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Category Archives: Contemporary Romance

Blog Tour: The Son & His Hope by Pepper Winters

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The Son and His Hope by Pepper Winters

Release Date: February 12th

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The Son and His Hope, a sweeping standalone from New York Times Bestselling author Pepper Winters.

“Things you should know about me from the very beginning:

I was born to true love, witnessed the destruction it causes, and vowed never to let such agony happen to me. I am not a story-teller like my father. I am not a writer like my mother. I am just a son—their son.

I am happy being alone.

And that is all I ever want to be.”

JACOB

The day he was born, Jacob learned his hardest and longest lesson.

It wasn’t a lesson a boy should learn so young, but from his earliest memories he knew where happiness lives, so does tragedy. Where love exists, so does heartbreak. And where hope resides, so does sorrow.

That lesson carved him from the kid to the teen to the man.

And nothing and no one could change his mind.

HOPE

I first met him when he was fourteen at a movie premiere of all places. A movie based on his parent’s life.

He was stoic, strong, suspicious, and secretive.

I was only ten, but I felt something for him. A strange kind of sorrow that made me want to hug and heal him.

I was the daughter of the actor hired to play his father.

We shared similarities.

I recognised parts of him because they were parts of me.

But no matter how many times we met. No matter how many times I tried.

He stayed true to his vow to never fall.

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Download your copy today!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2HUEKLf

Amazon Worldwide: mybook.to/SonHopePW

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Nook: http://bit.ly/2GAdbEP

Kobo: https://goo.gl/yUJUqc

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EXCERPT

It’d been a long time since I’d seen her, and this new woman in front of me didn’t compute with the waifish girl I’d done my best to scare off.

“I couldn’t sleep.” She blinked with eyes too hooded to be innocent. She spoke with a voice too rich and feminine to belong to the annoying Hope Jacinta Murphy.

My hands curled, fighting away sick appreciation. For years, I hadn’t bothered mingling with anyone other than family. Back when I’d attended school, the girls showed off their newly formed bodies and flaunted their sexual preference. Their obvious flirting turned me off rather than on. They all seemed so desperate to impress, so eager for a connection that would end up destroying them.

Hope, meanwhile, was none of those things.

She was shy beneath strength. Quiet beneath conversation. And when she’d hugged me?

God, she’d shown me pain had multiple levels.

A hug from family could sear and sting.

But a hug from her?

It drew blood.

“It isn’t safe to wander around this late on your own.” My hands balled, my voice thickened, and I did my best to keep my eyes on her face because there was no way I could look at her body. No way I could permit myself to see the change in her, the growth, the knowledge that she might drive me to rage and disturb my carefully perfected world, but she was the most beautiful creature I’d ever seen.

Soft but sharp. Trusting but careful. Fragile but brave.

All the things that drew out the best and worst in me. I wanted to be kind, so she was happy. I wanted to be cruel, so she’d leave.

I didn’t have the strength to fight both instincts or convince myself I was content with being alone. My phobia of getting close to anyone ordered me to back up and point at Mom’s house. “Go back, Hope.”

She bit her lower lip, looking at where I pointed before capturing my stare again.

I didn’t stand a chance with the way she studied me. The same way she’d watched me as a child with a certainty and calmness that made me fidget and bristle. Only now, a deeper element was there too. A terrifying welcome. A petrifying invitation that had nothing to do with the years we’d danced around each other and everything to do with this new torturous existence.

“I don’t want to go back yet.” Her voice whispered through the grass, sounding part breeze, part shadow.

“What do you want?” My jaw clenched.

What the hell sort of question is that, and why did I ask it?

She cocked her head, hair tumbling, eyes searching. “To walk.” Taking a hesitant step toward me, she smiled softly. “Want to walk with me?”

“What I want is for you to get off my property.”

Her smile warmed instead of cooled. “Can I walk on it first? Then I’ll get off it.”

