Single mom Amber Barnett loves family, kids, Christmas…and unfortunately, her boss, confirmed bachelor Michael DeFranco. It’s a crush she really needs to get over. Except, when she’s temporarily forced from her apartment, her only option is to stay at Michael’s private ski lodge, where she’s the housekeeper. No problem. Her handsome boss rarely visits Snowflake Valley unexpectedly, plus he’s spending the holidays with his family. Or so she thinks…
A stormy Christmas Eve reunion leaves Michael seeking the solitude of his lodge, where he finds Amber in residence—and in trouble. Attempting to save her from her matchmaking family, he announces they’re a couple. His good deed backfires when they’re instantly included in each and every holiday event in town. So much for solitude.
Only the more time he spends with the beautiful, cheery brunette, the more he yearns to make things real between them. But he and Amber want different things, and Michael could never be the family man she’s looking for.
One Week to Win Her Boss is the second stand-alone story in Barbara White Daille’s Snowflake Valley series from Entangled Bliss. And to celebrate this week’s book birthday, Barbara’s sharing an exclusive excerpt and a giveaway!
Thanks for welcoming me to EverAfter Romance! I’m happy to be here and thrilled to have a new release from Entangled Bliss, especially because my series is all about the holidays.
I’ve been writing romances set in small towns for over ten years now and I love every minute of it. I’ve set book in cities too – L.A and Auckland – but there’s just something about the dynamics of small town life that’s fascinating. Maybe I’m just a classic nosey parker, but I love the complex relationships in a small town, the incredible connections between people and the depths of history you can find there.
My parents were high school teachers and as they moved up in their careers it meant moving towns – always small. And by small, I mean 800-1000 people. Okay, there were some annoying bits, like when we’d go away on holiday and the minute we were back home and had switched the light on, there would be people knocking on the door needing something that couldn’t wait a second longer. There were humbling times too. I can remember vividly, the day we held the funeral for a boy in my class who had been killed in a car accident on one of our remote country roads. The whole town came to the cemetery that day and for weeks after when I walked past his parents’ house I’d see home baking and flowers on their front step, or one of their friends mowing their lawns or bringing in the laundry.
I’ve chosen to bring my kids up in a small town too and while my daughters roll their eyes and say our town’s boring, and my boys can’t wait to hit the mall when we visit the city, I think they secretly love it as much as I do.
I wasn’t a rookie, but I made a mistake because I was selfish, impulsive, and headstrong.
I was also in love.
My desire for her overwhelmed me. Consumed me. Distracted me.
To protect her, I stood motionless as my partner pried her from the security of my arms. I watched as she fought his hold. I even listened when she screamed that she hated me.
For years I’ve been patient, I’ve been smart, and I’ve gone by the book. But now… it’s finally over.
It’s time to get my girl back.
When I show up to reclaim what’s mine, I discover she’s not ready to forgive me quite yet… but that’s okay, because I have no problem reminding her just how good it used to be, even if I have to show her over and over again.
What I do have a problem with is the guy who’s been trying to take my place. Because here’s the thing, I’ve waited too long to have her in my arms again to have anybody stand in my way… and I’m done following the rules.
Check out an exclusive excerpt below!
Without taking his concentration off me, he strides in my direction. The intensity of his attention is suffocating. I sharply draw in a gulp of air because he’s going to be in front of me in a second. Close enough to touch. To smell again.
He ignores another officer calling him and comes at me, stopping even closer than earlier. His arms raise, and the rough callouses on his fingers abrade my cheeks when he holds my face in his hands. “Are you okay?”
My lips part. Words form on my tongue but won’t roll off.
“Livvie.” He leans down so he’s eye level with me. “You okay?”
My heart hammers.
“Yes.” I practically moan, and we sway closer together. His thighs rub against mine, and he’s close enough that if I took a deep breath, my hardened nipples could seek relief from brushing against his chest.
A moment is all it takes. Time suspends and the air around us is without gravity as I float from a single touch. I don’t know exactly what it is, but something is happening between us. Something big.
A man yells, and I jump as Jay reacts before I can blink. He turns around, blocking me from seeing anything except his tense and muscular back. Grabbing me with one hand behind his back, he reaches for his gun with the other.
