Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sexy & Sweet Release Day Goodness of Outside The Lines

Today is the release of a sexy and sweet contemporary that looks terrific (can't wait to pick up my own copy!). But this book is the third (albeit stand-alone) in a series, so if you haven't already gobbled up the first two books in Kimberly Kincaid's Line series, go do so immediately! 

As an ivy-league ER doctor who eats double shifts for breakfast (and lunch…and dinner), Blake Fisher has little appetite for anything other than work. Being on the staff at Brenstville Hospital means taking care of people, a need Blake understands all too well from losing his brother to cystic fibrosis eight years ago. When he’s asked to coordinate a carnival fundraiser for the cause, he jumps at the chance to help others with the disease…until it lands him side by side with the one woman he never thought he’d see again: his ex-fiancée.
Streetwise and rough around the edges, Jules Shaw is no stranger to earning a living through hard work. But when her job as the restaurant manager of Mac’s Diner puts her shoulder to really broad shoulder with Blake Fisher, she nearly balks. She’d rather dodge and deflect than admit the real reason she broke things off, but the catering contract for the carnival means big business for Mac’s, and feeding people is Jules’s lifeblood.
As Blake and Jules join reluctant forces, they quickly rediscover the spark between them. But the possibility of a future together hinges on coming clean about the past, with potentially devastating consequences. Can Blake and Jules overcome their drastically different backgrounds and learn to love again, or will they always be outside the lines?


Author Info

Kimberly Kincaid writes contemporary romance that splits the difference between sexy and sweet. When she's not sitting cross-legged in an ancient desk chair known as "The Pleather Bomber", she can be found practicing obscene amounts of yoga, whipping up anything from enchiladas to éclairs in her kitchen, or curled up with her nose in a book. Kimberly is a 2011 RWA Golden Heart® finalist who lives (and writes!) by the mantra that food is love. She has written two digital novellas, Love On The Line and Drawing The Line, about hot cops and sexy chefs, with a third novella, Outside The Lines, due this summer. She is also thrilled to have collaborated on a Christmas anthology with Donna Kauffman and Kate Angell, titled The Sugar Cookie Sweetheart Swap, to kick off her Pine Mountain foodie series with Kensington this October. Kimberly’s first full-length novel, Turn Up the Heat, will follow in February 2014. She resides in northern Virginia with her wildly patient husband and their three daughters.

Visit her any time at www.kimberlykincaid.com or come check her out on Facebook (www.facebook.com/kimberly.kincaid1) and Twitter (@kimberlykincaid).


Author Links


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Trivia & Wisdom from #RWA13

Conferences are both great and frustrating...because quite often three terrific panels occur at the same time. There's no way to soak in everything. So here's a list of things I learned at #RWA13, from trivial tidbits to seriously worthwhile wisdom:

Always ask for a room on a low floor. The elevator wait time disappears, and it won't kill you to walk a flight of stairs. Especially if you skip your planned gym time twice for a friend who really needs to talk.
Dress for the job you want, not the job you have. Despite the misleading fun of long sessions at the bar every night, this is a business conference. Every interaction, no matter how small in a bathroom or elevator or luckily ending up next to them at lunch, is a potential job interview. You are selling yourself and your professionalism along with your book.

If your publisher is awesome and puts your book cover on an elevator wrap (even if your room is on the 1st floor!) you will find an excuse to walk past said elevator multiple times a day.

Does your chapter want to release an anthology as a fundraiser? If you license the rights through a publisher, your royalties are passive income and not taxed. If you self-pub it, you must pay taxes.

The annual Harlequin party at RWA is the stuff of legend. I've heard of people who wanted to contract with them just to get INTO the party. Well, all I'll say is that the hype - 100% correct. They had chefs hand-frosting cupcakes with a toppings bar. Amazing.

If your publisher asks you to participate in a spotlight, find out what time it is before agreeing. I kid. In actually, being a featured author in the Carina spotlight was one of the best things I did all week. At least half a dozen people stopped me throughout the conference to say how helpful my comments were. And that is what this conference is about: sharing your knowledge, and paying it forward.

