Tag: Rachel Gibson

Joint Review: Daisy’s Back in Town by Rachel Gibson

Posted July 29, 2019 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Joint Review: Daisy’s Back in Town by Rachel GibsonReviewer: Holly and Rowena
Daisy's Back in Town by Rachel Gibson
Series: Lovette Texas #1
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: January 1, 2004
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 312
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Rowena's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Rowena's 2019 TBR Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: four-stars

When Daisy Monroe walked out of Lovett, Texas fifteen years ago, she thought she'd left troublemaker Jackson Lamott Parrish behind her. But some things you can't just leave in the past. Now she's back and she needs to clear the air by confessing to Jackson the reason she left him all those years ago. But Jackson doesn't want to know. When she walked out on him, he vowed he'd never let a woman get close enough to hurt him again.

As Daisy tries to pursue Jackson to tell him the truth, he tries just as hard to stay out of her way. Except, maybe, sometimes, not quite hard enough. One things for sure, the sparks are still flying between them. Will they ever be able to forget their troubled past for long enough to enjoy the present?

Daisy’s Back in Town is an older release by Rachel Gibson that kicks off the Lovette, Texas series. It’s a second chance romance that follows childhood best friends, Jack Parrish and Daisy Lee Brooks, as they find their way together again after fifteen years. Daisy is back in town visiting her family, but she’s also on a mission to fulfill her late husband’s final wish. Daisy has to make things right with Jack Parrish, the best friend that she and her husband left behind after shattering his already shattered world. To her dismay, Jack doesn’t want any part of her reconciliation but old feelings creep on the both of them anyway.

Holly: I’m pretty sure we can’t do this review without spoilers, so..fair warning. Here there be spoilers.

Rowena: I finished this book in a day so that’s a testament to Rachel Gibson’s writing style. It was easy to fall into what was going on in the story and I easily connected with all of the characters in Lovette, but I also really struggled with a lot of what happens in this story as well.

What about you? How did the story hold up for you?

Holly: It’s been years since I read this book. I remember struggling a lot with Daisy’s actions, hating Steven until the bitter end, and loving Jack. I can’t say much has changed. I agree, Gibson’s writing is smooth and easy to read. I fell right into this book.

Rowena: I struggled a lot while reading this book, too. I struggled with Daisy’s actions. I struggled with Steven’s letter that he left for Jack and I struggled with the way that Jack found out about why they left him all those years ago and yet, despite all of that, I didn’t hate this book. I really loved Jack Parrish. I loved seeing him with his family, especially his nieces and then, later on, I really enjoyed seeing him with Nathan.

Holly: I really loved the way Jack and Nathan came to have a relationship. Their sex talks had me cracking up. I loved that Nathan was comfortable going to Jack with things.

Rowena: I guess what I struggled with concerning Daisy’s action was how long it took her to tell Jack the truth. Then when she tells Jack that she loves him but told him that he basically needed to get over her and Steven’s betrayal or he’ll be all alone forever. I wanted to slap that bitch into next year after that. Like, I still want to slap that bitch for that…and I’m happy that Jack finally got his girl.

Holly: I honestly understood why Daisy didn’t tell Jack about his son for all those years. I don’t agree with or condone it, but I got why she didn’t at first, and how it just got harder the longer she waited. What I didn’t understand was why she waited so long to tell him once she came back to town. She had plenty of opportunity and I felt like she squandered it. I agree she was wrong to tell Jack to get over it. I mean, I get what she was trying to say, but she had no right considering how long she kept his son from him. Still, I was able to forgive her. Probably because Jack did.

Rowena: I think I could have gotten over Daisy’s actions if I didn’t feel like Jack was rushed into accepting and getting over the betrayal. He had just found out about Nathan, from Nathan and not Daisy so he’s reeling from the fact that he’s got a fifteen-year-old son that he never knew about, and his two best friends decided that they knew what was best for everyone…for him. So while he’s reeling from that fact, he’s trying to build a relationship with the son he just met, only to have to sit there and be nice to his Mom, who betrayed him and listen to this son call the other person that betrayed him, his father at every turn.

