenal Stars****

There is nothing I love more than finding a new to me author’s books to love, and let me tell y’all, I loved every unputdownable bit of Dropout by Jamie Schlosser. This book was fantastic. Fan-freaking-tastic. I could not put it down, I did not want to put it down one bit, and I just loved every single moment I got with these characters as they shared what they did. Jamie Schlosser hooked me into this story from the very first page of that unforgettable and heart racing prologue, and every page that followed pulled me in more to this sweet, heart touching, and deliciously heated love story.

Dropout was a book that had it all. Two lead characters I felt so much for. The perfect blend of banter, heat, and feels. A town and world of supporting characters that were lively and so enjoyable. A story that had the right amount of twists and turns, with just enough of everything woven into a love story I could not get enough of.

Dropout is a satisfying, well written, and downright good read that will have you loving every wonderful bit you get with Mackenna and Jimmy as they see what could be between them. You won’t want to leave those two. Trust me. I finished this book with the biggest smile on my face, and I still wanted more time with those two because I loved their characters so much.

This book made me smile. It made me laugh out loud more times than I could count. It made me swoon and melt and just love what these two were sharing. It kept me so encapsulated in what this author created through every turn of the page, and that was exactly what I needed.

What I Loved About This Book:

  • Jimmy Stole My Heart. Let me tell y’all, Jimmy stole my heart from the very first pages of this book. I loved that man. I loved that he was trying to prove himself and turn his life back to where he wanted it to be. I loved that he was a guy with so much tenacity and determination to get what he wanted, to show Mackenna what could be, yet at the same time he had such a thoughtfulness and protective nature to him that just melted my heart. I loved that he wasn’t afraid to fight for what he knew was possible, and I loved that he did it all with a heart of gold that was good all the way through. I think the goodness of that guy shined through every page of this book, and I can’t say enough how much I loved it. I might’ve also loved the fact that he was covered in tattoos and had piercings to boot. Just saying. I am telling you, once you meet this man, you’ll love him. You’ll love his heart, his humor, and you’ll just love every single incredible bit of him.
  • Mackenna’s Fight to Heal. Mackenna is one strong female character. That girl has been through so much, more than any person should, and years later she is still trying to put all the pieces back together. Since everything that’s happened she’s kept to herself, but one unforgettable encounter with her new next door neighbor Jimmy leads to things she never could’ve expected. My heart went to Mackenna through every page of this book. That girl is on a path to healing, and slowly but surely, she along with the help and thoughtful push of Jimmy, starts to heal from her past in order to fight for the future she so starts to want. I loved Mackenna’s strength, I loved her fire and that she wasn’t afraid to be honest, and I loved how she just felt. I felt it all with that girl while reading this book, and getting to be with her as she healed, as she fell, and as she fought to be where she so deserved to be was amazing.
  • There’s something about those two. From the moment Jimmy and Mackenna meet, there is a literal spark that fires between those two that keeps pulling them closer and closer together. What the two of them share is so real, so full of feels, and I guarantee it’ll make you blush, but more than that it’ll have you knowing and believing about the power of meeting the one right person. What Mackenna and Jimmy share just felt so right and so good. Those two have such a connection with one another that builds and grows over the course of this book. Those two grow right along with that connection, and they soon realize that what first started off with sparks, is so much more. Getting that more with them gave me it all, and had me rooting with all I had that those two would figure it all out. Their love story in Dropout will pull at your heart, while simultaneously making you blush, and you will eat up every moment of that.
  • A town and cast of characters I can’t get enough of. Now I have to say that part of what made me love this book so much was the small town it took place in, along with the incredible and distinctive supporting characters that came along with it. Beverly, Jimmy’s grandma, is an absolute gem and there was not an instant with that spunky woman where she didn’t make me laugh out loud. The other characters of this book and world add a phenomenal layer to the story between Mackenna and Jimmy, and just pull you in more to what’s happening. I fell in love with them all, and the small town they call home. When I finished this book I knew I needed more with them all, and I can’t wait to read the other books in this series and to get back to that small and wonderful town. I am telling you, you will just love being in this book and world and the goodness that exudes from it.
  • A little something more. One of my favorite aspects of this book was how it pushed both Mackenna and Jimmy to want more. It pushed their emotions, their hearts, and their purposes and dreams. It forced them both to really think about what they wanted, and what they were willing to do for what they desired so much. This book and its events pushed them both to their limits in different ways, and forced them to realize what was important and what they needed. Getting to be with them every step of the way as they figured it all out, as they tried to see what could be between them, and as they pushed for that more was phenomenal. It was exciting and romantic and scary and it forced them to be vulnerable and honest, but in the same breath it showed them all of what could be if they only gave it all a chance. Seeing them take that chance was what made this book so good.
  • Phenomenal writing that hooks you in! This is the first book I’ve read by Jamie Schlosser, but you can rest assured it will not be the last. I loved her writing so much. I loved how it hooked me in right from the start, and allowed me to feel like I was right there with these characters experiencing what they were. I loved how her writing let me sink right into this story, how it let me get and understand these characters, and how it put me right in the thick of it with them. Her writing brought these characters and their story to life in the most consuming way, and that is just part of why I loved what she gave me so much. I look forward to reading more of her words because I have no doubt I will love them just as much as I did with Dropout.

