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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

RandomActsOfFantasy

Release date: 4/15/14 TODAY!!

Description:

From New York Times bestselling author Julia Kent comes the third in her Random series:

You ever really think that you’ll win the lottery? Meet Mr. Right? How about two Mr. Rights?

Somehow the universe is handing me everything I want (except for that lottery part…), and I

don’t like it. Not one little bit. Because just when you get all your dreams handed to you on a

silver platter, that’s when an airplane dumps its sewage on your house. Or your mama’s diabetes

takes a bad turn. Or your mobile phone gets stuck in your hoohaw.

(What? It happens…)

Boring old average me got everything I wanted already, moving from small-town Ohio to

big-city Boston to follow my heart. So when the fancy invitation offering me a pile of money

to come with the band, Random Acts of Crazy, to perform on an island resort and be their

manager arrived, I thought it was a cosmic joke. Enough money to help my mama get what she

needed, five days in sunny paradise, and a shot at greatness for the band? Unreal. One big shoe

was waiting to drop. On my head.

Just like no one really ever finds a naked man wearing only a guitar standing by the side of

the road hitchhiking and ends up falling in love with him and his friend and moving halfway

across the country for true love, no one gets an invitation to come to what turns out to be a

resort where people make what me and Joe and Trevor do together look like a chaste peck on

the cheek. But…

Well.

I guess these things do happen.

To me.

Pick up a copy:

Amazon  |  AmazonUK  |  iBooks

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

18142675-the-last-wicked-scoundrelWilliam Graves is the last of Feagan’s scoundrels. A one-time grave robber turned royal physician, he has devoted his life to saving others, because he knows there is no way to save himself. Especially not around a lady such as Winnie. Though underserving of her touch, he cannot resist, his passion cannot be tamed…even in the face of certain danger.

Winnie, the Duchess of Avendale, never knew peace until her brutal husband died. With William she’s discovered burning desire—and the healing power of love. But now confronted by the past she thought she’d left behind, Winnie must face her fears…or risk losing the one man who can fulfill all her dreams.

Why you need to read this book. I LOVE William. This book put a perfect end to a wonderful series that I loved! William survived a horrendous childhood to become a doctor with the help of his friends. He is one of the queen’s doctors and has fallen in love with a duchess. True love wins in the end. Bring some kleenex to the reading of this wonderful book!

The Last Wicked Scoundrel is available at Amazon

Excerpt:

At a ball…In a moonlight garden…When desire can no longer be denied…

“I don’t want you to be afraid, Winnie.” He cursed himself for the ease with which her name rolled off his tongue.

“I’m not when I’m with you.”

You should be, he thought. God help her, but she should be. Whatever reservoir of control he possessed dissipated.

With a harsh curse echoing between them, he lowered his mouth to hers. Her lips were as plump and soft as he’d always imagined, parting slightly, hesitantly, inviting him to take further liberties. And he was scoundrel enough to accept the invitation.

She moaned as he swept his tongue through her sweet mouth. She tasted of champagne, and he wondered if she were at ease with him because she’d had a few glasses too many. Then his wondering turned to wonder as her tongue explored his mouth with equal fervor. The advantage to being with a widow. She wasn’t innocent. God, he knew she was far from that. She clutched the lapels of his jacket. Closing his arms around her, he brought her in closer to him, until her body was pressed against his. He could feel her curves, her dips and swells. He cursed the clothes separating them.

Her nails scraped his scalp just before her fingers trailed along his jaw. Sighing, she wound her arms around his neck, bringing herself even nearer.

For three years now, he had dreamed of this moment, fantasized about it, envisioned it, but had never dared believe he would ever possess it. He didn’t want to give it up, didn’t want to stop. He delved deeper, unleashing the hunger he’d held in check—for her, only for her.

She deserved someone far better than he, someone who didn’t lie, who didn’t hold secrets, who could sit with her before a fire and never fear being honest. But with her, he would always have to watch his words, always take care in what he revealed. She had said she wasn’t afraid of him, but he knew that if she understood exactly what he was capable of doing she would be terrified. She wouldn’t trust him. He doubted that she would like him; she most certainly would not love him.

