Thursday, March 2, 2017

Mister Wrong by Nicole Williams


















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Cora Matthews grew up with the Adams boys, twin brothers and best friends who wouldn’t let anything come between them except for one thing—her. One of them became her best friend, the other, her fiancé.

She always knew she’d wind up marrying one of them, and Jacob Adams is the very epitome of Mister Right. At least he is up until he fails to show up for their wedding day. Not that Cora realizes it. At first.

As Jacob’s best man, and identical twin, Matt makes a split second decision, but one that will affect the three of their lives forever—he steps in to take his brother’s place. In front of the altar, exchanging vows with the woman he’s secretly been in love with for years.

Cora eventually finds out about the groom swap. The morning after the wedding. As if realizing she just slept with her fiance’s brother wasn’t disturbing enough, she’s forced to confront her feelings for Matt Adams she thought she’d buried years ago.

Matt’s wrong for her. In every way. But through the course of her real honeymoon with her fake husband, she starts to uncover truths both Adams brothers were hoping to keep hidden, for opposite reasons. One to protect himself, the other to protect her.

She married the wrong brother, but what if he’s been the right one all along?
















“So?” I crossed my arms and leaned into the banister behind me. “Did you? Like my brother?”
She sighed, turning toward the open door. “Jacob . . .”
“What? It’s a fair question.” I shoved off the banister, feeling hope and heat tangling in my veins from the look on her face, from the sound of her voice. She’d felt something for me, whether it be the most passing of crushes or something much deeper. Realizing that had me feeling drunk from something other than alcohol. “Besides, you’re stuck with me now. Won’t matter what you ’fess up to.”
Cora started through the doorway. “I don’t want to talk about it.”
Grabbing the suitcases, I followed her. I wasn’t letting this go. Never. Not if she threatened death or castration or anything else. “Why not?”
She broke to a sudden stop a few feet inside the room. “Because I don’t want to focus on the past. I want to concentrate on the future. That’s not going to work if you keep asking me questions about Matt.”
There was a sharpness in her voice—one she didn’t use too often. She didn’t want to keep talking about me, which only made me want to continue talking about me. I’d struck a nerve, but I wasn’t sure how deep that nerve went.
I needed to know how deep it went. I had to know. My whole life, I’d been under the impression that Cora saw me as nothing more than a good friend and substitute brother. She cared for me, but not in the same way I cared for her.
Or did she?
“This thing with Matt . . .”
Her back stiffened.
“Was it a thing? Like ancient history? Or is it still a thing?” I closed the door and wondered why I could feel my heartbeat in my eardrums.
She kept her back to me, standing in the middle of the dark room like a lone ship on a vast ocean. “I married you.”
Yeah, she did marry me.
“But if he’d made a play for you, way back before all of this”—I waved my finger between the two of us, not that she could see it—“would you have given him a chance?”
“He never made a play for me.” Her voice sounded faraway, like she was out of reach when she was less than an arm’s length away.
“That doesn’t answer my question.” I stepped closer. “If he had? Would you have?”
Her back was moving faster from her quickened breathing. This conversation was making her uncomfortable. Why was that?
“Stop, Jacob. Enough.” She spun on me, swaying in place just enough that I reached out to steady her. She shook my hand away like it was white-hot. “I’m not going to get into another fight with you over Matt. I’m done. I picked you. I married you. What else do I have to prove?”
“That you don’t—”
“I don’t love Matt!” Her arms flung out at her sides as her voice spilled across the room. ‘There. I said it. Are you happy now? Are you happy we’ve managed to get into another argument over this infatuation you’re convinced I have for your brother? On our wedding night of all times?” She glared at me with bleary eyes. I couldn’t tell if that was from tears or from alcohol. Maybe both.
“Cora, I’m sorry.” I ran my hands through my hair, wondering what in the hell I was doing—for the millionth time that day. Deceiving her, betraying her, and now accusing and angering her. Maybe I didn’t know the first fucking thing about love. Maybe Jacob knew more about it than I did, because I wasn’t sure love was supposed to hurt as badly as this did.
“Just . . . enough already.” As she shouldered past me, I reached for her, but she shook me off. “I need to be alone.”
She slammed the front door behind her a moment later, leaving me alone with my idiocy.
“Cora,” I called to an empty room. I wasn’t thinking when I rushed toward the door after her. “Cora!”
The moment I pulled the door open, something crashed into me. It made a sharp breath rush out of my mouth as I staggered back a few steps.
My arms barely had time to wrap around her before Cora’s mouth was on mine, moving in such a way that made staying upright next to impossible. Before I had a chance to catch up to the fact that I was kissing Cora in an entirely different way than we’d kissed at the wedding and reception, her fingers were working at my belt. Quickly.
I didn’t know she’d already gotten it undone before she’d moved on to my zipper. The sounds she was making as she kissed me, the way her body felt aligned against mine, the way her mouth knew the intricate balance of submission and domination . . . one moment at a time, Cora was crushing the last remnants of my resolve. Destroying the final pieces of my views of right and wrong.
































