In Pieces by Danielle Pearl ~ Blog Tour & Excerpt

Three years ago she was left in pieces . . . Most college freshmen love the newfound freedom of living on campus, but none of them craves it like Beth Caplan. One ill-fated night when she was fifteen left her locked in a posh prison of private tutors. It’s for the best, everyone said, and maybe it was. But after years of hard work and healing, the one person who never thought of her as broken could be the one to break her all over again. And Beth can’t seem to stay away now any more than she could all those years ago.

As soon as David March learned his best friend’s little sister was enrolling at his school, he promised to look after her, and promised himself he’d keep a safe distance. But the sweet little girl he’d grown up with has transformed into a gorgeous young woman, and she’s attracting attention from people she shouldn’t-like the ex who nearly destroyed her and a strange new student with a disturbing habit of showing up wherever Beth goes. But for David, the most troubling discovery is realizing that he doesn’t just want Beth to be safe. He wants her to be his.

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David
Present Day

Beth slams the door of the Uber and runs barefoot into the building, her heels dangling from her hand by their straps. I give her a thirty-second head start, clenching my jaw shut to resist calling after her with something I might regret, knowing my temper and the still-potent buzz of alcohol have the potential to create the perfect storm right now.

Beth bypasses the small elevator bank and veers left toward the stairwell, heaving the door open and making sure to slam it loudly behind her.

I shake my head in disapproval, wanting to berate her for even that—taking the stairs alone at night when she knows the elevators are safer. Even if the small part of my brain that’s still somewhat rational admits that my building is relatively safe in general. But it’s her mentality that’s making me crazy. With everything going on right now, and everything she knows about this fucked- up world, why would she take risks with her safety at all?

I shove my hand through my hair and slam my foot into the doorjamb. I just can’t fucking believe her right now! And she has the balls to stomp away from me as if I’m the fucking bad guy?

I haven’t had much occasion for indignation in my life, but right now it’s making me grind my teeth into fucking dust. Because the reality is Beth could get hurt again. She could get hurt worse.

My brain gets caught on that last thought, and I can’t get past it no matter how hard I try. It rages through me until my blood boils over, the buzz of alcohol feeding the flames like gasoline as they fire me back into motion. I crush what’s left of my cigarette under my shoe, and march up the rest of the steps and down our hallway. I’m already reaching for the door with my keys when I realize it’s fucking ajar, and the sight of it incenses me even more.

Could she possibly be any more cavalier with her goddamned safety?

It’s after one in the motherfucking morning! Who the hell leaves their front door open in the middle of the night like an invitation for trouble? Especially someone who, on top of everything else, just spent the entire fucking night drinking. She once told me she thought I was trouble. She has no fucking idea what trouble even is.

I barge through the door, all out of patience and ready to tell her off, but the apartment is dark, the only light glowing from the crack beneath the bedroom door. Beth’s presence would be impossible to miss, though, what with the sound of her tramping around the room, violently yanking and slamming drawers like she wants the whole damned building to feel her wrath.

Well, at least that’s one feeling that is definitely fucking mutual.

I throw the bedroom door open with more force than I intend, and Beth jumps at the reverberating bang as it smacks against the opposite wall. But she catches herself without even glancing my way, continuing about her business like I don’t even fucking exist.

My outrage dissipates as I take her in. Her long blonde hair is haphazardly piled on top of her head, and she’s already changed into a T-shirt and yoga pants. My eyes get stuck on her ass for several seconds before I even process the fact that she’s shoving her shit into her duffle bag.

She yanks open another drawer—the one I’d cleared for her bras and underwear—and panic rolls through me. It doesn’t mix well with the indignation. Or the booze.

Somehow I manage to force enough patience to keep from unloading my every grievance on her at once, and I just stand here glowering, biting back every word I couldn’t wait to get out just moments ago—those words now lodged uncomfortably in my throat, held hostage by that fucking duffel. And suddenly I resent that, too. The fact that Beth has the nerve to vilify me for looking out for her. For taking her out to do something she fucking loves. But more than anything, I resent that I fucking care. That the sight of her packing her things affects me. Not just my feelings—my motherfucking feelings—but my actions, too.

It gives her a kind of control—power. It’s not a dynamic I’m used to with women, and it’s left me a little lost and a lot confused. And even more pissed the fuck off. It’s enough to demolish even my pretense of patience, my composure shattering in one fell swoop, and I spring into action, thrusting myself in front of her in challenge.

“’The fuck are you doing?” I demand.

Beth’s jaw locks, but she just sidesteps around me.

“Beth,” I warn.

She snatches handfuls of panties from her drawer—my drawer—with enough hostility that I worry for the integrity of the delicate lace, and my inebriated mind actually pities them until I remember it’s me she’s fucking pissed at. The appearance of her underwear doesn’t help my focus, either. But watching her shove them purposefully into her bag snaps me back to reality. Or it snaps me the fuck out of my Beth-panty-coma, at least.

“What the fucking hell are you doing?” I repeat as calmly as I can manage—which, it turns out, isn’t calm at all. But where the hell does she think she’s going in the middle of the goddamned night?

“Taking my stuff and going back to my dorm,” Beth deadpans, and it takes me a second to realize she’s not actually kidding.

I shake my head and grab her upper arms. “The fuck you are!”

Beth wrenches from my grip, and I have to release her or risk hurting her, which is not a fucking option. “The fuck I am, is right!” she shouts, skirting back around me to stuff more clothes into her bag.

And, finally, I lose it.

I grab the offending fucking duffle and flop it upside-down, shaking it violently until all of her shit falls onto my bed in an unceremonious pile of all things Beth.

“What the hell are you doing!” she hisses, climbing onto the bed to regather her clothes.

I don’t even think. I take hold of her calves and jerk her knees straight, and she squeals with surprise, falling facedown onto the bed, right atop the heap of clothing. But I don’t back off. I grab her hips and flip her onto her back in one not-so-smooth movement, bending over her and planting my palms on either side of her face in a makeshift cage. Beth’s lips part in a small o of shock, but she can’t escape my gaze, trapped beneath me like she is.

But that goes both ways, and I force myself to close my eyes, and inhale a choppy rush of air before meeting hers.
Something changes when I reopen my eyes. Beth’s temper seems to have dissipated, her dark blonde brows pulled together in helpless bemusement. Her eyes are deep blue oceans, and they draw me in like an undertow, luring me into their shallows before drowning me in their depths.

But, somehow, they calm me, and the anger is drained right out of me as something tugs inside my chest. For a moment I forget how we even got here. All I register are her sharp, shallow breaths as they whisper against my lips in soft gusts.

Somewhere in the back of my mind I know this is dangerous—her lying beneath me like this. It calls to that reckless part of me. The same part that risked dancing with her tonight…that wants to just say fuck it, again and again and again. The part that can’t remember the reasons to stay away.