I didn’t feel like Jack was given enough time to really get over everything. Daisy and Nathan knew the truth for years but Jack just found out the truth and immediately had to decide if he was going to be mad or let it go.

Holly: I agree he wasn’t given a lot of time to process or come to terms with everything. Even though I got over it in the end, because I just wanted them all to be happy, a part of me is still really upset on his behalf. How is he supposed to just get over missing out on 15 years of his son’s life? Of listening to his son call another man “dad”? A man who willfully and purposely took that title away from him? I’m conflicted.

I don’t hate Daisy, which is strange. I feel like I SHOULD hate her, but I’ve never been able to.

Rowena: I don’t think I hate Daisy either. I really hate what Daisy did and I don’t even know if I forgive her. But hate her? I don’t think I hate her.

Holly: Steven is the one I wasn’t able to forgive, though. Daisy was young and scared, and easily convinced that Jack didn’t really love her, I think. But Steven knew exactly what he was doing when he took her away..and kept her away. And his letter made me so angry.

Rowena: I do hate Steven. I don’t even care that he was a good Dad to Nathan.

Holly: The difference, I think, is that Steven’s actions were willful. I believe Daisy thought she was doing the right thing for them all by not telling Jack. Steven, on the other hand, knew full well what he was about. He knew he was fucking Jack over.

Rowena: Steven saw a way for him to get what he wanted and he took it. Full stop. He didn’t stop to think of what he was taking from Jack and that is why his betrayal is so much worse. Or if he did stop to think of it…he still went through with it and that makes me hate him so much.

Holly: Exactly this. So much this. He betrayed his best friend because it suited his purposes, and that makes him a total douche. I don’t care how much he loved Nathan or how good a dad he was to him, because that should have been Jack’s job. Jack’s choice. And Steven took that away.

Rowena: Still, even with that drama, this wasn’t a book that I could easily put down. I was invested in these characters and what they were going through. I enjoyed how easy it was to slip into this story, to feel for these characters. Rachel Gibson is good at pulling at your emotions and this book was proof of that. In the end, I was able to be happy for Jack, and for Nathan, and even Daisy. So all in all, I enjoyed this book. I think I’m going to give this one 3.5 out of 5. You?

Holly: Reading this book reminded me why I used to love Gibson so much and why she’s on my keeper shelf. Despite being angry and frustrated with Daisy and Steven for most of the book, I was easily drawn into their story and really pulled for Jack to have his HEA in the end. I’m going to give it 4 out of 5, I think. Because even though Daisy made me angry, I can’t deny I was wrapped up in it from page one.

Final Grades

Holly: 4 out of 5
Rowena: 3.5 out of 5

Lovette, Texas


Tagged: , , , , , , , , ,

Throwback Thursday Review: Rescue Me by Rachel Gibson.

Posted October 25, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 8 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Rescue Me by Rachel Gibson.Reviewer: Rowena
Rescue Me by Rachel Gibson
Series: Lovett Texas #3
Also in this series: Daisy's Back In Town, Crazy On You (Lovett Texas, #2)
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: May 29, 2012
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: four-stars

She’s 33, unmarried, and stuffed into a Bubble Yum pink bridesmaid dress. And the whole town wants to fix her up with anyone with a dental plan...

Who’s going to rescue Sadie Hollowell now? Everyone in Lovett, Texas knows Sadie has always been a ‘notional’ kind of gal. She got a notion to leave town ASAP and never visit her daddy (bless his heart). Now, she’s back and got the notion to invite a good-looking, hard-muscled, total stranger to her cousin’s wedding. Better a stranger than some of the losers she’s dated.

Vince Haven got his muscles the hard way -- as a Navy SEAL in Afghanistan. He’s staying in Lovett to visit his crazy aunt -- the proprietor of the local Gas N Go. Before he can get the heck back out of the small town, his aunt makes him an offer he can’t refuse. Maybe he’ll stick around Lovett for a while. Maybe he’ll make a ‘go’ of the Gas N Go. Maybe he’ll rescue Sadie out of that pink dress!

Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy!

This review was originally posted on May 30, 2012.

