Review – Weight Expectations by M.E. Carter

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Hilarious, engaging and relatable, I started laughing out loud from the first page” — Kristin Vayden, bestselling author

Weight Expectations, the first in the romantic comedy Cipher Office series of standalones, from M.E. Carter is available now!

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Rian Thompson thought she joined the gym to get healthy. Little did she know she was about to add hundred and ninety pounds of swoonworthy abdominal muscles and arrogance to her life.

Every day in Rians’s life follows a predictable pattern, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. She’s got a nice job, a nice place to live, and a nice family—even if they are a little wedding-zilla-ish at the moment.

She doesn’t need anything spectacular to be happy. She just needs to get healthy—mentally, physically. . . and maybe spiritually if that happens. But she’ll settle for two out of three until her sister finally gets hitched.

Carlos Davies thought his life was perfect. Little did he know it was about to be turned upside down by a woman who is not his type.

In Carlos’s mind, his life is damn near perfect. He’s got a great job, a great place to live, and a great stash of pick up lines that always work. It has occurred to him that maybe no one actually takes him all that seriously. But with these bulging biceps and thick, dark hair, does that even matter since he’s never sleeping alone?

Welcome to Weight Expectations, where great—and unexpected—things happen.

‘Weight Expectations’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book#1 in the Cipher Office series, Knitting in the City World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

 

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Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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BFF K’s Review of Weight Expectations

There are few storylines that I like better than a cocky hero who gets knocked on his a$$. And Carlos Davies is about to get his world rocked when he least expects it!

We can be honest…..at the beginning of this book, Carlos is…. an a$$hole. He’s cocky, self-absorbed and really really regimented about his fitness and lifestyle. Rian is not. She’s none of those things. She’s snarky, funny, sweet, smart and kind. And, she thinks, that Carlos thinks, he’s pretty darn special. And, she’s not wrong.

When Rian joins a new gym (Weight Expectations) she’s not so thrilled about the exercise, but she is ecstatic about meeting some new friends. She’s quickly taken under the wings of Abel (her trainer), Tabitha (the smoothie bar-ista) and Fred (resident geriatric hot-shot). This new group of friends helps her to expand her outlook on life. She recognizes the areas of personal growth she wants to embrace beyond the gym. And she creates for herself, the mindset to make those changes happen. This is a wonderful transformation, even if her plus size figure stays on the plus side.

Carlos is a pillar of health. He has a staunch regimen that he follows religiously. This is NOT the guy who skips leg day, or ab day or arm day. He eats clean. And his personal life is pretty darn clean as well. It’s stark and void of much color or personality. He works hard and plays pretty much never.

While they may seem like the most opposite of personalities, they find in each other a comfortable and comforting partnership. One where they each smooth the other’s rough edges and they support each other’s personal growth. It’s a delightful transition and makes the book a joyful, uplifting read. And it’s also wickedly funny!

Weight Expectations exceeded my expectations. I loved both Rian and Carlos and their unique and entertaining love story! This is another great installment in the new Smartypants Romance Universe!

 

An advance copy of this book was received from the author. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

About the Author

My name is ME Carter and I have no idea how I ended writing books. I’m more of a story teller (the more exaggerated the better) and I happen to know people who helped me get those stories on paper. I love reading (read almost 200 books last year), hate working out (but I do it anyway because my trainer makes me), love food (but hate what it does to my butt) and love traveling to non-touristy places most people never see. I live in Houston with my four kids, Mary, Elizabeth, Carter and Bug, who was just a twinkle in my eye when I came up with my pen name. Yeah, I’ll probably have to pay for his therapy someday for being left out.

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Connect with Smartypants Romance

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Review – Beard with Me by Penny Reid

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“This is Penny Reid at her finest.” — L.B. Dunbar, author

Beard With Me, an epic and breathtaking story from New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Penny Reid, is available now!

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No one is better at surviving than Scarlet St. Claire and making the best out of circumstances beyond her control is Scarlet’s specialty. In an apocalyptic situation, she’d be the last person on earth, hermitting like a pro, singing along to her CD Walkman, and dancing like no one is watching.

Scarlet is clever, Scarlet is careful, and Scarlet is smart . . . except when it comes to Billy Winston.

No one is better at fighting than Billy Winston and raging against his circumstances—because nothing is beyond his control—is Billy’s specialty. In an apocalyptic situation, he’d be the first person on earth to lead others to safety, overcome catastrophe, or die trying.

Billy is fearless, Billy is disciplined, and Billy is honorable . . . except when it comes to Scarlet St. Claire.

‘Beard With Me’ is the origin story of Billy Winston and Scarlet St. Claire (aka Claire McClure) and is just the beginning of their epic love story.

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Enter the giveaway for a signed paperback set of The Winston Brothers Series!

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BFF K’s Review of Beard with Me

I don’t mean to skip ahead but….Beard Necessities is the title of the next (and final) book in the Winston Brothers Series. And, I don’t think there’s ever been a more appropriate title. After reading Beard with Me, I’m in desperate need of the next book. Now! Stat! Please put me out of my heart-broken misery!!! 💔

I’ve been waiting the entire series to know and understand Billy Winston. And, the backstory is even more endearing and tragic than I imagined. Billy and Scarlet are star-crossed lovers for sure. Beard with Me is the beginning of their relationship and explains all the ins and outs of their broken journey.

Bill Winston has always struck me as being wiser than his years and carrying more responsibility than someone his age and all of his siblings. I had NO idea. My intuition didn’t even scratch the surface of what was really happening in his life, his heart and his brain. And, if Billy is an old soul, then he’s a perfect match for Scarlet. This book is a tale of young love, misunderstanding, and sacrifice that exceeds maturity.

This story was at times hard to read due to the gut-wrenching challenges and vulnerabilities that the characters displayed, but it was such a glimpse into what circumstances built the Winston family. And, it was the perfect story I didn’t know I needed in the series.

All of the praise for this angst-filled, tear-jerker aside, I don’t remember the last time I was this anxious to end a cliffhanger and put a beautiful bow on the Winston Brothers Series!

