Thank you so much, Jen, for having me on your blog today! I am beyond excited for the release of my new book, Feels Like Forever. It’s a romance involving two 18-year-old high school seniors who are trying to balance a new relationship with the friendships that define them.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I thought this would be a great opportunity to introduce the heroine, Evelyn, and her friends as they celebrate the holiday together a little more than a year before the book begins. Ev hasn’t met her hero yet, but she and her friends have been like sisters for years. There’s no better way to celebrate the holiday than with the family of your heart.
Two minutes out. Merrin’s text flashed across my phone.
I bussed around the table, putting the finishing touches on the dining room display. It was set up for our Thanksgiving feast with an array of food. Whipped sweet potatoes with candied pecans. Slow cooked green beans. Black eyed peas with hunks of bacon. Spinach Madeline, fresh from the oven, the hot white cheese still bubbling up through the buttery bread crumbs. And at the center of it all, a perfect golden brown turkey, with cornbread stuffing trailing from the bottom.
Thanksgiving was usually a holiday reserved for family, but this year, my mom extended an invitation to my best friends and their parents to join us. Chloe’s family couldn’t make it, but Shelly and Merrin said they’d be here with bells on.
I tucked a thick strand of brown hair behind my ear as I gave the table one last once over. It was perfect.
“I’m here, girl. You can start the party now.” I turned to see Shelly holding a pecan pie. She sat it with the rest of the food.
“You cut your hair!” Her once shoulder length blond locks were now in an ultra-short pixie cut. Her cheekbones looked sharp and sculpted.
“It looks amazing!” Merrin walked in behind her. “I could never get away with a cut that short.”
“Why would you want to? If I had gorgeous red hair like that, I’d never cut it.”
Merrin flashed a dazzling smile and reached out to tousle Shelly’s bangs. “I love it.” Her stomach grumbled and she flushed. “I’m starving.”
Shelly’s grin turned sly. “Well, I’m thirsty. I say we get a head-start on the party.” She pulled a small silver flask out of her jacket pocket and unscrewed the top. She took a swig, then grimaced and shook her head. She silently held out the flask to me.
I took an experimental sniff. Bourbon. It burned going down. I guess it showed on my face because Merrin just laughed. “I’ll pass.”
“Coward,” I rasped.
“At least I can still feel my tongue. Besides, I want all my faculties for my date with Bryce tonight.”
“Some of my best dates have involved a loss of faculties.” Shelly winked. Merrin was the only one of us with a steady boyfriend, but Shelly tackled serial dating with the kind of gusto I used to reserve for Salt and Vinegar potato chips. “In fact, my faculties were slightly impaired last night.”
She waggled her eyebrows and snatched the flask back. “Samuel Collins took me for a ride in his new Camaro.”
“Anyone ready to eat?” Mom’s voice tinkled as she came into the dining room, the other parents on her heels. Shelly shoved the flask back into her jacket.
We all took a seat, grouped with our families. I looked around the full table. Shelly laughing. Merrin scooping peas on her plate. My parents flirting with each other. I smiled as my chest expanded. This is my family. I couldn’t be more thankful.
I hope you enjoyed meeting Evelyn, Shelly, and Merrin. You can read the rest of their story –and Ev’s steamy relationship with Luke Rogers in Feels Like Forever. It’s on sale at Amazon and free on Kindle Unlimited.
Just ask 18 year-old Evelyn Sanders. With her friends at her back, she’s poised for all of her dreams to come true. She’s not looking for a guy to make her complete. Especially not a football player sexy enough to start a fan club and a dimple that stops girls in their tracks.
Luke Rogers just wants to have a good time. His loyalties lie with his brothers on the team. But he can’t resist the girl that sees beyond his practiced smile and victories on the field.
The heat between them is like nothing they’ve ever felt. But devastating circumstances can break even the strongest bond. Will the heartache and manipulation that change their lives bring them closer together or tear them apart?