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Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2ngkBEc
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2mWbi9K
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2nmmaxq
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2mEAOSc
Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2ngkBEc
Who is the handsome cowboy who comes into small town Marietta’s chocolate shop every week to buy a box of chocolates? More importantly…who is he buying the chocolates for? These are the questions sales clerk Rosie Linn asks herself as she waits for her sadly neglected childhood home to sell so she can pursue an exciting new career in L.A.
Rosie finds out the answers the day rugged ranch hand Brant Willingham introduces himself and asks for her help in managing the care of his younger sister. Brant’s mother has recently died, leaving him the sole guardian of eighteen-year-old Sara Maria–who has been a puzzle to Brant ever since she began exhibiting signs of autism at age two.
Rosie and Brant come up with a plan. She’ll help with his sister if he handles repairs and a new paint job for her old house. It seems the perfect solution, but a new dilemma is created when the couple start spending time together. Brant discovers he doesn’t want Rosie to sell and leave, and Rosie fears she will have to choose between love and her dreams.
Chocolate is better than men, and so are dogs. At least, that’s what Dakota Parker tells herself as she mends her broken heart and finds forever homes for rescue animals. So far, so good. She can indulge her love of chocolate where she works while her foster dogs provide her with the unconditional love she craves. What more does she need?
Seattle architect Bryce Grayson is counting the days until he can return home to the big city with his father in tow. That is if he can convince his dad to leave Montana. Bryce’s escape plan, however, goes astray when he meets Dakota. Her sweet kisses put the chocolate she sells to shame. Maybe he should be the one to move to Marietta, but could he be happy living in such a small town?
He has until Thanksgiving to decide.
Author website: http://www.melissamcclone.com
Ad exec Krista Martin, while feeling more Grinch than elf, still jumps at the chance to co-chair Marietta’s Secret Santa Society. Why not? Especially since brilliant, attractive, and innovative tech wunderkind Jonah Andrews has agreed to help. He’s well connected and Krista’s hoping for some advice on rebooting her career.
Jonah knows Krista has a not-so-hidden agenda, but sparring with her over cocoa at their Secret Santa meetings is the most fun he’s had since returning to his old hometown. Krista may come across as all business, but Jonah’s positive he’s glimpsed a little girl inside her who wants to believe in Santa… and in love.
Author website: http://www.debrasalonen.com
No more chocolate! No more meddling! No more men!
New Year’s resolutions are great. Announcing them in a crowded bar, with a chocolate martini in her hand? Not Maddie Cash’s finest moment. It’s time this new realtor got serious about her life and this time, she means it.
But when hospital volunteering lands her at the bedside of bruised and battered Mick Meyer, who has no knowledge of Maddie’s reputation – and no memory of the kiss he begged from her during that long, pain-filled night, her best-laid plans are put in jeopardy. It’s not just his sweet tooth that’s tempting her.
The hunky bush pilot with the concussion has an old family property to unload. Making this sale could be Maddie’s professional salvation. But when Mick turns on the charm, she’s in danger of forgetting all her best intentions… on chocolate… on meddling… and especially on men.
Keep your competition close…and your heart even closer.
When Nevada Parker travels to Marietta, Montana, she anticipates enough peace and quiet to finish her PhD dissertation. Cupidville turns out to be anything but quiet. In fact, it looks like Valentine’s Day—her least favorite holiday—exploded all over the small town.
Among the sea of red hearts, “Be Mine” signs, and pink, pink, pink, Nevada spots a flyer for a multi-day race called The Valentine Quest. The grand prize—a luxury tropical vacation—would be the perfect welcome-home gift for her brother who’s leaving the military.
Dustin Decker sure could use a break from giving city slickers sleigh rides. Even with a bum knee from his bull-riding days, the race’s grand prize is as good as his—until he realizes he needs a partner if he wants to win.
When Leah ran off to Southern California, she hoped to leave freezing cold winters and unrequited love behind. She was never meant for a small town life and the timing with her longtime best friend–and secret soul mate–was always hopelessly off.
But after a mishap on the hit reality show Charming, Leah declares her love for Wade nationwide and is publicly dubbed “Lonely Leah.” She returns to Marietta to hide at her family’s home–from the media who wants to turn her into a human interest story, from the townspeople upset with her blunder, and most of all, from Wade, who wants to talk.
It took Leah leaving town to wake Wade Burns up to the reality that he’s head over heels in love with his best friend. But now that she’s back home, she’s giving him the cold shoulder. With chocolate and a grand gesture, can Wade charm his way back into Leah’s heart?
Author website: www.steenaholmes.com
Brian Archer, lawyer and infamous playboy, returns to Greenridge after a long holiday to find his life in ashes. Literally. His condo has burned to the ground, and with it, his delusion that he’s a footloose, fancy-free guy who doesn’t secretly crave a home and a place to belong.
