USA Today Bestselling Author J.L. Berg’s first YA title, THE TATTERED GLOVES, is available now! We love Willow’s story so much. Find out more about THE TATTERED GLOVES below!
About THE TATTERED GLOVES
Don’t look up.
Never make eye contact.
Those were the words I lived by growing up, the words that protected me in an unsafe home. But words are only letters and eventually even they couldn’t keep his hands off me.
Hoping to leave behind the shattered life of my past, I find myself in a boring, small town, with an aunt I’ve never met and at a school I loathe.
But soon I learn, not everything in this world is as black and white as I’ve determined. Sometimes those we are so quick to judge often need a second, third or even fourth time to make a first impression.
And often, there are friendships and even love waiting just around the corner, if we are brave enough to take the first step.
Am I brave? Or will I hide behind these tattered gloves of mine forever?
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My normally quiet nature seemed to take a backseat when it came to this guy. He made me angry, flustered, and… something else I couldn’t put my finger on.
No, that wasn’t it.
“What is your problem?” I blurted out, chasing behind him.
“My problem?” he asked, spinning around to face me.
Suddenly, he was too close. I could feel his breath on my face, his presence looming over me.
I took a step back.
He seemed to notice the unease settle around me, and a bit of the edge he carried chipped away.
His next words were said with a slightly softer quality. “Look, maybe we got off on the wrong foot. I didn’t mean to sound so harsh, but if the store doesn’t do well, it’s on me. My dad thinks it’s a waste of time.”
“And you don’t?”
I didn’t know what a rich, popular kid wanted with an old bookstore, but I kept my mouth shut.
He shrugged. “We have nothing in this crummy town, not even a movie theater. Last month, I wanted to see the new Marvel movie, and my friends and I had to drive thirty minutes away just to see it.”
“Haven’t you ever heard of Netflix?” I asked.
“It’s not the same as seeing it on the big screen.”
“I wouldn’t know,” I replied.
“What?” He grinned. “You’ve never been to a movie?”
The way he said it was meant as a joke, but all laughter died when I shook my head.
“I mean, I’ve watched several on TV but never at a theater,” I answered, not able to meet his stare.
“I thought you were from the city.”
My eyes flew up to his.
“Oh, so you really did think you were invisible. That doesn’t work around here, Mittens.”
My brows furrowed as I tried to figure out what he meant until he pointed to my gloves.
“My name is Willow,” I corrected.
Sam just kept smiling.
“Word of advice, Mittens. The less you try to be invisible, the less interested people will be.”
I let out a heavy sigh, snatching the remainder of the books from the counter.
As he’d reminded me earlier, I wasn’t being paid to mess around.
And I sure as hell didn’t need life lessons from an over privileged daddy’s boy.
I hated this place.
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About J.L. Berg
J.L. Berg is the USA Today bestselling author of the Ready Series, The Walls Duet, and the Lost & Found Duet. She is a California native living in the beautiful state of historic Virginia. Married to her high school sweetheart, they have two beautiful girls that drive them batty on a daily basis. When she’s not writing, you will find her with her nose stuck in a romance novel, in a yoga studio or devouring anything chocolate. J.L. Berg is represented by Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, LLC.
The night I met Drew Jagger, he’d just broken into my new Park Avenue office.
I dialed 9-1-1 before proceeding to attack him with my fancy new Krav Maga skills.
He quickly restrained me, then chuckled, finding my attempted assault amusing.
Of course, my intruder had to be arrogant.
Only, turned out, he wasn’t an intruder at all.
Drew was the rightful occupant of my new office. He’d been on vacation while his posh space was renovated.
Which was how a scammer got away with leasing me office space that wasn’t really available for rent.
I was swindled out of ten grand.
The next day, after hours at the police station, Drew took pity on me and made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. In exchange for answering his phones while his secretary was out, he’d let me stay until I found a new place.
I probably should have acted grateful and kept my mouth shut when I overheard the advice he was spewing to his clients. But I couldn’t help giving him a piece of my mind.
I never expected my body to react every time we argued. Especially when that was all we seemed to be able to do.
The two of us were complete opposites. Drew was a bitter, angry, gorgeous-as-all-hell, destroyer of relationships. And my job was to help people save their marriages.
The only thing the two of us had in common was the space we were sharing.
And an attraction that was getting harder to deny by the day.
Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author. With more than a million books sold, her titles have appeared in over fifty Bestseller lists and are currently translated in twelve languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.
I could write an awesome synopsis of All They Wanted. Tell you how you’re going to get more of Gunner and Ellie, Josh and Heather, and the oh-so-sexy Jeff and his outspoken bride, Ari, as they head out on a couples camping trip.
Never mind that both Ari and Heather are pregnant and moody. Or that Gunner forgot to bring the food … I mean really, Gunner? I could even tell you how Josh takes a tumble down a hill and—
Now you didn’t really think I was going to tell you what happens … did you?
Elliott is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling contemporary romance author. Since finishing her bestselling Wanted series, Kelly continues to spread her wings while remaining true to her roots and giving readers stories rich with hot protective men, strong women and beautiful surroundings.
Her bestselling works include, Wanted, Broken, Without You, and Unconditional Love, to name just a few.
Kelly has been passionate about writing since she was fifteen. After years of filling journals with stories, she finally followed her dream and published her first novel, Wanted, in November of 2012.
Kelly lives in central Texas with her husband, daughter, and two pups. When she’s not writing, Kelly enjoys reading and spending time with her family. She is down to earth and very in touch with her readers, both on social media and at signings.
To find out more about Kelly and her books, you can find her through her website.
The sizzling second novel in a sexy new contemporary romance series featuring the Lawless siblings—from New York Times bestselling author Lexi Blake.