Even kissing her had the possibility of leading to disaster—and he wasn’t the only one whose life might be ruined. He should pull back now. And he would.

After one more moment.

One more moment of her sighs and moans. One more moment of her lush body writhing against his. One more moment of her arms entwined tightly around him as though she would never let go.

He wanted to undo fastenings. He wanted to lift her into his arms and carry her to her bedchamber. He wanted to do all the things he shouldn’t. But indulgences came with a price, and he couldn’t in all good conscience ask her to pay it.

 

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

storeitemJust get up and ride…

Much to his family’s displeasure, Michael Hartford pens popular Western paperbacks. But despite his cowboy image, he’s more Central Park West than Wild West. With a major photo shoot coming up, he’ll need to be a cowboy—not just look like one! And Michael has only a week at the Last Chance Ranch get the giddy-up in his game….

After a girl-fight scandal, socialite-turned-housekeeper Keri Fitzpatrick is cheerily unrepentant as she waits for the dust to settle. It’s not long before she discovers Michael’s secret and a whole lot of similarities…including an irresistible temptation to play Naughty Naked Cowboy!

But does this scrappy socialite have what it takes to ensure her would-be cowboy is both saddle sore and satisfied?

Why do you need to read this book? I found the characters of Michael and Keri delightful. I loved reading about Michael learning how to be a cowboy. Yet another example of why Vicki Lewis Thompson continues to sell books! Wonderfully written!

The Heart Won’t Lie is available on Amazon

*   *   *

Excerpt:

“What name do you want to go by while you’re at the ranch?”

Michael James Hartford, aka Western writer Jim Ford, thought about how to answer Jack Chance, who was currently driving him to the Last Chance Ranch. Michael had flown to Wyoming from New York City so he could learn some cowboy basics before a publicity team put him in front of a video camera in three weeks. Nobody besides Jack was supposed to know Michael was also Jim Ford, who wrote as if he could ride and rope but ..couldn’t.

He wondered if he should be known as Mike while he was here. A shortened name seemed better for a cowboy, but he already had his Jim Ford persona. If he adopted too many alternate names he wouldn’t remember which one he should answer to. “Michael’s fine,” he said. “Michael Hartford. That shouldn’t tip anybody off.”

“Michael Hartford it is, then. I don’t think you have anything to worry about, though. Some of the hands have read your books, but they’d never believe a greenhorn like you could possibly be the guy who writes those stories.”

“Yeah, I know.” Michael took the blow to his ego with good humor. His lack of cowboying skills really was an embarrassing joke.

“Besides, the picture in the back of your books shows you with a mustache. That really changes how a guy looks.”

“I grow that mustache before I have to make any appearances or get my picture taken. Then I shave it off. I’ll have to start growing it again next week. Between that and the Stetson, I’ve fooled just about everybody except my family, and they’re not about to broadcast the fact that I’m Jim Ford.”

“I don’t get that. You’d think they’d be proud of you.”

Michael laughed. “They would be if I wrote deep, philosophical literature. The Hartfords are old money, loaded to the gills with culture. They don’t want to claim a pulp fiction author. That’s actually worked to my advantage. If nobody knows who Jim Ford really is, then nobody knows that he’s never been on a horse in his life.”

“That still boggles my mind. You write as if you’re a real cowboy. I would have sworn you’d done all those things. What’s your secret?”

“Research.” Michael felt good knowing he’d managed to get it right, despite his lack of experience. “Plus I grew up reading Louis L’Amour.”

“Me, too. I didn’t think I’d find his equal, but you’ve hooked me real good. I wish my grandmother was still alive. She would have loved your books, too.”

“Thank you. That’s high praise.”

“I mean it sincerely.” Jack shook his head. “But I can’t figure you out. The way you write, I can tell you love the idea of being a cowboy. How come you never got the itch to spend time on a ranch?”

“You hit the nail on the head. I love the idea of being a cowboy, but I’ve avoided the reality, in case it doesn’t live up to my image of it.” Or I don’t. ”I’m selling a fantasy, and if I discover that fantasy doesn’t exist..”

