A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: The Sinner & The Saint (Ellery Mountain #8) by RJ Scott

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Nick Merrick left England amidst of storm of media attention. Berated for breaking his engagement to the daughter of a prominent member of Parliament, and for being gay and participating in a sex tape scandal, he seeks out the anonymity of his friend Jason’s house in Ellery Mountain while he unwinds and takes time to assess where he’s going with his life. He doesn’t meet his sexy neighbor Ben until Ben reports a break-in at the house where Nick is staying. Not knowing Jason gave someone access to the property, Ben is shocked when the cops show up and he meets the gorgeous guy with the British accent who’s suddenly thrust into his life.

Ben is a doctor, on temporary assignment in Ellery Mountain, working with Daniel to bring a burn unit to the Veteran’s Center. The gruff loner is looked upon as a hero since he’s the man who saved Daniel’s life in the Army but he doesn’t feel heroic. On the inside he’s a mess and considers himself “less than” many others who served their country due to the decisions he had to make that ultimately negatively affected so many good men.

The story moves along anticipated lines with characters from the town, some of whom may be well-known to those who follow the series, interacting with the two MCs. We learn that the media has blown Nick’s problems out of the water and the reality is that he and his fiancé are best friends and the breakup was a way for her to find happiness with the man she really loved. We also learn there are no sex tapes and we get to watch the push-pull sexy interactions between Nick and Ben as they decide to have no-strings sex and nothing more. And we get to see that plan fail.

Typical of RJ Scott’s writing in other books in this series, the MCs find their way to a resolution of their problems and a happy ending. Along the way, some of their problems dissipated rather quickly, some were only superficially addressed, and some played out a resolution.

Though I read books one through three, I haven’t read any since that time. However, it was easy to follow this story. In fact, other than recognizing character names from previous books, it was quite simple to read this and I’m sure anyone can read it as a standalone.

A light, sweet romance mixed with a bit of sex, but thankfully not an overload of it, this book is an easy one-day read.

~~~

The cover by Meredith Russell depicts the MCs of this story in the upper panel: two handsome young men, the one in the front is bearded and dressed casually and the one behind him is dressed in business attire with a stethoscope around his neck. The lower panel is a panorama of the Ellery Mountain area that ties this to the balance of the series.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited
Original TitleThe Sinner and the Saint
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesEllery Mountain #8

Review Tour and Giveaway – The Sinner &The Saint (Ellery Mountain #8) by RJ Scott (excerpt)

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Universal Buy Link
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Length: 40,000 words approx.
 
Ellery Mountain Series
 
 
Blurb



Army medic Ben Rockwell is in Ellery to work with the Veterans Center creating a new specialist unit for post trauma care. Desperate to make amends for battlefield decisions he regrets, he is focused on the unit and nothing else. Until some stranger moves in next door and throws him a curveball. He’s no hero, even though everyone says he is, and the lies burn inside him.


Leaving drama and chaos in his wake, Nicholas Merrick fled London and is hiding out in his friend Jason’s house, until everything back home dies a death. The choices he made in his life were to keep his best friend safe, but as a result everyone sees him as the bad guy.


When these two meet, the attraction is instant. Can they ever be their true selves, and find love as a result?

 
 
 
Excerpt



Chapter 1


Loud banging, with added yelling, pulled Nick out of a nightmare. After a restless, irritable, crunchy-messy night of tossing and turning, he had finally fallen asleep some time before dawn, and now at fuck o’clock in the morning there was knocking at the front door. And some asshole shouting words that he couldn’t make out. Was this part of his dream? He couldn’t tell.


For the longest time he lay flat on his back, unwilling to move. The sheets were wrapped around him like a mummy, the quilt on the floor, and he was still in that half world between nightmare and reality. Even closing his eyes didn’t help dispel the vivid images of him walking up to the Oscar podium completely naked and with the Queen pointing and laughing at him.


Naked as the day he was born, hanging loose and free, and no one saying a thing. Apart from the laughing that was. Like it was okay that one of the Oscar nominees was walking up the steps free of any and all clothing.


Not to mention no one commented on the Queen throwing popcorn at him.


Yep, it had been that kind of nightmare, and it wasn’t the first time he’d had it. And where the Oscar fear came from he didn’t know. There would never be a chance of an Oscar for. Not for the guy whose acting career had happened by accident and formed only because of a personal rebellion against his straight laced family. His resume included two sequels to the highly profitable, but formulaic, shit-bad, Angels of Bedlam franchise, with his entire fee going charity because he didn’t need the money.


Nick hadn’t been in the first UK funded Bedlam film. Said film had been praised for its ingenious twist on a dark horror romance. No, he was the handy British villain in the next two, the studio cashing in on any money that was left out there in a saturated market by ticking all the boxes. Explosions, tick. Strong, but mostly naked, female lead, tick. Sexy down on his luck, in te wrong place at the wrong time, male lead, tick.


And him, the ubiquitous bad guy with the English accent.


The follow up were certainly not Oscar material, and once Nick pulled his fragmented sleep-addled thoughts into line, he focused on the statistical likelihood of even being nominated for an Oscar in the first place, let alone accepting it naked.


“Fuck me,” he muttered to the empty room and rolled onto his front. The banging had stopped and no one actually knew he was here, so, he wasn’t going to answer the door in a place that wasn’t even his.


Jason McInnery and his husband, Kieran, lived in this stunning home, in the small town of Ellery, Tennessee. Glass floor to ceiling, wide open rooms, a pool in the garden, and the most comprehensive jungle gym he’d ever seen for Jason and Kieran’s son, Jonas. Even the damn guest room was beautiful, a huge wood carving took up nearly one wall, and the view from the window out to the mountain was stunning. At least that was the adjective he was supposed to use for what he could see. Objectively, he could see it was spectacular, but was too lost in confusion since he got here to think about it too much. A quick glance at the clock showed him it was five am, like midnight or something back in London, and still dark in the shadow of the mountain, so he rolled over and pulled the covers up to his neck.


Even in the middle of the chaotic remnants of his nightmare he welcomed the heat that cocooned him and willed the knocking to stop. Which it did. The mess of dreams forgotten, he drifted on as many good thoughts as he could muster and was very nearly asleep when the banging started up again. He groaned and hid his face under the pillow, willing the person creating the noise to go away. Then it ceased again, and he closed his eyes, but didn’t remove the pillow. Dawn was too close now and the room would fill with light because he hadn’t even taken the time to pull the drapes.