Liliana Hart is amazing. Her success, and work ethic, are remarkable. If you are at all interested in ever self-publishing (or being a hybrid author, which was the newest, hottest trend this year), go see her speak. Or Bella Andre. Both will blow you away.

You will go home with many, many books. I was much more selective this year, and only came home with 38. Have stuffed all but four onto my bookshelves. Good thing we're moving so I have an excuse to buy another one!

Good newsletter tidbit - try to keep them under 600 words. Short and snappy, with only five sentence paragraphs, holds attention better.

There is apparently a huge problem with rabies in raccoons all along the Appalachians (learned that at the fascinating workshop by the CDC's Elite Disease Detective Corps).

Don't miss a single opportunity to brand yourself and your books (as illustrated by the awesome author of 1920s erotica, Stephanie Draven). Knowing your brand and sticking to it can make a huge difference.

Be sure to accept any and every offer from your publisher that could equal exposure. You can nap when you get home. Complain about the bags under your eyes (like I did, when I found out the interview I agreed to oh-so-happily would be videotaped), but suck it up and do it, because opportunities don't always repeat. Do everything. Talk to everyone.

Although the food may be questionable (I was served an identically sauced chicken breast three days in a row), go to the keynote luncheons. Go to the RITA awards. You will hear profoundly moving speeches that will motivate you for months to come. Kristan Higgins made me laugh uproariously, weep three separate times, and made me feel so unbelievably proud to share my gifts as a romance writer with the world.

Take lots of pictures. Because you and your chaptermates (waves wildly at MRW peeps) will never look so fabulous as at RWA.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Destination Wedding - the Sexy Romance that's the Kindle BIG Deal until August 1!

Destination Wedding – On Sale Now on Amazon for $0.99!!
Wedding planner Kate Ashby’s fear of flying is eased by a sexy stranger and one slow lip lock that rockets her into another obit.

CEO Luke Cannon has just traded seats with his identical twin. Little did he know that an innocent kiss while pretending he was his brother would soon create havoc.

What happens in the air doesn’t stay up there. Once on tropical land, Kate believes that the handsome stranger who gave her the best kiss of her life is now her new client, Drew Cannon, fiancé to the beautiful and wealthy Lauren Kincaid. While Kate struggles with the intense feelings she thinks she has for Drew, Luke discovers Kate’s been hired to plan his brother’s destination wedding. He also realizes the initial sparks they shared 30,000 feet up are now mistakenly aimed at Drew.

Can Luke get Kate to realize that the feelings she has are for him? He’s got forty-eight hours in paradise to try.

Available on Amazon as part of the Summer Big Deal for only 99 cents!

Enjoy an excerpt from Robyn Neeley's Destination Wedding {Chapter One}:
     "I do. I do." Wedding planner Kate Ashby quietly repeated her calming mantra. Paralyzed in her window seat, she stared at the illuminated fasten seatbelt sign while her hands gripped the metal buckle strap.
     Please turn off. Please turn off. They had to be close to cruising altitude. Soon, she'd be able to request a strong drink to knock her out for the duration of this bumpy flight.
     She sat still, trying to ignore the terror pulsating through her. Why hadn't she bought sleeping pills before boarding a twelve-hour flight from New York City to Hawaii? Now, that would have been the smart thing to do.
     Glancing out the tiny passenger window, she clutched her gold "K" necklace. It was completely irrational to be terrified and she realized the odds of her and her fellow passengers landing safely in Honolulu were more than in her favor. Still, this was her first time flying such a long duration. Departing Manhattan this evening in turbulent thunderstorms had shot her nerves. She was grateful that her boss had sprung for a first class ticket for the long flight.
     A loud rattle caused her to grab hold to her armrests. "What was that?" She turned to the stranger sitting next to her. He had short blondish brown hair and was wearing a blue blazer. His face had a nice tan. She had failed to realize that her row mate was incredibly handsome. Usually the person sitting next to her was a grandparent or couldn't speak English. Perhaps he could help her ease her nerves?
     "Um ... I think it's the drink cart. Would you like something?" He folded his Wall Street Journal.
     Sexy and smart.
     "I'll take a tequila and tonic," he said to the flight attendant.
     And likes his drinks strong. This could be fun.