This book features a hero that if you read Any Man of Mine will remember. Autumn’s brother, Vince is the star of this show. If you’ll remember back to AMoM, Vince was Autumn’s brother that was a Navy SEAL who came back to help her take care of her young son, Connor. In this book, Vince goes to the Lone Star state to see what his Aunt wants and to get away for a little bit. He’s not a fan of Autumn’s fiance Sam and he’s not looking forward to the wedding. He’s in Texas, a long way from Seattle and before he knows what’s what, he’s bought his Aunts Gas and Go mart and he’s in the process of fixing it up.

On his way into town, he runs into a bit of car trouble and finds himself stranded, until a cute blonde comes to save the day. Her name is Sadie and her being back in town is sure to cause some talk.

Seeing Vince in action and getting into his head in this book was a treat for me since I became a fan of his in his sister’s book, Any Man of Mine. I was looking forward to getting to know him and I loved him, just like I knew I would. He was such a man’s man and I ate his character up. Him and Becca’s relationship had me cracking up. What he thought, what Becca thought, what they really thought of each other and then Sadie’s reaction to it all? Was the exact same reaction I had.

It was also good to see him to come to terms with Autumn’s relationship with Sam. It was nice to see that played out in this book as well because I felt like it was brought up in AMoM and then just dropped. I loved the little pieces of Autumn, Sam and Connor in this book.

Rachel Gibson does a great job of writing a humorous contemporary romance with just enough steam to keep you turning the pages and not need to take a shower. I’m a total fan of the way she writes her stories, the way that she fleshes out her characters and still keep us laughing the whole way through. She created a new world for us in this book and I can’t wait for more. I’m mighty curious to see who’s next to get their story from this town in Texas. I love stories set in Texas because the people from around there are so colorful and just too funny.

I’m glad that I read this book, I enjoyed the romance between Vince and Sadie, I enjoyed getting to know the people from Sadie’s past and I’m glad that she was able to make friends in a place where she didn’t have very many friends. I even enjoyed getting to know Sadie’s Dad. It was all wrapped up nicely in an entertaining story and I will definitely be back for more.

Grade: 4.5 out of 5.

Lovett, Texas


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Sunday Spotlight: The Art of Running in Heels by Rachel Gibson

Posted December 31, 2017 by Rowena in Features, Giveaways | 1 Comment

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

Rachel Gibson has been one of our go-to authors for great sports romances since we were babies and new to reading romances. The Chinooks Hockey team was the very first hockey team that I read and fell in love with so this week’s Sunday Spotlight takes us back to that world and we’re super thrilled about it.

The Art of Running in Heels by Rachel Gibson
Series: Chinooks Hockey Team #7
Also in this Series: Simply Irresistible, Simply Irresistible, See Jane Score, See Jane Score, True Love and Other Disasters, Nothing but Trouble, Nothing but Trouble, Any Man of Mine
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Release Date: December 26, 2017
Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon

Running in five-inch stilettos is an art form. Leaving your fiancé at the altar on live television is a disaster.

Lexie Kowalsky thought she was ready to get married in front of millions of people, but at the last minute she fled the set of television’s hottest reality show, Gettin’ Hitched. Wearing a poofy white dress and a pair of five-inch sparkly shoes, Lexie hopped a float plane for Sandspit, Canada. She figured no one would find her there. But she was wrong.

Sharing her flight was the Seattle Chinooks biggest star, Sean Knox. Lexie wasn’t just a reality-show runaway, she was his pain in the butt coach’s daughter. She was chaos and temptation and definitely off limits, but getting her luscious body out of that wedding gown, he couldn’t resist getting her in his bed for one amazing night

Then a photo of Sean and Lexi breaks the internet—and suddenly they’re both swept up in a crazy plan to spin the whole story. But you can’t run from love.

Order the Book:



He didn’t know which hurt worse, the pain in his brain or in his eyeballs. God, somehow last night’s little ha-ha joke had turned into a full-blown secret. “You can’t call anyone. Not Hoda or Wendy or Wanda.” His brain. His brain definitely hurt worse. “We can’t have that kind of attention on us right now.”

“Humph.” His mother crossed her arms, clearly disappointed that she couldn’t lord her news over Wanda’s head. “What does your coach think about all this? One of his very own hockey players stealing his daughter on national TV?”

