Excerpts

Excerpt: She’s Far From Hollywood

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For a few heartbeats, neither of them spoke or 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 slate blue, 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. He took a deep breath and blinked, his eyes flicking away from hers briefly. His hold loosened ever so slightly, and she felt a sharp pang of disappointment.

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.”

She suspected he was trying as hard as she was to convince himself of the truth of those words. His hand lifted toward her face but he stopped before he touched her. It didn’t matter. She felt the zip of energy between his fingertips and her skin. Her lips parted as she closed her eyes and sighed. This bad idea was starting to feel really good.

Excerpt from “The Hide-Away” (working title only) to be published by Harlequin SuperRomance in 2016. Stay tuned here for a release date! Winner in the 2015 Four Seasons Windy City Romance Writers Contest.

Excerpts

Excerpt: She’s Far From Hollywood

Twitter 10.25

He meant to wake her without startling her. Really, he did. But the porch swing rocked unexpectedly when he put his hand on the chain, nearly sending Bree to the floor and causing her to sit up with a jolt. Their eyes met, and he couldn’t help but admire the fire he saw flaring up in her emerald glare. She was like a wild horse just looking to be tamed, and he wanted to be the one to tame her.

What?

He scolded himself mentally for thinking such a stupid thing, and her voice sliced into him to remind him why.

“What the hell are you doing here? And why are you trying to throw me on the floor? What do you want?” She blinked, trying to catch her bearings.  

“I’m an invited dinner guest, Hollywood. I’m sorry for startling you, but dinner’s ready.” He couldn’t resist giving her a jab. “And real farmers don’t sleep while the sun’s still up.”

Her eyes narrowed as she stood. Even in flat sandals, she was only a few inches shorter than him. What little she lacked in height, she made up for in spirit.

“Don’t give me that crap.” Her lips curled in anger. “I’ve worked my ass off since I got here, and I’ll keep working as long as I stay. Now excuse me, but I’m going to see if Nell needs my help with anything. I didn’t know we were having company tonight, but it figures you wouldn’t turn down a free meal.” She brushed past him with her head held high, looking like god-damned royalty as she slammed the screen door closed behind her.

Well…shit...

It seemed as if all their conversations ended with her storming off mad as a hornet. But she sure put on a fine show while doing it. He followed her into the house in bemused silence.

Excerpts

Excerpt: She’s Far From Hollywood

Coffee DeskHuh – I missed a week, didn’t I? Ah, well. Life happens sometimes, and October is a busy month. But I’m here now, and posting an excerpt from She’s Far From Hollywood. This is my most recent book, and I’ve sent it out to a number of agents/editors to see if they might be interested. Time will tell! In the meantime, enjoy this tidbit…

Before Bree’s brain could fully absorb what that meant, Maggie bounded down the driveway and across the road, running directly to her. She’d never really been a fan of dogs, but she found herself dropping to one knee to greet the happy girl. She was a pretty thing, with those expressive brown eyes and her glistening dark coat. She looked like a German Shepard, but darker and more finely-boned.

“A little early for drinking, isn’t it?”

Bree’s head snapped up. Cole was standing in the middle of her yard. He’d stopped there as if that was as far as he dared go, which made her smile just a little as she rose to her feet.

“That’s rich coming from the guy who was drinking at a bar in the middle of the day yesterday.”

“Yeah, well, I’m a man.” He made a point to look her up and down, taking in her bare feet, jeans and t-shirt. “Women in the south tend to be a little more ladylike.”

“Sorry, I left my hoop skirt at home.”

His eyebrow arched and she thought she saw a touch of admiration there. The two of them had the ability to exchange scathing sarcasm down to an art. She bit back a smile of triumph and turned to the door to leave him standing there, but Maggie’s soft whine stopped her. She looked down and couldn’t resist scratching the dog’s ears one more time.

“Maggie hasn’t seen anyone at the cottage in a while, and she seems to like you for some reason.” His expression made it clear he couldn’t understand the dog’s logic.

Excerpts

Excerpt: Halcyon

Coffee DeskAn excerpt from Halcyon. This is my first book, to be published in 2016. This excerpt is subject to minor changes before publication. As always, this is make-believe – any resemblance to actual people/places/etc. is unintentional and coincidental. It’s fiction, folks!