Charlie Williams’ view on relationships is simple—one night, no strings, move on.
But love knows no boundaries when two hearts collide.
Her hair was a dark honey color, hanging straight around her face, swinging down past her shoulder blades. Her face was sweet and heart-shaped, with big blue eyes and a full, pink mouth that was just begging to be nibbled on. A tiny woman, she had on well-worn denim jeans that hugged the sweet curve of her ass like it was their one duty in life. Her V-neck sweater was a dark blue, and she wore a gold locket around her neck that looked old and sentimental, hanging low between her breasts like some sort of siren’s lure.
He stared down at her, realizing that the sleep deprivation had apparently not killed his sex drive. He was suddenly, uncomfortably aware that it’d been forever since he’d even thought about jerking off. Sweet, curvy, girl-next-door types were his greatest weakness, and this woman was all that and more. God, she was beautiful. He just wanted to take a handful of her backside and squeeze.
When financially-strapped actor J.J. McKinney responds to an unusual Help Wanted ad on the bulletin board outside his theater class, he has no idea that he’s in for an evening of improv like no other: posing as the hitherto fabricated boyfriend of one Erika Mills for the duration of a single family reunion. But hey, a job is a job, and if it will help get J.J. back in the good graces of his landlord, he’s completely on board. After all, how bad can one family reunion possibly be?
Enter Erika Mills: only child of one meddling mother, reluctant darling of several devoted yet squabbling aunts and uncles who are sure they know what’s best for her even if none of them can agree on what that is, and beloved grandchild of the tiny white-haired family matriarch who might just be more imp than invalid when it comes to managing family matters in spite of appearances to the contrary.
Throw in a suspicious cousin, an obnoxious ex-boyfriend who is determined to erase that whole “ex” thing from Erika’s vocabulary, and a rash deathbed promise that turned out to be less deathbed and more just a bad case of indigestion, and you get the reunion from hell—at least until the sparks begin to fly for real.
It ain’t Off-Broadway, but it still might turn out to be the role of a lifetime…
Studying ancient Norse mythology is supposed to be hard, but no one warned Caroline it would be life or death.
Caroline Capello’s carefully planned life turns upside-down when Loki, the enigmatic and irresistibly sexy Norse god, appears in her studio apartment, cuts her clothes off, and rocks her world all night long. The next morning, she’s convinced she imagined it all, a result of working too hard and getting too little sleep—until she sees her clothes on the floor, cut down the middle.
Over the course of his unpredictable visits, Caroline questions everything she’s heard about the trickster god and his world. Is he as bad as the myths make him out to be? Will he start Ragnarök, the apocalyptic final battle destined to destroy the gods and ends the Nine Realms?
And does she dare trust him with her heart?
When Loki’s visits stop and Caroline’s other-worldly dreams hint at a dark future, concern for her lover leads her to Val-Hall, the ancient home of Óðinn’s army, where she must put everything she has learned to the test. If she fails, there’s far more than Loki’s life at stake.
The end of the world is on the horizon, and only a graduate student with a crush on a god can prevent it.
Kobo – https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-trickster-s-lover
I told myself I’d only work until midnight. When midnight came I made another cup of tea and said I would only work until one in the morning. Now the clock above my tiny half-oven blinked quarter to two, and I ignored it.
“Girnud,” I muttered to myself, trying out the words. I rolled them on my tongue, imagining Viking ships and longhouses, imagining woodsmoke, the spray of salt from the ocean.
And then I was no longer alone in my apartment.
There was, perhaps, a crackle of electricity in the air, a quick gust of cold on the back of my neck, like a melting snowflake.
I looked up from the table. There was a very tall man standing in the middle of my apartment. I stood and stumbled backward, bumping awkwardly against the wall. Our eyes met, and my breath caught in my throat. He was unreasonably attractive.
“Uh, hi?” I stammered, staring at his full lips and long, fiery red hair.
He smiled, and my heart surged. Damn, what a smile. I fought the insane urge to smile back and tore my eyes off him, glancing at the door to my apartment. It was still closed, bolted, with the chain drawn. How did…?
I turned back to him, and he moved a step closer. He wore strange clothes; they looked like leather, black with streaks of gold and red, with an enormous cloak rippling behind him. His fingers were delicate, and his ice-blue eyes seemed to be laughing. He bent toward me, so close our lips were almost touching. So close I could smell him. Woodsmoke. Salt spray. Cold, and leather.
“Hello,” he whispered, his breath warm on my neck.
My skin prickled, and I trembled as my body flushed with heat. I swallowed and tried to think. It’s the middle of the night, I told myself. And there’s a strange man in your apartment. I turned to face him, my gaze lingering on the soft curves of his full lips, wondering how they would feel –
I shook my head to stop myself. You should not be thinking about kissing him.
