~☆Summer Reading with RC Ryan☆~

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Favorite book set at the beach?

R.C: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

 

Is there a subgenre or trope that you have never written but would like to?

R.C.: Shape-shifters. I have an amazing character in mind who would make a fabulous thriller.

 

What is your all-time favorite summer tune?

R.C.: She wore an itsy bitsy, teeny weeny, yellow polka dot bikini… Oh no. Now it’s going to play through my mind all day.

 

What is your best summer memory?

R.C.: Long car trips to see my relatives in Canada. There was a log cottage on a lake with a big dormitory room for the kids. We swam in a frigid lake, climbed trees, chased chipmunks. Pure kid heaven.

 

If you could choose a vacation destination for the couple in your new book, where would it be and why?

R.C.: I’d choose their honeymoon destination – all alone on Ben’s piece of land in the hills, with just mustangs and all manner of wild animals for their nearest neighbors. Heavenly.

 

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Cowboy on My Mind by R.C. Ryan will be available on June 26, 2018.

 

Buy link:

 

https://www.forever-romance.com/titles/r-c-ryan/cowboy-on-my-mind/9781538711149/

 

About R.C. Ryan: New York Times bestselling author R.C. Ryan has written more than ninety novels, both contemporary and historical. R.C. Ryan is a pseudonym of New York Times bestselling author Ruth Ryan Langan. For more information on R.C. and her books, please visit RuthLangan.com.

 

 

#ForeverSummerReading Sweepstakes

 

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~☆New Release & Excerpt☆~Dirty Talking Cowboy by Stacey Kennedy

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DIRTY-TALKING COWBOY

by Stacey Kennedy

SMP Swerve

Publication Date: June 5, 2018

ISBN: 9781250137203 Price: $3.99

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Description

Emma Monroe has returned to River Rock, Colorado, after the death of her grandmother. Now she’s inherited a farm full of abused animals and she’s working as a waitress at the local hotspot, Kinky Spurs. The last thing Emma wants in her life is a man, as she’s still recovering from a recent heartbreak. But when a sensual and powerful cowboy, Shep Blackshaw enters her life, Emma begins to want things she shouldn’t.

 

Shep knows sex shouldn’t be on his mind. He’s got a world of responsibility on his shoulders. He’s attempting to save his late father’s cattle ranch, Blackshaw Cattle Company, from foreclosure. But Emma’s heated reactions to his touch make ignoring her impossible. She’s the perfect distraction to make him forget that his father’s company is a sinking ship.

 

While their nights only heat up, soon emotions become tangled into the mix. Shep’s not only giving Emma the hottest nights of her life, he’s also healing her heart. With every encounter, she forgets her heartbreak. With every naughty adventure, she stops mourning the life she left behind. And with every dirty word whispered from Shep’s mouth, she stops thinking of all the reasons why she shouldn’t fall for him. But when the past comes to claim Emma, she’ll need to choose between the life she thought she wanted and the life she’s grown to love with Shep. How will she say no to forever with a dirty-talking cowboy.

 

Author Bios

USA Today bestselling author Stacey Kennedy has written more than forty romances, including titles in her wildly hot Kinky Spurs, Club Sin, and Filthy Dirty Love series. Her books are about real people with real-life problems, searching for that special thing we call love…in a very sexy way. When she’s not burning up the pages and setting e-readers ablaze, she’s living her happily ever after with her husband and two young children in southwestern Ontario. She’s a firm believer that wine, chocolate, and sinfully sexy books can cure all of life’s problems.

 

Authors Links

Website: www.staceykennedy.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/authorstaceykennedy

Twitter: twitter.com/Stacey_Kennedy

 

Buy Links

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Dirty-Talking-Cowboy-Kinky-Spurs-Novel-ebook/dp/B079DWZ4FQ

B&N: www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dirty-talking-cowboy-stacey-kennedy/1128097344?ean=9781250168429

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/dirty-talking-cowboy/id1341741512

Kobo: www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/dirty-talking-cowboy

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=UJNJDwAAQBAJ

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✫★EXCERPT★✫

Emma spun on her heels, opened her mouth, then promptly closed it. All sadness fled in a millisecond.

