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Saturday, July 22, 2017























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Matthew

Drafted first round pick when I was seventeen, playing first line at eighteen, branded NHL's bad boy at nineteen. At twenty-three I was cut from the team and living back home with my parents. A knock on the door brought an opportunity I couldn’t turn down. All I had to do was prove I learned from my mistakes, so no way would I fall for a chick with a pouty mouth even if I wanted to spend all day devouring it.

Karrie

When my father gave me a job, I had no idea it would be to babysit some washed up NHL player. He wanted me to be his chaperone, his overpaid babysitter. I thought it was a joke. Then I met him, Matthew Grant. I wasn’t prepared for this particular bad boy. He’s not only hot but he’s arrogant and kinda sweet in a 'you make me crazy' kind of way.
Basically now that he’s finished screwing up his life, he’s decided to turn mine upside down.


She’s the first thing I’ve ever wanted more than hockey.

He’s the guy I know I should stay away from.

But what if this thing that started out so wrong turns into something so perfect?


























   Matthew Cooper Stone is my stepfather, the Cooper Stone who’s the best person to ever skate. He holds every single record that’s out there because he’s just that fucking good.
   “What the fuck are you doing?”
   I didn’t even have a chance to say hello before Cooper’s voice filled the room. I groaned and turned over to see that he was on speakerphone. My finger must have touched it by accident. “Matthew, seriously, I’m one second from flying out there and yanking you off the fucking ice.”
    I was twenty-one and already being benched and scratched.
   I was no chump. I was drafted first over all. The day still played in my mind. “The Los Angeles Royals choose Matthew Grant.” The minute my name was said, I sat there in shock while my little sister was yelling and my mother, Parker, had tears running down her cheeks while her face lit up with happiness and pride. Cooper was the first to grab me and stand me up.
   “Go get that fucking jersey.” His voice was loud in my ear. My mother was next. “I’m so proud of you, Matthew, so, so proud.”
   I kissed her cheek and walked down the stairs toward the stage from where the general manager, the owner, and the coach all looked at me. When I walked on stage, I tried to hold my tears in.
   Taking the owner’s hand in mine, I shook it and thanked him. Putting that jersey on was surreal. Posing for pictures was a blur. I got so drunk that night I don’t remember much, except Cooper having to carry me inside while I pledged my love to my mother, my sister, and the trees around us.
   Usually, once you get drafted, you start off on their farm team, but not me. I was on the starting line. I was up to my ears in silicone. There would be a different girl every night, everyone wanting to get a piece of me. The star of the team. Then my game started to slip. The late nights took a toll on me and my body. Three years later, I was sent down to the farm team. You’d think I would wake up, but no, not me. I just partied harder. I was on the front page of almost every single tabloid magazine that you could think of.
   Every single summer I went back home, spending the time training hard with Cooper riding my ass, promising him that I was out of the party phase, but the minute my feet landed back in L.A., it was back to the booze and the puck bunnies. Another three years later, I was put on wavers. When no one picked me up, I packed up and went back home. For two years, I played hockey at home in charity games, till the GM from the New York Stingers came knocking at my door. Robert Western.
   Cooper, Mom, and I sat down with him. My hands shook with nerves, my legs bouncing with happiness that someone actually wanted me.
  “We want to offer him a one-year contract, with certain rules.” He eyed me and then Cooper. I knew Cooper had called in a favor.
   “What is it?” I asked, holding my breath.
   “Chaperone.”
    I was about to get up and say fuck that when Cooper put his hand on mine and blurted out, “He’ll do it.”
   I looked at him while he glared at me. My mother put a hand on top of her husband’s. United. Always.
   Robert slapped his hands together. “Matthew, you, my friend, are going to bring another cup to New York.” He got up to shake my hand and then Cooper’s, slapping him on the arm. “Who knows, you may also knock this asshole off a throne or two.”
   Cooper laughed out loud, but I knew he would be the one egging me on, the one daring me to push him off. He would also be the first one coming to congratulate me if I ever did it.
   He had come into my life when I’d needed a male figure the most. I just hadn’t known it. He showed me that you can fall in love with your whole heart and everything will fall into place. He showed me that you fight for what you want. But most of all, he showed me that love is a gift and once it’s given, you cherish it.
