Harper's Rock perhaps?
           Hi there everybody! Here is a sneak peek at chapter one of Russell's Return that TA and I hope to have out soon! As always this excerpt is unedited but still will be enjoyable.  This book is about Russell Harper who returns to his home town with his troubled daughter.  But then he runs into the girl who used to crush on his best friend. She's all grown up and living in Harper's Rock again.  Well, needless to say, the sparks really fly...Oh and did I mention that she is the School Counselor at his daughter's new school???? Stay tuned!!!
            Russell was so taken aback by Miranda’s calm behavior that he didn’t hear delicate footsteps approaching until they were right next to him and he heard the voice calling his daughter’s name. His heart started racing, a million emotions flashed through his mind and that ever annoying sense of doom was there too, albeit briefly. Emily Zane had indeed shown up for the picnic.  Russell hadn’t seen her since their kiss over a week ago, but she didn’t look like she was holding it against him now. He felt oddly relieved even though he shouldn’t care one bit. Their delicious, passionate kiss was a mistake never to be repeated.
          “Hello Miranda, how are you today?”  The little girl dropped her book and hurried to give her school counselor a hug. Emily returned it. “Hello Russell.”
          “Emily,” he nodded his greeting to her. He wasn’t sure what else to do, he felt like a school kid whose crush had just found out he liked her.  But that couldn’t be right because he didn’t like her, he’d just been momentarily physically attracted to her.  Russell Harper wasn’t capable of liking or even loving anyone right now.  His daughter was his life and there was no room in it for anyone else.
          “Miss Emily, can you have a picnic with us, please.” Miranda looked adoringly up at her new favorite person.
          “I’m here with my mom sweetheart. We have our own picnic, but I think we’ll be setting up real close to you, right over there.” She pointed not two feet away. “I bet after lunch you could come over to my spot and have some of my mom’s famous chocolate chip cookies with me.”  
 “I guess I could do that,” was her quiet response. No tantrum though so all was well.  Miranda skipped back over to her spot on their blanket and picked up her book again.
          “She seems to be doing well,” Emily stated as she was spreading her blanket on the ground.
         MATT BOMER
“She is. Here, let me help you,” Russell leapt up and grabbed one side of the blanket to help her get it spread out evenly. “She still has a multitude of problems, but she seems to have evened out a bit. There aren’t so many ups and downs.     
          “I’m so glad. I think she is actually starting to like school and that makes a world of difference.
          “It does,” he agreed as he watched a tiny blond woman of about sixty walk up beside Emily and grab her hand.
          “Oh, Russell Harper, this is my mother Margaret Zane, I don’t know if you remember her.”
          He held his hand out to the pleasant looking woman. “Let’s see, Margaret Zane, ER nurse extraordinaire, helped me through a broken arm, a bloody nose, a sprained ankle and many other childhood mishaps.” He ticked the incidents off on his fingers one by one. “How are you Mrs. Zane?”
          “Please, call me Margaret, and I’m just fine. How are you?”
          “I’m good ma’am, all in one piece and have been for quite a while. Sweetie, come here,” he called to his daughter. “This is my daughter Miranda, Miranda this is Mrs. Zane, Miss Emily’s mother.” The little girl looked at her feet and mumbled a hello.
          “It’s nice to meet you Miranda,” the woman said with a smile. Thank goodness Margaret Zane had kept it short and sweet so Russell could let his daughter sit down and read again.
          “Well Emily, Margaret, it was great to see you, but my little one is probably getting hungry so I’d better go see about feeding her. Enjoy your picnic.” He turned to walk back to where Miranda was.
          “You too Russell,” Emily smiled.
Her voice made his heart skip what seemed like a hundred beats and his hands shook the whole time he was setting out the dishes for their mini feast. Russell worked diligently to get all of their food put out and the two plates filled with fried chicken, his mom’s famous potato salad, garden fresh veggies and baked beans.
          “Mind if I join you after all?”                                                                             j6
          Russell’s heart was doing that strange skipping thing again as he looked up into her eyes. He quickly looked away so she couldn’t work her evil magic on him again. 


Hi there everybody! Here is a sneak peek at chapter two of Russell's Return that TA and I hope to have out soon! As always this excerpt is unedited but still will be enjoyable. This book is about Russell Harper who returns to his home town with his troubled daughter. But then he runs into the girl who used to crush on his best friend. She's all grown up and living in Harper's Rock again. Well, needless to say, the sparks really fly...Oh and did I mention that she is the School Counselor at his daughter's new school???? Stay tuned!!! 

