We’d love for you to join us in celebrating the release of A HOT WINTER by Author C.J. Lake!
*Story contains explicit/steamy scenes that are intended for mature readers.
Emma Slate married her high school sweetheart at twenty and lost him at twenty-two. Now she has built a cozy, safe life for herself that includes everything but romance. When Matt, a handsome young contractor, begins work at her house, she tries to ignore the spark between them and keep her feelings in check.
Matt Winter should know better than to get involved with a girl who is moving out of state in a few short weeks. Especially one who is so guarded. There are so many reasons why he shouldn’t go there…so why can’t they stay away from each other?
A sizzling love story from the author of Constructing Us.
Matt kept his tone casual as he asked, “So where did Parker take you last night?” Emma shot him a surprised look, and he explained, “I happened to see the personalized plate on my way out.”
“Oh. We just went to a little French bistro in Newton,” she said offhandedly, reaching out to touch the needles of the tree directly in front of her. “I’ve been there with Andy before.”
Nodding, Matt kept his eyes fixed on Emma’s profile. “And you had fun?” he asked.
“I guess,” she said with a noncommittal shrug.
“How were his table manners?” At that, she angled her head to eye him askance. “You know,” Matt explained, “was he getting sauce everywhere or…chewing with his mouth open?”
She gave a little laugh then turned back to the trees. “Uh, nothing comes to mind, so I’d say his manners were fine.”
“Well…did he pick up the tab?”
Matt stepped closer to her, leaving almost no space between them, nearly touching her back with his chest. “Did he pull out your chair?” he asked, his voice dropping lower. Being this close to Emma cast an erotic spell over him.
“I, uh, don’t remember,” Emma said, her voice cracking a little, making him think she felt it too. He was painfully tempted to run his hands around her waist right now, to pull her flush against him, to stop pretending.
Suddenly, Emma turned. “You seem very worried about Phil Parker’s love life.”
“Right,” Matt said, returning her sarcasm.
Giving him a mocking smile, she placed her palm on her chest. “Really–your concern for your fellow man is…heartwarming.”
“No, it’s not,” Matt stated flatly. “I couldn’t care less about the guy.”
“Hmm, seems like it,” she remarked, before rounding the corner into the next aisle.
“Look–it’s on the male DNA to size up the competition,” Matt explained to her back.
At that, Emma squinted at him. “How is Phil Parker competition? There’s no contest. You’re my friend. Phil Parker is a virtual stranger.”
“A stranger?” Matt echoed, acting nonchalant about the implication–even as a possessive sense of relief spread through his chest. So she hadn’t slept with Parker last night. Thank God. The thought of Emma touching another guy, or letting a guy touch her, had become painful to him.
“Pretty much,” she went on matter-of-factly. “He picked me up, took me to the restaurant, we made small talk about the kids. He told me all about his divorce–with very little prompting from me–and then drove me home. See? A stranger, more or less.”
“I see,” Matt said after a long moment, quietly assessing her…
C.J. Lake is a storyteller who is passionate about art, surfing, and skiing/snowboarding. Residing near the coast of Massachusetts, C.J. is currently working on a new book. Meanwhile, readers can check out her first novel, Constructing Us, which is the story of Andy and Tragan.