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Nicole Williams is the New York Times and USATODAY bestselling author of contemporary and young adult romance, including the Crash and Lost & Found series. Her books have been published by HarperTeen and Simon & Schuster in both domestic and foreign markets, while she continues to self-publish additional titles. She is working on a new YA series with Crown Books (a division of Random House) as well. She loves romance, from the sweet to the steamy, and writes stories about characters in search of their happily even after. She grew up surrounded by books and plans on writing until the day she dies, even if it’s just for her own personal enjoyment. She still buys paperbacks because she’s all nostalgic like that, but her kindle never goes neglected for too long. When not writing, she spends her time with her husband and daughter, and whatever time’s left over she’s forced to fit too many hobbies into too little time.
Nicole is represented by Jane Dystel, of Dystel and Goderich Literary Agency.






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Building Celebration House by Annette Drake


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Book Title: Building Celebration house (Book 1 of The Celebration House Trilogy) 
Author: Annette Drake 
Genre: Women's Fiction 
Release Date: March 1, 2017 
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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Carrie Hansen spent her life caring for cardiac patients. Little did she know she would become a patient herself. After recovering from her own heart surgery, she learns she has a new skill: the ability to see and talk with the dead.

Now, with her health failing, she leaves the bustle of Seattle behind and returns to Lexington, Missouri, the small town where she spent her childhood. Here, she sets out to restore an abandoned antebellum mansion and open it as a venue for celebrations.

Carrie’s unique gift allows her to build relationships with the mansion’s ghostly occupants, especially Major Tom Gentry, the handsome Civil War soldier who died 100 years before Carrie was born. He encourages and comforts her, though not in the physical way they both desire.

Will Carrie finish restoring the celebration house or will it finish her? And how can she plan a future with a man who has only a past?
excerpt



Prologue

Carrie Hansen checked her watch a third time. She yawned and rubbed her eyes. How much longer was this office visit going to take? After working a twelve-hour night shift, she’d come straight here from the hospital. She wanted to go home.


Glancing around the small exam room, Carrie wondered what the name of the shade of beige paint was that covered the walls. Sit and Wait Off-white, she thought, or maybe, Calm-down Cream. She refused to sit on the exam table with its crinkly paper. She’d sat on enough crinkly paper, so she occupied one of the two office chairs in the corner and stared at a poster that listed the symptoms of congestive heart failure. Fatigue? Check. Shortness of breath? You betcha. Swollen legs and ankles? Yep again. Damn. She had almost all of those symptoms.

When Dr. Henry Lionel, her cardiologist, entered the small exam room, his nurse, Beth Kozera, came with him. Carrie knew both providers well. Beth sat in the chair next to her. Dr. Lionel pulled up the rolling stool he usually perched on during their frequent visits.

Carrie’s pulse quickened; they never both came in during an office visit.

Dr. Lionel took off his eyeglasses and cleaned them with his tie, stalling.

Carrie blurted, “It’s bad, isn’t it?”