   So now here I am on the plane getting ready to land in New York. I have to meet the owner of the team and the PR people tomorrow at noon. I scroll through my social media sites while I wait for the doors to open. My sister is tagging me in old photos of us from Mom and Cooper’s wedding. Feels like it was just yesterday. When you see the way Cooper looks at my mother, you know he loves her with all his heart. He would walk to the ends of the earth for her.
   I press the heart emoji on the picture and then hear the ping of the seat belt sign telling us we can stand up. I grab my leather jacket and slide it on, put on my aviators, and grab my leather duffel bag. Walking out of the plane, I nod at the two flight attendants, who both slipped me their numbers. Numbers I left in the side of the seat.
   Fresh start. It’s time to make my parents proud of me. Time to show the world that Matthew Grant is here for good this time.
   On my way to my hotel in Times Square, I look out the window of the yellow cab zigzagging its way through traffic. Nothing in the world beats the cab drivers in New York City. You sit back and hold your breath while you pray to not end up being slammed forward. We reach the W hotel. I swipe my card through the card holder in the back, thanking him. I don’t even have time to close the door before he races off from the curb.
   I enter and check in without having anything to say. The woman at reception starts going through her routine talk. I cut in. “What floor is the gym on?”
   She smiles at me, telling me the information while giving me her private number in case I have any other questions.
   I nod at her and then walk up to my room. It’s the size of a closet. Welcome to New York. I take my phone out to send a text to Cooper.     
   Landed. Going to work out.
   Be good.
   I’m always good.
   Okay, then behave.
   I laugh and throw the phone on the bed, and then get my workout clothes out of the bag. I grab my headphones and make my way to the gym.
   I have texts from Allison, my sister, and Tom, who is married to my aunt Meghan and is an ex-NHLer, wishing me luck. But the one that makes me laugh out loud is from my Aunt Meghan, telling me that my dick won’t fall off if I don’t use it. I’m about to answer her when the elevator beeps, signaling I have arrived at the gym floor.
   I walk to the gym and scan my card so I can get in. Usually, these hotel gyms are almost empty, but not this time. A girl is jogging on the treadmill, but I don’t make eye contact with her.
   Grabbing a towel from the basket in the corner, I walk over to the other treadmill, look down at the buttons, and turn it on.
   I start off slow while Drake fills my ears, but that doesn’t last long before I crank it up and push myself hard. I’m in the best shape of my life, thanks to my mom, Cooper, and Tim. They didn’t let me sit down and drown my sorrows in bonbons and booze. They had my ass skating at the crack of dawn. In the gym pushing and pulling. Meaning I’m the biggest I’ve ever been. My shoulders are wider, my waist leaner, my arms bigger.
   I’m sweating up a storm, so I look over to see if the girl is still running on the treadmill, which is my first mistake. Not only is she next to me running as fast as me, but she’s in a sports bra holding up a perfect set of tits, her stomach bare, her abs defined but looking soft, and her little booty shorts not keeping anything back. She isn’t tall. Her blond hair swings in the air while she’s looking at the iPad she has in front of her. Is she watching the Kardashians? Jesus. She must sense me watching her because she looks over, which is when I feel the earth move under my feet. Her eyes are crystal blue, so blue it’s like I’m looking into the ocean. I almost trip over my own two feet, but I recover and smile at her. I turn my head forward and continue running till my legs feel like they’re going to snap in two.
   Getting off the treadmill, I whip my soaking shirt off and throw it over my shoulder before I grab a water bottle and drain it all. I notice she’s slowing her speed. She shuts off the treadmill, dabbing her face with the towel that she has near her. She takes the water bottle, drinking in a good amount.
   I start to walk out of the room when she gets off the treadmill. I stop right before we collide with each other, then put out my hand, giving her the right of way.
   “Thanks,” she says, her voice soft, sweet, pure.
   Following her out, I watch her ass swing in front of me. I don’t even notice she stops and I crash into her, grabbing her shoulders and making sure she doesn’t fall on her face because I was staring at her ass. “I’m sorry, I was…” I’m sure I don’t have to say anything to her because my cock is nestled in her back.
   She shrugs my hands off her shoulders while she presses the elevator button. We stand here not saying anything while we wait. What can you say? Sorry my dick poked your back? Sorry I was watching your sweet ass instead of watching where I was going? Silence is golden right now.
   When the elevator arrives, I wait for her to walk in before entering and see that we are on the same floor. Great. The ride lasts no longer than a second before the door opens and she sprints out, away from the crazy pervert who poked his dick into her back. I head to my door and see she’s in the room right next to mine. I want to say something, anything, but by the time I look up, she’s already in the safety of her own room.  
