I couldn’t understand her. Was she joking with me? Teasing? Being plain exasperating? Crossing my arms, I raised my chin. “Walking it would take hours. It’s big.”

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About Pepper:

Pepper Winters is a multiple New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today International Bestseller.

After chasing her dreams to become a full-time writer, Pepper has earned recognition with awards for best Dark Romance, best BDSM Series, and best Hero. She’s an multiple #1 iBooks bestseller, along with #1 in Erotic Romance, Romantic Suspense, Contemporary, and Erotica Thriller. With 19 books currently published, she has hit the bestseller charts twenty-six times in three years.

Pepper is a Hybrid Author of both Traditional and Self-published work. Her Pure Corruption Series was released by Grand Central, Hachette.

Her books have garnered foreign interest and are currently being translated into numerous languages, including already released titles in Italian and Turkish. Audio Books for her entire back-list will be available in 2017.

Connect with Pepper:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pepperwintersbooks/
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2lLHxdG
Twitter: @PepperWinters
Facebook Fan Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1511645192400372/
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Throwback Thursday: Always You by Stephanie Rose

“Superheroes need a girl they can save, so she can save them right back.”

“No!” Lucas yelled as a tear ran down his cheek. “You’re mine, Samantha–and I’m yours. You, me, Bella. We’re a family. My family. This is not what you think it is. I would never hurt you like that. I love you so much. Always you. You’re my life, my everything, my fucking world. I’ll never let you go. I can’t. I won’t.”

“I love you because of the way you look at me–like I’m a superhero who can do anything. I love you because I can’t picture my life without you”

To Samantha Christensen, Lucas Hunter was always the guy—the sexy, smart and unattainable man she pined for throughout college. To Lucas, she was a treasured friend, a younger sister he felt the need to protect. She had a choice—to wait and hope, or to settle.

When they meet again years later, Lucas looks at Samantha and sees a woman he wants—even though she’s not free to take. As they renew their friendship he finds he’s falling hard, and can’t accept any less than all of her.

Samantha realizes there’s hope with Lucas. Will she finally have a chance to be happy with the man she’s always loved, or will obligations and insecurities stand in their way? 

Can Samantha and Lucas convince each other that they belong together? That it was Always You?

Always You is the first novel in the Second Chances series. Each novel will be an interconnected standalone about second chances at love. Due to sexual situations, its recommended for readers 18 and up. 

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You can check out my review at: https://bit.ly/2ScQUDT

Cover Reveal: Best I’ve Ever Had by Abbi Glines

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ABBI BOOK INFORMATION

Title: Best I’ve Ever Had

Series: Standalone in the Sea Breeze meets Rosemary Beach

Author: Abbi Glines

Genre: New Adult Romance

Release Date: March 22, 2019

Cover Designer: Ellie McLove

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ABBI SYNOPSIS

Summer had returned to the coastal town of Sea Breeze, Alabama. The nightlife lit up with scantily clad sun-kissed bodies, live music, the smell of freshly cooked seafood.
Taking it all in he wondered if coming back had been the best thing. He wasn’t the same man who had driven out of town a year ago on the motorcycle he’d spontaneously bought after his best friend’s wedding. From the messy blond curls he’d let grow out to the tattoos now covering his arms, part of his chest and even the side of his neck, it all represented a part of his journey.


Eli Hardy was back, but he didn’t plan on staying for long.

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ABOUT ABBI4872191Abbi Glines is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, Field Party and Existence series. She never cooks unless baking during the Christmas holiday counts. She believes in ghosts and has a habit of asking people if their house is haunted before she goes in it. She drinks afternoon tea because she wants to be British but alas she was born in Alabama. When asked how many books she has written she has to stop and count on her fingers. When she’s not locked away writing, she is reading, shopping (major shoe and purse addiction), sneaking off to the movies alone, and listening to the drama in her teenagers lives while making mental notes on the good stuff to use later. Don’t judge.

You can connect with Abbi online in several different ways. She uses social media to procrastinate.