How in the hell had this happened? “He doesn’t know yet.” He wasn’t a liar. “Lexie doesn’t know yet.”

“Lexie doesn’t know you stole her from Pete?” She looked at him like he was the crazy one in the room. “I’m confused.”

She wasn’t the only one. “Of course she knows that.” He didn’t like secrets as much as he didn’t like lies. Mostly because he sucked at keeping them all straight, but here he was, smack in the middle of both. “Kowalsky doesn’t know Lexie is with me, and Lexie doesn’t know I play hockey for the Chinooks.” It was always best to go with the truth, and those two things were the truth. “And you can’t talk about it.”

“Are you okay, son?” She put her hand on his knee. “Did you get hit in the head without your helmet?”

It felt like it. Like a butt hit to the forehead.

“You need some Xanax.”

Great. His mother was prescribing medication.

“Or maybe I need the Xanax. I’m confused.” She reached for a prescription bottle on the TV tray next to her. “How could she not know you play hockey for the Chinooks?”

“She’s been out of town, filming that stupid show since I was traded.” He shrugged. “Maybe because I played for Pittsburgh and she doesn’t pay attention to players from other teams. Maybe I look different without my helmet. I don’t know for sure, but she doesn’t even seem to recognize my name.” But even the truth had this whole thing spiraling into chaos. “Kowalsky doesn’t like me very much. His mother still looked doubtful, and he added, “Lexie isn’t real bright. She has a lot of good qualities, but her attic’s a little dusty.”

“God compensated special people.” His mother smiled like a sudden flush of romance made her all warm inside. “You must really love her.”

Sean avoided chaos. He hated shit storms. He was responsible for both. He didn’t know quite how it had happened or how to stop it.

“You kidnapped her from Pete and right from under her dad’s nose, too.”

Kidnap? Love her? From under her dad’s nose? Geraldine sighed. “She must be your soul mate.”

Good Lord! Soul mate? He tried to speak but couldn’t find the words. He didn’t know her. He wasn’t even sure he liked her. “Yeah. That’s it,” he lied.

“Then I won’t call Wendy or say a word to Wanda.” She lifted a pretend key and locked her lips. “For now,” she said out of one corner of her mouth. “Even though I’m about to bust.”

He wasn’t sure she wouldn’t bust the moment he turned his back. Not when a chance at the Wendy show and national attention dangled in front of her like a tantalizing illness. “Lexie probably needs help,” he managed as he stood. He fought the urge to run. To get the hell out of his mother’s crazy house. “Yell if you need anything,” he said over his shoulder as he walked from the room. Only he couldn’t run from the crazy he’d brought to the house with him.

Lexie stood at the kitchen sink, and if she hadn’t looked up and smiled, he might have hopped the ferry to Prince Rupert. From there, he’d catch a flight to Seattle or Pittsburgh. The team was on the road and he’d much rather get a shot to the cup than be anywhere near Sandspit.

The bright sun bounced off the snow outside, cut a blinding trail through the window, and caught in Lexie’s hair. The fish hat lay on the counter, and she turned her attention to meat she placed in a hot pan on the stove. “I’m making Asian pork tenderloin I found in the refrigerator. It’ll taste so good, Geraldine won’t even know she’s eating healthy,” she said as she put a lid on the pan. “I’ll make simple hoisin and a yummy cucumber salad.”

Sean glanced over his shoulder at his mother and the sharp rise in her brow. Despite the invisible lock and key, she needed convincing. He took a cheese grater from Lexie’s hand and tossed it on the counter.

“Why did you do that?” She turned toward him and lifted her gaze to his, confusion pulling at her brows.

“This is crazy.”

“I know! I need that to shred the cucumber.” He slid his hand around her waist to the small of her back. “If you don’t want my mother to call The Wendy Williams Show for a chance at her dream vacation, make this look good.”


“This.” He pulled her against his chest and slowly lowered his face to hers. “Kiss me like you mean it, Lexie,” he whispered against her mouth.

She sucked in a small breath. “Wendy, too?”

“Wendy, too.”

