Monday, February 12, 2018

New Release :: The Billionaire’s Reluctant Fiancée


The Billionaire’s Reluctant Fiancée

Invested in Love 5

by Jenna Bayley-Burke



After her father’s untimely death, the only things Lily Harris is left with are debt and scandal—and her late father’s business partner, Jake Tolliver, looking over her shoulder. Lily isn’t interested in being another one of Jake’s many conquests, no matter how attractive he is, or how convincing he might be. She just needs to keep reminding herself she’ll get burned if she makes a deal with this devil.
Billionaire Jake Tolliver is the ultimate ruthless businessman with a well-deserved reputation for always getting what he wants. Before his friend and mentor dies, he asks Jake to take care of his daughter...by marrying her. It sounds like a perfect arrangement to Jake. He’ll have a beautiful wife on his arm, and Lily will have someone to take care of the mess her father left her. But Lily’s a romantic at heart, and she won’t accept a marriage of convenience. She’s wants the one thing Jake can’t afford to lose—his heart.

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

The Billionaire’s Reluctant Fiancée : Chapter 1


Chapter One
“So, we’re agreed?” Will Harris winced as he readjusted himself in the bed. His skin had gone yellow and paper-thin. Last month, he’d been healthy, sharp, unbeatable on the golf course. Now, he was days away from death.
“I will take care of Lily. She will have everything she needs.” Even if she’ll probably fight me every step of the way.Jake Tolliver had been drawn to Lily Harris the first time he’d laid eyes on her. Unfortunately, the more he cared for her, the more she avoided him.
“You’ll marry her.” It was a strange statement coming from the man who wouldn’t give his blessing two years ago when Jake had asked permission before pursuing Lily.
“Will, she’s a grown woman who can make her own decisions. As much as I’d like to tell her we’re getting married, it wouldn’t go over well.”
“But you have to.” Agitation worsened the tremors in Will’s hands, so foreign to a man who’d solved problems for a living. He had an amazing ability to look at any building and see possibility. What he’d taught Jake in the last four years of their partnership was priceless. It gave him a passion and skillset for architecture he’d always hoped to have. Tolliver-Harris was renowned for their ability to rehabilitate dilapidated buildings, to turn schools into hotels, churches into restaurants, the tunnels beneath Portland into a nightclub. That was the legacy Will Harris deserved to be remembered for.
Unfortunately, gossip and derision had taken hold. Will had made some horrid investment decisions, buying in to companies with little hope of return, spent money on gambling and women until his credit ran dry. A few years of frugal spending and completed projects would have corrected it. He just hadn’t planned on dying.
“Jake, you have to marry her. She is too vulnerable. Someone will take advantage of that, hurt her in ways…”
“She’s not the fragile flower you think she is. Lily is a brilliant woman.” Her intellectual confidence was second to none. It was everything else that had fallen behind.
Will’s head shook with the same twitching pace of his hands. “You don’t understand. She doesn’t have the experience someone her age needs to know who to trust. There hasn’t—”
“I’ve known her as long as I’ve known you. I know exactly what you mean, and I promise you, no harm will come to her. You know how I feel about her, but while she might spend hours inside the pages of Victorian society, she doesn’t live there.”
“No, she doesn’t. I have kept her so close to me, sheltered her, protected her. She’s my life’s work, Jake. And this—” His pale eyes went glassy as he gestured to the hospital bed, the bottles of pills lined neatly on the bedside table. “I’m leaving her with nothing but a mess to clean up. I’ve failed her, and for what? Selfishness.”
“Lily will always think of you as devoted. Bank accounts won’t change that.” Jake stood and turned to the window, unable to watch his mentor crumble. He’d long ago learned to quiet his emotional responses.
“She deserves to be happy.” Will’s voice thinned and slowed with each word, as if he were plucking them out one by one from his soul. “She’s lost so much, and now, even more. Even with how much you paid for my share of the firm, the house will have to be sold.”
He’d never realized how many stalled projects Will had invested in, how much credit casinos would sign over to a man who owned an estate this size. Will had bought the land, built the house, and then designed an exclusive set of neighboring estates. It had made him rich and made him a gambler. Many of his investments would have amazing returns in time, but Will’s had run out.
“You could make her happy.”
“I’d love nothing more.” Absolute truth, and not likely to happen. He took every opportunity to get closer to her, just as she did her best to keep her distance. She was guarded with everyone, but more so with him. Or she tried to be. There were times her walls slipped, and he caught a glimpse of absolute perfection.
Will’s voice had weakened to barely a whisper. “She needs someone who understands her. And I know how you feel for her.”
Jake turned back to his friend, wishing the older man hadn’t been so hung up on the age gap between him and Lily two years ago. Everything would be settled by now, and he could go in peace.
“You’ll marry her. Make sure she’s loved.” His eyelids drooped, the pain meds having kicked in enough to let him sleep.
“You have my word.” An easy promise. He’d love her, always. Marry her tomorrow if she wanted. But she didn’t.
At least, not yet.

