To Win Her Trust by Mackenzie Crowne

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

I love stories full of heart, humor, and fun characters I can see myself sitting down with to share a martini. With my “Players Series” gang, I’d end up smashed, but the laughs and heartfelt emotion of their individual quests toward HEA would be well worth the hangover. 

Here’s a peek at CC and Tuck from book 2. As you can imagine, they kept me highly entertained.
“This isn’t going to work. You’re a beautiful woman, but…”  “But what?”  “I don’t…despoil virgins.” She had the audacity to laugh, and her sunny humor was so completely seductive he couldn’t help his smile—until her cool fingers patted his cheek.

“There. That wasn’t so hard. Was it?”

The hand he scraped over his jaw shook, and he quickly dropped his arm to his side. “You’re not thinking clearly. You teased me about being a gigolo the other day, and you weren’t far from the truth. I’ve been with a lot of women. Enough to know a woman like you needs a different kind of man.”

She crossed her arms, but the shadow of a smile remained in her eyes. “Is that why you tracked me down and showed up at my door?” Her brow puckered. “How did you track me down?”

Oh, no. They weren’t going there. “My point is, you need a man who’s in it for the long haul. That’s not me.”

“I guess you didn’t hear my first stipulation. I’m not interested in long term.”

Tuck scoffed. “You say that now.”

“Yes, I do say that now because it’s the truth.” The sneer curling her lips surprised him. “Long term is for suckers. Consider yourself a means to an end, if that helps. I know exactly who and what you are, Kevin Tucker. My father and you could compare notes, so you’ll have to believe me when I say you’re exactly what I need. You’re charming.” She ran her gaze down his body and up again. “Okay on the eyes, and you don’t know the meaning of permanent.”

Put that way, he sounded like the gigolo she’d called him. He’d never been anyone’s means to an end before and wasn’t sure he liked it. And yet, she still wanted him for her wacky experiment? She watched him in silence, but he didn’t have a clue what to say. She sighed, dropping her arms to prop her hands on her hips.

“You’re getting all worked up over nothing. I’m relieved to hear you don’t despoil virgins.” Her teeth flashed in a cheeky grin. “That sounds like a line from Gone With the Wind, by the way, but if you’d let me finish, you’d know I don’t plan to sleep with you.”

He forgot all about his intention to walk away. “Maybe you should tell me exactly what it is you’re proposing, because I’m not following you. What do you mean you don’t plan to sleep with me?”

“No offense, but if I ever do decide to sleep with a man, I won’t choose the type of man who disappears before the sheets have even cooled.”

As insults went, her barb hit its mark. So he’d slept with a lot of women. Big deal. The type of woman he spent time with understood the arrangement was temporary going in. Unfortunately, being a virgin—he fought a shudder—Little Miss Sunshine wasn’t his typical type. She wouldn’t understand the finer points of dating in the new millennium. “Is that so?”

She sighed. “I’m being honest. If Ronald had been agreeable, I’d be having this same conversation with him. I realize most men expect some physical contact with the women they date. I expect kissing and maybe some petting, but the relationship I’m after will be platonic.”

He cocked a brow. “Sorry, sunshine, but the kissing and petting you mentioned disqualifies what you’re describing as a truly platonic relationship.”

“Fine, semi-platonic. My point is, I don’t need to sleep with you, or any man, to test my theory.”

He shook his head. She didn’t have a clue when it came to what men expected in even the briefest of relationships.

She shrugged. “If you can’t or won’t help me, it’s no skin off my nose. There are millions of men in the city. Even if half of them are gay, I shouldn’t have trouble finding someone else.”

Why her casual dismissal should anger him, when he’d already dismissed the idea himself, he refused to consider. He had no business involving himself with a woman who didn’t understand how the game was played. Nothing but trouble in that, but when she spun toward the door, he snagged her arm before she took two steps and dragged her to a stop.

“Hold on a second.” He frowned. What the hell was he doing? He should get while the getting was good, but damn it, she didn’t understand the kind of trouble she was courting, laying out her proposition to the wrong kind of man. “I didn’t say I wasn’t going to help you.”

She arched a brow. “That’s how it sounded to me.”

“Let me get this straight. You expect some kissing?”

She nodded. “Necessary to test the theory.”

“And petting?”

One shoulder rose in a dismissive shrug. “I’m curious. Sue me.”

“No need for that. Curious is good. What if I insist on a practical demonstration, just to be sure I know what I’m getting into, before I agree?”

Challenge sparkled in her eyes as she repeated his tease from earlier. “Can you give me a minute to think about it?”

Though his mind screamed mistake, his libido was currently running the show. Permission to kiss the shit out of her with immunity? He couldn’t wait to get started. The laughter in her eyes said she expected a smile, but he couldn’t quite manage one at the moment. “I can make you swallow those words.”

She hummed deep in her throat and damned if she didn’t tug on a tiger’s tail. “Prove it.”

To Win Her Trust by Mackenzie Crowne

Can she trust this player with her heart?

Ever since experiencing a childhood trauma, reclusive artist CC Calhoun has suffered from panic attacks. But when a fateful kiss from handsome wide receiver, Kevin “Tuck” Tucker, is enough to stop one of those episodes cold, she wonders if guarding her heart has been the right choice. Will going on a test date with Tuck open her to trusting someone for the first time in years? Or will she wind up being just another notch in the football player’s bedpost?

Tuck has a reputation for charming women into bed, but after his kiss with CC, he’s left aching for more. When he proposes a second date, his attraction to the sexy blonde looks like the makings of true love—something he’s never quite believed in—until now. But when Tuck discovers CC’s childhood secrets, will the pro athlete be tough enough to stay by her side—or will he betray her hard-earned trust?

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