Beth’s tongue darts out to lick her bottom lip, and my dick jumps in my jeans, still swollen and aching, which it has been all night on some level or another. I suck in an uneven breath, the air hissing between my teeth, and I know I need to either get off of her or inside her in the next sixty seconds.

Danielle Pearl is the Amazon and iBooks international best selling author of the Something More series. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and three children. She is a life long book enthusiast who has been writing ever since she could hold a pencil.

Danielle went to Boston University and worked in marketing before she published her first novel, Normal in 2014. She writes mature Mature Young Adult and New Adult Contemporary Romance.

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AVAILABLE NOW!! Secrets Hidden in the Glass by Cate Beauman

Today we have the release day blitz for Secrets Hidden In the Glass by Cate Beauman! Check it out and get your copy today!

 Stained glass artist Callie Davis is in desperate need of a vacation. Burnt out and on the edge of a nervous breakdown, she’s fleeing the pressures of her career and is taking refuge on Massachusetts’ tiny Carter Island. Callie yearns for long, lazy days and pretty walks on the beach—blessed solitude and an escape from the complications of her life. Then she bumps into gorgeous Nate Carter and everything changes.

Sheriff Nathan Carter couldn’t be happier now that the height of the summer season has finally come and gone. After four endless months, tourists have packed their bags and headed for the mainland. The quiet days of autumn are about to befall the town—the way Nate and his fellow Sandersonians like it best.

But nothing ends up quite the way Nate expects when he meets the beautiful blonde with the big blue eyes. Callie’s pretty smiles hide secrets—deep, dark mysteries that could cost them both their lives if they continue digging into the past and cross a killer’s path.

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They started walking again, and a wave rushed up, washing over their feet.

Callie gasped and stepped farther away. “Oh, my God, that’s cold.”

Like ice water, but Nate shrugged. “It’s not so bad.”

She looked at him as if he were crazy. “It’s freezing.”

“It usually is for most mainlanders—blood’s too thin.”

She stopped in her tracks and pushed her sunglasses onto her head, rewarding him with a look at her big baby blues. “Are you suggesting that mainlanders are wimps?”

“I’m not trying to hurt your feelings or anything…” He shrugged again, struggling not to smile. “But you’re the one who can’t get your feet wet.”

She splashed her foot in the surf as the next wave started receding.

He chuckled, thrilled that Callie seemed willing to play. “That’s not showing me much.”

She walked closer to the water, adding both feet this time.

He came up next to her and took her hand, pulling her toward the actual Atlantic. “In up to your knees for three good waves.”

She hesitated.

He sent her a wry smile. “See? Wimp.”

She grinned. “All right. Three good waves.”

“You’re on.” He walked out with her, clenching his jaw against the bone-numbing cold, fighting the urge to swear.

She gasped, then squealed as the first wave rushed past their calves.

“We’ll count that as one,” he yelled over the pounding water, still walking farther out with her. “And here comes the next.” He braced himself, gripping her hand tighter as the current came in with a powerful rush and nailed them thigh-level.

Callie screamed as she laughed and made a move to head to shore.

He laughed too, pulling her back and bringing her closer to him. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“It’s too cold,” she screeched.

“I don’t think so, mainlander.” He hooked his arm around her midsection and held her in front of him as the next wave came in and sent a steamroll of water crashing into their waists.

She screamed again, gripping his forearm as if her life depended on it, and threw her head back on a long peel of laughter.

He let loose his own deep belly laugh, loving the way she sounded—that he could smell her flowery shampoo as she rested her body against his. That they were having fun.

“Nate,” she fought to say. “Let’s get out of here.”

He took her hand and they ran as best they could toward shore.

She stumbled as they made their way to the ankle-deep water. “Cramp. My toes are cramping.”

He moved to take her weight and carried her more than walked with her to the loose, warm sand free from the surf. “Bend your foot forward until it passes,” he said, slightly out of breath.

She did as he told her.

“Better?”

She nodded her head as her teeth chattered and goosebumps puckered her skin.

“Works every time.”

“Your toes cramp too?”

“Hell, yeah. That water’s like an ice bath. I never go in without a wetsuit.”

Her eyes went huge as she gaped at him. “What are you talking about? What happened to your thick, native Sandersonian blood?”

He chuckled, enjoying the gorgeous woman who’d forgotten she was shy. “My blood’s probably right on par with yours. I just wanted to get you out there.”

She laughed and swatted at him. “That’s a dirty trick.”

“Maybe.” It concerned him a little that her lips were turning a light shade of blue. He rubbed his hands up and down her soft, smooth arms. “Come up to the house. I’ll get you a towel and you can warm up by the fire and have a beer.”

She looked over her shoulder toward the noise and small crowd of people. “That sounds fun, but I should probably head home.”

He struggled with a wave of disappointment. “Are you sure?”

She nodded, holding his gaze as they stood inches apart. “Maybe next time.”

“Next time,” he repeated, knowing the moment they’d shared was over. He gave her a final rub and stepped back. “It’s a couple miles to the cottage. You’re good to get there?”

“Yeah. Definitely.” She bounced gently from foot to foot in her attempt to keep warm. “Thanks for the walk. I can now say I’ve partaken in my very own version of a polar plunge.”

He grinned. “I think you have to jump in during the winter for it to count as a polar plunge.”

A look of horror filled her eyes. “That’s never happening.”

He chuckled.

She smiled again. “Thanks, Nate.”

He nodded. “I’m sure I’ll see you around town.”

“Okay.” She walked backward for a few steps, waved, then turned and ran. She swooped down for her shoes and headed toward one of the bike racks several hundred feet in the distance.

He started back to the house in no hurry to get there, even though his shorts were soggy and he was freezing his ass off. His teeth started chattering and he smiled. As far as he was concerned, every minute with Callie was worth his current discomfort now.

 

International bestselling author Cate Beauman is known for her full-length, action-packed romantic suspense series, The Bodyguards of L.A. County. Her novels have been nominated for the National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, National Indie Excellence Award, Golden Quill Award, Writers Touch Award, and have been named Readers Favorite Five Star books. In 2015, JUSTICE FOR ABBY was selected as the Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Gold Medalist, while SAVING SOPHIE took the Silver Medal.

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Fault Lines by Rebecca Shea ~ Cover Reveal

From USA Today bestselling author, Rebecca Shea, comes a new, heartbreakingly beautiful standalone romance, FAULT LINES. Don’t miss the amazing cover below, and pre-order your copy today!

At eleven he was my first crush. At sixteen he became mine. At nineteen he broke my heart and destroyed me. That was ten years ago and the last time I saw Cole Ryan.