Purchase at Amazon
Twitter: @robynneeley

About Robyn: Robyn Neeley is an East Coaster who loves to explore new places; watches way more reality TV than she cares to admit; can’t live without Dunkin Donuts coffee and has never met a cookie she didn’t like. If you have a must read romance suggestion or a fabulous cookie recipe, she wants to know. Visit her at robynneeley.com.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Making The First Move Blog Tour & Giveaway!

Making the First Move Tour Banner

Making the First Move by Reese Ryan Making the First Move is available at these fine booksellers:
Amazon | B & N | B-A-M | iTunes | Amazon United Kingdom | Audible[/caption] Melanie Gordon has spent the past five years obsessing over her career to dull the pain of a devastating breakup and the loss of her father. Her effort pays off when she receives the promotion that could be her big break. Only it means returning to her hometown to face her past while leaving behind the man who could be her future. Selfless (and insanely sexy) philanthropist, Raine Mason, is committed to his cause. But his passion for rescuing high-risk young males from the road to disaster is fueled by his own dark and tragic past. When Raine is ready to take his casual friendship with Melanie to sizzling new heights, her one-way ticket to Cleveland is already booked. But a steamy night of passion leaves them both wanting more, even if Melanie is afraid to admit it. She reluctantly agrees to a long-distance relationship with no promises and no commitments. Melanie may finally be ready to give Raine her heart…but then she discovers startling news that causes her to question everything she knows about him. Worse, he’s harboring a dark secret from his past that threatens to shatter any hope of a future for them unless he can convince her that their love is worth the risk.

Add Making the First Move to Goodreads

Excerpt Thirty minutes later, Raine is standing in my doorway in a camel-colored cashmere sweater and a pair of Levi’s. A white, button-down shirt peeks underneath the collar. Chin-length, caramel-colored locs are pulled back at the crown of his head, with the remaining hair hanging free. He is, in a word, gorgeous. My eyes trace the curve of his biceps. I lick my lips, cheeks flushed, and hope he hasn’t noticed I’ve spent the past five seconds checking him out from head to toe. Twice. “I see you’re ready to go.” He nods toward the wrap draped over my arm and my clutch tucked underneath it. “I am.” “Then shall we?” Raine extends his hand in the direction of the narrow stairwell leading down to the first floor. “Let’s.” I offer a nervous smile. He slips his hand to the small of my back. I try not to notice the heat emanating from his hand. But it’s nearly impossible to ignore the jolt of electricity, which travels through his long, elegant fingers and enters the base of my spine. I’m sure his hand has been on that exact spot when he’s guided me through a crowd or we’ve danced together at charity functions. His touch seemed incidental then. Tonight, there’s something about the placement and pressure of his hand that feels deliberate, significant. Or maybe I’m transferring my own well-guarded desire to an innocent gesture. Raine guides me down the stairs, out the front door and into his car, his hand still on my back. “Thanks for doing this,” I say. “I know it’s short notice.” “I couldn’t leave you standing there dressed, with no place to go.” He tries to hide a smirk as he turns the ignition. “How’d you know I was already dressed when I called?” “You’ve never been ready when I came to pick you up. There’s not a chance in hell you threw this together in thirty minutes. You look…amazing.” “Very clever,” I say. “And thank you, I think.” “It’s too bad, actually.” “What’s too bad?” “That you were ready. I was hoping to catch you in a towel, just out of the shower,” he says, his eyes straight ahead. My cheeks grow warm. I’m not offended, just surprised. Our social conversations have been mildly flirtatious, but never anything so easily decipherable. We prefer our flirtation so well-coded that only a world-class hacker has a chance in hell of sorting it all out. I stifle a giggle. “Sorry to disappoint you.” He smiles. We ride in silence for a while. He pays strict attention to the road. I pretend to be fascinated by the houses and apartments that fly by my window. The same ones I've seen nearly every day for the past five years.
Buy Making the First Move on Amazon
Buy Making the First Move at Barnes & Noble
Buy Making the First Move on iTunes