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Cover Reveal: The Feel Good Factor by Lauren Blakely

That inked bad boy who’s been striking sparks with me since he rode into town? Turns out he’s my new housemate, which adds up to a super-complicated living situation and chemistry so hot it should be illegal.

THE FEEL GOOD FACTOR, a sexy new standalone romance from #1 New York Times bestselling author Lauren Blakely, will be releasing on March 25, 2019 on all retailers! A roommates-to-lovers romantic comedy, don’t miss the stunning cover below, and pre-order your copy today!

Photography by Wong Sim.
Model is Sahib Faber.
Cover Design by Helen Williams.

About THE FEEL GOOD FACTOR (Coming 3/25/2019):

I have a fantastic family, great best friends, a job I love…and now I’m up for a promotion to police sergeant. I need total focus—not a flirty, dirty, irresistible, tattooed hottie riding into my town on his motorcycle. Can I arrest him for being too good-looking? When he kisses me senseless in the back of a waffle truck, it’s criminal, the things he makes me think about hot syrup and melted butter. One order of hot, fluffy hookup to go, please.

But the next time I see him, it’s not for our date with benefits. He’s the guy who just rented the room above my garage.

I need the rent to pay my bills, not a man like Derek, who I soon discover to be strong, caring, generous, good with kids, and kind to puppies… If I’m not careful, he’ll be moving into my heart as well as my house.

***

A no-strings-attached fling with the fiery redhead who revs my engine? Why, yes, that does sound like a delicious perk of my new job in this new town, thank you very much. I’m coming off a bad relationship, and I have zero interest in anything serious. I’ve got all the serious I need helping my sister take care of her three little kids while her husband is deployed.

Except, surprise! Perri isn’t just my future fling. Turns out she’s my sexy, sassy landlord.

A lease definitely counts as “strings attached,” and as much as I’d like to get tangled in her sheets, I can’t let myself get tangled up in a relationship.

But as soon as we put the cuffs on our escapades, I learn over late-night conversations in the kitchen, that my landlord is so much more than the sexiest woman I’ve ever met– she has a quick mind and the biggest heart.

Once I’m in, I’m all in. And to convince her that we should see where this goes, I plan on turning up the heat—and not just in the kitchen.

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY!

✦Amazon PB ➜ http://blkly.pub/AmazonFG

✦Apple Books ➜ http://blkly.pub/AppleFeelgood

✦Kobo ➜ http://blkly.pub/KoboFeelGood

✦Nook ➜ http://blkly.pub/NookFeelGood

✦Google Play ➜ http://blkly.pub/GoogleFeelGood

✦Kindle LIVE alert (via Lauren’s newsletter) ➜ https://laurenblakely.com/newsletter

✦Goodreads ➜ http://blkly.pub/GoodreadsFeelGood


Love Audio Books? Get ready for one amazing listen with two Audie-nominated romance narrators!

Joe Arden and Erin Mallon team up to bring you Lauren’s latest standalone rom-com The Feel Good Factor!

And that’s not all! This audiobook also includes the bonus short story, STRONG SUIT!

Get the latest audio news from Lauren Blakely here: http://www.subscribepage.com/LaurenAudio

About Lauren Blakely:

A #1 New York Times Bestselling and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that’s sweet, sexy and witty. Her heroines are strong and smart and her heroes have hearts of gold and fantastic funny bones. She lives in California with her family, including her smoking hot and hilarious husband and her two brilliant and kind children. She has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs — she might have four dogs, or maybe five. If she’s lucky, she’ll soon have six dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than 100 times, and she’s sold more than 3 million books. In February she’ll release BEST LAID PLANS, in March THE FEEL GOOD FACTOR, and in May THE DATING PROPOSAL. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter

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Chapter Reveal: Jagged Ink by Carrie Ann Ryan

Carrie Ann Ryan’s Montgomery Ink: Colorado Springs series continues with JAGGED INK, coming February 19, 2019! Read the first chapter below.