Dropout is a story of how the one person you would have never thought would mean something, can end up being the one person who means everything. This book is a sweet, enrapturing, and humor and heat filled read that will give you a book full of life, love, healing, and the amazing things that can happen when you have all three. This book just made my heart happy. It squeezed it with what these characters go through and their struggles, and it had me loving and rooting for them through every word.

If you are looking for a story that will take you in with all it has, give you so many moments that will have you laughing and smiling and just feeling it all, all while falling head over heels for the serious connection and heart of two characters, then you need this book in your life. I can’t say enough how much I needed a book like this. It just felt good to read this story, to get to know and fall in love with these characters, and to be with them through everything that came their way.

Dropout was well written, unputdownable in the best possible way, and told a phenomenal story of two characters that may have seemed quite opposite, yet connected in all the right ways that mattered. You will love this book, and I am telling you, in the end you will finish it with a full heart and a big smile, and maybe a bit of a blush, and that is just part of what makes this book so incredible.

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Release Boost: Shameless by Lex Martin

 

Title: Shameless
Author: Lex Martin
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
 Release Date: April 26, 2016 

Synopsis2

Brady…

What the hell do I know about raising a baby? Nothing. Not a goddamn thing. Yet here I am, the sole guardian of my niece. I’d be lost if it weren’t for Katherine, the beautiful girl who seems to have all the answers. Katherine, who’s slowly finding her way into my cynical heart.

I keep reminding myself that I can’t fall for someone when we don’t have a future. But telling myself this lie and believing it are two different things.

Katherine…

When Brady shows up on a Harley, looking like an avenging angel—six feet, three inches of chiseled muscle, eyes the color of wild sage, and sun-kissed skin emblazoned with tattoos—I’m not sure if I should fall at his feet or run like hell. Because if I tell him what happened the night his family died, he might hate me. 

What I don’t count on are the nights we spend together trying to forget the heartache that brought us here. I promise him it won’t mean anything, that I won’t fall in love.

I shouldn’t make promises I can’t keep.

Shameless
is an adult contemporary romance/spinoff featuring a character from The
Dearest Series, but it can be read as a complete standalone.

Purchase Links
Last chance to get your copy for only 99c!!!
AMAZON US / UK / UNIVERSAL

 Read My 5 Star Review of Shameless

Also Available

 

The Dearest Series Boxed Set is FREE on KU for a limited time. Get all three Dearest Series books, including Dearest Clementine, Finding Dandelion and Kissing Madeline, as well as Dearest Series bonus scenes and the first chapter of Shameless.