“Damnation. You mean this visit could burst your bubble? I don’t want that on my conscience.”

“Hey, Jack, you’re not the one forcing me into this. The publicity department is to blame.” He blew out a breath. “No, that’s not right, either. I created this stupid situation all on my own. I chose to write about a world I don’t know firsthand, and then I accidentally became a big success at it.”

Jack nodded. “I noticed. Your name keeps getting bigger on the cover.”

“If my books weren’t selling so well the publisher would never pay for a video of me playing cowboy. My secret would be safe. But they made it clear I need to do this video if I expect continued support from the marketing team.”

Smiling, Jack glanced over at him. “Cheer up, little buckaroo. It won’t be so bad.”

“Easy for you to say. I’m going to make a damned fool of myself, and you know it.”

“Maybe so, but I’ll be the only one who’ll know it. Your lessons will be as private as I can make them.”

“Thank you for that.” Michael relaxed a little. “Bethany told me I could trust you.” He’d met motivational author Bethany Grace on the Opal Knightly TV talk show and they’d kept in touch. When he’d needed riding lessons on the QT he’d thought of her, because she’d grown up in Jackson Hole.

“Bethany’s good people,” Jack said. “Did you catch her wedding to Nash Bledsoe on Opal’s show?”

“Sure did. Nash is a friend of yours, right?”

“Yep.” Jack checked his mirrors before pulling around a slow-moving semi. “Nash owns a little spread next door to the Last Chance.”

“Bethany mentioned that. She inherited it, sold it to Nash and the rest reads like a romance novel.”

Jack chuckled. “It does, at that. Poor Nash, though, having to get hitched on national TV. There was some talk of me being the best man at that shindig, but it was way better for Nash’s dad to have that honor.”

Michael was beginning to get a bead on Jack’s personality so he made a calculated guess. “You didn’t want to do it, did you?”

“Hell, no. Not after I found out I had to wear makeup” Jack grimaced.

“It’s not so bad, little buckaroo.”

“Maybe not for a city slicker like yourself, but real cowboys don’t wear makeup.”

“What about your friend Nash? I guarantee he had on makeup during that wedding.”

“Only because otherwise he wouldn’t get to marry Bethany. Bethany was beholden to Opal for letting her out of her TV contract, and Opal was determined to stage that wedding on TV.”

“What a guy won’t do for love.” As he said it, Michael realized he had no personal experience to go by, and that was a damned shame.

“Ain’t it the truth. My wife, Josie, has got me wrapped around her little finger. Between her and my kid, Archie, I’m like a bull with a ring in its nose. They can lead me anywhere.”

Michael grinned. “I seriously doubt that.”

“No, really. They’ve got me hog-tied. How about you? Is there some citified lady calling the shots in your life?”

“Nope.”

“Too busy?”

“Kind of, but that’s not really the problem. The high-society women I meet don’t interest me, but I can’t date the ones I meet as Jim Ford because they think I’m a cowboy, which I’m not.” He didn’t like being caught between worlds, not belonging in either one, but he hadn’t figured out what to do about it. He envied a guy like Jack, who knew who he was and where he fit in.

Jack tapped his fingers against the steering wheel. “But you will be a cowboy.”

Michael felt a jolt of pleasure at the possibility. But he had to be realistic. “In a week? Not likely.”

“Are you doubting my ability?”

“No, I’m doubting mine.”

“Well, cut that out right now. First and foremost, a cowboy faces every challenge with an air of quiet confidence.”

“Of course he does, especially if he’s a hero in one of my books.” Michael looked over at Jack and expected they’d share a laugh over that. Instead, Jack seemed totally serious. “Wait, you’re not kidding, are you?”

“No, I’m not. Being a cowboy is a state of mind. You can start working on your attitude before you ever put your booted foot in a stirrup.”

“I see.” Michael was fascinated. For years he’d assumed that the larger-than-life cowboys in his books didn’t exist in reality. But Jack Chance was proving that assumption had been dead wrong.

