This book was so much fun – check it out below and then run to get your own copy 🙂
by Coleen Kwan
Releasing March 14, 2016
He wasn’t what she was expecting…
Derek Carmichael has harbored a secret crush on his best friend’s older sister for years, but she’s always been out of his reach. Now that Hannah is back in their hometown and newly single, suddenly the five-year age gap doesn’t seem so huge. But convincing her to see him as more than just the kid she used to know is another story.
Hannah Willmett can’t believe how grown-up Derek Carmichael has become. The troubled kid from her youth has turned into a sexy, successful TV celebrity, but Hannah’s wary of his player past and the rampant rumors connecting him to beautiful socialites. Still, she can’t help but give in when their attraction reaches a boiling point.
Trying to keep their fling a secret from her overprotective brother is one thing, but when Hannah finds herself unexpectedly expecting, her life is thrown upside down. She and Derek may be becoming parents together, but that’s no basis for a happily-ever-after.
“Hey, pecan pie.” Derek beamed as he lifted the pie dish from the cooler. “You made it for me?”
“Just my way of saying thanks.”
“There are other ways of saying thanks.” His gaze drifted to her lips, leaving her in no doubt what he had in mind. “Ways just as sweet and tasty as pecan pie.”
Her trigger-happy desire surged again as she imagined his lips on hers. “God, Derek, I thought we were keeping things platonic.”
“I thought so too, but you brought pecan pie.”
“Pecan pie? That’s a turn on?”
“Well, yeah. That, and those shorts you’re wearing.” His gaze lowered to the denim cutoffs hugging her hips. “I think you put on those itty-bitty shorts on purpose just to torture me, didn’t you?”
She gulped. “It’s a hot day, and they were the only shorts I had.” Liar. She had other, more modest shorts, but for some reason she’d chosen these tight-fitting cutoffs with the frayed hem. Again, she blamed her subconscious.
He snickered at her, and she knew she wasn’t fooling anyone. “You’re right. It is a hot day. In fact, it’s so hot I think I need to do this.” He stretched his arm behind his neck, gripped his T-shirt, and pulled it off in one swoop. Tossing aside the T-shirt, he stretched out in the sun. “Ah, yeah. That feels so much better.”
Her mouth fell open, and she might have made a choking sound. Her eyeballs felt like they were on stalks as she gawked at Derek’s naked torso. What a magnificent sight. Sunlight bounced off his smooth pecs and bulging biceps. He didn’t have an ounce of fat on him. Hard, broad shoulders narrowed to lean hips showcased by his low-slung jeans.
He rubbed his chest, drawing her attention to the trail of fine, dark hair that tracked down the center of his body. “What’s the matter, babe?”
Babe. Heat seeped through her pores. Just one “babe” from him, and she was already melting.
“Uh, n-nothing,” she managed to stutter. For the life of her, she still couldn’t tear her eyes away from him.
“See something you like?”
She was almost panting now. Dammit, he was so devilishly tempting, but she was not going to cave in.
“Yes, I do.” She leaned toward him, slow and deliberate, until his eyes widened and he licked his lips in anticipation. Then she stretched her arm across him, brushing against his naked chest, and grabbed a bottle of iced tea. “This is what I’d like.”
She twisted the cap off and tipped a deep gulp of liquid down her throat. When she lowered the bottle, Derek was grinning at her.
“Nice move. You play hard.”
Her blood fizzed like she’d drunk champagne. It was such fun teasing and flirting with Derek. It made her realize she wasn’t old after all and that Derek brought something out of her that no one else did.
“You didn’t think I’d swoon at your feet just because you bared your chest, did you?”
“A guy can hope.”
I think I was expecting the baby part of this to be the big stumbling block for them but that doesn’t come up until must later in the book. The beginning is the back and forth for Hannah & her feelings for Derek. I can kinda see where she’s coming from because she’s known him since he was barely a teenager and she was in a motherly role with her brother at that point so that would have meant she saw Derek as the same. Now she’s coming out of a bad marriage with an immature guy so it’ll be hard for her to see Derek as mature, not a kid. But she’s definitely not giving him enough credit 🙂 Derek has done a lot of growing up over the years but he never outgrew his crush on Hannah … and now he has the chance to act on it. He’s just got to convince her that he’s all man.
This is another of those stories where their issues are caused by their lack of communication – making assumptions, not talking and reacting with emotion. If they just got over themselves and talked it would have been a much shorter book (but where is the fun in that 🙂 ). Hannah is very caught up in what she “should” be doing and how it will look to others that she forgets to ask herself what she wants to do. And because of Derek’s childhood he still has some issues with acceptance, regardless of how successful he’s been since he left town. I feel bad for him but that causes a lot of his issues with Hannah because he reacts with his heart instead of his head whenever he feels unwanted.
I know that for some people the communication issue is a no-go so I want to warn you now. I’m usually on the not-a-fan side when it comes to that kind of story but for me Kwan handles it really well. I never got overly frustrated or wanted to smack them and I always consider that a win 🙂 It definitely isn’t everyone’s favorite storyline but her writing is so well done and that helps to make it work.
Coleen Kwan has been a bookworm all her life. At school English was her favorite subject, but for some reason she decided on a career in IT. After many years of programming, she wondered what else there was in life — and discovered writing. She loves writing contemporary romance and steampunk romance.
Coleen lives in Sydney, Australia with her partner and two children. When she isn’t writing she enjoys avoiding housework, eating chocolate, and watching TV shows like Criminal Minds and Masterchef.
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