Whether you prefer print or audio books, I thought I'd share a snippet of it here today.
Single mom and romance novelist Kelly Michaels has no time for a man in her life. But when mega-famous cover model Derek Calavicci puts the moves on her at a romance writers’ conference, she succumbs to temptation. Common sense prevails, however, and after a few passionate kisses she turns him down; she has impressionable teenagers at home, after all, she doesn’t need a one-night-stand with a much younger man, no matter how hot he is. When photos of their passionate moonlight kiss hit the tabloids, her agent has to do some fast footwork to save her reputation. Will the notorious bad boy go along with her scheme?
Derek rarely hears a woman say “no” – it’s been that way his entire life. If Kelly isn’t interested, he’s not going to push her-- even if she does melt like ice cream on a hot sidewalk every time he touches her. But when an unexpected opportunity falls into his lap by way of Kelly’s scheming agent, he jumps at the chance. Pretend he’s in love with Kelly Michaels for two weeks? No problem. After all, the lady may say she’s never going to sleep with him... but he's got two weeks to convince her otherwise.
Derek Calavicci opened the door to his penthouse apartment and stepped inside. Home, although it never really felt that way. At one time the navy and pewter color scheme, so carefully chosen by the designer, the expensive but tasteful furniture and state-of-the-art gadgets had soothed him. But not lately. He set his keys on the kitchen counter and picked up a stack of personal mail waiting there.
Gabrielle, his younger sister and personal assistant, strolled into the room. Dressed in her robe and fuzzy pink slippers, she had a toothbrush sticking out of one side of her mouth and a towel wrapped around her head. She often stayed at his place when he was gone, and judging from the clothes, shoes and magazines strewn about, she had done so this past week.
“So, how was Tokyo?” she asked around the toothbrush.
“Fine.” He put his hands to his hips and glanced around the apartment. “It’s a good thing I pay the cleaning lady so well.”
She moved to the kitchen sink to spit out a mouthful of toothpaste. “How did the bourbon commercial go?”
“It was fine.”
“Did you get lucky?”
He didn’t answer her, merely shook his head in wonder.
“Okay, for other guys it’s getting lucky. For you it’s par for the course. So… did you?”
“Would I tell you if I did?”
“You’re always so grumpy when you get home from these things.”
He headed for the sofa and flopped down, finally allowing the exhaustion of the long flight and the time change to overtake him. “There’s a fourteen-hour time difference between here and Tokyo. I’m beat.” He leaned his head back and closed his eyes, grateful that he was no longer in motion. Not in a plane, not in a limo, just sitting still.
“Hope you aren’t too jet lagged, you’ve got an early flight in the morning.”
He raised his head just enough to look at her. “Where the hell to now?”
She laughed and headed toward his desk. “You really are out of it. The Romantic Moments conference starts this weekend.”
“Christ.” He dropped his head back down. “Little wonder I’m more comfortable in hotels than in my own home.”
“You’re never here,” she agreed, holding out a note pad for his inspection.
“What am I supposed to do with that?”
“It’s your messages. Your voice mail filled up twice so I had to write everything down.”
“I’m too tired to read them. Anything important?”
“Mmm, depends on what you call important. Or who.”
“I’m afraid to ask.”
“Let’s see… Megan called. She’ll be at the conference in Florida; she’s really looking forward to ‘hooking up’. She’ll be in room eight-twelve. Amber, also going to the conference, is in five-seventeen. Oh, and Shannon is going to be in New York next weekend and she’d like to … well, I’m not about to repeat it. Is she double jointed or something?”
“Damned if I can remember.”
“Anyway, there’s another page and a half of these.”
“I’ll look at them later.”
“Good idea. Oh, and Frankie called. About nine times.”
“What the hell did she want?”
“You. Under her tiny, little thumb. When are you going to fire her and get a new manager? One who doesn’t want to run your life.”
“Why bother when I can just avoid this one as much as possible?”
“She wants to make sure you two are on the same flight tomorrow so she can go over a few things with you on the way down,” Gabby spoke over her shoulder as she headed to the kitchen. “Something about the ‘Flawless’ campaign. You know, that new line of men’s cologne and skin care products you’re promoting.”
He raised his head again. “And?”
She returned, holding out a bottle of water and gave him a triumphant smile. “And I made sure to book you on a different flight.”
“Good girl.” He unscrewed the cap and took a long drag. “What do I have going on today?”
“I canceled everything when I realized you were getting back so late. Thought you might want a little break.”
“Don’t forget Anthony’s engagement party is tonight.”
“I can’t believe my kid brother is getting married. Did I buy them something nice?”
“Besides paying for the wedding? Crystal. Expensive and impractical, just your style.”
“I’m such a nice guy.”
“Well, you’d better be prepared to answer the inevitable from the relatives tonight.”
“You mean the ‘and when are you going to settle down’ stuff?” Now that he’d turned thirty, that was all anyone wanted to know. His younger brother’s engagement had only made it worse.
“Exactly. At this point, I’m beginning to think you’re commitment-phobic myself.”
“I’ve got nothing against commitment.” He raised his feet to set them on the coffee table. “But whenever the urge strikes, I lie down until it passes.”
“Yeah, I know. Preferably with a blonde or a redhead.”
“Gabby, I’m hurt you think I’m so shallow. I’d never turn down a hot brunette.”
The Model Man is available in print and digital format from The Wild Rose Press, and on audio book by Auidolark, where it’s a new release special!
Funny, compassionate, heart wrenching, and down right sexy – Simply Romance Reviews