A moment of panic surges through me, but when his shoulders relax and he lowers his hand from the gun on his belt, my head falls forward to land on the center of his back. His fingers flex on my hip, assuring me everything is okay—or at least he’ll make sure of it—and a state of lust immediately replaces my fear. So powerful it makes me whimper.
He turns around but remains close and lifts my chin, causing my head to tilt up so I lock eyes with his. “I need to see you later.”
“Okay.” I need him to see me. I want to see him, too.
“I’m off in two hours. Will you be home then?”
One hundred and twenty minutes. “Yes,” I whisper.
“Jesus.” He steps back and takes no shame in devouring me with his eyes. “Christ. Be ready for me, Livvie.”
Anna Brooks began writing when she thought the world would want to hear her sick lyrics through song. Since then, she’s realized her childhood dream wasn’t so far-fetched, just misguided. Now she writes romance with real emotions and happy endings. If Anna isn’t writing or reading, she can be found by a space heater drinking a ridiculous amount of Diet Dr Pepper. She also likes to hang out with her husband and two boys. If it wasn’t for them, she wouldn’t ever leave the house. Anna was born in Wisconsin but now lives in the Evergreen State.
Isabelle Oster has dreamed of being a prima ballerina her entire life, so when the only male dancer backs out of the fall production, she’s devastated. Without a partner, she has no hope of earning a spot with the prestigious Ballet Americana company. Until hot jock Garret practicing stretches in one of the studios gives Izzy an idea, and she whips out her phone. But does she really want this badly enough to resort to blackmail?
All-state tight end Garret Mitchell will do anything to get a college football scholarship. Even taking ballet, which surprisingly isn’t so bad, because it means he gets to be up close and personal with the gorgeous Goth girl Izzy while learning moves to increase his flexibility. But Izzy needs him to perform with her for the Ballet Americana spot, and he draws the line at getting on stage. Especially wearing tights.
Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains a bit of blackmail, a lot of sarcasm, and an ending guaranteed to melt your heart.
We had Ally Matthews, author of OFFSETTING PENALTIES, on the blog to answer our burning questions! Now, let’s jump in!
What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?
Sixteen Candles Spoiler Alert (highlight to reveal) The ending of Sixteen Candles. It was so wonderfully awkward and romantic at the same time for Jake to pick up Samantha after her sister’s wedding and give her a birthday cake after her family forgot her birthday.
For The Princesss Bride, my favorite scene is where Buttercup pushes Wesley down the hill, and when he says, “As you wish,” she realizes who he his. Of course, I can’t help but judge her a bit for not recognizing who he was immediately.
Truth: A painful condition caused by a prolonged state of sexual arousal without release.
Myth: Only affects males.
I’m beyond frustrated with the man who’s left me high and very far from dry. Multiple times. But, somehow, even though I’m not interested in a relationship, Mr. Tall-Dark-and-Handsome keeps me coming back for more—one crazy, sexual debacle after the next.
Come hell or high water, the stars will align, and the release will be out of this world.
I’m captivated with the woman who’s left me sixty-nine shades of blue, and she’s only in this for one thing. The first time, I blew it—and not in the good way—but I’m going to ensure we finally see it through. I need to put an end to this “plague” of sexual calamities and prove to Sarah that we can have more.
It’s time to grab the universe by the balls and show it who’s boss.
RC BOLDTis the wife of Mr. Boldt, a retired Navy Chief, mother of Little Miss Boldt, and former teacher of many students. She currently lives on the southeastern coast of North Carolina, enjoys long walks on the beach, running, reading, people watching, and singing karaoke. If you’re in the mood for some killer homemade mojitos, can’t recall the lyrics to a particular 80’s song, or just need to hang around a nonconformist who will do almost anything for a laugh, she’s your girl.
First in a fresh contemporary romance series from award-winning debut author Debbie Burns.
Every heart has a forever home.
Megan Anderson loves the animals at her no-kill shelter. She’ll do anything for them—even go toe-to-toe with a handsome man who’s in way over his head. She’ll help him sort out his troubles, but getting too close to an adorable puppy’s human counterpart? Been there, done that, got burned.
When Craig Williams arrived at the local shelter for help, he didn’t expect a fiery young woman to blaze into his life. But the more time they spend together, the more he realizes it’s not just animals Megan is adept at saving—she could be the one to rescue his heart.
Soon, Craig and Megan find that the magic of unconditional love can do anything…even lead to their forever home.
