Release Blitz: The Secret by Christie Ridgway

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A single dad…a marriage of convenience…and a secret!
The Secret by Christie Ridgway is NOW LIVE!

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Being butler to a widower and single father is a dream job in more ways than one for Charlotte “Charlie” Emerson. She helps keep businessman Ethan Archer’s household running without a hitch and enjoys every minute she has with his six-year-old son, Wells. But as time passes, the situation feels alarmingly intimate and when her heart starts beating faster each time Ethan steps through the door, Charlie must exert rigid control over her feelings.

With her secret, falling in love would be all kinds of bad…

Ethan Archer values the woman who keeps his life in order and cares so much for his motherless boy. He and Charlie act in harmony with each other and it’s not hard to picture them as a little family…in fact, it’s so easy, one reckless night he proposes a marriage of convenience.
What will he do if Charlie says yes? And worse, what if she tells him no?

See my review here!

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About the Author:

Christie Ridgway is a California native and author of over forty-five contemporary romances. A six-time RITA finalist and USA Today bestselling author, she writes sexy, emotional reads starring determined heroines and the men who can’t help but love them. She has a Career Achievement award from RT Book Reviews and twice has received their Reviewer’s Choice award for best contemporary romance of the year. Married to her college sweetheart, Christie lives in Southern California in a house filled with boys and pets. She writes as an escape from sports equipment, football on TV, and dog hair.
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The Secret by Christie Ridgway

IMG_2118This is the first book I’ve read by Christie Ridgway, but it definitely will not be the last. The Secret was all kinds of sweetness, sexiness and a very emotional read.

I fell in love with all the central characters as they came on the scene. Charlotte “Charlie” is the butler for the Archer household. She keeps everything running smoothly, including taking care of six-year-old Wells Archer. Wells is adorable and so well behaved, and he adores Charlie. Ethan Archer is Well’s father. Ethan works a lot and is away a lot, so having Charlie is a necessity. But one thing is certain, Ethan adores his son. Ethan’s wife, and Well’s mother, died four years earlier. Ethan hasn’t moved on, or started dating since. His boss has been really leaning on him, pushing him to date. This is when Ethan begins to notice Charlie. He’s always liked Charlie, and appreciated her. But has he always noticed how gorgeous she was?

Charlie has a hard time. She has had a crush on her boss, Ethan, for a while. But, Charlie knows it wouldn’t be right to act on that. It wouldn’t be professional, it would be against everything she learned at the Continental Butler School. But slowly she breaks down and I love the flirting that goes on between the two. And of course their first priority is Wells and so they are very careful about that.

The thing I kept finding hard to accept was that Ethan said he already had the love of his life, and he could never have that again. He didn’t believe there was room in his heart to love anyone else, because the love for his dead wife and his son were filling his heart. But he wanted her to marry her, as a marriage of convenience. He was extremely attracted to her and cared about her, it was the love word…he couldn’t do that. But she was ok with that. I was like…WHAT!!!

But, don’t let that discourage you folks. This is a HEA and I absolutely loved the ending!!! This was such a sweet book with really great characters!! If you love a good romance, I bet you’ll love this one!!

~Thanks to the author for providing a copy of this book via L Woods PR in exchange for my honest thoughts.

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Smile, Chewie (Furever Home Friends #2) by Savy Leiser

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First off the story of Smile, Chewie was absolutely adorable. But, it was also full of lessons for children and, in my opinion, for all of us. I loved the forward at the beginning mentioning what a forever home is and how unfortunately many dogs struggle to find their forever home. Then at the end of the story she wrote some really great discussion questions for parents, kids and dogs! The questions range from thoughts about shelter dogs to thoughts about feeling self conscious, being confident. How to help the homeless (whether people or dogs, depending on how you want to discuss it), and how to help shelter dogs. Wonderful questions to help your child to think about and open up and say what they feel. Just brilliant!!

I also have to give enormous credit to Christy Schneyman for the wonderful illustrations, they are so well done and perfect for catching a child’s eye!!

I am so impressed with this book, and think that Savy Leiser did such an amazing job putting it together!! I highly recommend it! I will be purchasing a copy for my cousin’s little girl, I know she will just love it!!