 

Purchase Links

 

AMAZON US / UK / UNIVERSAL
Author Bio
Lex writes adult novels, the sexy kind with lotsa angst, a whole lotta kissing, and the hot happily ever afters. When she’s not writing, she lives a parallel life as an English teacher. She loves printing black and white photos, listening to music on vinyl, and getting lost in a great book. Bitten by wanderlust, she’s lived all over the country but currently resides in the City of Angels with her husband and twin daughters.
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Releasing Now: Blue Horizons by Kathryn Andrews

Title: Blue Horizons
Author: Kathryn Andrews
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Published: October 19, 2015
Will Ashton

Music is my motivation. I’ve always believed that, because of it, I would be somebody. Somebody to someone, and something to myself.
At age four, I picked up my grandfather’s acoustic guitar and, up until three weeks ago, I’ve never put it down. From a single chord to a full arrangement, music fed my soul. I craved it with every fiber of my being, but now, I just don’t know. That driving force that’s always pushed me has somehow stalled, along with the thrill, the passion, and the familiarity . . . it’s all gone. I’m beginning to worry that my love for music just isn’t enough.

As the summer tour finally comes to an end, I head to the Blue Ridge Mountains instead of returning to Nashville. It’s here that I’ve always been able to lose myself amongst the solitude and the lake, but what I didn’t expect to find was her.

Wild blonde hair, light blue eyes, and a laugh I find myself trying to coax from her has me completely enamored. She’s quiet, incredibly poised, and driven by secrets as big as the mountains around us. They’re what’s made her untouchable, and left me wanting to know more.
Maybe that’s what I need. Maybe I need more. Maybe I need her.

Ava Layne

They say that life isn’t about how many breaths we take, but how many moments take our breath away. But what if those moments aren’t filled with happiness and love, but something dark and haunting? For me, it’s those moments that’ve shaped and taken over my life. I can’t change who I am, God knows I’ve tried, and, because of this, I’ve accepted the silver lining . . . I’m alive.

Fifty-two white keys, thirty-six black keys, ten fingers, seven notes, two friends, and one stage. At the piano, on the stage, with my two best friends, I finally found myself, and I live for those moments. One by one, I collect them, cherish them, patiently waiting for the next, until it arrives and changes everything. That’s the moment I meet him.

 


OVER TEN YEARS ago my husband and I were driving from Chicago to Tampa and somewhere in Kentucky I remember seeing a billboard that was all black with five white words, “I do, therefore I am!” I’m certain that it was a Nike ad, but for me I found this to be completely profound.
Take running for example. Most will say that a runner is someone who runs five days a week and runs under a ten minute mile pace. Well, I can tell you that I never run five days a week and on my best days my pace is an eleven minute mile. I have run quite a few half marathons and one full marathon. No matter what anyone says . . . I run, therefore I am a runner.

I’ve taken this same thought and applied it to so many areas of my life: cooking, gardening, quilting, and yes . . . writing.

I may not be culinary trained, but I love to cook and my family and friends loves to eat my food. I cook, therefore I am a chef!

My thumb is not black. I love to grow herbs, tomatoes, roses, and lavender. I garden, therefore I am a gardener!

I love beautiful fabrics and I can follow a pattern. My triangles may not line up perfectly . . . but who cares, my quilts are still beautiful when they are finished. I quilt, therefore I am a quilter.

I have been writing my entire life. It is my husband who finally said, “Who cares if people like your books or not? If you enjoy writing them and you love your stories…then write them.” He has always been my biggest fan and he was right. Being a writer has always been my dream and what I said I wanted to be when I grew up.

So, I’ve told you who I am and what I love to do . . . now I’m going to tell you the why.
I have two boys that are three years a part. My husband and I want to instill in them adventure, courage, and passion. We don’t expect them to be perfect at things, we just want them to try and do. It’s not about winning the race; it’s about showing up in the first place. We don’t want them to be discouraged by society stereotypes, we want them to embrace who they are and what they love. After all, we only get one life.

In the end, they won’t care how many books I actually sell . . . all that matters to them is that I said I was going to do it, I did it, and I have loved every minute of it.
Find something that you love and tell yourself, “I do, therefore I am.”

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Releasing Now: Be My Temptation by Rachel Brookes

Be My Banner

Title: Be My Temptation

Series: Book 2 of The Crawford Brothers (can be read as a standalone).

