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FUGLY Prize Pack
Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
Released Sept 15th, 2015
From New York Times Bestseller Mimi Jean Pamfiloff Comes a New Stand-Alone Story.
UGLY IS IN THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER...
My name is Lily Snow. I am twenty-five years old, and despite being born with an unattractive face, I have never doubted who I am: smart, driven, and beautiful on the inside.
Until I met Maxwell Cole.
He's handsome, excessively wealthy, and the owner of Cole Cosmetics. It's been my dream to work for this man for as long as I can remember. The good news is he wants to hire me. The bad news is he wants me for all the wrong reasons. Ugly reasons.
In exchange, he's offered me my dreams on a silver platter. The job. The title. A beautiful future. But this man is as messed up and ugly as they come on the inside. I'm not sure anyone can help him, and he just might take my heart down with him.
âSo I just ran without a shirt for a quarter mile and wouldâve gotten to go anyway?â
âNot really. But I wanted to make you feel bad. By the way, has anyone ever told you youâre completely mad?â
I laughed and turned around to unravel my tank top and slip it over my head, a huge smile on my face. âSo, what time do we leave for the airââ
I suddenly felt his hot sweaty body pressed up against my back, his one hand on my bare waist, the other sweeping my long hair to one side. âNo need to put that back on.â
My breath caught in my throat. âWha-wha-what are you doing?â I whispered, feeling his hands slide up the front of my body and begin touching my breasts over my bra. He was hard. Really, really hard, and straining against my lower back.
âI think thatâs fairly obvious; keeping our deal,â he said, his hot breath tickling my neck.
I was about to say something to explain how I didnât really want him to do what he was doing, but it wouldâve been a lie. The heat of his skin on my back, his hard cock pressing into me while his hands massaged my breasts felt better than anything Iâd ever experienced.
His lips trailed down the side of my neck and stopped right on the little spot where my shoulder started.
How was this happening? Because wasnât heâ¦didnât he have that problem withâ¦?
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New York Times and USA Today bestselling Romance author, host of the radio talk show, Man Candy, on Radioslot.com.
When San Francisco native Mimi Jean went on an adventure as an exchange student to Mexico City, she never imagined the journey would lead to writing Romance. But one MBA, one sexy husband, and two rowdy kids later, Mimi would trade in corporate life for vampires, deities, and snarky humor.
She continues to hope that her books will inspire a leather pants comeback (for men) and that she might make you laugh when you need it most.
She also enjoys interacting with her fans (especially if they're batshit crazy). You can always find her chatting away on Facebook, Twitter, or saying many naughty words on her show MAN CANDY on Radioslot.com !
Find out more about Mimi and upcoming books at www.mimijean.net
Enter to Win a
$50.00 eGift Card to Choice Book Seller
Complete Print Set of the Pennyroyal Green Series
THE LEGEND OF LYON REDMOND
Pennyroyal Green #11
Julie Anne Long
Releasing Sept 29th, 2015
Bound by centuries of bad blood, Englandâs two most powerful families maintain a veneer of civility...until the heir to the staggering Redmond fortune disappears, reviving rumors of an ancient curse: a Redmond and an Eversea are destined to fall disastrously in love once per generation.
An enduring legend
Rumor has it she broke Lyon Redmondâs heart. But while many a man has since wooed the dazzling Olivia Eversea, none has ever won herâwhich is why jaws drop when she suddenly accepts a viscountâs proposal. Now London waits with bated breath for the wedding of a decadeâ¦and wagers on the return of an heir.
An eternal love
It was instant and irresistible, forbidden...and unforgettable. And Lyonânow a driven, dangerous, infinitely devastating manâdecides itâs time for a reckoning. As the day of her wedding races toward them, Lyon and Olivia will decide whether their love is a curse destined to tear their families part...or the stuff of which legends are made.