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*I would like to thank the author for a copy of this book, which I’m giving my honest review on*

Princess Allee (A Furever Home Friends Story) by Savy Leiser

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Princess Allee starts out in the Forward saying, “A forever home is exactly what it sounds like: a home you can live in forever, with a family that will always love you unconditionally. Unfortunately, many dogs struggle to find their forever homes…As these dogs roam from place to place, they all have one wish: to find a family that will love them forever.”

What a wonderful beginning to this story. It starts out where Allee is dreaming of finding her forever home. She’s convinced that she is a princess and her forever home will be castle and she will have a crown and thrown. It’s such a cute story, and the illustrations make it that much more charming.

At the end of the story there are the questions for discussion with Parents, kids, dogs, etc. I love this aspect of these Furever Home Friends books. I think the question are well written and the story written well, so that parent and child could have a really open and heartfelt discussion. This book asked questions like, do you remember a time when things didn’t meet your expectations? How did you make the best of the situation? What are some difficulties siblings can face when trying to get along? How can they resolve them? And more! Just brilliant questions for discussions with your children. They will love talking about Allee so much, it will open them right up!!

Savy Leiser is quite exceptional at putting these books together, and I think that they are fabulously done!!! I would highly recommend the Forever Home Friends Stories. I have a few children in mind that I’m planning on buying them for.

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*I would like to thank the author for a copy of this book, which I’m giving my honest review on*

 

Release Blitz: Hold Me Close by Vanessa Vale

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One cowboy is never enough…

Hold Me Close by Vanessa Vale is NOW LIVE!

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Rachel wants one thing in life, a family of her own. But she’s not going to get it without a man. Or can she?

They may have ruined their chances in the past, but Matt and Ethan know Rachel’s the woman for them. When they discover her plans, they tell her they’ll give her exactly what she wants. The old fashioned way. Because once they get their hands on her, they’ll hold her close and never let go.

Warning: Panty melting! Hold Me Close is book 4 in the wildly dirty series where two obsessed alpha cowboys give the woman of their dreams exactly what she desires. This standalone HEA is all about her – no M/M.

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EXCERPT:

Even though I was born and raised in Montana, I’d never really understood the appeal of the rodeo circuit. The animals, wrangling them, tying little calves’ ankles up as fast as possible. But as I watched this cowboy riding the massive bull, the muscles of his chest rippling beneath the fabric of his shirt as his arms bulged beneath the strained material, I finally got it. He rocked back and forth, balancing and going with the jerky motions of the angry beast, arm flung up over his head.

Oh Lordy, I got it.

I gasped when the bull kicked out its hind legs, not because I was scared for the cowboy but because of the way his thighs contracted beneath those jeans to stay on its back. Jeans, I might add, that left little to the imagination. The whole thing was stupid, plain stupid. Stay on a bull for eight seconds, but somehow every one of my hot buttons was pushed watching the testosterone-fest.

“Here’s a napkin.” My sister’s voice cut into my openmouthed gawking. I turned to face Emmy, who somehow still managed to look sleek and stylish in a jean skirt and flowy top even when eight months pregnant. She held out one of the napkins she’d nabbed when she’d gone to get herself an ice cream cone.

I frowned at it. “What’s that for?”

Emmy grinned. “You’ve got a little drool there.”

My frown turned into a scowl. “I was not drooling.” I turned away and subtly swiped the corners of my mouth just in case.

“Whatever you say, sis.” I didn’t have to see her to know she was rolling her eyes in my direction. Even though she was younger, Emmy had the air of a know-it-all older sister. But then, she was the one who was happily married with a baby on the way while I was still deeply rooted in spinsterhood with no end in sight. Somehow, this seemed to give her an advantage that negated my two years’ seniority.

Emmy had a Bridgewater marriage, which meant she was the lucky bride of two doting, protective men. Like all my siblings, she had a big heart and a good head on her shoulders and I wished only the best for her. Except for now. As she licked her ice cream, looking impossibly smug, I wondered for the millionth time how my bratty little sister managed to snag not one, but two men, when I hadn’t managed to land a second date in more months than I’d cared to admit.

