VBT & #Giveaway: Return of the Runaway Bride by Nancy Fraser
@GoddessFish, @Archaeolibrary, @nfraserauthor,
#Steamy, #Contemporary, #Romance,
Five years earlier, Emily Bennett ran out on Chase Michaels on the eve of their wedding. At twenty-two, she wanted more than the island of Last Chance Beach could offer. Intent on making a name for herself as a world-class journalist, she left to take a job with a big city newspaper. Chase Michaels left Last Chance Beach not long after having his heart broken and joined the Coast Guard in an effort to rebuild his life. Returning four years later for a family emergency, he decided to stay and go into business with his best friend. Emily’s returning as well. Not as the journalist she’d hoped to be but as a bestselling romance author. One of her books is about to be made into a movie, and filming will take place on Last Chance Beach and in the mainland town of Summerville. Will Emily’s return give them a second chance at the love they once shared? Or, will her ‘other’ reason for leaving put a wedge between three best friends that can’t be healed by time or intention?
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Vernon Patterson, his new, much younger wife Tiffany, and Chloe stood off to one side of the yard, deep in conversation with the mayor and the head of the island’s historical society. From what she’d heard in passing, Emily realized they were discussing the coup of attracting a movie production to the area.
“You know,” her mother whispered, stepping close to her side, “It wouldn’t hurt to let them know it’s your book that made all their bragging possible.”
“I’m not quite there yet, mom. I’m still fielding questions about what I’ve been doing and how long I’m staying.”
“Let me guess. That last question came from Chloe Patterson.”
Emily pressed her fingers to her lips to hold in her laugh. “Yes.”
“No doubt she’s worried you’ll interrupt her pursuit of Chase—even though I’m pretty sure he’s not the least bit interested.”
“She’s got nothing to worry about,” Emily said, wishing she sounded more confident than she felt. “Chase and I are cutting one another a wide berth.”
The look her mother gave her was less than subtle.
“I’d better go inside and get another vegetable tray,” her mother said. “Why don’t you straighten out the food table and check the cooler while I’m gone?”
Emily gave a smart salute. “Yes, Ma’am.”
She’d gone no more than a few feet in the direction of the picnic tables and makeshift bar, when a large, warm hand gently grasped her arm. Without turning, she said, “Hello there, Jared. I was wondering when you’d finally come to visit.”
Jared’s familiar chuckle rang in her ear. “I wasn’t sure what to make of your return. Or, of how it was going to affect my best friend. I thought I’d give it a few days to see if I’d need to talk him off a ledge.”
Emily swallowed the dryness in her throat, and asked, “And did you? Need to talk him down?”
“No, apparently he’s doing just fine. Or so he says.”
She turned to face him then, meeting his green gaze. “I didn’t come home to cause anyone heartache, Jared. Least of all Chase. I came to see family, to straighten a few things out with friends.”
“And have you? Straightened things out?”
“So far, so good. It’s a work in progress.”
“I would imagine it is. Heaven knows it was for me. First, you left, taking away the only true confidant I’ve ever had.”
His words stalled and Emily realized how much he was struggling. Sometimes secrets ate you up inside.
“And, then, Chase left,” she said softly.
“That was a relief of sorts,” he admitted. “It kept me from having to admit I was part of the reason you left. And it put things in perspective for me.”
“Well, I’m back now, if you need to talk.”
“Thank you. You’re a good friend. Or, at least you were,” he teased.
“And I still am.”
3 out of 5 (good)
RETURN OF THE RUNAWAY BRIDE is part of the Last Chance Beach Romance series but can also be read as a standalone. In this one, Emily left Chase at the altar five years ago but has now returned to try and mend bridges. Not only is it time, but she also needs to let her friends and family know what she's been up to as her novel is being made into a movie, and no one knows.
This is a well paced novel that not only gives the reader what is going on now, but also allows them to catch up on what happened five years ago, and why. There is a good group of characters, both main and supporting, that help to move the storyline along.
The only problem I found was that sometimes the time would jump from one sentence to another. I found this to be slightly jolting, but became accustomed to it as the author's writing style.
A great summer story about second-chance romance and recommended by me.
** same worded review will appear elsewhere **
* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *
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Finding Your Writing/Working Groove
With summer in full swing, we all would rather be out in the sunshine than stuck behind our desk. Well, almost everyone. I’m perfectly happy in my air-conditioned condo. However, family often drag me out to the lake cottage, or to an impromptu BBQ. Sometimes, you just have to say “no”. But, when you can’t, you have to be disciplined the moment you get back to the desk.
Here are few simple suggestions that can apply both to the writer and to the busy, working parent.
Make Lists. Whether it’s first thing in the morning before anyone else is out of bed or last thing the night before, prepare a list of the things you need to do the next day. Whether work related or writing related, a list of tasks gives you a starting point for everything you need to accomplish within a given time period. Keeping yourself organized is key to finding the time to write. As well, there’s an added benefit in the satisfaction of ticking something off the list once it’s completed. Accomplishing even a few small tasks can keep you motivated to move onto the next.
Celebrate those Small Achievements. Set smaller, more easily attainable goals that can be completed throughout the day. Then, once that goal is attained, reward yourself. Maybe with nothing more than an extra cup of coffee, a short walk, a few minutes to read. Just be careful to balance the celebrating with the actual work.
Stick to the Easy Stuff. A long list of tasks can be overwhelming. Unless there are specific time requirements, begin with the smaller tasks first. Clearing off half the list will not only encourage further completion, but also will help prepare you for the bigger tasks that still lie ahead.
Mix Things Up. Don’t follow the same routine every day. Boredom is a killer of accomplishment. If your usual routine calls for writing in the morning and errands in the afternoon, change it up. Reverse the order. Run those errands and then return to your computer with yet another task removed from the dreaded list. Mix up your writing habits as well. If there’s a task you ordinarily put off, e.g., the dreaded blurb, do that first. The rest will seem easy.
Group Work. Whether it’s a writing critique group, or the assistance of your family, don’t get stuck in the rut of thinking you have to do everything yourself. Ask for help if necessary. When the task of making the evening meal comes up, don’t assume you have to do all the cooking. One of the things I enjoy most is cooking and yet I welcome the help of others even if it’s something as simple as prepping a salad. It’s the same with writing. Brainstorming with others can lift the burden of a difficult scene and cut your writing time in half.
Evening Recap. It’s always nice to sit back with an evening cup of tea, put your feet up and review those lists. Rejoice in what you accomplished, reconfigure what didn’t work out so well. Gear down. Don’t go to bed thinking about the chapter you didn’t finish or the blurb you didn’t write. Or the load of laundry that’s still sitting in the hamper. Instead, occupy your mind with something that will relax you. Play a word game, read a few chapters of someone else’s book, watch something totally frivolous on television.
Sometimes the best way to improve productivity is to think less about being productive.
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NANCY FRASER—Jumping Across Romance Genres with Gleeful Abandon—is an Amazon Top 100 and Award-Winning author who can’t seem to decide which romance genre suits her best. So, she writes them all.
Like most authors, Nancy began writing at an early age, usually on the walls and with crayons or, heaven forbid, permanent markers. Her love of writing often made her the English teacher’s pet which, of course, resulted in a whole lot of teasing. Still, it was worth it.
Nancy has published over thirty-five books in full-length, novella, and short format. When not writing (which is almost never), Nancy dotes on her five wonderful grandchildren and looks forward to traveling and reading when time permits. Nancy lives in Atlantic Canada where she enjoys the relaxed pace and colorful people.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/nfraserauthor @nfraserauthor
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Nancy-Fraser/e/B004AOL61Y/
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