He brushed a soft kiss against her lips, teasing a reaction out of her. Her eyes rounded but she didn’t push away. Her soft breasts rested against his chest, teasing a reaction in his body. He kissed her to save her from Wendy and himself from the chaos his mother always created. That was the only reason, he told himself. Her lush mouth parted, and the ache in the pit of his stomach slid between his legs. He struggled to keep the kiss easy even as he craved more. Even as desire smacked his chest and hit the pit of his stomach like a hot ball of lead. He was in control. In control of the chaotic pull making him hard, belying the soft touch of his mouth to hers. Then her hands slipped up his chest, across his shoulder, to the back of his neck. She combed her fingers through his hair, and a shudder worked through him, running down his spine from the back of his skull to his butt. He was tempted. So damn tempted to slide his tongue into her mouth and his hands to her behind, pull her against his hard dick.

All aboard! Lexie’s breast vibrated against his chest. I, I, I, I . . .

Sean dropped his hands and took a deep, cleansing breath. Saved at the last second by Ozzy Osbourne.

Well, hello there, Mr. Knox…

Chinooks Hockey Team Series

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

Rachel Gibson


Rachel was born in Boise, Idaho, USA. Her father worked for a telephone company, and her mother was a housewife. Idaho has the largest population of Basques outside of the Basque lands of Spain. She grew up with kids with last names like Uberuaga, Berriochoa, and Egisquiza, but years later she discovered the rest of the country didn’t really know much about the Basque culture or history.

Rachel’s storytelling career began at the age of sixteen when she ran her Chevy Vega into the side of a hill, retrieved the bumper and broken glass from the ground, and drove to her High School parking lot. With the help of her friend, she strategically scattered the broken pieces and told her parents she’d been the victim of a hit and run. They believed her, and she’s been telling stories ever since.

Four of her novels were named among the Top Ten Favorite Books of The Year by Romance Writers of America. Two of her novels, True Confessions and Not Another Bad Date, were awarded the RITA, Romance Writers of America’s highest honor of excellence. Some of Rachel’s other awards and achievements include The Golden Heart Award, the National Reader’s Choice, Amazon Editor’s Top Pick, Publisher Weekly’s Quill nominee, Borders bestselling romantic comedy and Romantic Time’s Career Achievement award.

When not writing, Rachel can be found shopping for shoes or looking for strange and unusual flowers to plant in her garden.

Tagged: , , , , ,

Retro Review: True Love and Other Disasters by Rachel Gibson.

Posted July 26, 2017 by Rowena in Reviews | 21 Comments

Retro Review: True Love and Other Disasters by Rachel Gibson.Reviewer: Rowena
True Love and Other Disasters (Chinooks Hockey Team #4) by Rachel Gibson
Series: Chinooks Hockey Team #4
Also in this series: See Jane Score
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: April 28th 2009
Pages: 345
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: five-stars

Disaster Number One: MEN

Hard knocks and hunger taught Faith Duffy not to believe in love. Still, when she married her very wealthy—and very old—husband, she became the perfect wife. And then he went to that big bank in the sky, leaving Faith with lonely nights, a pile of money, and a total mess of a pro hockey team. Heck, Faith doesn't even watch hockey!

Disaster Number Two: PASSION

But most of America and half of Canada is watching Ty Savage. His lethal sex appeal and deadly right hook make him the favorite of fans. For most of Ty's life, he's dreamed of winning the Stanley Cup. The last thing he needs is a bimbo messing up his plans.

Disaster Number Three: LOVE

Faith loathes Ty on sight, but she can't stop thinking about him all day ... and night. Then a moment of temptation ends with Faith in Ty's bed, and she begins to see there's more to him than sex appeal. Ty discovers there's far more to Faith than beauty and billions. But a relationship with Faith is impossible, and falling in love—that would be a disaster.

*****As part of our 10 year anniversary celebration, we’ll be re-posting old reviews that make us cringe, laugh or sigh all over again.

Holly: Oh man, did we all love Rachel Gibson back in the day. I have several of her more recent releases in my TBR pile, but for some reason I haven’t read them. I think I’m afraid the magic of these earlier works will be missing.

This review was originally published April 29, 2009

One of the main reasons I read Rachel Gibson is she writes engaging stories with characters that fall right off the pages and keeps me entertained from the first page all the way to the last page. I don’t have to plow my way through that first part of the book that can sometimes bore the ever living snot out of me. Her books take off right from the beginning and keeps me plugged in.