They say you never get over your first love…I beg to differ. I left my shattered heart buried in a town I never expected to return to. I erased every thought of him and buried the memories never to be found.

I moved on…now ten years later I have the perfect life, the perfect fiancé, the perfect career. Everything I ever wanted until I’m forced to go back and face my past and the man that destroyed me.

He won’t stop until I know the truth no matter how hard I fight it. In the end, lies will be uncovered, hearts will be broken, and my life as I’ve come to know it destroyed.

Cover designed by Letitia Hasser of RBA Designs  

FAULT LINES is coming October 30, 2017! Pre-order your copy today!

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There is no preorder for Amazon, sign up for a LIVE RELEASE ALERT from Amazon HERE!

Pushing through the doors to Manny’s, I see everyone assembled near the bar. Friends and colleagues that I have worked with throughout the years have been waiting on me to arrive to celebrate today’s verdict.

“Congratulations!” Everyone cheers as Ted and I approach the bar. I toss my purse on a bar stool and reach for the glass of white wine that Eduardo, my co-counsel, is holding out for me.

Pressing the cool glass to my lips, I let the smooth wine settle on my tongue before swallowing.

“I’m so damn proud of you.” He leans in and whispers, wrapping one arm around my shoulders.

“I couldn’t have done it without you. I mean that.” I smile at him and squeeze his arm in a gesture of gratitude. Eduardo took me under his wing when I joined the county attorney’s office a little over four years ago. I was an experienced trial lawyer, having learned the ins and outs of trial law with Ted’s firm, but this is new. I’m on the prosecuting end now. This is where I always dreamed to be. Ted’s firm helped me get here and Eduardo has been my mentor and basically my best friend since I arrived.

“I’d be surprised if they even try to appeal,” he says, taking a sip of his vodka tonic. “You were that good. There were no holes in your closing arguments. You presented solid evidence and left nothing for them to come back at us with.”

“She learned from the best,” Ted says, leaning over my shoulder.

Eduardo’s eyes glance away from mine and up to Ted’s. “Mr. Winters,” Eduardo says, reaching out to shake Ted’s. “Nice to see you again.” It’s hard to miss Eduardo’s visible disdain for Ted. His jaw ticks and he swallows hard, but as always, he is the epitome of professional and is always gracious.

“I’ve learned a great deal from both of you.” I smile and wish for the pissing contest to end. “Let’s enjoy our victory.” I hold up my glass of wine to toast, raising my eyebrows, a silent plea to Ted to be nice and he obliges.

“To guilty verdicts,” Eduardo cheers, raising his glass.

Ted gives his head a little shake but reiterates Eduardo’s sentiments.

“To guilty verdicts,” we all repeat and take a drink.

I notice Ted step away to take a phone call and I turn my attention back to Eduardo.

“First and only time I think I’ll ever hear him say that,” Eduardo jokes.

“I think that’s the first and only time I’ll ever hear him say that, too.” I laugh.

My fiancé, Ted Winters, is partner in Winters and Seldon, one of the smallest yet most prestigious law firms in Los Angeles County. Ted is known for representing some of the most high profile, and even dangerous, criminals in California. What cases he doesn’t win, he prides himself on reduced charges, jail time, and fines.

Not guilty—those two words drive him to be the greatest. He’s the best of the best, and he hired me right out of law school. He taught me the way around a courtroom, the best oral arguments, and the tricks to dissect evidence and to look for what everyone else is missing. I took what I learned from Ted and am finally putting it to use as a Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County. I always wanted to be on this end of the law, finding justice and doing right by the law.

To avoid any conflict of interest, I avoid all cases where Winters and Seldon is concerned. There are plenty of other prosecutors to try those, and it’s best, both professionally and personally, if I avoid any cases Ted or his firm are involved in.

As I look around the bar at my friends and colleagues, I can’t help but smile proudly at how far I’ve come—and for the people who’ve been with me on this journey.

As my smile fades, I feel the exhaustion hit me like a freight train and, with a few glasses of wine on top of that, I find the need for fresh air. I weave through a sea of bodies in the bar area and push through the large glass door, which leads out onto the rooftop patio.  Los Angeles has far from quality air, but pulling the mild summer breeze into my lungs feels good. A sense of calm falls over me as the adrenaline from the day wears off. Carrying the stress of this trial on my shoulders for weeks has wreaked havoc on my sleep, my diet, and exercise, and I can feel the toll it’s taken on my body.

I watch the cars below, crawling along the busy Los Angeles streets, and the hustle and bustle of the city just fifty stories below me. It’s windy up here on the patio, and the soft afternoon breeze whips my hair around. I tilt my face to the sky and let the setting sun cast its warm rays on me when my phone buzzes in my hand. I hesitate, wanting to indulge in a few more moments of silence, but I think better of it.

Glancing down, I see my mom’s home number flashing on the sleek screen of my oversized mobile phone.

“Hi, Mama.” I take a deep breath, excited to hear her voice.

“Frankie?”

My heart sinks when I hear a man’s voice. A voice I could never forget. A voice so familiar that it still haunts me to this day.

Cole. The only person to ever call me Frankie. My heart stills as I wait for him to say more.

“You need to come home,” he says gruffly.

My stomach drops as his voice takes my breath away. The pull it still has on me shakes me to my core. Before he says anything else, I close my eyes and find myself lost in time, back to when I was eleven years old, spending my afternoons down at the fault line, soaking up the last of the days sunlight with Cole by my side.

Crescent Ridge, Nevada resides right on top of a fault line, a town with less than eight hundred people, and sits on the California/Nevada border. A town I left ten years ago and haven’t returned to—because of Cole.

 

Rebecca Shea is the USA Today Bestselling author of the Unbreakable series (Unbreakable, Undone, and Unforgiven) and the Bound and Broken series (Broken by Lies and Bound by Lies). She lives in Phoenix, Arizona with her family. From the time Rebecca could read she has had a passion for books. Rebecca spends her days working and her nights writing, bringing stories to life. Born and raised in Minnesota, Rebecca moved to Arizona in 1999 to escape the bitter winters. When not working or writing, she can be found on the sidelines of her sons’ football games, or watching her daughter at ballet class. Rebecca is fueled by insane amounts of coffee, margaritas, Laffy Taffy (except the banana ones), and happily ever afters.

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Gun Shy by Lili St. Germain ~ Chapter Reveal

A stand-alone psychological thriller.

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS GIRL?

In the middle of a fierce snowstorm in Gun Creek, Nevada, seventeen-year-old Jennifer Thomas disappears without a trace.

The second girl in nine years.

Identical cases. Identical conditions. Only last time, the girl was found. Dead, stuffed in a well beside the creek that feeds the town’s water supply.

The killer was never found.

As the small town mobilizes and searches for newly vanished Jennifer Thomas, one suspect comes to the fore. But did he do it? Or is there something else at play? Something nobody could have anticipated?