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Julie Anne Long originally set out to be a rock star when she grew up, and she has the guitars and the questionable wardrobe stuffed in the back of her closet t prove it. When playing to indifferent crowds at midnight in dank clubs lost its, ahem, charm, she realized she could incorporate all of the best things about being in a bandânamely, drama, passion and men with unruly hairâinto novels, while at the same time indulging her love of history and research. So she made the move from guitar to keyboard (the computer variety) and embarked on a considerably more civilized, if not much more peaceful, career as a novelist.
Julie lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with a fat orange cat. (Little known fact: they issue you a cat the minute you become a romance novelist.)
Enter to Win a
Porter Brothers Mug & $5.00 Amazon eGift Card
KEEPING WHAT'S HIS
Porter Brothers Trilogy #1
Releasing September 29th, 2015
Young Ink Press
The Porter Brother's were raised to live and die by Three Rules
One, a Porter stands his ground
Two, a Porter leaves no enemy standing
Sutton Creech was a cheat and a liar. Tate Porter had found that out when he was eighteen, and he had no intention of letting her make a fool out of him again. He didnât care how much pain he saw in her eyes or how old memories tugged at his unforgiving heart until, the night a hidden secret is revealed and everything Tate had believed about their past is shattered, proving he had let the woman he loved get away.
Between trying to protect his family and running their pot growing business, Tate doesn't have time to play the "Nice Guy". He'd just have to remember the most important rule his father had given them: A Porter always keeps what's his.
"I was born in a small town in Kentucky. My family began poor, but worked their way to owning a restaurant. My mother was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and she instilled in all her children the value of hard work, and education.
Taking after my mother, I've always love to cook, and became pretty good if I do say so myself. I love to experiment and my unfortunate family has suffered through many. They now have learned to steer clear of those dishes. I absolutely love the holidays and my family puts up with my zany decorations.
For now, my days are spent writing, writing, and writing. I have two children who both graduated this year from college. My daughter does my book covers, and my son just tries not to blush when someone asks him about my books.
Currently I am writing five series of books- The Last Riders, The VIP Room, Predators MC, Biker Bitches, and The Dark Souls.
All my books are written for one purpose- the enjoyment others find in them, and the expectations of my fans that inspire me to give it my best.â
REBEL LOVE by JODI LINTON
Rebel Love is book 1 in the all new Dirty Sinners Motorcycle Club from Jodi Linton and Entangled Publishing. Available January 4, 2016
The Dirty Sinners Motorcycle Club is Em Connors’s only family, but she’s ready to risk everything—both her club and her life—for vengeance. Ten months ago, she was brutally attacked and her lover gunned down by a rival gang member. Now, she’s using her position as the Dirty Sinners president to track down the truth and exact her revenge.
He’ll risk it all...
With his partner murdered by a local motorcycle gang, Houston police officer Cade Jackson jumps at the chance to go back undercover and bring down the woman the department calls the Motorcycle Princess. But the sexy-as-hell leader awakens a hunger in Cade. Dark desires run deep—and he intends on teaching Em exactly how dirty he can be. But when his cover is blown, Cade must choose to uphold the law or protect the woman he’s grown to love...by going rogue.
Get More information at: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iTunes
"Sexy, suspenseful and thrilling. Jodi Linton's gritty, MC world of the Dirty Sinners leaves you breathless with excitement and is one you won't ever want to escape." Author Naima Simone
"Hot bikers. Thrilling suspense. Searing Passion. Gut-wrenching emotion...and oh my God. Hot bikers. Rebel Love by Jodi Linton is everything a romantic suspense is supposed to be." Author Naima Simone
About Jodi Linton
Jodi Linton is the author of the Deputy Laney Briggs Series and the upcoming The Original Sinners Motorcycle Club with Entangled Publishing. She lives in Texas with her husband and two kids. When she is not writing about sassy females and dirty talking heroes, she enjoys long walks and family time down at the river. Join the Pink Pistol Readers! Jodi Linton's official Street Team for insider scoops on all her upcoming books.
