Good morning everyone! ScatteredThoughtsandRogueWords is so happy to have LB Gregg here with us today. She has been a favorite of mine ever since I discovered her Romano and Albright series as well as her newish Cornwall books. She is stopping by today to promote her new release How I Met Your Father. I loved this story and think you will too. So without further ado, here is LB Gregg:
Hi! My name is LB Gregg and I write m/m romantic comedies. Thanks for stopping by on the How I Met Your Father blog tour. I’m thrilled to be part of the Home for the Holidays collection and want to encourage you to purchase my book—as Riptide will donate 20% of the proceeds of the sale of this book, and the collection, to the Ali Forney Center in New York. The centers mission “is to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning (LGBTQ) youth from the harm of homelessness, and to support them in becoming safe and independent as they move from adolescence to adulthood.”
Exclusive How I Met Your Father excerpt!
“Gee. I wish my dad had been as cool as you.”
That cracked his veneer. I would have said more, but Jack’s gaze found mine, and what I saw reflected there wasn’t annoyance. It was amusement. He flicked ash into the sand, and his wink made me glad it was dark under the trees.
Laid up, huh? My pleasure adding to your list of conquests, Mr. Hayes.”
And this time he didn’t just smile. He bowed.
“Please.” I rolled my eyes. “I hiccupped. I wasn’t trying to be smooth or add notches to some imaginary belt.” Which was admittedly filled with all manner of notches. “You pursued me. And how in the hell did you hear me in the bar?”
“I came in from the beach.” The glowing end of his cigar waved toward Nevis’s shore. “They left the hotel without me, too.”
He’d taken the same path from the hotel that I had. He’d come in right after me, following me again, though he’d waited before he’d approached his family. Lurking in the shadows. What wasn’t weird about that?
“You kids did a nice job. Catchy.”
Kids. I resisted the urge to sit taller. “Gee. Thanks, mister.”
He exhaled a ring of smoke.
I found myself asking, “You really didn’t know who I was?”
“Not a hint. What do I know about music? My daughter listens to women who don’t shave their legs, and my son wears headphones twenty-four seven.”
My ego took a tiny, tiny hit, and damn him, Jack noticed.
“Does it bother you that I didn’t know?”
“Not really. It’s actually refreshing.” How could he possibly know Chuck Kinney, the fucking Chuck Kinney, and not have seen a picture of me at some point? There were photos of us together all over Chuck’s apartment. There were posters of us, actually. Teen Choice Awards. We’d had a picture with the president. Surely he’d Googled Chuck? Wherever Chuck stood, I’d been at his side.
A man like Jack would have practiced due diligence and had his daughter’s fiancé investigated before giving his blessing on any marriage, right? I’d confirmed that both Mandy and Chuck had signed their prenup because that fell under my job description as peacemaker and watchdog for the four of us.
Jack’s keen gaze read me easily. “I bet for you, it’s a pain in the ass that everywhere you go, people think they know you.” His words were uncomfortably astute. “I know I wouldn’t like it.”
“It can be a pain in the ass, but I appreciate the fans.”
“You practice that in a mirror, sport? Because you didn’t look appreciative this afternoon when that woman pointed a camera at you. You bolted.”
The back door slammed, saving me a lame denial, and a woman in a slinky romper tiptoed shakily across the rocky patio. We waited. Jack gazed thoughtfully into the darkness, and I swatted insects and wondered what the hell else he saw. He sort of freaked me out. He’d had my number since the Fasten Seatbelt sign first illuminated.
I shot him a look, but Jack was watching the shoreline, one hand stuffed in his front pocket and his blazer wrinkled manfully behind his arm. White smoke floated around his head.
So far, no one had come looking for us, which was a minor miracle, but TJ and Matt were hitting on anyone with a C cup or higher, and Chuck . . . would appear in the doorway any second now.
The girl in the stilettos joined her friends at the fire pit, and I had one burning question for Jack. “How old are you?”
“Younger than I look. Older than I feel.”
“That’s helpful. You’re supposed to answer the question with a number. Like this: I’m twenty-nine. I’m guessing you’re . . .”
I sucked at guessing anyone’s age, but I gave it a shot. Silver-streaked hair, tan enough to do some work or sports outdoors, ripped from the gym, loaded if the watch was any indication, smoker of Cuban cigars, wearer of fine shoes, father of Mandy—
Holy fuck. The man must be fifty.
“Relax. I’m forty-four.”
My relief must have been evident. It was certainly audible as I sighed.
Jack shook his head. “Not as old as you thought. Thanks.”
“Sorry. I’m really bad at this. And forty-four’s not old. It’s distinguished.”
“Sure. You look twenty, so let’s call it a draw.”
“Twenty?” He would have carded me, too. Maybe I did need a beard. “So you are a pervert.”
His mouth twitched.
“Or did what happened earlier have nothing to do with age? For you, I mean.”
“Didn’t it?” His low words made my neck tingle. He didn’t move closer, but his gaze settled on my mouth like he remembered the feel of his lips on mine. “It had to do with opportunity,” he said slowly. “Adrenaline. Anonymity. Adventure. Age. You didn’t know me. I didn’t know you. And you loved it.”
“I knew you would. I knew it the second I saw you. We could do it again.” He moved closer. “Take our time. Get to know each other.” His words skimmed across my nerves like a caress and Jesus Christ, they called me a player? The man could give lessons. “We could go back to the hotel.”
So tempting. But I remembered Chuck. And Mandy. And Benji’s slightly worshipping gaze. The wedding. Propriety. A bug hit my eye and, thank God, it broke the spell Jack had me under. I smacked another mosquito, and I knew Jack wasn’t playing me—he was playing with me.
LB Gregg writes m/m contemporary romantic comedies for a variety of publishers including Riptide, Carina Press, Samhain and Musa. For information about LB’s books, visit her on the web at lbgregg.com.
Contest Specifics or How To Enter to Get This Fabulous Book:
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The man of your dreams could be sitting right next to you.
Former boy band member Justin Hayes isn’t looking for a man. He just wants a quiet, scandal-free Christmas at home in Chicago, out of the public eye. But his best friend and bandmate is subjecting everyone to his destination wedding, and Justin can’t dodge the “best man” bullet. All he has to do is get to the island on time, survive the reunion, and get Chuck to the altar with as little drama as possible. What could possibly go wrong?
Jack Bassinger’s own plans for a quiet Christmas have been dashed by the summons to his daughter’s hasty wedding with a man Jack has hardly met. On the bumpy flight to the island, he finds himself comforting a nervous — and extremely attractive — young man. One hasty sexual encounter in an airport bathroom later, they both feel much better. No one ever has to know, after all.
Now Justin and Jack must find a way to explore their attraction, despite the distractions of disapproving family members, unexpected announcements, an impromptu concert, and an island paradise that proves there’s no place like home.
Buy Riptide Publishing buy link.Click here to read an excerpt and order How I Met Your Father!