For Jennifer’s friend Cassie Carlino, the worst is yet to come. As she pins MISSING posters to store windows and joins the search, she begins to suspect that Jennifer’s disappearance might be much closer to her than she could have ever imagined.

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CASSIE

The center of town is teeming with reporters when we arrive. The mood is somber, self-conscious, even. Can an entire town be collectively self-conscious? They’re shy, that’s for sure. We don’t get a whole lot of visitors in Gun Creek. Certainly not ones who stick microphones in your face and blast you with questions while you’re still half-asleep.

Damon parks the patrol car right across the front doors of the police station, his face drawn and tense. It must be a fucking nightmare, being in charge of an entire town like this. Especially when something like this happens.

I can only imagine how bad things are going to get at home if they don’t find this girl soon.

“These people are fucking vultures,” he mutters, and I make a noise signaling my agreement. He gets out, opening my door for me.

I muster up a plastic smile as Damon holds out my purse, the strap dangling on his outstretched finger.

“Thanks,” I say, taking the bag and slinging it over my shoulder. I put my oversized dollar-store sunglasses on my face, the day already too bright for me to bear.

“You okay?” Damon asks.

“Always,” I reply, walking away from him before he can say anything else. I should ask him if he’s okay, but that would mean pretending that I care.

I have something important that I need, something immediate.

I’m an asshole because I know I should care about the fact that a girl I’ve grown up with is missing, but I have more pressing personal matters.

I need to take care of myself, first. I head for the diner, fifty feet away, already late for my shift. I push past reporters, hanging eagerly at the doors they’re forbidden to cross. They have to hover outside in the snow for their pound of flesh, their soundbites, their newsworthy quotes from Jennifer’s distraught friends and family. I see Casey Mulligan, a girl I went to school with, twirling a strand of long blonde hair around her finger as she musters up a couple of fat tears for a news camera, and it strikes me, just like last time, that the people who get the most attention in this world are the ones who least deserve it.

Still, I’m glad it’s not me. Last thing I want is a camera in my face. I slip by, unassisted, unseen, an invisible girl with a hollow spot inside me. I notice the crates of milk that get delivered to Dana’s every morning are still stacked out front and I grab one as I approach, throwing my purse on top and bracing my stomach muscles to carry the thirty-odd pounds worth of liquid weight. One of our regulars holds the door open for me and I smile in thanks, lugging the milk crate through the diner and toward the cold storage out back.

I’m making my way down the main entrance, past rows of tables and customers talking feverishly about Jennifer, my arms full of milk bottles when it happens.

I see him. Him.

I stop.

My arms stop functioning. I drop everything; the milk crate, my purse, my practiced neutral expression. The purse wafts to the floor, the milk bottles hurtle down with an unceremonious crash, and blue plastic lids burst off and go skittering in every direction.

I sink to my knees, in shock. People are looking at me, but I don’t pay attention to them. I’m too busy fixated on the green-eyed ghost standing in front of me. The splinters in my knees sting like fire-ant bites, and I curl my legs to the side, coming to a sitting position.

“Shit!” Leo says, dropping his backpack to the ground and crouching in front of me. “Cass. Cassie. Are you okay?”

My entire body is alight, little pinpricks along my skin that make me dizzy. The feeling spreads like wildfire, across my chest and through my limbs until I’m overwhelmed and frozen on the spot, sitting on my ass in the middle of the diner, voices and whispers all around.

I watch in fascination as milk spreads in a puddle in front of me, like spilled blood. It rushes at me like a miniature tsunami as a painful buzz begins in my head.

“You’re gonna pass out,” Leo says, his words sounding far away as he reaches out a hand to help me up. “Jesus, Cassie, you’re white as a sheet.”

I hold my hand out, the conviction in my reach laughable, and it’s like that moment of electricity that people talk about. I can feel it build in my fingertips, that arc of some invisible thing that wants to join with his invisible thing, but then a hand wraps around my wrist and yanks my arm away before I can make contact with the boy — no, with the man — I thought was still in prison.

“Did he hurt you?” Damon’s voice in my ear breaks my dream-like state. I open my mouth to say something and decide against it, swallowing air instead. I shake my head.

“How’d you get on the ground?” Damon asks, shaking me a little.

“She fell down,” Leo says, his arm no longer outstretched. He takes a step away from me, and Jesus, it hurts. He looks anguished. “She dropped the milk and she fell down.” I can’t stop looking at him. I can’t bear to look at him.

The milk has reached me. It seeps across my right knee, curled underneath me; the backs of my thighs, my palms. It’s ice cold, and I can feel myself shaking.

Damon is crouched next to me, his hand on my cheek, diverting my attention to him. “Are you all right, Cassie?” he asks, helping me to my feet, his tone gathering more urgency with each question I don’t answer. Amanda is picking up the milk bottles beside us, piling them high in her arms as I continue to stare at Leo. He’s… different. He has tattoos now. He looks exactly the same but entirely reconstructed. He’s eight years older, I realize. A third of his life, gone. A third of mine. It feels like it’s been forever. It feels like it’s been no time at all.

Deputy Chris appears, looking between me and Leo with uncertainty. Why didn’t anyone tell me? How the hell did Leo just materialize from thin air in the Grill?

“Cassie,” Damon snaps, and I know he means business.

I nod. “I’m fine. I’m okay.” I think of where I was going before I saw fucking Leo. Pills. Purge. “I need a minute.”

“I’ll take you home,” Damon says, his hand on the small of my back as he starts to guide me toward the front doors. I panic, pushing him away.

“You have a missing girl to find,” I say quickly. “I’m fine, really. I just need some aspirin.” And a fucking gun, so I can put myself out of my misery.

“I’ll walk you there,” Damon says, ever the hero. If they only knew, I think to myself, as Amanda opens the staff room door and ushers us inside.

“Give us a minute,” Damon says, giving Amanda a concerned look. She nods, closing the door and waiting out in the hallway as Damon closes the blinds and twists the lock on the door.

“Didn’t think he’d have the balls to show his face in public,” Damon says, and that’s when I understand.

I feel the blood drain from my cheeks as I realize. He knew. He knew Leo would be here today. I ask him with my eyes, searching, imploring. His expression tells me everything.

“You could have warned me,” I whisper.

His eyes narrow. “I considered it. Figured it was better you didn’t know in advance.” He pauses. “Didn’t expect you to fall to your knees in front of him.”

“Fuck you,” I seethe.

Damon’s jaw twitches. “I’m sorry,” he offers, almost as if he’s suggesting an apology rather than delivering one.

I reach for the lock, twisting it and cracking the door open. The temporary quiet we’ve had is pierced by the excited noise of a diner who’s just witnessed the tragic reunion of two star-crossed lovers, or maybe they’re all just gossiping about the missing girl.