Connect with Jodi at: Website | Facebook | Twitter |GoodReads | Amazon
Tempting, inked and highly addictive. Alex is all that and more… I’ve made a lot of mistakes – ones I’m not proud of, and definitely ones that have left their marks both mentally and physically. Things got lonely; I got lost in my own fucked up mind and in the end it left me fucked out of my mind and unable to fight – or at least win. That life’s over for me and I’ve moved on. Six months into tattooing at Blue’s and already I’m the most wanted and sought out tattooist. My biggest clientele consists of women. They come into the shop, end up in my bed and we both come out happy. It’s been my release since I’ve stopped fighting. It’s become part of the “new” me. But when Tripp reappears in my life, I can’t deny the fact that I would do anything for that girl. So when she asks me to move in with her and her ‘boyfriend’ – our other childhood friend – I never expected for things to get so fucked up and twisted that I would find myself only more attracted to her by each passing second or wanting to protect her from everything that isn’t me. I have worked so hard over the years to suppress my feelings for her but when I find out that her and Lucas have been having an open relationship, I have the strong urge to rip his heart straight from his chest – to destroy the very thing that keeps him breathing. What I didn’t expect was for Lucas to ask what he did. For him to ask me to do the one thing I have secretly longed for since I was old enough to know what the need was. The second thing I never expected was the look of need that I saw in Tripp’s eyes when he asked. One night of free passion could change our lives forever. I never said that was a good thing either…
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1R8t2Xt
Amazon UK: http://tinyurl.com/ofwgzp7I’m in my room getting ready when I hear the shower turn on. The party starts in about fifteen minutes so Alex must be getting ready too. Just out of curiosity, I walk over to the bathroom door and turn the handle. It moves, but I don’t push it open. It’s unlocked. That thought excites me, making me realize that he didn’t care enough to lock it, and knowing that I could walk in at any time and see him naked elevates my core temp a little. I just find that to be so damn hot. That’s an open invitation… right? I release the handle and suck in a small breath when I hear him moan out, followed by what sounds like his hand slapping against the shower wall. Oh. My. God. That is the sexiest sound I have ever heard. That low, deep growl is all it takes to get me wet. Collecting myself, I back away from the door and take a deep breath. My legs feel shaky. “Don’t do this right now, Tripp. Dammit, don’t do this.” Shaking it off, I go back to stand in front of the mirror one last time, questioning the way I look in my newest little dress. Dresses are my thing. It doesn’t matter how many I own, I can never have enough. Plus, I love the way Alex looks at me every time he sees me in a new dress. His wandering eyes always cause my heart to flutter out of my chest. I just hope this little red dress is enough to get his attention. I’m in the middle of turning around to check out my ass, when I hear the bathroom door open, followed by a whistle. Please be naked…. What am I saying? Don’t be naked. Cautiously, I turn my head toward the bathroom door, with my eyes squinted, to see Alex standing there in a towel. He looks so damn sexy that I feel as if all the air has been sucked from my lungs. My chest aches as I stare him up and down, watching as the water drips from his beautiful, tattooed body. He checks me out with a smirk before whistling again. “Damn, Firecracker. That dress was made just for you.” He places his hand over the bulge in his towel and bites his bottom lip. “You look beautiful. Stop second-guessing yourself. I’ll see you downstairs in five.” He turns around, pulling the towel away right before he closes the door behind him. My mouth drops open from the glimpse of his ass that I am left with. It’s so firm and perfect that all I can think about is biting it… and the way it flexed when he walked. Is it normal for an ass to look that good? “I hate you sometimes,” I whisper. “Who do you hate sometimes?” I shake my head and look at my doorway to see Lucas standing there, dressed in a black shirt and a pair of gray shorts. He raises his eyebrows, waiting for my response. “No one.” I walk over to him and plaster on my best smile, trying to pretend that I’m not still thinking about those sounds I heard coming from the shower. “I was talking to myself. Just second-guessing my outfit, I guess.” Wrapping his arms around me, he kisses my shoulder and brushes my hair behind my ear. “Well, I would have loved to see you in a pair of short shorts and a tank top tonight, but this