This book was no exception. I was on board with this story right from the first chapter. In the first chapter, we meet the hero and the heroine at the heroine’s husband’s funeral or wake. Right off the bat, this book reminded me of Susan Elizabeth Phillip’s It Had To Be You and I was eagerly waiting to see how Rachel Gibson would tell her version of that storyline.

For me, she knocked it out of the park.

There is no doubt that Rachel Gibson is a gifted writer. She writes these quirky little romances that makes you smile and entertains the socks right off of you and she did just that in this book. This story is about Faith Duffy inheriting her late husband’s hockey team, the Seattle Chinooks. You’ll remember The Chinooks from See Jane Score, as that was the team that Luc Martineau and his sexy “I want to lick his tatoo” self played for. In this book, Lucky is retired and there’s a new hunky captain on the prowl.

His name is Ty Savage.

Man, I could feast for days off of that man. I really like hockey men and I really love Rachel Gibson’s hockey men. I didn’t think I could love an RG hockey man as much as I loved Luc Martineau but I do now.

I love Ty, just wanted to tell you that..in case you missed it. =P It’s funny how I don’t watch hockey in real life but after reading this book, it’s made me curious enough to check a hockey game out.

Faith was a great heroine. She was one of those heroines that is easy to relate to even if you don’t have anything in common with her. Faith was such a likeable character that I found it very easy to sympathize with her. She was so likeable that I wasn’t mad one bit at her after two weeks passes after her husband death and she starts wanting to sleep with another man. I had very big issues with this in Robyn Carr’s book, Second Chance Pass but because Faith’s relationship with her husband was so different from Vanessa’s relationship with Matt, it didn’t bother me one bit when Faith started sleeping with Ty.

I thought they were perfect together and I loved watching these two fall in love with each other. I loved seeing Ty’s insecurities and I loved watching him bulldoze his way into Faith’s heart. It was a delight to read about and I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking to enjoy another RG hockey book, for me, this is definitely a keeper.

4.5 out of 5

This book is available from Avon. You can buy it here or here in e-format.


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Sunday Spotlight: Just Kiss Me by Rachel Gibson

Posted July 31, 2016 by Rowena in Features, Giveaways | 0 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we’re running in 2016. Each week, we will spotlight a release we’re excited about. We’ll be posting exclusive excerpts and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

Rachel Gibson has a new book out and it’s been a long time since I’ve been excited about a Rachel Gibson book so of course this was on my to be bought list.

Just Kiss Me by rachel gibson
Just Kiss Me by Rachel Gibson
Releases on July 28, 2016 by Avon

Order the Book:


New York Times bestselling author Rachel Gibson returns with this dazzling love story filled with sizzle, sass, and just a bit of southern charm…

“Hello, Ms. Vivian . . . it’s been a long time.”

And with those words, Vivian Leigh Rochet nearly melted. It’s been years since she last saw Henry Whitley-Shuler. She was a teenager scrubbing houses for a living. He was the gorgeous son of rich parents, not fit for the likes of her.

Vivian had vowed to get out of Charleston, become a big Hollywood star, and stick it to the snooty girls who made her cry.

She got what she wanted—and more—but why does her glamorous life seem so trivial?

Henry got out too . . . making it all the way to Wall Street, until a heart attack forced him to trade in his cufflinks for a good set of hand tools.

Making furniture soothes his soul, but escaping the Whitley-Shuler heritage is nearly impossible. And now he’s come face-to-face with the one who got away. He’s not looking for love. He’s not even looking for sex . . . so why is resisting her the hardest thing he’s ever done?

Henry and Vivien have known each other for a long ass time and they never got along so when Vivien comes back to town to bury her Mom, she runs into Henry Whitley-Shuler again after years and years things are a lot more interesting than they were back then.


From JUST KISS ME by Rachel Gibson. Copyright © 2016 by Rachel Gibson. Reprinted by permission of Avon Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Vivien had been vaguely aware of Spence’s recent wedding, and she wasn’t a bit surprised he’d bagged a Coleman. It would have been more shocking if he hadn’t married into a family with an old name and political ties. She didn’t recall Henry having beautiful manners at all. In fact, she was fairly certain she recalled his appalling manners and she really didn’t care if she ever laid eyes on him again. Not after the horrible condom incident, when she thought Henry might choke her to death.