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

Excerpt from Beard with Me

*Scarlet*

“Do you want me to leave?”

Yes. That would be best, a wise voice said between my ears.

So of course I inhaled deeply and said as calmly as I could manage, “I thought we were going to go get firewood.”

“Okay. Good.”

“But then,” I blurted, flustered and irritated with myself for not speaking wisdom, “You should go. You can’t tell me carting firewood back and forth between your house and here is how you want to spend the last of your Thanksgiving weekend.”

“I didn’t say it was.” He began making his way up the incline.

“But you just said—”

“How about we make a deal.” Billy dropped the kindling next to my little woodpile, dusting his hands off on his pants. “I’ll cart the firewood, and you sing.”

“You want me to serenade you while we carry firewood?”

He smiled, slow and easy as he walked to me and reached out his hand. On autopilot, I accepted it and allowed him to help me up.

As soon as I was standing, his gaze moved from my hairline down to my nose, lips, and then chin, saying quietly, “I’ll take a serenade from you anytime.”

Thunk ka-thunk. That was my heart. It had been doing the thunk ka-thunk quite a lot around him. I ignored it, because what else could I do?

“And you’re not carrying the wood.” He tugged on my hand, pulling me out of my daze and past my tent.

“I will too carry wood.” Struggling to find my bearings, I stumbled after him. “I can carry logs just fine.”

“You’ll carry a log.” Billy fit his fingers between mine, pressing our palms together and grinning at me like he was waiting for me to argue and he couldn’t wait.

Snapping my mouth shut, I glared at him.

“Nothing to say?”

Maintaining my glare, I walked next to him. I wasn’t being led anywhere I didn’t wish to go. Not anymore. He wasn’t talking me into anything else.

“That’s an awfully mean look, Scarlet.” His grin grew, his brutally attractive eyes glowing happily as he peered down at me.

“Well, you deserve it. Always trying to tell me what I can and can’t do. I’m not arguing with you about this. I’m carrying as much wood as I want and you can take your stupid, chauvinistic opinions and shove them up your pretty-boy ass.”

Goodness. Where had that come from?

Billy’s steps faltered and his mouth fell open, his eyebrows rising high on his forehead. He stared at me, looking shocked as hell. And then in the next moment, he threw his head back and laughed. But he did not let go of me, instead bringing my knuckles to his chest as his deep, rumbly laughter filled the empty spaces between the trees, surrounding us.

Crushing me.

Yes. I was well and truly crushed as I could only watch Billy Winston laugh, desperately basking in the image of him so delighted and relaxed. I had the odd sense that his laughter also filled the empty spaces inside of me, the neglected, vacant rooms, and even a few places that felt brand-new, like he’d created them.

All that noble honesty he carried around like a boulder abruptly lifted, revealing him. Just him. Carefree and young and happy. Someone he might’ve been if his burdens hadn’t been so heavy, his responsibilities so broad.

It lasted only a minute, maybe two, maybe less, but I had the sense of being caught afterward. Billy’s laughter had receded, but he’d spun a web while I’d been staring at him, holding his hand.

His grin became smaller and he bit his bottom lip, his gaze dropped to my mouth. “You think I’m pretty?”

“You know you’re pretty,” I said, bizarrely out of breath, rattled, needing to anchor my focus to a tree beyond him and waging war against the heat climbing up my neck to my cheeks. Oddly, my eyes stung. I blinked.

His attention was still on me. I felt it, but I didn’t dare look at him. I couldn’t handle one of Billy Winston’s intense stares right now. He’d probably use my scattered wits to his advantage, talk me into something I shouldn’t want to do, and then I’d be kicking myself later.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, his voice deep with concern, all trace of his earlier humor gone.

I huffed, trying half-heartedly to steal my hand back from him. He didn’t let it go, instead taking my tugging as a signal to step closer, filling my vision.

“Scarlet—”

“Are you ever going to teach me how to play the guitar?” I closed my eyes.

He didn’t answer right away, and I felt him hesitate, his mind work before he muttered, “It’s only been a week.”

A quality to his voice made me think he wasn’t answering the question I’d asked, but rather he was reminding himself that it had only been a week since we’d struck the deal.

Was that only last week? Why does it feel like so much has changed?

Then he said, “Don’t be angry.”

“I’m not angry.” I was muddled, my head and heart hurt, I was incredibly confused, but I wasn’t angry.

The air shifted and I felt him move closer. A second later, the fingers of his free hand were at my ear, tucking my hair behind it, his fingertips lingering at my neck, sending wave after wave of goose bumps every which way. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t swallow. I couldn’t think. Every nerve in my body strained toward him and I didn’t understand it. What is happening?

“Have you ever been kissed, Scarlet?”

 

About the Author

Penny Reid is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Best Selling Author of the Winston Brothers, Knitting in the City, Rugby, and Hypothesis series. She used to spend her days writing federal grant proposals as a biomedical researcher, but now she just writes books. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.

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Connect with Penny:

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www.pennyreid.ninja

 

Review – On the Corner of Love and Hate by Nina Bocci

 

For fans of Lauren Layne and Kristan Higgins comes a delightfully “fun bit of fluffy entertainment” (Publishers Weekly) in the first book of a charming new series, in which a young woman is forced to help her old friend revamp his image for the upcoming mayoral elections…and discovers that she might not be as immune to his charms as she once thought.

When Emmanuelle Peroni’s father—and current mayor of Hope Lake, Pennsylvania—suggests she help with Cooper Endicott’s campaign, she’s horrified. Cooper, one of her (former) oldest friends, drives her crazy in every way possible. But he’s also her father’s protégé, so Emma reluctantly launches her plan to help him win the local election.

It’s not as easy as it looks. Cooper’s colorful love life is the sticking point for many voters, and his opponent is digging up everything he can from his past. It seems that every time Emma puts out the flames from one scandal, another one flares up. Emma knows that if Cooper wants to win, he needs to keep his nose clean. The only problem? She might just be falling in love with the one person she promised never to pursue: the mayoral candidate himself.