The Billionaire’s Reluctant Fiancéeby Jenna Bayley-BurkeFebruary 12, 2018Entangled Publishing, Indulgence

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Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Captivating The Cowboy - Release & Reviews


She's the last thing he needs...but everything he wants.

No matter how often fourth-generation cattle rancher Slade Weston tips his hat on NotMyFirstRodeo.com, he’s found no woman worthy of a second date, let alone the life-long love he seeks. After his last date seemed more interested in his bank account than him, Slade decides to throw in the towel and face the coming summer alone.

Fashion designer Jules O'Connor is counting the days until she leaves the three-stoplight town of Opal Creek. Her life will finally start in New York, where she can focus on building her career instead of layer cakes. There’s just one last thing she wants to know before she makes her escape: why has sexy rancher Slade Weston brought in a different date every Friday for months?

When Slade's string of first dates gets comical, Jules offers to be his wing-woman, which inevitably leads to horizontal schmexytimes. She doesn't want to be a wife and mom; he doesn't want to move to New York City. With no strings to get tangled in, it should be easy for Jules to escape and follow her dreams. But they’re indulging an attraction that grows deeper every day, and they’ve both started to dream of a different future.

Warning: Will whet your appetite for Better than Sex cake, fabulous dresses, and a family full of hot cowboys.


Kindle : Nook : Kobo iTunes : Play

First Look :: First Night

I did not want to put the book down at all! – Barbara, Babsbookbistro

Hot, sexy, alluring, tantalizing, intriguing... – The Book Junkie Reads

I absolutely LOVED this story!! It's a whole lot of goodness packed into a little more than 100 pages making it a fun, sexy, quick read that will grab you by the heart from the first page.  - Bette Hansen, Goodreads

Full of fun and humor and wonderful, loving people. This is a perfect book to brighten your day and make you smile. In fact, I can’t wait to read about the other brothers! - Lisa Parker, Goodreads

I wasn't just captivated by the cowboy, I fell in love. - Pennie Morgan, Goodreads

