Thursday, December 19, 2013

Strong is Sexy Heroine of the Week: Laney Calhoun

Book: What Once Was Perfect
Author: Zoey York
Heroine: Lacy Calhoun

Laney Calhoun had two goals across high school and college: kiss Kyle Nixon, and get into medical school. The kiss happened, and a whole lot more, but when her journey to become a doctor took her away from their small town, it also meant saying goodbye to her first (and only) love. Twelve years later, Laney comes home for the holidays and they have a second chance. But Laney's career is 400 miles away, and she knows better than to hope for anything more than a vacation fling.

In What Once Was Perfect, Laney's been burned, and she's reluctant to open her heart again, but she's starting to realize that there's a difference between strong and brittle. With the support of her sister and her mother, she figures out what she can be flexible about, and finds the strength to be honest--with herself, and with Kyle. How Laney embraces her new-found emotional freedom is both sweet and sexy.

She'd just had the best sex of her life, with an ex-boyfriend she'd spent the last decade pretending didn't exist, in his adorable half-finished, renovating-by-himself one room schoolhouse. Unsettled wouldn't even begin to describe how Laney should be feeling, and it didn't matter, because how she actually felt was pretty damn good.

But vacations come to an end, and saying goodbye a second time is hard.
“There’s more for you here than just dessert.” This time the suggestion was clear and deliberate, and that funny feeling crystalized into bittersweet pain. Kyle flicked off the light and tugged her into the crook of his arm. “I don’t want to freak you out, or push you, at all. I like you, a lot, and I don’t see why this—” he waved his hand over their bodies “—needs to be a one-time thing.”

Laney swallowed hard around the lump in her throat, and she willed herself not to cry. If she cried, she would run away, and much to her surprise, she didn’t want to do that this time. She wanted to tough out this conversation and get to the other side. “Oh, Kyle,” she said with a heavy breath. “I don’t see how it can be anything but. My life is in Chicago, and that’s not going to change.”

“You don’t see yourself ever moving back home?” Kyle asked the big question without judgment or expectation, and a tiny fissure split the surface of her heart. Every step of her career had taken her further from Wardham, from Kyle, and now she was realizing too late that she didn’t leave an emergency hatch in the master plan. Even if they explored a long-distance relationship, her life had no room for compromise. No room for her to be the true partner that Kyle deserved. She couldn’t lead him on. She took a deep breath, and swallowed past the growing knot.

What Once Was PerfectBlurb:
Heading home always stirs up mixed emotions for Laney Calhoun. Twelve years ago she left for graduate school, broken-hearted. She’s found professional success, but positive personal relationships have proved elusive. Running into her ex-boyfriend fans flames she thought long extinguished, and causes a renewed interest in love. Not with Kyle, of course. Never again. But as sparks fly and items of clothing disappear, she scrambles to keep her emotions in check.

Kyle Nixon let Laney slip away once. Their chemistry together is undeniable, but steamy sex is not enough to convince her to let him back into her heart. Even if she did trust him again, her medical career is five hundred kilometers away from the hometown that he loves, and the life that he once chose over her.

What Once Was Perfect is a short and sexy contemporary romance novel set in Wardham, Ontario, a fictitious small farming community on the shores of Lake Erie.

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