 

BUY On the Corner of Love and Hate on Amazon

 

BFF K’s Review – On the Corner of Love and Hate

I’ve been in a serious funk! You know, the kind of funk where you start book after book and can’t finish any of them. The funk where it takes you hours and days to get into a book. I can bust out audiobook after audiobook, because HELLO captive audience on the Interstate. But, I haven’t been able to finish a read book in ages, until On the Corner of Love and Hate by Nina Bocci! This book broke my funk and I couldn’t be more thankful! I was up until almost 2am to finish the story and then went to bed and read 2 chapters in a new story. My funk has ended, hallelujah!

On the Corner of Love and Hate is a sweet story full of tension, romance and so many butterflies. It’s a delightful small-town romance with an engaging cast of characters that draws you in and makes you want to be a part Hope Lake! This story is completely charming and a joy to read!

The banter between the characters and the internal dialogue are both stellar and keep the book moving at a great pace especially from 20% through the end of the book. I’m a bit of a policy/politics nerd and a rule follower. There were a couple of details that bothered me a bit. In “real life,” a few of the circumstances would not have really happened. For instance, the heroine of the story works for a Chamber of Commerce/Economic Development type agency and her dad is the Mayor. That probably wouldn’t happen in real life. I had to let a few of those details go, but I didn’t really mind because I was enjoying the story and the characters so much!

If you’re looking for a wonderful, heart-warming romance filled with lovable characters and a sweet plots, you definitely need to place On the Corner of Love and Hate at the top of your to be read list!

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

About the Author

 

 

Nina Bocci is a USA Today Bestselling novelist, publicist, eternal optimist, unabashed lipgloss enthusiast, constant apologist and a hopeless romanticist. She has too many college degrees that she’s not using and a Lego addiction that she blames on her son.

Review – Rogue Wave by J Bengtsson

We are so excited to be sharing the release of ROGUE WAVE, the next standalone in J. Bengtsson’s beloved Cake series. Be sure to grab your copy today or read it for free with Kindle Unlimited!

 

About ROGUE WAVE

A love story that survives the test of time.

Keith McKallister is the king of the stoners. You know the type. Every school has one – the hot, fun, dopey guy beloved by the student body but despised by, well, just about everyone else. He spends his early mornings in the ocean and his days trying to get to class on time. Life is as easy as it gets until one poor choice too many catches up with him and he’s forced to reevaluate his path.

Samantha Anderson sits in the front row. You know the type. Every school has one – the quiet, faceless, studious girl who fears the taunts of her peers and fades into the background. Life has never been simple for Samantha, and it’s about to get a little more complicated when Keith slides into the seat beside her with a partnership plan designed for his benefit only. But what Keith brings to the table is more than either of them could imagine.

Sometimes the person you least expect to make a difference will change your life forever. Sometimes the person you love the most might be better off without you.

Add ROGUE WAVE to your Goodreads TBR!

Get your copy of ROGUE WAVE on Amazon today!

 

 

BFF K’s Review of Rogue Wave

 

Finally! I finally have the answers to the mystery of Keith McAllister. Since Book 1 – Cake: A Love Story, I’ve been drawn to Keith. He seemed like such a wonderful and somewhat tortured soul. I have craved his backstory. The previous stories in this series briefly touched on his substance abuse, but it just felt like there was so much beneath the surface. And, the full story was everything I had hoped for and more!

It’s really hard to pick a favorite McAllister. They’re all so fantastic for their own reasons. But, Keith….Keith will hold a special place in my heart. He’s battered but keeps reviving himself in ways that are so genuine and heartening. He’s like a piece of Kintsugi pottery, the way his broken pieces are fused back together makes him even more beautiful than before. And, I think Sam is the gold that holds it all together. She’s lovely on her own, but combined with Keith they make a piece that is more perfect than either were alone. (Wow, super cheesy analogy, but it seems so perfect!)

J Bengtsson just continues to outdo herself. Each book in this series is more emotional and more perfect than the one before. I want the McAllister family to exist in real life and I want to be a part of it! I don’t think it’s too much to ask to be a slightly distant cousin or really close family friend….I just want to live in the middle of this crazy, funny, loving, supportive, wonderful family! At least each story gives me a spot in their world from beginning to end and book to book. You won’t need to read the rest of the series to fall in love with Keith and Sam, but why wouldn’t you want to?!?! Rogue Wave continues this fantastic series and the stories just keep getting better and better!

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 


Get your copy of ROGUE WAVE on Amazon today!

 

About the Author

A professional stay-at-home-mom for twenty-one years, Jill started her writing career in 2016 after reading a really bad rockstar romance. Although she had no previous writing experience and no desire to become an author, Jill was convinced she could write a better story.

And so began Cake: A Love Story. She wrote the novel for fun and added every single thing she’d ever wanted to read in a romance. Embarrassed by her newfound hobby, Jill kept her writing a secret from her family.

When the story was complete, she turned to Amazon to get the feedback she desired. Not thinking the book would ever sell, Jill planned to pull Cake off Amazon once it got a review or two but that never happened because, within a week of its release, Cake began to soar up the bestseller charts. Not only was Jill shocked by Cake’s success but now she had a whole new burgeoning career on her hands…and some explaining to do. Needless to say, the news of Jill’s secret book bay came as a complete shock to her husband and three children.

Jill is now a full-time writer.

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Review – Space by Penny Reid – Laws of Physics 2

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Space, the second book in the all-new Laws of Physics Trilogy from Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestselling author Penny Reid, is available now!

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One week.

Private cabin.

Famous physicist.

Still an unrepentant slacker.

What’s the worst that could happen?

Mona’s meticulously planned allotment of relaxation is thrown into chaos by the unscheduled appearance of her older brother’s band of friends, including the one person she’d hoped to never face again. Abram still makes her feel entirely too much, which is one of the reasons she disappeared after their one week together. But now, trapped on a mountain of snow and things unspoken, Mona will have to find a way to coexist with Abram, chaos and all.