When her nose isn't buried in a book, or her fingers flying across a keyboard writing, she's in the kitchen creating gourmet meals. You can find her, in four inch heels no less, in the car chauffeuring kids, or possibly with her husband scheduling his business trips. It's a good thing her characters do what she says, because even her Labrador doesn't listen to her...

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Friday, July 21, 2017

   

From New York Times bestselling author Kristen Proby comes a sexy, new standalone contemporary romance in her Fusion Series, THE BEAUTY OF US, releasing August 22, 2017! Check out the chapter below and get to know Trevor and Riley!

   

About THE BEAUTY OF US:

New York Times bestselling author Kristen Proby delivers another sizzling novel in her delectable and sexy Fusion series.

Riley Gibson is over the moon at the prospect of having her restaurant, Seduction, on the Best Bites TV network. This could be the big break she’s been waiting for. But the idea of having an in-house show on a regular basis is a whole other matter. Their lives would be turned upside down, and convincing Mia, her best friend and head chef of Seduction, that having cameras in her kitchen every day is a good idea is daunting. Still, Riley knows it’s an opportunity she can’t afford to pass on. And when she meets Trevor Cooper, the show’s executive producer, she’s stunned by their intense chemistry.

Trevor’s sole intention is to persuade Riley to allow Best Bites TV to do a show on her restaurant. But when he walks into Riley’s office, he stops dead in his tracks. The professional, aloof woman on the phone is incredibly beautiful and funny. But can he convince her that he’s interested in Riley for himself? Or is he using the undeniable pull between them to persuade her to agree to his offer?

 

