Genre: Contemporary Romance
Can tragedies have a happy ending in Storybook Lake?
Every town has one—a mean girl, hell-bent on taking down everything in her path—and Danielle Ranier played the role to a tee.
She broke up Storybook Lake’s most beloved couple and to save herself from a lifetime of lectures on morality, she hopped on the first plane out of town.
Six years, one child, and a big secret later, she’s back, fleeing from her abusive husband, who isn’t quite willing to set her free. Now on trial for a murder she didn’t commit, Simon Hunter, the only man she’s ever loved is offering her a lifetime of love and security.
If she could only reveal the secrets long-held inside her, a family that never was might finally come together . . .
How it all started.
Since the moment I first noticed boys in fifth grade, Simon Hunter was the boy I saw myself growing old with. He had the best smile, the most expressive honey-colored eyes, and a way with people that made an entire town love him. Even when he didn’t know it, he was everything to me. Any minute I could sneak into his presence was a minute I savored and cherished.
When we got around to the business of being adults, our schedules seldom coordinated, but we spent most Fridays together. I’d skipped out on the last three, wanting him to see what it would be like without me. I wanted him to miss me with a desperate passion.
The missing only happened on my end, and I had the phone log to prove it. As it went to voice mail, I glared at my phone and left my tenth message…a pitiful, I-miss-you-please-call-me-and-let-me-know-you’re-okay kind of message. Since high school, he’d been my reason for waking up in the morning, the hero in the dreams I had every night, and the focus of all the moments in between. And damn it. Friday was our day.
After a quick makeup check, I left my apartment, the one we’d planned to share up until a few months ago when he started making all those trips to LA with Gatlin. I kicked the jealousy away with the toe of my shoe against a rock on the sidewalk.
For three full blocks, I took my frustration out on chunks of concrete until I strolled past the bakery. It took every ounce of my will not to press my nose against the window to see if he’d decided to loiter inside while his sister worked, or if he’d just run in to get some free pastries. His car was parked out front, so I leaned against it for a few minutes, waiting…remembering the first time he kissed me…the way his hand cupped the side of my face, the brush of his lips so softly over mine. Had we been sixteen? Seventeen? It was a lifetime ago.
As an author, Melissa Shirley believes in fairytales, happily ever after, and destiny. Born and raised in Illinois, and a mother of eight, she lives with her husband and three youngest children in a quiet town in the southern part of the state where she spends her time writing and watching her children grow into the people she has always dreamed.
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The authors will be awarding a digital copy of both books to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour: