Just Kidding, Book 1, SWAT Generation 2.0 Series
By Penelope Ward
I looked down at her fitted white pants, covered in dirt marks. Even though she looked sexy as hell, I had to ask. “Why the hell does my mother insist on the staff wearing all white?”
“You’ll have to ask her, although I like to think of it as practice for my future nursing career.”
“I guess that’s one way to look at it. It kind of freaks me out. It’s like you’re all part of some cult.” I chuckled.
“I wonder what she’d do if I showed up in black. She’d shun me.” She snapped her fingers jokingly. “Oh wait…”
Except I wasn’t laughing now. I felt horrible that she knew exactly how my mother felt about her.
“I’m sorry she’s such a bitch, Raven.”
“It’s not your fault.” She looked out at the ocean, then promptly changed the subject. “You must be excited to go to Connecticut in the fall.”
“At this very moment, thanks to you, I’m in absolutely no rush to leave this spot, let alone Palm Beach.”
She blushed. “You’re funny.”
“You’re f*cking beautiful.” That just came out. “I’m sorry if that was too forward. But it’s true,” I said.
“No.” Her cheeks turned pink. “Thank you.”
“Do you have a boyfriend?”
She pushed some hair behind her ear. “No.”
“I want to take you out.”
She looked down at her empty cup. “I don’t think so.”
Ouch. “Can I ask why?”
“It’s not that I’m not interested, but…you’re leaving in the fall, so I’m not sure it makes sense to start anything up. Then there’s the bigger issue of your mother. I just don’t think it’s a good idea.”
“I get it.” I nodded. “I understand.”
Holy sh*t. I wasn’t used to rejection. I couldn’t remember the last time a girl had said no to me. I swear to God, my dick just stiffened. What was it about the chase that was so damn arousing? I had to find another way…
“Can we hang out as friends, then?”
She grinned skeptically. “Friends?”
“There’s this improv club near where you live. I wanted to go check it out this weekend. Would you want to go with me?”
“Venturing to the other side of the bridge, eh?” she teased. “What would Mother think?”
“Will you come with me, wiseass?”
“Seriously, what if your mom finds out?”
“She won’t. She doesn’t really question where I go. I’ll just tell her I’m going to meet a friend. And thanks to your rejection, that won’t be a lie, right?”
Raven blinked for a while before she finally answered, “Okay. Yeah.”
My heart sped up. “Yeah?”
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From New York Times bestselling author Penelope Ward, comes a new standalone novel.
It was the summer of my life.
I’d met the guy of my dreams.
Unfortunately, he was the son of my uppity employer—and very much off-limits.
But Gavin was a rebel. He knew his mother would disown him if she found out about us; in his eyes, we just had to be careful.
He never treated me as his mother did—like hired help.
Instead, Gavin put me on a pedestal and loved me harder than I’d ever been loved in my life.
What a summer it was.
Until it all ended—badly.
I was never supposed to see Gavin again.
That didn’t stop me from thinking about him every day for ten years.
I knew little about his life now, just that he was an entrepreneur living an ocean away.
When a twist of fate had me working again in the very place our love affair started a decade earlier, I knew it was only a matter of time before I might see him again.
But I wasn’t prepared.
What if he hated me?
What if he loved someone else now?
I wasn’t prepared for all the unknowns.
And most of all, I wasn’t prepared for today to be the day he came back.
He saw her from across a crowded ballpark and knew she was about to change his life.
Yes, he realizes just how cliché that really is, but the moment his eyes locked on her, he knew that she was the one.
At least, the one that royally screwed him over. The one responsible for his demotion and the subsequent disciplinary action taken against him before he’d even gotten out of the probationary period with Kilgore Police Department.
It all started with a kiss.
Saylor Rae Spada tried to mind her business. She also tried to not get involved in petty disputes.
However, from the moment she saw him sitting next to her at a professional baseball game, a game she didn’t even want to be at but was dragged to by her blind date, she couldn’t look away.
Then the kiss cam came on, featuring none other than her and the handsome stranger.
Without missing a beat, he kissed her.
Then her blind date decided to pull a knife and try to stab him.
From that point forward, she’s done nothing but cause him trouble.
Trouble that he’s starting to find increasingly adorable.
Gabriel Luca Maldonado, III and Francesca Leandra Solomon were meant to be. They were so in love that everybody prayed for what they had.
Everything was glorious. They would get married, have children and live a perfect life. She would be a doctor in the emergency room once she finished her doctorate, and he would be a badass Navy SEAL and save people for a living.
But then Luca is deployed across the world, and per military regulations, Frankie isn’t allowed to follow.
They’ve overcome a lot in their short relationship, and they can overcome this, too. Two years was a piece of cake. She’d finish her schooling and wait for him. And when he finally returned home, they would marry.
But two months into Luca’s deployment, the unthinkable happens, and Frankie is left alone and heartbroken, knowing that she’ll have to face the rest of life without Luca at her side.
Fast forward two years, and Frankie is exactly where her fiancé’s father left her, in a pit of despair that she has no hope of ever finding her way out of.
She lives life one second at a time, depressed and alone, hoping tomorrow won’t hurt like today.
She finds a job, moves, and hopes that the nightmares won’t swallow her whole.
But just as she thinks that she’s getting better, one of her nightmares walks through the doors of her ER, and that nightmare has a name.
Gabriel Luca Maldonado, III. In the flesh.
Also healthy and whole, and definitely no longer missing.
Sadly, it only takes her a half a second to realize that the man that left her isn’t the same man that returned.
The old one wanted her. The new one? Well, he’s definitely not interested anymore.
Release Date: June 24, 2019
Cover Design: Perfect Pear Creative
Cover photo: Nicole Ashley Photography
Don’t fall in love with your client.
I screwed that up when I fell for my best friend, Reid Fortino. He’s gorgeous, successful, and sexy as hell. I figured it would be easy to find him a match—and save the family business at the same time.
But the more time I spend attempting to find the perfect girl, the more I realize how much I want him for my own. What’s the harm if we give in for just one night?
I should have known that would never be enough.
Now I’m on the verge of losing my job and my heart.
We were an imperfect match from the start, but I don’t know how to let him go.
New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Corinne Michaels is the author of nine romance novels. She’s an emotional, witty, sarcastic, and fun loving mom of two beautiful children. Corinne is happily married to the man of her dreams and is a former Navy wife.
After spending months away from her husband while he was deployed, reading and writing was her escape from the loneliness. She enjoys putting her characters through intense heartbreak and finding a way to heal them through their struggles. Her stories are chock full of emotion, humor, and unrelenting love.
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USA Today Bestselling Author Melanie Harlow likes her martinis dry, her heels high, and her history with the naughty bits left in. When she’s not writing or reading, she gets her kicks from TV series like VEEP, Game of Thrones, House of Cards, and Homeland. She occasionally runs three miles, but only so she can have more gin and steak.
Melanie is the author of the AFTER WE FALL series, the HAPPY CRAZY LOVE series, the FRENCHED series, and the sexy historical SPEAK EASY duet, set in the 1920s. She lifts her glass to romance readers and writers from her home near Detroit, MI, where she lives with her husband, two daughters, and pet rabbit.
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