Title: Falling for Annabel
Series: The Reality Book Series #2
Author: Dina Haynes
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Release Date: July 2, 2021
She plants her hopes on a star. His heart is set on an enemy. Will he lose himself completely in the name of love?
Annabel Bakker, a “mail-order bride,” took a leap of faith that landed her in the middle of a tragic Hollywood story. Now she’s divorced and chasing the impossible notion of marrying a TV star. But sparks fly when she moves in with her new roommate, who’s a dead ringer for you-know-who…
Nick Longfellow’s life was aimless before he arrived in LA to live close to his older sister. And when Annabel moves in with him, his unexpected feelings for her push him into a career in which he shines. But work forces him to take a trip that splits them apart for months, leaving the perfect opportunity for her dream guy to swoop in.
He risks everything to make sense of a relationship that maintains a steady simmer on the back burner of their lives. When Annabel finally lifts her head from the celebrity mags to notice her dream man who was there all along, it might be too late.
Will time wait for Nick and Annabel to seal their hearts in happy-together-forever bliss?
Falling for Annabel, previously released as Annabel, is the heart-wrenching second novel in The Reality Book contemporary romance series. If you like intense connections, unique story concepts, with a few steamy scenes, then you’ll adore Dina Haynes’s emotional tale.
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“Hey, Nick. What’s going . . .?” She caught him playing his zombie act in the middle of the floor. “How long have you been staring at your phone?”
He snapped to as if from a dream. “Huh? Hey, listen to this, and tell me what it says.”
He played the message on speaker and watched as her features morphed into a horrific expression. For a second, he thought maybe the message was indeed different than what he’d heard ten times over and perhaps about a death in his family.
But then she yelled, “Are you freaking serious? Oh my God. BFD? BFD? Wha—? Since when—? How did—?”
“I auditioned yesterday. What’d it say?”
“You have to leave. Now! Do you even have a passport?”
With incredulity, he exclaimed, “I do!”
“Well, pack something. Let me help you. I’ll drive you to airport. We can talk on the way.”
She helped him put together a suitcase with almost every piece of clothing he owned, which wasn’t much. His cold-weather jacket and shoes took up the bulk of the space in a large duffel bag. An hour later, she sped them toward the freeway in her Prius, and he was thankful the traffic had died down.
“How, Nick?” The emotion behind her words made him nervous. Was she happy for him?
“I . . . a producer came into the shop a week ago and asked me to audition. I told Neesa about it the night we all had dinner, and next thing I know . . . I—I have no idea what to do once I get there.”
“They sent you an email with all the information. I looked it over. It explains everything, b—but not why you auditioned. You said you hated actors.”
They were both silent for a moment.
“This is huge,” she said.
She peered at his shadowed profile. “Let’s calm down. I don’t want to make you nervous or anything. You’re going to do fine. I’m sure of it.”
She did not sound certain. He wondered if maybe this was a mistake. Leaving her in LA. Alone with Jordon. For who knew how long.
“You promise to keep in touch?” he said. “I’ll probably have a ton of questions about acting and stuff.”
“I’m sure Neesa could answer them better than I can. I never got my big break, remember?”
Her tone carried an edge to it he didn’t like. “Hey, you’re not mad at me are you?”
Her mouth dropped open, and her face crumbled like she was about to cry. “No. No, Nick. This is the best news. I’m shocked. But I’m totally excited for you. This wasn’t your dream, but maybe it will turn into one. I mean, I’m living my dream. Sort of. I never would have gotten this close to Jordon acting in one episode of Paranormal. I just have to get past Talia and her bullshit.”
She still sounded angry, but no longer at him, which put him at ease.
Soon, she pulled the Prius off the exit for LAX. This was the fastest he’d seen her drive, but he wished she would slow down so he could get used to the idea of becoming an actor overnight and moving to Ireland for the next several weeks, months—he didn’t know for sure. Could be that once he got to set and they realized he wasn’t a real actor, they’d fire him. He might be back in a matter of days. He was instantly calmed by that scenario.
By the time she pulled up to the curb at the international terminal, he had a little over an hour to get through the security checkpoint and make his plane. She helped him unload his baggage and then thrust her arms around him. They held onto each other for what seemed an eternity before he dropped her to the ground. She stared at him, holding unspoken sentiments underneath the surface. He wished he knew what she was think—.
She crushed her lips into his.
He was stunned at first. Astonished at the firmness of her embrace and the enthusiastic way her tongue tangled with his. His knees went weak as he snatched the lead from her. He wanted to show her how much she meant to him, to imprint this kiss in her memory and leave her wanting him every second of every day he’d be gone.
When he finally pulled away, her eyes were heavy-lidded. She was drunk on him. Nick Longfellow.
He left her like that, feeling ten feet taller than before he’d gotten out of the car. What she did to him with that last look, though, was imprison his heart and swallow the key.
Dina Haynes cheated on her lackluster acting career in favor of doing more “character” work and has been writing romance ever since. She lives in the bustling city of Los Angeles where her priorities are French bulldogs, writing, coffee, wine, and cooking. She’s looking for social media friends, so follow her on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and her website at dinahaynes.com.