“Jennifer,” I hiss at Damon. One word. It works. He shakes his head, his blue eyes fucking burning with anger, but he leaves.

Holy shit. As soon as he’s gone, I close the door again. I don’t bother locking it — who’s going to find me in here? Leo’s long gone if he’s got any sense, and as much as I don’t care about anything, the thought of Amanda having to mop up the milk I spilled makes me so fucking guilty I can barely breathe.

Pills. Purge. Yes.

I go into the staff bathroom, a small tiled square off the main staff room, and start to throw up as soon as the door is closed. I don’t even need to stick my finger down my throat — I’m so full of adrenaline from seeing Leo, I just open my mouth and everything comes out. It’s the kind of vomit that gets in your nose and burns behind your eyes and makes you cry with the way it chokes you.

When I’ve emptied my stomach and I stop gagging, I clean myself up, my head feeling like it might split in two. I’m so hot I think I might burst into flames. I take off my cardigan, my fingers clumsy and damp, and use it to wipe my face.

Pills. Yes. I go back out to the staff room, seeking whatever pharmaceutical bliss I can rummage up from my staff locker. I didn’t switch the overhead lights on when I first came in, and the windowless cave is dim, the only illumination coming from the slightly ajar bathroom door and the fluorescent strips that line its ceiling.

The staff room is empty. Except… it’s not.

Leo. He’s here. Somehow, the only person here with me is the one person I shouldn’t be anywhere near.

He looks at me with eyes that have seen violence since I last gazed into them. I know because I recognize the hardness inside his soul; it matches mine.

My face is a blank canvas, but inside I’m screaming.

Not with fear. With longing. And shame. I want the boy who destroyed everything to pick me up and take me into the bathroom and put his hands all over me. I want him to erase every trace of the last decade. Under my shirt, my nipples stiffen, and shame pools in my belly.

I shouldn’t want to be anywhere near this boy after what he did, but I do.

“I’m sorry,” Leo says. His voice. Oh, God. I don’t remember his voice being that fucking beautiful. It’s deep and full and if it were a food, it’d be honey. He’s not a boy anymore. He’s a man now. A stranger.

His face falls as he gestures to my stomach, concerned. “You have blood on your shirt,” he says, pointing from a safe distance. “Did you cut yourself when you fell?” He looks remorseful. Like he thinks the blood on my shirt is his fault.

My heart sinks. I shake my head tightly, tears springing to my eyes.

“Not my blood,” I say, my voice coming out like a squeak. Leo looks confused.

“The dog,” I stammer. “Rox. She — she—”

“I saw her yesterday,” Leo says, his eyes wide as he looks from my eyes to the blood on my shirt. I didn’t even realize it was there. I’d been wearing my sweater until I took it off just now.

“She’s dead,” I say. “I’m sorry.”

Leo takes a step back. Something passes over his face, a darkness, a fleeting suspicion. “How?” he asks.

I don’t know how to answer that. So I don’t. I push past him and start walking to the kitchen, as fast as I can, because I don’t have an answer for him. My shoulder burns from where I grazed his arm on the way out of the staff room. He might have ruined my life, destroyed my family, taken my future in one careless night — but Leo Bentley still makes me burn like hellfire.

Lili writes dark, delicious romance full of love, lust and revenge. Her USA Today Bestselling Gypsy Brothers series focuses on a morally bankrupt biker gang and the young woman who seeks her vengeance upon them. The Cartel series is a trilogy that explores the beginnings of the club, published through HarperCollins.

Lili quit corporate life to focus on writing and so far is loving every minute of it. Her other loves in life include her gorgeous husband and beautiful daughter, excellent coffee, Tarantino movies and spending hours on Instagram.

She loves to read almost as much as she loves to write.

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Show Me the Way by AL Jackson ~ Excerpt Reveal

The first sexy, captivating, stand-alone novel in the brand-new FIGHT FOR ME series from NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson . . .

Rex Gunner. As bitter as he is beautiful.

The owner of the largest construction company in Gingham Lakes has been burned one too many times. His wife leaving him to raise their daughter was the last blow this single dad could take. The only woman he’ll let into his heart is his little girl.

Rynna Dayne. As vulnerable as she is tempting.

She ran from Gingham Lakes when she was seventeen. She swore to herself she would never return. Then her grandmother passed away and left her the deed to the diner that she once loved.

When Rex meets his new neighbor, he knows he’s in trouble.

She’s gorgeous and sweet and everything he can’t trust.

Until she becomes the one thing he can’t resist.

One kiss sends them tumbling toward ecstasy.

But in a town this size, pasts are bound to collide. Caught in a web of lies, betrayal, and disloyalty, Rex must make a choice.

Will he hide behind his walls or will he take the chance . . .

Coming October 2nd

Cover: RBA Designs

Be notified of LIVE RELEASE on Amazon: http://smarturl.it/liveonamzn

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Tension roiled between us. That tether pulled taut. Drawing us closer. I swallowed around it and reached for the latch. He was quick to open his door, jumping out and rounding to my side before I had time to step out of his massive truck. He helped me down, and his hand scorched where he aided me by holding on to my elbow.

“Let me walk you to the door. Last thing I need to be worried about is you here by yourself and some asshole taking advantage of you.”

He quirked this belly-flopping grin that pierced me like an arrow. “Unless of course that asshole is me.”

He barely angled his head to the side. There was something so endearing and self-deprecating about it. Everything about him right then was at odds with the surly, bear of a man I’d met weeks ago, the man exposing himself, layer by layer.

I lifted my chin, both in strength and vulnerability, tossing all the uncertainties and questions out into the open. “Should I be afraid?”

“Yeah, you should be.” His response was hard, but there was no missing the fact his irritation was aimed at himself. He set his palm on the small of my back, helping me through the gravel drive in my heels, an inch behind as we ascended the porch steps.

We crossed the planks. That tension wound higher with each step until we were nothing but needy pants at my door. Slowly, I turned around to face him.

His presence sent a ripple of energy vibrating across the floorboards, the overwhelming sight of him the owner of my breath.

He stood beneath the faint glow of the hurricane lamp that hung outside the door. A sculpture of sinewy muscle and raw strength, forged through years of obvious physical labor. Every inch of him was rugged, from those roughened, callused hands to the crinkles set deep at the edges of his eyes.

The man was a carving of pure, daunting beauty.

“What exactly am I supposed to be afraid of, Rex?” My brow twisted, and my voice quieted with the admission. “Because when I’m around you, the last thing I feel is afraid.”

“I fuck everything up, Rynna, and the only thing I’ve got to offer you is my mess. I can’t do this.”

Restraint rumbled in his chest, the sound so deep I felt it shake the ground beneath my feet.