          Russell couldn’t help but think that maybe their move had been a good idea after all. He wondered if he even needed to warn the school counselor about Miranda’s behavioral quirks like he’d planned to do. Maybe he could just get a hold of Emily Zane and see if she could work with Miranda to try to keep her on an even keel. She was a counselor after all and probably had a practice somewhere downtown. He even made it all the way to his vehicle before he turned around and went back to the school’s main office. The thought of Emily Zane becoming a regular part of their lives was a bit too much for his brain, and his body, to comprehend. Ms. Zane went from a wild, skinny, slightly crazy teenager to a beautiful, curvy, sexy grown up. He just couldn’t go there. Ever.

Russell and Emily
          The school office was a madhouse. Parents, teachers, and staff members were mingling around and Russell didn’t know if he would ever get someone’s attention. “Excuse me,” he tried to flag down one of the secretaries.
          “Just a moment sir.” She stopped at one of the desks then she left the room
          One moment turned to five or six before someone acknowledged him. “Can I help you sir?” It was, he assumed, the principal’s secretary.
          “Yes, I really need to speak with the counselor about my daughter please.”
          “She’s with another parent. If you would care to have a seat, she shouldn’t be much longer.”
          “Thanks.” Russell took a seat to wait while the place slowly cleared out.  Parents did what they needed to do and left.  Teacher’s headed out to start classes. And he was finally left alone with the school’s two secretaries.
Harper's Rock, WY
          Russell picked up a magazine to leaf through and was amazed to see that they could get a full publication written on the state of education in today’s world. When he looked up, proud of himself for finishing a whole article without falling asleep, his eyes rested on one very beautiful redhead.  One very familiar redhead with amazing soft green eyes, happy on the surface and sad underneath. Emily Zane was standing directly in front of him with her hand stretched out. His heart skipped a beat. But not from surprise, it was more likely lust induced.
          “Hi.” She had that bright smile that did justice to all of her years of dental torture. “I hear you needed to see me.”

          Russell stood up and took her hand in both of his for a warm shake. Despite his misgivings about seeing her again, he was suddenly happy that she was standing there in front of him. “I had no idea that when you said Licensed Counselor, you meant School Counselor.”


Coming: September 24, 2014
Twenty-eight-year-old Beth Lawrence finally has her life back on track. A job she loves, a wealthy husband and a beautiful home are a far cry from the tragedy that struck when she was nineteen. But now that her past seems firmly behind her, an old flame walks back into her life. Bringing back painful memories of a time she's worked hard to forget, reviving a passion she tried to bury years before.

Niall Joseph is an up-and-coming artist, recently returned from success in America. Volunteering to teach in an inner-city drug clinic, the last person he expects to see is the girl who broke his heart nine years earlier. Working closely together allows their old wounds to heal, forging a deeper connection between them. One that slowly starts to burn.

As she becomes tangled up with a neglected child and her drug-addict mother, Beth finds herself drawn to Niall. But neither of them can anticipate how hard it is to tread the thin line between friendship and desire.

“What’s your name?”
“Are you a student here?”
His question makes me roll my eyes. I’ve been following him and his friends around like a devoted puppy for the best part of my first year. Not that he’s ever noticed. He’s always too busy. Painting. Smoking. Looking beautiful. He’s good at all these things. I know, I’ve studied him like he’s my favourite subject.
“Art History,” I say.
“One of the thinkers.” He gives me a smile. It’s wicked and dirty and makes me want to lick his lips. “Do you paint?”
“Shame. Do you model?”
I blush at this one. “No.”
“You should. Come and model for me. I want to paint you.” His words slur but his voice is still seductive and lyrical. Somewhere, far beneath my high, I know he’s spinning me a line.
I bite, nonetheless.
“I’m not pretty enough.”
“Yes you are.”
“Or interesting enough.”
He pulls me closer, his erection digging into my hip. “Yes you are.”
My heart starts to hammer against my chest. This is Niall Joseph holding me. I made Niall Joseph get hard. I don’t think about the drugs or the rain or the fact he’s ignored me all year. I’m too worked up for that.
“I want to kiss you.” He murmurs it softly. Then he presses his lips to my forehead. My skin feels like it’s burning. Hot and fevered. This time, the rain does nothing to cool it down.
“Okay.” I’m almost breathless. He drags his mouth down to my jaw, peppering my skin with kisses.
“You fucking taste like rain, too.”