About JAGGED INK

Available February 19th, 2019

The Montgomery Ink: Colorado Springs series continues with a couple fighting to keep what they thought they had and gain what they didn’t know they needed.

Roxie Montgomery met her soul mate when she least expected it. When he asked her to marry her, she thought her happily ever after was only just beginning. Then, she found that walking into the sunset was much harder than her favorite books made it out to be. After a crushing loss, she feels as though she doesn’t know her husband anymore, or rather…she doesn’t know herself.

Carter Marshall has loved Roxie since the first time he saw her. But as the days pass between them, so does the distance. He doesn’t know how to show her that he’s all in, and honestly doesn’t know if she’s in at all. When an accident changes everything, they’ll have to decide if what they have can be salvaged, or if starting over is the answer. Or even possible.

Without fighting, without a true new beginning, sometimes, the remnants of what was lost can leave anyone jagged, shells of what they were before. It will take more than the idea of forever for Roxie and Carter to find themselves again, but as the Montgomerys know, nothing worth fighting for is easy.

JAGGED INK releases February 19th, 2019 – preorder your copy now!

✦Amazon http://amzn.to/2CzXbNq
✦iBooks https://apple.co/2BGLEz1
✦Kobo http://bit.ly/2oeaw96
✦B&N http://bit.ly/2qPQ6oa
✦Google Play http://bit.ly/2ujueDo
✦Amazon Paperback https://amzn.to/2IARozd
Add it to your Goodreads Shelves –> http://bit.ly/2EQadLQ

Chapter One of JAGGED INK

Fire burned, bright and hot.

Those were the first things that had come to Carter Marshall’s mind when the explosion hit.

He hadn’t thought of what might happen, not even for a moment, when he threw himself on top of Thea’s body, trying to take the brunt of the heat.

But the heat.

It was so fucking hot.

Carter snorted to himself, thinking about that. Of course, fire was hot. Of course, it burned. Of course, it singed. Thankfully, he hadn’t been able to scent his own skin burning. But he had been able to smell burnt flour and other baked goods as the industrial bakery oven exploded in front of them.

He’d heard screams, mostly coming from Thea, and maybe from himself. He’d heard people rushing towards them. He’d heard other people crying out.

He had heard it all, but he hadn’t really felt much.

Maybe he wasn’t supposed to feel anything. Maybe, in that moment, it had been how it was supposed to be.

At least that’s what he’d thought when he attempted not to feel, when he tried to make sure Thea was okay and ensure he could maybe walk out of the inferno.

And then he’d woken up, and he hadn’t been dead.

And he hadn’t been alone.

Roxie had been there.

The Montgomerys had been there.

He hadn’t been alone.

And for someone who’d thought he always would be, that was a comfort. At least…it had been.

Someone had tried to destroy part of his sister-in-law’s bakery, Colorado Icing. And in doing so, that person had almost killed the love of his life’s sister. Had nearly killed Thea. And had almost killed him.

Now, he sat in a hospital bed, wondering what the fuck to do, because the explosion was only the beginning.

The heat, the flames, yes, they burned brightly and quickly.

But the dull ache running down his side and in his heart…that was what would last. That he would have to deal with.

“Are you okay over there?” Mace asked, his brows drawn. Carter turned to look at the other man with his dark hair and inked skin peeking out from under his shirt sleeves. Mace had been there for over an hour, just waiting. Waiting like all of them were doing.

Carter almost shrugged to say that he was okay, then stopped himself just in time. He had pretty severe burns down his side and leg, even some on his neck. And, because of that, shrugging would likely hurt like hell.

He would be okay. The doctors had told him that over and over again. He didn’t even have to worry about infection as much as he might have if he had been in the fire even a second longer. But because the flames had gone overhead, and he had flattened himself as much as possible over Thea’s body, he was going to be okay. Well, as okay as he could be with severe burns down his side, though, thankfully not life-threatening ones. And he had full mobility, or he would. I will be okay, he repeated to himself.