I gently cupped one side of his rugged face. “I’m not afraid.”

It was a promise.

An appeal.

“You should be,” he grated. “Warned you, my shit doesn’t ever end well.”

“Maybe that’s a chance I’m willing to take.”

He groaned and he planted his hands high above my head. The man panted above me, torn, desperate, his nose just brushing mine. “God damn it, Rynna. God damn it.”

I felt the moment he broke. When the thread pulled too tight and this mesmerizing man snapped. His mouth descended on mine.

Overpowering.

Overwhelming.

Dizzying.

Lips and tongue and nips of teeth.

And those hands. They were on my face. My neck. My waist. Somehow, I managed to hold on to him and spin away as I fumbled with the lock. He pressed against my backside, his cock against my bottom, and his mouth leaving a trail of fire at the side of my neck. We stumbled into the darkness of my house, breaking apart as I turned to face him.

The only light trickled down from the lamp I’d left on upstairs.

Slowly, he clicked the door shut behind him. We stood there, two feet away from each other, staring.

Chests heaving.

Before we collided.

A tangle of tongues and bodies.

The man frantic, trying to touch me everywhere.

“What am I doing? Fuck, what am I doing?” he muttered incoherently, kissing me deeper. Madder. Wilder.

I pushed up on my toes and tore my mouth from his so I could kiss down the strong column of his throat. His head thudded back against the door, his entire body pressing against it as if he needed it to keep him standing.

He grated my name, and I kept kissing at his throat while I worked free the button on his jeans, hands shaking.

Every reservation spun out of control.

Out of reach.

It was only spurred further when the defined muscles of his abdomen jumped and twitched beneath my touch, when he mumbled, “You’re killing me, Rynna. Fucking killing me.”

Desire rippled from him in heady waves.

And I felt so brave and bold, my kisses brazen as I nipped at the hollow of his throat.

Before I could consider it—the ramifications and the repercussions and the distinct threat to my heart—I dropped to my knees.

I refused to think of anything but setting him free.

Hoping he’d find a little of that freedom in me.

A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad.

Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, and BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for A.L. Jackson’s upcoming novel, SHOW ME THE WAY, the first stand-alone novel in her brand-new FIGHT FOR ME SERIES.

If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.

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Bedroom Hymns by Morgan Reeves ~ Cover and Excerpt Reveal

Today we have the cover reveal for BEDROOM HYMNS by Morgan Reeves! Check it out and pre-order your copy today!

They took me, broke me, remade me in their image. I am branded by their twisted ambitions; martyred by their greed. They ground me down until I was everything they wanted and more, and at the end I thanked them for it.

Jackson.

Dominic.

Cole.

They forced me to love them, and then they cast me aside like yesterday’s trash. But they taught me to be the best. So that’s exactly what they’ll get.

Because in the end…

Revenge is sweeter than love.

And they’ll never see me coming.

Title: BEDROOM HYMNS
Author: Morgan Reeves
Genre: Dark Romance
Release Day: October 11th

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His kiss was hungry. Hot, and sinful, and a whole lot of wicked. It sank down to my soul and tarnished it with every pass of his tongue. And God, how I loved it. He killed me with every kiss, every caress, and I always begged for more. He was my drug of choice, my deadly addiction, and I’d die happy if he just kept touching me. I leaned in closer, forgoing breath for another taste, but he broke the kiss and stepped back.

“Get some sleep, Sophia,” he said quietly. He always made it a point to say my name. I was sure it tasted like victory on his lips. My final fall into his arms, his life. My ultimate submission. I wanted to claw my name onto his skin and brand him as mine. Take that name and reclaim it as a weapon of destruction and power. We’d see how it felt on him then.

Fuck but I loved this man. It would make the pain that much sweeter when I destroyed him.

 

 https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/reeversong/playlist/48HwOfNsWpXkA8JaV4HRyD

Morgan Reeves is the author of the Never Ever After series. When she isn’t writing, Morgan chases around two energetic minions and tries to convince her loving husband that a miniature pig would make a great pet. She is also extremely fond of iced tea and hot coffee. You can find her books on all major retail sites, and she always loves to hear from readers so feel free to send her a message through Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/authormorganreeves. Morgan currently lives in Raleigh, NC.

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The Beautiful Now by M. Leighton ~ EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT

Dane James worked my stepfather’s fields. He was the boy next door.

Strong.
Hardworking.
Forbidden.

From the moment we met, we were star-crossed lovers—always wanting, never having. We loved each other for most of our lives, but right from the beginning destiny had other plans.  She knew we would fall in love.  She knew we would fall apart.  Over and over again, like the curse of a recurring nightmare.  Or the hope of a familiar dream.

Our past was tumultuous.  Our future was bleak.  But the one thing we always had was the beautiful now.

Until that was taken from us, too.

LIVE ALERT: http://smarturl.it/TBNLiveAlert

(15 YEARS OLD)

“Brinkley?” He leaned back on his hand, stretching one leg out in front of him.  His body, bigger than life in that moment, listed toward mine the slightest bit.

“Yeah?”

“Do you think about kissing me?”

I gulped.  For a split second, I considered lying again, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Not over this. “Sometimes it’s all I can think about.”

And it was.

I tried not to think about him, but I did anyway. I thought about him a lot.  More than I would ever have admitted to myself until right then.  I couldn’t seem to help myself.

I watched him at school when no one was looking. I watched him at the bus stop when he couldn’t see me.  I looked for him in the fields when I went out into the front yard.  And I dreamed of him.

More nights than I could count, I dreamed of him.

So yes, I thought about kissing Dane James. I thought about being with Dane James.  For real. In public.  But those were just dreams, too.  Different than reality.

But this—tonight, right now—isn’t a dream.

I was there, alone in the night, with the object of my forbidden desires, and all I wanted was to feel his mouth against mine.

New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, M. Leighton, is a rarely ever comfortable speaking about herself in the third person, but here goes. Michelle is a former nurse who has always harbored a passion for the written word, a weakness for alpha males, and a profound love of all things romantic. Never in her wildest dreams did this Yankee-turned-Southerner imagine her life as it is today. She has the best job in the world, a husband who treats her like a princess, and a dog that’s so smart she may one day write a novel, too. You can often find Michelle hidden away in her cave, crafting a new story, or out in the sunshine enjoying some quiet time with her man. Movies, wine, and good food are frequently thrown into the mix, and exercise on days that start with Q. She loves laughter, chocolate, the color red, and you can find out more about her at http://www.mleightonbooks.com. Sign up for her newsletter here: http://smarturl.it/MLeightonNews She promises not to spam your inbox:)

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Sign up for my newsletter!  Get new release notices, updates, exclusive teasers and giveaway opportunities.  Also, come visit my website, too! Look around, see what you find.