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        Chapter 2 ~Trevor~ I didn’t sleep worth shit last night. I waited for a response to my e-mail from Riley for a while; I’m not exactly sure why. I just don’t like the thought of her being embarrassed. Because she has no reason to be. She didn’t know who I was, and it was closing time. She was venting to her friends. It’s really no big deal. But I could see the mortification in her big blue eyes when she realized who I was, and that doesn’t sit well with me. When no response came, and for all I know she hasn’t even read the e-mail yet, I sat down for a game on the PS4. I don’t travel anywhere without it. Some people read to unwind. Some go to the gym, and there are times I do the same. But to truly relax, I enjoy gaming. I have since I was a kid. So I settled in the apartment the network has rented for me this month and played online with my friends, talking about our days and shooting the enemy. We played well past midnight, and I usually would have gone right to bed afterward, but my mind was still turning, making falling asleep impossible. The restaurant is better than I imagined through my research on their website and customer reviews. It’s visually stunning, the food is fantastic, and they’ve hit the mark on the sexy factor. But added to that, the five women who own the place are all beautiful, smart, and will make for great TV. Viewers will eat this show up, pun intended. I lean over the sink and wash my face, not bothering to shave today, and as I dry off, I reach for my phone. I have several new e-mails. The most recent is from Riley Gibson. Trevor, Thank you for your kind email. I apologize again for the conversation last night. I would like to promise that we don’t always talk like that at work, but that would be a lie. At least we keep it to closing time over a glass of wine. Enjoy Portland, Riley I grin and sling the towel over my bare shoulders. Riley isn’t what I had pictured in my head before I got here. I knew that she was pretty because their photos are on their website, but she’s much prettier in person. And animated. Working with her will be fun. And a test to my libido. Because Riley is fucking sexy. I’ve never mixed business and sex before, and I don’t plan to start now, but keeping my hands off her will be a test of wills. And that too should be fun. After my run this morning, I stopped by a bagel place to eat and read a newspaper, came back to the apartment for a shower, and I think I’ll go to Seduction for lunch. I hadn’t planned to go back there until my meeting with Riley tomorrow, but I also haven’t had lunch there yet. I dress quickly in jeans and a red T-shirt and walk the six or so blocks to the restaurant. They’ve just opened, so they’re not busy yet. The atmosphere is calm, the lighting a bit brighter than last night, making it a fun spot to meet with colleagues or friends for lunch. I’m seated on the far side of the restaurant, where it meets the bar, and I can see Riley and the other women sitting around a high table, talking. Loud enough for me to hear. “So, he’ll be here tomorrow. Filming doesn’t start for another week, unless the timetable has been moved up,” Riley says, studying her iPad and checking things off a list. “It would be great if we could watch our language.” “Right,” Mia says, rolling her eyes. “Because that’s gonna happen.” “Just watch the F-bombs then,” Riley says with a grin. “And I’ll do my best not to vent to him about my horrible dating experiences. Not that I’ll be having any more of those.” “I wish I’d been here for that,” Addie says with a smile. “It’s hilarious.” “No, it’s not,” Riley says, but smiles and covers her lips with her fingers. “Okay, it’s a little funny. I’ll be working from home today.” “Why?” The blonde speaking, I presume Cami, asks. “Because I have a roofer coming today,” Riley says. “But if you need me, just call. I can come back after he leaves.” “Go.” Mia waves her off. “We’ve got this.” The girls all stand, about to go their own ways to get their day started. They’re clearly good friends, which will come across well on film. Riley walks out of the bar and glances up, spotting me. “Hi.” I offer her a smile and motion for her to join me. She sits, sets her iPad aside, and squares her shoulders. I love a woman with grit. “Why are you here?” she asks. “I’m having lunch,” I reply, and gesture to the salad sitting in front of me. “It’s delicious. Adding the brussels sprouts is smart.” “I’ll pass that along to Mia,” she says, and then laughs. “I guess you heard the part where I asked the girls to not swear.” “I did,” I reply, and patiently butter a piece of warm bread. “Don’t worry about that stuff. They’re adults.” “With potty mouths,” she says. “And we can bleep stuff out, or ask them to rephrase. You’ve already got the gig, Riley. I wouldn’t be here otherwise. This isn’t an audition.” “I know.” She sighs and reaches over to take a piece of my bread, surprising and delighting me. “I just want things to go smoothly.” “Perhaps you should order lunch too.” “I don’t have time,” she says, and then her blue eyes widen as she realizes what she just did. “I’m so sorry. I eat when I’m stressed out, and I didn’t—” “No.” I hold my