Check out our exclusive excerpt below!
Working to suppress the shivers traversing her spine, Megan switched the travel mug of sweet-scented mocha to her free hand and tucked her half-frozen one into her coat pocket. She tried not to focus on how much warmer the shoulder was that was rubbing against Craig’s upper arm as they meandered the darkened streets of Webster Groves.
“I wish it were still Christmas so you could see it,” she said. “I always feel like I’m in a snow globe because the houses are done up so cute.”
“It’d be colder if it were Christmas. It’s mid-March, and I can’t feel my toes.”
My husband is a news junkie. He has the network news on TV and is on his iPad cruising other sites. When something big happens he is glued to the TV.
I hate that.
I am not a news junkie. In fact, I would be really happy to only hear the weather report, the sports scores, and how kittens got rescued from trees. That doesn’t mean my head is in the sand or I walk around like Pollyanna, but why go searching for bad news?
I work in a school for kids who have dropped out or have been kicked out of regular school. I teach teen moms, drug dealers, drug addicts, gang members, depressed students, bullied students, and a huge cross section of LGBTQ students who felt they didn’t fit in at their regular high schools. Many of my students are now or have been homeless. Many of them have been abused or neglected by the very people who are supposed to love them the most. This year alone I had 3 students die from drug overdoses.
Trust me when I say, I know the world has bad things in it.
Aw, baseball, America’s pastime. There’s nothing better than sitting in the stands and watching a player smash a 90+ mph fastball over the wall. The art of the game, the patience, the strategy, and those hot baseball pants, what’s not to love?
I’m a lifelong St. Louis Cardinals fan, but I love watching games even if my RedBirds aren’t playing. Pitching duels, high scoring games, the long ball, I’ll sit through anything. Even a rain delay. Naturally, I also enjoy the sexiness on the field.
So here are my top 5 sexy baseball players who don’t play for the Cardinals:
Kris Bryant – 3rd baseman for Chicago Cubs – just look at those eyes. It also helps that he’s one hell of a player. His batting stance is almost perfect.
Derek Jeter – former shortstop for New York Yankees – no list is complete without Jeter who seems to get better with age. Retirement suits him.
Kevin Kiermaier – center fielder for Tampa Bay Rays – I watch the Rays when I can. For good reason.
Dustin Ackley – 2nd baseman for Los Angeles Angels – The crooked smile is stuff novels are made of.
David Freese – 3rd baseman for Pittsburgh Pirates – Okay this is a bit of a cheat since Freese was the hero of the Cardinals 2011 World Series run, but he plays for the enemy now so…
ANNOUNCING THREE BEAUTIFUL NEW TRADE PAPERBACK EDITIONS FROM THE COLORADO MOUNTAIN SERIES!
Life isn’t meant to be perfect. It’s meant to be lived . . .
Nina Sheridan thought she’d found the perfect man who would become the perfect husband. She was wrong. When Nina realizes the man she planned to grow old with doesn’t know her at all, it’s time to rethink her idea of perfect. And what better place to get her life in order than a remote Colorado mountain town halfway around the world?
Gnaw Bone, Colorado, may not be flashy or cosmopolitan, but it’s got a brand of hospitality all its own. Nina isn’t entirely sure she’s ready to trade the life she thought she wanted in England for cozy evenings in her mountain retreat, and she definitely isn’t sure she’s ready to handle the connection she feels to the owner of her rental house, Max Holden . . .
Nina didn’t come to Colorado to find love, but even the best-laid plans can go awry. Now, if Nina can let go of her past, Max-and a future in Gnaw Bone-might just be the perfect second chance she’s been waiting for.
In my new release, Talk British to Me, my hero is the Dating Guy on a popular morning radio show. To keep his identity a secret, he uses a different name and a British accent. This makes him a very popular Brit. He’s definitely my current favorite. But I’ve got others too—Daniel Craig (I may or may not have a picture of me photo shopped next to him, just saying), Henry Cavill, David Beckham, Agatha Christie, Daphne du Maurier, to name a few—and I thought surely some of my favorite authors also have favorite Brits, so I asked them! Here’s what they had to say…
Samanthe Beck, author of Emergency Attraction ~ Hands down, John Oliver from HBO’s Last Week Tonight. I love him. I’m talking, like, restraining order level love. I can’t even properly articulate why this Brit works my shit, but he does. Want a .gif? Cuz I’ve got a .gif!