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Also, if you like music, you might like to know that I do, too, and that it plays a big role in my inspiration.  For that reason, I create a playlist for each book I write, adding the songs that inspire me as I go. You can find all my playlists here on Spotify

Dear Bridget, I Want You by Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland ~ Sneak Peek

 Coming from New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Authors

Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland

Dear Bridget,

I’m writing this letter because it’s highly doubtful I’ll ever garner the courage to say this to your face.

So, here goes.

We’re totally wrong for each other. You’re the proper single mum with a good head on your shoulders. I’m just the carefree British doctor passing through town and temporarily living in your converted garage until I head back to England.

But here’s the thing… for some bloody reason, I can’t stop thinking about you in very inappropriate ways.

I want you.

The only reason I’m even admitting all of this to you right now is because I don’t believe it’s one-sided. I notice your eyes when you look at me, too. And as crass as I appear when we’re joking around about sex, my attraction to you is not a joke.

So, what’s the purpose of this note? I guess it’s a reminder that we’re adults, that sex is healthy and natural, and that you can find me just through the door past the kitchen. More specifically, it’s to let you know that I’m leaving said door cracked open from now on in case you’d like to visit me in the middle of the night sometime.

No questions asked.

Think about it.

Or don’t.

Whatever you choose.

It’s doubtful I’ll even end up sliding this letter under your door anyway.

–Simon

Dear Bridget, I Want You will be available on all platforms on September 18th!

Pre-orders are available at the following:
iBooks | B&N | Kobo | Google Play | Amazon PAPERBACK

There is no Amazon eBook preorder. Will go live on Amazon on release day.
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Every time I considered leaving my room, I would grab the framed picture of Ben and stare at it.  The urge to go to Simon was so strong; I basically hadn’t put down the framed photo of my deceased husband in an hour.  I was lying in my bed, holding a picture of a dead man while fantasizing about one who was very much alive and in the other room.  With the door cracked open waiting for me.  There was one part of Simon’s note that I just kept reading over and over.

I want to make you come. Hard. I want you to get lost in me and I want to hear you say my name over and over while we fuck.

While we fuck.

While we fuck.

I was pretty sure that Ben had never used the word fuck like that before.  Did we even fuck?  We made love, sure.  Our sex life was normal—at least, I think it was normal.  Don’t get me wrong, the passion wasn’t the same as when we first got together.  But after ten years, both of us working full time and raising a child, it was normal to have some of the desire dwindle, wasn’t it?

While we fuck.

I looked at the picture of my husband and sighed.  We didn’t fuck.  Not even in the beginning.   And I felt guilty for that now.  Maybe we should have been fucking.  I certainly didn’t do anything to entice him to want me the last few years.  Was it my fault our sex life had gotten boring?  I rested the picture of Ben over my heart and laid my hand over it.  I could feel my heart beating out of control beneath my fingers.

Shutting my eyes, I tried to force thoughts of Simon from my mind.  But it was no use.  Visions of his hard, sculpted body hovering over me had infiltrated my brain.  So, here I was, a thirty-three-year-old, single mother lying in my bed all alone with a picture of my dead husband held to my heart while I visualized fucking another man.

Fucking.

Not making love.

I needed my head examined.

After two hours and no sleep in sight, I decided the only way I was going to be able to get any rest was if I got everything I was feeling off of my chest.  Flicking on the light, I carefully set the framed photo of my beloved Ben on my nightstand and then opened the drawer and dug out a pen and piece of pretty stationery.  I would write down my thoughts to clear my mind.  I had no intention of actually giving the letter to Simon, so there was no reason to filter anything I said.

Dear Simon…

★★★★

We hope you enjoyed this preview!

 

Penelope Ward

Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of thirteen novels. With over a million books sold, her titles have placed on the New York Times Bestseller list seventeen times. She is the proud mother of a beautiful 12-year-old girl with autism (the inspiration for the character Callie in Gemini) and a 10-year-old boy. Penelope, her husband, and kids reside in Rhode Island.

 Facebook | Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook Fan Page

 Vi Keeland

Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author. With more than a million books sold, her titles have appeared in over fifty Bestseller lists and are currently translated in fourteen languages. She lives in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.

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Dirty Little Secret by Kendall Ryan ~ Excerpt Reveal

The start to a sexy new series from New York Times bestselling author, Kendall Ryan…

She’s much too innocent for me, but that doesn’t stop me from wanting the sweet, young librarian. I’m dominating and possessive, and my control streak runs a mile wide.

The way she looks at me—like I’m one of the heroes in the books she loves, like I’m broken, and she wants to be the one to piece me back together—it only complicates things further. I’m nobody’s hero.

But there’s no denying my tragic past reads like one of her favorite literary classics. It’s raw. Visceral. Captivating. And together, we’re a perfect mess.

How am I expected to resist when the sexual sparks zap between us and set me on fire? The need to control, and claim her force my walls to come tumbling down, but when she learns my dirty little secret, will my world come crashing down with it?

Dirty Little Secret releases September 14th.

The story continues in Dirty Little Promise, releasing October 30th.

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“Emma could be the perfect companion, don’t you think?” I turned to face his desk, where he still sat.

He rolled his eyes, and I swooped in for the kill. He’d had his chance. I’d given it to him on a silver platter. Which meant that the coast was clear. If he didn’t want her . . .

“So, you don’t mind if I take her to the Bennett Foundation gala?” I raised my eyebrows.

Gavin’s brow furrowed but his eyes went ice cold, his pause saying far more than his words. “Of course not. Why would I mind?”

Bullshit.

Maybe this little push was just what he needed to get his head out of his ass.

I nodded. “Good.”

His mouth turned down a notch, and I could tell he was thinking. Processing.

For a moment, I didn’t think he was going to take the bait. But then, I knew my brother. I’d laid down a challenge, questioned why he was so adamantly against the idea of hiring her, and although he didn’t want to open up and share, this topic was far from over. Our calendars were slammed, and we both knew it. His assistant had joked just that morning that it would make her job a hell of a lot easier if we each just found a girlfriend. Gavin had scoffed so hard, I thought he was going to bust an artery.

Gavin heaved out a sharp exhale. “What makes you so interested in her, anyway? I thought they were all a number on a paycheck to you?”

I shrugged. “They are until they’re not. You, of all people, should know—”

“Enough,” Gavin barked.

“Right.” I shoved my hands in my pockets. “Shame, though. Seems like there’s something . . . interesting between you two.” Briefly, I wondered if they had a history. “Anything you want to tell me?”

“No, but I have a question for you,” he snapped back with a lethal smile that didn’t reach his narrowed eyes. “What the fuck are you still doing in my office?”

“Trying to find out whether you’re going to let me have this one, or if we’re going to be fighting for the same prize,” I answered honestly.