Leaning against the doorframe, Shep wore only his jeans, no shirt in sight. Oh my fucking God. Dream Shep had nothing on the real thing. Anyone could tell that Shep worked hard for a living. He didn’t seem the type of man that would spend hours in the gym, indicating his job was the reason he was built for hard labor. His wide shoulders, squared chest, gloriously perfect six-pack with deep ridges made for exploring fingers—all of it was mouthwateringly hot.

His voice deepened into a low rumbly tone. “Darlin’, you really need to stop looking at me like that.”

She lifted her gaze to his potent stare. Heat rose to her cheeks. “I’m sorry.”

“Don’t be sorry.” The side of his mouth curved, like he knew the power he had over her. “I happen to enjoy watching you eye-fuck me, but you’re making it hard for me to be a gentleman.”

Her knees weakened, heart raced. How tempting it was to engulf this fiery passion burning between them, not run from it. And how confusing was that? No more casual sex, wasn’t that what she said? She knew where relationships like that ended up, nowhere good. Yet, her mouth parted, and out came, “What if I don’t want you to be a gentleman?”

Something fierce crossed his expression then, darkening his eyes. He stepped forward, bringing all that strong manly heat in close. He smelled of rain and wood and all that was perfect in this world. He dipped his head, and all she had to do was reach out and touch him. “What exactly do you want from me, Emma?” His lips were right there. His naked flesh, right there. “Do you want me to take control of you and roughly take what’s mine for the night?”

His sexy smile revealed a horrible truth. She nearly melted into the floor. “Oh, dear Lord, I told you about my dream?” Please say no. Please say no.

He lifted his hand, gently dragging his knuckles across her cheek. “Ah, but I happen to like that dream you had and shared with me.” He slid his thumb across her chin, tilting her head up to stare deeply into his gorgeous eyes. “You still haven’t answered me. Do you want me to kiss you slowly, savoring every little bit of your mouth?” His thumb brushed across the plumpest part of her bottom lip. “Or shall I punish you with my kiss, making you regret that you ever turned me down?” The heat of his body sizzled against her as he leaned in closer, his warm breath across her mouth. “Tell me, Emma, shall I tie you up with my ropes like I already have? Do you remember what that felt like? Did you like it, sweetheart?”

“You know I liked it,” she managed, breathless.

His grin was pure sin. “You’re right, I do know that.” He dragged his knuckles over her flushing cheek again, seemingly touching her soul-deep. Her mouth parted, breaths became heavier when he ran the pads of his fingers slowly down her arms, the power he exuded like a wall of strength in front of her. “Tell me, Emma,” he finished.

The words nearly fell out of her mouth. She wanted to experience his brand of passion. She got the feeling if she let go with him, he’d deliver where others had failed. Almost as if he’d take away all the pain, all the confusion, and silence her fears.

Her mouth parted to say, Make me forget it all. The words died in her throat. Her fears were bigger and stronger than her desire. She’d been fooled by one man before. The icy cold reminder still splintered her heart, there and unavoidable. “I can’t,” she said softly.

“You can’t.” There was no disappointment in his voice, only firmness. “Then I can’t.”

He took her hand into the strength of his, and she slowly opened her eyes, her breath catching at the contained power in his expression.

Shep breathed sex and passion, and the danger of him presented itself to her. Causal sex was one thing, but she got the feeling Shep didn’t do causal sex. He was pure emotion, total connection, and all intimacy. He’d wrap her up emotionally and take everything she had, and when he was finished with her, he’d demand more.

With his eyes locked onto hers, he led her from the bedroom. Once in the hallway, he turned to her, leaned in, and placed a soft kiss on her forehead. “Good night, Emma.”

She could finally breathe again. “Good night, Shep.”

Then with that blazing-hot gaze pinning her to where she stood, he shut the bedroom door, leaving her, and all her thoughts, alone in the quiet hallway.

 

 

 

 

~☆Review☆~ All Night With The Cowboy by Soraya Lane

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✫★REVIEW★✫

All Night With the Cowboy combines some of my favorite things:  second chances and beautiful islands (Fiji).  Tanner needs the best help he can find to recover from a devastating injury after his last bull ride.  Lauren is the best sports physical therapist around.  Unfortunately she broke his heart twelve years ago.  Tanner’s road to recovery, and the road to healing both their hearts, goes through Fiji where the island works its magic on everyone.  This second chance romance is a must read.