dress works too.” I roll my eyes before pulling away from him and bumping him out of the way with my hip. “I didn’t feel like wearing shorts, Lucas. This dress makes me feel good. If I feel good, then I have a good time and enjoy myself. That’s all I want tonight.” “Me too, baby,” he responds. “We’re going to have a lot of fun. Trust me.” I start walking into the hallway, but feel his hand slide up my dress, slipping a finger inside of me. I stop right outside of my room and swallow. Closing my eyes, I begin imagining it were Alex. “Holy shit, you are wet!” Wrapping his arm around my waist, he starts sliding his finger in and out, while moaning in my ear. “So damn wet. You’ve never been this wet before.” Opening my eyes, I look over to see Alex leaning against the wall next to his door, with his arms crossed over his chest. His eyes wander down to Lucas’ hand and then up to meet my eyes. Out of instinct I push Lucas away and pull my dress down to cover my ass back up. My heart is pounding like crazy. “Holy shit, Alex. I didn’t know you were out here.” Lucas doesn’t even seem to care that Alex just witnessed him fingering me. I bet he wouldn’t be too happy to find out that Alex is the real reason I was already wet and not because of him. He sucks his finger into his mouth and smiles at Alex. “Hey, man. People are arriving and there’s some hot chick downstairs looking for you. I told her you were almost ready.” I can see the aggravation on Alex’s face as he nods his head and walks past us. “Sure, man. Thanks.” My heart continues to race as I watch Alex quickly descend the stairs to be with a random chick that will get the one thing I have wanted for as long as I can remember, but unlike her, I can’t have. Clearing my throat, I tilt my head back as Lucas pushes me against the wall and kisses my neck. “Come on, Lucas,” I say stiffly. “People are waiting on us.” Not that I actually care. The truth is I don’t really want to fuck Lucas after seeing the look on Alex’s face. I have no idea what that look meant, but it was enough to make me want to forget it. He seemed bothered by our show. Lucas spreads my legs open with his thigh, before running a hand up my leg and cupping my mound. “Shit, I’m so horny right now. Is it wrong that the thought of Alex watching me fuck you is turning me on? I might even like to watch him fuck you. Damn, baby.” I feel a surge of heat shoot through me and can feel the wetness dripping through my bikini bottom now. The thought of Alex and fuck in the same sentence makes it hard to think straight. “Yeah,” I whisper. “And do you think Alex would like that?” For some reason, I want to hear what he thinks about Alex. He’s been around us enough to know more than anyone. “Are you kidding me?” He pushes me harder against the wall and kisses my neck again, lost in his lust to have me. “Alex probably fantasizes about fucking you every day… about sticking his dick into your tight little pussy.” I moan out as he slips his finger back inside and slowly starts pumping. “Damn… so wet and so tight.” He starts pumping faster and harder. “You want Alex to fuck you? Huh, baby? You want him to bust his load inside of you?” I find myself moaning louder as I picture Alex inside of me. “Maybe he can slide his hand up this dress later and finger fuck you just like I am. Do you think about doing that with your best friend? Huh? Do you imagine him pushing his fingers deep inside you? The same ones that he holds that tattoo gun with… You like that, huh? All the girls do.” He speeds up again, going as deep as he can and I lose it. My whole body shakes from my orgasm and I have to grip onto Lucas’ shirt to keep from falling. “Oh fuck!” I try to keep quiet, but the orgasm just seems to keep rolling through me, shaking me to my core. “Damn you, Lucas! You just don’t listen,” I say breathlessly. “Fuck. That was fast though, baby. You loved it.” I turn away and focus on catching my breath as the waves slowly begin to stop. He thinks that my orgasm was due to his abilities, but he couldn’t be more wrong. If I didn’t realize how much I wanted to have sex with Alex… well I do now. Lucas just helped confirm it. Victoria Ashley grew up in Rockford, IL and has had a passion for reading for as long as she can remember. After finding a reading app where it allowed readers to upload their own stories, she gave it a shot and writing became her passion. She lives for a good romance book with tattooed bad boys that are just highly misunderstood and is not afraid to be caught crying during a good read. When she’s not reading or writing about bad boys, you can find her watching her favorites shows such as Sons Of Anarchy, Dexter and True Blood. She is the author of Wake Up Call, This Regret, Slade, Hemy, Cade, Thrust, and Get Off on the Pain. Victoria is currently working on more releases for 2015.
