Tuesday, February 9, 2016
A.J. Pine, Autumn Jones Lake, Bobbi Ruggiero, Gwen Hayes,
Jenny Holiday, Karen Booth, Rachel Cowell
(Romance Rewind #2)
Publication date: February 9th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Sneak a Peek at a couple of books from this anthology:
Excerpt from Save a Prayer by Karen Booth
I sucked in a deep breath through my nose and willed a smile onto my face. I was over Graham. I’d worked my way through it. And enduring thirty seconds of screeching girls at the newsstand was enough of a test for now.
I wound my way down to baggage claim, fetching my suitcase then out to the curb to wait for my ride to the city from an unknown volunteer for the Music Revolution Festival. Most parents would probably not be pleased by my new job, but mine were. Well, my mum was. I wasn’t sure about my dad. An award-winning photo-journalist, he hadn’t taken a picture in six months, nor had he spoken a word. Not since the stroke that left him paralyzed on one side of his body and unable to speak. Standing there, I couldn’t escape the self-doubt—first time in America, on my own, wanting to show Graham that I was not only over him, I was okay with what had happened, hoping like hell I could live up to even a fraction of my dad’s brilliance. Photographing Graham’s band left me at a serious disadvantage.
Just then a dodgy looking sky blue car wobbled past me at the curb, sputtering black fumes when it came to a stop. Dozens of band stickers blanketed the bumper—Joy Division, The Smiths, Blondie, and Tears for Fears were only the start. Out popped a girl with curly blonde hair, more blue eyeliner than I’d ever seen, and an arm loaded down with black rubber bracelets. “You must be Angie Dawson. I was told to look for a British redhead.”
My vision narrowed on her. “That’s me.”
She held out her hand to shake mine. “Welcome to Philly. I’m Darla. But people call me Gigi. I’m supposed to drive you to the hotel and make sure you have everything you need while you’re here.”
“Brilliant. Thanks.” I picked up my suitcase and followed her to the car. “The redhead I get, but what exactly makes me look British?”
Gigi shrugged, opening the car boot with her key. “I have no idea. People say stupid things, don’t they? Luckily you were the only ginger out here.”
“Ginger, huh? I take it you’ve been to England?”
“Yep. That’s what you call redheads, right?”
I nodded as she closed the trunk. “Absolutely.”
We climbed inside the car and after several attempts she got the engine running again. “First time in the States?”
“It is. I’ve been trying to get a magazine job as a photographer for over a year, and luckily, the guy at Music Maker got sacked after he was arrested for a fight in a pub. I just got hired.”
Gigi pulled onto a motorway and put in a cassette that started out with The Cutter by Echo and the Bunnymen, one of my favorite songs. With the windows rolled down, the early afternoon heat swirled our hair every which way while the car rattled as if it was held together with chewing gum and a few odd screws. “I’m just a runner,” she shouted over the music and road noise. “But I’m learning how to run sound and lights. I really want to go on the road with a band at some point. I’m such a huge music fan. I can’t think of anything more exciting than that.”
“Cool.” I didn’t offer more. Gigi would have to learn on her own how unexciting it could be to go on the road with a band, although touring with Banks Forest was likely a much higher-class affair now than it had been in the early days.
“Oh!” Gigi exclaimed. “I forgot. I have a message for you in my bag from the editor at Music Maker. They called for you at the production office this morning. It’s right in that side pocket. You can go ahead and get it out.”
I leaned down and slipped my hand into the outside compartment of Gigi’s black LeSport Sac. My heart picked up as I unfolded the paper. For the first time since I’d landed, I was thrilled by the prospects ahead, rather than dreading what would happen if things didn’t go right. I was finally a working photographer. I’d gotten a call at a major music festival production office from my employer.
For: Angie Dawson
From: Oliver Harvey, 7/11/85
Banks Forest and their road manager will meet you in hotel bar at 7 pm to discuss the band’s schedule.
And there it was. I was officially on my way. Back into the sights of Graham Whiting.
Excerpt from Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes
Jacob’s eyes never rest. He glances at me briefly before scanning the swarm of disgruntled travelers around us. The logical side of my brain says that he is just being careful. People on the run have to be hypersensitive to their surroundings. The illogical poster-girl-of-a-train-wreck side thinks he just wants to get away from me as soon as possible and is looking for a break in the crowds.
“Where were you going?” he asks. Probably to be polite.
“Florida. You?” Stupid girl. “Never mind. That was dumb. You can’t tell me where you are going or where you’ve been or probably even what you had for breakfast yesterday.”
“It doesn’t really matter where I was going,” he says, glossing over my sarcasm like he always does. “Nobody’s getting out of Detroit alive tonight.” He looks at his watch. “I guess I should try to book a room.”
I follow his wrist back down to his side with my gaze. God, nothing has changed. Even his wrists turn me on. Focus, Becky. “Good luck with that. Hotel rooms are going to be scarce.”
“I suppose you already have one.”
I shrug. “You know me.”
“You look good, Becky.”
Though they are kind, the words bite into my tender heart with razor sharp teeth. They are so tame compared to the last time he told me how I looked. When he said he couldn’t get enough of my hot little body. That I made him so hard every time he looked at me. My face was forever etched in his mind.
Now I look “good.”
I smile through the jagged pain because that is what you do when it hurts to breathe. “Thanks. I don’t suppose we could grab a cup of coffee, could we?” I don’t know why I said that. Why did I just say that?
“I don’t know if that’s a good idea. It’s risky.”
Two years. I have missed him every day for two years. “We’re random strangers in a crowded airport today. Is it really so dangerous?”
He rubs his chin, scratching at the light dusting of stubble. “You’re not a random stranger, Becks.”
I shrug. “Nobody here knows that.” What if he says yes? What would it be like to forget, just for one hour, all the things that haunt me? Just take a step out of time. “It’s coffee, not a dark alley. I’ll help you make calls to hotels first.”
I don’t wait for an answer; I just grab his hand and pull. He’ll follow. He’ll roll his eyes, act a little miffed, and go along with me just like he always used to. Because he didn’t say no. He said he didn’t know if it was a good idea. Semantics are everything with a guy like Jacob Stone.
Twenty minutes later, after fruitless phone calls for a room, Jacob takes a long pull from his coffee and sits back in his chair, defeated. “How did you score a room? Wait, don’t tell me. You reserved it days ago, didn’t you?”
“The storm isn’t a surprise. They’ve been tracking it for a while.”
Jacob looks out the windows across the terminal. “It looks like a hurricane out there. It’s getting dark, too.”
The airport is stuffy and hot, with the temperature rising as the untraveling passengers’ moods get hotter. “I know you’ll say no, but you are welcome to crash in my room. It’s better than the floor at the gate.”
“That’s a bad idea.” Jake shuts down, just like he always did. That means no.
Now is make-or-break for what’s left of my pride. The interlude was pleasant, in its own way, but I am a realist now. A step out of time can’t take me a mile. I’ve learned the hard way that real life encroaches too soon. He’s broken my heart for the last time. I won’t beg again. This time, I’ll be the one to walk away.
“Suit yourself.” I push away from the table, slinging my carryon over my shoulder. “I’ll leave a key for you at the desk, Mr. McDonald, in case you should change your mind.” I walk just past the table and stop without turning around. “Take care of yourself.”
I miss you.
And that is that.
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