After a year working as the housekeeper at the Last Chance’s main house, Keri Fitzpatrick, former Baltimore socialite, could wield a mean mop. She’d learned the basics from her boss, Sarah Chance, and the cook, Mary Lou Simms. Following their instructions, Keri could clean windows like nobody’s business and polish bathroom fixtures until they sparkled like fine silver.

But she’d challenge anybody, even a professional armed with power equipment, to eliminate some mysterious smell left by eight adolescent boys. They’d been part of the Last Chance’s summer program for disadvantaged youths, and they’d moved out early that morning. She’d been cleaning nonstop ever since except for a short lunch break with Mary Lou.

The second floor, where the boys had slept in two rooms fitted with bunk beds, was warm, and she dripped with sweat. Putting her hair in a ponytail to get it off her neck hadn’t helped cool her off much. She’d opted for jeans instead of shorts because she’d anticipated getting on her hands and knees for this job.

Sure enough, she’d had to clean some gunk off the baseboards. God knew what it was. She’d dealt with this last August right after being hired, but she was sure the previous year’s batch of kids hadn’t left a stink this bad. She’d noticed a slight odor yesterday, but had thought it would leave with the kids. Instead, it was worse.

Glancing at her watch, she gasped. The wealthy tenderfoot from New York City was due any minute. She’d been told very little about him, but Jack had said the guy was used to the best.

Keri had been raised in luxury, too. Although she didn’t live that way now, she knew exactly how to prepare guest quarters for a wealthy man. She’d spit-shined his room, which was at the other end of the hall, right across from her room. The crockery vase of wildflowers she’d placed on his dresser gave off a delicate aroma.

The poor things couldn’t begin to compete with the stench coming from the boys’ rooms. She’d already tested the situation, and the entire top floor, including the tenderfoot’s room, smelled like a garbage dump. Opening all the windows hadn’t made a dent in the foul odor.

Desperate to find the source, she went through everything again—closets, drawers, even under the bunk beds. Finally she found a kitchen matchbox crammed so far under one of the bunks that she’d missed it when she’d swept and mopped. Using a broom, she nudged it free and nearly gagged. She’d found her culprit.

She shouldn’t have looked, but after all this effort, she wanted to know what was in that box. As she slid open the matchbox, the smell got worse. She stared at a very fragrant, and very dead, mouse. It rested on a carefully folded tissue, and a second tissue covered the lower part of its body, so only the head was exposed.

Guessing what had happened wasn’t hard. She’d been around the boys enough to understand how their minds worked. They’d found the dead mouse, decided it deserved a decent burial and put it in the matchbox. Then they’d forgotten all about it.

Now what? She could throw it in the trash, but that seemed wrong. They’d folded the tissues so carefully, and she was touched by their concern for the little creature’s final resting place. Silly as it seemed, she wanted to bury it the way they’d intended.

Okay, so she would. Holding the box, she walked into the hall. She didn’t dare take the smelly thing down the back stairs and through Mary Lou’s pristine kitchen, so she made for the curved stairway leading to the front door. If she was very lucky she could get rid of the dead mouse before the tenderfoot arrived.

Luck was not on her side. The front door opened and Jack Chance ushered a broad-shouldered man through it. From this angle he didn’t look like a tenderfoot. His jeans were slightly worn and his blue chambray shirt was faded. His leather suitcase was scuffed up some, and even his hat seemed broken in. If she didn’t know better, she’d think this was a seasoned cowboy, and a nicely built one, at that.

Jack closed the door behind them. “I’ll take you straight upstairs so you can get settled in before dinner.”

As Keri froze in position, unsure whether to go up or down, Jack spotted her. “Ah, Keri! Perfect! You can show Michael to his room. Michael Hartford, this is Keri Fitzpatrick, our housekeeper. I’m sure she has your room all ready.”

Michael Hartford glanced up. “Nice to meet you, Keri.”

“Nice to meet you, too.” Whoa. Cute guy. Square jaw, strong nose and dreamy eyes that were an unusual blue-gray color. He looked vaguely familiar, too, although she was sure she didn’t know anybody named Michael Hartford.

