I'm so excited! The first book in my new series, Lone Star Match, is almost here! Thank God because honestly, my writing friends are sick to death of hearing about this.
A few years ago, I had this quirky idea (translation: bat crap crazy) about a bride who decided that she wanted to play matchmaker for her bridesmaids. Anyone who has ever been a bridesmaids know that there are often subtle attempts at matchmaking at weddings because, for some reason, with love in the air, everyone seems to think the single people must be in want of a partner! So, everyone is looking to play matchmaker. A wedding is an awfully short time to fall in love, so I came up with a destination wedding and a college reunion to set the stage for this series.
The bride, Caroline, and her three friends were old college roommates who spent the summers on the island. Five years ago, after graduation, they all parted, in not so great ways and the group kind of blew up. Caroline, the peacemaker and matchmaker of the group, decided it was time to bring them all together with the ones they should have been with because, well, she's a bride in love and wants everyone to be in love, right?
Delaney Winters was engaged to the man she was supposed to marry, Ethan Van Owen, until her father was arrested for a Ponzi scheme and it was revealed that he had bilked their friends out of millions of dollars, including people who used Ethan's family's investment firm. When her father died, the former friends and social elite turned on Delaney and her mother, needing a scapegoat for their wrath. Delaney, not wanting to drag Ethan down with her, broke the engagement and broke with her friends, going into hiding. Ethan couldn't understand her betrayal but, with the negative publicity for the firm, went on his own exile, at his father's request, taking over his grandfather's vineyard and renaming it Hermitage Vines, turning it into a successful vineyard.
Five years later, they're being reunited and Ethan will finally demand to know what happened all those years ago. He only wants to protect his heart from being broken a second time. Delaney still loves Ethan but can't risk it again. Will Ethan be able to walk away or will he try for a second chance at love? And will Delaney find the courage to embrace her second chance or will she run away and continue to hide?
Something Old comes out this week - March 30. I hope you love it as much as I do! Here's a small excerpt to tide you over!
AMAZON / B&N / KOBO / iBooks
"Running away again, Delaney? Isn't that what got you into trouble in the first place?"
Ethan's voice pulled her back to the moment, from her wishes and dreams of what could have been. She turned slowly. He stood a few yards away, hands buried in his cargo pants pockets, white shirt unbuttoned, hair ruffling in the sea breeze, a solemn look on his face.
"Not running away. Taking a break. There's a difference." She crossed her arms, hugging herself against the slight chill in the air.
He nodded slowly but didn't budge from his spot. "What are you thinking about?"
"You really want to know? Fine. No one wants me here, except maybe Caroline, and I'm sure she's regretting that now. I should have gone with my gut."
"And kept hiding?" His quiet voice was neutral, no inflection or judgment.
"It was safer," she admitted in a small voice.
"Maybe. But you've taken the first step. Takes a lot of courage."
She arched an eyebrow at him. "I thought you were still pissed at me. Why are you being so nice?"
He grinned and walked toward the water. He bent down and picked up a rock, tossing it into the water. "I'm still pissed. But we have too much of a past for me to completely ignore you when you're in pain."
His words snapped her out of her funk, and she stared at his back for a long moment. Then she stepped up and looked out over the Gulf. She wanted to reach for his hand, reach for him, but fear and self-preservation overrode her desire. "Why did you follow me?"
"I'll always follow you." His words were solid and true, a statement of fact.
She was shaking her head before he even finished. "That's not wise, Ethan. We can't be anything more than what we are now."
"What are we now?" he asked, genuine puzzlement in his tone.
"I don't know." She looked down and dug her toes in the sand.
"Come back to the house, Delaney."
This time, she heeded his words and her heart. Maybe she had blown her chance with Ethan, when life and circumstances intervened. But she could have this one week, their lives isolated like this island, before reality invaded.
She took his hand then bent to pick up her sandals.
"Ready?" He cocked his eyebrow at her.
She nodded. He tucked her hand against his chest, and they walked back to the house.