Title: When Love Happens by Darcy Burke
Ribbon Ridge Series Book Three
Publisher: Avon Impulse
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 245 pages
In a town as small as Ribbon Ridge and with a family as large as the Archers, even the best kept secrets don’t stay buried for long…
Tori Archer is married…well, on paper anyway. She hasn’t actually seen her husband since the disastrous morning after their impulsive Vegas wedding. The memories of their intense passion may still make her weak in the knees, but Tori knows their marriage was a mistake.
After six months filming abroad, television producer Sean Hennessy wants nothing more than to track down his sexy, captivating wife and get her into bed… fast. So when his boss sends him to Oregon to persuade the famous Archer sextuplets-the former stars of a reality TV show-to do a reunion special, Sean sees the perfect chance to win Tori back.
Only, Tori wants nothing to do with him and is determined to push him away. But their attraction is as hot as ever and Sean will do anything to prove their relationship was more than just a fling…because he knows that when real love happens, it changes everything.
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Bollocks. Sean would rather jump right back on a plane to Europe and the shitfest he’d just left than go to Oregon. But maybe, just maybe, Mike didn’t mean what Sean thought he meant. Portland had a rousing film and television scene. There could be any number of projects in need of his services. “Why?”
Mike readjusted his sunglasses atop his dark blond head. “Dale came up with an idea he’s completely in love with and you’re the man to make it happen. He wants a ‘Where Are They Now’ special about the Archers. Following up on the sextuplets America fell in love with fifteen years ago is a great angle, but since one of them committed suicide, he thinks it’s ratings gold.”
Sean’s stomach dropped clear into the lower level parking garage. “I am not the man to make this happen, Mike.” In fact, he was about the last man who could make it happen.
Mike leaned his hip against the counter and crossed his arms. “Why not? You’re married to one of the sisters. You have the perfect in.”
Yeah, they were married, but for how long? The last time he’d talked to his wife—via email of course—she’d mentioned the D word. Sean hadn’t responded. He’d hoped they’d find a way to make it work, but after so many months apart, piss-poor communication, and then her suggestion that they just call it quits, he wasn’t sure he had any fight left in him.
“It’s not been much of a marriage. In fact, we’re probably splitting up.” Hell, they’d been split up since their wedding day. He’d seen her once, visiting her in San Francisco before he’d left for Europe, only to have her shut him out cold.
“If it’s not much of a marriage, why is her picture on your fridge?” Mike nodded toward a photo of Tori at the wedding chapel in Vegas. God, she was beautiful. Her auburn hair hung to her breasts in gentle waves that she’d painstakingly curled before the ceremony, her blue-green eyes shone with anticipation. Getting married had been a lark, but they’d both agreed it had felt right. And it had. Until the next morning . . .
“Because I’ve been in Europe the last six months.” Sean pulled the picture down and shoved it in a drawer. “Look, I know you think I can make this show happen with Tori, but I’ve got no advantage there.”
Their marriage had been over before it had even started. Her brother had killed himself the morning after their wedding, and she’d been understandably devastated. Her grief had completely eclipsed their joy and robbed her of any desire to make their marriage work. Fast forward seven months and it was time to call it what it was: a mistake.
Mike uncrossed his arms and took another drink of beer. “I’m sorry things aren’t working out with you guys, but you know Dale won’t give a shit. He’s got a hard-on for this special. You know how he is when he’s got his mind set on something.”
Yeah, he did. Dale was an utterly immovable object. As well as a massive wanker. “What happens if I don’t deliver?” When, not if.
Mike glanced out the window and when his gaze returned to Sean’s, it held a glimmer of regret. “I’ll have to let you go. As it is, I have to let someone go, and it’s between you and Hollis.”
“Hey, I’ve got seniority,” Sean said. Hollis had only been with the company a little over a year. “Just let her go. It’s a no brainer, right?” She was a bundle of ideas and energy, fairly fresh out of school, and absolutely bonkers.
“It is for me—I’d choose you in a heartbeat. She’s a micromanaging nightmare. But it isn’t up to me. You’re both getting projects that are do or die. Whoever delivers first or best gets to keep their job.”
Do or die. No ambiguity there.
Darcy Burke is the USA Today bestselling author of hot, action-packed historical and sexy, emotional contemporary romance. Darcy wrote her first book at age 11, a happily-ever-after about a swan addicted to magic and the female swan who loved him, with exceedingly poor illustrations.
A native Oregonian, Darcy lives on the edge of wine country with her guitar-strumming husband, their two hilarious kids-who each seem to have inherited the writing gene in some form-and two Bengal cats. In her “spare” time Darcy is a serial volunteer enrolled in a 12-step program where one learns to say “no,” but she keeps having to start over. Her happy places are Disneyland and Labor Day weekend at the Gorge.
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