Monday, February 18, 2013

Happy Release Day!!! Strawberry Wine

Hello, my lovelies! my contemporary romantic suspense Strawberry Wine is now available from Beachwalk Press!

Can these ex-lovers work together to save New York City's children?
Caleb and Laura were teenage sweethearts, poised on the edge of a beautiful future, then without explanation, Laura walked out. Now both are cops and have been partnered up to bring down a notorious criminal who is exploiting New York City's innocent children. Can they put aside old hurts to save the children, and will the flames of rekindled passion be enough to give their love a second chance?

How about a wee tease to whet your appetite?

He’d forgotten his cellphone charger in the car. Caleb got only as far as the front door when he saw her, sitting in the driveway in a light brown car. She jumped in the driver’s seat when she saw him, her eyes going wide.

Caleb watched her close her eyes and ease out of the car, her gaze locking on him.

Oh God. She’s so beautiful!
That was the first thought that ripped through him when her green eyes meet his. Her blonde hair was shorter than he remembered, coming just to her shoulders. He recalled running his fingers through the long mass while they made love. She wore a baby blue t-shirt stretched across breasts that used to drive him insane.
Used to.

No longer. Yet he couldn’t stop drinking her in. Her jeans were snug but looked comfortable, and he could make out tight, toned thighs. For a second, Caleb could almost feel those smooth thighs, sliding along his, and he forced himself to push that memory aside.

"Laura." He spat the word out like a curse and a plea all at the same time.

His voice panted her name in her ear, soft and urgent while he pushed into her. Laura...Laura...Laura...

"Caleb. Hi." She forced out the sounds through choking breath.

Her nails dug into his back, moving upward to press him deeper into her body. Caleb...Caleb...Caleb...

Caleb’s eyes stayed on hers.

"Is it this way with other couples, do you think? Do you think they feel this too, Caleb?"

He watched her catch sight of his car, and she gasped. He knew she recognized it.

The rain was pouring on them, but they didn’t care. Laura bit into the soaked yellow fabric covering his shoulder. "Someone is gonna catch... Oh my that...oh God..." Her body slid desperately, pulling at Caleb’s hips as he thrust, surging up into her with hard, deep movements. He leaned down to kiss her, her mouth wet and warm, her skin damp and steaming.

"Uh… Is your mom home?" she asked, jolting Caleb from his thoughts for a moment.

So we’re like...kinda official now, right?" a sixteen-year-old Caleb asked, spread out on the carpet next to her. Strawberry Wine 20
Laura looked up from her textbook. "I dunno. Do you want to be?"


She leaned over and kissed him softly. "Me too."

"Uh. Yeah," he replied, trying to settle on any one of the dozens of emotions running through him. He felt rage, desire, uncertainty, sadness, panic. He’d thought for sure that when he saw her he would unload years of rage on her, but having her mere steps away from him now, Caleb had no idea what to say or do. Instead he turned away, forgetting what he’d come outside to get, and didn’t look behind him to see if she was following.

He could feel her eyes on him while they walked into the house.

That mouth. Caleb remembered what that mouth used to do to him. How hot and soft it was.

"Laura, you don’t have to... Oh my God..." Caleb arched off the seat when she slid her lips down over him. Heat, explosive and intense, raced through every nerve ending to gather right there, and Caleb clenched his eyes shut tight because to watch her would make him come all that much sooner.

She followed him into the living room and wouldn’t really look at him. She was still so damned beautiful. But her body was a little different. Tighter, yet rounder in places, and oh God, her breasts. He tore his eyes away and forced his desire back to rage. He watched the nervous look on his mother’s face when she came into the living room and hugged Laura before gesturing toward the pale green-and-white striped couch.

"Can I get you something to drink? Beer?"

"Ah, hell, Ma. You should let Laura just take a look in the fridge and pick something out herself. She’s practically family, isn’t that right?" Caleb asked, dropping an arm on the back of the couch, dangerously close to her shoulder.

Laura turned and stared at him, her face flushing, and clenched her jaw but said nothing.

"I don’t think any of us were all that surprised when we found out Laura took up with Mike. I mean, Laura always did love our family, seeing that things weren’t all that great with her own."

Now both she and his mother glared at him. Caleb felt a burst of triumph at the flash of pain in Laura’s eyes.
That’s right, bitch. Hurt. Hurt ’til you bleed. Though he knew it would never come close to what she’d done to him, maybe he could make things a little painful for her Strawberry Wine 21 in his own way.

"Laura, honey, why don’t you stay for dinner?"

Caleb scowled at his mother.

"Would you like to help me with the salad?" Caroline asked, giving Caleb a look that mimicked the ‘wait ’til your father gets home’ glares she used to give him when he was a child.

They came back out a few minutes later with some wine. Caroline handed Caleb a glass, and he watched as Laura now took the matching armchair seat furthest away from him.

"You know what I miss? That non-alcoholic strawberry wine you used to give us when we were kids. Man, I haven’t had that in ages," Caleb said, watching Laura choke on her wine.

"I thought you kids hated that stuff." Caroline took her place next to Caleb.

"Nah, it was all right. Remember, Laura? It was an acquired taste," Caleb reminded her.

Laura poured the wine over Caleb’s head and then licked a path down his bare shoulder to his chest.

"Hmm, doesn’t taste half bad this way." She smiled, settling on his lap.

"I can’t even really recall what it tastes like anymore," Laura replied, narrowing her eyes at him.

, Caleb thought, scowling.
"I saw some in the grocery store a few weeks ago. I can pick some up," Caroline offered.

He watched Laura cringe and felt a punch of satisfaction.


Yeah, you remember.

Caleb had to stop looking at her. She had one arm behind her head, absently playing with her hair and staring out the window. Her cheeks were flushed with a hint of red, and he knew she could feel his gaze on her. He’d taken her many times on this very couch when they’d had the house to themselves. He wondered if she remembered that too.

She looked around the room. Anywhere but at Caleb.

A very long time ago, he’d dreamt that he and Laura would be partners in every way. But Laura had killed that dream. Killed all his dreams. He felt his rage begin to churn more violently, and he was afraid he would jump on Laura and strangle her.

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