Shopkeeper Chris Douglas traveled the world as a tour guide. He settled in New York City and turned his love of coffees and wines from around the world into a thriving specialty business. He enjoys meeting new people and his small emporium just off Bleecker Street brings all sorts through his door. After he falls off a ladder, Chris tapes a “help wanted” sign on the door and hopes it will attract the right person.
Eric Todd is at loose ends after the company he worked for changed hands and he was let go. He can get by financially, but with too many hours to fill in a day, he’d like a part-time job to keep busy. When he spies the hand-drawn sign on the door of The Corked Bean, he goes inside to check out the store, and the sexy proprietor.
The two men hit it off and Chris hires Eric on the spot. Now the pay and benefits aren’t as enticing, or satisfying, as the after-hours perks available for the perfect hire.
“You’re full of tricks aren’t you?”
“The name of the game is get them in here. They can’t purchase if they don’t come in.”
We enjoyed our java in comfortable silence for a few minutes but I sensed something was on his mind.
“You’ve bought me coffee—several cups. Can I treat you to breakfast at my place?”
I didn’t want him to think I was too eager nor did I want to blow the chance to get laid. The crowd I hung out with was fun, but they were friends only. I wanted the man across the table from me.
Heck, I wanted him bent over it or sprawled on it, or even under it if we happened to slide off. I met his smoky gaze and shivered.
“I’ve a better idea since my knee isn’t up to much walking. Why don’t we go to my place for breakfast? You can still cook, though.”
He nodded. “Where do you live?”
I pointed at the ceiling. “It’s a short commute.”
I’d purchased the building a few years ago not caring that the elevator went only as far as the second floor. With the street storefront, the second-floor stockroom and a third level apartment, it had been perfect for my needs. After living in the small space for a year, I discovered adding a fourth story for a bedroom suite was not only financially feasible but would keep me sane. I liked the old industrial elevator so I didn’t replace it with one that went all the way to the top.
Having to gimp my way up the stairs on a bum knee in front of a guy I planned to take to bed was embarrassing. It also brought home the fact we would need to be a bit creative since I couldn’t put a lot of pressure on the joint. Of course, figuring it out could be interesting.
Eric did the heavy lifting in the elevator, pulling the grate down with a grin.
I snorted and answered truthfully. “Nope. It’s going up.”
His gaze dropped to my zipper and the cheeky grin on his face widened. “I’m not sure it’s acceptable to take advantage of you when you can’t run from me.”
“What makes you think I’d run even if I could?”
He closed the distance between us. The smile faded from his face, replaced by a searching seriousness as I grasped his hips and pulled him closer. His hands went to my shoulders, his intense hazel gaze locked with mine. I stared into those gleaming orbs and memorized every golden and green fleck. The elevator jolted to a stop but I barely felt the bump in my knee.
“Time to get off.”
Eric shook his head, his husky voice barely above a whisper. “It won’t be that fast.”
NAMED ONE OF AMAZON'S BEST ROMANCES OF THE MONTH!
Once upon a time, a duke had five daughters who never made a stir. They practiced their French, their pianoforte, and their dancing…until one ran off with the dancing instructor, and the rest were left to face the scandal.
Lady Eleanor, the Duke of Marymount’s eldest daughter, knows the burden is hers: she must marry well to restore the family name. So a loveless match is made and her fate is set. But then Eleanor meets her intended’s rakish younger brother. With his tawny hair, green eyes, and scandalous behavior, Lord Alexander Raybourn makes her want to be very bad indeed.
With his very honorable sibling too busy saving the world to woo Eleanor, Alexander is tasked with finding out her likes and dislikes for his elder brother. But the more time he spends with the secretly naughty Eleanor, helping her tick off all the things on her good list for being bad, the more he knows what they want, and need, is each other.
When does proper behavior deserve a deliciously improper reward?