Brandon Lawless is a man on a mission: obtain the information that will clear his father’s name. He’s willing to do whatever it takes—even seduce his enemy’s personal assistant, the beautiful and innocent Carly Hendricks. But with her beguiling smile and captivating intelligence, Brandon soon realizes he doesn’t want to deceive Carly, he wants to win her over—both in the boardroom and the bedroom.
Then a twisted crime leaves Carly vulnerable and Brandon finds himself reeling. The stakes of his mission are now life or death—Carly’s life. And Brandon realizes he’s lost his heart to an amazing woman and his plan must succeed, because the stakes are no longer just revenge, but a once in a lifetime love.
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“Are you absolutely sure you want to stay here?” Carly frowned as she brought out a blanket twenty minutes later. “The couch is pretty small. I’m not sure you’ll be comfortable on it.”
Bran was one hundred percent sure he wouldn’t be, but that wasn’t the point. He tugged his shirt over his head and folded it neatly. “I’ve slept in worse places. And I think it’s best I stay here tonight. Unless you want to come home with me.”
He knew she wasn’t going to take that option, but it would be nice. If Drew and Riley and Hatch met her, got to know her, they wouldn’t be so worried about her. All he’d had to do was spend a couple of hours with her to know that she was a deeply loyal woman. All he needed to do was prove he was worthy of that loyalty. She’d been bitten before and she was shy, but the man who gained her trust again would get everything from her.
She deserved to have someone who would watch her back, and that included ensuring that she could sleep the rest of the night. What little of it was left.
If someone showed up on her doorstep, he would take care of them. As viciously as he possibly could. He still intended to write her that check. He would do it because it would bring her peace of mind, but he was going to make sure none of them ever threatened her again. He would handle them in a way that would ensure her safety.
She shook her head. “You said your place is out in Palm Coast. That’s forty minutes away. I have to be at work pretty early in the morning.” She turned and started working on the couch, but not before he’d caught her staring at his chest. She smoothed out a sheet over the leather. “Why all the way out there? Why wouldn’t you set up here in St. Augustine?”
He would have to thank his brother-in-law for all the workouts. It was how they’d bonded. Case Taggart liked to lift weights and he’d brought Bran into his daily routine the last time he was in town. It wasn’t like Bran had been out of shape before, but Case’s daily regime had taken his lanky frame and honed it to something strong and masculine. He wished he could tell her how soft and sexy she looked in her pj’s. She had a robe wrapped around her, but every now and then it slipped open, revealing creamy skin and breasts he would love to get his hands on. He’d spent the majority of his evening watching women strip, but it was Carly in her pink tank top and perfectly respectable pajama bottoms that had his cock engaged. “We have some friends who have a condo out there and it’s outfitted with the best tech possible both computer-wise and security. Also, we thought it would be best if we were close but not too close. Patricia knew our parents quite well. One new person in her life who reminds her of old enemies won’t cause too much stress but if she were to see me and Drew, or worse, Hatch, she would definitely be suspicious. We’re simply being careful.”
“You have your mother’s coloring, but you don’t really look like her. You look more like your dad,” Carly said as she worked a pillow into a soft-looking pillowcase.
“I’m taller than he was, a bit more built. I looked more like him when I was smaller. Take off about thirty pounds of muscle, cut my hair into a military buzz, and put some glasses on me, and I look quite like him. Of course I’ve been told my father had an air of unmistakable genius about him that I don’t have.” Not that Hatch had put it that way. He’d explained that most people didn’t remember Benedict for his looks. They remembered his brilliant brain. “Drew is most like him. Another reason I thought it was better for me to go in instead of him. I think Drew would remind Patricia of our father.”
“I don’t know about that. She’s not very observant. One of the things you need to know about her is that she’s a narcissist. She doesn’t care about anything but herself and her bottom line.” She looked up at him. “Your brother is the man behind 4L?”
Naturally everyone was impressed with a thirty-four-year-old billionaire. “He is. I need you to understand that we have resources that we’ll use to take care of you. You’ll have a job at 4L if you want one. I’ll promise you that right now.”
“You need a personal assistant?” she said, her lips curling slightly.
He frowned because he hadn’t thought she’d ask that question. “No. I don’t really need one, but I promise I’ll find something for you. You won’t be left out in the cold. 4L is a big company and we own a lot of other companies. You would have your pick.”
Actually, Ellie could use a new PA. That wouldn’t be a bad fit. Ellie would be good to Carly and Bran spent a lot of time in New York. He could see her from time to time. He would have to think about it. He didn’t mention it, though, because Ellie’s last assistant had been brutally murdered in front of her. It wouldn’t give Carly great faith in them as a group.
She settled the pillow down and smoothed out the blanket. “I don’t know how I feel about a new job. Not that I’m not happy at the thought of keeping my house, but being a personal assistant wasn’t exactly my life plan. I wanted to write cookbooks. Well, I wanted to start out by editing them and work my way up.”
“It sounds like you want to be a chef.”
Her head shook slightly. “No. It’s different. I don’t want my own restaurant or to be in charge of a kitchen. I want to work at a lifestyle magazine. I love looking at decorating trends and cooking trends. A chef tends to focus on one type of cuisine. I want to try them all, not necessarily be a master at them. I like making people comfortable. At my heart, I’m a homemaker.”
Her home was lovely. The minute he’d walked in he’d felt a certain peace rush over him and not simply because the space was well decorated. Carly herself made a person feel at home.
Even when she was crying on his shoulder. She would probably run as fast as she could if she knew how much that had fed his soul. It wasn’t that he liked watching her cry. He’d enjoyed knowing he was helping her. He’d loved the way she’d clung to him, her arms tight around his body.
He probably shouldn’t tell her that, either.
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog int eh world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.