It was fine and all if it were just Emmy having a baby, but I was one of six. All five of my siblings were married with kids, or in Emmy’s case, with a kid on the way. Two of my brothers were in Bridgewater marriages as well, but the rest had followed in my parents’ footsteps and gone the traditional route. One man, one woman. And everyone had found their “perfect someone” or “perfect someones” early. Emmy was only twenty-four and my brother, Zach, had married at twenty-one. My parents always used to say, “When you know, you know.”

Well, I’d yet to know.

Honest to God, I didn’t care what kind of relationship I found myself in—traditional, Bridgewater, or other—I just wanted to be in one. Not that I was desperate for a man. No, I didn’t sit around the house pining for one. Besides, I didn’t just want any man, I wanted the right man…or men. I dated, but so far there hadn’t been any spark, not anyone that I’d wanted to go out with past a second date. So I’d sort of given up. Not that I’d ever been on the prowl, but I wasn’t going to bars with my girlfriends on Friday nights looking for hook-ups. Well, I’d never gone looking for a hook-up, but I’d gone looking. And it hadn’t worked.

Because of this, I wasn’t exactly boy crazy, but I definitely was baby crazy. I wasn’t old, by any means, but I’d thought that by twenty-six I’d be in the same boat as the rest of my family. If not married with kids, at least well on my way. Heck, Emmy was having a baby before me. Yeah, that hurt, not that I’d ever tell her or let it show. It was my problem, not hers. It wasn’t her fault she found two guys who loved her and wanted to make a life with her. A family.

I’d had it all planned out. College, grad school, then start a family. Sure I was young, but I wanted a big brood and that meant starting early. But somehow, at some point, my life plan had gotten derailed. I stifled a sigh as I turned to watch the hottie cowboy pick up his hat from the dirt ring, lift it and wave it in air. The crowd cheered and clapped as he walked out through the open rail. Even the back of him looked damn good in the chaps and snug jeans. They were well worn and molded his butt just right.

Dammit. Emmy nudged me with her hip, caught me ogling again. “You should go back there. Introduce yourself.”

I looked at her as if she had suggested I climb on the back of the bull and go for a ride. “Introduce myself? To the bull rider? I couldn’t do that.”

Emmy glanced at me. We looked similar with our light brown hair and hazel eyes but she was several inches shorter. “Why not?”

I shrugged. Because I couldn’t. I wasn’t like Emmy. She had no problem going up to strange men and flirting—well, she hadn’t before she’d fallen for Rick and Kevin two years ago. They were alpha males through and through and they were the only men she flirted with now. The bowling ball beneath her shirt proved that.

But that wasn’t me. I’d never been great at flirting and super attractive men tended to make me nervous. No, I always turned into a stuttering idiot. The reason behind my single status wasn’t such a mystery after all.

“You’re intimidated, aren’t you?” Emmy continued. God, she was way too amused by my discomfort. Some things never changed.

“By that guy?” I pointed in the direction he’d gone. “Absolutely. You saw him. He’s…insanely hot. Of course, I’m intimidated.”

I didn’t bother denying it. We both knew I was the reserved one in our family. That was the way I put it. Emmy and my other sisters just called me a prude. What they didn’t know—what I’d never told them—was that my wariness around hot men, well, practically all men, wasn’t just because they intimidated me. It went deeper than that. I knew that if they got close, they’d want to get close. I’d had exactly one attempt at sex and it had been awful. Scary.

Back in college, there’d been a guy. A good guy…or so I’d thought. On our third date he’d assumed we’d be doing more than just kissing. He’d assumed wrong. I hadn’t been ready to take it to the next level, but he wouldn’t listen. His hands had been everywhere despite my protests and my feeble attempts to push him off me. He’d been too strong, too determined.

I shivered under the June sun. Thank god my roommate had come in when she had or who knows how far it would have gone. As it was, he’d groped and fondled but never managed to get my pants off. Still, the experience had left me with a bad taste in my mouth whenever dates started to get too close. I froze up. Panicked. My stomach still turned when I thought of how the jerk’s hands had felt on my skin and no matter how attracted I was to a guy, that was all I could think of whenever a man leaned in for a kiss.

Needless to say, intimacy was not exactly my strong suit.