Author: Rachel Brookes

Release Date: June 29th 2015

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Synopsis2

One night connected them.
One decision separated them.
One craving tempted them.

Ashlyn Hart was done with men, or at least those outside of her books. After stupidly falling for the charms of her cheating ex and having her heart broken yet again, she decided to create a new life. One that involved a career change, a new wardrobe, and the possibility of moving abroad. There was just one hurdle: the confident, stubborn and insanely-tempting Josh Crawford.

Josh Crawford hid behind the cliché bachelor lifestyle and a never-ending parade of women. He knew the game and played it well, but the night he tasted perfection four years ago never left him. Back then, he made a spur of the moment decision, one that he has battled with ever since. But beneath the playboy façade was a yearning that wouldn’t disappear. A craving for the only woman who could bring him to his knees: Ashlyn Hart.

Two weeks changes everything.
One night unravels the deepest of desires.
A simple taste unleashes memories that can’t be tamed.

When the girl who dreams of a happily ever after collides with the guy who lives the ultimate cliffhanger, what ending awaits them? Will fear overshadow love? Will the past play hindrance to the future, or will temptation conquer it all?

The legs of a beautiful young woman as she lies in bed

Buy The Book

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 Amazon: http://amzn.to/1RJPLYK

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author

Rachel

Rachel Brookes is the author of The Breathe Series and The Crawford Brothers and lives on the east coast of Australia where beaches, kangaroos and surfers roam free. She spends her days writing stories that contain a dash of drama, a cup of romance, a spoonful of sexiness and delicious men to season. She is crazy for The Walking Dead, a fan of long island iced teas, a cupcake creator and a lover of book boyfriends. Rachel sometimes forgets to eat, sleep has become non-existent and more often than not she can’t remember the last time she cleaned her apartment, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. When she steps away from her laptop, you’ll find her reading, people watching, taking photos and planning her next big adventure.

She is also obsessed with social media, so come say hi.

Facebook | Twitter | Reader Group | Instagram | Mailing List | Goodreads

 

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Releasing Now: Sing Like Nobody’s Listening by SJ McCoy

Sing Like Nobody’s Listening Release Day Blitz

 
Title : Sing Like Nobody’s Listening  
Author : SJ McCoy
Release date : February 22nd
 
Kenzie Reid is a survivor. She’s been out on her own since she was seventeen years old. She may not have much to show for it, but she’s made her own way in the world. Other than her sister, Megan, no one has ever cared whether she lived or died—not even her own parents. 

When Kenzie visits Summer Lake to make sure Megan is okay there, the quaint little town threatens to cast its spell over her, too. The place has its attractions, not the least of which is Chase, the lead singer with the local band. Kenzie knows attraction doesn’t last though and besides, she’s not cut out for small town life. 

Chase Harper lives a life many guys would envy. He sings in a band, hangs with his guys, can have any woman he wants—and usually does. When he meets Kenzie, he soon realizes he’d gladly give it all up. He believes what they have could be a one-of-a-kind, but first he’ll have to convince her that it’s more than just a one-off.  

Will two people who weren’t looking for a relationship learn to trust one another enough to make it work?
 