Neither nurse nor doctor said anything for a minute. Dr. Lionel put his eyeglasses back on and sighed. “It is, Carrie. I can show you the images from the echocardiogram, but here’s what matters: your ejection fraction has dropped again. Now, we estimate it’s about twenty percent. It was sixty after the transplant. The symptoms you report – fatigue, shortness of breath, difficulty lying flat – all point to one answer. Your new heart is failing.”

Carrie nodded. “I was afraid of that. What do we do now?”

“We contact the transplant team and work you up for another heart. At your age, you’re a strong candidate.”

“What’s Plan B?” Carrie interrupted.

“There isn’t one. We can adjust your medications, but it’s another transplant or…”

Carrie finished his sentence. “Or I die.”

Silence filled the small room.

“How long?” she asked.

He looked at her over his glasses and smiled. “C’mon, Carrie. You and I both have been asked that question time and time again by patients’ families. We both know there’s no answer. This is overwhelming news. Take some time. Talk to your parents.”

Carrie grimaced. “I lost my dad last year, just before I got sick. Now this. I’m not sure how much more news my mom and sister can take.”

“You need time to process this,” Beth said.

Carrie squeezed Beth’s hand. “Thank you. You’ve always been so kind to me. But maybe time is the one thing I don’t have.”

“We’ll start the process of getting you back on the transplant list today. I’ll call the surgeon myself,” Dr. Lionel said.

Carrie shook her head. “No. No. I won’t go through that again. I can’t. I’ve had enough of hospitals and doctors and surgery to last me – well, the rest of my life. No more.”

After she left the doctor’s office, Carrie returned to her small apartment. She shed her clothes and crawled into bed. Six hours later, when she awoke, she brewed a cup of tea and turned on her computer to comb through all the websites she’d already visited, looking for a kernel of good news. National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association, CardioSmart, and WomenHeart. Nothing.

She opened one of her favorite pages, IHeartOldHouses.com. She loved looking at the historic properties for sale. She clicked on the listing for Missouri and saw a new advertisement. Four bedroom, one bath, Greek Revival. A “project” home.

Carrie chuckled and clicked on the property. She scrolled through the photos that showed a home clearly in disrepair. When she saw the façade of the house, she gasped.

“Oh my God! I know this house.”

Carrie mapped it. Yep. It was on the same road where her grandmother’s home had been. That house was gone now, lost to land developers who had bulldozed it and turned the rolling farmland into another subdivision. But this house… this house needed saving. And so did she.

meet the author

Annette Drake is a multi-genre author whose work is character-driven and celebrates the law of unintended consequences. She makes her home in Washington state. A member of the Romance Writers of America, Annette loves ferry rides, basset hounds and bakeries. She does not camp.
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Tapped and Giveaway by Liz Crowe


Tapped
The Brewing Passion Series #1
By Liz Crowe
Genre: NA Romance

When wealthy brewery owner Austin Fitzgerald meets sexy saleswoman Evelyn Benedict, angry sparks fly. They seem destined to clash, until a hot hookup in a cold beer cooler changes everything.
For Austin, it's a life-altering moment that sets him on a path away from his birthright, while Evelyn must face her fears about committing to a man considered the playboy of the micro-brewing world.
The power of preconceived notions nearly tears them apart—until they meet up with brew master Ross, who opens their eyes to a deeper, even more erotic connection.
But three strong personalities don’t always make for the best emotional mix and when a simple misunderstanding causes chaos, it’s up to Ross to somehow repair the tattered shreds of their relationship.

Amazon best-selling author, mom of three, Realtor, beer blogger, brewery marketing expert, and soccer fan, Liz Crowe is a Kentucky native and graduate of the University of Louisville currently living in Ann Arbor. She has decades of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as a three-continent, ex-pat trailing spouse.
Her early forays into the publishing world led to a groundbreaking fiction subgenre, “Romance: Worth the Risk,” which has gained thousands of fans and followers interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”).
With stories set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, in successful real estate offices and at times in exotic locales like Istanbul, Turkey, her books are unique and told with a fresh voice. The Liz Crowe backlist has something for any reader seeking complex storylines with humor and complete casts of characters that will delight, frustrate and linger in the imagination long after the book is finished.
Don’t ever ask her for anything “like a Budweiser” or risk bodily injury.