Unconditional: A Love Story
Publication date: May 10th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Charli is everything Damian ever wanted.
Captivated from the moment they met, he allowed her to set the tone for their summer fling.
But when the summer was over and he wanted more, he soon found out that maybe his feelings were one-sided.
That was two years ago and he’s still stuck on Charli. He needs to move on.
A lot has changed since they last saw each other, but Damian can’t shake the what-ifs. And the moment they cross paths again he knows his heart still belongs to the elusive woman who stole it the first time he laid eyes on her.
Who’s to say they won’t get it right this time around?
“We need to talk.”
Well, shit. That’s not good, Charli thought to herself as she continued pulling on her shorts.
She couldn’t decide if it was worse to hear those four fateful words from a boyfriend or a fuck buddy.
I guess I’m about to find out, was her wry thought as she finished zipping up the distressed jean shorts that barely covered her ass. With her eyes darting around the room to avoid eye contact with the man who claimed they needed to talk, she located one of her gold hoops on the rug.
Following her avoidant eyes, the other occupant of the room bent to pick it up before she had the chance.
“Thanks,” Charli spoke lowly as their fingers brushed during the exchange.
The warmth of his fingers led to a sharp inhale that she couldn’t even hide.
“Did you hear me?” the beautiful man in front of her wanted to know. “I said we need to talk,” he reiterated. Just in case.
But she’d heard him loud and clear the first time.
Sighing, Charli took a step back and shoved the earring into her pocket instead of trying to put it on right now.
“I heard you,” she said, trying to veil the worry in her voice.
What could Damian possibly want to talk about? And why couldn’t his timing be better? They’d just finished…making each other very happy. His scent still surrounded her and captivated her senses.
But now, the knots in her stomach quickly pushed her to forget the pleasure she’d just experienced.
“What do we need to talk about?” she finally asked meeting his green eyes. They were usually enchanting and full of lust when they were together, but now he looked…panicked?
No, it couldn’t be. Not cool, calm Damian.
Had he found a girlfriend? Was he about to end their arrangement and politely tell her to get on with her life?
The thought wasn’t a pleasant one, but Charli couldn’t really blame him.
As an Ivy League dropout and ex-socialite, she didn’t really feel like she had much to offer aside from a good time.
She winced inwardly and vowed to deal with the origins of that problematic thought later. Much later. Not now when she was standing face to face with the man she’d been trading orgasms with all summer.
Damian regarded her from his towering height of six-two and even though she was five-eight she felt miniscule under his unwavering gaze.
“It’s about us,” he revealed, “I need to talk to you about what we’re doing.”
Charli gulped but didn’t break eye contact. She could do this. She could have a civilized, adult conversation with someone she shared every inch of her body with on an almost daily basis at this point.
“What about us? I like what we’re doing.” Charli pushed her hair away from her face. She hated the sensation of stray strands tickling her cheeks.
Damian exhaled sharply and gave a faint nod. “Yea, I did too. Until recently.”
Charli straightened her shoulders and prepared for the next words, somehow knowing they would pack a devastating blow.
But nothing could have prepared her for what he said next.
Shon is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. She used her degree in English Literature for eight years to teach English all around the world. She has recently returned home to the States and now she spends all her time reading or writing down her wildest daydreams.
Buck Up, Buttercup
Publication date: June 30th 2022
Genres: Comedy, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
All’s fair in love and war.
An uptight, self-contained college girl, Randi Becker just needed one thing: a room. Somewhere she could study, and keep away from the things that most confuse and frighten her: people.
Unfortunately, the “nice quiet place” she reserved turns out to be a room in the campus’ most raucous house. A place seemingly designed to make studying impossible, made even worse by the other girls’ non-stop drama.
But then Buck, a fun-loving cowboy whom all the ladies love, shows up…and everything gets much worse.
Buck seems to have it all: friends, fun, and a never-ending line of admirers. But what he most desires is a break. So when Buck spots Randi, he figures she’s a perfect decoy: he can play up a “crush” on her that will take him off the market; buy him some breathing room. And if he can tease her a bit, and get under the skin of the uptight busybody? Well, that’s just gravy.
