TITLE – Almost Matched (book #1)
SERIES – Almost Bad Boys
AUTHOR – A.O. Peart
GENRE – New Adult Romantic Comedy novella
PUBLICATION DATE – November 8, 2013
PUBLISHER – Three Graces Publishing
COVER ARTIST – Regina Wamba
Would you take another shot at love? Or just settle on a friend with benefits?
Their heartbreaking past will move you. Their passion will make you blush. Their antics will make you laugh out loud.
Twenty-five-year-old Natalie Davenport lugs substantial baggage. One boyfriend after the next has been a total disaster, leaving Natalie distrustful toward the male population in general. So when Colin Hampton crosses her path, she’s cautious. Her heart (and some other body parts!) nudges her to go for it, while her head wants her to run for the hills.
Colin is one of those gorgeous guys who attract women, no matter the age or marital status. With a successful career at a popular Seattle radio station, hard body, and charming personality, he is the complete package. But something dark lurks in the corners of his soul; some murky experience that has changed him—maybe for the better, but maybe for the worse.
Will he steal her heart and stomp over it like other guys did?
Will she let him into her heavily fortified world despite herself?
Or will they settle somewhere in the middle—establishing the emotional boundaries to protect them from falling in love?
This contemporary romantic comedy blends humor, sensuality, and angst, with zany characters and witty dialogue. You will laugh out loud while blushing in embarrassment.
**Warning: contains sexual situations (some quite vivid!), profanity, and a high dose of sarcasm. Oh, and there is a lot of appletini and beer drinking.
May not be appropriate for readers under 18 years old. Not intended for prudes and killjoys with no sense of humor**
The Almost Bad Boys series are the stories of four feisty twenty-something women who refuse to let their past drag them down.
“Hey! Natalie!” I hear someone call from the car to my left.
I turn. Two things happen at once: my heartbeat increases to some dangerous levels, and my brain sounds the S.O.S. message. I am far from indecisive most of the time, but now I cannot, for the life of me, decide what to do.
So, I sit, my eyes stupidly wide, staring at the absolutely gorgeous, insanely sexy male specimen that grins at me from the car in the lane next to mine. The traffic freezes, so the cars aren’t moving at the moment. He looks at me from behind some designer sunglasses, waiting for a sign of recognition from me.
It’s him! The man who I encountered last week while I was clad only in a mini skirt, shoes, and a bra that left little to imagination.
Did I mention the S.O.S pleading from my brain? Screw the brain. I like what my heart is doing so much better. And why am I so worried about Colin’s intentions? If he didn’t want to get my attention, he wouldn’t. But he did. He deliberately called out to me, waving and smiling.
“Hey, Colin!” I give a cautious wave back. “Wow, what a coincidence.” Yep, that’s me—the queen of obvious. I never try to be sophisticated or ostentatious. One thing I’d learned in my twenty-five years is to be myself and not try too hard to please anyone. ‘Forget the pressures of the outside world’ is pretty much my mantra.
“So good to see you, Natalie.” He definitely sounds sincere. No hidden undertones, no suggestive meanings. Just the old, good ‘nice to see you’.
I like that. Actually, I like it a bit too much. So much that there is an unmistakable warm feeling in my stomach, spreading upward to my chest and down… well, way down there. What the hell is that about? I should be embarrassed, remembering our first—very unfortunate—encounter. But no! My vagina decides it is perfectly normal to act ready. Stupid vagina. There really should be a saying, that—like men, thinking with their penises—some girls think with their pussies. I would qualify. I would get a platinum level membership. Well, my girlfriends would too, so that would be a hoot of a club.
“Crazy traffic, isn’t it?” I’m stalling, trying to see how Colin would continue this conversation. Although the cars are about to start moving, and we will just wave ‘bye’.
“I know. It might even make sense to take the next exit and wait it out somewhere. There must be some nice bar or a restaurant around.”
Whoa. Is he trying to get me to join him? I won’t go for it. Cute or not, I don’t even know him. “I hear ya.” That’s safe enough answer.
Colin is wearing a very-white, very-crisp dress shirt, with sleeves rolled up over his elbows. His tie is draped over the navy-blue jacket that hangs on the back of the passenger seat. Several buttons of his shirt are unbuttoned, and when he twists his upper body away from the steering wheel and toward me, he graces me with a glimpse of his smooth chest. No hair, just the way I like it. And is there a tattoo, swirling up from somewhere around his nipple and toward his shoulder? It’s hard to tell with his shirt just barely allowing a peek of his upper torso.
Suddenly, I want to see what that tattoo is depicting. No, scratch that. It’s my vagina who wants to know. And she wants to do some naughty things to that tattoo. How freakin’ embarrassing. Ali is right—I need a fuck buddy to keep my fantasies at bay.
I look away, trying to get myself under control with two deep breaths. And then I realize that my own shirt is unbuttoned way too low. Hello girls! My boobies are curiously sticking their heads up, trying to see what vagina is so breathlessly talking about.
My hand goes automatically to my chest, trying to put the stupid buttons back into their holes, but I stop half-way through, thinking this would seem overly-bashful enough to actually give me the real reason to blush.
Ah, screw that. “Where are you heading?” I ask, my tone conversational.
“Back home. Worked out, but my gym tee was too sweaty too wear, so I settled on putting my work shirt back on.” He gestures to his white shirt.
I wonder if he changed from gym shorts into his suit pants. But I can’t see below his chest.
Aretha Franklin “You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman”
Three Days Grace “Riot”
Pink Floyd “Goodbye” (The Wall)
Evanescence “Bring Me To Life”
Family of the Year “Hero”
Brandi Carlile “Hallelujah”
Imagine Dragons “It’s Time”
Israel Kamakawiwo’ole “Over the Rainbow”
Bareilles “Gonna Get Over You”
Bareilles “Gonna Get Over You”
Angela Orlowski-Peart was born and raised in Poland. She describes herself as European born, American by choice. She was just seven-years-old when she decided to learn English and translate her favorite Polish fairytales.
Angela is the author of the Young Adult and New Adult fiction novels. She writes in multiple genres, including paranormal, fantasy, urban fantasy, contemporary, sci-fi, and short stories. She is a member of Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Western Washington Chapter (http://www.scbwi.org), and several authors' and readers' networking groups on Facebook, Linkedin, and Goodreads.
Angela speaks with Polish accent, and loves listening to the Southern drawl. She is passionate about watercolor painting, fashion—especially stilettos, rock climbing, environment, and organic food and gardening. She lives in the Seattle area with her family and a chronically curious cat.
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GIVEAWAY - This is within the continental US only:
1 copy signed Almost Matched paper back. This prize will be mailed within one week from the publishing date. Winner must provide valid mailing address.
2 copies of Almost Matched ebook. These prizes will be emailed within two days from the publishing date. The winner must provide valid email address and specify the format (mobi, ePub, or PDF).
5 signed Almost Matched postcards. These prizes will be mailed by November 11th.
1 Almost Matched wine bottle charm and wine bottle stopper (wine and wine bottles not included, hehe). This prize will be mailed by November 11th.