Hotter Than Texas
by Tina Leonard
Perfection takes time, but desire waits for no man. Or woman…
Pecan Creek, Book 1
With more than one skeleton rattling in her closet, Sugar Cassavechia hopes “The Most Honest Town in Texas” will be the perfect place to start an online business. As soon as her mother remembers the family recipe that’ll get hotterthanhellnuts.com off the ground.
In the meantime, no way is Sugar letting their new landlord get away with renting them a run-down house that’s decorated like a rich widow’s orgasm. Even if he’s the biggest hunk of hot she’s ever laid eyes on.
Jake Bentley would love to do nothing but sit back and be amused as the Cassavechia women unwittingly stir up trouble in his uptight town. But something about them thaws out his frozen rescue complex. Especially Sugar’s long, chestnut hair and sassy mouth.
Right about the time Sugar figures one steamy night in Jake’s bed won’t hurt, another skeleton joins the party in the form of a dead body in the “Belle Watling” room. And Sugar must decide if her family’s reputation—and her own heart—are safe with Jake.
No sex in this book. Nope. None. Nada. Honest. Now, if you believe that, the author has an iceberg in Texas to sell you. Better hurry before there’s none left to cool the fevered dreams generated by this book.
“We want you to be our princess,” Dodie said.
“Princess of what?” Lucy looked around at the group. “We market sexual goodies.”
Minda smiled. “Princess of Pecan Creek.”
Lucy sat down at a worktable. “I’m sorry, have you all made the acquaintance of Vivian Bentley? She hates me, remember? And my family?”
“We know,” Charlotte said. “And while no one has done more for Pecan Creek than Vivian, and we absolutely bow to much of her vision for Pecan Creek, we think that the real way to bring new life to our town is younger people.” She gazed at Lucy’s cut-off shorts, short tank top and ankle tat. “We’re going for hip and happening. We can have all the Christmas parades we want, and all we’re going to lure out here is folks who want to retire. You put a different face on Pecan Creek.”
“I thought you wanted a parade mayor that would give an honest, gentle vibe to Pecan Creek,” Lucy said.
“Yes,” Dodie said, “there’s comfort in that. But as far as a princess, we think we need a girl who makes guys see that we have something sexier out here than what they might expect in a small town.”
“Single men don’t come to parades,” Lucy pointed out. “Families do.”
Charlotte nodded. “We realize that. So we’re going to rent the town billboard for December and put you on it.”
They practically glowed with their idea. Lucy felt their approbation flow over her, and it felt good.
But in the back of her mind, she knew Vivian had dug up some secrets that hardly made her an unsullied princess. “My family and I are trying to lie low. Vivian plus Cassavechias equals trouble.”
“Think about it.” Minda smiled beatifically at her. “We’ve already picked out a dress for you and hired a photographer.”
Lucy shook her head. “This is not a good idea. Let me see the dress.”
They took her to a closet in the workroom, opening the double doors with a flourish. A white minidress with fringe hung inside, twinkling with occasional sequins. Sky-high white heels that any model would love made Lucy gasp.
“Like it?” Charlotte asked. “We think it’s very now.”
“Very happening,” Dodie added.
“Sexy,” Minda said, “and we know better than anyone that sex sells.”
Lucy touched the short, fringed dress. “I just think you should know that Vivian put a dick on my family. And he found that we don’t have the most princessy past.”
They looked at her. “Neither do we,” Dodie said. “Did you murder anyone?”
“No,” Lucy said, “there are some things Cassavechias don’t stoop to.”
“Then we won’t worry about taking the speck out of your eye,” Charlotte said. “No one in Pecan Creek is pure as the driven snow. Vivian’s excitable at times. Ignore it, if you can, dear.”
Lucy smiled, looking at her friends gratefully. “I can’t wait to wear that dress and ride in the parade.”
Having lived in Texas for more than a few years, and having spent summer vacations there during my “formative” years, I’m sure I’ve met these characters more than once in my half-century of living, and I must say, I love them as much today as I did the first time I ever threw my hand over my mouth to keep from giggling out loud.
This is a fun-filled and fanciful book that begins the Pecan Creek series with a town full of nuts and more than a few pecans to boot! It is a hilariously fun look at small-town Texas, and kept me on my toes trying to imagine what the Cassavechia women would come up with next.
Totally loveable and highly recommended!
~Patricia, Room With Books~ © Feb 14, 2014
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author Tina Leonard has sold over 2.6 million copies of her titles. She has made the USA Today Bestseller, Waldenbooks, Bookscan, and Ingrambook lists, and has written and contracted seventy-one books and special projects. Her work has been published by Harlequin, Samhain Publishing, Robinson Scarlet, and most recently Random House Loveswept contracted for a single title trilogy project, Hell’s Outlaws. Leonard was chosen to be among the first authors published for Robinson’s Scarlet line, writing four single title novels for that imprint. Not long after, she sold on proposal to Harlequin American, where she has since written several popular series, most notably the Cowboys By The Dozen, Morgan Men, and Callahan Cowboys series. Her newest single title project, HOTTER THAN TEXAS, was published in March 2013. Leonard is known for her fun sense of humor, endearing communities, snappy dialogue, and memorable characters.
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