MAKING THE FIRST MOVE author, Reese RyanReese Ryan writes sexy, contemporary fiction filled with colorful characters and sinfully-sweet romance. She secretly enjoys torturing her heroines with family and career drama, reformed bad boys, revealed secrets, and the occasional identity crisis, but always rewards them with a happily ever after. Born and raised in the Midwest, she now resides in Central North Carolina with her husband and young adult son who tolerate her propensity to sing and dance badly. A self-proclaimed Bohemian Southern Belle, she treads the line carefully between being a Northerner and a damned Yankee--despite her insistence on calling soda pop. Reese gauges her progress by the number of “bless your lil’ hearts” she gets each week. She is currently down to two. Visit Reese online at ReeseRyan.com. Follow her on Twitter @ReeseRyanWrites. Connect with her on Facebook.   Making the First Move Blog Tour Grand Prize

Making the First Move Grand Prize

  • $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble Gift Card
  • Digital copy of Making the First Move by Reese Ryan
  • Digital copy of The Winning Season by Alison Packard
  • Digital copy of Knowing the Score by Kat Latham
  • Digital copy of Personal Assets by Kelsey Browning
  • Digital copy of Derby Girl by Tamara Morgan
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Monday, July 8, 2013

The Ultimate Beach Book - New Release!

Everyone loves a fast and fun summer read, right? Well, this is release day for what I promise is the ultimate summer read - a sassy and sexy, flirty and funny caper that takes place at the beach. No, it doesn't just take place there - it transports you to the water's edge.
Darcy Trent is lucky Cooper Hudson is on hand to sweep her off her feet—literally—when she nearly drowns while swimming in the ocean. But life-saving aside, Mr. Perfect's timing stinks: Darcy's career is about to take her to the complete opposite side of the Atlantic. Still, a little summer loving with the tall, blond and sexy former cop is far too tempting to pass up.
When his plans to enter the Secret Service went south thanks to a bum knee, Coop retreated to the family beach house to mull his future. Romance is the last thing on his mind, until he fishes a curvy brunette out of the sea. Now, spending time in Darcy's arms seems like the ideal distraction, even if it is just for a week.
But with Darcy's departure date fast approaching and their careers on the line, can they realize in time that their beach fling might become the real thing?
Here's an excerpt to get you hooked: 

“Thanks for the rescue. If you hadn’t grabbed me, I’d still be doing somersaults underwater. In my book, that qualifies you for hero status.”

An unreadable emotion flickered across his eyes so fast she almost missed it. In a low mutter, he said, “Don’t call me a hero.” He hit the hard-packed sand at the edge of the water and stopped walking.

Modest, heroic and gorgeous. And it didn’t take even a fraction of her eight years of training in cultural anthropology to figure out he was attracted to her. They’d long since hit land, and yet he made no move to put her down. Not that she was complaining. She’d happily continue to sit cradled in his arms. It gave her an up-close view of his chiseled cheekbones, sharp enough to etch glass. Her fingers brushed through the salt-spiked tips of his blond hair. No doubt about it: she’d found the man candy Trina had promised. One bite of him would be as sinful and addictive as a chocolate honey truffle.

“Well, I can’t call you Mr. In-The-Right-Place-At-The-Right-Time.” When his lips curled up showing off his dimple, Darcy’s interest kicked up a notch.

“Good point. I’m Cooper Hudson. Coop, to my friends.”

“Darcy Trent.”

“It’s been a long time since I met an ocean virgin.”