She’d love to show him to his room, but not while she was holding an extremely dead mouse. “Um, Jack, before I show Mr. Hartford to his room, I need to—”

“What’s that godawful smell?” Jack wrinkled his nose.

“I found a dead mouse under one of the bunks.”

“It’s in that box?”

“Yes, and I—”

“Let me have it.” Jack started up the stairs. “I’ll throw it in the trash.”

Although it might not be wise to disagree with the man who signed her paycheck, Keri couldn’t let him take the mouse. “That’s okay. I’m going to bury it out back. I won’t be a minute. The guest room is all ready.” She started down the stairs.

“You’re going to do what?” Blocking her passage, Jack shoved his hat back with his thumb as he stared up at her.

She paused on the step above him. “Bury it.” Jack could be intimidating, but she’d also seen him melt whenever he was with Archie, his little son. Jack had marshmallow insides. “The boys fixed it up with tissues and everything, like it was in a little coffin.”

Jack’s mouth twitched and amusement flickered in his dark eyes. “Keri, those boys are gone. They’ll never know what happened to the mouse. Besides, they obviously forgot all about this burial they’d planned.”

“I realize that, but it was a sweet impulse, a sign they cared for this little creature. I think it proves that they made progress while they were here, and I’d like to carry out their wishes.”

“Or else it was meant as a joke.”

“I prefer to believe it was sincere.”

“All righty, then.” Jack moved aside to let her pass. “Bury it deep. Put a few stones on top. That thing stinks to high heaven and I don’t want the dogs digging it up.”

“I’ll dig a deep hole.” She gave their visitor a quick smile as she walked past him. “Welcome to the Last Chance Ranch, Mr. Hartford. Sorry about the dead mouse.”

He smiled back. “May it rest in peace.”

“That’s the idea.” She held his gaze for a little longer than was polite, but he had such beautiful eyes, especially when they were lit up with that warm smile of his. She hoped he wouldn’t always associate meeting her with the smell of dead animals.

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

15780001Shunned from London society for being the daughter of England’s most notorious spy, Alyce Hythe desires only to clear her father’s name. For years, she has been hidden away from all prying eyes, given a new identity and told to forget who she was. But strange things have been happening causing old rumors to once more be whispered. Long has Lord Julian Casvelyn lived with guilt brought on when his brother was murdered by England’s most infamous traitor. But one eventful night has changed everything Lord Julian believed about his brother’s death. Never did he suspect the woman he has just saved from certain harm is the daughter of that man. Now Julian is caught in midst of a conspiracy and desire for that woman. Thrown together by fate, the two search for answers long denied them and along the way discover a love that can free them both.

Seductive Secrets can be purchased from Amazon

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

dirty-distractionsShe wants a fling, and he wants forever…

Zoologist Sara Carmichael’s active social life is the envy of all her friends, but she has a secret. She’s bored senseless. If she has to go to one more bird sanctuary fundraiser with some guy who thinks his little sports car makes him “hip,” she’ll scream.

Enter Brad O’Halloran, her best friend Kim’s much younger brother. A guy who’s picking up the pieces after a quickie marriage and even quicker divorce. A guy so hot he makes her body scream with frustration.

Until Sara’s apartment is renovated, they’re all living at Kim’s place. Despite her determination to not to salivate at glimpses of Brad’s finer-than-fine body in nothing but a low-slung towel, flirtation escalates to the brink of something more.

Now one of them has to back down…or ante up for some good, dirty fun with the unspoken understanding that when the time comes, they’ll make a clean break. Neither anticipated they’d make the most complicated connection of all—love.

Warning: This book contains a hero who knows how to make engines— and women—purr, seduction while on cold meds, and a heroine who might be a little older but still enjoys learning a few naughty new tricks

Why do you need to read this book? Loved this book! It was spicy, it was believable, and most of all it was romantic! Must read!

Dirty Distractions is available: Amazon

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Excerpt

In the three months, fifteen days and handful of hours since she’d last had sex, Sara Carmichael had thought of little else. Maybe not every minute, but way more frequently than usual. And the co-star of those fantasies was the grinning, often grease-spattered man currently ogling her from a few feet away across her best friend’s backyard.