Penny Reid, author of Dating-ish ~ Ada Lovelace is my favorite Brit.
Not only was she one of the world’s first programmers, she was also a mathematician, computer scientist, scientist writer, created the first algorithm, AND was a countess. I also love that she is Lord Byron’s only legitimate child. How cool is that? The father of romanticism gave birth to the mother of computer science.
J. Kenner, author of Bitch Slap ~ Bond. James Bond. Because freaking awesome, that’s why!
Rachel Harris, author of The Nanny Arrangement ~ Oh gosh, that’s so hard to choose! I think I have to go with Colin Firth. He’ll forever be Mr. Darcy and that man and movie can get me out of any funk I’m in. Sick? Pride & Prejudice time. Sad? Turn it on. Bored? Yup, I lose myself in his brooding stare. But I also have a huge girl crush on Emma Watson 🙂
Hayson Manning, author of Taming the CEO ~ My favorite Brit hands down would be JK Rowling for bringing us, Harry Potter. I’ve had the joy of reading the books to my kids, watching the movies. We’ve laughed, we’ve cried (don’t get me started on Hedwig). So thank you to JK Rowling for inspiring generations of kids to dive into a book (and their parents too).
Cindi Madsen, author of Confessions of a Former Puck Bunny ~ It’s so hard to pick just one favorite Brit when there are so many hotties to choose from. I’m going to have to go with Richard Armitage. If you haven’t watched him in the North & South miniseries, you’re missing out. Between the looks, sexy accent, brooding, and the crazy intense romantic tension–need I say more?–I fell a little bit in love with him. (Oh & it’s totes on Netflix right now)
Julie Richman, author of The Do-Over ~ Patsy and Edina. Hands down my favorite Brits. My nephew calls me “Aunt Eddie” – and there’s a reason for that (yup, I’m owning up to it). I can binge on Season’s of AbFab and love to do it with close friends and family members who “get it”. Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley are brilliant and a fantasy of mine, Sweetie Darling, would be to write with Jennifer Saunders someday. I’ll bring the Bolly. Wear LaCroix.
(Welshmen aren’t Brits, are they? UK and all…because if we can squeeze them in…the handsome man on my next cover, Jason Caselton, would need to be on the list…and probably need to be on an AbFab episode).
*Robin here – I just googled Jason and yep, no problem staring at him for a while.
Anissa Garcia, author of The Promise Series ~ My favorite Brit?? I have to choose one?!! Hmm…Mr. Darcy because he has more than 10 thousand a year. 😉 But, seriously, he may not be completely charming, but he’s dashing, sincere, and tries to do the right thing.
And Tom Hardy because he rescues people and dogs in real life.
Maggie Kelley, author of One Little Kiss ~ Well…wrap Matthew Goode up in a Union Jack and I’m a goner but…my true Brit crush is Mick Jagger. Never knew sexy until I spent a night in the third row of a Stones concert-watching Mick strut. Damn, that devil’s got all my sympathy.
Who is your favorite Brit?
About ROBIN BIELMAN
When not attached to her laptop, USA Today Bestselling Author Robin Bielman can almost always be found with her nose in a book. A California girl, the beach is her favorite place for fun and inspiration. Her fondness for swoon-worthy heroes who flirt and stumble upon the girl they can’t live without jumpstarts most of her story ideas.
About TALK BRITISH TO ME:
As the Dating Guy on L.A.’s top morning show, I give the single guy’s perspective on dating, love, and sex—and I give great advice. Everyone’s hooking up…well, except for me. Sure, I can get any woman I want, but I’ve got a “no relationship” clause in my contract and the only woman I want has “relationship” written all over her. Probably stamped on her ass, too. And wouldn’t I like to confirm that.
Unfortunately, she wants nothing to do with me. At all. Something about the next Ice Age might have even come up in her rebuttal. Adorable. Because she’s determined to ignore what one simple kiss proved: she wants me as badly as I want her.
Everything in me is screaming to go after her, but I’ve got a secret that I’m fairly certain will end up with her roasting my nuts over an open fire. So, job on the line? Check. Nuts on the line? Check. Can’t get her out of my head? Nail…meet coffin. But what a way to go…