 

~☆Review & Excerpt☆~ Fighting for Everything by Laura Kaye

 

From New York Times bestselling author Laura Kaye, comes the first standalone title in her brand, new Warrior Fight Club series, FIGHTING FOR EVERYTHING. Join the Warrior Fight Club world today!

 

 

Loving her is the biggest fight of his life…

Home from the Marines, Noah Cortez has a secret he doesn’t want his oldest friend, Kristina Moore, to know. It kills him to push her away, especially when he’s noticing just how sexy and confident she’s become in his absence. But, angry and full of fight, he’s not the same man anymore either. Which is why Warrior Fight Club sounds so good.

Kristina loves teaching, but she wants more out of life. She wants Noah—the boy she’s crushed on and waited for. Except Noah is all man now—in ways both oh so good and troubling, too. Still, she wants who he’s become—every war-hardened inch. And when they finally stop fighting their attraction, it’s everything Kristina never dared hope for.

But Noah is secretly spiraling, and when he lashes out, it threatens what he and Kristina have found. The brotherhood of the fight club helps him confront his demons, but only Noah can convince the woman he loves that he’s finally ready to fight for everything.

ORDER on Amazon | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | B&N | iBooks | Kobo

Add to your Goodreads

✫★REVIEW★✫

Laura Kaye’s new Warrior Fight Club series begins with a bang in Fighting for Everything.  At times this book is hard to read; it is totally wrenching.  Building on a friends to lovers trope it is really more about figuring out how to love who you are:  warts and all.  It is only when you accept yourself can you accept someone else.  I highly recommend it, but be prepared, the PTSD is strong with this one and cannot be taken lightly.

 

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✫★EXCERPT:  No Good Right Now★✫

“I’m no good right now, Kristina,” Noah said in a low voice.

She shook her head. “That’s not true. You’ve been through something horrible. And you’re still recovering. Still hurting. That’s all understandable—”

“I am fucked in the head. You saw it yourself. Twice,” he said, his voice suddenly loud, bitter. Under her hands, his muscles tensed.

“You are not fucked in the head,” she said, anger and determination gathering deep in her belly. Not anger at Noah, but irrational anger for him. She hated that things had happened to him that left him feeling this way. So out of control, so sad, so unlike himself. “Sure, you have things you’re dealing with. And you will get a handle on them—”

“No,” he said, shaking her off and pacing in the narrow space behind the door. “You don’t understand. I’m…” Noah’s hands squeezed into fists at his sides. “…so goddamned angry. All the time. It feels like I could tear the world to pieces. And I want to.” He whirled on her. “Because the perfection of everything around me makes me feel so much more wrecked inside that I can barely breathe.”

 Oh, God.

Tears pricked at the backs of her eyes, but she wouldn’t let them fall. She wouldn’t let herself fall apart. Not now. Not in front of him. Not when Noah needed to lean on her so damn badly. “The world around you is not perfect, Noah. It’s an illusion. And you are not wrecked—”

“I am.” He got right up in her face.

Kristina held her ground. “You’re not—”

“I am!”

“Noah—”

He grabbed her by the arms, not so much that it hurt, but with enough force that it surprised her. “Here’s your proof. I want to fuck you, Kristina. I want to bury myself in you and stay there forever. Just lose myself in you until I don’t know who I am anymore. I’ve been fantasizing about it, dreaming about it, imagining it. Having you is all I can fucking think about. Do you understand what I’m saying?”

Noah’s words unleashed a flash fire in Kristina’s blood. Her heart tripped into a sprint. Her breathing shallowed out. Heat roared across her skin. One heartbeat. Two. And Kristina knew what she had to do.

Acting on instinct, she pulled out of Noah’s grip and stepped backward. Away from his confession. Away from him.

 

 

And don’t miss the second standalone romance in the Warrior Fight Club series coming August 7, 2018, FIGHTING FOR WHAT’S HIS

PRE-ORDER on Amazon | Amazon Paperback | B&N | iBooks | Kobo

Add to your Goodreads

 

 

Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty books in contemporary and erotic romance and romantic suspense, including the Blasphemy, Hard Ink, and Raven Riders series. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. Laura also writes historical fiction as the NYT bestselling author, Laura Kamoie. She lives in Maryland with her husband and two daughters, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.

 

 

 

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~☆Review & Excerpt☆~ Hooked on You by Kate Meader

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Book details

The Chicago Rebels series, Book 4

The eBook is on sale May 7, 2018!

