Posted in Lowery Women, Music Monday, She's Far From Hollywood, The Writing Life

Music Monday – You Make It Easy (Cole & Bree)

The summer months are heating up here in the south, and that always makes me think of the book inspired by all that “heat” – my debut romance, She’s Far From Hollywood. Carolina farmer Cole meets Hollywood diva Bree and sparks fly immediately! They can’t seem to get along, and yet they can’t seem to stay apart, either. And one of my favorite scenes happens in a steaming hot hayloft on a stifling summer afternoon (excerpt below).

Jason Aldean’s hit song, You Make It Easy, is a song I think Cole could have actually written for Bree. She smoothed his rough edges just enough, and he’s in awe of her as well as being in love with her. It’s a great song, and it was an instant-add to my romance playlist!

Here’s that infamous hayloft scene from She’s Far From Hollywood, Book 1 of my Lowery Women Series:

The closer she came to the metal roof of the barn, the hotter it got. Her body shifted into autopilot, and she kept pushing forward. The sooner this was over, the sooner she could get away from Cole Caldwell’s annoying presence and step into a nice, cool shower. She was pushing a particularly large bale over her head when her arms started to tremble with exhaustion. She stepped back so she could use her whole body to shove the stubborn bale into place…

The bale under her foot tipped farther, the one in her hands tumbled free and she was falling. But not for long. Arms like iron gripped her and scooped her up before she could cry out. Cole had leaped up two levels and caught her in mid-air. He twisted and threw himself back against the stacked bales behind him and they both came to a sudden stop…

For a few heartbeats, neither of them moved. The only sound was the chug-chug of the hay elevator. She raised her head and met his eyes, which were just above her own. Instead of the usual cold gray, his were dark and intense. Without moving his head, he slowly lowered her legs until she was standing, but still trapped tightly in the circle of his arms. The suffocating heat of the loft now felt cool against her skin compared to the fire burning between them. Every nerve ending was on high alert. 

His mouth was right there. Right. There. She could feel his breath moving across her cheeks, and she closed her eyes at the delicious sensation of it. She opened them again when she heard a low moan from deep in his throat. Whatever was happening, Cole was feeling it, too…

She could stop him. She could reach up and kiss him and stop him from letting her go. His lips were still just inches away. He shook his head slowly, as if he’d read her mind. His voice was raspy and labored when he broke the feverish silence. 

“You and me are a bad idea, Hollywood.”

She nodded and whispered the words back at him. 

“Bad idea.”

He released her and stepped back, putting more space between them. His voice was stronger this time.

“A very bad idea.”

 

Posted in Lowery Women, Music Monday, The Life She Wants

Music Monday – A Wedding Song for Shane & Mel

Life - Checklist

With all the royal wedding excitement this week, I thought I’d share the little-known song Himself and I danced to at our wedding – the Irish Wedding Song. It’s sung here by Andy Cooney, whom we’ve seen in concert several times.

I say it’s little-known, but anyone from an Irish family (like the one I married into) has probably heard this song before, like…at every Irish wedding they’ve ever been to. Listening to it just now sure brought back memories for both of us.

So it only makes sense that Shane Brannigan, the Boston-Irish hero of my upcoming June release, The Life She Wants, would expect to dance to this when he marries Melanie Lowery. I can see the two of them swaying together on the veranda of the Gallant Lake Resort, surrounded by friends and family, as someone (maybe Andy Cooney?) croons this song to them. Perfect, don’t you think?

Posted in Music Monday, Nora's Guy Next Door

Music Monday – Like I’m Gonna Lose You (Asher & Nora)

Of all my couples, Nora and Asher of Nora’s Guy Next Door are the two who truly understand how fragile life can be. Nora lost a husband. Asher lost a son. And while their story is all about moving on and embracing life and love, the reality of losing someone is surely never far from their minds.

So I can picture the two of them sitting out on the wide covered porch of the log home Asher built on Gallant Mountain, with Meghan Trainor’s beautiful song, Like I’m Gonna Lose You, playing in the background. They’ve watched the sunset together, talking about their day and enjoying a a glass of wine for Nora, whiskey for Asher. The song comes up on Nora’s playlist, and Asher stands and pulls a surprised Nora out of her chair and into his arms. And there, on a warm spring night (spring will get warm eventually, right?), the two of them dance together in the moonlight. Nora’s head rests on his shoulder, and when Meghan and John Legend stop singing, Asher leads her upstairs to continue their slow dance…

Posted in Music Monday

Music Monday: Only Have Eyes For You

Himself and I are about halfway through watching “The Crown” on Netflix. Yesterday we watched the “Beryl” episode, about Princess Margaret’s torrid affair with the enigmatic Tony Armstrong-Jones, whom she eventually married (and divorced…he was a complicated guy). The soundtrack included the classic by The Flamingos – “I Only Have Eyes For You.” Himself and I agreed that it is one of those songs that instantly evokes thoughts of very slow dancing, very close together, forgetting there’s anyone else in the world but the person you’re with. Appropriately enough, I found a version where The Flamingos are singing it on TV in a winter setting for a holiday mood! So grab your honey, turn it up and start your week with a sultry dance.

Posted in Friday Funday, Music Monday

Music Monday – Millionaire

I have a deadline this week (TOMORROW!!!), so I’m skidding in here to quickly share a bluesy country song I just heard a few days ago and immediately added to my love song playlist. Chris Stapleton’s Millionaire is all about appreciating having the love of a great woman, and what really matters in life. That’s a lot like the June Harlequin Superromance I’m just finishing edits on – The Life She Wants. Two strong people on different life paths, and how the hero (finally…) realizes what he should be working to win.

People look at her and they look at me
And say “That boy is sure living in luxury”