 

 

     Amanda was having the weirdest medieval dream. She was in a massive, heavily-carved mahogany bed, covered with a satin comforter. Heavy tapestries draped the canopy of the bed and hung behind the huge headboard. The room was large and round. The only light came from a fire in the marble fireplace. The flames flared and danced merrily when she looked that way, then settled back to a gentle glow. Tall windows were set deep into the walls, framed with heavy damask curtains.
     A wing-backed chair was pulled up close to the bed, and a man was sleeping there with his feet propped up on the mattress next to her. But this was no knight of the round table. He was dressed in blue jeans and a plaid shirt. Black hair curled down over his forehead.
     Blake Randall.
     This was no dream.
     Peeking under the sheets, she saw she was wearing a large t-shirt she didn’t recognize, and nothing else. She sat up, and the quick movement was enough to wake him. His eyes opened, but he didn’t move. He just watched her cautiously as if he thought she might bolt. And she was seriously considering it.
     “Where am I?”
     He sat up and slowly dropped his feet to the floor. Leaning forward, he rested his elbows on his knees, clasping his hands in front of him. His voice was soft and deep.
     “You’re in my suite at Halcyon.”
     “What time is it?”
     “A little after eleven.”
     “What happened?”
     Before he could respond, she remembered. Greg and Katt. The storm. Her panic attack. She groaned at the memory.
     Blake muttered something under his breath, but he didn’t move. She frowned at him.
     “Did you undress me?”
     “No. Your cousins and my manager Julie took care of that. I just donated the shirt.”
     “The girls know I’m here?”
     He nodded. “Of course. I didn’t kidnap you, Amanda. I just wanted to keep you as far away from Greg as possible. Nora’s asleep in the suite next door. Your other cousins went back to the resort a while ago. All of your things are here.”
     “And Greg?”
     She was shocked at the rage she saw flash across Blake’s face. He took a deep breath before he answered in a low growl. “He’s gone. That’s all you need to know.”
     She felt a little light-headed as she propped herself against the headboard. She had the strangest thought, and spoke it out loud. “Did you kill him?”
     Blake’s eyebrows raised, and his mouth quirked into a smile. “I’m impressed you think me capable, Miss Lowery. But no.”

Excerpts

Excerpt: She’s Far From Hollywood

Coffee DeskAn excerpt from She’s Far From Hollywood. This is my second book, to be published in February 2017. This excerpt is subject to minor changes before publication. As always, this is make-believe – any resemblance to actual people/places/etc. is unintentional and coincidental. It’s fiction, folks!

 

     “Would you like another glass of wine?”
      Bree stared at her empty glass, still burning over Cole’s judgment of her.
     “Gee, Ty, I wouldn’t want to offend your brother’s sensibilities by ordering more wine. Maybe I should try what he’s having.”
      Cole let out a sharp, humorless laugh. “You’d hurt yourself, honey.”
      Oh, no he didn’t. “Let’s make one thing clear. I am not your honey.” She impulsively reached for Cole’s glass. His hand shot out so quickly she didn’t see it move until he grabbed her wrist tightly. His fingers were as hard as his eyes, and she gasped at the feel of his calloused skin on hers.
      Ty’s voice dropped to a growl. “Cole, I’ll throw your ass out the door myself if you don’t let her go and knock it off. What the hell is wrong with you today?”
      Cole pierced her with his eyes, and he didn’t let go. His voice was low and rough.
      “Don’t start something you can’t finish… honey.”
      They glared at each other, then he released her hand and pushed it away, causing some of the golden liquor to slosh over the rim of the glass onto her fingers. She kept her eyes locked on his as she lifted the glass to her lips and emptied it. His eyebrows raised just enough that she knew he was surprised, even if his expression remained carved in stone. Both men probably expected her to have a coughing fit or some other girlish reaction, but they were going to be disappointed. Thanks to her father, she was no stranger to hard liquor, including whiskey. She welcomed the burn as the strong drink warmed its way to her stomach. After setting the glass on the counter, she slowly licked the spilled whiskey from the tips of her fingers. Cole’s nostrils flared just a bit at that move.
      “Not bad.” She shrugged, settling back down onto the barstool. Ty’s eyes were bright with laughter, and he was staring at her in awe. He nodded toward Cole.
      “Brother of mine, I do believe you’ve finally met your match.”

Excerpts

Excerpt: Halcyon

Check out my new page – My Titles! My plan for the website is to provide a personal post once per week, plus an excerpt from one of my romance novels and/or a commentary on other authors’ books I’m reading.

When reading excerpts (or any work of my or anyone else’s fiction), please remember that it’s make-believe. The characters and stories are fictional. Any resemblance to real people, stories, places are strictly coincidental and unintentional. These are excerpts from unpublished works, so the copy may or may not change slightly before publication.

EXCERPT FROM HALCYON (see Titles page):

I don’t need a twelve bedroom castle, Miss Lowery.”

“It’s been a home before, and it could be again.” She was like a dog with a bone.

“Yes,” he said with a heavy sigh, “it was a home. And yes, the stories are full of romance and tragedy, but…”

“Stories? Tell me!” Amanda was leaning forward now, eager to hear. A smile teased her lips. Very rarely had she given him a genuine smile this week, and the effect of it caused him to stutter.

“T-Tell you what?”

“Tell me the story of Halcyon.”

He shook his head. “There are plenty of people around who know the history of this pile of rocks better than I do. I just wanted the land, not the legend.”

“There’s a legend? Now you have to tell me!” Her blue eyes were sparkling, and she laughed out loud. It was his heart that stuttered this time.

Blake racked his brain for the history of Halcyon. He’d been disgusted with the whole stupid story right up until the moment Amanda Lowery fell in love with it.