The First One Tease

Tuesday is Tease Day! Today we’re going to check out a little of The First OneBook 2 in The One Trilogy.

The One Trilogy is very near and dear to my heart. These characters have wormed their way into my heart, so that I think we may be visiting the small Georgia town of Burton more in the future.

In The Last One, we met Sam’s little sister Ali, who’s worked side-by-side with him to keep their family farm afloat. She and Meghan become friends, and Ali confides that the father of her little girl Bridget is not the guy she married suddenly seven years before; it was actually her high school boyfriend, Flynn Evans, who left town never knowing he was going to be a father. He broke Ali’s heart, and although Sam has no idea that Flynn is Bridget’s father, Ali confides in her brother that she never got over her very first boyfriend.

When Flynn returns to Burton in The First One, he’s in for quite a few surprises. It’s not smooth sailing by any means; both Ali and Flynn have years of hurt to overcome. But one day Flynn and Bridget surprise Ali with a picnic. . .

 

Flynn lay back on the blanket with groan. “I don’t think I can move again for at least a week. You’ll have to stand guard over me until I can get up.”

            I laughed. “You’re on your own, buddy. I happen to know the mosquitos’ve started coming out, and down here they bite like a son-of-a-bitch.”

  iphone6greyleft_579x1711          He feigned shock. “Why, Miss Reynolds, such language. And in front of your child.” He shook his head, tsk-tsking the whole time.

            “She can’t hear anything from down at the water, and she’s not paying any attention to us at all. She’s playing water sprite.”

            “Well, in that case. . .” Flynn reached for my hand and threaded his fingers through mine. “I’ve been waiting all evening to hold your hand.”

            I couldn’t help my smile. “Oh, really? Well, you’ve shown great restraint, then.”

            “I’d say so.” He tugged a little, throwing me off balance so that I landed on his chest, my boobs pressed against him and my hand pinned between us. “Now, this is even better.”

            “What’re you doing, Flynn?” I swallowed, wondering if he could feel my heart pounding against him.

            “I’m holding you. I’m enjoying feeling you against me. You might even say I’m canoodling with you. Isn’t that what people do on picnics, after they eat? They canoodle?”

            I shifted, bringing my head back just far enough that I could see him better. “I don’t know. Is that what’s traditional?”

            He rubbed his hand in slow circles, up and down my back. “I remember being on a picnic with you, at another spot on this very river. Just the two of us. And after we ate, I undressed you. And kissed you. And touched you here.” He slid his hand to cover one of my breasts. “And touched you here.” The same hand shimmied lower, to cup me between my legs. “And I made you come for the first time. Do you remember that?”

            My breath was coming in shallow gasps. “Of course I do.”

            Flynn lifted his head to whisper in my ear. “If we were alone right now, I’d do it again. I’d make you come, over and over, until all you could remember was my name and all you could feel were my fingers and my lips.”

            “Mommy? What’re you doing?”

            I jerked away from Flynn, trying to sit up, but he had a grip on my arm. “Mommy’s fine, honeybunch. She’s just canoodling with me.” He grinned, and I was pretty sure my whole body was about to burst into flames.

            “What’s canoodling?” Bridget crossed her arms over her chest, one eyebrow raised in skepticism.

            “It’s what two people—two grown-up people—do when they like each other very much. And I like your mother very much.”

            My daughter shifted her stare to me. “Do you like Daddy very much, too?”

            I licked my lips, and Flynn rubbed his hand on my hip. Like I needed another distraction. “I—yes, Bridget. I like your daddy very much.”

            She nodded. “Okay, I guess that’s all right. Is it time for cookies yet?”

            Flynn pushed himself to sit up, holding onto my hand all the while. “I think we can make that happen.” As he reached for the basket, he lowered his voice so that only I could hear him. “Funny, I was just wishing for the taste of something. . .sweet.”

            I swatted his arm. “Flynn Evans, you’re incorrigible.”

            Laughing, he brought my hand to his lips and kissed my knuckles. “Oh, I try, sweetheart. I do try.”

 

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The Only One releases on April 7th, but you can preorder it here! Don’t wait. . .

Amazon/iBooks/BN

Mason Wallace left his hometown to live his dream: he had the perfect career, a gorgeous wife and a beautiful baby girl. He was on top of the world, until it all shattered with the sudden death of his wife. Now he’s back in Georgia, running his bar and trying to take care of his family. And he needs all the help he can get.

Rilla Grant’s never been farther than twenty miles from her family’s farm. Her overprotective father wants her to marry their church’s youth pastor and settle down into the life he’s chosen for her, but she’s not sure that’s what she wants anymore. Rilla’s chafing to make her own choices, and that includes starting her own PR business and maybe even moving off the farm, no matter how much her dad hates it.

When Mason asks Rilla to work on some promotion for his bar, she’s both excited and terrified. Excited, because it’s just the opportunity she’s wanted, and terrified because Mason, with his electric blue eyes and drool-worthy body, is the kind of guy who makes her knees weak and her heart pound. He’s the only one who’s ever tempted Rilla to defy her family, and when she does just that by moving in to help take care of his daughter, they’re both forced to make a decision that’ll change their lives forever.

