I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
by Jaci Burton
Released: September 30, 2014
Published by Jove
“Sexy and sweet! And probably my favorite book in this series!” ~ Under the Covers
Jaci Burton has the ability to make me fall in love with groups of characters. That feeling that they belong together and they are one happy family or group of friends always stays with me and gives me the warm fuzzy feelings. The Hope series is just like that! I’ve fallen hard for the people of Hope. When I first caught a glimpse of Molly’s character, Emma sister from HOPE FLAMES, I was immediately intrigued. What happened between her and her high school sweetheart that sent her running?
*ARC provided by publisher
They discussed a few of the other agenda items. Carter had good insights, and great ideas. She liked talking with him about business. She could see why his auto shops were a success. He had an eye for details and was well organized. She wished she had been here to see him grow his business from the ground up.
But she hadn’t, because of circumstances that had directly involved him—circumstances she’d shoved to the back of her mind and refused to rehash. Not now when they were just starting to get along again.
She was enjoying this time with him, probably because she knew it was temporary. As soon as her mother was back on her feet again, she was gone.
Maybe that’s why she was getting along so well with Carter. She could put him in this temporary slot where she didn’t have to think about living in this town, seeing him every day, having a real relationship with him.
They could just have fun, and this was all pretend. She could live with that, knowing that at some point it was all going to go away, because she was going to go away.
“I guess I should head on out of here and let you get some sleep.”
She looked up from the documents she was stuffing back into the envelopes, then picked up her phone. “It’s only ten o’clock, Carter.”
She cocked a brow. “I had no idea you were the type to go to bed early on a school night.”
He laughed. “I think you of all people know me better than that.”
She closed the envelope and slid it across the table, then rolled the blueprints and slid the rubber band around them. “However, I understand you have to get to work early in the morning, so you’re right. You probably need your beauty rest.”
He pinned her with a look. “Now you’re baiting me.”
“Do you want to go out somewhere?”
She shook her head. “Not really.”
She moved around the table and stopped in front of him, palming his chest. “I thought we’d hang out here for a bit.”
“I can do that. Do you want to watch a movie?”
She had zero interest in watching a movie, but if it got him to hang out with her awhile longer, she was game. “Sure.”
They went into the living room and grabbed a seat on the sofa. She turned on the TV, surfing a bit.
She turned to face him. “Still into horror movies, I see.”
“Well, it is Halloween season. You have to get in the spirit.”
She rolled her eyes, but clicked on the movie. At least it was a classic and one she’d seen before, so none of the upcoming carnage would come as a surprise to her.
“Popcorn?” she asked.
He smiled at her. “Sure. Want me to help you?”
“No. It’s microwave popcorn, so it’ll only take a minute. I’ll bring drinks for us, too.”
She hopped up and went into the kitchen, put the popcorn in the microwave, then poured sodas. She brought the sodas in and went back for the popcorn, retaking her seat next to him.
“You missed two murders while you were gone,” he said.
She laughed and grabbed a handful of popcorn. “Imagine that. Good thing I’ve seen this movie before.”
“So, you’re a fan of horror movies, too.”
“I didn’t say that. I said I’ve seen this one before. More than once.”
“Which makes you a fan.” He tossed a kernel of popcorn at her.
She picked it up and stuffed it down his shirt.
He grabbed her wrists and gave her a warning glare, laced with amusement. “You don’t want to start a fight you can’t win.”
Now that was a challenge she couldn’t back down from. “Good point.”
After he released her hands, she took a handful of popcorn, seemingly ready to put it in her mouth. When Carter turned his attention back to the movie, she stuffed the popcorn down the back of his shirt.
He jerked and grabbed the bowl, thrusting his hand in and grasping a bunch of popcorn, then shoving it under her shirt. She squealed, then immediately silenced herself, though by now she was laughing and there was popcorn all over the floor. It was a good thing Pokey, her parents’ dog, slept in her mom’s room, because he’d be having a feast otherwise.
Carter reached under her shirt and pushed the popcorn higher, making her laugh even more.
“Shh,” he said. “You’re going to wake your parents.”
She tried to stifle her laugh, but she couldn’t stop herself. “Then stop shoving popcorn down my bra.”
“Okay.” Instead, his hand moved, ever higher, cupping her breast over her bra. “Is this better?”
She stilled, her body warming to his touch. “Much.”
He pushed her up the sofa so her head rested on the cushioned arm, then covered her body with his. His lips met hers and popcorn wars were forgotten as she wrapped her arms around him and met his kiss with equal fervor.
Posted by arrangement with Berkley Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © Jaci Burton, 2014.
HOPE SMOLDERS: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GoodReads | Our Review
HOPE FLAMES: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GoodReads | Our Review
HOPE IGNITES: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GoodReads | Our Review
HOPE BURNS: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GoodReads
LOVE AFTER ALL: Barnes & Noble | GoodReads
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