“Oh, but only in the aquatic sense, I assure you.” What? Why wave her long-vanished virginity under his nose? Now he probably thought she had the morals of an alley cat. But hearing the hottest man she’d ever seen use the word virgin threw her for a loop. Not the standard nice-to-meet-you conversation, by a long shot.

He flashed an easy smile. “Don’t worry. I hadn’t planned on delivering you as a virgin sacrifice to appease the volcano gods over at the mini-golf course.”

Okay, now Darcy could add funny to the list of his overwhelming awesomeness. Maybe she really had blacked out and was hallucinating her ideal man while unconscious, underwater. What else could explain such perfection?

“Darcy, what happened?” Trina’s yell preceded her appearance in front of them. After a quick yank upward to her scrap of a top, she rested her hand on Darcy’s leg. “Why’s he carrying you? Did you get stung in the foot by a jellyfish? ’Cause if you did, I’ll pee on it. That’ll take the sting away.”

That certainly settled the whole am-I-hallucinating question. Never, ever would Darcy fantasize about her best friend peeing on her. The situation had to be real. And if Trina in all her adorable annoyingness was real, then her hot hero hunk had to be real, too.

To her dismay, Cooper lowered her to the ground.

“Your friend’s fine,” Cooper announced. “A wave almost rolled her, so she’s a little shaken up, but uninjured.”

“You keep your distance,” Darcy warned with a hand raised to keep Trina at arm’s length. “Don’t even think about peeing on me. Not even if I get attacked by an entire school of jellyfish.”

Trina wrinkled her nose. “Okay, but if the situation arises, just remember that I would be willing to make that sacrifice.”

“Friendship is a beautiful thing.” Cooper’s sardonic tone belied the sincerity of his expression.


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

If You Love Nora Roberts, You've Got To Read NORA ROBERTS LAND

If you're a romance fan, then you've read at least one Nora Roberts. If you're like me, you suck them down faster than potato chips. Either way, I'm thrilled to share a new contemporary release from my very talented friend Ava Miles.

Journalist Meredith Hale's ex-husband claimed her Nora Roberts addiction gave her unrealistic expectations about marriage, and she believed him. All dreams of happily ever after¾or Nora Roberts Land as her mother calls it— went up in smoke. But when her family asks her to temporarily help their Dare Valley, Colorado newspaper, she decides it’s time to change her life and prove her ex wrong. She's determined to find her own small-town Nora Roberts hero, prove that true love exists, and publish a story about her quest.
War correspondent Tanner McBride has just returned stateside to work for a major newspaper, and the last thing he expects is blackmail. Yet, before he can even unpack, he’s headed to Colorado. His assignment? Make his boss’s ex-wife fall for him and then break her heart. Her article about discovering love à la Nora might air dirty laundry about her marriage to the media mogul, threatening his senate run. The mogul wants Meredith stopped, and he makes sure Tanner has no choice in the matter.
When the two meet, the sparks between them are undeniable. Meredith, who vowed never to date another journalist, begins to succumb. Could Tanner be her Nora Roberts hero? As they work together to uncover the truth behind a suspicious death, the depth of their feelings unfolds and both realize they've kept their secrets for far too long. But before the truth can be revealed, their investigation takes a deadly turn, one that might make Meredith's personal Nora Roberts Land go up in flames.

Here's a sneak peek:

