Sunshine and Rain by M. Mabie
Standalone small-town romance, City Limits #2
Release Date: October 28
Welcome to Wynne, population 3402.
No rockstars. No major politicians. No media moguls.
Things don’t change quickly in a small town, except when they do. It’s been pouring rain all summer long, and the disc jockey and local farmer are all of the sudden attached at the hip. It’s not only the rising river getting deeper and deeper.
This is your basic water tower painting, tractor driving, tailgate cooler packing kind a guy chases the single, blonde, radio vixen with mosquito bite rage from his youth type of romance. Or is it the other way around?
Low on drama. High on Love.
Grab an umbrella because it’s a long wet summer.
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Book One in the City Limits Series: ROOTS AND WINGS is currently ON SALE for 99¢ or FREE with a KindleUnlimited Subscription!
The butterfly effect: The theory in which one small action, seemingly innocent, can set in motion an entire chain of events with catastrophic results. When Kira Riley first collided with Owen Stark she never dreamed the path it would set her on. Separating herself from Stark, she was determined to achieve her mission. No more distractions. But the wheels of fate had already begun to turn. Ghosts of the past had been awakened.
Before meeting Kira, Owen Stark had been dead inside. He had forgotten how to live and love. He tried to fill the void with anything and everything until he was just numb. From the first moment he crashed into Kira, the flesh and blood man knew there was no going back. She was the drug he must have. He knew he should have walked away. Now that he has crossed the line, he would stop at nothing to have her again.
A relentless journey but one that has started the dominoes falling in a way they could have never predicted. Sometimes the danger in the shadows is the darkness of your own desire.
I’m just a girl who likes to daydream. Sometimes I write them down to share. Even as a little girl teachers would tell my parents I live in a world of my own. The literary world was my safe haven. Then we grow up. I practiced medicine in the ER and urgent care for the last 15 years. I started writing again while still working in the ER but put it aside when we opened our own clinic. Until last year my husband and I owned our own practice, we had two children and lived a somewhat normal life. Then in the span of a year we sold our practice, bought a 96 acre farm in the hills of West Virginia and adopted 3 of our patients ( ages 2,3,4) bringing our kid count up to five. It has been a crazy year full of ups and downs and learning to laugh at ourselves. Being mostly brought up in the city, managing a working farm with real farm creatures and ever lurking bears has been an adventure. Not to mention adjusting to being a mom of FIVE. But when things are rough I just laugh and tell stories. Because at the end of the day sometime laughter and love is all you have. Somewhere in the midst of kids and chickens, I managed to finish my first novel and dive deeply into the second. Writing at night or early in the morning while all the littles are asleep lets me escape into another world. I hope that you will enjoy the journey of the story as much as I have writing it. Pursue your dreams as if limits to your abilities do not exist.
Grand Slam: The Boys of Summer
by Heidi McLaughlin releases on May 23rd!
Pre-order Available NOW!
Coming… May, 2017
The third novel in New York Times bestselling author Heidi McLaughlin’s Boys of Summer baseball series.
A beast at the plate, Travis Kidd is a superstar for the Boston Renegades. But when baseball isn’t occupying his time, Travis – named Boston’s Most Eligible Bachelor – is known as a ladies’ man.
Saylor Blackwell knows sports. As a public relations specialists, her focus is on the athletes. The hours are long, the job stressful, and she’s prohibited from dating any of the overly friendly athletes, but the result is what matters – she’s financially able to care for her daughter.
When a drunken night spent with Travis threatens that, Saylor knows she’s made a mistake. Unfortunately, when he’s accused of a horrible crime, it causes a PR nightmare and forces Saylor to come to his rescue. But when Saylor’s ex comes back demanding custody, it might up to Travis to save her right back…
The Boys of Summer
© Heidi McLaughlin, 2016
Chapter 1 – Travis
The one I’m eyeing for the night bends at her waist and lines her pool stick up with the cue ball. She slowly pulls the wooden rod through her fingers, until the felt top finally connects. The hard white plastic ball rolls toward her target, hitting it perfectly and stalling as the blue-striped ball rolls into the pocket. I let out a massive sigh and lean on my stick, waiting my turn. I should’ve known better when she approached me, asking if I wanted to play a game or two of billiards with her. I know better than to let a good-looking woman hustle me out of money but I wasn’t thinking with my right head. I never am, and once again I’m getting my balls get busted, no pun intended, by a pool shark.