The horrible incident had taken place when she’d been thirteen, but she still recalled the fire in his black eyes as if it had happened yesterday. That summer, Henry had just graduated from his fancy prep school, and he and Spence had spent the summer like always, lazing the days away at Hilton Head. As usual, Vivien spent her summer in Charleston, working in the big house, dusting tables and shelves and massive bedroom furniture.

And, of course, snooping.

The day of the condom incident, she’d popped her latest *NSYNC CD into her Discman, stuffed in her earbuds, and rocked out as she cleaned. She sang along to “Tearin’ Up My Heart,” practiced her dance moves, and brushed the top of Henry’s empire dresser with her feather duster. She’d glanced behind her for good measure, then she slid open the first drawer. Behind a row of socks, she just happened to discover a box of Trojans. The words of her favorite song died on her lips as she took a closer look and read, “Extended pleasure, climax control lubricant.” Whatever that meant, she hadn’t clue. Vivien had pathetically little experience with boys. At least she thought it was pathetic. While *NSYNC sang about the pain tearing up their hearts and souls, Vivien counted six condoms in the box that originally had held a dozen.


“What the hell are you doing?” she heard above her music.

A squeaky scream escaped her lips as she spun around. The box of Trojans fell from her hand and her heart pounded boom-boom-boom in her chest. Butt Head Henry stood several feet away, his dark brows lowered over his scary, dark eyes.

She pulled out the earbuds with her free hand and turned off her Discman. “What are you doing home?” He was supposed to be in Hilton Head.

“I live here.” He looked bigger than usual. Taller. His shoulders wider, and he was better-looking than before too. Like her mamaw Roz always said, “He’s as handsome as a wet paint.” Vivien didn’t know what that meant, but if she liked him at all, even a little, she might think of changing his name from Butt Head to Handsome Henry. Only she didn’t like him and he was mad. Real mad. So mad he looked scary. So scary his squinty eyes shined like wet onyx. His cheeks turned a deep red with it, but no matter his anger, Henry was a Southern boy. He’d been raised with manners and morals that would never allow him to hit a girl. Just because he wouldn’t hit her, didn’t mean he wasn’t scary as all get-out.

“What are you doing in my room, Vivien?”

She held up the feather duster. “Cleaning.”

“My underwear?” He developed a worrying little tic at one corner of his mouth.

No, she didn’t fear him physically, but that didn’t mean she wasn’t in trouble. If he ratted her out, she was in deep, deep do-do with her momma. “Your sock drawer, actually,” she corrected him.

He pointed to the box at her feet. “Those were in the back of my sock drawer.”

In the middle, but she thought it best not to quibble. Instead, she looked behind his back to the empty doorway and wondered if she could get around him and make a run for it.

“Does your momma know you snoop?”

The best defense was always a good offence. “Does your momma know you have condoms in your sock drawer?” She slid a bit to her right and figured her best hope for an exit was to distract him until she could get between him and the door. “What does climax control mean?”

The little tic got a little scarier. “Ask Macy Jane when you tell her what you do up here when no one is watching you.”

“I’m not going to tell my momma.”

“Oh, I think you are.” He took a step forward and towered over Vivien.

She shook her head, more scared then she thought possible or wanted to let him know. No way could she tell her momma. She’d get mad then sad and might stay in bed for a week. She might even “take a switch” to Vivien like she always threatened. This time she might actually get around to it. “If you don’t tell on me, I won’t tell on you.”

“No one cares about condoms at my age.” As if to prove he was eighteen, he lifted a hand to scratch the dark stubble on his jaw.

That was probably true. Vivien crossed her arms over her chest and brought out the big guns. “Your momma will care when I tell her about Tracy Lynn Fortner.”

His hand fell to his side and his voice got real low. “What did you say?”

“You heard me.”

He stared at her without blinking. “How do you know about that?”

Years of snooping, of course.

“No one knows about that.”

“Not yet.”