Unfortunately, his bladder had other ideas about what he needed to do, and cursing, he grabbed the sheets and untwisted himself. Feet planted on the floor he scrubbed a hand over his face, the untamed beard was just another reminder of everything that was horribly wrong about his life right now. Normally he would have just the right amount of stubble, but the last instalment of Angels of Bedlam, cunningly entitled, Bedlam Adrift, called for him to be a castaway, hence the beard, which he’d left to tangle.


No point in worrying about it anyway. He’d left London to get away from paparazzi, and their incessant need for more, and he was in unofficial hiding. Therefore, no one would see his beard, or his bloodshot eyes.


He caught sight of himself in the mirror.


“Jesus, you look fucked.”


Bedhead. Bags under his eyes. Beard. It was a whole cacophony of B-shit. Yawning widely, he padded across the bedroom to the half bath, emptying his bladder and washing his hands. He’d gone to bed as nature intended. Well, warm nature anyway, completely naked, which probably led to nightmare. Packing back home had been done in less than five minutes, his priority was money, passport, his phone, his laptop and associated chargers. It seemed like his messed-up head hadn’t thought any kind of pajamas were needed, or indeed underwear.


The next choice was shower or bed, and the exhaustion of the past few days, the media attention, making sure Heather was okay, fleeing the UK, ending up here in the middle of rural Tennessee, it was all too much and he sighed.


“Bed it is,” he muttered to his reflection. As soon as he woke up he was going online to order everything he’d forgot to pack. Jason had said to help himself to anything he needed but helping himself to his friend’s clothes didn’t feel right.


He yawned again, and stepped out into the cooler bedroom, eyes only half open.


“Hands where I can see them,” someone shouted, and Nick, startled, his heart pounding, fell backwards into the bathroom, catching himself on the jamb as best he could. He blinked to focus on the man in front of him.


The cop.


The gun.


The cop holding a gun on him. Immediately he raised his hands, and then lowered them to cover his junk, and then raised them again when the cop didn’t move.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ is the author of the over one hundred novels and discovered romance in books at a very young age. She realized that if there wasn’t romance on the page, she could create it in her head, and is a lifelong writer.


She lives and works out of her home in the beautiful English countryside, spends her spare time reading, watching films, and enjoying time with her family.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit and has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.


She’s always thrilled to hear from readers, bloggers and other writers. Please contact via the following links below:


Email RJ (rj@rjscott.co.uk)
Goodreads Page
RJ’s Blog
RJ on Twitter
Facebook
Library Thing Page
Tumblr (some NSFW (not safe for work) photos)
Pinterest

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Review Tour for Texas Gift (Texas #8) by R.J. Scott (excerpt and giveaway)

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Length: 50,000 words approx
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Texas Series
 
Book #1 – The Heart of Texas – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – Texas Winter – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Texas Heat – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 – Texas Family – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #5 – Texas Christmas – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #6 – Texas Fall – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #7 – Texas Wedding – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

A gift for every single reader needed to know what happened next for to Jack and Riley…


When Hayley arrived on the steps of the D, Riley and Jack knew life would never be the same.


Told through Riley and Jack’s eyes, this is ten years in the life of their family and watching Hayley grow up, fall in love, and start her own life. Hurricanes, illness, babies, happiness, sadness, work, play, the barn, the office, horses, friends, enemies, and above all love.


Excerpt


Chapter One


Riley needed to apologize. Right now.


He’d fucked up big time, and he should have seen it coming, because everything he did went in cycles. He and Jack hadn’t argued in so long and maybe the tension that had been building inside Riley had needed an outlet; he’d provoked the argument. He’d pushed and prodded and sulked and shoved at Jack until Jack had snapped.


Not in loud, shouting temper, or anything like what Riley deserved. No, Jack had gone deathly quiet.


Absolutely. Utterly. Quiet.


Riley shouted at him, got everything out of his system, felt the weight of it all lessen by throwing it at Jack and what had happened? He’d stood there at first, confused, and then steadily calmer. Weirdly calmer.


They argued; no normal marriage went without arguments over things as important as the kids and as trivial as picking up wet towels. But they resolved things, Jack/Riley was a unit that worked. They sometimes bickered and teased, they shouted rarely, and on the odd occasion there would be sulking. Mostly from Riley. He considered it as thinking time but Jack just called him on his sulking like a child.


Their arguments always ended in love; talking, kissing, complete forgiveness that could only come when two people understood and loved each other.


This morning though, he’d made Connor cry, Lexie scowl, and Max hide under the table with Toby. Jack hadn’t even stayed for that. The crying, scowling and hiding had happened after he’d left.


“Why are you shouting at Pappa!” Connor shouted back at Riley. “Stop shouting.” Then he’d started to cry, and Riley’s heart had broken into a million pieces. He’d sat between a crying Connor, and a sullen, angry Lexie and tried to explain that he had a bad headache and he didn’t mean to shout. For headache, read migraine, tight painful migraine that blurred his vision and made him feel sick. He’d taken meds and the sharp edges of the glass in his head were easing, but he couldn’t think straight. Connor stopped crying.


“You were so mean,” Lexie summarized, but she did give Riley a hug and kiss him on the forehead to make it all better.


Max on the other hand, while not angry with Riley and the shouting, was still under the kitchen table with Toby. The black lab, Riley’s black lab, was between Max and Riley in a protective furry wall.


“It’s okay Tobes, I got this,” Riley tried to fold all six-four of himself under the wood. He got caught on a bench, his neck burned, his stomach was in knots, but nothing was going to stop him from getting to Max. Toby did eventually move to one side but not too far. Toby may well have been Riley’s dog at the start, but he and Max were inseparable now.


“Max, buddy?” he began, and Max at least looked up at him for a split second. “You okay?”


“M’okay,” Max said. “You’re noisy.”


At least he wasn’t rocking, or stimming. He was just sitting with his dog in his favorite place under the kitchen table.


“Is everything okay?” Carol said from behind him. He scrambled back and brushed himself off. “Riley?”


“I shouted,” Riley explained simply.


“At the kids?” Carol asked, aghast, as if that was the ultimate sin in her eyes. Which, to be fair, it was in Riley’s as well. He and Jack didn’t shout, they cajoled, and bargained, and ran a happy house. Most of the time, anyway. Just not this morning.


“No, at Jack.”