Laws of Physics is the second trilogy in the Hypothesis series; Laws of Physics parts 1 (MOTION) & 2 (SPACE) end with a cliffhanger.

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Download your copy today!

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BFF K’s Review of Space – Laws of Physics Part 2

 

One of the things that I miss in romance books is the simple, pre-technology plot lines of misunderstanding and miscommunication. You know, that 80’s-style – missed phone calls, no idea where someone is, can’t get in touch, assume the worst, stuff like that. And this modern age of cell phones, Facebook, Snapchat, etc. it is harder and harder to pull off miscommunication/misunderstanding storylines. The continuation of Laws of Physics feels like a very modern and completely understandable version of those comfortable, enjoyable, and effective plot lines.
Mona thinks she and her sister, Lisa, have gotten away with the identical-twin-life switch-thing. But there is no sense of victory or accomplishment because Mona has lost Abram in the process. The bulk of Space takes place 2-1/2 years after motion.
Mona arrives at her family’s mountain mansion for what she is planning to be a quiet, peaceful weekend with her best friend. But, she is rocked to discover that, unbeknownst to her, her brother Leo and a pack of friends have taken up residence as well… Including Abram!
Abram has a scheme to either completely ignore or find a way to get even with Mona. But, his initial plans are scattered and discarded once he sees her again. What ensues is a modern day cat and mouse game where the main characters are trying to both run from one another and to one another at the same time. It’s entertaining and emotional at the same time.
This book is so beautifully written! I don’t remember making this many highlights in a book in a long time. Abram is absolutely swoony! And I adore Mona and all of her quirks and inner monologue.
I don’t want to give away any more of the plot so I won’t go into the meat of the story or the ending let you know that it is all fantastic despite another cliffhanger ending! I am so excited for the third and final installment of Laws of physics. Penny Reid has outdone herself once again!

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 

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Excerpt from Space, Laws of Physics Part 2

“Hi—hello,” she said, stepping forward but not out of the way, drawing my attention.

She was still staring at me, her face still pale, but her eyes had turned searching instead of stunned.

“I—” She stopped herself, swallowing, her gaze dropping to the front of my coat, a cute little frown furrowing her eyebrows. In the next moment, she was pulling off the glove of her right hand. Abruptly, she shoved the ungloved fingers toward me, returning her eyes to mine. “I’m Mona.”

I suppressed my disbelief at her small action before it could break my outward mask of calm. I wasn’t calm. Just to be clear, I was the opposite of calm.

The fact that she was introducing herself to me now meant that she thought I was too stupid to figure out her lies over the last two-and-a-half-fucking years. She was arguably one of the smartest people in the world, after all. To her, people like me must seem like housebroken pets. So it shouldn’t have surprised me. But it did. The tension and tightness around my ribs reappeared, squeezing uncomfortably.

Dropping my attention to her bare hand, I pressed my lips into a tighter line, dismissing the way my pulse jumped at the sight of her wrist, the olive tone of her skin under the yellow string lights overhead. Glaring at her outstretched offering, I considered telling her to go to hell.

I considered it, but I wouldn’t.

I didn’t trust myself to speak, that was reason number one.

The other reason was harder to explain, or use as a justification, or admit to myself. Staring at her hand, I braced against a sudden flare of hunger. She might consider me a lower life-form, but that didn’t change the fact that I wanted to touch her. I wanted to touch her more than I wanted to tell her to go to hell, and that was fucking pitiful.

But there it was.

Acting on the compulsion, I lifted my right hand and tugged off the ski glove, sliding my warm palm against her much colder one. Her hand felt good in my hand, the right weight, the right size, the right texture, and I inhaled freezing air.

Mona also seemed to suck in a slow but expansive breath as our hands touched, held. This brought my eyes back to hers in time to see her lashes flutter. Pink colored her previously pale cheeks. The sound of the wailing wind, the sting of the air and frost momentarily melted away, leaving just her, her soft skin warming against mine, her beautiful face filling my vision.

So beautiful.

She really was. She was stunning. I hated that she was still so beautiful to me.

Start the series today!

Motion

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Add to GoodReads

Pre-order the highly anticipated conclusion today!

Time

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Amazon Worldwide

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About the Author

Penny Reid is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Best Selling Author of the Winston Brothers, Knitting in the City, Rugby, and Hypothesis series. She used to spend her days writing federal grant proposals as a biomedical researcher, but now she just writes books. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.

 

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www.pennyreid.ninja

 

Review – The Day I Stopped Falling for Jerks by Max Monroe

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Everyone calls me Lucky, but when it comes to love, I’m anything but.

The Day I Stopped Falling for Jerks, the first in the fun and flirty Jerk Duet from New York Times bestselling author Max Monroe is LIVE!

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I have a long history of dating the wrong men.

You know the ones I’m talking about.

The beautiful, charming guys who are quite literally too good to be true.

The ones who are impulsive in love and prefer short flings over long-term relationships.

I’m talking about the jerks.

The guys who taste so good, but are so very bad.

After going through the most ridiculous breakup in the history of breakups, I thought I’d learned my lesson. I officially put myself into jerk rehab and committed to changing my ways.

But, let’s be real here, love is never that easy.

Especially when an arrogant, charming, he-devil of a sexy alpha man gets involved.

Aussie accent.

Tanned skin.

Muscular, surfer bod.

Gorgeous brown eyes.

And the kind of sexy smile that brings women to their knees.

Oh, did I mention that he’s also my best friend’s brother?

Yeah. This story, my story, it’s a real doozy you guys.

The day I stopped falling for jerks, I met Oliver Arsen—the biggest jerk of all.

 

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BFF K’s Review for The Day I Stopped Falling for Jerks

 

I have listened to a TON of Max Monroe books this year and I love this writing duo’s great characters and clever stories. They’re usually super swoony and lol-funny. I was excited about the premise of this duet. And for the most part, I really liked the story and the characters.