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Kenzie was stunned by the effect he had on her. He took his time looking her over. She felt powerless as her body responded to him. She was used to men checking her out, but usually she was more aware of the effect she had on them than they had on her. Men were simple creatures. They were aroused by what they saw, and they only saw the facade. They saw the short skirts, the clingy tops, the brash blonde who gave as good as she got—usually better. As Chase’s gaze took her in, it felt like he was seeing past all of that, seeing her naked, in every respect. She’d have to be careful with this one. He was a pro.
He slowly lifted his gaze to meet hers. His lips curled up into a satisfied smile, knowing the effect he’d had on her. “Yeah. I was wondering where you’d gotten to, lover.” He narrowed his eyes, his smile sending shivers down Kenzie’s back. “I told you earlier. You’ll be coming with me tonight.”
Kenzie barely registered the girl walking away. She was too busy trying to catch her breath, attempting to ignore the butterflies in her stomach, and the heat starting to build between her legs. Damn him he was hot! For the first time she could remember, she wanted to back off. This guy was dangerous. “Don’t you think that’s a little presumptuous?” She arched an eyebrow at him.
As he grinned at her, his eyes told her he knew, knew that she was backpedaling. “Not at all. I think our earlier conversation was quite explicit about what we both want.” As he spoke, he reached out and placed his hand on her hip, his fingertips tracing the small of her back while his thumb circled her hip bone.
Smooth move! She had to give him that—and if he didn’t stop it soon, she’d give him anything he wanted and more. The heat between her legs was spreading through her as a deep desire for him while he held her gaze.
“Unless I misunderstood?” He drew her a little closer. “I know what I want.” His eyes were mesmerizing, a gorgeous hazel color not unlike her own. They were laughing down at her as he asked, “You’re not really going to tell me you don’t want me, are you?”
Kenzie shook her head. She wasn’t about to admit how badly she wanted him either or that she might have finally met her match. She took a deep breath and smiled back at him. “I wouldn’t lie to you, Chase. We both know I want you.” She gave a little chuckle. “Almost as much you want me, but I can’t tonight.”
She was relieved to see the disappointment, quickly followed by determination, cross his face. She was back in the driver’s seat. “Why not, darlin’? What could be more important than taking this back to my place?”
“My little sister is much more important. I’m only here for the weekend. I can’t just abandon her because some guy wants to sleep with me.” It was true. No matter how much she wanted Chase, she needed to figure out what Megan was getting herself into. Her first impression of Michael hadn’t done much to reassure her. She really shouldn’t go home with this guy tonight. She needed to stay with Megan.
Chase laughed. The sound of it, so deep and genuine, made her smile. “I wasn’t planning on letting you sleep.”
She grinned back at him. “Figure of speech. I wouldn’t let you get any rest either.”
“So why are you playing with me if we’re not going to do this?”
“I didn’t say we’re not going to do this, did I? I said I can’t tonight.”
His grin was so sexy! “So are you saying you can tomorrow night?”
“Maybe.”
He shook his head at her and caught her hand. “Come with me a minute? I want to show you something.”
She nodded and let him lead her away from the crowd. They walked all the way to the end of the deck and down the steps onto the beach. It was dark down here, the noise from the Boathouse was dulled by the steady lapping of the water against the stones on the shore.
Kenzie had to catch her breath again when he came to a stop and she looked up at him. He was gorgeous! The moonlight shone on his face as he pulled her towards him. He was smiling down at her.
“So what did you want to show me?”
“What you’re going to be missing.” As he spoke, he closed his arms around her, crushing her to his hard chest. His lips came down on hers as one hand slid down to clasp her ass and hold her against another hard part of him.
Kenzie’s mind spun away as her hands came up to tangle in his hair. He was biting her lips, demanding entry. She bit back, nibbling his lower lip. He closed both hands around her ass while he walked her backward until he had her up against one of the concrete blocks that supported the deck. Caught between his hands and thrusting hips, she moaned. Chase took advantage of her parted lips and claimed her mouth, his tongue sliding inside exploring, demanding. She moved her hips with his as she kissed him back, grasping his ass, moving him in her time. She parted her legs a little, needing to feel his hard cock pressing into her. God she wanted him! She wanted him out of his jeans and inside her panties. Why the hell had she chickened out? His fingers were teasing her nipple through her dress, driving her crazy. She couldn’t remember ever wanting a man like she wanted Chase right now.
Footsteps came thundering down the steps from the deck, laughter and voices brought her back to her senses. She broke away from him. At least she broke away from his lips. His arms tightened around her middle, his cock pressed deeper between her legs, making her hang on to his shoulders. The look in his eyes took her breath away when he spoke. “Come with me? We can’t stop this now.”
If it weren’t for the look in his eyes, she would have agreed with him. But his eyes were talking about a whole lot more than just the amazing sex they could be having. He looked confused, dazed, and desperate not to let go. Perhaps she could have ignored that. Her own desire might have been enough to override what she saw in his eyes—if it weren’t for the fact that it mirrored what she felt. A kiss had never made her feel this mixed up before. She wanted to explore it, explore him, his mind as well as his body. But that was far too scary. She’d been right from the beginning. This man was dangerous!
“We have to stop this now!” She pushed him off her, a little disappointed that he made no attempt to pin her there and convince her. She started to walk away from him, back towards the steps up to the deck.
“Are you even going to tell me your name?”
She turned back and smiled at him. “Kenzie.”
He caught up with her and closed his arms around her waist. Again she was powerless to stop him. Truth be told, she didn’t want him to stop. Seeming to sense that, he drew her closer with a smile.
“I like it. I never heard that name before.”
She smiled back. “That’s because I’m one of a kind.”
Hi, I’m SJ. A coffee addict, lover of chocolate and drinker of good red wines. I’m a lost soul and a hopeless romantic. Reading and writing are necessary parts of who I am. Though perhaps not as necessary as coffee! I can drink coffee without writing, but I can’t write without coffee. 

