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$15 Release Day Giveaway + 99 ¢ Deal of the Day – The About Face Groom by Karly Stratford

The About Face Groom by Karly Stratford

How much would you bet on true love this Christmas season?
Leon Reyes, tight end for the Denver Storm, plans to spend the Christmas break training and playing video games with his childhood buddies. His plans don’t change when quarterback Will Kent bets him to contact his first love and try to rekindle the flame, because his first love is happily married with two kids. What Leon didn’t count on was rescuing his back-door neighbor and junior-high crush, Sadie Jones from a dog attack. His friends then double-dog-dare Leon to bring Sadie to the block party, and Leon never backs down from a dare. The dare leads to a kiss, and Leon is swept away by things he’d forgotten about Sadie. Things he didn’t realized he wanted.

All Sadie Jones wants is a quiet Christmas to finish her business proposal and forget her jerk of an ex, Brian. When she hears Leon and his buddies in their back yard she goes over to tell them to shut up so she can work, but ends up getting attacked by a dog, and saved by Leon. When he asks her to the block party she accepts. When he kisses her she slaps him. When he decides to make it his personal mission to help her rekindle her inspiration for writing she begins to remember why she had a crush on him all growing up, and why she keeps saying yes when he asks her out.

When Sadie’s ex tries to take her proposal, and Leon sends his massive Twitter following after the guy, everything falls apart. Can they put their own issues aside and salvage their budding relationship, or will the Grinch get his way?

 

 

Excerpt:

“Get away!” She kicked out again, but Leon danced back.

The porch light of the nearby house went on, and the front door opened. “Who’s out there?”

Leon flinched.

“Sorry, Ms. Jackson,” Jack said. “This dog scared our friend.”

“Jack Simmons? Is that you?”

Leon saw Jack approach the front door as Jose held the dog. Light from the door spilled out and somehow landed on the woman.

She flinched and put a hand up so she could still see. One glimpse of her face was all it took for Leon to identify her.

“Sadie?” he asked.

She scooted back.

“Hey, it’s me—Leon.” He squatted down. “What are you doing out here?”

“Leon?” She glared from under her arm.

He held out a hand. “Yeah, it’s me. Let me help you up.”

“What are you doing here?”

Leon didn’t move. “I asked you first.”

She sighed and took his hand. Leon stood and pulled her up as easily as he might lift a backpack.

The last time Leon had seen Sadie, they’d been in high school. She was a year older, and a week after she graduated she’d gone off to college. Back then she’d been a gangly girl, but time had been kind. Her pale skin glittered like the snow in the moonlight. Her curly brown hair stuck out from under the red beanie she wore. The burgundy coat hugged her curves, and the snow boots only emphasized how thin her legs were.

“Ouch.” She pulled her hand away.

“What is it?” Leon asked.

“Landed on my wrist,” she said as she shook her arm.

Leon pulled his gloves off. “Let me see.”

She blinked. “It’s fine.”

“It might be broken.”

“It’s not broken,” Sadie said. She shoved her hand into her pocket.

“You sure?”

“I’m not dumb.”

“Is that any way to treat your rescuer?” Leon asked.

Sadie finally looked up and met his gaze. Even in the moonlight, he caught the green flecks in her blue eyes. “My rescuer?”

“Yeah, I’m practically a knight in shining armor.”

Sadie snorted.

“What?”

“Hey,” Jose said, “I’m going to take this dog back to the Bullocks.”

“My front door is open,” Leon said.

Jack had moved to talk to Ms. Jackson.

Leon took a step toward Sadie. “Are you really okay?”

“I’m fine.”

“What are you doing out here?”

“Walking.”

“This late?”

Sadie scoffed. “Fine. If you must know, I was coming to tell you guys to shut up. I’m trying to write, and you’re being obnoxiously loud.”

Leon raised his eyebrows. “You could hear us?”

“My house is right behind yours, in case you forgot, and I could hear you through the open window.”

“Why is your window open?”

“Never mind,” Sadie said. “I’ve delivered my message. I’m going to go now.”

“Wait.” Leon’s hand darted out to grab her elbow. “At least let me walk you home.”

She looked up at him. “Why?”

“Well, it’s my fault you’re out here, and you’ve already been accosted once. Allow me to be a gentleman and make sure you get back safely.”

A small smile creased Sadie’s lips. “I think I can handle it.”

“Your track record says otherwise.”

She put her good hand on her hip. “Leon Reyes, leave me alone.” The exasperated tone of her voice caused Leon to laugh.

“What?” she asked.

“You used to say that to me all the time when we were kids.”

Sadie leaned in and poked him in the chest. It barely got past his thick coat. “For good reason.”

Leon studied her eyes. Her face. Her lips as they tried not to quirk into a smile. “How long are you in town?”

Sadie blinked. “Until the 26th.” Then she scowled. “Why?”

“Just wondering how long I need to be quiet.”

She opened her mouth to speak, but then closed it, shook her head, and walked away.

Leon watched, aware he was staring.

“Was that Sadie Jones?” Jack asked.

“Yup.”

“What’s she doing out here so late?”

“She heard us in the backyard and wanted us to be quiet.”

“Why didn’t she just yell from her back door?”

Leon shook his head and headed back toward his house.

“Didn’t you have a mad crush on her when we were like ten?” Jack asked.

That drew a laugh from Leon. “I sure did.”

Jose joined them. “A crush on who?”

“Sadie,” Jack said.

“You had it bad for that girl.”

Leon led them to his house, but Jack grabbed him by the arm and stopped him just before they got to the door.

“What?” Leon asked. “You haven’t had enough?”

“Not that,” Jack said. “I think we should alter Will Kent’s bet.”

Leon narrowed his eyes.

A grin split Jose’s face.

“What?” Leon asked.

“Technically, Sadie is your first love. I dare you to take her on a date and kiss her before Christmas,” Jack said.

 

 

Praise for The About Face Groom

This is a refreshing and fun romance that will definitely have you enjoying each and every moment of this journey to true love.

A wonderfully beautiful and nostalgic romance that will bring a smile to your face cover to cover. I love the journey the characters take and how they figure out that they just might like each other. Loved this read.

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Comments

  1. Mara Harvey says

    Thank you!

  2. KATHLEEN NEWBERRY says

    I could always use an Amazon give card. Thank you so very much.

  3. Thanks for the chance in the giveaway ??