Saturday, 23 July 2016

New Release Blog Stop: This Loving Feeling by Miranda Liasson

Samantha Rushford’s future looks bright: the high school art teacher is getting ready to leave Mirror Lake and move to Boston with her ambitious boyfriend, and she hopes a diamond ring is just around the corner. But her past still has a hold on her—especially the bittersweet memory of her rebellious ex, who kissed her passionately before he left town without a word.

Since then, Lukas Spikonos has parlayed his rebel ways into life as an up-and-coming recording artist. When he shows up for a surprise gig at the high school prom, Sam is more dumbstruck than starstruck—he used the words of a poem she wrote about their breakup to create a number one hit. But Lukas hasn’t returned just to impress students; he’s facing some real-life responsibilities and needs Sam’s help. But she has her own unresolved issues about the life she wants to lead. Will the music—and the pull of true love and family—put their hearts back in harmony?

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Lukas pulled out a chair. “Mind if I join you?”
She looked like she didn’t want him to. But she also looked miserable and he didn’t want to leave things that way.
Harris is a great guy,” Sam said. “He’s just under a lot of stress right now.”
He could have disputed that but then she’d make him leave. So instead he said, “You don’t have to explain anything to me.”
He’s trying a big Wall Street fraud case. It’s really stressful but he feels like he’s got to do his time in the prosecutor’s office so he can be known as someone who fights corruption.”
That’s honorable,” Lukas said. He mentally patted himself on the back because he’d somehow managed to keep the sarcasm out of his voice.
And I’m not bingeing out on ice cream because I’m miserable or confused. I’m just really hungry.”
Great,” he said. “Ice cream is the perfect food. Lots of calcium and vitamin D and all that.”
Exactly. I think my body’s craving calcium.”
His body was craving something else that he didn’t dare show. So he rubbed his hands around the tub of ice cream to thaw it out quicker.
Don’t look at me like that,” she said.
Like what?” Was he looking at her all lusty-like? Like he wanted to ravish her? Because that’s what he felt like doing. And he wasn’t sorry, either. But he tried to be a gentleman. “Like I’m judging you? I’m not. Relationships are complicated.” That sounded smart, but what did he know? He avoided them as fastidiously as he did expired cans of food.
No, like—wolfish. Like you’re thinking of sex.”
Busted again. “I nearly always think of sex.” And how it would be with her. How it was, a very long time ago. Until he ended it. Stupid, stupid him.
Even in the wash from the pale bluish pool lights, he saw her blush. He said hurriedly, “But don’t take it personally. I’m a guy, that’s what we do.” He’d just insulted his entire sex as Neanderthals to cover up the fact that he was thinking of her. Only her.
He was startled to realize he wanted to comfort her. Make her smile. Take her beautiful face in his hands and feel the softness of her skin, run his thumb along the soft pillow of her lower lip. Then kiss her. She would taste sweet and cold like the ice cream with a trace of chocolate. Perfect.
Trust me, Samantha. I’m not looking for a relationship.”
That look is more like you want a fling.”
Was the Pope Catholic? He shrugged his shoulders. “You’re not a fling kind of woman.” He flicked his eyes up, catching her off guard. “Are you?” He considered the end results of a quick, lusty affair. Getting her out of his system for good. Finally killing the holdover from his youthful fantasy. Reality couldn’t possibly be as good as how he’d built her up in his mind.
No.” She dropped the spoon into the ice cream and he picked it up and took a bite.
Dammit. “Then we’re clear on that,” he said. “But that doesn’t make you any safer from me.” Whoa, where had that come from? Maybe Harris’s idiocy had made him bold. Or his own. Or maybe just sitting across from her had stirred him. After all, the heart wants what it wants. His had always wanted her and he expected it always would.

Miranda Liasson loves to write stories about courageous but flawed characters who find love despite themselves, because there’s nothing like a great love story. And if there are a few laughs along the way, even better! She’s a former Golden Heart winner who writes series romance for Entangled Publishing and lighthearted contemporary romance for Montlake Publishing. She lives in the Midwest with her husband, three kids, and Posey, a rescue cat with attitude.