Friday, December 19, 2014

Spotlight & Giveaway - The Winner Takes It All (Something New #2) by Jennifer Dawson


The Winner Takes It All
Something New # 2

By: Jennifer Dawson
Releasing December 2nd, 2014
Zebra / Kensington  



For two stubborn people… 

Corporate mogul Shane Donovan sees the ultra-cool, collected Cecilia Riley as an ice queen—even if he can’t deny that, on the surface, she’s a work of perfection his body can’t ignore. Forced to spend two weeks in the same house for his sister’s upcoming wedding, Shane senses that deep down Cecilia mirrors his need. And he’s determined to draw her into a sexy game that will melt away her reserve...     

Losing is not an option… 

Career-driven Cecilia Riley has just enough free time in her schedule to head out of town for her brother’s wedding. But her agenda is thrown for a loop by the presence of Shane. Though his over-confident attitude leaves a lot to be desired, his insanely hot body has kept Cecilia up nights. Unsure what game Shane is playing, Cecilia takes the bait, bent on resisting him at all costs.  


“What exactly is going on here?” Shane asked, that deep voice sending a tingle down her spine despite her fatigue.

            They’d find out soon enough. In fact, she was surprised none of them read the article. She should tell him and end this little game he was playing once and for all. Except she didn’t want to. As soon as he discovered the truth he’d go back to looking at her with the contempt he’d always shown her, and selfishly she wanted to enjoy her reprieve a little longer.

            She shook her head. “Nothing.”

            “Bullshit. You’re making a everyone tense.” He popped another cheese curl into his mouth.

            It stung, a lot more than she cared to admit.

            It shouldn’t; she’d always been an outsider, especially with this bunch. But before, when she felt lonely or excluded, she’d relied on the knowledge that she was her dad’s favorite. That someone in this world loved her and thought she was special. Now she knew better. The loneliness covered her like a wet blanket, damp and cold and heavy. Not that she’d ever let it show. In a calm tone, she said, “I just got here.”

            “And you’re putting everyone on edge.”

            “What am I doing?” Temper flashing, she put her hands on her hips. “I showed up because your sister wanted me to. I’ve been polite, cordial, and haven’t once mentioned the nation’s deficit. So how exactly am I making everyone tense?”

            “That’s what I want to know. “ He took a big gulp of his stupid Mountain Dew.

            He was infuriating. Plain and simple. “How is any of this our business?”

            He but the can back on the counter. “It’s not.”

            She blinked, thrown off guard by the unexpected answer. She steeled her spine. “Then we’re in agreement.”   

            “Not really. I’m still going to find out.”

            “What do you care? You don’t even like me.” It was the first mention she’d made about the way he treated her, and he didn’t even know why she said it. It was probing. Fishing for answers. She knew it and he was smart enough to know it too.

            “You’re right, I don’t like you much.” His tone matter-of-fact.

            And there it was: the truth.

            That little spark that had grown inside her every time he texted flamed out. Disgusted to find she’d harbored some sort of deep-seated hope. For what? She wasn’t sure and refused to let herself wonder. Throat tightening, she put on her most impassive expression.

            Well, good. She had evidence now. Evidence sure to cool her desire. She squared her shoulders. “Then stay out of my way and I’ll stay out of yours.”

            “He put both hands on the counter. “Yeah, that’s  not going to happen.”

            She almost too a reflexive step backward but was able to stop at the last moment. Instead she said, “Excuse me?”

            Nice comeback. Not.

            He pushed off the counter, his green eyes looking distinctly predatory.

            She was too damn tired to do battle with him. She wanted to retreat until she felt like herself. But she couldn’t do that.

            Never show weakness. Never break.

            “There’s no way,” he said, standing mere inches away but thankfully not touching her, “I’m going to be able to ignore you for a whole two weeks.”

            What did that even mean? “Look, I don’t know what your problem is, but we are living in the same house, so for Mitch and Maddie’s sake, let’s just be civil.”

            “Here’s the problem with that,” he said, his voice dropping an octave. “I don’t’ feel civil around you.”

            Another woman, a more flirty one, interested in capturing his attention, would ask seductively how she did make him feel, but Cecilia wasn’t that kind of woman and never would be. Better to keep her distance. Besides, he didn’t like her. In her most dignified tone she said, “I don’t know what game you’re playing, but stop it. It’s not welcome.          

            Liar, liar, pants on fire.

            “Is that so?” He curled his hand around the back of her neck, touching her for the first time, ant it was like an electric shock. She had to force herself not to wrench in response. His thumb brushed over the pulse hammering in her neck.

            So very telling.

            “Yes.” The word entirely too breathless. Lightheaded, she forced her eyelids to remain open as his fingers stroked over her skin. She should pull away, but couldn’t find the will power. Who knew if he’d ever touch her again?
            “I don’t think you girlfriend would appreciate this.” The second the words left her mouth she wanted to kick herself. Why on earth would she say something so revealing?

            Her only excuse was that we was so close and she was so tired.

            One golden brow, several shades darker than his hair, rose. “Girlfriend?”

            She sucked her bottom lip between her teeth.

            His eyes darkened to a deep shade of emerald.

            The damage was done, she’d show her hand, and now the only thing left to do was spin control. She tried to pull away, but his fingers remained locked on her neck. “Let me go.”

            His mouth twitched as though containing a smile. He lowered his head, making her heart beat frantically against her ribs, and whispered “I knew it.”

            She sucked in a breath. God, he smelled good: like soap, and spice, and summer. Somehow she managed to say in a calm voice, “What are you talking about?”

            “You’re jealous of Gracie.”

            How did he know that? She reared back. “I am not!”

            “Even you have tells.”

            “You’re insane. I don’t have tells.” Did she? How had she given herself away. She’d been so careful. She waved a hand in a failed attempt to bat him away. “Besides, there’s nothing to tell.”

            His fingers played over the cords of her neck as though he had every right to touch her. “I’m not sleeping with Gracie. Or any other woman, for that matter.”

            Relief, swift and powerful, stole through her. But she managed to say the good, proper Cecilia thing. “Who you do or don’t sleep with his none of my concern.”

            “We’ll just see about that, won’t we?”

            “No, we won’t,” she said, surprised at the steadiness of her voice.

            He smiled, and it was pure carnal sin, transforming his too good-looking face into something dangerously gorgeous. He dropped his hand and stepped away.

            To her humiliation, she immediately missed his heat.

            “Game on, Ce-ce.” Then he turned and walked away.


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Author Info:

Jennifer Dawson grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and graduated from DePaul University with a degree in psychology. She met her husband at the public library while they were studying. To this day she still maintains she was NOT checking him out. Now, over twenty years later, they’re married and living in a suburb right outside of Chicago with two awesome kids and a crazy dog.

Despite going through a light FM, poem writing phase in high school, Jennifer never grew up wanting to be a writer (she had more practical aspirations of being an international super spy). Then one day, suffering from boredom and disgruntled with a book she’d been reading, she decided to put pen to paper. The rest, as they say, is history. 

These days Jennifer can be found sitting behind her computer, writing her next novel, chasing after her kids, keeping an ever watchful eye on her ever growing to-do list, and NOT checking out her husband.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


Rafflecopter Giveaway:
Two Print bundles of the Something New series, including:  Take a Chance on Me and The Winner Takes It All
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