Opposites attract in the conclusion to the Summer Heat duet. Forever with Him by Stacy Travis, available now!
Will vacation love survive in the real world? Or will life be our undoing?
My French fling with Chris was only supposed to last two weeks…
I was bad at relationships, worse at love. So I was leaving it all behind—the French wine, the sunsets, the movie star romance. It was temporary. We were temporary. Happily ever afters didn’t happen in the real world.
At least not in mine. I had a responsible schedules and life rules to obey. I was that girl.
Then Chris hopped on a plane and moved across the country for me. He threw out all my rules. Behind his hot-sexy-handsome was a man who was serious about love. He saw through my excuses and called me on my crap. And he only wanted me.
But when he got an offer he couldn’t refuse, he was back to his Hollywood lifestyle, and I was left texting across time zones and waiting for the occasional jet-lagged rendezvous. Maybe his panoramic views, personal assistants and private planes were his real love.
I don’t always ask for what I want, and maybe that’s why I don’t get it. But this time I’m asking.
Even if it means risking it all.
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Check out this excerpt from The Summer of Him:
I desperately didn’t want to be the kind of person who was afraid to eat dinner alone or who couldn’t make a mistake without crying. I also hadn’t slept very much and that could make a person tearful, I reminded myself, working hard to add sympathetic self to my independent self.
People walked by, oblivious to me, happily talking to one another in fast bursts of French that I wasn’t going to pick up just by sitting around cafés and listening. And definitely not in a matter of hours. No one expected that, so I needed to chill the heck out.
“Thank God you slowed down. I didn’t want to chase you all over the city to give you these,” I heard from a male voice to my left. The English was a salve to my aching Anglophile ears.
I looked up and saw the guy in the baseball hat, the one who’d seemed irritated in line behind me. He looked a little less irritated now, and I had the wherewithal to focus on his face, which was attractive. Really attractive, almost to the point of being too handsome, if that’s possible. I blinked a few times to be certain he was real.
He held out the three peaches I’d attempted to buy, only now they were in a plastic bag with a sticker on them, properly weighed and priced. “The cashier was going to wait and let you go back and weigh them, but I guess you didn’t understand what she was telling you… anyway, no one should be without peaches.”
I felt so overwhelmed by this act of kindness that a new wave of tears formed, ready to spring forth. I fought them back, trying to maintain my composure, because crying over peaches wasn’t something I was prepared to explain to a stranger. After a couple seconds of hard swallowing and blinking, I croaked out my gratitude.
“Oh. Wow. That’s so nice. Thank you.” I took the peaches and awkwardly stuffed them into my bag. He handed me the cookies and water too. “You bought all my stuff?” I was shocked that a stranger could be so nice to me. And, once I took a closer look at him, an exceptionally great-looking stranger. My heart started beating a little faster and I felt a blush creep over my cheeks.
“Well… yeah. A person’s gotta stay hydrated. And you seemed like you were having a rough day.”
“Yeah, that’s an understatement.” I stopped myself before I unloaded my tale of two warring selves, because I doubted he was super interested. “Anyway, thank you. I don’t usually fall apart at the checkout counter… but I panicked in the face of angry shoppers.”
He nodded, his lips tugging to the side and relaxing into a smile. Yes, he was definitely attractive.
It’s a rough world out there, and we all sometimes need a good, romantic beach read, even if we can’t make it to the beach. I’ve spent many lazy days walking the streets of Paris and other gorgeous European cities, and if I’m doing it right, I’m bringing you a dash of romance and a vacay fantasy.
I can’t sit still, so when I’m not hiking, biking or running, I’m playing a very average game of tennis. Background music for writing undoubtedly features some U2, Lizzo, Billy Joel, Pink, Taylor Swift, and Led Zeppelin. Not necessarily in that order. And if I could only eat one food group, it would be cheese. Or wine. Or bread. Are those food groups? Whatever.
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