“Sweetheart, are you going to let me play? My balls are getting lonely.” If she thinks I’m crude, she doesn’t say anything. In fact, she looks at me from over her shoulder and winks before shimmying her ass toward my crotch. My internal groan is epic. I’ve been watching her bend, lick her lips, show me her ample cleavage, and shake her ass for almost an hour. Not to mention, she brushes against me each time she passes me. And the touching isn’t subtle. I can read her loud and clear, all the way from her tight as-sin jeans to her plunging neckline.
“I can’t help it if you suck.”
“Do you?” I ask, stepping in behind her. My crotch is lined up perfectly with her ass, earning me another hair-tossing look over her shoulder.
She stands and turns to face me, resting her ass on the edge of the table. “What do you have in mind?” Her finger trails down the front of my shirt until she reaches the buckle of my belt. The tug is slight, but definitely felt. Message received loud and clear.
“What’s your name?”
“Are names important?”
“Of course. When I demand that you come for me, I need to know what to call you.”
“Demand?” she questions.
“I’m greedy like that,” I tell her, placing my cue stick against the table as I step closer to her. I lean in and try to get a whiff of her perfume, but a mix between the stale air from the bar and the beer on her breath makes it hard to tell what she’s wearing. I do love a woman who takes the time to dabble the perfect scent on her skin though.
“My balls aren’t blue, darling, and haven’t been in years.”
“No, my name is Blue.”
“That’s a very unique name,” I say as my hand rests on her hip.
“What can I say? I’m a unique woman, Travis.”
Ah, she knows my name. That’s usually how things go for me. Rarely am I given the opportunity to introduce myself. Everyone knows who I am, and while I enjoy the fruits of my labor, sometimes anonymity would be nice. One day, I’d like to talk to a woman who doesn’t know that I’m Travis Kidd, right fielder for the Boston Renegades and one of the town’s most eligible bachelors. “You know who I am?”
“Doesn’t everyone? I’m a Boston girl; I know my Renegades.”
I nod and reach for my beer. It’s the off-season, and technically I shouldn’t be here. I usually head south for the winter but opted to stay home this time. After a long season, one that saw my former managers die and one of my closest friends on the team become a dad to twins, I thought I’d stay around and see what the winter had to offer. Aside from the cold, I haven’t found much, except Bruins hockey and Celtics basketball. Those games have been the highlight of my time off.
The pickings for women have been slim. Without trying to bag on the female population, it’s evident that they’re seasonal as well. Right now, the puck bunnies, gridiron groupies, and court whores are in full effect, and the cleat chasers are resting like the rest of the baseball world. Maybe I should’ve been a dual-sport athlete. This way I would’ve had the best of both worlds.
“What?” I ask, mentally shaking the cobwebs out.
“Where’d you go? It’s your turn?” Blue nods toward the table, and I look over her shoulder to see the cue ball sitting there.
“Why don’t you help me?” I know how to play the game of pool, but since she seems to be a pro, why shouldn’t she show me? I would’ve happily slid up behind her and taught her how to handle her stick but she took the fun out of it.
Instead, she’s off to my side and leaning into me, giving me a perfect sideways glance down her shirt. I smirk, ignoring everything she tells me, and watch as her mounds of flesh move each time her hand does. They’re real, that’s for sure. None of that fake silicon shit on this chick.
“And that’s how it’s done,” she says, righting herself. She continues to slightly lean over the table though, jutting her chest out for me to ogle. I cock my head to the side and wink before taking aim at the cue on the table.
My first shot goes in, and the second quickly follows. I line up the third, and that is when I see a raven-haired beauty nursing a drink at the bar.
