Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day: A Special Excerpt

To celebrate the most romantic day of the year, I am posting an excerpt from my upcoming novel, Ideal Hero, arriving on e-readers summer 2014.  Happy reading!
***

The doorbell rang, and Jennifer’s stomach did somersaults.  He was here.  Alex Slade was really going to take her out.  A silly grin curving on her face, she walked to the door, her ivory heels making a click-clack sound like Amy’s always made.  She held her breath as she opened the door, beholding a sight she’d been waiting years to see.
Slade looked incredible, from his casual charcoal jacket and pristine white shirt down to this black pants and shoes.  All of it fit him immaculately, making it nearly impossible to restrain herself from running her hands over him.  God, what was she thinking?  She barely knew this guy, and she was already undressing him with her eyes.  Her cheeks felt hot, and she hoped the blushing wouldn’t spread down to her neck and chest like it tended to.  She didn’t want to make a complete fool of herself in front of this crazy sexy guy.
His gaze met hers and he smiled.  God, that only made it worse.  She fisted her hands so he wouldn’t notice she was shaking.  “Hi.”
“Hello,” he replied as he skimmed her body with his eyes, making pit stops on her breasts and the bit of leg revealed below the hem of her dress.  “You look, um, wow.  Beautiful.”
Jennifer grinned brightly, knowing she must look like a total idiot glowing from his compliments.  “Thanks.  You look pretty amazing yourself.”
Slade glanced down, seeming almost embarrassed by her compliment.  “I’m not so sure about that.”
God, the guy really didn’t have any idea how he looked, did he?  It always amazed Jennifer to see men who were unaware of the sexuality radiating from them when they must have women constantly falling at their feet.
She didn’t want to act like a rock star’s groupie and keep telling him how hot he looked, so she kept her reassurance simple.  “Let’s just say the best looks are the effortless ones, and yours seems pretty effortless.  Mine isn’t.  It took me all day to look like this.”
“And the result was well-worth it.”
Jennifer smiled.  “Thanks.  Do you want to come in for a second?  I have to grab my purse.”
Slade nodded.  “Yeah, sure.”
Jennifer held the door open for Slade as he walked into her apartment.  She studied his facial expressions closely, praying that the impressions he developed weren’t negative.  Blowing a chance to date the hunkiest guy she’d ever known wasn’t an option.  She wanted to impress him, please him, love him.
Jennifer motioned to the bar stools near the breakfast bar.  “Make yourself at home.”
Slade’s grin was relaxed.  “That won’t be hard to do.  It’s really nice here”
“Thanks,” Jennifer replied, heat rushing to her face at his compliment.  “I’ve worked hard to make it feel like home.”
“You’ve done a good job from what I’ve seen.  I hate when a house looks staged.  Who wants to live in a place like that?”
Jennifer shook her head and shrugged.  At least he agreed with her on that.  “I don’t know but they do.”
Slade slid onto one of the bar stools, stretching out his long legs.  “Go ahead and do your thing.  Don’t worry about me.  I’m comfortable.”
Jennifer nodded giddily.  “Okay.  I’ll be right back.”
“I’ll be waiting.”
Dragging herself away, Jennifer nearly squealed in excitement.  Slade actually seemed like he wanted to be here.  As she did one last touch-up on her lipstick, she glanced at the mirror in disbelief.  Never had she thought someone like him would want to go out with her, yet he seemed almost as excited to go out as she was.  She just hoped dinner would go well so that she might have a chance at a second date.
Slipping her brown suede purse over her shoulder, Jennifer took a deep breath and strode back into the kitchen area, announcing, “I’m ready.”
“Okay,” Slade replied as he rose to his feet, standing an imposing six-foot-three.  “I’ll drive.  I have a feeling you’ll like my ride.”

Sunday, February 9, 2014

My Latest Blog Post

I just had some thoughts on the heroes in romance novels, so I decided to post them to my Tumblr.  By the way, if you are on Tumblr, be sure to follow me while you are there reading my post.  Hope you enjoy it.
http://maryfrancesgualandri.tumblr.com/post/76119477107/imperfect-heroes-why-the-men-in-romance-novels-should