Originally from Ireland, Kate cut her romance reader teeth on Maeve Binchy and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Harlequins thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron or a fire hose, and she’s there. Now based in Chicago, she writes sexy contemporary romance with alpha heroes and strong heroines who can match their men quip for quip.
~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~
“Don’t you make a charming picture!”
Gwen was languidly brushing a long-haired pup when his bitter words rang out of the darkness. She knew that low, husky voice! And it was so achingly familiar that every nerve in her body went on instant alert, and her heart began to pound wildly. The brush fell from her numb fingers as she whipped around, hardly daring to breathe.
“Mitch?” His name emerged as a hoarse, disbelieving whisper.
“Don’t act so surprised.” Sneering, he emerged from the shadows, and balanced his long frame against the doorframe to keep it from tipping drunkenly back and forth. “You know very well that your loving husband arranged for me to keep you company on this delightful little pleasure cruise!
“Or was it you?” His eyes narrowed suddenly as stunned heat flushed her pale cheeks. “By God, it was, wasn’t it? You arranged to have me here! He doesn’t have a clue what you did!”
The blank shock on her face was too real to be contrived. But ripe fury was overwhelming his common sense. All the long-suppressed anger and betrayal was churning in his gut, bubbling over, finding a handy and oh-so-perfect target. And nothing else mattered but letting it spew out in a hot, vicious torrent.
“What’s the matter, sweetheart?” He took an unsteady step forward, and clenched his big fists until the knuckles turned white. “Finally tired of your feeble old charity case? Isn’t he man enough to satisfy your needs?” Oh, how he’d love to wrap his long fingers around her lying little throat and squeeze, until she’d paid for every sleepless night since the day she’d run away from him!
Gwen scooted back against the wall as terror and elation warred for command. Outrage won by a narrow margin, and gave her the strength to scramble to her feet. “What are you talking about? You aren’t...I didn’t...”
She sputtered for a second, then backed away again when he advanced, with murder clearly visible in his dark eyes. How could she have forgotten how big he was? Those rugged hands could snap her into tiny little pieces!
“Did you think I wouldn’t figure it out?” His arms shot out to block her escape, and he deliberately loomed over her, forcing her to cringe against the sturdy wall. “I’m no Einstein, but even a moron could see through your flimsy motives!”
“You’re insane!” Her voice shook as she punched both fists against his wide chest. It was like hitting a granite boulder. “Mitch, let me go!” Rising panic made her voice shrill as he crushed her between his muscular body and the wall. Every nerve began to scream warnings as she felt his unbridled rage... and God help her, his fierce arousal.
This wasn’t the Mitch O’Neill she’d worshiped, the consummate lover she still dreamed about every night! This man was a terrifying stranger, bent on destroying her!
His harsh mouth descended on hers, choking off her frightened cry. So familiar, and yet not... And even so, some insane part of her own mind arched into the savage kiss with a wild passion she hadn’t even known she possessed.
But when his long fingers closed over her tender flesh, something snapped. Just as he’d taught her all those years ago, she twisted slightly to one side, then brought her knee up with explosive force.
He was drunk--but no man alive could be drunk enough to ignore that visceral agony!
The air exploded from his lungs, and he staggered back a pace. That was all the room she needed. Snarling, she brought her knee up again, and felt it connect a second time, squarely on target. And as his long body folded like a snapped twig, she clenched both fists together and swung them, like an iron mace, at his unprotected throat.
“And you taught me never to lower my guard!” Panting, she glared down at his writhing frame. Serve him right if he walked funny for a whole month!
“Gwen...” His contorted face was a sickly green. “Jesus, Gwen!”
“You deserved it!” Vigorously she wiped a hand across her mouth. “Remember that the next time you get stinking drunk, you two-timing...”
In book two of the Landcaster Brothers: She knows that if he catches her, she will die by her ex-boyfriend’s hands. Clair runs to the only person she knows who can help her, her friend, Hailey, and Hailey’s fiancé, Mark Landcaster. They take her away to unlikely protectors who will keep her safe and he can never find her.
Slade Landcaster has better things to do than babysit some scared little mouse, but as long as she stays out of his way they will get along fine. With his roommate, Hunter, along for the ride, they protect the abused but curvy beauty that was thrust into their care.
With Clair running from one man, how is she supposed to feel safe with two hulking men? A better question is—why does she desire them instead of fearing them?
As she heals and the more time spent together, she may be in trouble of losing her heart to the two men. Do they feel the same about her or is she just an unwanted house guest they are playing with and keeping safe until her abuser is gone for good?
And that his best friend has a crush on me.
And that I just moved in with them.
Oh, did I not mention we’re roommates?
I suppose it doesn’t matter. Fitzy has made it clear he’s not interested in me, even though the sparks between us are liable to burn our house down. I’m not the kind of girl who chases after a man, though, and I’m not about to start. I’ve got my hands full dealing with a new school, a sleazy professor, and an uncertain future. So if my sexy brooding roomie wises up and realizes what he’s missing?
He knows where to find me.
And that’s who Jake Connelly is. Harvard’s star forward is arrogant, annoying, and too attractive for his own good. But fate is cruel—I require his help to secure a much-coveted internship, and the sexy jerk isn’t making it easy for me.
I need Connelly to be my fake boyfriend.
For every fake date…he wants a real one.
Which means this bad girl is in big trouble. Nothing good can come from sneaking around with Jake Connelly. My father would kill me, my friends will revolt, and my post-college career is on the line. But while it’s getting harder and harder to resist Jake’s oozing sex appeal and cocky grin, I refuse to fall for him.
That’s the one risk I’m not willing to take.