I wish I could scream it at them, but no one will listen to me. Instead, they choose to ignore me by making me into something I’m not. I try to make them happy, but no matter how hard I try it’s not good enough. I make good grades. Hell, I was top of my class senior year, but things happen. We make sacrifices for people important to us. My parents wouldn’t understand that. Instead, they say I could be better. I’m the good girl to everyone else, but to my parents I fall short. To most I have curves, to them I’m fat. I just want them to be happy with my imperfections. You know what? I’m tired of giving and getting nothing in return. Screw them.
The only one that I want to see me for who I really am…is him.
TARALYNN EVANS has always been the good girl, forced to befriend people she cares nothing about. She tries hard to be what them and everyone else expects her to be, but what’s the point when it’s never enough to gain their approval? She’s over lying to make others happy or self-sacrificing to spare their feelings. For once, she just wants to be herself. She wants to feel human, tired of being a puppet.
When tragedy strikes her in the worst way, she finds herself bargaining in distress, trying to find reason and rationality in what’s set before her, but will he give in when in most cases the good girl never gets the bad boy?
Ink, sex, lies, loyalty.
Those are the things that define me, and my life. I do me. Nothing else matters. I don’t need anyone’s approval, nor do I seek it. I’m comfortable with the man I am. The only thing that haunts my dreams are those sapphire eyes that remind me of midnight. I will shut it down every single time. I can’t have her. She deserves more than what I’m after. The problem is that sometimes life is a bitch. That curveball was nowhere in sight, but now that it’s been thrown…my life may never be the same.
SHAWN BRADEN has always been the bad boy. He’s always had the love and support of his parents no matter what he does. He knows he can have any girl he wants. Too bad he never wants them more than once. What he truly wants is the one thing he’s never admitting to, not even to himself. What happens when he starts seeing past the facade she’s put on for years and shows him the real girl that is hiding inside? Will he fall against his will, or will she become nothing more than every girl before?
"Why the fuck was that prick bringing you home?"
After Mason made it known yesterday morning that I'm sleeping
with Jared, you'd think Shawn would know the answer to that question. He
probably does. He just wants me to verbalize it. I'm not going to.
"Leave it, Shawn." I twist around and pin him with a stare. Next, I
toss the tequila back, but this time my eyes widen. Ok, maybe my buzz
wasn't so much gone like I originally thought.
Wow. That was stout.
"How much have you had to drink?"
"Enough that I should be in bed." What's with the twenty questions?
More importantly why does he even care? From what I saw earlier tonight,
or last night really, Shawn and Mason left with the brunette trash from
Level. I don't have to guess what they left to go do and I certainly
don't want to imagine it.
"So, let me get this
straight. You, drunk, got onto the back of Cole's bike? Are you fucking
crazy, Tara?" He doesn't wait for a reply. "Or do you have a death
"Neither, are you done now?" His palm
smacks the side of the refrigerator before turning. Moments later, I
hear the door to the half bathroom down the hall slam closed.
I turn back around, pour yet another glass and down it. I'm going
to pay for this when I wake up and it's going to be so much worse than
yesterday morning's hangover. Screw it. If I'm going to do it in the
first place, might as well do it right.
know, it's only a matter of time before Holly has him back in her
grasps. You don't stand a chance with Shawn; you never have." Cassie's
catty bitch-ass voice assaults my ears. Sometimes she's worse than
Amanda. I put up with Mandy’s shit because she is dating my best friend,
but it'll be a cold day in hell before I deal with this bitch’s crap.
Without giving it a bit of thought, I turn and leap forward. She needs a
good butt kicking. I'm not a fighter. I know I can take her if I tried,
but I don't actively seek out confrontations. My mother would flip her
lid, so I do what's necessary to avoid that at all cost.
Before I reach her, a set of massive arms grab me by the waist,
pulling me backwards and against his hard chest. "Get. Out. Of. My.
House." Shawn bites each word out through clenched teeth. I know they
aren't directed at me. Even if I weren’t looking at her shocked
expression, I'd know they are aimed at Cassie Winston.
"I don't think he stuttered, Barbie?" Okay, Barbie is usually held
for Holly, the queen bitch herself, but I had to. Sue me if you don't
like it. I don’t usually act like this, but I’ve had a fair share of
"You won't disrespect her, or
anyone else that lives here. Last time I checked, you don't live here…
so leave." His words are still a bark. Shawn can come off quite scary at
times. Frankly, Cassie looks like she is about to pee her pants.