I grew up loving romance novels, my first boyfriends were book boyfriends, but life intervened, as it tends to do, and I wandered down the paths of non fiction for many years. My life changed completely a couple of years ago and I returned to Romance to find my escape.

I write ‘Sweet N Steamy’ stories because to me there is enough angst and darkness in real life. My favorite romances are happy escapes with a focus on fun, friendships and happily-ever-afters, just like the ones I write. 

These days I live in beautiful Montana, the last best place. If I’m not reading or writing you’ll find me just down the road in the park – Yellowstone. I have deer, eagles and the occasional bear for company, and I like it that way :0)

 
 

It’s a Cover Reveal: Empty Promises by Elle Brooks

Title: Empty Promises (Promises Series Book #3)

Author: Elle Brooks 

Genre: NA | YA Contemporary Romance

Release Date: February 27th 2015

Synopsis2

Emily ~

What would you do if you knew when you were going to die? 

Would you will death to come and claim you quickly? 

Or would you pray for more time? 


It wasn’t until I knew that I was about to die, that I decided to really live. 

And it wasn’t until I gave up on love, that I finally found it. 

Just not in any of the places that I’d been searching. 

Sometimes you don’t get the fairytale happily ever after, 

but if you’re lucky, 

you get so much more. 

You get a perfect beginning that you can keep hold of until the end.

 

 

 

 

 

 

author

Hello…

I’m a little neurotic; I function on a tiny amount of sleep and a huge amount of caffeine. I love green skittles and have an irrational fear of stormy weather. When I’m not writing about super hot college guys, you can generally find me googling them…All in the name of research of course. I can be persuaded to do just about anything with the promise of a good book or a bottle of bubbles. Oh, and I also love to write. 

Elle is the author of the Promises Series including:

Book #1 is “Promises Hurt” released in August 2014. 

one click here


Book #2 is “Forgotten Promises” released November 2014.

Stalk Elle…

 

 

 

 

PP

Chapter Reveal: Where We Belong by Eve Connell

Title: Where We Belong
Author: Eve Connell 
 Release Date: February 19, 2015
 Synopsis2

 One man diving into the past.

One woman emerging from the depths.

At the age of seventeen, Amelia Baide won silver at the Olympic Games and was the second-fastest woman in the pool. Then one tragic night she crashed into a lake and was dragged out without a pulse. Now twenty-four, she is still haunted by it and hasn’t swum again. Until this year’s anniversary of the accident. It is a day unlike any other and a strange turn of events finds Amelia back at a swimming pool.

Harry Jamieson had eyes for one girl, while women and the media had eyes for him. As a trainer of Olympic athletes, he was an in-demand man. Until one boozy morning after … But from bad luck to pure chance he runs into his old flame, Amelia, at a swimming pool no less. She doesn’t remember a thing from the night of the crash.

And Harry knows every single secret.

The pair joins forces—a comeback for Amelia and Harry’s ultimate coaching opportunity. But dodging waves is hard to do; and even the strongest swimmer may sink.

Where We Belong is a second-chance love story for young and old, for swimming enthusiasts and romantics at heart.