hand up to stop her. “It’s fine. I like that you’re relaxed with me. I think you need to relax more often.” “What are you, my life coach now?” “If you like. Did you cancel those dating sites like I suggested?” She bites her lip and looks to the side, then nods. “I did.” “Good.” I take a bite of salad and nod. “Are you sure you don’t want some food?” “I rarely have time to eat,” Riley says, and checks the time on her phone. “In fact, I should go. I have to meet the roofer at my house.” “What’s wrong with your roof?” “It’s old,” she says with a shrug. “That’s what happens when you buy an old house. I’m fixing it up a little at a time.” I nod, and find that I don’t want her to go quite yet. I want to talk more, to learn more about her. “Why don’t you come to my apartment tonight and I’ll cook you dinner?” She pauses and stares at me for a moment. “Why?” I laugh and set my fork down. “Because I asked you to. We’re going to be working closely over the next few weeks, we might as well get to know each other a little better. Also, we can discuss my new duties as your life coach.” “Well.” Her lips twitch as she thinks it over for a moment, a myriad of emotions moving across her beautiful face, and finally she says, “Okay. Do you mind texting me the address and the time?” “Not at all,” I reply, and immediately pass her my phone. “Plug in your number and I’ll text you this afternoon.” She complies, passes it back, and smiles. “Okay, see you later.” And with that, she’s off. Her ass swaying enticingly in her tight skirt, calves flexing from the height of her heels, and the food I’m currently chewing immediately tastes like cardboard. Jesus. And I just voluntarily offered to spend time with her. Alone. I’m a fucking glutton for punishment. [no ornament] “I’m starving,” Riley immediately says as I open the door. She’s in jeans and a well-loved University of Oregon sweatshirt, her hair is pulled up in a ponytail, and she looks like she could be a co-ed herself. “I forgot to eat today.” “Does that happen every day?” I ask as I gesture for her to come inside and close the door behind her. “Most days,” she admits. “Is this one of those bad choices that you’re gonna coach me through?” “Yes,” I reply, and lead her into the kitchen. “You have to eat.” “I know, I just get focused on other things, and the next thing I know, the day is gone and I’m starving.” She passes me two bottles of wine. “I didn’t know what we were having, so I brought red and white.” “Thanks.” I grin and set them both on the counter. “I made salmon and asparagus with baby red potatoes. What goes best with that?” Her eyes light up. “The white. Holy shit, are you a chef yourself?” “I went to culinary school,” I reply, and squeeze some lemon on the salmon before plating it. “But I discovered I was better at a desk job.” “That’s unusual,” she says, her head tilted to the side as she listens. “Most people fight to get out of a desk job.” “Not me. I have a ton of respect for Mia, because being a chef isn’t easy, and pleasing people sucks.” “True.” Riley nods. “She doesn’t get many plates sent back to her, but there are a few. Can I pour you a glass?” “No thanks,” I reply, and reach in the fridge for a bottle of water. “I don’t drink alcohol.” “Oh.” She frowns. “I’m sorry. I can drink water too.” “It’s fine,” I reply, and pat her shoulder. “I don’t mind if you drink. I just don’t.” “But last night, you were drinking Jack and Coke.” “Nope, just Coke.” She sits at the table, still frowning. “I’m sorry.” “There’s nothing to be sorry for.” I set our plates down. “I’ve been sober for ten years. I’m not the kind of alcoholic who can’t be around others having a drink. It was never that bad for me. I’m just a better person if I don’t drink.” “Good for you for knowing that,” she says, holding her glass out to clink against my water. “This looks delicious.” “You sound surprised.” “I expected pizza or Chinese takeout,” she says. “Honestly, that’s probably what you would have gotten from me. I’m also surprised that you’re not staying in a hotel.” “I’m here long enough that the network sprung for the apartment. They usually do when I’m somewhere longer than a week or so.” “You must travel a lot for this job,” she says, eating her food like a starving child. I don’t know if she even tastes it, she’s eating so fast. “I travel often,” I reply, and grin when she takes the last bite. “Are you going to lick the plate?” “Maybe,” she says with a grin. “I’m not even embarrassed that I ate that so fast. It was delicious.” “I’m glad you liked it. There’s more.” “No, I’m good,” she says, and reaches in her bag, pulling out a pad of paper and a pen. “You can eat while I interview you.” “For what?” “For the position of life coach,” she says with a sassy grin. I want to kiss that grin right off her face, but instead I take a bite of potato and gesture for her to begin. “Okay, first question: What qualifications do you have that make you a good fit for this position?” “Well, I have a few years on you, so I would say wisdom with age.” She tilts her head to the side, the way she does when she’s turning something over in her head. “You can’t be that much older than me.” “I’m thirty-seven.” “Seven years,” she says, rolling her eyes. “A lot