Inside, I'm loving it. This is so much better than me punching her. "Or I
could let Tara go, but I don't think you want me to. Trust me, she will
"I will? Hell, I don't know if I
will or not. I've never hit another person in my life. I'm bigger than
Cassie, sure, in every way, but I'm not going there.
The snootiness crosses her face again. It's the same one my mother
wears around me. She should have been my mother's kid. I'm certain her
and my mother would get along much better than my mother and I do. "Yes,
"Oh that bitch went there. Yes, I
have issues with my weight. I'm not over weight, I don't think, but I’m
not thin or skinny by any means, and it doesn't matter how much I work
out, I'm never going to be a small size. I love to cook and I love to
eat the food I cook. It's just not in the cards for me. Doesn't mean I
like it, but she doesn't have a right to throw it in my face, especially
with Shawn standing here.
I try to jump
forward, but Shawn's hold on me tightens. "Leave. Now." Another bark,
only this time his voice is deeper. It's a warning.
"Whatever." She turns, exiting the kitchen followed by the house as quickly as her feet will move.
Once I hear the door click closed he releases me, and as he steps
backwards the warm flannel shirt I'm wearing, Jared’s shirt, is pulled
off my body. I turn, facing Shawn. What the heck is that about?
"Go take a shower?" My jaw drops. He rips the shirt down the middle, making two un-wearable pieces. What the flyin...
The material is disregarded and lands on the tile floor.
I plant my hands on my hips in a defiant gesture. He's not about
to order me around. I might take that crap from my parents, but I won't
from anyone else. "Excuse me?"
Shawn wastes no
time. He springs forward in an instant, making me step backwards until
my back collides with the wall. He continues to close in, placing his
palms on the flat surface of the wall next to my face and leans in. "You
smell like him and I don't fucking like it.
"Oh tough shit."
Because you smelling like a cheap whore is so much better," I lash
back. I don't waste my time either. I take both of my hands, placing my
palms on his chest and pushing as hard as I can. It might not have come
across as a shove, because his body didn't move away from mine as much
as I intended it to. "Piss off, Shawn." With those last words I leave
the kitchen, taking myself up the stairs to my bedroom for a shower… and
not because Shawn ordered me to, but because I do in fact stink.
If I weren't as drunk as I am right now, I might have stopped to
analyze what just happened between us, but I don't. I'm going to
struggle enough just getting out of my clothes to shower tonight, or
this morning, or whatever the hell time of the day this is.
Mother effin' jerk, he is.
MEET N.E. HENDERSON
Hi, I’m Nancy,
I’m a mom, wife, writer, obsessed reader, and fiction whore to the chore. I’m an introvert. It takes me a minute to warm up to people, but once I do, you’ll probably never get me to shut up.
I live in the south, Mississippi to be exact. I love warm sunny days and I despise cold and raining weather. I have a love/hate relationship with my Bull Terrier, Xena. The little winch thinks my husband belongs to her when he most certainly does not; he belongs to me.
I love to read possibly even more than I love to write. That can be a problem when I have fictional people taking up room inside my brain and screaming to get out. They don’t understand why I can’t give them my full attention.
In my free time, I love riding my Can Am Maverick and finding new off road trails. I’m a city girl, married to a country boy, who likes to get a little dirty and sometimes muddy. Even though I don’t do it often, I love roller coasters. The steel coasters that is. I hate the wooden ones.
Readers, connect with me. I love hearing from you and reading your reviews.
Mitch Abrams, the bassist for the popular rock band
Generation Rejects, has been in love with Gracie Cook for years. But Gracie, a
complicated girl with a lot of baggage, was too blind to see how she felt about
the man who had always stood by her.
Until one night of passion brought them closer than they had
ever been before.
Feeling off balance and out of control, Gracie does the only
thing a girl with self-destructive tendencies can do: end things with Mitch
before they can really begin.
So Mitch moves on. With his band, his friends, and a new
Yet he can’t seem to forget about the girl who threw his
Gracie, who is still struggling to build a life after
crashing to the bottom, finds it hard to forget about her one night with Mitch.
And even as she tries to convince herself it was only sex, her heart knows
But life is full of chances and desperate moments. And when
Mitch and Gracie are thrown back into each other’s lives, will they seize at
the opportunity to do things right?
Or will the rock star and the less than ordinary girl crash
EXCERPT I realized I was staring. Mitch knew I was staring.