Sometimes love isn’t the easy choice. Sometimes it’s the only one.

The Last One Tease

It’s Tuesday, which means it’s time for a new teaser. Since this month we’ll be ramping up for the release of The Only One, the final book in The One trilogy, I thought we all might enjoy a little visit with Sam and Meghan, two of my favorite characters.

If you haven’t read The Last One, a little clarification. It’s actually the first book in the trilogy. And The First One is the second book. Are you clear now?

The Last OneWe first met Meghan Hawthorne in The Posse, which was the story of her mother, Jude, and how she found a second chance at love after the all-too-early death of her first husband, Meghan’s father Daniel. In that book, Meghan’s not entirely happy about the changes happening in her family, and she’s not shy about letting them know.

The Last One begins almost a year after those events. Meghan, who’s just finished her junior year at art college in Savannah, takes a summer volunteer position as art teacher in a small Georgia town. To her dismay, she’s assigned to stay with a family that includes a guy she met briefly–and unhappily–during one drunk night the previous spring.

Sam doesn’t want anything to do with the pretty party girl who’s staying at his house for the summer. No matter how much he might be attracted to her, he’s sworn to keep his distance. But that might prove to be harder than either of them realize.

The Last One is told from both Meghan and Sam’s points of view. This tease comes from a Sam chapter, when the two are finally reaching a detente.

 

Meghan stood and stretched her arms high over her head. Without missing a beat, she bent at the waist and leaned to touch the tops of her feet. I watched, my mouth hanging open, as the neck of her shirt sagged. I could see right down the front, to the swell of her breasts over the cups of a black bra and the flat of her stomach. The denim shorts tightened over her pert little ass, and again I was having a hard time sitting still.

She straightened and caught me staring. Taking a step forward, she stood about an inch away from my knees, close enough for me to touch if I just reached one hand forward.

“I’m glad we’re friends now, Sam.” She spoke softly, and the whisper caressed my face. “You know, we could be the kind of friends who. . .well, your kind of friends. No complications. No drama. Just fun and. . .” She exhaled and ran a hand over her curls, bunching them at the back of her neck. “Maybe letting off a little steam.”

All I had to do was reach up and put my hand to her waist, tug her forward, and I knew she’d melt into me. It was what we both wanted, I knew, but it was what might happen after that kept me from moving.

“Meghan, what I said before stands. I’m too old for you. And you’re a guest in my home, so I’m not going to take advantage of you. That wouldn’t be right.”

“It’s not taking advantage if I offer. If I want it, too. I’m not asking you for a commitment here, Sam. I’m just saying, we could give each other what we both need.”

I had to get away, now, or I was going to give in. Her scent filled me, and she was so close that I could feel heat coming off her body in waves. I clenched my teeth together and stood up, moving her back gently with my hands on her upper arms.

“I’m going inside now, before I do something that you and I would both end up regretting. I’ll be your friend, Meghan. But that’s all I can do.”

I released her arms and turned to go back inside. As the screen door closed quietly behind me, I cursed myself as a fool and stomped upstairs toward a cold shower that had nothing to do with the air temperature.

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The Only One releases on April 7th, but you can preorder it here! Don’t wait. . .

Amazon/iBooks/BN

Mason Wallace left his hometown to live his dream: he had the perfect career, a gorgeous wife and a beautiful baby girl. He was on top of the world, until it all shattered with the sudden death of his wife. Now he’s back in Georgia, running his bar and trying to take care of his family. And he needs all the help he can get.

Rilla Grant’s never been farther than twenty miles from her family’s farm. Her overprotective father wants her to marry their church’s youth pastor and settle down into the life he’s chosen for her, but she’s not sure that’s what she wants anymore. Rilla’s chafing to make her own choices, and that includes starting her own PR business and maybe even moving off the farm, no matter how much her dad hates it.

When Mason asks Rilla to work on some promotion for his bar, she’s both excited and terrified. Excited, because it’s just the opportunity she’s wanted, and terrified because Mason, with his electric blue eyes and drool-worthy body, is the kind of guy who makes her knees weak and her heart pound. He’s the only one who’s ever tempted Rilla to defy her family, and when she does just that by moving in to help take care of his daughter, they’re both forced to make a decision that’ll change their lives forever.

Sometimes love isn’t the easy choice. Sometimes it’s the only one.

Best Teased Cold

This teaser Tuesday is also a throwback Tuesday–I’m sharing a little piece of Best Served Cold, the first book in the Perfect Dish series. If you haven’t read it yet, you’re in luck; it’s free right now for just another week. Grab it while you can!

Best Served Cold - Tawdra KandleJulia is a college junior whose boyfriend Liam broke up with her very publicly and with a heaping side of humiliation. She’s determined to get payback by making him fall for her all over again and then turning the tables to mortify him in front of their friends. The plan’s humming along until Julia meets Jesse, a grad student with curly brown hair and dimples. The deeper she falls for him, the less important her revenge plans seem.