The mass market is on sale May 29, 2018!

Mass Market Paperback • Price: $9.99 • ISBN: 9781501168574

eBook • Price: $5.99 • ISBN: 9781501180903

Hooked On You, book cover

Book description

Violet Vasquez never met her biological father, so learning he left his beloved hockey franchise—the Chicago Rebels—to her is, well, unexpected. Flat broke and close to homeless, Violet is determined to make the most of this sudden opportunity. Except dear old dad set conditions that require she takes part in actually running the team with the half-sisters she barely knows. Working with these two strangers and overseeing a band of hockey-playing lugs is not on her agenda…until she lays eyes on the Rebels captain and knows she has to have him.

Bren St. James has been labeled a lot of things: the Puck Prince, Lord of the Ice, Hell’s Highlander…but it’s the latest tag that’s making headlines: washed-up alcoholic has-been. This season, getting his life back on track and winning the Cup are his only goals. With no time for relationships—except the fractured ones he needs to rebuild with his beautiful daughters—he’s finding it increasingly hard to ignore sexy, all-up-in-his-beard Violet Vasquez. And when he finds himself in need of a nanny just as the playoffs are starting, he’s faced with a temptation he could so easily get hooked on.

For two lost souls, there’s more on the line than just making the best of a bad situation… there might also be a shot at the biggest prize of all: love.

✫★REVIEW★✫

Calling all fans of the Las Vegas Golden Knights and their Cinderella journey to the Stanley Cup Finals…  Kate Meader’s last installment in the Chicago Rebels series, Hooked on You should be your next read.  Filled with heart, an underdog hockey team run by women that no one took seriously, and the perfect team of misfits, this book has it all; there is even a cameo by a reader favorite couple from the Fighting Dempsey’s.  I have loved this series from the beginning and reading it during Finals was absolutely perfect.

 

Kate Meader, author photo

About the author

Originally from Ireland, Kate Meader cut her romance reader teeth on Maeve Binchy and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Harlequins thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron, a fire hose, or a hockey stick, and she’s there. Now based in Chicago, she writes sexy contemporary romance with alpha heroes and strong heroines (and heroes) who can match their men quip for quip. Visit her at KateMeader.com.

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✫★EXERPT★✫

She blew out a breath that was half growl, picked up a can of Italian wedding soup, and examined the ingredient list like she was studying for a test. Why wasn’t she taking this opportunity to get under his skin using those taunts that tripped off her tongue like sensual ninja knives?

“Have I offended you in some way, Violet?”

Keeping her chin dipped, she shook her head, but it was a shake of disbelief, not of disagreement with his question.

“Violet, look at me.”

Glittering eyes snapped to his, in them a flash of something—a visceral response to his demand—but it was gone so quickly that even the rewind called him a liar.

“Has something happened?”

“Look, St. James, you and I have never meshed, so we don’t need to pretend to get along. We just ran into each other at the store and you ‘saved’ me from the unseemly interest of a fellow shopper. ¡Maravilloso! ¡Gracias! Now you can take your steel buns and your sexy scowl off in the opposite direction.”

Color flagged her cheeks, making her olive skin glow. She was furious, and he still didn’t know why. He was also furious, and he had a better idea of the reason.

She’d changed the social contract. They’d been moseying along with her teasing and taunting and flirting, and him acting like it was the worst thing ever to happen to him. Like Violet’s attention was a fresh slice of hell, because in a way it was. She reminded him of everything he couldn’t have. She reminded him of the man he used to be. His body came alive around her, and alive was dangerous. Alive was the opposite of numb, and numb was his best defense against the demons whispering in his ear.

One drink won’t hurt. Thirst like yours can’t be quenched with anything but whiskey.

If he allowed himself to want her, it was a slippery slope to succumbing to the demons at the door. Of course he couldn’t tell her this, so instead he latched on to her words.

“Steel buns?” There was also “sexy scowl,” but he figured he’d start with the ass stuff.

She rolled her eyes, then coasted those same eyes down his body, half hidden by the grocery cart. “As if you don’t know.”

“That I have an ass you could bounce a puck off of?” He twisted to check himself out. “S’pose I do, lass.”

She burst out laughing and muttered something in Spanish.

“What’s that?”

“Not for your ears, Scot.”