The scandalously unmarried Lady Margaret Sawford is looking for adventure—and is always up for a challenge. Her curiosity is aroused by a dangerous-looking stranger with an eye patch, an ideal companion for the life she longs for, no matter what Society might say. So when the piratical gentleman turns out to be a duke—and just as boringly proper as any other nobleman—she can't help but incite him to walk on the wild side.
Well-heeled, well-mannered, and well beyond any interest in society's expectations, the Duke of Lasham is tired of being perfect. Margaret's lush beauty and gently laughing eyes are an irresistible temptation to embrace the imperfect—and her. But if a little misbehavior is appealing, unleashing his wild side is completely seductive—as long as the lovely Margaret is the object of his passion . . .
The richest bachelor in England plays matchmaker…for an heiress he wants for himself!
For beautiful, witty Lavinia Gray, there’s only one thing worse than having to ask the appalling Parth Sterling to marry her: being turned down by him.
Now the richest bachelor in England, Parth is not about to marry a woman as reckless and fashion-obsessed as Lavinia; he’s chosen a far more suitable bride.
But when he learns of Lavinia's desperate circumstances, he offers to find her a husband. Even better, he’ll find her a prince.
As usual, there’s no problem Parth can’t fix. But the more time he spends with the beguiling Lavinia, the more he finds himself wondering…
Why does the woman who’s completely wrong feel so right in his arms?
A bride wasn’t in his plans . . .
The last thing Marcus, the Duke of Autenberry, expects to see after sleeping off a night’s drunken shenanigans is a woman being auctioned in the village square. Before he can think about the ramifications, he buys her, thinking he’s winning the girl her freedom. Instead, he discovers he’s bought a wife.
A duke wasn’t in hers . . .
Alyse Bell is almost rid of the shackles that bound her in a name-only marriage, but the day her friend promised to purchase her in a wife auction, he vanishes, leaving her to face a mob of unsavory bachelors intent on owning her body and soul. But the appearance of a wicked, wealthy stranger changes her path forever.
The road to ruin . . .
Marcus doesn’t know what to do with the impertinent chit who clearly isn’t duchess material! Insisting their marriage isn’t legitimate, they leave for his estate in Scotland, hoping to devise a plan to get rid of each other. However, on a journey fraught with misadventure, their attraction grows and Marcus realizes he’ll do anything to keep this fiery woman for his own.
A Cosmopolitan Best Book of 2017!
Alisha Rai returns with the second novel in her sizzling Forbidden Hearts series!
He wasn’t supposed to fall in love with his brother’s widow…
Accused of a crime he didn't commit, Jackson Kane fled his home, his name, and his family. Ten years later, he’s come back to town: older, wiser, richer, tougher—and still helpless to turn away the one woman he could never stop loving, even after she married his brother.
Sadia Ahmed can’t deal with the feelings her mysterious former brother-in-law stirs, but she also can’t turn down his offer of help with the cafe she’s inherited. While he heats up her kitchen, she slowly discovers that the boy she adored has grown into a man she’s simply unable to resist.
An affair is unthinkable, but their desire is undeniable. As secrets and lies are stripped away, Sadia and Jackson must decide if they’re strong enough to face the past...and step into a future together.
Alisha Rai, one of contemporary romance’s brightest stars, makes her Avon Books debut with the first novel in the sexy Forbidden Hearts series!
One night. No one will know.
That was the deal. Every year, Livvy Kane and Nicholas Chandler would share one perfect night of illicit pleasure. The forbidden hours let them forget the tragedy that haunted their pasts—and the last names that made them enemies.
Until the night she didn’t show up.
Now Nicholas has an empire to run. He doesn’t have time for distractions and Livvy’s sudden reappearance in town is a major distraction. She’s the one woman he shouldn’t want . . . so why can’t he forget how right she feels in his bed?
Livvy didn’t come home for Nicholas, but fate seems determined to remind her of his presence—and their past. Although the passion between them might have once run hot and deep, not even love can overcome the scandal that divided their families.
Being together might be against all the rules . . . but being apart is impossible.
One of Amazon's Best Romances of the Month & Best Romances of 2017!
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