I've got a nice little treat for you, my Jane-ish lovelies: an excerpt of the upcoming Persuade Me, by Juliet Archer. You may recall the fantastic character interview we had a few days ago with Persuade Me's leading man, Dr. Rick Wentworth...
Check this out, and prepare to add Persuade Me to your to-read pile!
Charles took a little turning off the lane, beside a large sign saying ‘Uppercross Manor’, and Rick followed him blindly. Down a side path, into a sudden fragrance of lavender, across a wide sunny terrace strewn with kids’ toys. Then through a door and –
Two worlds collided. The one he inhabited now, with its ship-like order and restraint; and the one he’d glimpsed ten years ago. With a girl who’d once wiggled her toes at him until he caught hold of her small, perfect foot and covered it in kisses.
This girl. These toes. This foot.
He dragged his gaze to her face. She was too busy with the little boy to notice him, so he had several long seconds to study her haggard, unkempt appearance. He felt oddly pleased that she’d lost her looks; especially since she wouldn’t see much change in his.
At last, she glanced up and their eyes met. He watched her smile fade and her face go rigid with disbelief; then she flushed and looked away.
The boy broke the strained silence. ‘Who dat man?’
Charles breezed in – Rick hadn’t even realised that he’d gone out of the room – and said, ‘That’s Rick, he’s coming up to see our lake. Sorry, Rick, haven’t introduced you. This is Anna, Mona’s sister, and my son, Harry. By the way, Anna, have you seen my spare rod?’
She gave him a stunned look, but said nothing.
Charles’s voice softened noticeably. ‘Don’t worry, you’re obviously on another planet, I’ll check the shed.’ He turned to Rick and added, ‘She’s whacked – my other son sprained his ankle yesterday and he’s had a bit of a restless night. Poor Anna bore the brunt, she’s wonderful with the children, always happy to come and help us out.’
Quite the little ménage à trois, Rick thought sourly. He cleared his throat, muttered ‘Hi’ and followed Charles outside.
It was over. He’d met her again and he’d felt nothing. Nothing at all.
The second in Juliet Archer's Darcy & Friends series. When do you let your heart rule your head? As far as men are concerned, Anna Elliot is stuck in the past. No one can compare to Rick Wentworth, the man she was persuaded to give up eight years ago. Meanwhile, Rick's moved on - and up. He's got a successful career and a carefully controlled love life where his heart doesn't get a look in. The words 'forgive and forget' aren't in Rick's vocabulary. The word 'regret' is definitely in Anna's. When they meet again, can she persuade him that their lost love is worth a second chance?