“Is Max okay?” she peered under the table and smiled at Max. He adored her, the kids all loved their nanny, probably quite a bit more than they loved their dad today.


“He seems fine.” Riley peered out of the window at where Jack had gone. The damage had been done, but Connie and Lexie were chatting to each other, Max was with Carol and he needed to go and make things right with Jack.


“I think we’re okay in here,” Carol said, “Go find Jack.”


Riley shot her a grateful glance, and as he left the kitchen he heard Lexie telling Carol that her Pappa had a headache and that she’d kissed it better. When he closed the door it was just him and the ranch and finding Jack. It didn’t take him long; he was outside their barn, looking up at the siding, with his feet apart and his arms crossed over his chest.


Riley inhaled the fresh morning air and pulled back his shoulders. He could do this; he could ignore the pain in his head now it had lessened a little, he could push back the nausea, and he could go and apologize to Jack for being a fucking idiot.


“I’m sorry,” he murmured, coming to a stop next to Jack, only a few inches separating their arms. Jack didn’t move.


“It’s okay.” Although it didn’t sound okay at all. Okay was one of those words that meant nothing in the context of an argument, it was a word that plastered over cracks in a relationship. Okay was quiet and tight-lipped silences and Riley recalled okay from when he was a kid.


He hated okay.


“It’s not okay, I have a headache and I didn’t mean any of what I said.”


“You didn’t mean to say that life would be easier if you didn’t have to listen to me?” Jack’s voice was low and serious, and Riley winced.


“You were saying too much, and I couldn’t think.”


Their discussion had started in the bedroom.


“I asked if you’d made an appointment to see someone about the headaches.”


“I know—”


“And why you were limping again—”


“Jack—”


“And why you weren’t sleeping, and why you spent so much time at the office, and why the fuck have we not used the barn in over a month?”


The barn wasn’t just the barn, it was a euphemism for sex. They hadn’t been together in a month, over a month now. How did Riley explain that he’d been at the office, sometimes with the blinds shut, closing out the light, sleeping? How did he explain he didn’t want to see a doctor because the headaches scared him? And how the hell did he tell Jack he was limping because every single one of his muscles hurt, because he was tired, because it was all too much?


“Jack, I’m sorry.”


“You’re not, Riley, because you won’t listen to me.” Jack pointed at the barn. “I’m thinking we turn this into a games room for the kids.”


Riley gripped Jack’s arm. “No, what the hell?” His tension fled and in its place was panic. This was their space. Sometimes they came out here to talk, to hide away from the world, but it was also the one place they had the hottest sex he’d ever experienced. He wanted that again, but he was so tired, every time he turned over in bed his neck hurt, and his head pounded, and his leg ached, and he was fucking tired of it all. “Jack, I’m sorry, don’t…”


Jack turned to face him, and his expression wasn’t angry. “Either you go to the doctor, right here, right now, or I start clearing the place for a pool table.” He looked deadly serious, and Riley couldn’t tell if this was an empty threat. Then Jack softened, cradled his face and pressed a kiss to his forehead. “Riley, please.”


Just those two words pierced the fear in Riley, he couldn’t stop the pain, or the threat of being sick, or not sleeping, but whatever was wrong, Jack would be there for him.


“I’m scared,” Riley murmured.


Jack gathered him close. “You think I’m not?”


“Please don’t,” Riley said against Jack’s neck. His words sounded slurred and fear made him sway. What the hell? “Please don’t let me chase you away.”


“I won’t.”


And that was the last thing he heard as his world went to black.

 

Find Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words 5 Star Review Here.

.



November 15 – Sexy Erotic Xciting, Gay Media Reviews
November 21 – Making It Happen, Mirrigold: Mutterings & Musings
November 23 – Padme’s Library
November 25 – Dog-Eared Dadydreams
November 27 – Valerie Ullmer, The Geekery Book Review
November 29 – Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Bayou Book Junkie, Jim’s Reading Room, Wicked Reads

Author Bio

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
www.rjscott.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/author.rjscott?ref=ts&fref=ts
www.goodreads.com/author/show/3432558.R_J_Scott
twitter.com/Rjscott_author
www.librarything.com/author/scottrj

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Review Tour and Giveaway for Deacon’s Law (Heroes #3) by RJ Scott (excerpt)

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Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Length: 50,000 words approx.
 
Heroes Series
 
A Reason To Stay (Book #1) – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Last Marine Standing (Book #2) – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

How can you trust the man who tried to kill you?


Undercover cop Deacon Shepherd lost everything trying to maintain his cover – the man he loved and the future he craved. He walked away and never looked back because it was the only way to keep Rafael alive.


The last thing he needs is to be dragged back in that world, but an attempt on Rafael’s life is enough to make him risk his heart again.


Rafael ‘Rafe’ Ramirez wakes up in the hospital, the victim of a hit and run. He’s horrified when the first face he sees is that of the man who betrayed him and left him for dead three years before. Witness protection had stripped Rafe of his family and friends, and now it seems his sacrifice to bring his Uncle to justice was for nothing.


Someone wants Rafe dead, and the only way he can stay alive is to go with the murdering drug dealer who broke his heart. But how can he ever trust Deacon, and how can Deacon protect Rafe without falling in love all over again?


 

Excerpt
 

Rafe opened his eyes, attempting to focus on the ceiling above him. He tried to lift his hand, but it felt as if there was lead in his veins, everything heavy and he couldn’t move. They’d told him he was getting better, so what the hell had happened? Had he relapsed? Why was he convinced that they’d taken him somewhere in an ambulance? That he’d leaned against a leather jacket that smelled of sunshine and soap? He blinked until the ceiling finally coalesced into the tiles he was familiar with.


Only there were no tiles.


Instead, the ceiling was a smooth white, and there were no strip lights, just a lampshade in a curious shade of blue. He blinked again. This didn’t make sense. 


But when he opened his eyes, nothing had changed. The ceiling was still white, the lampshade blue, and the drapes at the window matched the shade. The drapes. There were drapes at the window. Confusion morphed into panic and he turned his head to the right to get a better feel for where he was and he saw…him.


Sprawled awkwardly in the chair, his head back, long limbs this way and that, clearly too big for the chair, was a specter from a past that wouldn’t leave him alone.


Deacon.


Intense fear sliced into Rafe.