THE PRE-ORDER PRICE IS 2.99 and will return to 4.99 October 14th.
RELEASE DATE: October 13, 2015
SERIES: TASK FORCE HAWAII, BOOK ONE
SERIES TAGLINE: EVEN PARADISE HAS A DARK SIDE.
Book Tagline: He’s got a killer to Catch and no time for Love. Fate has other plans.
GENRE: ROMANTIC SUSPENSE/MCIR
He’s got a killer to catch and no time for love.
Fate has other plans.
Former Army Special Forces Officer Martin “Del” Delano has enough on his hands chasing a serial killer and heading up TASK FORCE HAWAII. He definitely doesn’t need the distraction of Emma Mitchell. From the moment they meet, she knocks him off his feet, literally. Unfortunately, she’s the best person to have on the team to make the connections to help them catch their killer.
For Emma, it’s hard to ignore the lure of a man like him. Tats, muscles and his Harley cause her to have more than a few fantasies about Del. He’d never be interested in a geek like her, but she can’t resist toying with him. When she pushes the teasing too far, she ends up in his bed. She convinces herself she can handle it until the moment he steals her heart.
Del can’t help falling for the quirky genius. She’s smart, funny and there’s a sweet vulnerable side to her that only he can see. As Emma gets more involved with the investigation, she becomes the target of the psychopath. When the danger escalates, Del promises to do anything to save the woman who not only captured his heart but also his soul.
First chapter: http://bit.ly/srfirstchap
Order Links: http://bit.ly/srbuylinks
TASK FORCE HAWAII SOCIAL MEDIA
Pinterest TFH Page: www.pinterest.com/task-force-hawaii
Pinterest Seductive Reasoning Page: www.pinterest.com/seductive-reasoning
FAN GROUP: www.facebook.com/groups/harmlesslovers
Google +: www.plus.google.com/u/0/+MelissaSchroeder/
From an early age, Melissa loved to read. First, it was the books her mother read to her including her two favorites, Winnie the Pooh and the Beatrix Potter books. She cut her preteen teeth on Trixie Belden and read and reviewed To Kill a Mockingbird in middle school. It wasn’t until she was in college that she tried to write her first stories, which were full of angst and pain, and really not that fun to read or write. After trying several different genres, she found romance in a Linda Howard book.
Since the publication of her first book in 2004, Melissa has had close to sixty romances published. She writes in genres from historical suspense to modern day erotic romance to futuristics and paranormals. Included in those releases is the bestselling Harmless series. In 2011, Melissa branched out into self-publishing withA Little Harmless Submission and the popular military spinoff, Infatuation: A Little Harmless Military Romance. Along the way she has garnered an epic nomination, a multitude of reviewer’s recommended reads, over five Capa nods from TRS, thirteen nominations for AAD Bookies, and made the USA Today bestseller list in 2013 with The Santinis.
Since she spent her childhood as a military brat, Melissa swore never to marry military. But, as we all know, Fate has her way with mortals. After twenty years as an AF spouse, she and husband, a long with their brats, both human and canine, are now happy they get to pick where they live. She lives in the middle of wine and horse country in Virginia and shops for million dollar homes in Hawaii.
By Callie Hart
Book Two in the Dead Man's Ink series
When people get too close to me, they wind up dead. Blood. Bullet holes. Stab wounds. I’ve kept my identity secret to protect the ones I love, but now the most dangerous man in my world knows exactly who I am… And he’s coming for me.
Hector Ramirez has brought war to my doorstep, but he won’t win.
I’ll fight to defend the vulnerable.
I’ll kill to protect my club.
But I’ll die to save the woman I love.
Roane Publishing is giving away THREE
eARCs of Faerie's Ring!