Saylor Blackwell is off limits to anyone her agency represents. That includes me. Although I wish it didn’t. Saylor is the one I would’ve switched agents for if she told me to, but I fucked that up much I like I screw everything up. When she needed me, I wasn’t there. And I haven’t spoken to her since.
It’s my dumb luck that she’s sitting at the bar with her long, slender legs crossed, and she’s dressed like she recently got off work. Her eyes are set on the television, ignoring the gaggle of men staring at her. I remember that she was a hard nut to crack back when I wanted to know her better. I can’t imagine what she’s like now that she’s more successful.
My last shot is sunk into the corner pocket. “Eight ball, right side,” I say, nodding in the same direction I plan to send the black ball in order to finish this game. I’m in a rush now, eager to speak with Saylor. I know I shouldn’t but I can’t help myself.
“Where ya going?” Blue calls out.
“To the bar. Rack ‘em,” I tell her. It’s not a lie. I am going to the bar but with the intention of speaking to another woman. I’m smooth though, and I can easily play it off while I order another round of drinks.
“Two please.” I put up two fingers as I motion toward the bartender. Leaning in, I know I’m blocking Saylor’s view of the television, which is all in my game plan.
“Travis,” she says coldly. We have a history. A small one, but it’s there. I often remember the night we spent together and the regret that was on her face when we were done. I had never been kicked out of an apartment before that night. Usually, once I’m satisfied, I leave. With Saylor, everything was backwards. It’s like she used me to scratch an itch, and once I took care of that, she didn’t need me anymore. “What brings you in?”
She looks everywhere but at me. “I’m meeting a client.”
“And nursing your what?” I take her drink from her hand and sniff. “Scotch? When did you start drinking the hard shit?”
That gets her to look at me. Her glare is deadly as her blue eyes penetrate into mine. “As if you know anything about me.”
“I know enough.”
“You don’t know shit, Travis Kidd. Go back to your booty call. She’s looking at me like she’s ready for a cat fight, and I assure you, you’re not worth fighting for.”
Saylor turns, giving me the cold shoulder. If I weren’t so stunned by her outburst, which I did not deserve, I’d tease her. But I have a feeling that there’s something bothering her, and I’m the last person she needs making shit worse.
With the bottles of beer between my fingers, I go back to the pool table where Blue is indeed throwing daggers at Saylor’s back.
“Down, kitty. She works for my agent.” I run my hand down her arm, trying to diffuse the situation. Jealous women usually turn me off, and this should be my sign to hit the road except I’m an idiot and want to stay mostly so I can watch Saylor.
Taking Blue by her hand, I lead us over to the stools, and I sit down, pulling her between my legs. My hand is planted firmly on her leg right under her butt check. It’s a risky move, especially with all the cameras around, but I don’t care right now. It’s the off-season. I’m allowed to have a little bit of fun.
“You have nothing to be jealous over,” I tell her. If anything, I’m trying to appease her.
“We good? Wanna go back to kicking my ass at pool?”
She looks over at the table and nods. “You rack, and I’ll break.” Blue saunters away, giving me space to watch Saylor, who turns and makes eye contact with me. I wish I could tell what she’s thinking. Is she second-guessing her harsh words? I am. I want to go back over and offer to pick her tab. Or ask how she’s getting home. It’s late, and the roads are shit. If she’s driving, she shouldn’t be drinking. She has a kid that depends on her.
“I’m ready,” Blue says, thrusting the stick in my face. Her words catch me off-guard. Is she ready to play another game or two of pool? I hope so because I have no intention of leaving as long as Saylor is at the bar. Or is she ready for me to fuck her and never ask for her number? Because that is bound to happen as well.
I break, sending the balls off in every direction. Four drop. Two of each giving me the choice of what I want to be. Blue is yammering in my ear about the set-up and which would be the best. Her angles only work for her though, and I see that I can run the table on her if I line up correctly.
“We should’ve bet,” I tell her as I walk around the table.
“I’d hate to hustle you out of your money, Travis.”
I laugh off her comment and proceed to clear the table. She huffs when the eight ball falls into the designated pocket.