Lucky is plucky. (Sorry, I didn’t mean to rhyme.) She’s hard-working and determined. But, unlucky in love. She takes a work trip that really begins to look a little like an early mid-life crisis/exploration of self-discovery. I think I really like Ollie as a character, but the one-sided delivery of the story only from Lucky’s point of view makes it hard to know for sure.

Here’s my issue and the things I didn’t like. The book is set up to be delivered like a podcast. And, honestly, I don’t know why. I was so distracted by the fact that the way a great author builds scenes is by adding details, but those details are very seldom things that you would actually say out loud. So, it just seemed awkward to think of this as a podcast. And, don’t even get me started on the sex scene. They tried to address it head on, but I was bothered by an explicit description of intimate sex by one of the participants in a pod cast. It just didn’t seem to fit with the story or Lucky’s character.

Lucky writes a series of Dear Ex-Boyfriend letters that really move the plot along and help with her character development. I love them and I feel like they would have been plot device enough without the podcast. Combine those two issues with the exotic travel and there was just a little too much going on.

Even with the things that bothered me about the story, I’m still invested in the characters. I want to know what happens next and I will definitely be buying book #2 in this duet. I’m hoping for a little more humor and a little less angst from Ollie’s perspective when it releases tomorrow. And, I will be one-clicking it now so it arrives soon!

I’m anxious to know how the story ends and I think that’s the highest praise I can give to a two-part story! Bring on the hunky Aussie bloke!

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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Preorder The Day the Jerk Started Falling today!

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About the Author

A secret duo of romance authors team up under the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling pseudonym Max Monroe to bring you sexy, laugh-out-loud reads.

Max Monroe is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of more than ten contemporary romance titles. Favorite writing partners and long time friends, Max and Monroe strive to live and write all the fun, sexy swoon so often missing from their Facebook newsfeed. Sarcastic by nature, their two writing souls feel like they’ve found their other half. This is their most favorite adventure thus far.

Connect with Max Monroe

Website: https://www.authormaxmonroe.com/

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Review – Guilty as Sin by Meghan March

 

 

Guilty until proven innocent.

That’s the way the world works, right?

I’m tired of being convicted without evidence, all because my last name is Gable.

The Riscoffs might own this town, but I’m done following their rules.

If only I could forget just how easily Lincoln Riscoff can drag me under his spell.

 

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BFF K’s Review of Guilty As Sin

 

Guilty As Sin picks up right where we left off in Richer Than Sin! And it just keeps building. There’s so much stress and tension with Lincoln and Whitney it will leave you feeling all kinds of wound up and oh so ready for the final book in the series.

Guilty As Sin continues the tumultuous relationship between Whitney and Lincoln. The story is told in alternating bits between the past and the present so that readers can clearly draw history and future conclusions from both times. It’s clear to see all of the reasons they’ve been apart and all of the reasons they are desperately drawn back together.

But, there is so much standing in their way. The body count around this relationship just keeps climbing. Whether they’ve directly impacted the death toll or not remains to be seen. But either way, they’re just adding logs to the fire that threatens to burn this relationship to the ground.

I’m going to be anxiously awaiting Reveling in Sin to see just how this soap opera-esque drama ends!

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 

 

 

 

The other books in this Sin trilogy…

From New York Times bestselling author Meghan March comes a brand new saga of forbidden love and second chances.

A Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after. Our family feud is the stuff of legends.

Ten years ago, Whitney Gable caught me off guard with her long legs and grab-you-by-the-balls blue eyes.

I didn’t know or care what her name was.

Like any Riscoff worth the family name, I went after what I wanted. We burned like a flash fire until she married another man.

She hates me, and she should.

I objected on her wedding day.

Now she’s home, with those same long legs and man-eater stare, but there’s no ring on her finger.

They say a Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after . . . but I’m not done with Whitney Gable.

I’ll never be done with her.

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Whitney Gable is the kind of woman you fight to the death to protect.

To keep.

To cherish.

I’ve finally learned my lesson, and it’s time to prove I’m the man who’s worthy of her.

I don’t care what it takes, because failure is not an option.

No matter who or what stands in our way—this time, she’ll be mine forever

iBooks | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Kobo | BN

 

 

 

 

 

About the Author

A New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty novels, Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. She’s also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she’s ever had.

Sign up for Meghan’s newsletter and receive exclusive content that she saves for her subscribers: http://meghanmarch.com/subscribe

To get the inside scoop on a daily basis, search Meghan March’s Runaway Readers on Facebook and join the fun.

FACEBOOK | WEBSITE | INSTAGRAM | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE | TWITTER | PINTER

 

 

 

Review – A Love Letter from the Girls Who Feel Everything by Brittainy C. Cherry & Kandi Steiner

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“A Love Letter From the Girls Who Feel Everything reminds me of my favorite roller coaster . . . it was such an emotional ride—one I’m willingly going to take over and over again.”

– Dee Lagasse, author

A Love Letter From the Girls Who Feel Everything, a beautiful book of prose and poetry, by bestselling authors Brittainy C. Cherry & Kandi Steiner is LIVE!

 

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Bestselling authors Brittainy C. Cherry and Kandi Steiner come together for the first time in an emotional compilation of poetry and prose. Written and collected over the course of more than two years, A Love Letter from the Girls Who Feel Everything is an intimate, honest, and raw assemblage of two women’s feelings in a modern world that often quiets any kind of emotion past indifference.

Discussing themes of love, worth, loss and hope, A Love Letter from the Girls Who Feel Everything is a journey of discovery and healing.

“We are the girls who feel everything.

And this is our love letter. To you, to them, to us, to the world, to no one at all. Whether it’s the brightest, sunniest day where everything is perfect, or the darkest, dreariest night of rain where life seems unbearable — we have lived it, we have survived it, and we have felt every, blissful, aching second.

Here’s to embracing the feels, to the brave souls that listen to the way their hearts beat and aren’t afraid to ask someone else if they feel those same beats, too. Here’s to the girls, the boys, the love we sometimes share and the love we all-too-often conceal.

And more than anything, Reader — here’s to you.”

 

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Download your copy today!