They’d found him, had him strapped to a bed…was it Deacon who’d tracked him down and driven a car at him? He was paralyzed with a fear that made it hard to breathe, and he yanked at his hand, hoping to escape his restraints, only he wasn’t tied down, there was no rope. Instead his hand came up fast and he rolled sideways. Catching himself and coming off the bed, forgetting the fact that his leg was in a cast and toppling sideways, falling with a crash into a cabinet. He flailed but couldn’t stop himself falling, and he knew this was it – this time he was really going to die.


Deacon was up and at his side in an instant, and Rafe wanted to shut his eyes, wanted to block out seeing Deacon’s face again as he died, but he had to watch. He wanted Deacon to see his fear, and maybe that would stop him; maybe he could make Deacon stop and think.


“Shit, Rafe— Craig,” Deacon said, and reached for him, grasping his arms.


Terror became ice inside him, and Rafe stopped fighting; like a deer caught in headlights, he froze.


“What happened?” A second man stood in the doorway, someone Rafe didn’t know – tall, dark and dangerous-looking. Maybe this new arrival could stop Deacon?


“Help me,” Rafe forced out, looking past Deacon, scrambling to stand as the ice melted and he pushed himself to move.


“He woke up, saw me, and fell out of bed,” Deacon said, and the other man came right in. There were two of them, and there was little Rafe could do to get away. There and then, he screwed his eyes shut; nothing was going to save him now.


But there was no pain, no bullet. Instead, the two men helped him to stand, and then he felt the bed at the back of his thighs and they sat him down.


“Are you okay?” Deacon asked. Even with his eyes shut, Rafe recognized his voice. He would never forget the tone of it, or the coldness of the man who’d tried to kill him. He said nothing.


“Open your eyes,” the other man asked.


No.


“Craig? Rafe? My name is Mac. We’re here to help you.”


But fear was choking him and he couldn’t breathe. “No,” he managed between attempts to inhale enough oxygen not to pass out.


“He’s panicking. What the hell did you do, D?”


“Tried to fucking kill him three years ago, remember?”

Author Bio

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.



mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
www.rjscott.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/author.rjscott?ref=ts&fref=ts
www.goodreads.com/author/show/3432558.R_J_Scott
twitter.com/Rjscott_author
www.librarything.com/author/scottrj

Giveaway

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Release Blitz and Giveaway Tour – Deacon’s Law (Heroes #3) by RJ Scott

Standard
 
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Length: 50,000 words approx.
 
Heroes Series
 
A Reason To Stay (Book #1) – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Last Marine Standing (Book #2) – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

How can you trust the man who tried to kill you?

Undercover cop Deacon Shepherd lost everything trying to maintain his cover – the man he loved and the future he craved. He walked away and never looked back because it was the only way to keep Rafael alive.

The last thing he needs is to be dragged back in that world, but an attempt on Rafael’s life is enough to make him risk his heart again.

Rafael ‘Rafe’ Ramirez wakes up in the hospital, the victim of a hit and run. He’s horrified when the first face he sees is that of the man who betrayed him and left him for dead three years before. Witness protection had stripped Rafe of his family and friends, and now it seems his sacrifice to bring his Uncle to justice was for nothing.

Someone wants Rafe dead, and the only way he can stay alive is to go with the murdering drug dealer who broke his heart. But how can he ever trust Deacon, and how can Deacon protect Rafe without falling in love all over again?

Excerpt
 

Rafe opened his eyes, attempting to focus on the ceiling above him. He tried to lift his hand, but it felt as if there was lead in his veins, everything heavy and he couldn’t move. They’d told him he was getting better, so what the hell had happened? Had he relapsed? Why was he convinced that they’d taken him somewhere in an ambulance? That he’d leaned against a leather jacket that smelled of sunshine and soap? He blinked until the ceiling finally coalesced into the tiles he was familiar with.

Only there were no tiles.

Instead, the ceiling was a smooth white, and there were no strip lights, just a lampshade in a curious shade of blue. He blinked again. This didn’t make sense. 

But when he opened his eyes, nothing had changed. The ceiling was still white, the lampshade blue, and the drapes at the window matched the shade. The drapes. There were drapes at the window. Confusion morphed into panic and he turned his head to the right to get a better feel for where he was and he saw…him.

Sprawled awkwardly in the chair, his head back, long limbs this way and that, clearly too big for the chair, was a specter from a past that wouldn’t leave him alone.

Deacon.

Intense fear sliced into Rafe.

They’d found him, had him strapped to a bed…was it Deacon who’d tracked him down and driven a car at him? He was paralyzed with a fear that made it hard to breathe, and he yanked at his hand, hoping to escape his restraints, only he wasn’t tied down, there was no rope. Instead his hand came up fast and he rolled sideways. Catching himself and coming off the bed, forgetting the fact that his leg was in a cast and toppling sideways, falling with a crash into a cabinet. He flailed but couldn’t stop himself falling, and he knew this was it – this time he was really going to die.

Deacon was up and at his side in an instant, and Rafe wanted to shut his eyes, wanted to block out seeing Deacon’s face again as he died, but he had to watch. He wanted Deacon to see his fear, and maybe that would stop him; maybe he could make Deacon stop and think.

“Shit, Rafe— Craig,” Deacon said, and reached for him, grasping his arms.

Terror became ice inside him, and Rafe stopped fighting; like a deer caught in headlights, he froze.

“What happened?” A second man stood in the doorway, someone Rafe didn’t know – tall, dark and dangerous-looking. Maybe this new arrival could stop Deacon?

“Help me,” Rafe forced out, looking past Deacon, scrambling to stand as the ice melted and he pushed himself to move.

“He woke up, saw me, and fell out of bed,” Deacon said, and the other man came right in. There were two of them, and there was little Rafe could do to get away. There and then, he screwed his eyes shut; nothing was going to save him now.

But there was no pain, no bullet. Instead, the two men helped him to stand, and then he felt the bed at the back of his thighs and they sat him down.

“Are you okay?” Deacon asked. Even with his eyes shut, Rafe recognized his voice. He would never forget the tone of it, or the coldness of the man who’d tried to kill him. He said nothing.

“Open your eyes,” the other man asked.

No.

“Craig? Rafe? My name is Mac. We’re here to help you.”

But fear was choking him and he couldn’t breathe. “No,” he managed between attempts to inhale enough oxygen not to pass out.

“He’s panicking. What the hell did you do, D?”