“Well would you look at that,” I say, taking a bow. Blue pushes me lightly and falls into my arms. Her lips are on mine before I can push her away, and doing so now would be embarrassing for her so I kiss her back and find myself opening my eyes to watch Saylor watch me.
As soon as I pull away, Saylor is sliding off the bar stool and heading toward the door.
“Be right back. I need some fresh air.” A true gentleman would’ve invited his lady friend outside, but that is not who I am.
“Do you need a ride home?” I ask, as soon as I see Saylor standing near the curb. “And what happened to your client?”
It didn’t strike me as odd earlier when she said she was meeting a client, but it does now. I’ve never met anyone from the agency at a bar, let alone this late at night.
“How about that ride home?”
“Travis,” she draws out my name and then drops her head into her hands. Without thinking, I pull her into my side. “Come on, Saylor. It’s a ride. Nothing else.”
“What the hell is going on? I thought you were taking me home?” Blue speaks loud enough for everyone on the block to hear.
My arm drops, and Saylor steps away from me. I turn at the sound of Blue’s voice behind me.
“I’ll be in. Give me a minute.” I smile, hoping to placate Blue but it doesn’t work.
“I see some things never change,” Saylor says as she steps off the curb and waves at a cab only to be passed by.
Shaking my head, I push my hands into my pockets for a bit of warmth. If I knew Saylor would be out here when I returned, I’d run in and grab my jacket. “It’s not like that.”
“What, do you like her or something?” The sound of Blue’s voice grates on my nerves. Saylor looks over my shoulder and rolls her eyes.
“Or something,” I say, without taking my eyes off Saylor.
As soon as a taxi pulls up to the curb, Saylor is sliding in.
I make a split second decision to get in with her, but not before Blue yells at me. “Where the fuck are you going?”
I answer her by slamming the door shut. I have Blue on the outside screaming and Saylor looking at me like she’s going to kill me. She opens the door, and I hear, “Fuck you, Travis Kidd. You’ll pay for this.” And before I realize what’s happening, Saylor is out of the car and the cab is speeding down the road.
**Also Available on Heidi’s Website here: **
About the Author
Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in picturesque Vermont, with her husband and two daughters. Also renting space in their home is an over-hyper Beagle/Jack Russell, Buttercup and a Highland West/Mini Schnauzer, JiLL and her brother, Racicot.
When she isn’t writing one of the many stories planned for release, you’ll find her sitting court-side during either daughter’s basketball games
Heidi’s first novel, Forever My Girl, is currently in production to be a major motion picture.
NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author
Title: Fighting For A Chance
Author: Linda Oaks
Series: The Chasing Series
Genre: New Adult
Publisher: Blue Tulip Publishing
What happens when you fall for the enemy?
It all began with a secret.
A cross of paths that altered a life.
Iris Malone had a plan of revenge. She searched for the man known as “The Savage.”
Chance Logan was one of the most promising heavyweight contenders on the planet. Her plan was simple, to make a savage fall to his knees. She would break his heart like
he’d broken so many countless others before her.
But sometimes even the best laid plans can begin to unravel.
What happens when you fall for the enemy?
When you’re in danger of losing your heart to the man you promised to make suffer?
When lines are crossed, and it’s too late to turn back, you have no choice but to live
with the decisions you make.
Will Iris’s plan for revenge ruin the chance at a love of a lifetime?
Will she fight for a chance to love a savage or will she lose everything when the truth is
Someone was going down.
Someone would pay.
Do you care to place your bets as to who will be standing at the end of the final round?
**Fighting For A Chance is an Interconnected Standalone in The Chasing Series. Each book features a different couple.**
Five minutes before closing, she was walking my way. There was a ghost of a smile curving her lips. Come to poppa. “It’s closing time,” she announced, and picked up a glass from the table. “Don’t make me have Chunk throw you out.”
Shit, was she serious? The bouncer throwing me out? My chest started to shake. I threw back my head, laughing. Damn, she was funny. I wasn’t expecting that. “I’d like to see him try. You’re a regular little comedian, aren’t you, Iris?”