“What are you – ” The words died in my throat as a jolt of recognition surged through my body. I know you, I thought. I’ve been reading about you since I was thirteen.
“Loki?” I whispered, my voice sounding very small. “Loki… of the Ӕsir?”
His eyes danced. “Very good. I am Loki, son of Laufeyiar.” He gave me another slow, incendiary smile. “And right now, I’m admiring you.”
The room suddenly felt very warm. I took a deep breath. “That’s not possible,” I whispered.
He tilted his head to one side and raised an eyebrow. “What’s not possible?”
Neither of those things are possible.
I don’t know, I thought. Maybe I met a god last month. Or maybe I’m losing my mind.
“Thanks for rescuing me this morning,” I said, avoiding his question.
It was Christmas Day, sunny and a perfect seventy-five degrees in San Diego. We were walking along Coronado Beach, barefoot, my jeans rolled up to my knees. I’d flown in from Chicago last night, and Mom had given me a solid twelve hours of sympathy about breaking up with Doug. But as soon as the presents were opened this morning, she was back to her litany of suggestions about the various ways I could be less of a disappointment to the family.
“Caroline, you could at least wear a little lipstick,” Mom said.
I nodded under the glare of the white aluminum Christmas tree. My mom had given me a Mary Kay makeup kit the size and shape of a cinder block, and I shifted it precariously close to my knees so I could reach my mimosa.
“You’ve just got to get back on that horse,” she continued. “I’m sure there are plenty of very nice boys out there in Chicago. Go have a few dates!”
I nodded again, draining my mimosa in one gulp. I felt like the makeup kit was cutting off circulation in my legs.
“And you know, Caroline,” she said, dropping her voice to a stage whisper, “it wouldn’t hurt to find someone who makes a good living. Because honestly, I don’t know how you expect to support yourself studying Greek gods.”
“Norse, Mom,” I muttered. “I study Norse mythology.”
Mom threw her hands in the air, rolling her eyes.
My brother Geoff came to my rescue then, offering to get the two of us out of Mom’s hair for an hour or so and promising to be back in time to help cook Christmas dinner. And we’d come here, to my favorite place in all of San Diego, the long, golden crescent of Coronado Beach.
He nodded at me, glancing out across the ocean. I followed his gaze, shading my eyes as I looked over the waves. I could just see a freighter on the horizon, dwarfed by the vastness of the sunlit Pacific.
“Some pretty weird shit happened to me this fall,” I said.
“Weirder than normal?”
I snorted a laugh. Weirder than normal, indeed. Weirder than me, the only person in my family with black hair and pale skin? The one who spent her sweet sixteen summer teaching herself to read German while everyone else snuck off to Mexico and had magical first kisses on the beach? The one who decided to move to Chicago and study ancient Viking gods while every other person in my family ran Capello’s Landscaping & Tree Surgery?
“Yeah,” I said. “Weirder than normal.”
My brother nodded. “Weird shit happens to our family,” he said. “You wanna talk about it?”
I looked over the Pacific. Seagulls whirled and dove into the waves, their lonely cries echoing off the beach. Beyond the breakers, the ocean was a pale, translucent blue. Like his eyes, I thought. Just like his eyes. My heart tightened painfully in my chest.
“Not just yet,” I said.
I was in no rush to tell my brother about Loki.
“Well, no…” She hedged, looking intrigued.
“Then who cares? Besides, if you’re going to travel with us and be at all of our events, wearing formal looking stuff like that,” I motioned the length of her body, “will make you stick out.”
She did that shoulder squaring thing again, trying to slip back into her uptight niche where she felt safe. “I’m not here to party with the band or fall into the groupie crowd, Kade. I’m here to pull your collective asses out of the fire.”
The way my name rolled off her lips made my dick spring to life.
Not good. At. All.
And the no-nonsense persona she was working so hard to maintain was making her even hotter than she already was.
“Now, back to the issue of my lodging,” she began, “is it agreeable that I stay on the bus with you and your brother?”
I had to bite my cheek to keep from laughing, she was hilariously uptight. I’d work on that, though. “Yes, Aubrey, it’s agreeable. Or would you prefer to be called Miss Taylor?”
“And why would you assume it’s not Mrs.?” She bit back at my snarky tone.
I glanced at her left hand and shrugged. “No ring, and what husband in his right mind would leave his wife all alone with five bed-hopping, bar-brawling, trouble-making rock stars?”
“I’m happy to hear that you’re aware of your shortcomings.”
“Nothing about me is short, sweetheart.” I quipped, giving her a slow wink.
Shit, I was flirting with her. What was the matter with me?