Gavin looked up from his screen. “Are you high?” His mouth thinned into a firm, chiseled line. “If you want her, take her. I’m not playing with her like she’s a chew toy.”

“Okay. But that doesn’t change the fact that you need a date to the charity auction. A girl like her on your arm? Imagine the business we could do. She’s like a walking commercial. And when you’re done rubbing elbows with all the fancy people, I’ll take her off your hands for a couple of events of my own. Use your head, man, she’s perfect. The girl every guy wants to be seen with. Sweet enough to bring home to Mother, hot enough to imagine her on her knees, with that mouth—”

“Got it,” Gavin snapped. He stared at a point on the ceiling, then blew out an annoyed sigh. “If I take her to the fucking auction, will you stop, already?”

“Yup.”

“I’ll tell you right now, though, if this is business, neither of us are sleeping with her.”

I bit back a laugh but nodded anyway. If that was what Gavin wanted to tell himself, I wasn’t about to stop him. Fact was, though, if she would have either of us, we’d probably get our dicks caught in our zippers in the rush to get our pants off. Telling him that would only make him change his mind, and I’d gotten what I wanted.

If this girl had my big brother this riled up? She was something special. And no matter what he thought of himself, he deserved something special in his life again. If I had to agree to take her out as well just to get him to go along with it, so be it.

It wasn’t exactly a hardship, after all.

 

A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of more than two dozen titles, Kendall Ryan has sold over 1.5 million books and her books have been translated into several languages in countries around the world. She’s a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and Harper Collins UK, as well as an independently published author. Since she first began self-publishing in 2012, she’s appeared at #1 on Barnes & Noble and iBooks charts around the world. Her books have also appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than three dozen times. Ryan has been featured in such publications as USA Today, Newsweek, and InTouch Magazine.

Visit her at: www.kendallryanbooks.com for the latest book news, and fun extras

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The Outskirts by TM Frazier ~ Excerpt Reveal

The Swamp is about to get a whole lot hotter! The Outskirts by T.M. Frazier is coming September 12th!

Sawyer wants a life of her own.

Finn wants to forget he ever had one.

 

After a tragedy, Finn Hollis escapes

into the swamp to be alone.

That is until Sawyer Dixon shows up,

all SCORCHING HOT innocence,

claiming she owns the land less than

fifty feet from his front door.

 

Sawyer gets under his SKIN, but even worse?

She makes him WANT things.

Things Finn hasn’t wanted in a very very long time.

 

Finn WANTS Sawyer gone.

Almost as much as he wants her in his BED.

 

The Outskirts is Book One in the Outskirts Duet.
Release Date: September 12th, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance

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~ WILL BE AVAILABLE IN KINDLE UNLIMITED~

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Sawyer

My throat tightened and a heaviness grew in my chest like my heart didn’t know whether to beat faster or stop beating altogether. “Did you leave me all this to show me the life you could’ve had, but didn’t? Why!?” I pounded the wheel again and then again, and again and again until my vision was blurry and all I could see was the redness of my own heated rage. “You’re a fucking coward! You fucking COWARD!” I screamed to no one, pounding on the wheel until the skin across my knuckles split and blood dripped between my fingers.

Strong hands bit into my biceps, yanking me from the cab. I was spun around by my shoulders and found myself face to face with Finn. “I like it when you swear,” he said, pressing close.

“Finn, get off me! Get off me! Let me go!” I wailed, struggling to free myself from his grip. Kicking out my legs only to connect with the air as he evaded my every move.

A growl tore from his throat. Finn picked me up and walked me to the back of the truck, setting me on the open tailgate. He pushed himself between my legs and hovered over me to keep me from leaping off.

“Let me go,” I demanded, pushing at his hard chest. “I don’t have time for your broodiness right now.”

Finn held my wrists together with one hand. “No, of course you don’t. You’re too busy tearing up pictures and screaming at no one.”

“Let me go,” I repeated.

“No,” he said between clenched teeth.

“Just go! Leave me alone. Leave meeeeeee!” I wailed as I pounded against his stone chest.

“You don’t want to hit me,” he warned, his eyes hardened.

“Then let me go.”

“Why?” He stepped in closer, unaffected by my attempt to fight against him. My inner thighs were touching his outer thighs.

“Because she did!” I screamed, my eyes sprang open to find his cold blue gaze. “She could have run anywhere and taken me with her. Instead she left him but she left me too. She was a coward who couldn’t make the right decision and I love her. I love her…but I hate her. I hate her so much…so…” I was interrupted when Finn’s lips pressed against mine, momentarily rendering me stupid. I pointed my toes toward the sky to avoid my initial instinct which was to wrap my legs around him. It was so consuming that I momentarily forgot to fight him off, but I didn’t need to, he pulled his lips from mine.

“Stop doing that,” I said. I pushed him off but he stayed between my legs, his hands on my bare back just under the hem of his big t-shirt I was wearing. His gaze hardened. I could see the conflict written in his lined forehead and the deep V between his eyes. I had no doubt the conflict had everything to do with me.

And kissing me.

“It’s your fault that I do it,” Finn said, his voice deep and smooth against my chin and then my neck.

“So that’s your plan? Kiss me every time you want to shut me up?” I asked, still feeling every bit of my anger but also feeling something else. Something that sent tingles between my legs and an ache in my core. “Thank you for saving me. Really. Thank you. I appreciate it,” my voice cracked. “But you can just leave me alone now. And please, STOP kissing me.” My words a whisper.

“I’m going to kiss you whenever I want to kiss you,” Finn stated as if I didn’t have a say in the matter.

The early morning sunlight highlighted the beads of sweat trickling from his shoulders down his broad chest and across the valleys of his defined abs. He was standing so close that we were breathing in each other’s air.

“Whenever you want to kiss me?” I laughed. “I don’t understand you. I don’t understand any of this. You’re always mad at me. Why did you save me? Why do you keep kissing me when you’re always mad at me?”

“It’s when I’m pissed off at you that I want to kiss you the most,” Finn said, his voice flowing over my skin like a silky blanket. He slid me closer so I could feel the outline of his rigid erection as if he were proving a point. He lowered his lips to mine and consumed my mouth in a greedy kiss that had me shaking with need and spinning with confusion.

“Do you always kiss everyone you hate?” I asked, yanking my lips from his.

“Does this feel like hate to you?” he growled pushing his hard length between my legs.

T.M.Frazier is a USA TODAY bestselling author. She resides in sunny Southwest Florida with her husband and her young daughter.

When she’s not writing she loves talking to her readers, country music, reading and traveling. Her debut novel, The Dark Light of Day was published in September of 2013 and when she started writing it she intended for it to be a light beachy romance.

Well…it has a beach in it!

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