Theoretically.

Finally, he answered Mace. “I’m fine. Just tired.” He didn’t ask the question he wanted to. Didn’t ask the question that he should have the minute he woke up and saw Mace by his side.

It was the second day after the explosion, and when he was asleep through his surgery, things had gone to hell and back with his family. Thea had discharged herself from the hospital, thankfully, not as hurt as he was. Then, she’d gone off to see what had happened to her boyfriend as he had left her side and hadn’t come back. Apparently, Dimitri had gotten hurt in another accident and was even now in the same hospital as Carter.

The Montgomerys sure liked coming to medical centers.

Carter should know that, he had married a Montgomery after all, and he had spent more time in hospitals with Roxie than he cared to admit. He swallowed down bile from the pain, tried to push the thoughts from his head. He had to do that often when it came to Roxie. Not think. Not dwell.

It was better for both of them. He just focused on the now, and not the past…and sure as hell not the future.

Mace leaned forward in his chair, his expression concerned. “You want me to get you something?”

Carter shook his head, at least as much as he was able. “I’m fine. Just bored.” True. Somewhat.

Mace snorted. “Well, I’m not going to lie, I’m glad you’re bored. Because you’re here and able to be bored.”

“I guess that’s true. If I have time to be bored, I guess I have time to heal. I’d just rather be home while I do it.”

But as soon as Carter said the words, he wasn’t sure that was true. Home was awkward, it wasn’t easy. Home was full of memories, the depth of them piled on top of one another like coats of paint that had never been chipped away.

Taking away his breath.

He was suffocating, trying to figure out what to say, trying not to step on toes—even his own. He hated it, but he didn’t know how to stop it. Didn’t know how to make things better.

He didn’t know if there was a better.

It would be easier if he didn’t love Roxie. Things were always easier if love wasn’t in the equation.

“Carter?”

He pulled himself from his thoughts again. He needed to. “What?”

Mace’s voice was low and far too careful. “Her mom sent her home. Said she needed to take a shower and get some sleep. She’s been in the waiting room or by your side since she ran into the ER after we all found out about the accident. You know she’d be here if she could. But the folks pretty much dragged her out of the room to get herself together, and that’s why I’m here.”

Carter couldn’t think about that right then. He didn’t want her to see him like this. He already felt like only part of a man most days he saw her. This way? Weak, and not himself? He didn’t want to do that to her.

“Where’s Daisy?”

The she they had been talking about was Roxie, of course, but they could come back to that. The fact that Carter’s brother-in-law—or his soon-to-be brother-in-law if Mace and Adrienne had anything to say about it—was there, was nice. But the man had a daughter at home. He was the sole provider for the child ever since Daisy’s mom ran out on her. Between Adrienne and Mace, and the rest of the Montgomerys, there was always child care, but Carter didn’t like pulling Mace away from his kid.

“She’s with my sisters. They drove down from Denver,” Mace replied. Carter nodded, thankful that Mace’s two sisters had come to help out. He knew they didn’t see their niece very much and were trying to make the hour and a half trip more often, but still, he didn’t really like the fact that everyone had to change their plans because of him.

He decided to change the subject. “So, they caught the person that did it? The sabotage.”

Mace nodded. “Yeah, there was the one person who actually did it, but the person that orchestrated it…Molly? She is going to either be behind bars or getting the help she needs. She attacked Dimitri, too, in their old home. So something was definitely off there. But it makes me so fucking angry that it even got to this point. She could have hurt a lot more people. She did hurt a lot of people.”

“I’m just glad Thea wasn’t alone back there, you know?” Carter said, picking at some of the fuzz on his hospital blanket.

“I don’t think any of us want to think about it. Adrienne’s ready to bust some kneecaps I think, she’s so damn angry.”

“Well, your girl stood up for herself when she needed to, and she wants to stand up for others whenever she can. She could pretty much kick my ass if she wanted to.”

