Can they build a future on hope alone?
For years nurse and grief counselor Christie Bates has been teaching her patients to confront their fears, express themselves and trust in hope. But as her feelings for cancer survivor Eli Roberts and his two children grow, can she overcome her own fear and love a man who lives every day with the possibility of recurring illness?
Tackling cancer and single parenthood simultaneously has turned Eli into a devout realist. Which is why he finds Christie’s perpetually upbeat attitude so aggravating. Still, despite himself, she’s making a place in his heart. If only he could offer Christie more than an uncertain future.
“You’ve been gone too long.” he breathed in her ear.
She felt as if electricity coursed from her sensitive lobe and sizzled through her body. Her lungs trapped her breath and took it hostage. Was there anything more amazing than being held by the man you loved?
She turned and put her arms around his neck. In an instant, his breath quickened, his blue eyes searing hers before he crushed her against him.
“I’m the luckiest man in the world.” His voice was low, throaty. “Remember what you said earlier, about feeling like a monster?”
She nodded, burying her face in the firm planes of his chest. Why would he bring that up when things felt so romantic?
He tipped her chin and held her gaze. “Please don’t say that again. Don’t even think it. You’re imperfect. Flawed, a little scarred, but stronger now in a way that makes you the most beautiful woman I’ve ever met. Inside and out. I wouldn’t want you any other way.”
It was the most incredible thing anyone had ever said to her. Did she deserve it? An image of Bill came to mind. She could almost picture him giving her a thumbs-up.
Before she had another moment to think, he captured her lips with a kiss so intense it was bruising. Her thundering blood deafened her and her shallow breathing rolled out like a low tide. He tasted like salt and fire as his mouth slanted across hers. She buried her hands in his thick hair, drawing him closer still.
His mouth left hers and traveled along her cheekbone. She could feel the erratic beat of his heart against her chest. His arms held her tight, as if he never meant to let her go. She rained kisses on his neck, his jaw and finally on his lips.
Suddenly, an aching tenderness replaced their earlier frenzy. They needed to explore, to know each other. When he returned her kiss, his hand stole into her hair and wound her tresses with his fingers. Their kisses deepened slowly, softly, the intensity growing between them once more…a single match that had ignited a blaze.
She knew he was strong, but it still surprised her how easily he carried her to the living room settee and laid her down gently on the scattered pillows. His body slid over hers in one smooth gesture. She inhaled his breath as their mouths moved against each other, every kiss drawn out now, lingering, exploring. Her hands drifted over his back then rose to his shoulders and the muscles of his arms.
At last, he drew himself up on his elbows. Now he was looking down at her, and his expression had changed in the flickering light, his blue eyes darkened to indigo. The rawness of his open, vulnerable expression undid her.
Warmth overflowed her heart, filling up the cracks and wounds she’d held inside. She sighed and buried her hands in the thick strands at the nape of his neck. How had this miracle happened? It seemed beyond imagining, beyond wishing. Yet here she was, with him, the only person who’d made her feel complete. Whole. As if she deserved this moment with him.
- Karen Rock’s WISH ME TOMOROW
- Robyn Carr’s THE WANDERER
- JoJo Moyes’ ME BEFORE YOU
- JoJo Moyes’ THE GIRL YOU LEFT BEHIND
- JK Rock’s CAMP BOYFRIEND
- Bella Andre’s I ONLY HAVE EYES FOR YOU
- Pamela Tracy’s KATIE’S RESCUE
- Tara Randal’s ORANGE BLOSSOM BRIDE
- Syndi Powell’s THE RELUCTANT BACHELOR
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Since Karen Rock’s grandmother passed her shopping bagfuls of Harlequin Presents as a teen, it’s been her dream to add her voice to the Romance genre. Now an author of Harlequin’s latest contemporary line, Heartwarming, Karen is thrilled to pen wholesome, tender, deeply romantic stories that all can relate to. Her first novel, WISH ME TOMORROW, is out in September 2013 and her next, HIS HOMETOWN GIRL, is out in spring 2013. Additionally, Karen is a young adult contemporary romance co-author with fellow Harlequin author, Joanne Rock for the CAMP BOYFRIEND series that debuted July 2013 with Spencer Hill Press.
When she’s not busy writing, Karen enjoys watching anything starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks, cooking her Nona’s family Italian recipes, and occasionally rescuing local wildlife from neighborhood cats. She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, her very appreciated beta-reader daughter and two King Charles Cavalier cocker spaniels who have yet to understand the concept of “fetch,” though they’ve managed to teach her the trick! Hmmmm… wonder how that happened?! She loves to connect with other romance fans!
Please check out her website at http://www.karenrock.com, her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/karenrockwrites, and follow her on twitterhttp://www.twitter.com/karenrock5 or Goodreads at http://www.goodreads.com/karenrock.