can happen in seven years,” I reply, and sip my water. “Okay, I’ll give you that.” She checks something off on her paper. “Did you really write down questions?” “Of course. I’m the queen of lists and the roofer was at my house forever.” She bites her lip as she looks at her list. “How many women have you life-coached in the past?” “Well, I didn’t have an official job title, but I have two younger sisters, and an ex-wife, so I would say three.” “But the wife is an ex, so maybe that did go well?” Riley asks. “And are your sisters productive members of society?” “As opposed to being in jail?” I ask, laughing. “You’re hilarious, Riley.” “You didn’t answer the question.” “My sisters are great. The older one is married, a stay-at-home mom with two kids, and the younger one is a waitress.” “But the ex-wife thing didn’t work out.” “She’s not a mess, we just both decided that she shouldn’t be my wife anymore.” “Why?” I sit back in my chair and wipe my mouth on my napkin. “Because she thought it was a good idea to have sex with other men.” Her eyebrows climb on her forehead and she blinks twice. “That’s a good reason.” “I thought so.” “Okay, next question.” She checks something on her paper and looks up at me with a smile. “How do you intend to be compensated for your work?” “I’m working pro bono,” I reply with a wink. “Why?” “Because I’m going to be here anyway, and why not.” I shrug and finish the food on my plate. “What else do you want to know?” “Is my coming to a virtual stranger’s apartment by myself one of the bad decisions you should have coached me on?” I smile and set my plate aside so I can lean on the table. “Did the girls tell you that coming here by yourself was a bad idea?” “I only talked to Cami and she thought I should come. Plus, I have a concealed carry, so I feel pretty confident that I’m safe.” I raise a brow and cross my arms over my chest. “You carry a gun with you?” “Hell to the yes,” she replies, and offers me a sweet smile. “I’ve been meeting strange men on the Internet. You bet your ass I’ve been armed.” “Good idea,” I reply with a nod. “There are a lot of crazies out there.” “Yes. But I think that if you’re gonna meet a crazy, it could be anywhere. Online, in a bar, at the gas station. They’re everywhere.” “That’s true too,” I reply, and nod. “Well, I’m glad you’re being cautious.” “I’m nobody’s victim,” she says, as casually as if she’s telling me her shoe size. That’s fucking sexy. “Do you have any other questions?” “Not really,” she says, and shrugs. “I didn’t really write anything down. But it was fun to interrogate you a bit.” “Now I have questions,” I reply, and smile when she cocks her head and purses her lips. “Do you really think you need a life coach?” “No, I have my shit together,” she says with a grin. “Why were you really on all of those sites?” She shrugs. “Because it’s not easy meeting people. And sometimes a girl wants to go out on a date.” “You don’t need me,” I reply, and smile. “But I’ll be around for a while, just in case.” “Just in case I slip and fall back into the online dating?” “That, or if you just want to have dinner, or chat. And I think we should watch a marathon of Star Wars. Your lack of knowledge is cause for concern.” “It’s kind of a guy thing,” she says. “I know many women who like Star Wars.” “Well, I would watch one or two.” “You need to see them all to understand what’s happening.” “That’s a lot of hours of my life that I’ll never get back,” she says with a frown. “Aren’t there CliffsNotes somewhere? A speedy way to get caught up?” “No,” I reply, and fist my hands in my lap so I don’t reach out and tuck her hair behind her ear. Or yank her against me so I can kiss the fuck out of her. “Are you okay?” she asks. “Are you always this observant?” “I’m an overthinker,” she says. “So yeah, I’m an observer.” “I’ve been labeled an overthinker too,” I say with a grin. “Would you say it’s an accurate assessment?” “Oh yeah,” I say with a nod, and stand to clear our plates away. She stands to help. “I’ve got this.” “No way, you cooked, so I’ll help clean.” She walks ahead of me, her empty glass in one hand and her plate in the other. “Do you use the dishwasher, or do you wash by hand?” “There are people who still wash by hand?” “I’ve heard of them, but I’ve never seen them in the wild,” she says, and smiles up at me when I join her. “So I guess that means we use the dishwasher?” “Yes.” She rinses and I load, and a few short minutes later, we’re done. “Well, I suppose I should go,” she says, and checks the time on her phone. “Oh, Cami texted. I guess I should reply so she doesn’t think you killed me after the entrĂ©e.” She smirks and types on her phone, then turns it off and looks up at me. “Thanks for dinner.” “You’re welcome.” “I’ll see you tomorrow morning.” Unfortunately, it won’t be in my bed. “You will.” “Okay.” She gathers her bag, notepad and pen, and walks to the door. “Sleep well tonight.” I grin and congratulate myself for not dragging my fingertips down her cheek. “You sleep well tonight, Riley.” “Okay. Bye.” She leaves and I close the door, letting out a slow breath. Jesus, she’s sexy and funny and smart as fuck. And I’m not going to touch her while I’m here. How the fuck am I going to do that?  