But Buck is about to find more than he bargained for. Randi’s strong-willed, opinionated, difficult—and maybe just what he needs. And Buck isn’t alone. Soon Randi wonders as well…if the world she wanted is really the world she needs. If her future is nothing more than a diploma on the wall. And if the most important thing in her world isn’t a grade, but the cowboy who’s planted his boots firmly in her heart.
Fans of Beth O’Leary’s The Flatshare and Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game will delight at this mix of romantic comedy, contemporary romance, and cultures colliding in a campus town with a western flair. Grab your copy today, and fall in love with Buck Up, Buttercup!
Anna Alkire has been a long-term college student, a business owner, and a world traveler. Now “settled”—with a sigh and a cup of decaf—Anna lives in Washington state, where she splits her time between a husband who thinks the North Pole would be a great place to live, chasing her hurricane of a son, learning new handicrafts, and creating worlds full of the kind of romance and fun she most wants to read. Find more about her (and grab a freebie or two) at her website, annaalkire.com.
The Right Kind of Unexpected
Publication date: June 18th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Tess hasn’t experienced many kindnesses in her eighteen years. When her boyfriend abandons her at a small-town gas station, it’s just one more crappy event to add to the pile. Without a car, money, or cell phone, her options are limited, and calling her parents isn’t one of them. So when the family that owns the business throws her a lifeline, she grabs hold. Because even the worst situations can have a silver lining, and this one is a town called Jasper Creek, a diner everyone calls Earl’s, and a young mechanic named Colten Reed.
Rayna York’s standalone novel gives readers the small-town romance they crave with enough feels to make the heart sing. It’s the perfect feel-good, summer romance.
I rush to the bathroom at the side of the building and lock the door behind me. I can’t deal with this anymore. I grip the sides of the pedestal sink and drop my head, breathing deep. In, out, in, out, fighting for calm.
Why? Why did I think this was a good idea?
Three days ago, Dax and I were on our way to a gallery opening when I mentioned I’d never been to Disney World. He said he hadn’t either. I commented on how it would be fun to jump in the car and go. High school graduation was over, my parents were in Europe, I didn’t have any plans for the summer, so the next afternoon we were on the road.
I lift my sunglasses to the top of my head and startle at the red-rimmed, brown-eyed zombie staring back at me. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep since we left, and I forgot to take my makeup off last night, then Dax was in such a hurry this morning.
Maybe our relationship was always a mess. I don’t know. We’ve only been together for six months. In New York, Dax and I got along great. There were parties, restaurants, people, and places to fill our time. Now, without the distractions and being stuck together in mostly confined spaces, I realize we don’t have as much in common as I thought. But it’s more than that. He needs to be right about everything and nags me until I concede to his views. I never noticed him doing that before. There are a lot of things I didn’t notice before.
I use a little soap and water on a paper towel and clean the black smears from around my eyes. It cleans the makeup off perfectly, but the dark circles and puffiness remain. I slide a hair elastic from around my wrist and pull my brown mop of humid-induced frizz into a messy bun.
With a deep sigh, I slide my glasses back over my eyes and push the door open into the bright sunlight. I take in the beautiful field dotted with wildflowers behind the gas station, then close my eyes and lift my face to the sun, disregarding the intensity on my pale skin. I breathe in the fragrant smell of green that only a sweltering heat can produce.
It’s time to put an end to this impromptu adventure. It ceased being fun after the first five hours. And it’s my car, my time, my money. With renewed strength, I turn on my heels, ready to confront Dax and get my car keys back. I’m heading home with or without my soon-to-be-ex-boyfriend. I can drop him off at a bus station if he wants to continue the trip.
I round the corner of the building. Wait, what? Where is it?
I walk to the two ancient gas pumps and turn in a circle, taking in the white building with peeling paint, and everything else in the three-hundred-and-sixty-degree radius, but the car is nowhere in sight. I walk to the other side of the building, thinking he might have parked in a different location while getting something from inside, but the car isn’t there either.
Rayna York grew up with hippie parents that liked to adventure. Where change was the norm, books were her constant—a way to escape. As an adult, many careers came and went, but writing has always been her passion. Everything I knew to be true is her first published novel.