Sedona Series, Book 1 By Jaylee Austin
Genre: Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal Romance Release Date: November 9, 2015
Publisher: Roane Publishing Keywords: Fantasy, Fae, Faeries, Paranormal, Romance, Demons, Vortex, Realms, Magic, Sidhe
Description: A fallen demon invades Lara Clint’s beloved city of Sedona and a strange voice calls for her to awaken to her destiny. A demon catcher, she is summoned to capture and reignite the flame of the iris, stolen by the son of Vobris, God of Light. Ironically, her own secret binds her to the demon.
Rafe Avery, a sidhe warrior and protector of dreams, is challenged to remove the black rose of darkness and help the one chosen to replace the white iris. Time has run out. The gates of Elysium and the magic portals will close to humankind, leaving them to the mercy and control of the revenge-seeking demon.
A hot attraction ignites between the human and fae as they struggle to accomplish their goals. Lara’s secret threatens to destroy all their lives. Is Rafe’s love strong enough to break evil bonds and bring the darkness to justice?
Roane Publishing is giving away THREE ARC copies to three lucky winners!
You don’t even have to be a blogger.
If you are willing to leave an honest review before September 25th, you are eligible to enter.
How? Simply fill out the form!
You have until Midnight of August 15th when three winners will be chosen by random drawing.
Happy Book Birthday to Call of the Sea!
Call of the Sea
By Rebecca Hart
Release Date: September 21, 2015
Publisher:Roane Publishing Keywords: Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance, Shapeshifter, Selkie, Pirates, Irish Lore, 17th Century Romance, Sea Stories
Elysandra Winters has always yearned for a life of adventure on the rolling seas and is willing to do whatever it takes to fulfill her dream. When her Privateer father continually refuses to allow his only daughter to sail, Ellie defies him, disguises herself as a boy, and goes in search of a captain who will give her a chance to prove her worth.
Thanks to the cursed selkie blood coursing through his veins, Daniel O’Rourke needs the sea to survive. After giving up on his humanity and spending three years in seal form, he decides to give his human side another chance. Daniel goes in search of a job and a sense of normalcy, earning himself a position aboard Captain Winter’s ship, The Siren’s Call. However, his new captain’s first assignment has nothing at all to do with sailing, and everything to do with his headstrong young daughter.
Years later, when the leader of a band of bloodthirsty pirates murders Captain Winters, Daniel and Elysandra’s lives come crashing back together with the force of a hurricane. Both experts in deception, they must find a way to trust each other in order to quell the raging storm between them, and have any hope of hunting down the captain’s killer.
GIVEAWAY!a Rafflecopter giveaway Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code. No purchase necessary, but you must be 18 or older to enter. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter, and announced on the widget. Winner well be notified by emailed and have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Roane Publishing's marketing department.
DREAMS OF HER OWN
Dreams Come True #3
Releasing November 2015
Soul Mate Publishing, LLC
Can even the unlikeliest of dreams come true?
He sees a spinsterish misfit.
If the Guinness Book of World Records had a category for the worldâs most boring life, Millie Stephens knows she would hold the record. After the plain, strait-laced personal assistant is saved by a total stranger from becoming New York Cityâs latest traffic fatality, she has a disheartening epiphany: her lifeâs highlight reel didnât exist. Determined to step out of the shadows and take a walk on the wild side, she starts Millie-style â by making a list.
She sees a stereotypical thug.
That total stranger, bad boy Ian Brand, is more than the sum of his parts. Beneath that sexy, tattooed exterior is a man with a painful past whoâs desperate to both hide and overcome his disability in the pursuit of his dreams. But his decision to bid on a large construction project could both lead to his downfall and reveal his secret.
Will Millie and Ian look beneath the surface and see thereâs more to each other than meets the eye?
If the Guinness Book of World Records had a category for the world's most boring life, Millie Stephens knew she would hold the record.
Bundled up in her brown wool coat against the chill of a New York fall, she hurried down the Brooklyn sidewalk to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription for her boss.
