Today is a book excerpt from The Billionaire’s
Matchmaker Anthology and an introduction to the authors: Shirley Jump, Susan Meier, Jackie Braun, and Barbara
The authors will
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to a cross-country road trip, her master plan to re-launch her art career
quickly morphs into an unexpected, romantic reunion.
form of a rugged, blue-eyed cop. Now she has the perfect bodyguard to keep her
safe during those dark, steamy nights…
the headstrong florist can’t keep her hands off her sexy-as-sin
ex-boyfriend. Will she open her heart
before he leaves town for good?
resort to dognapping to make her point! But can she teach a reclusive,
emotionally-wounded tycoon that love heals all things?
Mr. Wrong Home” by Shirley Jump in The
what friends are for.” Though he wanted more than that and had for a long, long
time. He wasn’t on this trip with Gabby to see if he should forget her. He’d
come to see if she loved him like he’d always loved her.
that what we are?” she asked. “Friends?”
two-word question hung in the air. Hell, the question had sat between them for
years, ever since the day they’d met. There’d always been this magnet that drew
him to her, a magnet he’d attributed to her being so different from him, so
wild, so unpredictable. When really, what he wanted more than anything was
think we’ve always been more than that,” he said. He reached up, let his hand
trail along her jaw. Her eyes widened, and her pulse leapt in her throat.
She turned away. “I don’t think we should take this any further. I just don’t
think it’s a good idea.”
He lowered his hand.
heartbeat passed, another. The temperature rose, heating the space between
them. She caught his hand with hers, her fingers warm and tight against his. “I
want you,” she said softly. “But I’m so afraid. Of a thousand things, of making
Gabby.” Her name slid from his lips, part groan, part whisper. “Don’t be
afraid. I’m here and I’m not going anywhere.”
long slow smile curved across her face. She splayed her fingers, pressed her
hand on his chest. Her touch trailed down the front of his shirt, skipping over
the buttons, dancing along the ridges of muscle beneath the cotton fabric.
both have. We’ve grown up.” His attention drifted to her curves and the desire
that had been on a slow simmer began to burn hotter, brighter.
laughed, a deep, throaty sound. “I don’t know if I have. But you have grown up.
In very nice ways.” A flush of pink invaded her cheeks, nearly as bright as the
streak in her hair.
not that geek you remember.”
T.J., you definitely aren’t. But underneath it all, I think you’re still the
same guy. You’re down to earth and honest. At your core, you’re the T.J. I remember.
I’ve missed that person a lot.”
than I realized. You’ve always…tempered me. Brought out the best in me.”
words filled him with joy. She saw who he was underneath. She always had. “And
you’re still the same person who pushes me to step out of my comfort zone, to
could say you’ve turned the tables in that department this week.” Her gaze
softened when she looked at him.
we should take this beyond just a road trip. To something more.” He’d said
nearly the same thing years before. Back then, she’d rejected him. But this
time, he sensed the undercurrent of attraction, the simmer of want, warring
with whatever battles Gabby had inside her.
She got to her feet, and shook her head. “We’re just traveling together for a
few days. It wouldn’t be smart to complicate that. What’s going to happen when
we get to California? You stay there, I go back to Illinois? We have something
I don’t know what will happen then.” He wanted more, wanted it all, but to have
that, he had to tell her the truth about who he was…about why he stayed away
all these years.
York Times and USA Today bestselling author Shirley Jump spends her days writing romance and women’s fiction to
feed her shoe addiction and avoid cleaning the toilets. She cleverly finds
writing time by feeding her kids junk food, allowing them to dress in the
clothes they find on the floor and encouraging the dogs to double as vacuum
cleaners. Look for her Sweet and Savory Romance series, including the USA Today
bestselling book, The Bride Wore Chocolate, on Amazon and Nook, and the debut
of her Sweetheart Club series for Berkley, starting with The Sweetheart Bargain in September 2013. Visit her website or read recipes and
life adventures on her blog.
the author of more than 30 contemporary romance novels. She is a three-time RITA Award finalist, a
four-time National Readers’ Choice Award finalist and was nominated for Series
Storyteller of the Year by RT Book Club in 2008. She lives in Michigan with her
husband, their two sons and a former shelter dog named Pip.
career-long dreams. Her book, The Tycoon’s Secret Daughter was a finalist for
RWA’s highest honor, the Rita! The same year, Nanny for the Millionaire’s Twins was a Book Buyer’s Best Award finalist and National Reader’s Choice finalist.
for Harlequin and Silhouette, Entangled Indulgence, and one of Guideposts’ Grace
Chapel Inn series books, The Kindness of Strangers.
for entertainment or amusement from her over thirty nieces and nephews. Her
family’s Wednesday Morning Breakfasts are the highlight of her summer. And with
lots of her nieces and nephews now in their twenties, wedding season is in full
Pennsylvania with her husband, son and two crazy cats.
been a life-long romantic and daydreamer so it’s not surprising she decided to
become a writer at age eight. However,
it wasn’t until a co-worker handed her a romance novel that she knew where her
stories belonged. Her first Harlequin
Romance debuted in November 2010.
loves writing sweet, smart, ‘it-could-happen-to-you’ style romances. She lives in Massachusetts with her other
loves – her husband, their teenage son, and three very spoiled pets (as if
there could be any other kind). She also
loves hearing from readers.