“Tried to fucking kill him three years ago, remember?”

Author Bio


RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.


The last time she had a weekís break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldnít defeat.


mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
www.rjscott.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/author.rjscott?ref=ts&fref=ts
www.goodreads.com/author/show/3432558.R_J_Scott
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www.librarything.com/author/scottrj

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A MelanieM Review: A Reason To Stay (Heroes #1) by R.J. Scott

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

A Reason To Stay coverViktor Zavodny’s first love growing up was always the Navy.  Nothing and no one was going to distract him from that goal, not even a gorgeous 16 year old with a crush on him, Aiden Coleman.  For  Aiden, 18 year old Viktor was his first and only love, but Viktor determination to become a SEAL made him callously disregard Aiden, something Aiden has never forgotten.  Then Viktor Zavodny left his family and home town of Steepleshend to join the SEALS, and  a broken hearted young Aiden Coleman joined the police force.

It would be years before the men met again. Viktor returned home on leave to recuperate from severe injuries acquired on his last mission. The last  thing he expected or wanted to do was run into Aiden. But again sparks fly between them only for Aiden to watch Viktor leave once more on a mission with his SEAL outfit.  Now Aiden swore never again would he let Viktor back into his heart but neither man expected the danger that existed on the mountains  above town.

When Viktor’s nephew is found  wounded and unconscious in the snow, lying along side a dead man. Well the traumatic events bring Viktor back to town to look after his family and look into the events that put his nephew in the hospital.  Handling the investigation is none other than Deputy Sheriff Aiden Coleman. Aiden isn’t pleased to find an angry SEAL in his office demanding to be included in the investigation, especially since its Viktor.  In order to bring down the people behind his nephew’s injuries and the dead body discovered beside him, Aiden and Viktor will have to put aside their personal issues and work  together to find the truth and maybe finally the path to each other.

In Worlds Collide (Sanctuary #7)  main character Dale needs a bomb defused aboard a plane so he calls on his lover Joseph and Joseph’s SEAL team to help him out.  The team bomb expert just happened to be a hot headed smartass by the name of Viktor Zavodny, caught in the middle of a threesome when summoned to the phone.  That fascinating first look at Viktor Zavodny, the filling in the middle of a husband and wife sexual sandwich, was enough for people to clamor to have his story.  That short glimpse into the sexy,confounding puzzle that was Viktor Zavodny made us want to know more about him and now Scott has given it to us.  A Reason To Stay, the first book in RJ Scott’s new Heroes series, delves into Viktor’s background and status in the SEAL Team we got to know through Joseph and Dale in their Sanctuary stories.

I have to admit a real fondness for those “tough as nails” inscrutable men that RJ Scott writes so well. Having Viktor comes out of the same team that gave us Joseph gives us an instant understanding of the type of man he is and the skill set he has had to acquire to  become a member of such a covert unit.  We also know what a tight knit band of brothers this group of men have become to one another.  And it’s become apparent (in the Sanctuary novels and here) that  it is a unit in flux, members deciding to op out for a family and a life less defined by a mission and danger.

Viktor’s first appearance in this story happens when he is home to recuperate from injuries received while on a mission.  He is tired, wounded, and able to see what he has been missing out on with his sister and his beloved nephew,  Then he hooks up with Aiden and things start to get emotionally scary for someone with a designated life ahead of him.  Does he come across as insensitive or a bit of a jerk? Possibly but he has never  made any effort to cover up his priorities, no matter how much others may wish differently.  I liked that about Viktor, he is not an easy person to like nor is that a requisite for his profession.  Scott paints a portrait of a man on the verge of a change even if he is not aware of it himself and it works beautifully here in context.

Aiden is a much more accessible character because so many of us can relate to him and his history.  Aiden fell early and hard for Viktor when he was sixteen and never recovered from his heartbreaking first love.  No matter what Aiden tells himself intellectually, emotionally he is still open and very vulnerable when it comes to Viktor and their past dealings.  So when Viktor returns, we absolutely get that Aiden is conflicted about his feelings for Viktor.  Scott actually builds upon those complications and complexities between the men throughout the story and it makes for a more interesting and less idealized relationship between them.  Trust me when I say this is not your heart and flowers sort of romance.  That wouldn’t be realistic for these men or their herky jerky type of romance.

Another element of RJ Scott’s stories is how well she writes adolescents.  Viktor’s nephew Ben has a rather large part to play in the events that unfold here.  Ben idolizes his uncle and wants to be exactly like him,  Ben is a wonderful character, fully realized and totally believable.  And because he is so real to us, his safety becomes as important a factor for us as it does for Viktor.

For Viktor, Ben is a mile marker is his life. On the rare occassions Viktor returns home, he notices of all the changes in Ben in his absence. And those changes highlight what Viktor has missed out on as well as the personal sacrifices he has made in order to be a SEAL.  Perspective is something that has been lacking in Viktor’s life and Ben is the one area where it snaps into place in a manner Viktor is able to accept.  Again, another very realistic element among many in this story.

I loved the setting in the Green Mountains and RJ Scott has certainly done her homework as to the level of fitness and preparation required to take on a winter hike into that terrain. Not just there either.  Scott makes mention of the fact that a sugar shack is where the maple sap is boiled into syrup.  Again, another indication that this author has done her homework even to the smallest detail.  Or the larger ones like the guns, explosions and gear needed for those wild assignments and escapades that happen in A Reason To Stay.  There is certainly a lot of flash bang excitement for the buck (or should I say pound) here in her narrative.  Several of the Sanctuary operatives make momentary appearances from Joseph (still a SEAL), Manny, and Kayden Summers.  Its great to see them however briefly as I love that series and its characters and it made sense for them to do so.

What I loved about this book?  The sheer physicality of these men and the sometimes abrasive aspect of their relationship.  It’s hard to call this a typical romance because its not.  Nor should it be.  There is plenty of action, fights, nefarious goings on to along with  the arrogance, stubbornness, and a determination that is almost cellular from Viktor as well as Aiden.  Sometimes the testosterone is only tempered by the sweetness of the scenes between Viktor and his sister, or Aiden and his friend Sam.

The writing here is as smooth as a new fallen snow and the plot has plenty of layers for everyone to enjoy.  What will some people have issues with?  Probably the lack of a romance or romantic scenes between  Viktor and Aiden.  If you are looking for that sort of romantic story, than this is probably not the story for you.  But if you are looking for an action adventure story with believable main characters with a turbulent history behind them and an attraction that just won’t go away, then you will love this story and Viktor and Aiden.