Sara reclined in the chaise lounge by Kim’s pool and brought her cell phone close to her face, as if she were mesmerized by the scores of last night’s game. Instead she peered over the top of her phone, tracking the way Brad O’Halloran’s gaze tracked her as she idly ran her toes along her left calf.

She always felt exposed around him, though her basic black swimsuit didn’t exactly promise carnal delights. It was a bikini, true, but at forty-two, she doubted the under-thirty set would be getting erections looking at her curves.

Brad was under thirty. He also seemed tall enough to block out the sun as he rose and strode over to her, though she suspected her own modest five-foot-three height made it seem as if he were taller. As often covered in grease as he was in aftershave, Brad didn’t skimp on all those man pheromones that set a woman’s nose twitching.

Or her nipples hardening, depending.

As far as things went, Brad was a pretty good catch. A business owner, intelligent, pleasant to talk to. He was beyond hot. Sizzling. Scorching. And yet still really young.

Dammit.

“You’re going to go cross-eyed if you keep staring at that phone, Sara Smile.”

Sara Smile again. The old eighties song had come on one day earlier that summer and Brad had immediately adopted the nickname for her, probably in the hopes of driving her nuts. It was working.

She’d never had a nickname before. Sara was a utilitarian name, a proper moniker for a competent, professional woman whose life was normal in every way. Normal, familiar and predictable.

Well, not that predictable. At least to outsiders she appeared to be having the time of her life. She loved her job. She dated, and most of the guys she met were nice enough. If she was a little restless sometimes, a bit unsatisfied, that was to be expected.

“You’re standing in my light,” she protested, nudging him away with her elbow without looking where she was aiming. Her jab went a little high, glancing off his thigh perilously close to the bulge in his faded jeans.

“Hey, hey. Watch it.”

“Sorry.”

She stared at her phone and hoped he’d leave. Didn’t a guy like him have women to chase on a hot Sunday afternoon? Since he was recently divorced—after a marriage that had lasted less time than a TV sweeps period—surely he needed to reassert his dominance on the dating scene.

While she’d gotten to know a lot about Brad as a person, she didn’t know a lot about his love life, other than the occasional rumor that hinted he was a stranger to celibacy. She and Kim had become fast friends when Sara moved to Fairdale, Pennsylvania three years ago to work at the Fairdale Bird Sanctuary. Kim worked in the sanctuary’s gift shop and had helped Sara get used to a new home far from her family and friends back in Idaho.

Due to the timing of their simultaneous singledom, Brad and Kim had made the decision to temporarily live together while they fixed up their mother’s old Victorian home to sell. Two months ago Sara had taken over the spare bedroom after she’d lost her own apartment to building renovations. Telly, her conure, couldn’t tolerate paint fumes, so she’d gratefully accepted Kim’s offer to stay with them for a while.

Some nights the three of them would pop in a movie and share some popcorn and laugh their asses off about nothing. Kim and Brad were awesome roomies, and Sara wasn’t in any hurry to leave. She’d even told her landlord he could finish the renos at his own pace because she was so happy with her new arrangement. Being with them had offered her a respite from her solitary life, and she had no intention of ending the party early.

But lately Brad had bumped up the amount of time he spent around her when Kim wasn’t around—especially the amount of time he spent staring at her. Seductively. Almost daring her to make a move.

She hadn’t responded to his advances. And she wouldn’t, because of Kim, among other reasons. What friend wanted their much-younger brother to be cougar bait? Just because they were living like freewheeling college students didn’t alter her status as a respectable professional.

Who happened to lust after a guy she should’ve seen as a brother.

It was probably the low-slung towels he paraded around in after his showers. That had to be it. His damn ripped stomach would turn a virgin into a nympho. And she was no virgin.

“Kiss for your thoughts.” Brad grinned and dropped down at the end of her chair, sitting very close to her legs. She hastily scooted over, but he only used the extra room to sprawl.

Sara rolled her eyes. “I don’t kiss little boys.” Shit. She hadn’t meant to say something so mean—especially not with that note of challenge in her tone.

Brad’s grin widened. “Little’s not a word that’s ever been used to describe me.”