Meredith Hale scanned the bookstore window. There it was—the new Nora Roberts book—the cover a bold, powerful landscape of sky and water.
Her superhero alter ego, Divorcée Woman, couldn’t override the rash of goosebumps on her arms or her knotted stomach. Meredith patted the red lace La Perla bustier hidden under her black suit jacket and took one hesitant step closer to the glass, her breath hitching as she scanned Nora’s prominent display. She imagined Divorcée Woman telling her to suck it up. It was only a bookstore after all. It wasn’t like she had to take a bullet for the president or anything.
She’d gone cold turkey on Nora’s books a year ago, when her ex-husband, Rick-the-Dick, threw Black Hills at the wall, snarling that her favorite author had given her an unrealistic view of love. “Out marital problems are her fault,” he said. “She’s made you believe in happily ever after—something any adult knows is a myth. Grow up.” Then he packed his custom-tailored suits and slammed out the door of their swanky Manhattan apartment.
At first she’d thought maybe he was right. But she missed Nora’s books. And not reading them hadn't made the whole divorce thing any easier on her. It hadn't made the panic attacks go away.
She wanted her Nora Roberts back, dammit. It was time to reclaim her life.
Unfortunately, just looking at the cover had her hovering on the edge of a panic attack. Her hands grew clammy. She wiped them on her black suit and dug into her matching purse for her cell phone. Her sister would be able to talk her into going into the store. After all, Jill could talk anyone into anything.
“Hey, Mere,” Jill greeted, the ever-present sound of her favorite band, Abba, in the background. Jill wanted to live life like a dancing queen.
“Hey,” she said, making sure to sound calmer than she was. “How’s business at the coffee shop?”
“Well, after a regional dairy salesman tried to talk me into changing my store’s name from Don’t Soy With Me to Don’t Milk Me, I’m about ready to bash my head against the espresso machine. He was so dense. I tried to explain it’s a play on words, but he just blinked like one of those dairy cows and went, ‘Oh.’”
Meredith’s panic slowly eased. Jill and her stories were always a comfort. “Being in New York, I don’t run into too many milk salesmen. Does he wear a special outfit?”
“No, thank God. Speaking of milk, did you get my present?”
Ducking closer to the store window so she wouldn’t be mowed down by a rush of pedestrians, Meredith said, “You mean the coffee mug with the line, ‘You’re My Udder One’?”
“Yes. I tried to appease the milk guy by telling him I’d put those mugs out for display, but he wouldn’t leave. He even offered to teach me how to milk a cow. I think he was hitting on me.”
As Meredith muffled her laughter, a passing banker gave her a disapproving stare. His shoes, belt, and briefcase matched—the Wall Street uniform. “And I thought my love life was pathetic.”
“What love life?”
“Funny. Speaking of which, I’m outside a bookstore. I woke up this morning and decided I want to read.”
“Oh, honey, I didn’t know you were illiterate.”
“Hah.” She eyed the rush of people heading in and out of the bookstore on 82nd and Broadway.
“Okay, take a deep yoga breath. Jeez, Mere, you sound like Great Aunt Helen when she put down her oxygen to steal a swig of Grandpa’s scotch at Christmas.”
“Right. Breathe.” Was her vision blurring? “I’m taking a step.”
“Oh, baby, I wish mom and I were there to see it.”
Her sister’s wicked humor cut through the fogginess in her head. Meredith wasn’t sure she was in her body anymore, but it moved when she walked. Her hand managed to open the door. She walked in on legs wobbling like an untangled yoyo.
“Are you inside yet?”
She squeezed into a book aisle as people cruised by. “Yes.”
“Welcome back to the land of the reading.”
Was there anything more comforting? “Thank you. I’m standing by the thriller and suspense section. Makes me think of Grandpa. He’s convinced there’s some sort of conspiracy going on at the university. I’m researching the college drug trade for him on the side. Maybe I should buy him a John Grisham book instead.”
“I know! He keeps pumping me for information about the parties I’ve gone to. I told him people drink too much and puke. End of story.”
“Tell that to his infernal journalism gut.” Not that she could point fingers. Hale DNA had given her one too.
“I know the fam’s grateful you’ve been helping out with the paper after Dad’s heart attack,” her sister said, “But Dad’s still working too hard. He loves that paper like it’s a child—just like Grandpa.”
“I know, Jill.” Suddenly guilt pressed down on her, its force almost as strong as the panic. She was helping, but she wished she could do more. Sometimes being long-distance sucked.  