“I get by,” she said saucily, and then leaned across the table, reaching for the last glass sitting near my hand. The next thing I knew, my fingers were wrapped around her wrist. It was instinct, to take what I wanted. She was trying to play a game with me, but little did she know I was a pro at this shit. Gasping, she stared wide-eyed back at me. There it was, that reaction I wanted. Awareness.
Linda Oaks has always had a passion for books. At the age of five, she was a book of the month club member. Her love for books eventually led her to a love of writing. She resides in Eastern Kentucky with her husband, two children, five dogs and a pet rabbit named Dozer. She can be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. She can also be reached by email at email@example.com. She loves connecting with her readers.
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From NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely, comes a swoony new standalone romance…
THE SEXY ONE!
Want a romance guaranteed to make you melt? Get ready to fall in love with THE SEXY ONE!
“Swoony, passionate and oh-so-romantic!”
~NYT Bestselling author K Bromberg
“Insanely romantic and so genuinely charming…”
From the NYT Bestselling author of MISTER O, comes a sexy new standalone romance…
Let me count the ways why falling into forbidden love is not my wisest move…
1. She works with me every single day.
Did I mention she’s gorgeous, sweet, kind and smart?
2. She works in my home.
Playing with my five-year-old daughter. Teaching my little girl. Cooking for my princess. Which means…
3. She’s the nanny.
And that makes her completely off-limits…But it doesn’t stop me from wanting her. All of her.
The other nannies in this city don’t call him the Sexy One for nothing. My boss, the amazingly wonderful single father to the girl I take care of every day is ridiculously hot, like movie star levels with those arms, and those eyes, and that body. Not to mention, the way he dotes on his little girl melts me all over. But what really makes my knees weak are the times when his gaze lingers on me. In secret. When no one else is around.
I can’t risk my job for a chance at something more…can I? But I don’t know how to resist him much longer either…
With all the heat, heart and humor readers have come to expect, this newest standalone will make you laugh, swoon and feel like you’re falling in love!
iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble
Add it to Goodreads here!
A swoony, forbidden standalone contemporary romance, THE SEXY ONE is a forbidden love story, the romantic tale of a single father falling head over heels for the smart, kind and beautiful nanny. Resistance is hard as these two fall deeply in love while she works in his home. But forbidden romances are fraught with their own challenges, and nothing comes easily for this couple. Told in dual POV, THE SEXY ONE is being called Lauren Blakely’s most romantic novel yet. THE SEXY ONE is swoony, sweet, hot and forbidden.
“A good old-fashioned love story with a forbidden twist.”
~Bookalicious Babe Blog
“I want to talk to you about the other day.” He sounds so serious.
All of a sudden, the weight of my mistake crashes down. “Are you firing me?” I blurt out.
His jaw drops. “What?”
“I’m sorry,” I say, and the wild anxieties consume me once more. “I love this job, and I love working with Hayden, and I didn’t mean to jeopardize it by . . .”
By making out with you? By touching you? By murmuring your name when you kissed me senseless in the cab, and would you please just do it again?
He steps closer. My stomach makes like a skydiver.
“You did not jeopardize a thing. I’m not firing you. I promise.” His blue eyes are locked to mine. “I hope I didn’t make you uncomfortable. And I hope I didn’t lose you, either. You’re so good at what you do, and I value your skills so much. You’re great with Hayden, and I don’t want to mess that up. I’m sorry for crossing the line.”
I shake my head. “It’s okay. I crossed it, too.”
He licks his lips. “And I really appreciated you inviting me out with your friends. I wanted to go, but I didn’t want to mess up your night. I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable.”
A grin threatens to take over my face because my heart soars. I thought he was turning me down. Instead, he was thinking of me. “You wouldn’t have messed it up.”
“I wouldn’t have?”
“No.” I latch onto Harper’s advice. Talk to him. “I wanted you there.”
My breath comes fast, and the hairs on my arms stand on end. We’re so near to each other—our words, our voices, our bodies. Everything in me reaches for him.
“I’m glad,” he whispers.
“And you don’t make me uncomfortable. I promise.”