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BFF K’s Review of A Love Letter from the Girls Who Feel Everything

 

When I was in High School, my Speech and Debate Coach forced me to compete in Oral Interpretation of Poetry. I’ve had a love/hate relationship with poetry ever since. In recent years I’ve found myself seeking out poetry and developing an adult’s appreciation for this literary format. I was looking forward to A Love Letter from the Girls Who Feel Everything and I wasn’t disappointed.

Cherry and Steiner have delivered an emotional, raw, gut-punch in pure poetic prose. There are a couple of more up-beat, optimistic pieces, but the vast majority are intense introspections on life and relationships. They reflect incredible self discovery, healthy and unhealthy relationships and most of all loss and love.

I started highlighting my favorites, but it soon became apparent that by doing so I would end up highlighting most of the book!

I think that poetry is a terrific palate cleanser when you’re switching genre’s or tropes. And this set would be perfect before or after an angsty read. Either way, it will get you ready and pointed in a new direction. I know that I will come back to A Love Letter many many more times and I’m sure you will too!

I haven’t received too many love letters in my life, but this is definitely a love letter from Cherry and Steiner to themselves and their readers and I’m grateful to have been on the receiving end of this book!

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

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About the Authors

Brittainy C. Cherry:

Hi! I’m Brittainy! Join me as we travel through my mind as a Romance Author. This includes such things as my random thoughts, tricks, tips, things I’m learning, things I’m re-learning, things I’m forgetting, and my weird ways of crafting stories.

Connect with Brittainy:

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2oIoDEb
Twitter: http://bit.ly/2Cnk2kr
Stay up to date with Brittainy by signing up for her mailing list: https://goo.gl/VOg4l8
Website: http://bit.ly/2NR6y1w

Kandi Steiner:

Kandi Steiner is a bestselling author and whiskey connoisseur living in Tampa, FL. Best known for writing “emotional rollercoaster” stories, she loves bringing flawed characters to life and writing about real, raw romance — in all its forms. No two Kandi Steiner books are the same, and if you’re a lover of angsty, emotional, and inspirational reads, she’s your gal.

An alumna of the University of Central Florida, Kandi graduated with a double major in Creative Writing and Advertising/PR with a minor in Women’s Studies. She started writing back in the 4th grade after reading the first Harry Potter installment. In 6th grade, she wrote and edited her own newspaper and distributed to her classmates. Eventually, the principal caught on and the newspaper was quickly halted, though Kandi tried fighting for her “freedom of press.” She took particular interest in writing romance after college, as she has always been a diehard hopeless romantic, and likes to highlight all the challenges of love as well as the triumphs.

When Kandi isn’t writing, you can find her reading books of all kinds, talking with her extremely vocal cat, and spending time with her friends and family. She enjoys live music, traveling, anything heavy in carbs, beach days, movie marathons, craft beer and sweet wine — not necessarily in that order.

Connect with Kandi:

Mailing list: http://bit.ly/NewsletterKS
Facebook: http://bit.ly/2Q5lWJc
Facebook reader group (Kandiland): http://bit.ly/2wKSDnq
Instagram: http://bit.ly/2MMBuUm
Twitter: http://bit.ly/2LZqEVH
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Website: http://bit.ly/2M2Mho0

 

 

 

Review – Richer Than Sin by Meghan March

 

From New York Times bestselling author Meghan March comes a brand new saga of forbidden love and second chances.

 

A Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after. Our family feud is the stuff of legends.

Ten years ago, Whitney Gable caught me off guard with her long legs and grab-you-by-the-balls blue eyes.

I didn’t know or care what her name was.

Like any Riscoff worth the family name, I went after what I wanted. We burned like a flash fire until she married another man.

She hates me, and she should.

I objected on her wedding day.

Now she’s home, with those same long legs and man-eater stare, but there’s no ring on her finger.

They say a Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after . . . but I’m not done with Whitney Gable.

I’ll never be done with her.

 

 

AVAILABLE NOW

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BFF K’s Review of Richer Than Sin

Richer Than Sin is just the kind of story I expect from Meghan March. It’s interesting, steamy and full of romance! I enjoyed the audiobook version, you can’t go wrong with the narration of Joe Arden and Erin Mallon.

The story vacillates back and forth between the past and the present. You get an idea of just what brought Whitney Gable and Lincoln Riscoff together and you understand that they badly want to reconnect with one another. But there are still so so so many unanswered questions. With a crazy cliffhanger, you’ll be anxious to know what comes next!

I wish that the characters had been a little more well developed. I like Whitney and Lincoln, but I’m not yet sure why they are so desperately drawn to each other. The wonderful way that Meghan March weaves stories together will bring me back to discover all of those reasons! This is a modern twist on the Romeo and Juliet trope, with a little taste of your favorite soap opera drama sprinkled in. I’m just counting down the days until the next episode!

An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 

 

 

Pre-Order the rest of the series, coming soon!

 

Guilty until proven innocent.

That’s the way the world works, right?

I’m tired of being convicted without evidence, all because my last name is Gable.

The Riscoffs might own this town, but I’m done following their rules.

If only I could forget just how easily Lincoln Riscoff can drag me under his spell.

iBooks | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | Kobo | BN

 

 

Whitney Gable is the kind of woman you fight to the death to protect.

To keep.

To cherish.

I’ve finally learned my lesson, and it’s time to prove I’m the man who’s worthy of her.

I don’t care what it takes, because failure is not an option.

No matter who or what stands in our way—this time, she’ll be mine forever

iBooks | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Kobo | BN

 

 

 

 

 

About the Author

A New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty novels, Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. She’s also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she’s ever had.

Sign up for Meghan’s newsletter and receive exclusive content that she saves for her subscribers: http://meghanmarch.com/subscribe

To get the inside scoop on a daily basis, search Meghan March’s Runaway Readers on Facebook and join the fun.

FACEBOOK | WEBSITE | INSTAGRAM | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE | TWITTER |

Review – Blind Kiss by Renée Carlino

 

From the national bestselling author of Before We Were Strangers, Swear on this Life, and Wish You Were Here comes a powerful story of two people who spend years denying their scientifically-proven chemistry.