RJ Scott already has the second story, Last Marine Standing (Heroes #2), written.  It will be released in June 2014 and features Sam Larsen from A Reason To Stay.  I can’t wait to see what the author has in store for him.  In the meantime, pick this up and get acquainted with some wonderful characters sure to pop up in the next story in the series.  Consider this another highly recommended story from this wonderful author.

Cover art by Meredith Russell who does a great job in depicting the characters and flavor of the story.

Buy Links: Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK)Smashwords | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

 Book Details:

ebook, 267 pages
Published April 11th 2014 by Love Lane Books (first published April 9th 2014)
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://rjscottauthor.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/AReasonToStayHeroes.html
seriesHeroes #1

Books in the Heroes series to date:

A Reason To Stay (Heroes #1)
Last Marine Standing (Heroes #2)
Deacon’s Law (Heroes, #3)  coming October 9

 

 

 

Review Tour and Giveaway for First Season (Harrisburg Railers #2) by RJ Scott & VL Locey

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Length: 55,700 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Changing Lines (Book #1) – Amazon US | Amazon UK | KOBO | Smashwords | B&N | iTunes
 
Blurb


Layton wants success, Adler wants family, how can love make both these things possible?

Layton Foxx works hard for what he has. The condo, the career, the chance to make his mark, is all down to the sacrifices he has made. With tragedy in his past, he doesn’t want or need love. Then he meets Adler Lockhart, the extroverted, sexy winger for the Harrisburg Railers and abruptly he can’t avoid love even if he wanted to.

Adler Lockhart has had everything handed to him his whole life. Cars, villas, cash, college tuition at the finest Ivy League schools. The only things he doesn’t have are parents who care or the love of a good man. Then Layton walks into his privileged life and shows him what real love can be like.

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words 4.5  out of 5 star review here.

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.



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V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, Dr. Who, Torchwood, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.



Website: http://vlloceyauthor.com/
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A MelanieM Review: By The Numbers (Sanctuary #10) by R.J. Scott (series finale)

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

 

The final book in the Sanctuary series

Secrets and lies threaten Brandon and Daniel’s new love.

Brandon Hoselton is running scared, finding security in his obsession with patterns and numbers. With his family threatened, he feels he has nowhere left to go, and even considers ending his life to keep them safe. Until Sanctuary, in the shape of the enigmatic Daniel Karnes, gives him a reason to stay alive and offers the possibility of a future free from fear.

Former SEAL Daniel is new to Sanctuary, tasked with watching Brandon, a brilliant geek with way too many secrets. Falling in love with quirky Brandon is easy; now he just has to make sure secrets don’t end up with them both dying.

The only way of destroying Varga is to cut the crime boss’s money, and the two men become part of an intricate take-down involving millions of dollars. But Brandon has a secret he can never share with Daniel, and their new love is at stake.

When the villain has murder in mind, sometimes the only way to stay alive is to lie.

RJ Scott’s The Sanctuary series has been a long, wild, and convoluted one.  It started with a series of murders, conspiracies and the high society Bullen family and has worked it way here to the series finale and its central villain, one unknown at the start.  It’s been quite the ride! A wonderful rollercoaster of high action, sex, intrigue and romance! I’ve loved every minute and word of it.

I have to admit I have had my favorite among all the couple here.  Who hasn’t? Dale and Joseph?  The former Navy SEALS? Top of my list, can’t help it, they are so hot together.  And they are one of the original couples starting way back in The Only Easy Day (Sanctuary #2).  One half of the pair makes a brief appearance here.  Other characters (and mentions of their partners) pop up here.  Kayden Summers from Face Value (Sanctuary #3), Manny (from every book, and his own Full Circle (Sanctuary #5). So many couples and stories and one to wrap it all up.  I think a series finale has a bigger job than just a regular installment and that’s a heavy load for any novel to carry.

By The Numbers picks up almost exactly where Ghost leaves off.  Brandon and his sisters are in a Sanctuary safe house being guarded by Daniel Karnes.  If you are a reader new to the series, then this is not the time to dive into these books.  You are going to be lost. Stop reading and head back to book 1, Guarding Morgan.  RJ Scott starts with the assumptions that you’ve been with the series all along and have the background knowledge to understand the complex relationships and dynamics playing out on the page.  And they are plenty!  Especially with the sisters history and Brandon’s which is ugly and steeped in child slavery and crime.

The majority of this book is Sanctuary moving forward to taking down Varga while Brandon fights internally in the safe house with a secret that could be disastrous for all.  It’s a wonderful ploy, meant to keep readers on their seats, which is does.  But it also does something less wonderful to the romance of Brandon and Daniel which is going on at the same time.  For me, it lessened their connection to each other, made the ending less believable.  The story is told from multiple povs, necessary for this type of tale where each character is a key player in a complicated plot.  To trust?  Not to trust?  To act? Not to act? The action is wonderful, but I think it happens at the expense of the romance, which is sort of fine.  Taking down Varge should be the priority here above all else and that’s how it comes off in the story.

By The Numbers was a terrific high action tale!  The tension at the end, especially with Brandon was so well done, that I was on the edge of my seat!  As a M/M contemporary suspense story, I gobbled it right up.  As a series finale, well, I’m not sure it lived up to my expectations, especially in the romance department.  Brandon never had the chance to grow on me that the other characters did, nor did his relationship with Daniel.  Their time together was sacrificed for the needs to take down Varga, a complicated game to be sure.   I definitely enjoyed it and I love this series and highly recommend it.

Cover art by Meredith Russell works for the characters and series.

Sales Links

Book Details:

ebook, 136 pages
Published May 17th 2017 by Love Lane Books Limited (first published May 15th 2017)
ISBN13 9781785640780

A MelanieM Review Tour: Moments by RJ Scott

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

 

An actor on possession charges, hell bent on destroying his own life meets a man who quietly works to make the world a better place.

Jacob Riley is a typical Hollywood former child star with issues. He has already done prison time and at the age of twenty-six has been arrested again.

Ethan Myers is the owner and manager of Macs, an education center providing teaching and learning to local low income families. Losing his partner to cancer leaves him lost and alone and he buries himself in his work to start to mend his broken heart.

Sparks fly when Jacob has to complete his community service at Macs. Their relationship grows against a background of disenfranchised street gang members, arson, the Oscars, and despite their prejudices.

Can Jacob Riley be saved?