Her eyes flashed and she narrowed them on me as she looked up. “I didn’t work this hard for this long to allow the likes of you to call me sweetheart, Mr. Edenfield. You are to address me only as Aubrey or Ms. Taylor, understand? I am not now, nor will I ever be, your damn sweetheart.”
She spun on her heel and stalked off in the other direction, probably to gather her stuff.
She was self-righteous, uptight, judgmental, and too prissy for her own good.
God help me, everything about her turned me on.
Let’s get one thing straight. I am not your typical girl. Sure I’ve got all the parts, but I’ve been a stubborn, irreverent tomboy since the womb, as my Irish father would proudly attest. Despite my Irish blood, I’ve had a bit of bad luck here and there—I recently trusted the wrong guy and got derailed in my professional pursuits. But I’ve bounced back. With my shields firmly in place, I thought nothing, or no one, could touch me again. Until he did. And he just might make this tomboy do the girliest thing in the world—fall head over heels in love. Of all the damn luck…
I’m a pretty lucky guy. I have a phenomenal family, a career I love, and I’m building a brand-new life back in my hometown. And, not to be a jerk about it, but I do more than all right with the ladies. Everything’s been going according to plan—like I said, I’m a lucky guy.
That was, until my luck ran out.
Until I met the girl I call “Irish.”
Irony can go kiss my a$$.
I was struck again by the thought that everyone in the world seemed to be good with kids but me. And how unfair was it that Jake Beckett was not only hot as sin and a wizard in the sack, but he was also nice to small people and fainting women?
What was I supposed to do with that?
We finally pulled into the driveway and I hopped out quickly to avoid any awkward assistance that might be offered. Seeming to need no invitation, Jake followed us inside and closed the door behind him.
I took a deep breath and firmed my back as well as my resolve.
“As you can see, we’re all fine. I appreciate your concern—and the burritos—but everything is under control. We’ll go ahead and get on with our day and you can get on with yours.” I held my hand out toward the door like some damn restaurant hostess.
“Uh-huh,” he replied and had the nerve to lean against the entryway wall and put his hands in his pockets.
What was this? Was he posing for a bachelor-of- the-month calendar?
I performed the hostess gesture yet again.
This time it received a grin.
“What?!” I demanded.
He looked me up and down. “Uh-huh.”
I became acutely aware of my attire and general appearance in that moment. I could feel the heat rising to my cheeks.
My hair was in a messy ponytail and I was dressed in athletic shorts and a men’s t-shirt. I didn’t need to look down to know there was a ketchup stain on the hem and a dinosaur riding a bicycle on the front. I have no explanation.
I urged myself to ignore Jake’s look and not even attempt to interpret it.
This moment perfectly captured the reason all Jake’s texts and calls had gone unanswered over the past three weeks.
He wasn’t texting me.
He was texting the girl from the wedding.
The girl I’d pretended to be for one night.
The girl I would never be.
The one I couldn’t afford to be.
(Copyright 2017 Sylvie Stewart)
For the entire week leading up to the big day, I’d walked back and forth across my living room in a pair of ridiculously high heels, determined that I would not humiliate myself by falling on my face in front of everyone I knew.
I’d thought I was prepared.
I was wrong.
I felt a twinge of something when I woke up, but I brushed it aside, as there were many things to be done—the worst of which involved Fiona plucking errant hairs from my face that I insisted I needed to keep for warmth when winter came. She didn’t share my feelings.
But, as the day progressed, there was no denying what was happening to me.
I was falling victim to the oldest cliché in the book. My brother was getting married, my friends were in happy relationships, and I was single and about to turn thirty. I could almost physically feel the cloak of the proverbial Old Maid descending upon my shoulders.
And that right there was how a tall, handsome, smooth-talking guy by the name of Jake Beckett worked the second oldest cliché in the book and got laid by a bridesmaid.
(Copyright 2017 Sylvie Stewart)
Jake finished his entire bottle in one go. I watched his throat work as he swallowed, and my knees sent an S.O.S. signal to the rest of my body. We’re going down!
“Are these ‘complicated’ things part of the reason you won’t go out with me?”
He was really going there, wasn’t he? I couldn’t seem to catch a break.
I stuttered in my response. “I-I- It’s hard to explain that.”
He studied me and then nodded, his expression turning knowing. “Question.” He moved a step closer. “Are you attracted to me?”
Ha! Like my horny text and my jumping him at the wedding hadn’t been clear enough!
Add in my skin’s propensity to mimic a pomegranate and I may as well just take out a billboard—Take me now, Jake Beckett, you sexy beast!
I felt like my entire body was about to combust. “Um,” was all I could manage.
“I’ll take that as a yes.” His lips quirked up in a cocky, lopsided smirk.
Correction: hot jerk.
(Copyright 2017 Sylvie Stewart)