I didn’t say any of that to Emmy, however. It wouldn’t have made a difference. Her mouth was set in a stubborn line.

“Go on, say hello,” she said. Her eyes were filled with a familiar mischievousness. The kind of look she used to give right before I walked into whatever booby-trap she’d laid for me in our shared bedroom.

“Why?” My eyes narrowed with suspicion. She wouldn’t just push me to flirt with any old guy. “Do you know him or something?”

“Or something.” She nodded, barely able to contain her laughter. “You will, too. He’s your new boss.”

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About the Author:
Vanessa Vale is the USA Today Bestselling author of over 30 books, sexy romance novels, including her popular Bridgewater historical romance series and hot contemporary romances featuring unapologetic bad boys who don’t just fall in love, they fall hard. When she’s not writing, Vanessa savors the insanity of raising two boys, is figuring out how many meals she can make with a pressure cooker, and teaches a pretty mean karate class. While she’s not as skilled at social media as her kids, she loves to interact with readers.
Connect with Vanessa!

Excerpt Reveal: Sacked in Seattle by Jami Davenport

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Are you ready to be SACKED?
Sacked in Seattle is an emotional romance that is about more than just sports!
Keep reading for an excerpt
Release Date: August 24th

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PREORDER NOW!
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He’s loved Tiff since high school–but tragedy has blockaded her heart.

Tyee University football player Riley Black has adored Tiff since high school, but she’s never felt the same way. As Riley enters his senior year of college, he’s finally moving on and enjoying the perks of being a star athlete. Until one glimpse of Tiff unearths all those old feelings of longing and desire, not to mention the trauma of their shared past.

Tiffani Vernon has been running from her demons for seven years. When she’s forced to return to Seattle for financial reasons and attend the same college as Riley, she’s confronted with the traumatic event which has shaped her future and scarred her memories of Riley. Tiff struggles to avoid her secret high school crush, but he’s not having any of it. He’s pursuing her with a relentless determination to prove once and for all, they were meant to be together.

Can love finally heal their wounds or will they succumb to the pain and forever wonder what could have been?

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EXCERPT:

Chapter 1—Running

* Riley *

Life-changing moments can be as obvious as a guy holding a gun to your forehead or as subtle as glimpsing a face in a crowd.

That gun and that face haunted my nights and often my days.

I hadn’t laid eyes on Tiffani Vernon since the night of our high school graduation over three years ago. She couldn’t leave Seattle fast enough, while I’d never considered going anywhere else. Seattle was the only real home I’d ever known, and I wanted to stay here and make things better. Face my fears head on. You know, crap like that.

Tiff ran from her fears, and our last night together had been epic, unforgettable, and scary as shit. She sped out of town and never looked back—especially not at me.

I knew why. It wasn’t personal, but that didn’t make me feel any better.

I reminded her of that horrible, awful day when our lives hung in the balance, the world shifted in a matter of minutes, and nothing would ever be the same again.

And there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it.

Except move on.

And I had.

Or I thought I had, until I saw her standing across that proverbial crowded room. Our eyes met. Her brown ones to my blue ones. Recognition flashed in her eyes, then panic. Her mouth opened as if she were going to say something. Her expression went soft with regret. Shaking her head, she turned and ran, weaving through the crowd faster than a running back angling for the end zone. Her little pink skirt swished back and forth, calling attention to her fine ass and shapely legs. She was so smoking hot, heads swiveled as she passed.

Pain stabbed deep in my gut. Memories flooded back and slammed me to the turf, leaving me stuck to the beer-soaked floor. Graduation night. Her skin glowed in the moonlight as she gave herself to me, body and soul. I lost myself inside her, certain we’d be together forever. She left town the next morning, and I never saw her again.

Squelching that memory, I stood alone in a crowd of people, hearing nothing, sensing nothing, seeing nothing but the place where she’d stood a second ago. People elbowed me in their haste to get to the keg of beer I was blocking.

I shook my head, attempting to clear it.

She couldn’t be here.

She should be at USC starting her senior year, just as I was starting mine at the Ty, what us locals call Tyee University on Lake Union in Seattle.

She’d traded the rain and mud for sun and sand, and she’d traded me for surfer dudes and Hollywood wannabes.

But now she was back.