Carrie Elks lives near London, England and writes contemporary romance with a dash of intrigue. At the age of twenty-one she left college with a political science degree, a healthy overdraft and a soon-to-be husband. She loves to travel and meet new people, and has lived in the USA and Switzerland as well as the UK. An avid social networker, she tries to limit her Facebook and Twitter time to stolen moments between writing chapters. When she isn’t reading or writing, she can usually be found baking, drinking wine or working out how to combine the two.


EJ Button


         Hi there everybody! Here is a sneak peek at chapter one of Russell's Return that TA and I hope to have out soon! As always this excerpt is unedited but still will be enjoyable.  This book is about Russell Harper who returns to his home town with his troubled daughter.  But then he runs into the girl who used to crush on his best friend. She's all grown up and living in Harper's Rock again.  Well, needless to say, the sparks really fly...Oh and did I mention that she is the School Counselor at his daughter's new school???? Stay tuned!!!

           Despite the late hour the sun was still shining on Harper‘s Rock Wyoming. This was usually Russell Harper‘s favorite time of day in late summer. All the colors of the world around him were rich and deep and tranquil. He should be feeling peaceful, at ease with himself and the world around him.  But not today. Today he felt as if he were about to suffocate.
 “Okay Miranda, what do you think? This is where your ol’ dad grew up.” Russell peeked at the rear view mirror into the perpetually sad brown eyes of his nine year old daughter as they made their way down the main drag of Harper‘s Rock, Wyoming, population 6,114 at last count. Only one hundred more people than when Russell left town sixteen years ago.
          If ever there was a picture perfect small western town, this was it. The cars that were parked along Main Street actually looked out of place; horses tied to the posts that lined the sidewalks would perhaps have looked more appropriate. Mom and Pop businesses, most with apartments above, dotted the streets throughout the oldest parts of town.  Any newer structures were just outside of town, still on Main Street, but far enough away not to interfere with the aura of the perfect small western settlement.
          “That’s the grocery store over there, the big brown building with the blue awning. The second story is an apartment where your Uncle Logan lives.” Russell made an attempt at a contented sigh to help emphasize the statement he was about to make. “That store has always had a fresh bakery that makes the most amazing donuts you've ever eaten, and I know you love donuts. We could probably even get a discount since Uncle Logan owns the store now.” 
          Complete silence enveloped them and another peek in the rear view told Russell that his beautiful, highly intelligent daughter was looking in the opposite direction, paying him and his ramblings absolutely no attention. Her favorite food and favorite uncle hadn’t worked to break the long silence of their two day trip from Las Vegas to Harper‘s Rock. His shoulders sagged as he realized he would have to try something else. Something involving another of her favorite things maybe, but for the life of him he didn’t know… and then he saw it. “Over there is the hardware store. Grandma says they still have a toy section to rival any big city toy store. Maybe we could stop by later. What is it you’re into now, you know, those little talking Critters? Didn‘t they just come out with a new one?”
          But not even the promise of a new toy got him a response from the back seat. So it was on to the next landmark. And he knew the perfect one. Just six buildings down from the hardware store was her favorite place on earth. “Do you see the red brick building over there next to the feed store? That’s the library. I bet you’ll be spending a lot of time there huh? Grandma even said she’ll take you to get a library card after school tomorrow!” If that didn’t get him a response, nothing would. His daughter absolutely loved libraries and books.  She had two tall bookcases packed full, or at least she would again once they were unpacked. And her collection seemed to grow pretty quickly. His wallet was glad that the little town still didn’t have its own bookstore.  He would have been in big trouble if they did. To make up for moving her here he probably would have had to buy out the entire kids’ section.
          But the backseat remained quiet and he didn’t know of any other landmarks on Main Street that might catch her interest. They rode in silence for a while until he just couldn’t stand it anymore. “Sweetie please, you have to talk to me.  Tell me what you really think of Harper‘s Rock, it should be a nice place to live right?  Just look at the beautiful scenery, doesn’t it take your breath away? Plus we’ve got yummy donuts, lots of toys to choose from and a really nice library. Oh yeah, and don’t forget about your Grandma and your uncles.
          “I hate it and I hate you,” she wailed in a high pitched screech that sounded more like someone being murdered than an unhappy nine year old.