Chapter 1
Amelia
We had the fight moments after I slipped the robe off my shoulders into a pool around my feet. I had one foot on the shower base, one on the plush rectangular mat.
At that moment, my fiancé, Kristopher, knocked from the other side of the bathroom door, which I’d already locked for privacy.
He had this tendency often. The first word he would speak to me all day? As I stepped into the shower. Was it okay if he went out with his friends instead of the dinner reservation? As I stepped into the shower. His solution to cancer? As I stepped into the shower.
Clenching my jaw, I awaited the question.
“Aftershave, Amelia?” he asked.
I sighed. “You should have gotten it when I told you I needed to shower. Or while I collected  my creams and lotions and make-up. Or while I sniffed around for a clean towel in your stash in the corner.”
The soap—as we both  knew—was irrelevant in this argument. For a fleeting moment, I wondered if we  stayed together out of laziness. And maybe we did. Because I hated many  characteristics about my fiancé. Especially his ignorance of this anniversary.
It was September twenty-ninth.
This year I called my boss’s mobile at the crack of dawn to fake a sick day, playing up my groggy  tone as a terrible sore throat in addition to a nauseous tummy. She told me to get well, and I swallowed the news with a lump in my throat, guilty for lying. I was an assistant for a  medium-sized advertising business and handled paperwork, invoicing and calls  all day long—it wasn’t like my absence would be of consequence to day-to-day  activities. I’d pick it up tomorrow.
Last year Kristopher  and I made dates apart with our respective best friends, and I’d spent it eating all the ice cream along a strip of shops down the coast. I’d thrown up once and then kept on going. Jaffa flavour, I remember.
I’d licked and  slurped the drips down the paper cup, and only thought twice of the  anniversary. Once on the drive down to the beach, and then once as I’d clutched the sides of a rusty public bin and spewed my guts up to the backdrop of  disgusted gasps from passers-by.
I don’t know what  Kristopher did that day, but he came back when the night sky was a deep  sapphire blue, whisky on his breath as he climbed in bed behind me.
The year before I  took a day off from work and spent $600 buying cocktail dresses I would never  have occasion to wear. The next day I  donated them to charity.
Six years ago today, I died. Hence, it was the one time  of the year we didn’t forget the date. Unlike some years when we had to shop  for Christmas gifts at two am on the twenty-fourth.
I stared down the white door of the bathroom, one foot tingling with the sharp cold of the shower  base, hand clutching the knob. I stepped back onto the tiles, accepting defeat.
“Come on, Amelia,”  he said in a low tone. “Just one Goddamn bottle of aftershave. That’s all I  need.”
“No. Just wait till  I’m done.”
“Babe.”
“Amelia,” I said.
“Amelia, please,” he said, voice breaking. “I  haven’t showered and I stink. I just need a few fucking sprays, and I’ll be out  of your way all day.”
I gritted my teeth  and hobbled from toe to toe, the cold seeping up my legs. If we kept going on  like this staying out of each other’s way was pointless. We knew how to nip at  each other’s sensitive spots in a way learned from several years of being  together. I saw the forthcoming crash, clenched my eyes shut against the pain. My shoulders heaved, bracing for impact.
Was this what happened to me just before my crash?
Was  there a moment of wide-eyed fear as my corded, muscled arms grabbed the wheel  at the proper ten and two positions, and I flew through the air, reduced to a thin, crushed and crumpled body at the bottom of the lake?
Hot tears grew heavy behind my eyelids as something inside me snapped. I shut the gate to the  horrific visions.
It was too late to  shower.
Kristopher banged  his fist on the door, the boom echoing. I bent and hurried on my new  clothes folded on the counter.
“Come on. This is beyond a joke. It will take you a few seconds to pass it.” The door rattled,  the handle jerking, but I’d locked the door already. “Amelia.”
I slipped my arms into the cardigan and threw open the door, despite the bags under my eyes and the chill settling over my chest because of the unbuttoned front.
I said, “Have it all,” pushing the aftershave bottle into his chest, then rushed past him.
And I didn’t look back.