As personal assistant for best-selling romance author, Darcy Butler-Ryan, Millie kept her calendar, edited her manuscripts, handled her social media, and through her agent, Gloria Madison, scheduled her public appearances, among other duties. Since Darcy had become pregnant, Millie had also taken it upon herself to run errands and generally oversee Darcy's health and well-being.
Thus, the trip to the pharmacy for Darcyâs anti-nausea medication.
She consulted the day's to-do list to see what other errands were on it. Lists were her life. They provided organization, structure, and a sense of accomplishment. She loved ticking things off her list so much that if she accomplished something that wasn't on the list, she'd write it down just so she could have the pleasure of marking it off.
She had a list for everything. Errands. Tasks. Books to be read. Special dates to remember. If something needed doing, she had a list for it, all appropriately categorized, of course. Shoving her errand list into her coat pocket, she stopped at the corner and waited for the walk signal. As soon as the light changed, she stepped out into the pedestrian crosswalk, anxious to get to the pharmacy and out of the cold. She glanced to her left and froze, as a delivery truck barreled down the street as if the red light meant nothing. And as if she truly were invisible.
Fear stole her ability to move and she scrunched her eyes closed hoping death would at least be quick. She strived for invisibility, but now sheâd give anything to stand out.
Next thing she knew she was yanked from behind and hauled up against a hard object, bands of steel around her waist, her feet dangling in the air.
âAre you okay?â a gruff male voice asked, his breath warm in her ear.
She nodded, unsure if she could do any more than that.
âIâm going to set you back on your feet. Do you think you can stand?â
Nodding again, she realized the hard object at her back was a manâs chest, and the steel bands were his arms. She slid down his body and felt the sidewalk beneath her feet. A wave of dizziness washed over her.
âBreathe,â her rescuer encouraged. He turned her to face him, his hands on her shoulders, and she looked up and into eyes the color of a winter-gray sky, earnest with concern. His already tousled sandy blond hair ruffled in the wind whipping around the corner, and his chin bore the stubble so many women were fond of.
She inhaled deeply, drawing in the scent of something spicy and leathery. âBetter?â
She nodded, still speechless.
âYou should always wait after the signal changes before you cross a street. Iâve got an appointment. Youâre sure youâre okay?â
âBe more careful next time,â the stranger in the leather jacket said before he turned to walk away.
Millie managed to put one foot in front of the other for another block before coming to a bus stop and collapsing onto the bench. Her legs shook, her hands quivered, and she struggled to take in a deep breath. All she could think about was how your life was supposed to flash before your eyes when confronted with a near-death experience, and hers . . . didnât. Instead it was like a film projector that had run out of film â just a blank screen.
What did that mean?
It meant, Millicent Grace Stephens, that your life has been so boring that the highlight reel was nonexistent. Her thirtieth birthday was right around the corner, and what had she accomplished with her life?
Not much, that's what.
Sure, she had a bachelor's in literature, summa cum laude, with a focus on the Middle Ages from Sarah Lawrence College. She had a job she loved. And she could support herself. Other than that, she might as well have become a nun for all the excitement her life held.
She recalled the hard strength of her rescuerâs chest against her back. The rough and tumble look of him. Sheâd bet her first edition autographed copy of Edith Whartonâs Age of Innocence, that his life wasnât boring. That if he had a near-death experience heâd have a highlight reel worthy of an action movie.
Rising on still-wobbly legs, she drew in a long, slow breath, and resumed her errand in an I-almost-died daze.
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Rebecca Heflin is an award-winning author who has dreamed of writing romantic fiction since she was fifteen and her older sister snuck a copy of Kathleen Woodiwiss' Shanna to her and told her to read it. Rebecca writes women's fiction and contemporary romance. When not passionately pursuing her dream, Rebecca is busy with her day-job as a practicing attorney.
Rebecca is a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Florida Romance Writers, RWA Contemporary Romance, and Florida Writers Association. She and her mountain-climbing husband live at sea level in sunny Florida.