Captivating The Cowboy Excerpt: Knock, knock


Slade knocked on the weathered red door and then pulled his fist back. What the hell was he doing? Never in his life had he started the night with one woman and ended it with another. Hell, he couldn’t recall a single sober one-night-stand. And the two beers with dinner hadn’t been enough for him to catch a buzz. He ought to take those same stairs he’d just climbed back to the street, to his truck, and home.
Jules opened the door, her deep blue gaze as wide as her smile and charged with desire. “I thought you’d got a better offer,” she teased, ushering him inside.
Her apartment was all high ceilings and wood floors, with windows on one side looking out onto Main Street below. A large bed sat in one corner, the rest of the place devoted to racks of clothes and fabrics, tables and sewing machines.
“Pay no attention to the sweat shop I live in. I’m trying to get ahead on orders before we move.” She pulled open the mini-fridge of the wet-bar that must serve as her kitchen. “Beer, wine, or whiskey?”
“Beer is fine.” She handed him a bottle before uncorking her wine with a pop and pouring herself a healthy glass. Brightly colored fabrics were piled high in a stack on the closest table. “I’ve never seen you in neon.”
She gave a quick laugh. “I love hot pink, but I have to keep it to gray or black at the restaurant. Uncle Ben’s orders. Someday I’ll design dresses all day, but for now dress-up aprons pay the bills.”
“Dress-up aprons?”
She nodded and crossed the room to open a large box. She set her wine on a table before digging inside and then turning to show him a small blue and brown apron. “Can you guess?”
He stalled, and then it came to him. “Cinderella?”
She nodded. “Before the fairy godmother.” She selected a pale blue version. “And this is after. They’re my best sellers, though every time a new princess movie comes out I get a boost.”
He shook his head, inadequacy hitting him anew. He’d never thought to get April dress-up anything. And he probably should. “Do you have really small ones?”
“Is it going to put you in dad mode if I say yes?” She walked back to her boxes and pulled out a tiny one with a cow print skirt and fringe.
“It doesn’t go away.” He rubbed the back of his neck, trying to tamp it down.
Jules folded the apron, then picked up her wine and came back to where he stood. She held out her hand. “Keys?”
He dug them out of his pocket, feeling his brow furrow. She set the apron on the counter and placed his keys on top.
“You’re a good man, Slade Weston.” She looked at him over her glass as she took a slow sip. “But we can’t do this if you’re going to do something stupid like fall in love with me.”
“I could say the same to you.” He took a long pull from his beer, a lighter brew than the one he’d enjoyed downstairs. Chick beer. Which meant she didn’t do this often enough to keep her fridge stocked. With as easily as she’d suggested this, he’d wondered about that.
“Oh, not a problem. You’re everything I don’t want.”
“Um, okay?” He couldn’t help the grin.
“I mean, physically you’re delicious. But two kids and a cattle ranch?” She placed a hand on her waist and cocked her hip out. “Do I look like that kind of girl?”
He shook his head. Not in a million years. Her strappy heels alone tossed her out of the running. And then there was her slight frame, the sexy dress, flashy jewelry, makeup, and not a hair out of place. Not to mention the eight-year age difference. She wouldn’t fit into any of the boxes he’d checked on Not My 1st Rodeo.

And yet, here he stood, his body tight with desire and smoldering with heat. She was stunning, determined, and heading out of town in a matter of weeks. He needed someone modest, practical and within reach. Two people couldn’t be more different. She was an adventure straight off the pages of a fashion magazine, and he was rooted to the land, a fifth generation cattle rancher. He’d never leave, and she’d never stay.

CAPTIVATING THE COWBOY *first look*

Slade Weston’s broad shoulders led the way as he pushed through the heavy mahogany doors and into the wood-paneled lobby at Cattlemen’s, the only steakhouse in the three-stoplight town of Opal Creek. Jules’s stomach dropped as he glanced behind her, to the table he’d vacated minutes ago. With as busy as they were on a Friday night, she’d reset it as soon as he’d cleared the sidewalk.

“Did you forget something?” She didn’t have to check the seating chart to know they were full; there were two tables about to turn, but they were reserved for the couples waiting patiently in the lobby. Sure, people could drive the half-hour from here into Mollalla for more selection, or even the hour into Portland for a food cornucopia, but just as many people made the trip in the other direction. Her uncle had made a name for himself with his blue-collar brand of upscale dining. Cattlemen’s topped the list of the best steakhouses in Portland every year, all the way out in Podunk.

Slade closed his eyes and shook his head, his light brown gaze piercing through her when he opened them. “I should have mentioned I was coming back.”

Yes, but that didn’t solve the problem. She snagged a leather-bound menu and crooked her finger at him to follow. “Don’t worry. I’ll take care of you.”

She didn’t know who she felt worse for, Slade or his ditched date. For almost a year now, he’d been coming in every Friday night with a different woman each week. There weren’t that many available women in Opal Creek, but apparently everyone from the neighboring counties had gambled for a chance at his glass slipper.