So of course he purposefully gave his girlfriend his attention, his body angled towards me but his head bent low so that his face was close to Sophie’s. He pushed the hair back off her forehead. His eyes were on her face and he gave her soft smile that I recognized only too well.
A smile that I had thought, at one time, was only for me.
Get over it, Gracie! It’s been a year! What did you think would happen? That he’d pine over you forever? Get a grip!
I started to turn away when Mitch looked back towards me, his eyes locking on mine.
I forgot how to breathe.
My heart thudded almost painfully in my chest.
My mouth went dry and my hands began to tremble. A need that I had almost forgotten about thrummed through my body. My belly tightened and my nipples hardened. The air hummed and sizzled. I was altered completely. Just by a look.
How had I never felt this electricity between us before? The answer was obvious.
I had been totally blind. I hadn’t wanted to see it. Because if I had acknowledged it, everything would have changed. And at that time I couldn’t handle that. The truth was I had been absolutely terrified.
Maysie squeezed my arm but I barely felt it. Jordan was still talking but I didn’t hear him.
All I could see was Mitch.
All Mitch could see was me.
We were locked in a stand off, neither of us moving.
All too soon he broke our intense staring contest. He bent down and kissed his girlfriend almost angrily. It was a harsh press of lips that seemed to take Sophie by surprise. She wrapped her arms around Mitch and held him tenderly even as he ground his mouth against hers.
I looked away. I could barely breathe around the lump sitting painfully in the middle of my chest. A pain that I knew to be jealousy.
York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Contemporary and Paranormal
romance including The Find You in the Dark and Bad Rep series as well as the
upcoming stand alone romance, Reclaiming the Sand, and a dark new adult series
for Gallery Books.
Meredith spent ten years as a counselor for at risk teens and children. First
working at a Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault program and then later a program
for children with severe emotional and mental health issues. Her former clients
and their stories continue to influence every aspect of her writing.
writing (or being tortured with all manner of beauty products at the hand of
her very imaginative and extremely girly daughter), she is eating chocolate,
watching reality television that could rot your brain and reading a smutty
novel or two.
Meredith is represented by Michelle Johnson with the Inklings Literary Agency.
Hawke Evans is the drummer for the Grammy winning Sphere of Irony. The quiet, tattooed and pierced hottie behind a pair of geek chic glasses is hiding a seriously troubled adrenaline junkie with a death wish.
Abby Kessler is studying psychology at UCLA. Her desire to help those fighting mental illness stems from a life-changing incident in her past.
When Abby meets Hawke backstage at a local club, she’s instantly attracted to his bad boy good looks. But when she discovers the damaged man beneath the beautiful exterior, she’s compelled to make up for past mistakes.
How long will it take for Hawke to realize his reckless behavior isn’t only endangering him, but the hearts of those around him? How long will it take for Abby to see that she can’t help someone who has no desire to be fixed?
***This is book 4 in the Sphere of Irony Series. It can be read as a standalone. This is a spin-off of the Famous Series***
I grew up in the slums and lost everything I loved to poverty, illness, and death. I had only one skill to leverage myself out of my circumstances—violence. Being hired out as a mercenary hitman brought me money and built an empire. But all that I've fought for is in jeopardy. My next job: Steal secret information that could bring down world governments. Find my target. Destroy it. But then, I meet her.
Karma hates me. When my best friend Rose is kidnapped, I have no choice but to take a job as a mule for a pair of criminals intent on selling top-secret information to the highest bidder. I should have known that bad luck tends to cling, because the plane I'm on goes down. That I survived a crash-landing was a miracle. And so was being rescued by Rafe Mendoza—hot, sexy, dangerous. The thing is, he wants the information that I need to free Rose. I can't let him have it, but I need his help. And I need to fight this crazy attraction for this mercenary with hungry eyes. Rose is depending on me, and I won't let her down, no matter how appealing Rafe is.
The ricochet of the bullet
has swollen my eye shut. I might be slightly concussed from the free fall from
six thousand feet into the jungle. I’ve no clue where we are and we have no
supplies, but I’ve never been happier than when Ava stuck her tits into my
face. Those babies felt like the softest pillows ever created and I would’ve
been happy to suffocate in damp valley of cleavage. Maybe I’d even get the
chance to lick her sweat away.