“I think she could kick all our asses, especially with you down for the count right now. But you’re going to be okay, you’re going to be right back to fighting shape and ready to kick all of our asses soon. Especially considering that out of the four of us—Dimitri, me, Shep and you—you’re pretty much the most built.”

“Well, with my job, I have to be.”

“That’s the truth, with two tattoo artists and a teacher, the mechanic who has to lift things other than a pencil or pen all day is probably going to be the one with the most muscle.”

“It’s going to be okay, Carter, make sure you tell your wife that,” Mace said, his voice low.

Carter didn’t say anything then, knowing that Mace was fishing. They all were. Everyone wanted to know what was going on between Roxie and Carter. And he hated the fact that he didn’t have answers for them. He saw the looks, heard the whispers. He wasn’t the dumb mechanic that others often thought of him as.

The Montgomerys may love him, may have taken him into their family when he didn’t have anyone else, but he still wasn’t one of them. Not really. He was the guy who had gone to mechanic school and took a couple of business classes to open up his shop. He was the guy that had fallen in love with someone he never thought would actually love him back.

And he was the guy who had gotten married because he thought he was making the right decision, who had thought he was doing it because everything would be better for it. Because he loved her.

And people wondered about the reasons behind it.

It wasn’t any of their goddamn business.

Carter loved Roxie Montgomery.

He just didn’t know if love was enough anymore.

“I’m going to go get a soda or something. Shep will be in soon to take over. You want anything?”

“I’m fine. I can call the nurses if I need anything, but I think I’m just going to take a nap or something.”

Carter didn’t want to talk to anyone, didn’t really want anyone near him. All he wanted to do was heal and figure out what the fucking next step was. Something he had been thinking about forever it seemed. What was the next step with his business? What was the next step with his life? What was the next step with the woman who wouldn’t talk to him?

“Roxie should be here soon too, you know,” Mace said as he stepped toward the door. “I don’t think her mom is going to keep her away for too long. I’m pretty sure they had to drag her out, and probably scared the nurses and staff in order for her to actually leave. But she’ll be back.”

“Yeah, she will.” Carter didn’t say anything else as Mace left, he could only wonder how long Roxie would stay when she came back.

He hated this. Hated not knowing anything. That was always the problem, the not knowing, the feeling of being two steps behind like he was a fucking idiot. But more and more these days, every time he thought about his wife, he couldn’t help but feel stupid. And that was on his shoulders, that was never on her. But he would have to figure out what to do about this feeling.

But, deep down in his gut, he knew that the accident would only make things harder for everybody.

Carter settled in for a nap and noticed that Shep, Roxie’s brother, walked in, checked on him, and then left again. A couple of other people came in, and he figured they were nurses and doctors. He was just so damned tired. His body exhausted, hurting. His mind hurting. His heart hurting.

He hated feeling like this. He was a man who worked with his hands, someone who knew what the fuck he was doing when it came to what was in front of him. But what surrounded him, what was behind him and lurking? That, he couldn’t stop thinking about. That was what he couldn’t control. And he was afraid everything he couldn’t control would end up slipping through his fingers.

A few hours later, the door opened, and Carter knew she was there before he saw her. Even over the scent of antiseptic and all the ointments on his body, he knew it was her. She tried different perfumes and lotions, but there was always just the smell of Roxie. The one that was uniquely her, sweet and a little floral. Maybe a little spice on certain days. It didn’t matter what she was wearing, how long her day had been, or how long she went without a shower. It was just Roxie.

His Roxie.

Carter resisted rubbing his hand over his heart at the thought. His Roxie wasn’t really a phrase he could use anymore, was it?

She hadn’t been his for a while, no matter what the paperwork said.

Damn, he hated himself.

And he couldn’t help but wonder…if he hated himself for any longer, would he end up hating her, too?

“You’re awake,” Roxie said, her voice soft, hesitant.

She was always so cautious around him.

Where had the woman gone who was such a force? Where did the woman who couldn’t keep her hands off him—just like he couldn’t do with her—go?