He doesn’t say anything in response. Just nods. I press my teeth into my lips. My back is against the sink, and he’s standing so close I can smell him. The faint scent of his soap intoxicates me. He must have gone to the gym after work and taken a shower, and oh God, now I’m imagining him naked in the shower, soaping up his strong body. I go up in flames.
“What happened in the cab was”—he pauses, as if he’s searching for the right word—“crazy.” But the way he says it in a voice full of longing doesn’t sound like crazy-bad. It sounds like . . .
“Crazy-good,” I supply.
He nods. “So good,” he whispers, and inches closer.
“It was so good,” I echo, my voice breathy, full of this potent need for him.
He stares at me, his eyes brimming with heat. I exhale, and my lips part slightly. He’s looking at my mouth now, and I’m burning all over.
His hands are in my hair, and his lips crush mine. My fingers race up his shirt and around his neck. I pull him against me, his strong, hard body aligned with mine. His erection presses against my belly, and the realization that he’s already hard thrills me. Sparks fly through me as I register how hard he is, and my God, I want him. I want to feel him slide into me, I want to take him deep into my body. I want him to know what he does to me, too—that I’m as turned on as he is, and I can’t stop kissing him.
His big hands curl around my head, and I moan into his mouth. I love how much bigger he is than I am—taller, broader, stronger. He meets every primal desire I have to be taken. I want this man to consume me. I want to be under him, I want to be pinned by him—I want the full weight of him moving over me.
His lips are demanding, coaxing out more and more kisses from me. More murmurs, more sighs. As I arch into him, he groans, rough and husky.
Then, he breaks the kiss.
“This is bad,” he says firmly, his breath coming heavily. But then, he’s not so certain at all. “Is this bad?”
“Yes,” I answer quickly. “It’s bad. But it’s so good.”
I always look forward to a release from Lauren Blakely because I know I am good for a few hours of being happily lost in someone else life. There be some bumps in the road.. but I know there will also be fun and sexy times ahead – and The Sexy Ones lived up to everything I have come to expect!
You want to say that The Sexy One has that touch of taboo because come on sexy, irresistible single dad and the gorgeous, quirky nanny… that practically screams TABOO at you. You figure there is some creepy that went on here… some stereotypical thing… preying on the innocent young nanny. But this is so far from what Lauren Blakely lays to in this wonderful romance. Instead we have Simon, a man, a dad who is everything you could ever dream up in a daddy. He will make you swoon just from watching him with his daughter. It isn’t that she has him wrapped around her little finger… it is that he is devoted to being there for her. To making sure her life is enriched even when he can’t be with her. And that HE learns how to do all those little things that a girl may need in her life.. like braiding her hair – seriously HEART MELTING! Then there is Abby, the nanny, she is super smart, and loving, she dotes on his daughter and she is quirky. And the chemistry between the two is undeniable.
I just adore reading books with characters that have actual personalities. Quirks that make you actually able to picture them and see them as REAL people. And Lauren Blakely brings these characters to life so well. I couldn’t get enough of them. The Sexy Ones was a delightful, fast read that I just didn’t want to end! I wanted to stay trapped in the book with this fun and sexy couple and just live vicariously through them. Yes there were some bumps. Yes there was the push and pull as they had to decide should we or shouldn’t we cross hat line… but once they did… MMMMM was it worth it!
I definitely recommend this read. It is a standalone that will brighten your day and warm your night!
I received a complimentary copy of The Sexy Ones.
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About Lauren Blakely:
Since self-publishing her debut romance novel CAUGHT UP IN US three years ago, Lauren Blakely has sold more than 1 million books. She is known for her sexy contemporary romance style that’s full of heat, heart and humor. A devout fan of cake and canines, Lauren has plotted entire novels while walking her four-legged friends. She lives in California with her family. With eleven New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than sixty times. Her bestselling series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire as well as standalone romantic comedies like BIG ROCK, MISTER O and WELL HUNG, which were instant New York Times Bestsellers. In the fall she’ll release THE SEXY ONE, a swoony contemporary romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter at laurenblakely.com/newsletter.
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