Don’t miss the first chapter of THE BEAUTY OF US! You can read it here!

    About Kristen Proby: New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.   Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.    

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We are excited to bring you the upcoming standalone from New York Times, USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author Penelope Ward.

DRUNK DIAL will release on AUGUST 21!

   
Cover designer: Letitia Hasser, RBA designs
Cover Model: Vadim Ivanov
Cover Photography: Kevin Roldan
  From New York Times bestselling author Penelope Ward, comes a new, sexy standalone novel. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Look up Landon Roderick, that boy from childhood whom I’d never been able to forget—even though he so easily forgot about me—and call him. Then again, anything sounds like a good idea when you’ve had a little too much wine before bed, right? It was supposed to be just a quick, meaningless, prank call. Instead, I went off on him—unloading thirteen years of pent-up emotions. I didn’t think he’d call me back. I certainly could never have anticipated the weeks of sexually tense phone conversations that followed as I got to know the man he’d become. Turned out, Landon had never really forgotten me, either. That special connection we had was still there. I opened up to him, but there were also things about me he didn’t know. And he had his own secrets. Over the countless hours we talked on the phone, I wondered what would happen if we actually saw each other. One night, I did something impulsive again. Only this time, I went to the airport and booked a ticket to California. We were about to find out if one phone call could bring two lost souls together or if my drunk dial really was all just a big mistake. A complete STANDALONE.

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    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 sixteen 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.   Connect with Penelope Ward Facebook Fan Group | Facebook | Website |Twitter | Instagram    

Title: Firefly
Author: Molly McAdams
Series: A Redemption Novel
Genre: Romantic Suspense

“I’m wrecked, ruined, destroyed, and in awe.” – #1 New York Times bestselling author, Rachel Van Dyken


The next captivating installment in New York Times bestselling author Molly McAdams’s Redemption series.
As the Princess of the Irish-American Mob, there’s no shortage of men ready to help guard and protect me. To slowly suffocate me to the point of seeking freedom—a place where I can breathe.
Kieran Hayes has been saving me for as long as I can remember. It’s in his blood, and one of the many reasons I fell in love with him. Until my favorite trait became his biggest flaw, making me resent the man I love. An unwavering warrior, his love for me has been shrouded by those instincts.
Save Lily. Protect Lily. Hide Lily. Cage Lily.
What I wasn’t prepared for was Dare—the man who would set my world on fire with just one touch. He saw straight through to my soul, as though he knew I was desperate for freedom, and silently demanded my heart from the beginning.
And I didn’t expect Dare to be Demitri Borello—the reason for so many deaths in my family. A man who will take my life the moment he finds out who I am.
Despite it all, I’ll love him until that moment comes.
A fire will die if there is no oxygen for it to consume. Ours is rapidly stealing every last breath we can sacrifice to it.