RJ Scott has a clear eyed view of addiction and its effects on the person in the center but all of those around them.  Moments pulls us into the ugly mindset of Jacob at the beginning of the story, making it clear to the reader what his self destructive life style is costing him and how it is hurting those next to him.  Jacob is deep in self denial, easily placing the blame for all his problems everywhere but where it belongs, on himself.  Jacob is a dislikable piece of work, and Scott has done her homework on addictions when creating a portrait of a man whose life is spiraling out of control.  It is realistic, and absolutely believable.  It will take half the story before the reader will start to connect with Jacob but we do and then we start to hope that he will find his way clear.

Scott’s other characters are equally complex and endearing, from Ethan to those secondary characters whose lives are enriched by Mac’s. Scott gives the reader a real feel for the spirit of community that exists in such a situation as well as the dangers that are inherent by locating the center near active gang influences.  The author has a number of plot threads in motion in the story, almost too many to fully explore in this length book. I could wish that the gang element had been enlarged, especially considering the importance it plays in the lives of three characters so central to  the story.  Certain gang members appear, act accordingly as gangs would and then disappear for the rest of the novel.  And another surprising element occurs late in the story with no hint that it might occur earlier in the narrative.  It would have been nice to have laid a foundation for such actions earlier because for me to have that person act as they did made no sense as far as their personality and character was concerned.  Sorry to be vague, but necessary so as not to give away any spoilers.

But those concerns aside, Moments has a terrific story to tell and RJ Scott delivers it concisely, and with great clarity about her subject.  I connected with these characters and that kept me by their sides every step of the way to the end.  Don’t hesitate to pick this one up!

Cover art by Meredith Russell is nice and works for the character but I would have liked to have more content involved in the design.

Sales Links:

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2nD5vcE

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2nDg1k2

Book Details:

ebook, 3rd edition
Published April 12th 2017 by Love Lane Books Limited (first published October 23rd 2010)
URL http://rjscottauthor.blogspot.co.uk/2017/03/moments-re-issue-coming-12-april.html

Release Blitz Tour and Giveaway – Moments by RJ Scott (excerpt)

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Buy Links:

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2nD5vcE

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2nDg1k2


Cover: Meredith Russell


Length: 54,000 words

An actor on possession charges, hell bent on destroying his own life meets a man who quietly works to make the world a better place.

Jacob Riley is a typical Hollywood former child star with issues. He has already done prison time and at the age of twenty-six has been arrested again.

Ethan Myers is the owner and manager of Macs, an education center providing teaching and learning to local low income families. Losing his partner to cancer leaves him lost and alone and he buries himself in his work to start to mend his broken heart.

Sparks fly when Jacob has to complete his community service at Macs. Their relationship grows against a background of disenfranchised street gang members, arson, the Oscars, and despite their prejudices.

Can Jacob Riley be saved?

Chapter One

Jacob Riley slammed the door to the small conference room and stomped to the window to stare moodily at the bright, sunshine-filled day outside. He twisted both hands tight into his hair in frustration, wondering how the fuck this day had all gone to hell. His lawyers—his fucking well-paid lawyers—had said they’d get him off, not land him with some lame-ass probation, community service crap.

Four months, in some lame ass community program. Jeez, like he was going to be taught anything by cleaning streets or dealing with people’s trash.

The TV in the corner showed some trashy entertainment show, where a smug presenter was reporting the latest news on his case, live, embellished with words that made Jacob cringe. There were even experts on there talking about the child star gone bad. Experts in what? Character assassination, apparently. He tried his hardest to tune it out but it was nigh on impossible—it must have been the tenth time the clip of the sentence being handed out had been played.

The reporter continued, “The news of B-list actor Jacob Riley’s arrest boosted the audience figures for the half season’s finale of his show, End Game, to their highest point in eight months.”

Jacob huffed a sigh, he guessed that was one piece of good news to come out of this whole mess.

Then expert one repeated what he’d said already, “He’s been offered a lifeline in a county rehab program. He showed a lot of promise, and I think this could be a good thing for him.”

Jacob briefly thought of throwing his cell phone at the TV.

“Well you may be right there; his spokesperson said he’s concentrating on work and himself. What that means, we don’t know.”

“We wish him luck.”

The anchor turned to face the camera, that smug fucking smile back again. “Well, folks, here’s hoping Jacob Riley, one of TV’s highest earning actors, proves to be a recovering addict who actually turns their life around.”

Jesus Christ, talk about dramatic.

“The show is on a filming hiatus,” Samantha, his PA, replied carefully from just inside the door. “I’ve just got off the phone with your agent and the Network will delay your return to Game until you’re free to come back. Remember, with Christmas soon the way; we have some room to move here.”

Jacob spun on his heel. His quiet, calm assistant stood holding a clipboard, a cellphone balanced on top of it.

“Of course they’ll delay my return,” he summarized. The Network would be stupid to lose him; he was convinced of it. End Game was his show. Jacob’s character was pivotal, the star of the whole goddamned series.

“There was some talk of replacing you.”

“They wouldn’t fucking dare.”

Samantha smiled at him, but it was insincere and didn’t reach her eyes. She used to smile all the time, but for some reason, she’d stopped now. Then she pulled back her shoulders. “Your agent says you’re lucky you play a drug-taking manic depressive. Otherwise he swears they would have canned you today, no hesitation.”

Was she trying to make him feel better? “Sam, do I look like I give a fuck what my shit agent says?”

“You need—”

“I don’t need him to tell me I’m lucky; it’s the Network that is lucky. They push me off the show, and they’ll see their ratings drop overnight. No one loses Jacob Riley and sees their show survive.”

Resentment bubbled up inside him.

Samantha cleared her throat. “Look, Jacob, we have four months to get you into a program and complete your work through the community service,” she continued. Her patient tone measuring every word, talking to him as if he were a small child—he hated every syllable.

“No,” Jacob snapped, balling his temper and his dismissal of her into that one word. She stepped away from him to stand against the door. “Jacob—”

“I’m not cleaning streets; I’m not searching for rubbish or any of the usual crap they put celebrities through to humiliate us.”

“It’s not meant to be a humiliation. But it is a punishment,” Sam said, raising her free hand in an attempt to placate him. Her cell phone slid off the clipboard and tumbled to the floor.

Jacob listened, but what she’d said only served to increase his temper. He could feel the itch of addiction under his skin, and it terrified him. Although he would never admit it, he was out of control, and it was eating away at him.

