Publisher: Perfect Mamas Press
Release Date: May 8, 2013
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Synopsis: Heather Meadows lost the only love she’s ever known. Her perfect, yet ordinary life was turned upside down the day her 38-year-old husband died. Her happily ever after was gone in the blink of an eye. Heather’s life becomes the subject of scrutiny and pity as she tries to pick up the pieces of her shattered world and raise her three children on her own. In the midst of suburbia and gossipy neighbors, Heather tries to re-build a normal life. Little does she know she’s about to trip into a new adventure. An adventure she could never have imagined. Where will her misstep take her and how will Heather handle the prying eyes of those around her?
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Meet The Author:
Julie Farley was born and raised on Long Island. Even though she now lives in Virginia, a piece of her heart still lives in New York. And there's one in Chicago and South Bend, IN home of her alma mater Notre Dame. When Julie's not writing she's teaching preschool or taking care of her own four children. Julie grew up with her nose in a book and her love of books turned into a love of writing as well. Julie published her first book, Tripped Up Love, in May of 2013. The sequel, The New Ever After, will be released in July of 2013.
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Heather was too tired to argue. She had a feeling she hadn’t had in a while. It felt relaxing to have someone else take charge of her life for a moment. And someone had finally hugged her. Even better, someone who looked like Peter. Heather had always had a thing for arm tattoos. Hank was a guy without a tattoo. It hadn’t mattered to her. Hank was about so much more than a tattoo. He was her home, her childhood, her life all packed into a 200 lb man. He was her everything. Hank had been part of her life for thirty-two years. He knew everything about her. When he died, he took so much of her with him. Things weren’t always perfect with them, but things were familiar. They had known each other since Mrs. Zarchy’s kindergarten class. He asked her to sleep over at his house when he was in first grade. He was her first love. She was his. There had been others in high school and college for both of them but just enough others to know they were all the other wanted. When he proposed to her in the lifeguard chair on the beach in September, a year and a half after they graduated from college, they both knew this was it. It was a relationship sealed in the bark of the old oak tree in front of the house her mom still lived in. A house and tree that were painful reminders of the current state of things.
But right now, this guy in a white t-shirt, well-worn skinny jeans and Doc Marten’s was going to buy her lunch and had rescued her from the turkey vultures and tennis moms who would have started swarming had he not stopped his car. He looked like the bad boy every girl dreamed of when her usually doting husband did something wrong. Like forgetting to put a Pull Up on your toddler before bedtime or leaving the half-gallon of organic milk in the car on a hot summer night. This guy, Peter, looked bad but seemed like he may have some shining armor in his closet.
Peter left before she could say anything. Heather called her mom, who was frantic and decided she would leave the boys at home and take Gracie to the store to buy dinner. She said they would come over later that afternoon.
Peter hopped in his car and ran over to his brother-in-law’s restaurant. He grabbed some iced tea, salad and sandwiches. Thankfully, Chris wasn’t there. Peter knew he was at a travel baseball tournament in Newport News with Peter’s nephew. Janie was at home with his niece.
He got back to Heather’s pretty quickly. Peter opened the food on the island. He carried a tea over to her.
“I have a chicken curry sandwich, garden salad and grilled cheese with tomato. What would you like?”
“Hmmmm… that’s easy. Obviously you went to Cafe Nouveau. I’ll have half of the chicken curry. It’s my favorite.” She decided not to mention she was a vegan. Or a fegan (fake vegan) as her best friend from high school not so lovingly called her. Heather happened to be a vegan who enjoyed a cheeseburger every once in a while and a good chicken curry.
Peter brought it over to her in the brown cardboard box it came in. Peter seated himself on the couch opposite Heather and ate the grilled cheese.
“Does your Mom take the kids often?”
“At least once a month. I like to have them here though. I’m not good about sharing them anymore. Hank’s mom likes to take them out when she can. But it gets too quiet without them. They have their friends here and usually don’t like to leave.”
“Do you run often?”
“As often as I can get away. I usually write better after I run - assuming I don’t fall in a pothole. But I guess that’s done for awhile.”
“You’ll be back at it before you know it. We’ll have to find other ways for you to workout.” We? What the hell was he doing? he thought to himself. He never said things like that.
We? Who the hell was this guy? thought Heather. After I ruined his day, he was brave enough to mention seeing me again.
“I can only imagine what I would do on another workout. Accidents and misfortune seem to follow me.”
“Yeah, I’ve only known you for a few hours, and I’ve picked up on that.”
“I have a stationary bike upstairs I can probably use to ensure my ass doesn’t get any fatter.”
“Don’t think you are in danger of that happening anytime soon.” Conversation was easy with Heather. He felt like he had known her all his life.
Heather hadn’t fallen into an easy conversation with anyone in the last year and a half much less a stranger of the male persuasion. It felt oddly familiar, and she was hoping she didn’t ruin it or over analyze it too much. She could hardly take her eyes off of him. She was having a hard time figuring him out. He was casually elegant, had at least two tattoos (she could only imagine what was covered), wore Doc Martens and drove a navy blue Lexus. He did not look like any of the men she knew in the area.
“Do you live nearby?” Heather asked.
“I actually have a loft downtown, but my sister lives out here. I dropped something off this morning and was on my way home.”
“Stuck in the 2-3-1-1-3. Lucky you.”
“It’s not so bad. Who knew I would get to experience so much of it today? I divide my time in a few different places. I have a place in Manhattan, and my family has a house in Maine.”
“Some of my favorite places.”
He said family, thought Heather. Did he mean his immediate family or his parents? He wasn’t wearing a ring, and she kind of doubted that a wife would love for him to be spending so much time with another woman.
“This is my home base though. The place where they send my mail.”
“I can’t thank you enough for getting me this sandwich. And for taking me to the doctor. Oh, and for picking me up off the pavement. Great first impression.”
“It was a first impression I am not likely to forget. I get the sense that life with you is always this memorable.”
Peter didn’t know the half of it. Heather had a knack for making waxing your eyebrows interesting. He hadn’t even met the kids yet.
“What are you writing?” asked Peter.
“A memoir. A love story of sorts. I just don’t get a lot of time to write lately.”
“Well, I would love to read it sometime. I guess I can wait till it’s published.”
“Ha! You’ll be waiting awhile then! Mom and the kids should be here soon. Why don’t you get on with your day? I’ve kept you long enough.”
“Only if you are sure you’ll be ok. I’ll be out here again to check in on you.”
Peter picked up all their lunch, made sure Heather had what she needed and left her with a quick tap on the shoulder. And for the first time in ages, Heather had a tiny smile in her heart.
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I hope you all enjoyed the little book spotlight, excerpt, and giveaway! Don't forget that this tour was hosted by Irresistible Reads, and if you want to check out the rest of the tour you can find that here. Let me know what you think of the book, and excerpt in the comments!