My feet refused to follow my orders. All I could do was gape open-mouthed like some creep with a stalker crush. There’d been other times I’d sworn I’d seen her, only to race after her and embarrass the hell out of myself when I found out the poor girl I’d dogged wasn’t Tiffani.

But we’d locked gazes this time, and there wasn’t any doubt in my mind. She was here. I tried to swallow, clear my throat, gulp in some oxygen. I swear my organs were either shutting down or going into overload. My heart slammed in my chest as if building to detonation, and my head pounded to the beat of the music in the room.

Oblivious to my disinterest, the blonde who’d been hustling me all night leaned in closer and gripped my arm. She slipped her tongue in my ear while her hand migrated to my crotch. I gave her a gentle shove, not giving one shit how rude my behavior was, even though I usually prided myself on being a nice guy.

“Later,” I told her and pushed through the throng of frat-house party-goers.

Almost frantic, I shoved my way to where I’d last seen her and caught a flash of blonde hair as she slipped out the door. I dashed after her down the sidewalk into the street and glanced left and right. She was gone, vanished into thin air as if she’d never existed. I waited five, then ten minutes, she never reappeared.

With a sigh, I trudged back to the party, ignoring the curious stares of the guys. I sank onto the couch in the living room, next to a couple of teammates, and faked interest in a football game on TV. My heart thudded wildly, and my hand shook as I lifted a pizza slice to my lips.

My eyes met the concerned blue gaze of my best friend, Gage Harmon, the team quarterback, campus man slut, and proud of both titles. He was chewing slowly and staring at me as if he expected me to strip naked and dance on the table while stone-cold sober.

“You okay, Ry man?”

“Yeah, fine. Thought I saw someone. I was wrong.”

One brow crept upward, disappearing under his messy blond hair. “Female?”

I nodded, refusing to meet his gaze on the off-chance he’d see the pathetic truth and peg me for the idiot I was. What kind of loser pines after a girl this long when he has the world at his feet?

This loser.

Tiff was the only girl I’d ever truly loved.

And I’d never stopped loving her, as fucked up as that was.

* Tiff *

Running into Riley Black was inevitable. The Tyee campus was big, but obviously not big enough. Even so, I hadn’t expected to see him during my first week of classes. I’d carefully avoided the areas where he might be hanging out, such as Greek Row, and opted for an off-campus apartment. I planned my classes to avoid being near the football field and gym in the afternoons when he’d most likely be practicing. I timed everything with careful attention to detail and avoidance. Lot of good that did me.

Coming to this party had been a lapse in judgment. I should’ve known he’d be here. Maybe I secretly hoped to run into him, just to torture myself. Maybe I was all kinds of screwed up.

Okay, well, that’s stating the obvious. Ask my family. Ask my counselor. Ask my horse. They’d all agree. I, Tiffani Grace Vernon, was one fucked-up girl, and years of therapy had barely put a dent in my tormented past. Through no fault of his own, Riley brought back every traumatic memory of that fateful day when my charmed life became a living nightmare. He was a victim as much as I was.

Now, here we were. At the same frat party. I shouldn’t have come.

Our eyes met, and recognition instantly lit up his gaze. Those same cobalt blue eyes had studied me intently from across the room in our high school biology class. They’d watched me ride my horse in endless circles at the arena near his aunt’s house. Those same eyes had opened wide in horror as my ex-boyfriend, also his teammate, pointed a gun at each of us, aimed, and pulled the trigger. The loud bang had deafened me, and the smell of iron had filled my nostrils, followed by the wrenching pain of being slammed to the ground.

Oh God. Oh God. Oh God.

Seeing him brought it all back as if it had happened six minutes ago instead of almost seven years.

Maybe seeing me did the same for him, too? He’d gaped at me like he’d seen a ghost. Momentarily frozen in shock, his mouth opened and closed as if he were trying to say something but couldn’t. Not that I would have heard him over the sea of drunken partygoers and the roar in my ears.

My brain clawed at the last shred of sanity as wave after wave of dizziness sucked me deeper into a swirling abyss of darkness. My lungs begged for oxygen until I had to be blue in the face. My legs wobbled, and I stuck out a hand to steady myself. Swaying like a drunken sailor, I accidentally buried my fingers in some sorority girl’s cleavage. She raised her hand to take a swing at me but was too wasted to come close.