 Chapter 2 

Harry

I woke to star- and heart-shaped glow-in-the-dark stickers radiating in neon green from the ceiling. A ceiling I’d never seen before in my life—typically, I wasn’t the
sort of man to befriend the fancy sticker type of person.
It was pre-dawn, barely so, the sun a tiny orb just under the horizon through the crack in the curtains.
My world swayed as I tilted my head. I held my ears in my palms, and my fingers weaved through the messy state of my bed hair. Under the purple sheets, my stomach churned, and farther down, morning glory unstuck from the aforementioned undelightful purple sheets. I crawled out of the bed.
What the fuck was this? I thought. And where the fuck was I?
I remembered flashes from the previous night. A club, a slime party, and breathy kisses with the girl who lay splayed under these purple sheets beneath her stars and hearts glow-in-the-dark ceiling.
Viol … Vick … no, it was Vivienne. No, wait, Vivienna.
I smiled, proud of my achievement. But that dropped into a wobbly set of lips. My stomach churned again. I lurched into the attached bathroom and retched, wiping myself clean with water.
Even though I was ninety-nine-point-nine per cent certain I fucked Vicky (or Vivienna), I shivered at the thought of sharing her toothbrush, so I used the handy finger-stick in lieu and then the mouthwash beside the basin.
Feeling somewhat refreshed, I let out a deep breath and looked around the bathroom, not much of a better sight than the bedroom. The towels were white and pale purple, the soap purple, and more stickers dotted along the corners of the mirror above the basin.
I stared at my reflection, disgusted.
My hair Mohawked, askew to one side, a chunk plastered across my forehead in a teenage boy-crush style. I fussed it around with my hands. It looked as if I just had sex, which was better than it had moments prior.
I stepped back into her bedroom, peering amongst the sheets and all her hair. I sighed upon seeing her, confirming one thing. She had the youthful expression of someone I hoped was legal. I was twenty-eight, she perhaps twenty or twenty-one. I hoped.
Since she was still asleep, I returned to the bathroom and looked around for supplies to make myself appear more human. But I caught my reflection in the mirror and stalled. My tan skin and dark hair vividly contrasted against my steel-blue eyes. Most noticeably, a bloodshot glare, lined with purple bags, rolled lazily at the reflection.
I didn’t suspect my pick-up techniques from last night would have worked if I’d looked like this.
Just twelve or so hours ago, one look at Vivienna and she was under my arm, my lips near her ear telling her things she wanted to hear.
I wished I’d had the foresight to stop drinking and pick up her nuisances: the squeals I thought made her sound cute, the frilly neckline of her dress more girly than sweet, and the bright purple shoes. The poor woman had a young girl trapped inside her body.
I looked through the doorway and whispered, “You’re a little crazy, Purple Vivienna.”
I never should have—
Stop, Harry. I told myself. Find some deodorant, get some clothes on, and get out of here.
So I did just that. Then I walked out of her bedroom without a note or text. I didn’t have her number, plus she didn’t care for me.
The others didn’t, either. They thought they cared.
But they wanted the thrill of a night with the Harry Jamieson.
A night of passion and drinking with the idea of love.
One of us had to have our heads screwed on.
With mine teetering on the right side of sanity, I dashed out and found my car parked by the kerb outside her house, hoping she’d been sober enough by the end
of the night to drive it. I knew with absolute certainty I wouldn’t have gotten behind the wheel.
I didn’t drive after drinking. Not anymore.
I travelled home, which took an hour—a long way for pussy, even by my standards—and did the whole routine: shower, force down some hangover-cure food, spend the rest of the day watching TV like a zombie. Late afternoon, I got onto all my emails, responding to meetings, questions and other ad hoc business, then prepared some training sessions for my swimmers.
When I woke the next morning, I stumbled drowsily onto my front lawn in just a pair of sleeping pants and retrieved the delivered roll of newspaper. My neighbour, having noticed my exit, darted her eyes away and scurried inside her house.
I never claimed to be a sight for sore eyes in the morning. But what the hell was that about?

Five minutes later, as I tipped a steaming cup of coffee to my lips, I saw the headline and cursed, spraying coffee all over my granite countertop.

 

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