Penny spends her afternoons sitting outside a sandwich shop, surrounded by ghosts. Fourteen years ago, this shop was her childhood dance studio—and she was a dancer on the rise. Now she’s a suburban housewife, dreading the moment her son departs for MIT, leaving her with an impeccably-decorated McMansion and a failing marriage. She had her chance at wild, stars-in-her-eyes happiness, but that was a lifetime ago. After The Kiss. Before The Decision.

The Kiss was soulful. Magical. Earth-shattering, And it was all for a free gift card. Asked to participate in a psych study that posed the question, “Can you have sexual chemistry without knowing what the other person looks like?” Penny agreed to be blindfolded, make polite conversation with a total stranger, and kiss him. She never expected The Kiss to change her life forever and introduce her to Gavin: tattooed, gorgeous, and spontaneous enough to ask her out seconds after the blindfolds came off.

For a year, they danced between friendship and romance—until Penny made The Decision that forced them to settle for friendship. Now, fourteen years later, both of their lives are about to radically change—and it’s his turn to decide what will become of their once-in-a-lifetime connection.

 

Renée Carlino is a screenwriter and the bestselling author of Sweet Thing, Nowhere But Here, After the Rain, Before We Were Strangers, Swear on This Life, and Wish You Were Here. She grew up in Southern California and lives in the San Diego area with her husband and two sons. To learn more, visit ReneeCarlino.

 

AVAILABLE NOW

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BFF K’s Review of Blind Kiss

Several years ago I remember seeing an article online about people doing a blind kiss study and I was so intrigued. It was a fascinating experiment to judge raw chemistry. So when I saw the premise of Renee Carlino’s new book, I knew I wanted to read it. Perhaps I should have read the synopsis more objectively.

Let me be really honest. There is a reason I stick primarily to romantic comedies. I am an emotional reader. And the angst and sadness is just too overwhelming for me most of the time. Reading rom-com helps to keep my head and my mood in a much happier place. But, every once in a while a book that makes you feel and breaks your heart just a little bit is a reminder of the power of great stories.
Penny is a beautiful, talented and dedicated dancer when she meets Gavin in college during the Blind Kiss experiment. Their chemistry is instantaneous and explosive. Their youth and other issues keep them apart romantically but they determine to be best friends. That relationship proves distressing for many other people in their lives and themselves.
Penny is complicated. But, she is also passionate, creative, nurturing and fiercely loyal. Gavin is a lost soul and Penny is the center of his world that keeps him grounded. Their convoluted and intricate relationship is fascinating. Together they weather some of the most difficult of life’s circumstances, depend on and love one another in ways they love no one else.
Again, I am an emotional reader and it has been quite some time since I have read a heartbreaking book. I cried through more than half of this book. While it is a romance and the ending brought satisfaction and closure, it wasn’t enough. I needed more positive to heal the negative and I’m not sure the good was sufficient enough to make up for the bad.
If you are a fan of angst and heartache, this is a book for you! The storyline is unique and captivating and you will care deeply about the characters. The book is exceptionally well written. But be fully and completely prepared that this emotional story will take its toll on your heart and your tear ducts.
An advance copy of this book was received via Net Galley. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

It was really this bad….

 

Excerpt from Blind Kiss

WE SAT AT the bar of the pub as I continued to stare at him, a mixture of curiosity and fear boiling in my gut. He ordered a beer, and I ordered Chardonnay with beer-cheese pretzels.

“That’s different for you.”

I usually stuck to salads, an old habit from my dancing days, but I had lost a lot of weight in the past few weeks. “Don’t think you can distract me so easily. Tell me what’s going on. Did you break up with Briel?”

He took a long pull from his beer and stared straight ahead. “Don’t be mad, okay?”

I stared at him, wordlessly, the fear fully boiling over. And then he dropped the bomb on me.

The next few minutes were hazy as Gavin, the bar, and my glass of Chardonnay swam together before my eyes. I tried to reach for the glass but found it suddenly empty. That’s weird. It was full a minute ago. I motioned to the bartender for another, then poured it down my throat in a steady stream.

I was breathing fast when I slammed the glass on the bar, shattering my fugue state—and bringing Gavin into sharp relief. I was reeling.

“Shit, Penny! Be careful. You almost shattered your glass!” He practically yelled.

“You’re moving to fucking France?!” I yelled back.

The bartender jerked his head toward the door, and within minutes Gavin was forcibly dragging me out of the bar by the arm. I slipped out of his grip and stood in the middle of the parking lot, seething, very much drunk, and fully freaking out. “So, do you love her?”

“Briel? What kind of question is that?”

“Just answer me.”

“Fuck, Penny. That’s not what this is about. I don’t really have a choice here, though, do I?”

“You always have a choice.”

He glared at me. “That’s fucking rich, coming from you.”

I shook my head vigorously. “Totally different situation.”

“Like hell it was.”

“When do you leave?”

“In two days.”

“WHAT?!”

He ran up and shook me by the shoulders. “Jesus, if I knew you were gonna take it like this, I wouldn’t have told you in public. Pull yourself together.”

I screamed at the top of my lungs and then made a guttural sound as I hunched over and held my stomach.

“First Milo, now you?”

“Don’t you put that on me. I’m not the reason why you’re about to be alone and unhappy.”

“Fuck you, Gavin!”

“Fuck you, Penny!”

He didn’t turn around—he just stormed off in typical Gavin fashion: petulant, recalcitrant, and a total shithead. People in the parking lot were gawking, appalled, covering their children’s ears. But no one made a move to leave. When Gavin and I got like this, we were like a car wreck by the side of the road, impossible to look away from.

Gavin slid into his ’67 Chevelle and fired up the engine. I hated that car because he loved it so much. It had a black leather interior, a flawless paint job, and tinted windows, like it belonged to some kind of celebrity—which Gavin definitely wasn’t. It was his only possession worth a dime, besides his garage, a few guitars, and a Zippo lighter he swore River Phoenix had given to him at the Viper Room the night of his death.