She didn’t blush or fidget at his reply. Years of schmoozing at fundraisers and events with the public had taught her well. She had a pretty good game face and knew he wouldn’t be able to decipher her reaction. But her pulse quickened, and the sudden dryness in her throat contrasted sharply with the surge of moisture between her thighs.

“I wasn’t referring to height.”

His grin deepened. So charming. So utterly cocky. “Me either.”

Deciding she’d had enough of his attempts to flirt or whatever the hell he was doing, she lifted her brows. “I’m forty-two. I’ve seen a lot. A lot,” she emphasized, though it was only recently she’d seen much of anything. And most of what she’d seen she’d already forgotten.

That was partially because she’d given up having men over when she’d moved in with Kim. It seemed awkward, and she didn’t relish meeting Brad over coffee the next morning while her sheets still smelled like another guy’s aftershave. It felt…weird. So she’d accepted her love life would consist of sleepovers at the guy’s place until she grew out of her need to live with her friends as if she were twenty all over again. She wasn’t seeing any man in particular right now anyway. None of them interested her enough.

Did that make her fickle or impossible to please? She wasn’t sure. But she hadn’t given up looking for that guy who would make her pulse race faster.

Kind of like Brad’s doing now?

“And yet you’re single. So I’m thinking what you’ve seen hasn’t been worthy of making you stick around. Am I right?”

“I almost got married before I moved here,” she said, surprised again at what came out of her mouth. Somehow she’d developed a disconnect between her brain and her vocal cords.

“Yeah? What happened?”

“According to my ex, I ran away to play with endangered birds.”

He laughed, tipping his head so his longish, dark blond hair tumbled into his eyes. They seemed caught between gray and blue, as if even his irises were incapable of making up their minds. Just like Brad, if rumors could be believed.

“According to my ex, I left because I couldn’t be with just one woman.”

He braced a hand next to her knee on the chair, his knuckles millimeters away from brushing her skin. The backs of his hands were lightly dusted with hair, much like the bare chest he insisted on flaunting whenever she was within view. Unlike the very straight hair on his head, his chest hair was almost curly, the kind that would be perfect for a woman to tug on.

If a woman were inclined to do such things.

“Well, gotta admit, a three-week marriage does seem pretty bad.”

“It was almost six weeks actually,” he said, his voice lacking any inflection. But his easy grin faded.

“You still did better than me,” she said, making her own tone brighter in denial of the flatness of his. Funny, she’d used his quickie marriage and divorce to dismiss him, but the tense expression he wore while discussing his ex almost made her jealous.

Maybe he wasn’t such a player after all.

“I didn’t even make it to the altar,” she added, registering his silence.

“Neither did Darla and me. We went to the JP. Justice of the Peace,” he said at her curious expression.

“Oh. I thought you’d gone to Vegas.” She didn’t really think that, but she wanted him to smile again. He didn’t seem like Brad without the semi-permanent grin.

“You have lots of thoughts about me, apparently. Most of them wrong.”

“Maybe I’m a presumptuous bitch.” Again she scratched her calf with her toes. Except this time she knew exactly where his gaze would go, and the idea didn’t disturb her as much as it had a few minutes ago.

Sunstroke maybe? It was awfully hot out here. Or could they have actually forged some sort of bond over broken relationships?

Some sort of platonic bond. Because, seriously, she wasn’t going there. Not with Kim’s little…err, younger brother.

Normally she didn’t have a problem with making a decision and sticking to it. But lately ping-pong matches had nothing on the wishy-washy flip-flopping she was doing in her own damn mind.

“Or maybe you want me to think you are so I lose interest.”

“Are you admitting you have interest?” she tossed back, wondering where Kim had disappeared to. Her friend had run to the store around the block. What could possibly be taking so long?

He leaned forward and snagged her free hand, dragging it to…what? He wasn’t really going to put her hand on his—

Yep, he was. Oh my God. She had her hand on her best friend’s brother’s sizable erection, and her fingers were all but twitching with the urge to wrap around him.

No. Absolutely not. Heat radiated through thin cotton, an undeniable temptation. If anything, he grew even harder.