In over a year, he hadn’t wanted a hit as badly as he did at this moment. Frustration and anger burst out of him with uncontrolled force. He crowded her against the door. “I don’t pay you to get up in my face, Sam,” he snarled.

“You’re scaring me, Jacob,” Samantha said firmly, backing as close to the wood as she could.

“You don’t know what this is like,” he shouted.

“Jacob. Please…” There were tears in her eyes, pain and real fear in her voice. Something in the simple “please” reached through his anger. What was he doing?

“Fuck,” he said tiredly. Half closing his eyes, he took a deep breath. It was the first time in their relationship he’d seen fear in Sam’s eyes, and it scared the hell out of him. Was she afraid of him? What should he say? How the hell could he—?

“Your father is waiting for you in the next room,” Sam said, but wouldn’t look him in the eyes.

Jacob went from guilt straight back to feeling aggrieved.

“Great,” Jacob stepped back, watching as Samantha edged away from him.

“Your dad just wants to help. He knows of this place you can go for the next—”

“He’s the one who turned me in!”

“He’s waiting, and there’s something else,” she said, this time with steel in her words. “I was going to leave this until after Christmas when filming ended, but there is no point now. You’re an asshole, and I quit.” Quietly, she turned her back and left the room, and he felt a moment of shock.

“What?” she didn’t stop. “Don’t come running back begging for your fucking job!” he shouted after her.

She didn’t even look at him, but he heard her words.

“I won’t come back.”

Her loss.

Frustrated, angry, and looking for someone to blame was not how Jacob should have gone to a meeting with his father, but he didn’t have a choice. The whole freaking world was against him, and none of this was his fault.

“I’ve pulled strings, son, and arranged to get you into a new type of program, something different. It has an original approach, and it’s very exclusive.” Joe Riley stood stiff and straight in front of Jacob.

Jacob slouched, arms across his chest, unwilling to show even the slightest interest.

“Yeah,” he said when his dad remained quiet.

“I’ve made a hefty donation to get you accepted. The only stipulation was that you are clean.”

Jacob looked into his father’s gray-blue eyes then shrugged. He’d heard all too clearly the question under Joe Riley’s statement, and hated him for it. A year—a damn year.

Joe closed his eyes and sighed. “Isn’t there something dramatic you feel you have to say at this point, Jacob?”

“If I thought you would actually listen to me—just once—maybe I would have something to say,” Jacob said.

“Are you?”

“Am I what?”

“Jacob, are you clean?” Joe asked.

“Fuck you, Dad,” Jacob snapped, “I’ve been clean for a year, and you damn well know it.”

His dad crossed his arms and shook his head. “No, I don’t know that. I know what you told your mother and me, and then I find you mixing with the same lowlifes you knew six years ago. What was I supposed to think? What was I supposed to do? Tell me, son?”

“Call the cops on me, obviously.” Jacob clenched his hands into tight fists at his sides.

“Do you think it was easy for me to do this, Jacob? Call the police on my son?”

“Yeah. Yeah, I do.” He’d long ago convinced himself that his dad had perversely enjoyed turning him in, and he chose to ignore the pained expression that crossed his dad’s face. “It kinda solves all those issues around having to maybe—I don’t know—talk to me instead?”

“You don’t listen.”

“No, Dad, you’re the one who doesn’t listen.”

Joe inhaled sharply as if he had been physically hit, and Jacob wondered how his dad was going to defend his parenting skills this time. “Think about your mother in this. What if you died? Can you picture her visiting a morgue, identifying your body, and seeing track marks on your arms? She cried so much over you last time and refused to let me get involved. But this time, hell Jacob we had to do something, had to stop you from self-destructing.”

Jacob tugged self-consciously at his sleeves, anger building inside him. He had been clean for well over a year. Why didn’t anyone trust him? He felt vulnerable for a moment, like a small child, and then he pushed that weakness to one side, resumed the role of aggrieved man he was playing today, and rolled his eyes.

“Now who’s being dramatic?” he spat. “I had the stuff in my car for a friend, didn’t mean I was using.”

“You know how it looks, and the police agreed.”

“You could have tried asking me why I had it on me.”

“And you wouldn’t have lied to us?” Joe asked simply, his voice calm. Jacob didn’t answer. He wasn’t going to rise to the bait. “This is your last chance. Take it. You could make something of yourself if you tried.”

Jacob inhaled sharply.

“So what the hell do you call two movies and a successful TV series? Nothing?” His parents had never liked that he had decided to pursue acting. They’d always made it very clear that they expected him to join the family construction firm. He’d endured several wearying years of forcing and badgering, but always knew what he wanted to do. He didn’t want to build skyscrapers and shopping malls; he wanted to act.

“It isn’t even about what you do anymore. You’re killing yourself. And I swear, Jacob, if you ruin this last chance, I will hold back every penny of your inheritance.”

“Not that shit again.”

“I mean it—”

“I make three million a movie, and ninety thousand for every episode of End Game. Seriously—you really think your money matters to me?”

“I swear every penny will go to your brother,” Joe continued, but Jacob had heard that threat before too, and it had the same impact as always—no impact at all.

“That loser?”

“Tell me, why is Micah the loser? He has a career, a wife, a great kid—your nephew. He has a life.”

“I’ve got a freaking career, Dad, and let’s face it—kids? That isn’t going to happen. I’m gay!” Frustrated, Jacob pushed his fingers through his hair and closed his eyes.

“I’m not arguing. This isn’t about some petty brotherly feud, or who is happy and who isn’t. You had every advantage—everything money could buy, every ounce of love your mother and I had in us. Son, please. This is your life, and your mom and I are desperate for you to see that! But you don’t seem to give a damn about it.”

“Well, maybe I don’t.”

“For God’s sake, stop being so damn melodramatic. As far as I’m concerned, we’re done talking. Go home and get some clothing together. Benjamin is outside. He’ll take you home, and then he’ll drive you down tomorrow.”

“And if I say no?”

“You can’t. I’ve pulled strings, but at the end of the day, it’s either this or you’re back in prison. This program is the only reason you’re not back there now.”

Shit.

 

 

 

Author Bio

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.



mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
www.rjscott.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/author.rjscott?ref=ts&fref=ts
www.goodreads.com/author/show/3432558.R_J_Scott
twitter.com/Rjscott_author
www.librarything.com/author/scottrj

 

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