I might have groaned and
pretended my injury was worse to lengthen the moment. Her delicate hands
smoothed over my forehead and, it may have been my imagination, but it seemed
liked she might’ve lingered over my hair. Dig in, I want to grunt.
“What the heck is that
sound?” Ava clutches me to her.
If I don’t answer, does
that mean I can stay in this position forever? Because I want to. Actually, no,
I’d like to move over and suck one fat tit into my mouth until it’s hard as a
diamond. Then I’d like to slide down until my mouth is level with her pussy and
see how salty sweet she tastes between her legs. The beast between my legs
roars to life and it’s a good thing that the monkeys above us scream again,
causing her to jump and strike my good eye with her elbow. The pain serves as a
reminder of where we are, who I am, and what the fuck I should be paying
“It’s the howler monkey.
They sound like humans screaming or sometimes like the jaguar. They’re kind of
dumb and if we found Afonso’s gun, we’d be able to kill one and have meat every
night for a week.”
She shudders. “I don’t want
to eat monkey.”
The jungle is hot and wet
during the day and cold at night. If the mosquitos don’t eat you alive, the
jaguars and anacondas might. Not very many people can crash-land into the
middle of the Amazon and make it out alive, but I’m upping our odds from around
20 percent to 50 percent based on Ava’s positive attitude. Unless my eye heals
up, I’m not giving us more than that. If we could find the Boy Scout bag,
though, we could bring our odds up significantly.
“There’s plenty of food in
the Amazon from plantains to fish, so if you don’t like monkey, we won’t eat
She shudders again. “Thank
“You a vegetarian?”
No, that couldn’t be right.
Didn’t she eat some prosciutto at the café? But I want to hear it from her. I
want to know everything about her.
“No, but for some reason
eating something that screams like a human freaks me out.”
“Monkey is off the menu,” I
say, making no attempt to move away from her rack. “I have a knife in my belt.”
“Do you have anything else
besides the knife?” she asks. Her tone is accusatory like I’m holding out on
“No,” I say slowly. “Just
She narrows her eyes and
then reaches out with her good hand and pokes my waistline. “What about that?”
“My pants? I don’t think
that they’d fit you or they’d be a good weapon. Besides, I’d rather my legs
didn’t get eaten by mosquitos.”
“Look, if you just plan on
leaving me behind, then do it now. Don’t string me along.”
“I have no idea what you’re
talking about.” Just my luck to perv on a crazy woman.
“That!” she spits out, and
this time her finger jabs lower, right into the meat of my dick. I flinch back.
“I can tell you’re packing something. What’s that thing in your pocket?”
“None of your fucking
business,” I growl out, my happy feeling sucked away. I can feel the heat
rising in my face that has nothing to do with the humidity. I will my erection
to subside but as she stares at it, it does nothing but grow.
“Oh my god. Is that a . . .
that’s not a gun, is it?” Her lips part in shock.
“No.” The erection isn’t
going to go down anytime soon. Not with her eyes wide with wonder. She raises
her gaze to me and then drops back down again, and hell if she doesn’t lick her
fucking lips. I turn away, unzip, and then pull the shaft straight up behind
the waistband of my cargo pants. I fasten the zipper, carefully, and then pull
my T-shirt down over the top. It hides most of the problem. “Let’s go.”
“I’m sorry,” she mumbles.
I surge to my feet,
catching her off guard. She stumbles back and thankfully stops staring at my
junk. “Enough,” I growl more roughly than I intend. “We have important things
to concentrate on, like where are we going to sleep for the night.”
She looks stricken and nods
in agreement. “Sorry, I just was taken by surprise. You don’t have to tell me
what’s in your pocket if you don’t want to. But I need to remind you that we’re
in this together.”
I feel like an ass. I don’t
know whether to laugh or cry that she thinks my dick is fake. That’s a new
Jen Frederick lives with her husband, child, and one rambunctious dog. She's been reading stories all her life but never imagined writing one of her own. Jen loves to hear from readers so drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jill Myles has been an incurable romantic since childhood. She reads all the 'naughty parts' of books first, looks for a dirty joke in just about everything, and thinks to this day that the Little House on the Prairie books should have been steamier.
After devouring hundreds of paperback romances, mythology books, and archaeological tomes, she decided to write a few books of her own - stories with a wild adventure, sharp banter, and lots of super-sexy situations. She prefers her heroes alpha and half-dressed, her heroines witty, and she loves nothing more than watching them overcome adversity to fall into bed together.