The whole town knew sexy Slade wanted to get married. At least that was the rumor going around. But a man who looked like that wouldn’t have any trouble tying the knot if that’s what he genuinely wanted. Any red-blooded woman would exchange her panties for a ring from a Weston brother. Well, marriage-minded women. Which she was not.

Tucked behind the bar were four high-backed leather booths. They kept the one in the back corner empty for employees, loyal customers who needed a favor, and situations like this. She set the menu in front of him as he slid into the booth.

“Do you need some time with the menu, or should I have them walk a rib eye near the grill?”

Oh, that smile. Yes, he must be a player of the first order. Because his grin was irresistible.

“Am I that predictable?”

“Apparently not, since I was sure you’d left with your lady of the evening.” She tucked the menu under her arm. Curiosity niggled at her to find out what his obsession was with first dates. He might be toying with his parade of women, but she sensed something more.

He pushed back his sun-streaked hair. “Isn’t that a hooker?”

“Where?” Jules scanned the sedate restaurant. Nothing exciting ever happened here, even on the busiest nights.

“A lady of the evening. That’s what they called hookers in the westerns my dad and granddad used to watch.” He tilted his head, and she couldn’t tell if he were amused or annoyed. Amused she could work with, but she couldn’t let him leave tonight displeased. Weston Ridge provided the prime beef for Cattlemen’s and her uncle would have her head if he lost the deal.

“Oh, that’s not what I meant. You’d never have to pay for it.” Her eyes widened, her common sense slapping her upside the head as he laughed. “And now I owe you a beer as well as dinner. I’m going to go put in your order before I put my foot in it again and wind up having to sign over my first born.”

Jules clutched the menu to her chest as she sped to the bar. She keyed in his order, grateful the bartender wasn’t busy and could deliver the draft. Thank goodness she only had a few more weeks in this town before she finally got to head back to New York. No telling what she might say next week when Slade Weston brought in yet another first date. She sure as hell wouldn’t be giving away his table again, even if he bailed before the entree.

CAPTIVATING THE COWBOY
Available at all retailers. 💙❤️❤️💚


Kindle : Nook : Kobo iTunes : Play

Monday, November 27, 2017

Anything For A Cowboy - Release & Reviews

Anything For A Cowboy is now available as an individual release! I love that readers have the option to grab the Not My 1st Rodeo anthology or choose just the book that interests them.

Her plan was for them to fall in bed, not in love.

When veterinarian Jacy Weston changes her location on her western dating website profile, she thinks it’s no big deal. Opal Creek…Myrtle Creek…what’s the difference? As little white lies go, this one barely qualifies. Besides, since her brothers have chased off every guy within a hundred miles, the expiration date on her virginity is way past due.

Ray Mitchell is not inclined to waste his time on something as unnecessary as dating, but it’s much easier to take a woman to coffee than to explain to his mother why he’s in no hurry to get married again. Despite NotMy1stRodeo.com’s promises, he doubts he’ll find any woman willing to find herself stuck on a remote ranch raising rodeo stock.

But Jacy is different. She isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty. Or to get down and dirty. Ray’s thinking he’s found the one, until the truth comes out…and he realizes the divorcee from the next county he’s been dating doesn’t exist.

Warning: Contains a virginal heroine looking for the nearest exit for the horizontal highway to heaven, and a cowboy willing to go the distance for the right woman.

   

First Date -- Second Date

  • Fun, entertaining, sexy with just a wee bit of drama Anything For A Cowboy is another incredible contemporary romance from one of my favorite romance writers! ~ Guilty Pleasures 
  • Hot chemistry a quick, cute, easy read with a nice bit of heat. ~ Book Gannet
  • I LOVED the final line of Anything for a Cowboy! ~ Crystal's Many Reviewers
  • A cute story with an ending that leaves you filled with happiness. ~ East Sleep Read Review
  • Anything for a Cowboy has the right amount wit, angst and emotional appeal to have any romantic comedy lover begging for more. ~ Hopeless Romantic

Anything For A Cowboy