“I am.”

He didn’t know what to say after that. How could he not know what to say to the woman he loved with everything he had? What the hell was wrong with them?

Or rather, what the hell was wrong with him?

He just needed to open his mouth and say something. Anything. Tell her how he felt. That he loved her. That he wanted to work this out. That they could figure out whatever this was. But he didn’t know how to do that. Not when she looked so unhappy, so…not Roxie around him.

He didn’t want to force her to love him. Didn’t want to push her to be with him. To speak to him. To tell him her fears when he knew deep down that he was her fear.

He was going to lose everything he’d ever wanted, and he wasn’t sure how to deal with that. It wasn’t like he was dealing with it well at the moment.

Carter looked into her deep blue eyes and willed himself not to beg. It wouldn’t do either of them any good, and with the pain meds he was on, he was afraid he’d say something senseless.

When she came to sit down next to him, he just turned his head and stared at her, wanting to keep her on his mind and in his memories, feeling like the time was too short for them. Seconds and moments were passing in a blink, like sand between the fingers as it fell, and he couldn’t hold on any longer.

She reached out and put her hand on his, and he almost moved his away, startled at not only her movement but also his reaction. He turned his hand over and clasped hers as if knowing it might be forever if he let go.

“The doctors said you would be okay. That you can come home soon.” She wasn’t looking at his face but their joined hands.

He didn’t want to let go.

He never wanted to let go.

He cleared his throat and looked at her face, willing her to look at him. “That’s what I hear. Maybe another night or two while they get me ready for PT and are sure that I don’t catch an infection, and then I can come home.”

She gave him a tight nod, still not looking directly at him. “I’m…I’m glad.” She cleared her throat again. “I…I’m so sorry you got hurt, Carter. I can’t believe it all happened like it did. I don’t know what I would have done if—” She didn’t finish her statement, but she didn’t need to.

He didn’t know what he’d do if he lost her either.

Just thinking those words made him want to throw up.

“I’m okay, Roxie.”

She looked up at the sound of her name, and he realized he hadn’t said it aloud in far too long. He needed to change that. Needed to change a lot of things.

But, sometimes, there was no going back.

“I don’t like seeing you hurt.”

“I don’t like being hurt.”

“Thank you.” She licked her lips. “Thank you for saving my sister.” She wiped away a tear, and it wasn’t lost on him that he hadn’t seen her cry for him, but for her sister. Maybe it was all too much for her, or perhaps it was because she didn’t love him enough to break through that barrier of hers.

“Thea’s family,” he said, watching Roxie’s face for her reaction.

She just nodded, still looking partly down at their clasped hands. “And you’re the kind of guy who will throw yourself in harm’s way for family, for strangers, for…everyone.” She let out a shaky breath. “You’re a good man, Carter.”

He didn’t know why those words hurt. They shouldn’t. But then again, most things hurt these days.

They sat in silence for a few more moments and then talked about the family, never themselves. They were good at that. Talking without saying anything. He didn’t know how to fix things without hurting her.

He’d just hurt himself instead.

It took five more days for him to go home, and he knew PT and recovery wouldn’t be easy. It was going to take time. Time he didn’t have with his shop, though his crew was working hard for him. Time he didn’t have because he knew it would be hard on his wife.

But he’d push through.

It wasn’t like he had a choice.

Roxie drove them home, having told the rest of her family she could handle it. He didn’t mind since he didn’t want to deal with the others watching them, trying to see what was going on beneath the surface. He just wanted to be alone, wanted to heal. And he wanted to fix what was going on between him and his wife.

When they walked inside, he winced every few steps, going slow as he tried to catch his breath.

“Here, let me help,” Roxie said after she’d closed the front door. She slid under his good arm and pressed against his unmarred side, taking some of his weight. “Lean on me, I’ve got you.”

Oh, how he wished that were true.

Because he wasn’t looking at her now.

Wasn’t even truly feeling her.