***The Redemption series is a series of romantic suspense standalones***

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A powerhouse romantic suspense that will have you questioning your morals and second guessing your view on love.
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Molly grew up in California but now lives in the oh-so-amazing state of Texas with her husband, daughter, and fur babies. When she’s not diving into the world of her characters, some of her hobbies include hiking, snowboarding, traveling, and long walks on the beach … which roughly translates to being a homebody with her hubby and dishing out movie quotes. She has a weakness for crude-humored movies and fried pickles, and loves curling up in a fluffy comforter during a thunderstorm … or under one in a bathtub if there are tornados. That way she can pretend they aren’t really happening.
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Title: Swink
Series: Landry Family #5
Author: Adriana Locke
Genre: A Standalone Bad Boy/Good Girl Romance
Release Date: July 21, 2017



Blurb

I’m that guy.

Camilla Landry rustles against me, the silky fabric of her overpriced lingerie slipping along my bruised rib. The porcelain perfection of her skin is even more innocent against the colorful ink dotting my own. It’s demure meets damage, pampered meets punctured.

So, yeah, it’s obvious I’m that guy. Dominic Hughes. Her attempt at rebellion. Her bid to see what the other side of the tracks feel like. I’m okay with being used because, from where I’m sitting, the other side of the tracks have never looked so good. 








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Excerpt

He’s standing in the doorway, one hand on the sweatpants that hang just below his chiseled hips and the other leans on the frame. The tattoos that mark his flesh are vivid against his bare skin, making the blues of his eyes shine.
He flashes a lopsided smile my way. “Took you long enough.”
“I don’t drive like a bat out of hell,” I laugh, stepping past him. “Did you shower already?”
“Yeah. I smelled like gym floors.”             
“As long as you don’t smell like gym whores,” I say, setting the bags on the table in the kitchen.
His laugh is contagious and I feel myself smiling. A set of arms cage me in from behind, grasping the table on both sides of me. My skin breaks out in a shiver as his lips find the sensitive spot behind my ear.
His face buries in the crook of my neck and he takes a long, leisurely breath. “You smell so good.”
“Keep doing that,” I say, relaxing my head onto his chest.
“What?”
“Talking with your mouth against me.”
“You like this?” he asks all breathily so that each word whispers across my skin.
My eyes fall closed as I relish in this moment of nothing but him. “No, I love this.”
“Can I tell you a little secret?”
“As long as you keep talking, you can tell me whatever you want.”
He chuckles, dotting kisses up and down my neck. “I love this too, feeling your body give up the fight of the day and let me take over.” He turns me in his arms so I’m facing him. “I love that you trust me enough to let your shoulders sink out of that perfect posture you walk around with.”
As he reaches up and undoes the elastic in my hair, I watch his features soften. He moves carefully, unwrapping the tie from the twisted mess in my locks, careful not to pull.
“There,” he says, cupping the back of my head through my long tresses, “that’s better.”
“You don’t like my hair up?”
“Not like you had it. You look to lunching-y,” he says, wrinkling his nose.
“Lunching-y?”
“Yes,” he grins.
“You are too cute.”
“You are too fucking sexy.”
Reaching up, I swipe the pad of my thumb over the cut above his eye. He flinches, but just for a second. “What happened?”
“Bond’s right hand.”
“I hate him.”
“So do I,” he snickers.
“Let’s get some ice for it.”
He leans in, his brows tugging together. “Let’s not.” His eyes hood as he takes me in, his tongue darting out and wetting his lips. My knees weaken, my body humming with delight at his reaction.
“I want to take care of you,” I whisper, although that’s really on the backburner now. “Let me baby you.”
Instead, he lifts me up and places me on the table. My stomach clenches as he positions himself between my thighs, my sundress curling at my waist. I ring my legs around him, pulling him so close that the soft cotton of his sweatpants rubs against my opening.
He looks down. “You aren’t wearing panties.”






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Author Bio

USA Today Bestselling author Adriana Locke lives and breathes books. After years of slightly obsessive relationships with the flawed bad boys created by other authors, Adriana has created her own.

She resides in the Midwest with her husband, sons, and two dogs. She spends a large amount of time playing with her kids, drinking coffee, and cooking. You can find her outside if the weather's nice and there's always a piece of candy in her pocket.



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