by Brighton Walsh
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Carina Press
Date of Publication: May 6, 2013
Olivia hates the singles scene, so when her best guy friend, Ian, offers to be her plus one to a series of weddings she has to attend, she agrees. Although she doesn't want to complicate their lifelong friendship, she can't pass up the chance to have a steady date without the dating drama. What she doesn't expect is to now find Ian so incredibly sexy.
When Ian sees his old friend Olivia dolled up for wedding #1, the boyhood crush he once nurtured transforms into smoldering attraction. It doesn't take long for their no-strings arrangement to turn physical. But as Olivia's desire to stay "just friends" becomes clear, Ian's feelings are deepening. In the time they have together, how will Ian convince Olivia that one plus one can make for a lifelong pair?
And now. Now, she was pressed against him as they danced, his hand touching her bare skin thanks to the low, open back of her dress. He held her close, closer than he ever had before, and even though she was two martinis into the night, she still found herself tongue-tied.
His fingers slowly slid up her back, following the line of her spine, and though she tried to hold it in, a shudder ran over her body. Her nipples hardened, and a tingle grew low in her belly. All from a single caress against her bare back. Jesus, if an innocent touch like that had her wet and ready to go, what would happen if he stroked her not so innocently?
She looked up into his eyes to find him staring directly at her. His eyes bounced over her face, no doubt taking in her heated cheeks, eyes heavy with desire, and parted lips. He pulled her close, and brought their clasped hands up toward her face. He brushed a single finger down the line of her jaw, and instead of moving away, swept his finger over her lips. It was scarcely a brush of skin on skin, but she moaned. It was low and breathy, and barely loud enough for her to hear, let alone Ian. Yet she knew the exact moment he did.
His eyes, scorching with a want she knew all too well, bored into hers.
“Liv.” He managed to convey so much want and need with that single word.
She swallowed, her throat suddenly dry, and tried to not sound breathless when she answered. “Yes?”
Ian’s finger was still on her lip, caressing it back and forth, and his focus switched between her mouth and her eyes. When he didn’t say anything more, she couldn’t take it any longer. Her tongue darted out, lightly brushing against his finger. With their eyes locked, she took the tip of his finger into her mouth and sucked gently.
“Jesus Christ.” It was a low rumble, spoken under his breath, but she heard it clearly. With a soft pop, she released his finger, her eyes imploring him.
If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
I’m a pro at answering this question because I get asked it at least twice a month by my kids. I would fly. And not Spiderman “flying”. I’m talking Superman here.
Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published.
There’s been so much along the way that’s been rewarding. Being able to tell my husband that I had an offer to publish. Getting an e-mail with the finalized cover. Seeing my book available for pre-order on Amazon and Barnes & Noble… It’s all been crazy and a little surreal.
Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
If you want a light-hearted, sexy read with a hot, nice hero and a heroine you don’t want to strangle. I should use that for a tagline, huh?
Do I have to pick just one? Stone-fired pizza.
What book are reading now?
I’m currently reading The Boyfriend App, a super cute YA novel.
What’s your favorite season/weather?
Fall. I love the colors and the crispness and that you get to break out your jeans and sweaters after months of shorts and tank tops.
What was your favorite children's book?
The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
Beach or Pool?
Oh, man. That’s a tough one. If you had said lake or pool, that’d be a no-brainer. Buuuuut I think I’ll go with beach. I can get a pool anywhere, but if I’m on a beach, I’m probably on vacation.
What is one book everyone should read?
Wonder by R.J. Palacio. I just read this with my eight-year-old and it was amazing. The message is so important, and one I think every parent—every person—needs to read.
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
I have a longer novella that will be out later this year in the annual Carina Press holiday anthology and a piece in an anthology coming out from Cleis Press in February 2014. I also have a novel (the first in a three part companion series) that I’m currently querying to agents, and a few other pieces on submission. Besides that, I have about four work-in-progresses that I hope to move forward with very, very soon.
Brighton Walsh is a storyteller at heart. Whether through words or pictures, she's been weaving tales for as long as she can remember. After decades of cultivating her writing, she finally decided to give life to the voices in her head and set forth to write her first novella. Love is her first love, and writing about it is a dream come true. When she's not writing, you can find her with her nose buried in a steamy book or partaking in some retail therapy. She lives in the Midwest with her swoony husband and two energetic kids who (fortunately) know nothing about the naughty things she puts down on paper.