One day she’d tell him. One day, he’d get it out of her, preferably while her body arched into his and his body drove into hers.

 

~☆Release Day☆~ Chef Sugarlips by Tawna Fenske

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Get Chef Sugarlips on Amazon:  https://amzn.to/2r8s0WO
Get Chef Sugarlips on BN: http://bit.ly/2JbrOMM
Get Chef Sugarlips on Kobo: http://bit.ly/2F3OlIX
Sean Bracelyn can whip up a saffron-laced lobster risotto in his sleep, but relationships? That’s one recipe he hasn’t nailed. Not that he has time, between launching a new restaurant and building a luxury resort with his awkwardly-blended family. But when his dream girl nearly knocks him unconscious with a dead turkey, it’s all Sean can do to keep his eyes on the gazpacho and off Amber King’s perfect curves.

Amber’s done with guys propping her on a pedestal. Transforming her family’s reindeer ranch into a country chic wedding venue is consuming enough, and the last thing she needs is an extra serving of love drama. So what is it about the stupid-sexy chef that gets her desires bubbling like a pot of hot spaghetti?

Keeping their distance is tough enough before Sean and Amber get tossed together by wacky weddings, lingerie mishaps, and a surly three-legged cat. When Sean’s mom shows up to dish out huge helpings of family drama, a big secret threatens to spread faster than a kitchen fire.

Can Sean and Amber find the right blend of sugar and spice, or will love fall flat as a burnt soufflé?

~☆New Release & Excerpt☆~ Expecting a Scandal by Joanne Rock

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Five months pregnant and on her own. Even so, she can’t resist this rugged rancher…

 

Solely responsible for her unborn child, Abigail Stewart is desperate for the art commission at Royal Memorial Hospital. Winning over the sexy Texan on the board seems impossible, but Vaughn surprises her with his response. And his attention. And a sizzling connection that defies all logic. But even if he can accept her baby, will Vaughn’s dark past tear them apart?

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B076B16TG4/ref=nav_timeline_asin?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

 

BN: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/expecting-a-scandal-joanne-rock/1127202013?ean=9781488091926

 

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/expecting-a-scandal/id1294225791?mt=11

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/expecting-a-scandal

 

GooglePlay: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Joanne_Rock_Expecting_a_Scandal?id=oxM5DwAAQBAJ

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Rafflecopter giveaway code: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/06bb592714/?

 

About Joanne Rock:

Four-time RITA nominee Joanne Rock has never met a romance sub-genre she didn’t like. The author of over eighty books enjoys writing a wide range of stories, most recently focusing on sexy contemporaries and small town family sagas. An optimist by nature and perpetual seeker of silver linings, Joanne finds romance fits her life outlook perfectly–love is worth fighting for. A frequent speaker at regional and national writing conferences she enjoys giving back to the writing community that nurtured and inspired her early career. She has a Masters degree in Literature from the University of Louisville but credits her fiction writing skills to her intensive study with friend and fellow author Catherine Mann. When she’s not writing, Joanne enjoys travel, especially to see her favorite sports teams play with her former sports editor husband and three athletic-minded sons.

 

Social Media links:

 

Facebook http://facebook.com/JoanneRockAuthor

Twitter http://twitter.com/JoanneRock6

IG https://www.instagram.com/joannerock6/

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/jrockauthor/

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Joanne-Rock/e/B004N4QDM8/ref=la_B004N4QDM8

Bookbub https://www.bookbub.com/authors/joanne-rock

Newsletter http://www.joannerock.com/sign-up-for-joannes-newsletter/

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✫★EXCERPT★✫

“Detaching isn’t a problem for me,” Vaughn admitted, unwilling to confess how deeply he wrestled with the fallout from that skill. “Sometimes that makes me far too abrupt, as you witnessed firsthand in today’s committee meeting.”

He watched Abigail’s face, locking on her expression before he continued. “Were you venting negative emotions about that when you drew the picture of me?”

Perhaps she’d been expecting the question, or maybe she’d simply been more prepared to revisit the topic after her initial embarrassment about the sketch. She lifted a brow, her gaze wary, but she didn’t flush with discomfort this time.

“You noticed that and didn’t say anything?” She shook her head with a rueful laugh and leaned up against a built-in counter with cabinets below and shelves overhead. Paintbrushes in every size imaginable hung on a rack over the shelves. “I guess you are good at detaching. If I saw someone had made a picture of me, I would have been quick to ask a hundred questions about it.”