“Take a breath,” he advised, his lopsided grin again overtaking his face. “For such a woman of the world, a man’s hard cock shouldn’t be all that big of a deal.”

 

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feature-follow-185-time-to-join-the-ffWelcome to Feature and Follow Friday!

It’s been a long week here and I’m happy to have made it to Friday!

This week’s question is:

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

11867860THE BRIDGERTONS: HAPPILY EVER AFTER

ONCE UPON A TIME, A HISTORICAL ROMANCE AUTHOR CREATED A FAMILY…

But not just any family. Eight brothers and sisters, assorted in-laws, sons and daughters, nieces and nephews, (not to mention an overweight corgi), plus an irrepressible matriarch who’s a match for any of them… These are the Bridgertons: less a family than a force of nature. Through eight bestselling novels, readers laughed, cried, and fell in love. But they wanted more.

And so the readers asked the author…

What happened next? Does Simon ever read his father’s letters? Do Francesca and Michael become parents? Who would win in a Pall Mall grudge match?

Does “The End” really have to be the end?

Now, with The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After, Julia Quinn delivers eight sexy, funny, and heartwarming “2nd epilogues,” plus a bonus story about none other than the wise and witty Violet Bridgerton herself. So get to know the Bridgertons all over again—because Happily Ever After is a whole lot of fun.

Why do you need to read this book? This book is a must read for all fans of The Bridgertons. Loved it from beginning to end!

The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After is available on Amazon

Excerpt:

The Duke and I
The Second Epilogue

Midway through The Duke and I, Simon refuses to accept a bundle of letters written to him by his late estranged father. Daphne, anticipating that he might someday change his mind, takes the letters and hides them, but when she offers them to Simon at the end of the book, he decides not to open them. I hadn’t originally intended for him to do this; I’d always figured there would be something great and important in those letters. But when Daphne held them out, it became clear to me that Simon didn’t need to read his father’s words. It finally didn’t matter what the late duke had thought of him.

Readers wanted to know what was in the letters, but I must confess: I did not. What interested me was what it would take to make Simon want to read them…

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

17857469Jason Cavendish, the Earl of Coventry, is trying to discreetly locate his unwanted and abandoned bride among London society to request an annulment. However, he doesn’t remember what she looks like because he was blind drunk at his arranged wedding and hasn’t seen her since. The fascinating Lady Olivia has captured the Earl’s attention. Newly arrived from the country to stay with her school friend for the Season, she is appalled to discover that her husband, Lord Coventry, doesn’t even recognize her. She’s not about to tell the arrogant arse that she is his wife. Instead, she flirts with him by night and has her modiste send her mounting bills to him by day. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned… Too bad this woman finds her husband nearly irresistible.

Why do you need to read this book? This book was funny, totally delightful, and had me reaching for tissues. I simply loved these characters and the story line – wouldn’t want a thing changed!

The Elusive Wife is available on Amazon

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Welcome To Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

8893475Blurb: He’ll grant her every wanton wish . . . If she gives him her hand in marriage.

 

Why do you need to read this book? There is so much more to this book than the little that is said in the blurb. I’m a huge fan of Lorraine Heath’s work, but this book was one of the better ones, I thought. Let me know what you think.

Just Wicked Enough is available on Amazon

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Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!

11483403Joe Cantrell, owner of the Gansett Island Ferry Company, has been in love with Janey McCarthy for as long as he can remember. At the same time, Janey has been dating or engaged to doctor-in-training David Lawrence. When things go horribly wrong between David and Janey, she calls her “fifth brother” Joe, one of the few people in her close circle who lives on the mainland. Janey decides a few days with Joe is just what she needs before she goes home to the island to face her parents and family with the news of her broken engagement. It was bad enough for Joe loving Janey from afar, but having her in his house is pure torture. Will he take advantage of this opportunity to show her what they could have together? And what will Joe’s best friend and Janey’s protective older brother Mac have to say about it?

 

Why do you need to read this book? This book is a wonderful romantic tale of the man finally getting the girl. A delight to read!

 

Fool for Love is available on Amazon

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