Instead, he looked at the hutch to the side of the entryway, to the stack of papers and folders that hadn’t been there before he was hurt. To the mail that had been delivered in pristine and professional envelopes.

He knew that company.

Knew the name on the label.

And he knew exactly what it was.

He couldn’t look at his wife. At his Roxie.

Because he’d been right.

She wasn’t his.

Because those papers meant it was over.

“Were you going to tell me about the divorce papers, or were you just going to wait and see if I saw them?” he asked, his voice devoid of emotion.

When she didn’t say anything, he moved away from her, walked away.

He couldn’t fix this.

No one could.

He’d lost his Montgomery, his heart.

And there was no going back.

About Carrie Ann Ryan

Carrie Ann Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. Her works include the Montgomery Ink, Redwood Pack, Talon Pack, and Gallagher Brothers series, which have sold over 2.0 million books worldwide. She started writing while in graduate school for her advanced degree in chemistry and hasn’t stopped since. Carrie Ann has written over fifty novels and novellas with more in the works. When she’s not writing about bearded tattooed men or alpha wolves that need to find their mates, she’s reading as much as she can and exploring the world of baking and gourmet cooking.

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Cover Reveal: Ex-Factor Duet by Elisabeth Grace & Michelle Lynn

Release Day – February 28

Will I ever stop hurting the one person who’s never hurt me?

I’ve done things I can never undo.

No matter how much I wish I could, sometimes the wounds I inflict are too deep, too catastrophic, too septic to heal.

As I look into the eyes of the only man I’ve ever loved I know I’ve gone too far. I’ve finally crossed the line.

Even if he knew my reason for doing this, he’d never forgive me.

He always puts my needs before his own.

Now it’s my turn to protect him.

None of that matters though because the betrayal and disgust in his eyes comes from deep within his soul. There’s no coming back from this.

He will forever be tormented by what he’s seen, and he will never forgive me.

The last fragment of my heart to hold out hope that we’d share a future, withers and dies.

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Release Day – April 25

Coming face-to-face with my past changes EVERYTHING.

I’m at the top of my game. All my struggles have finally paid off. Life should be great.

I mean, life is great.

Except for the fact that I can’t stop thinking of her. The woman who mangled my heart into a bloody pulp and never looked back.

If I could free myself of our shared memories, my future would be golden.

There’s only one way to move on—I have to confront the past, so I can move into the next chapter of my life in peace. Which means confronting her for the final time.

I had no idea that knocking on her door that day would turn my life upside down.

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ABOUT ELISABETH GRACE:

USA Today Bestselling author, Elisabeth Grace, has a soft spot for romance novels with happily ever afters and a hot spot for alpha males! She currently lives outside Toronto, Canada with her hubby and two small children. Life is busy, but never too busy for a good story and to share her love of reading and writing with others.

For more of the lowdown feel free to visit her author website at http://www.Elisabeth-Grace.com

ABOUT MICHELLE LYNN:

Michelle moved around the Midwest most of her life, transferring from school to school before settling down in the outskirts of Chicago ten years ago, where she now resides with her husband and two kids.

She loves all thing romance and cries at happy endings!

Visit her at www.michellelynnbooks.com

Waiting for Wednesday: Think Twice by Stephanie Rose

Release Date: 2/22/19

One couple risks it all, while the other may lose everything

At eighteen, PJ was full of dreams. She was on her way to becoming a serious artist and moving across the country, away from the unrequited, tortured dream of her much older brother’s irresistible best friend, Dylan. But when she forced herself to let that dream go, she never expected it to bounce back and refuse to let her.

One fall may have cost Jack everything. After being severely injured while responding to a fire, he lost the girl, the use of his leg, and possibly the career he’s dreamed of all his life. While away at rehab, he connects with Danielle, his physical therapist and a girl from his past. She can heal him in more ways than one, but she’s nursing her own wounds.

When your heart is warring with your head, there’s no time to Think Twice.

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