Title: Soldier of Love by Allie Boniface
Hometown Heroes Series Book Five
Publisher: DFM Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 268 pages
Franny Thompson has owned a bed and breakfast in Lindsey Point for the last five years, ever since a family tragedy left her broken. Running The Hideaway has been good therapy, but this thirty-year old doesn’t have the slightest idea about dating, fashion, or men. When a lonely soldier comes to town in need of a place to live, she offers him an empty room to rent, never dreaming he’s about to change her world.
Heath Garrick has spent the last 17 years as an active duty solider, but when he retires from the Army, he finds himself plagued by PTSD and no place to call home, until he moves to Lindsey Point and Franny offers him a room. Franny is quirky and naive, everything he’s never wanted in a woman – and everything he might just need.
As Franny and Heath find comfort in each other’s friendship, a powerful attraction develops. But when a national magazine chooses The Hideaway for a makeover, they are thrust into the spotlight. For Franny, it’s a dream come true. For Heath, it’s the worst kind of trouble. Can two lonely souls help each other find love and hope again, or are some battle scars too deep ever to heal?
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Franny looked at the lighthouse, and the early evening light illuminated her profile. Cute, button nose, full lips, crazy curls. Heath’s gaze dropped before he could help it. Something stirred in his groin. Keep your distance, he told himself for the second time in days. Last thing this sweet thing needs is you messing with her.
But the more he looked at her, the calmer he felt, as if his nightmare from earlier had happened a hundred years ago. Or maybe not at all.
“Would you like some ice cream?” she asked in the stillness. “There’s a really good stand about a quarter mile up the road. Benny’s Place.”
Dinner in the backyard. Simple conversation. A gorgeous sunset, a kind woman, and ice cream at a local place overlooking the bay. Something splintered inside Heath, a longing to enjoy it all without feeling as if he stood outside it, watching and yearning and not belonging. His feet jounced on the ground. His pulse stuttered. He had no control over when the anxiety came, when the tremors or the memories would explode from nowhere and jolt his senses into overdrive.
“I think I’ll take a raincheck on the ice cream.”
Franny looped her arm through the picnic basket. “Sure. Another time.”
“Thank you for dinner,” he said as he stood up. “Everything was perfect. Especially the company.” Then, on impulse, he bent down and kissed her cheek.
He expected it to feel like kissing a sister, or his aunt, courteous and nothing more. What he didn’t expect was the rush of hot desire that moved through him or the way Franny turned so that her lips met his. Without thinking, Heath snaked one arm around her waist and pulled her tight against his chest. The picnic basket fell to the ground. For one long, amazing moment, his tongue took possession of her mouth, and she melted in his arms. A tiny whimper left her lips…
Allie Boniface is the USA Today best-selling author of over a dozen novels, including the Cocktail Cruise, Hometown Heroes, and Pine Point series. Her books are set in small towns and feature emotional, thought-provoking, sensual romance with relatable characters you’ll know and love.
A graduate of the University of Rochester and Case Western Reserve University, Allie currently lives in a small town in the beautiful Hudson Valley of New York with her husband and their two furry felines. When she isn’t teaching high school English, she likes to travel, lose herself in great music, or go for a long run and think about her next small town story.