Her sister cleared her throat. “I don’t know how to say this, but you need to know. Sorry the timing’s not great with the whole one-year-divorce anniversary thing, but…” Her sister’s breathing went a little ragged on the line. “The doctor’s concerned about dad’s progress and wants him to take some time off. Mom hasn’t wanted to ask you, but someone needs to help Grandpa. I know he can run circles around us all, but he’s in his seventies. Is there any way you can come home to help out for a few months? I’d do it, but I have zero journalistic instincts. Plus, I have Don’t Soy with Me to run.”
“Come home?” She bumped into a book display, and a whole parade of James Patterson hardcovers slid to the floor. Her lungs seemed to stop at the thought. “I can’t breathe...and I really want to.” She gulped in air.
“Go to the coffee shop and sit down. Put your head between your knees.”
She wobbled over to a chair and caught sight of the romance section. The tightness between her ribs could have competed with a boa constrictor as it killed its victim. She didn’t care what people thought. She put her head between her legs when she saw red.
Her phone buzzed in her clenched hand, signaling another call. She ignored it, breathing deeply. When her equilibrium returned, she took deep breaths until she was sure she’d inhaled all the circulated air in Manhattan. She put the phone to her ear again.
“You still there?”
“Yep. You okay?”
Question of the year. “I didn’t pass out, but it was close.”
“Meredith, your husband cheated on you, and then blamed it on you—and Nora’s books. You’ve been through an emotional wringer. Give yourself a break. I keep telling Jemma that too.”
Jill’s best friend had just been dumped by her childhood sweetheart. “You’re pretty good at giving advice.”
“Practice. Jemma’s devastated.”
“Yeah, I get that.” Her eyes burned, and she pinched the bridge of her nose. “I can’t stand another night in my apartment. I miss my Tribeca place and eating out in restaurants and visiting gallery openings. I don’t miss Rick-the-Dick, but I do miss being part of that jam-packed world.”
“You have the Power Couple Blues, Mere. Maybe coming home to help the paper will give you a new perspective. You don’t have any family there. Most of your friends changed when you got divorced.”
True, she had become intimately familiar with the term “fair weather friend” over the past year. “I miss you guys.” But going home? She’d been in New York since starting at Colombia. “Let me grab a coffee.”
“I wish I was there to make your favorite. Then I’d give you a ginormous hug and tell you about Paige Lorton snorting whipped cream up her nose and old man Perkins giving her the Heimlich.”
Her laughter popped out like the final popcorn kernels in the microwave. “Oh, Jillie, I love you.”
“I love you too. You’re my big sis. I miss you, Mere.”
Holding the phone away from her face for a moment, she walked up to the counter and gave her coffee order—a tall, no foam latte—before shuffling back to her chair. She slumped against the metal back, returning the phone to her ear. “Let me think about coming home.”
“Surely Karen knows how hard you’ve worked after joining her paper. You’ve been there for a year now. Plus, it’s Rick-the-Dick’s rival paper. That’s gotta be extra bonus points.”
Her coffee magically appeared in front of her. She looked up to see a petite barista with flat-ironed hair. “You look like you needed me to bring it over.”
Kindness didn’t happen often in New York. In her hometown of Dare Valley, Colorado, it happened more times than she could count. “Thank you.” A wave of homesickness hit her. “Maybe you’re right, Jill. It would be nice to be around people who know me.”
“Good! So think about it. Talk to Karen. Now, drink your latte, and then we’ll talk you into the romance section. Nora Roberts Land awaits.”
A smile tugged at Meredith’s lips. “I forgot how mom always used to call Nora’s books that. She’d point her finger at dad and say she was taking a few hours to visit Nora Roberts Land, and then she’d seal herself off in the bedroom. Like it was an adult version of Disneyland. Dad never got it.”
“Yeah, but at least he didn’t blame divorce on Nora’s books. Rick-the-Dick’s the kind of man who can’t take responsibility for his cheating, so he blamed it on you—and fiction. Isn’t that the most pathetic thing ever? It’s like blaming teen suicide on Romeo and Juliet. It’s asinine.”
“Actually, I think that’s been done.” She took the last drink of her latte and stood. Tested her balance. “Okay, I’m ready.”
“So strut your stuff over to the romance section.”
Purchase on Amazon