“You stupid, perverted bitch.”

Whatever. She was the least of my worries.

The music was so loud, no one paid attention to us. I wasn’t a fighter, and the time had come to get my ass out of here, not so much to run from her—I could handle her—but to get away from him and the demons nipping at my heels

I abandoned my beer on a windowsill and shoved my way through the crowd, desperate to exit as quickly as possible. Glancing over my shoulder, I saw Riley dodging people in the crowd with deft footwork that would do any running back proud. Only he wasn’t a running back. He was a tight end. The starting tight end for Tyee University. A big man on campus with an NHL star uncle.

And I was—

Nobody.

And I planned on keeping it that way. I didn’t have any interest in being in the spotlight or even in a flashlight.

It’d been a mistake to enroll here, but I hadn’t had a choice. My parents’ divorce had been costly, leaving no money for out-of-state tuition. So here was I was. Back in the area I both loved and despised among the best of memories drowned out by the worst of tragedies with the one person who played a part in both.

I ran out the door and down the front steps, knowing he was only seconds behind. Glancing around desperately, I dived into some bushes in front of the apartment building next to the frat house and huddled in the darkness.

I waited what seemed like hours.

Finally, I peeked through the branches of the bush. Riley stood there, several feet away, gazing down the street with such profound sadness, you’d think he’d lost his best friend. His big hands hung loosely at his sides. He still had that one lock of dark hard that refused to stay in place. He looked the same, but different. A familiar face, yet a stranger.

Shaking his head, Riley trudged back inside, his shoulders slumped and his feet dragging.

I almost ran after him—almost—but I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t invite the one person back into my life who could destroy every bit of progress I’d made since high school. Even worse, I couldn’t drag him down with me.

I waited long after he’d gone inside before creeping along the side of the building, and around the corner. I ran the several blocks home and collapsed on my bed. Only then did the wrenching sobs shake my body and wring every bit of emotion from my soul until nothing was left but bone-deep weariness.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

USA Today Bestselling Author Jami Davenport writes sexy contemporary, sports, and new adult romances, including her two new indie endeavors: the Game On in Seattle series and the Men of Tyee series. Jami lives on a small farm near Puget Sound with her Green Beret-turned-plumber husband, a Newfoundland dog with a tennis-ball fetish, and a prince disguised as an orange tabby cat. She works in computer support in her day job and juggles too many balls, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Connect with Jami!

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Preorder Blitz: The Secret by Christie Ridgway

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A single dad…a marriage of convenience…and so much love!
The Secret by Christie Ridgway is coming soon on August 15th!

The Secret - Ebook

Amazon → http://amzn.to/2tNV5Fj
iBooks → https://goo.gl/ob7gHH
Nook → http://bit.ly/2uH7Vtw
Kobo → http://bit.ly/2uQp3NV

Attractive couple cuddling at the beach


Being butler to a widower and single father is a dream job in more ways than one for Charlotte “Charlie” Emerson. She helps keep businessman Ethan Archer’s household running without a hitch and enjoys every minute she has with his six-year-old son, Wells. But as time passes, the situation feels alarmingly intimate and when her heart starts beating faster each time Ethan steps through the door, Charlie must exert rigid control over her feelings.

With her secret, falling in love would be all kinds of bad…

Ethan Archer values the woman who keeps his life in order and cares so much for his motherless boy. He and Charlie act in harmony with each other and it’s not hard to picture them as a little family…in fact, it’s so easy, one reckless night he proposes a marriage of convenience.
What will he do if Charlie says yes? And worse, what if she tells him no?

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About the Author:

Christie Ridgway is a California native and author of over forty-five contemporary romances. A six-time RITA finalist and USA Today bestselling author, she writes sexy, emotional reads starring determined heroines and the men who can’t help but love them. She has a Career Achievement award from RT Book Reviews and twice has received their Reviewer’s Choice award for best contemporary romance of the year. Married to her college sweetheart, Christie lives in Southern California in a house filled with boys and pets. She writes as an escape from sports equipment, football on TV, and dog hair.
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