In this scene, Julia and Jesse are on their second date, at Jesse’s apartment; Julia’s cooking after they enjoy a movie together. They’ve discovered a mutual love for Joss Whedon, so the movie Jess chooses is a no-brainer. I loved this particular interchange, because it plays very close to my own love for all things Joss and for superhero movies. Yes, The Avengers is one of my all-time favorites. I watch it every time it comes on. Who can blame me?

 

I sat on the sofa, and Jesse picked up a remote before he joined me, sitting close enough that our legs touched. He clicked on the television and draped an arm over the back of the couch behind me.

            “So what did you decide on?” I shifted a little closer.

            “A stroke of genius. We both love Joss, and we need an action movie. Well, I needed an action movie. So. . .” He hit the play button. “The Avengers.”

            I grinned. “One of my favorites. You couldn’t have done any better.”

            “Huh.” He fast-forwarded through the previews. “Do I rock or what? But seriously, you’re okay with this one?”

            “Umm, Chris Hemsworth, Robert Downey, Jr. and Jeremy Renner? Are you kidding?”

            Jesse shook his head. “Nice. Way to make me feel secure in my manliness. So later when I kiss you, you’re going to be imagining I’m Thor? Or Hawkeye?”

            “Thor? Really?” I raised one eyebrow in mock skepticism.

            “Okay, I see how it is.” He settled back as the movie began. “Don’t forget Scarlett Johansson is in this, too. Black Widow is smokin’.”

            I snuggled down as he curved his arm around me. “I’m very secure. It wasn’t Scarlett you had hot on the counter five minutes ago.”

            He lifted my chin with one finger, turning my eyes toward him. “I had you hot?”

            “Shhh, I like the beginning.”

***

            “How badass was Iron Man in that movie?” I dug through a drawer in the kitchen. “Hey, do you have measuring spoons?”

            Jesse shrugged. “I don’t know. Maybe? Sarah put the bare essentials in here. I don’t cook, so who knows?”

            I gave up. “I’ll make do. Can you grab me the cream from the fridge?”

            “That I can do.” Jesse pushed off the counter where he’d been leaning to watch me cook and retrieve the container. He set it down next the stove. “So you really think Ironman is the leader of the Avengers?”

            I nodded. “No question. I mean, Hulk, he’s got the brute strength, but not so much with the reasoning skills, right? Captain America is hot in a clean-cut retro way, but he’s still getting up to speed on the twenty-first century stuff. Thor’s just a visitor. He’s not from earth. And Hawkeye and Black Widow. . .well, they have potential, but not the whole package. Yet.” I eyeballed what I hoped was a tablespoon of tomato paste and added it to the pan.

            “You’ve obviously given this a lot of thought.” Jesse stood with his arms crossed on his chest.

            I grinned at him. “I never thought I was a geek. I don’t love comic books or anything, but I have to admit, I’m a sucker for superhero movies.”

            “What about Spiderman?”

            I raised my eyebrows. “Oh, yeah.”

            “Which one? New or old?”

            I checked the pasta. The penne was still a little too al dente. “New. I don’t have anything against Toby, but Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone?” I fanned myself. “Yeah. Definite chemistry.”

 

Best Served Cold is Book 1 in the Perfect Dish series. You can find it at Amazon, BN and iBooks. There are currently two more books available in this series, Just Desserts and I Choose You; the final book, Just Roll With It, will be released June, 2015.

The Only One Sneak Peek (Part 1)

If it’s Tuesday, it must be time to get a little sneak peek of my latest work-in-progress. . .

This week I’m working on The Only One, the last book in The One Trilogy. I have to be honest. I’m so loving this book, and I am so freaking sad to say good bye to all the characters in Burton, Georgia. Part of me is wondering if ‘trilogy’ can stretch to four or five books. . .hmmm. . .

Western boots and hat with vintage toneLike all The One books, TOO is written in dual point of view, both Mason’s and Rilla’s. This particular piece is taken from Rilla’s chapter.

Dad had taken Gram’s place at the sink, and he glanced at me over his shoulder as I came back into the kitchen. “You’re late. Did you leave your grandmother to make dinner by herself? You know I expect better.”

            I steeled myself against wincing. That had been the story of my life. He expected better. I’d been disappointing my father as long as I remembered. I always wondered if those had been the first words I’d heard upon being born. And I wondered if my mother had felt the same way, which would explain why she’d gotten off the farm and as far away from Burton, Georgia as soon as she could.

            “I got here as fast as I could, but—”

            “Emmett, leave the child be. I started supper early today, and there wasn’t a blessed thing Rilla could’ve done to help me. She would’ve been in my way.” Gram shot me a wink and a smile.

Remember, you can pre-order The Only One right here on AmazoniBooksBarnes and Noble and Kobo. I can’t wait to show the cover. All in good time, my pretties, all in good time. . .

(And if you haven’t read the first two books yet–The Last One and The First One–get to it! TOO releases April 7th.)