Fifteen years had passed since the horrible condom incident and Vivien saw little of Henry after that day. She’d steered real clear of him. Not that it had been necessary. Once Henry went off to college, he hadn’t returned very often to Charleston.

Vivien pushed open the French doors to the townhouse and kicked off her shoes. Strong winds blew the tops of the trees and scattered leaves about the old brick. She hadn’t ever breathed a word about Tracy Lynn Fortner. Not because she feared Henry’s wrath, but even at thirteen, she knew that Tracy Lynn would suffer much more than Henry. Vivien might have been a little bratty, and a lot nosey, but she’d never been intentionally mean and hurtful.

Barefoot, she stepped outside and into the courtyard. Patches of sand and dead azaleas covered the brick, and she walked past a concrete angel partially covered in ivy. She moved to the bed of impatiens and knelt down beside the brick border. Her mother had loved impatiens, and Vivien picked one of the little red flowers.

The clouds above her head boomed and she felt the vibration in the air and beneath her knees. She brought the little flower to her nose as the skies opened and showered her with big fat drops.

Tears filled her eyes as she picked flowers and made a delicate posy like her momma had taught her. She set it by her knee then bent forward and parted plants. She searched the ground beneath the thick leaves. With each drop of rain, each tear that rolled down her cheek, her search got more frantic. The champagne cork from her mother’s party had been so insignificant. She’d ignored it at the time and forgotten it until now. Now it took on an importance beyond a mere stopper. It was a tangible trace, a link of that special day with her mother. The rain soaked her hair and dress. Her hands got muddy and sand dug into her knees. She didn’t care. She leaned farther into the bed of wet flowers, her deep sobs rushing from her lips and pulling at her chest. As if she was just inches away from discovering a lost horde of gold, her search got more frantic.

“What are you doing out here?” a man’s voice boomed over the thunder.

A startled gasp escaped her dry mouth and her heart stopped.

“Besides digging in the mud.”

She looked over her shoulder, and through the rain and tears blurring her vision, she stared at a pair of dark jeans and work boots. A single raindrop fell from her lashes as her gaze moved up his long legs, over the bulge of his button fly to the gray Henley splattered with rain. She looked up past his tan jaw and lips and into his dark eyes.

“Hello, Ms. Vivien,” Henry Whitley-Shuler drawled, pulling the vowels like warm taffy. “It’s been a long time.”

This was a good one, I can’t wait for you guys to read it for yourselves. 🙂

Giveaway: We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

Rachel Gibson


Rachel was born in Boise, Idaho, USA. Her father worked for a telephone company, and her mother was a house wife. Idaho has the largest population of Basques outside of the Basque lands of Spain. She grew up with kids with last names like Uberuaga, Berriochoa, and Egisquiza, but years later she discovered the rest of the country didn’t really know much about the Basque culture or history.

Rachel’s storytelling career began at the age of sixteen when she ran her Chevy Vega into the side of a hill, retrieved the bumper and broken glass from the ground, and drove to her High School parking lot. With the help of her friend, she strategically scattered the broken pieces and told her parents she’d been the victim of a hit and run. They believed her, and she’s been telling stories ever since. Afther the High School, she married with Mr. Gibson. At 25, she already had three children. One day, her TV broke, and she read her first romance, The Spanish Rose by Shirlee Busbee, she loved it, and six years later she published her first novel. With the publication in 1998 of New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Rachel Gibson’s first book, Simply Irresistible, readers discovered one of contemporary romance’s freshest voices. Her debut novel was named one of the ten favorite books by the membership of the Romance Writers of America, and other of her three novels were named among the Top Ten Favorite Books of the Year by Romance Writers of America. Her fourth novel, True Confessions, was awarded the RITA, Romance Writers of America’s highest honor of excellence. Some of Rachel’s other awards and achievements include The Golden Heart Award, the National Reader’s Choice, Amazon Editor’s Top Pick, Publisher Weekly’s Quill nominee and Borders bestselling romantic comedy for 2006. Rachel continues living in her native Boise, and when not writing, Rachel can be found boating on Payette Lake with Mr. Gibson, shopping for shoes, or forcing her love on an ungrateful cat.

Tagged: , ,