I ran to the exit and stood in the middle of the lane, daring him to run me over as he ripped out of his parking spot and raced around the corner toward the exit. “We’re not done talking, you coward!”

He slowed but let the car idle while he revved the engine. “I dare you!” I yelled.

He stuck his head out the window, leaned his tattooed arm against the door, and actually grinned at me.

So smug. What a dick.

“You look ridiculous standing there. Get out of the way!”

I walked toward his window and noticed that his demeanor had completely softened. There was even humor in his expression. He wanted me to block him, and he knew I would.

“Can’t you have a proper fight without running away?”

“You were lecturing me, yet again. I have a mother, thank you. You have a child you can order around . . . and a husband you can control. I don’t need your shit, okay? Don’t you realize that I’m freaking out, too? I’m going through the hardest time of my life, and you’re making this all about you.”

“You’ve been going through the hardest time of your life for the whole fourteen years I’ve known you.”

“And as my friend, do you think you’re helping my situation right now?” he spat back, his mood shifting once again. “Don’t even. Don’t you dare act like I haven’t been a good friend to you. You’ve put me in the most awkward situations, you’ve bolted on me, you’ve stopped speaking to me for weeks at a time, but still . . . I make myself available to you. I’ve been here for you, always. And now you’re moving thousands of miles away when I need you most?”

He shook his head slowly. “That’s right, Penny. You have been here. You’ve been right by my side, lecturing me, rolling your eyes at me, pressuring me to get serious about Briel, all so I could go and fuck up my life even more while you sit in your nice house, with your KitchenAid mixer, your Oracle espresso machine, and your fucking yellow Lab.”

“Don’t talk about Buckley that way! He’s a good dog. And you love our espresso machine.”

Gavin’s lips turned up at the corners. “You’re so messed up, Penny. You definitely have a chemical imbalance.”

I pointed to my chest, shocked. “Me? Look who’s talking? Please, pull into a parking space. I don’t want to stand here anymore, making a spectacle of myself. Some parent from Milo’s school is probably watching this whole thing. There’ll be whispers at the next PTA meeting. Is that what

you want for me?”

“Don’t pretend like you go to PTA meetings. And look around; everyone’s gone. It’s just us.”

He was right. The parking lot had cleared out. Gavin was sitting in his idling car while I was standing outside his window like a moron.

“I resent you for saying I pushed Briel on you. And yes, for your information, I do go to PTA meetings.”

“You encouraged me to go out with her, then you needled me about it until I finally did.”

“You were horribly depressed! I thought you were gonna jump off a bridge. I told you to go out with her and to have some fun. She’s a nice girl. I didn’t say turn your life upside down, pack up, and run away with a foreigner! You’re thirty-six-years old, Gavin. I think it’s time you grew up.” I shook my head. “God, I can’t believe you.”

He jerked his head back and squinted. “Great band but not totally PC to call someone a foreigner, Penny.” His voice was low.

“Are you going to become a French citizen now, too? You better brush up on your French.”

“Everyone speaks English there.”

“No, they don’t! People always say that, but you’ll see. They might be able to communicate to a degree, but it’s not conversational English.”

Why am I still standing here, screaming about French people?

I needed to tie this conversation up in a pretty little bow. I needed closure. I couldn’t say good-bye to my best friend without it. He was leaving, going to France to chase a girlfriend

I knew he didn’t love. I was losing him. And it was my fault. We couldn’t leave each other angry.

“I’ll figure it out,” he said. “Try not to make me feel worse about my situation, though I know that’s hard for you.” “Your situation? It’s always your situation. What about my situation?” He just stared at me. He was hurting; I could tell. But I was hurting, too. “Listen—”

“What?”

“Don’t interrupt me.” I cleared my throat. “Gavin . . . it’s just . . . I’m going to fucking miss you, okay? I’m having a hard time right now, and life is about to get a whole lot harder the second you leave.” I started to cry.

He hated it when I cried, but he didn’t ask me, “Why are you crying?” He never had to ask. He took a deep breath in through his nose, then released it forcefully in a burst of frustration. A second later his car stalled. He put it in gear, got out, and swooped me up in a bear hug. “Penny, Penny, Penny . . . my crazy girl,” he said as he rubbed my back. I was wiping my snot-covered nose on his black T-shirt and he didn’t care one bit.

He held me for a long time. When he started to release me, I said, “It’s not enough.”

He picked me up again and squeezed me harder. Tucking his face into my neck, he said, “It’ll never be enough.”

“Why?” I said, fully bawling against his shoulder. He brushed a strand of my hair, damp with tears, behind my ear. “I have to go, and so do you. You need to be with your family now.”

I felt the lump in my throat growing. “You don’t have to constantly remind me that I have a family. I love my family. But you’re a part of it, too, and that’s why I’m here. That’s why I’m fucking crying in the parking lot in front of Bank of America.”

He pulled away and we stood there, two feet apart, staring at each other, as if we were committing each other to memory. Allowing one another to really look at and take the other person in, stripped down to our bones, without scrutiny.

“Is this it?” I asked.

“This is it, P.”

I shook my head, leaned up on my toes, and wrapped my arms around him. We hugged again for a long time before he got into his car. I tried to hold on to the feeling of having him in my arms, or maybe I was trying to hold on to the feeling of being held in his.

He started the engine as I stood there, waiting for him to leave.

“We’ll talk on the phone or email or something, okay?”

“Okay,” I told him.

He swallowed nervously. Looking up at me from the car window, he said, “I wish it were you, Penny.”

That was my bow. He knew I needed it, good or bad—no matter what feelings it shook loose from our long and complicated history together.

 

 

About the Author

Renée Carlino is a screenwriter and bestselling author of contemporary women’s novels and new adult fiction. Her books have been featured in national publications, including USA TODAY, Huffington Post, Latina magazine, and Publisher’s Weekly. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their sweet dog June. When she’s not at the beach with her boys or working on her next project, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate. Learn more at www.reneecarlino.com

 

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