His gaze traveled her body, where her position drew all the more attention to her curves.

“I was curious.” He shoved his hands in his pockets to combat the urge to touch her. “I just didn’t think it was the right moment to ask.”

“Truthfully, yes, I felt frustrated about the meeting when I returned to the studio. I didn’t have any preconceived idea of what I would draw. I just sat down to blurt out anything that came to mind.” She met his eyes directly. Openly. “I was surprised when I saw you take shape on the paper.”

He wanted to think he’d ended up there because they had a connection. An undeniable spark.

Because the longer he lingered in Abigail’s sunny studio, the more he felt his normal boundaries crumbling. And while he wanted that—craved following up on the attraction simmering between them—he wasn’t sure how he would handle anything beyond simple lust. The realization made him edgy.

She filled the silence that followed with a sudden question. “Would you like me to finish the drawing?”

His throat went dry. The question had gotten complicated in the space of a moment as he started to recognize that Abigail wasn’t going to be the kind of woman who would be open to a purely physical relationship.

“I wouldn’t want to keep you from your work.” He couldn’t think of a more eloquent retreat with Abigail moving toward him. Touching him again.

“Not at all.” She took his hand briefly to lead him toward a chair near her painting spot, her touch fanning the flame inside him, making him think about so much more. “Have a seat and I’ll finish up. You can see what it’s like to watch an artist at work.”

In the space of five minutes, Vaughn realized he’d somehow used up all his emotional reserves today. All of his ability to detach. Because that simple touch from Abigail sent all the wrong messages to his brain. He hadn’t given himself the outlet of a sexual relationship since he’d returned from Afghanistan. And now, the consequences of that had him on sensory overload, when he’d already battled the aftermath of a hellish surgery this morning.

A perfect storm of too many emotions without enough time to process them. He should have taken the time to go home and pick up Ruby before he came here. Having his dog beside him would have helped.

But he was already sitting in the seat Abigail had shown him when she returned with a heavy pencil in one hand and her half-made sketch in the other. She set both on a low table nearby, then moved closer to him, her gaze all over him. Studying him.

Seeing inside him somehow.

“Do you mind if I position you just a little?” she asked, already setting aside the folder he’d been carrying.

He wasn’t sure if he’d agreed or not. His forehead broke out in a sweat. Warning heat blasted up his back. He wanted her.

“Here.” Abigail set her hands on his shoulders and gently shifted them toward her.

She stood close, her knee brushing his thigh as she moved him, her breasts at eye level. She smelled like cinnamon and oranges, a spicy, tangy fragrance that would be burned into his memory forever. Sunlight kissed her face as she lifted his chin with one palm, her eyes taking a critical assessment of his features while he battled lust and a whole knot of other things he couldn’t come close to naming. Hunger for her gnawed at him. Hot. Persistent.

“I’ve got to go.” He clamped a hand on her wrist. Too hard at first. But then, realizing his responses were all out of whack, he gentled his hand. Released her. “I’m sorry, Abigail. I forgot that I said I would—” He rose from the chair. Sidestepped her. “Upload my notes on a critical care patient after some—” His brain worked to come up with something vaguely believable before he did something stupid. Like kiss her until they were both breathless. Senseless. “Technical difficulties at the hospital.”

His voice rasped drily as he grappled for control.

“Of course.” She nodded even though she appeared as perplexed as he felt. “I’m sure I’ll see you at the hospital when I start work on site.”

“Right.” He didn’t reiterate his offer for her to come by his ranch. He needed to get his head on straight first. “I’m sure you will.”

Backing out of the door, he lifted a hand in a quick wave.

“Thank you for coming by. I couldn’t be more excited about the project,” she called after him.

But Vaughn didn’t answer. He was down the steps and seated in his truck in no time, slamming the door behind him while he turned over the engine and blasted the air-conditioning on his overheated body.

He didn’t know what the hell he’d been thinking, pursuing this sudden attraction he was clearly not ready to handle. Maybe some other day, when he wasn’t already depleted from a surgery that had brought back too many memories. But for right now, he needed to put some distance between him and a woman who stirred a surplus of emotions. No matter how much he thought he had mastered detachment, Abigail Stewart made him realize he’d only succeeded in getting damn good at lying to himself.