Hi there! Today is an extra special day for me. It’s my 25th wedding anniversary! All my wedding pictures have a copyright on them, so I can’t post one here, but this is a pic we have with our oldest son. Yes, he’s very tall. We had to sit for the picture to look right. I’m only 5’4″ and he is 6’3″.
I’d wish my hubby a happy anniversary here, but let’s face it, he’s not this blog’s target audience. lol. That being said he’s a great brain storming partner when I need plotting help. :) And also helped me come up with the idea for this new release.
I’m excited to announce that Island Dreams is now available. This is the second book in my Wildflower B&B Romance series. I hope you enjoy this sampling of the story that follows the blurb.
Piper Hunt arrives on Wildflower Island to develop family property into an upscale resort knowing this may be her last chance to prove her worth to her father. With grandiose ideas, she soon finds herself at odds with adjoining property owner, Chase Grayson. As she begins to appreciate the simplicity of the island, she struggles to maintain balance between her father’s wishes, preserving the natural beauty of the island, and her attraction for Chase.
Chase Grayson values the peace and quiet of Wildflower Island. That serenity is threatened when Piper Hunt discloses her plans to develop an upscale resort that not only butts up to his property, but will turn the island into a busy tourist destination. In fighting her plans, he also finds himself fighting his attraction to her. If he doesn’t stop her plans for the resort, his life will be altered forever. If he succeeds, it means he will never see her again. Can he live with either choice?
CHASE BLAZED THROUGH THE woods, anxious to get this tour over with. Too bad Piper Hunt was here to change the island; otherwise they might have been friends. She seemed nice enough. She had good taste in vehicles too. He liked her Jeep and had considered getting one himself not too long ago. From what he could see so far, it was hard to find fault with her, other than her reason for being here.
He glanced over his shoulder and grinned. Miss Hunt’s mouth hung open and her head tilted up as she gazed around. At this rate she was liable to trip or twist an ankle, but he couldn’t blame her. The birds loved this side of the island with all the untouched vegetation and had suddenly decided to make their presence known. Apparently their feathered friends didn’t feel threatened by them. If he closed his eyes and listened he could imagine they were in a rain forest with the racket of squawks, trills, and tweets the birds were making.
“The birds are really something,” Piper said. “Are they always this loud?”
“It depends on the time of day. They’re usually louder in the mornings than afternoons.” He stopped and turned. “Are you ready to see the lake?”
Her eyes glowed. “Yes,” she whispered. His pulse amped at the awe in her voice. She seemed to get
this place in a way most people wouldn’t. He turned and parted the foliage between them and the lake. “What do you think?” The sun glistened on the crystal clear water. A garter snake slithered under a rock as they approached. He hoped Piper hadn’t noticed. Based on her response earlier, he suspected snakes were not on her list of likes.
Her eyes brightened and a smile lit her face. “It’s perfect,” she breathed. “But how? No one has been taking care of it.”
He sucked in a breath at how her smile transformed her face. Piper wasn’t exactly beautiful, but her pert nose and the straight dark hair framing her clear olive complexion were entrancing. Her almost boyish figure reminded him of a young Audrey Hepburn. Funny thing was, it all looked good on her. She seemed to glow from the inside out, drawing him to her.
“Raw beauty like this is hard to find.” Piper turned to face him. “You’re right.” He hadn’t realized he’d spoken out loud. He quickly turned
both his eyes and his thoughts back to the lake, but his eyes wandered to her face again. “This area is untouched. No one comes here to spoil it or mess with the eco-system. It’s simple beauty.” Like the untouched-loveliness of the woman standing before him who didn’t appear to have on any makeup—or need any.
She quirked a brow at him. “Do I have something on my face?” She lifted a hand to her cheek.
“No. It’s perfect. Uh… I mean, there’s nothing on your face.”
“Oh. Well, good.” She shielded her eyes with her hand. “I’m almost afraid to develop this land,” she muttered softly.
Delight surged through him. Maybe he’d be able to convince her to change her mind and leave this special place alone. “You ready to go back?”
She shook her head. “I need to take pictures first.” She pulled her camera from its bag and clicked off a multitude of shots, pivoting from one viewpoint to another. “I could do this for hours, I love taking pictures, but I guess I have what I need.” She put the camera away and beamed him a breath-taking grin. “Okay. I’m
ready now.” He tromped past her and led the way out. “Are you staying
on the island or heading back to Seattle?” Or wherever it was she came from.
She followed, trying to keep up. “I have a room at the Wildflower Bed-and-Breakfast. Do you know the place?”
“I sure do. I helped paint the exterior not long ago. It’s nice. The cook is the best on the island, and the owner is a natural at the B&B business. I consider them both friends.” He’d gotten to know Nick and Zoe this summer after Nick bought the bed-and- breakfast. Zoe was his cook and housekeeper. “You’ll be comfortable there.”
“Wonderful. I’m hoping to steal her to be the executive chef for the restaurant I have planned.”
Piper had a better chance of the town council approving this development than getting Zoe to leave her future husband’s B&B to cook someplace else. But he didn’t say so. In a way he felt sorry for the woman. He could tell this project meant a lot to her. He glanced over his shoulder and noticed her reddened face. “Are you okay? Do I need to slow down?”
“No. I’m fine, just embarrassed. I didn’t mean to blurt out that I was here to steal the B&B’s cook. But since I opened my big mouth, I might as well tell you I know her reputation, which is why I chose to stay at the bed-and-breakfast.”
He chuckled at her confession. Nothing about Piper was big, including her attractive mouth. She was taller than a lot of women but still about six inches shorter than him. He wiped his brow. Oh boy, he’d better change the direction of his thoughts. How had his attention shifted so quickly from the development of the land to unsettling details about this woman?
She caught up with him and matched his stride as they exited the woods. “What was so funny back there?”
“You saying you have a big mouth.” He looked at her lips— pink as cherry blossoms and soft looking as the peaches that grew on the tree in his yard.
She laughed. “That was a figure of speech. I sometimes talk too much, hence the big mouth comment. But you’re right about the size of my mouth, at least according to my orthodontist who mentioned it every time I had an appointment as a teen.” She flashed her perfectly straight teeth.
He grinned, liking this relaxed version of Piper as she rambled, actually preferred it to the professional businesswoman she projected so well. They came out of the woods into the clearing where they’d left their vehicles. He leaned against his Toyota Tacoma. “You know the way back?”
“I follow this road right?”
“Pretty much. There are signs leading to the B&B, so you shouldn’t get lost as long as you don’t make a wrong turn.”
“Well, it’s not like this place is huge. And it is an island.” She flashed another sweet smile. “I think I’ll be okay. Thanks for the tour.”
“My pleasure.” He dipped his head. “See you around.”
“Hey.” Piper stopped him with a hand on his forearm. “Could we meet sometime this week? I would like to run my plans past you.”
“But I thought you…” Better not tell her his thoughts yet. He didn’t want to hurt her feelings by telling her she should toss her plans and take a hike. She seemed nice enough and deserved to be heard out. Besides, if she was still planning on destroying the island, he’d need to know what she was up to. “Sure. I’ll stop by the Wildflower or text you.”
“Thanks.” She slid behind the wheel, tooted her horn, and drove off.
Too bad Piper Hunt was on an expedition to destroy this island, because under different circumstances, he’d enjoy getting to know her. For now, though, he had to figure out a way to make her leave.
If you are still reading, thank you! I write because I have a passion for creating stories, but it would all be for nothing without readers like you.
I’m currently working on a series that takes place in my favorite vacation destination. :) What is your favorite vacation destination? What makes it special?
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Buy link for Island Dreams: