To celebrate this week's release of Beginning with Their Baby, I thought I would give away From Friend to Father (how's all that for alliteration?????) It's the first book in my Austin, TX trilogy (BWTB is the second one and the third one, Unguarded, comes out in December of this year). Since the first two books have babies in them, and I'm desperately trying to name my characters in my new book, I thought I'd ask-- what's your favorite name (for a baby or a character)? Leave a comment to be entered to win From Friend to Father. I'll choose a winner sometime tomorrow afternoon.
And here's another quick excerpt from Beginning With Their Baby, just because :)
“What are you stocking up for, World War Three?” Camille asked in amusement as Matt loaded their grocery cart with three different types of apples.
“I’ve got a busy week ahead—I don’t have time to come back here.” He dropped two heads of broccoli in a bag, then laid them gently on top of the apples.
“Yes, but I happen to have an almost completely open schedule this week—I can stop in and pick something up anytime.”
“Why would you want to?” he asked as he headed toward the dairy section. “It’s easier to just get whatever we need for the week in one trip.”
“But how do you know what you’re in the mood for all week? What if I suddenly get a craving for Fettuccini Alfredo on Thursday and all we’ve got is chicken and broccoli?”
He looked at her sharply. “Are you craving fettuccini?”
“No. That was just an example.”
“Are you sure?” He wheeled down the pasta aisle, pulled a box of the thick pasta off the shelf. “Because we can get some—"
“Matt, you’re missing the whole point.” She let out a disgusted sigh.
“No, I’m not. You don’t want to be tied down, even to something as basic as chicken on Thursday night.”
“It’s not about being tied down—it’s about not knowing what I’ll be in the mood for.”
“It’s about the fact that you can’t commit to anything more than forty-eight hours in the future.”
“I’ve committed to having this baby, haven’t I? And to living with you.”
“Yeah, but for how long?” Matt smirked at her, and though his tone said he was clearly teasing, the look in his eyes had an edge of seriousness that made her uncomfortable.
“You don’t really worry about that, do you? Me walking out?”
“Come on, Camille. Let’s just get the shopping done.”
“No.” She reached out, put a hand on his arm and felt the familiar zing as his energy rushed through her. When was she going to get used to it? To him? They’d been living together for almost a month and he still curled her toes whenever he looked at her. “I want to talk about this.”
He glanced around the busy supermarket. “Not now.”
“Why not now? If you’re really concerned—“
“Concerned? Shopping more than forty-eight hours in advance is too much commitment for you. Why wouldn’t I worry about you getting bored and taking off on me?”
She stopped dead in the middle of the aisle, tried to assimilate his words. “I wouldn’t do that, just take—“ She paused in mid-sentence as Matt skewered her with a patently disbelieving look. And she guessed she couldn’t blame him. She had left him high and dry once before—was it any wonder he thought she’d do it again?
But this was different. She was happy living with Matt, happy with the commissions she’d picked up to do portraits instead of having to struggle to sell her art on the streets of each brand new city. Her restless feet had lost their urge to run, and though she didn’t know how long it would last--- surely she’d get the itch to move on sometime—for once she was in no hurry.
It took her a minute to sort her thoughts out and by the time she worked herself around to what she wanted to say, Matt had already turned the corner on the next aisle and she was forced to rush to keep up with him.
It made her uncomfortable, was too reminiscent of her parents’ relationship for her to brush it off. She’d spent her whole adult life blazing new trails and she resented the fact that Matt expected her to follow him blindly, even as he was insulting her. She wasn’t some meek little housewife to follow behind her man, no matter what he said or did.
She watched as he turned yet another aisle, not even glancing behind him to see if she was following, and the little itch between her shoulder blades ratcheted up a notch. Turning on her heel, she walked in the opposite direction, toward the front of the door and then out the big, sliding glass doors at the front of the building. If she remembered correctly, there was a little jewelry and handbag place over to the right …
Camille spent the next few minutes browsing through purses and earrings, two of her favorite things. Though she only owned one bag—how many could she carry, after all—she’d had a love affair with earrings since she was a kid. She had a traincase full of the dangly, sparkly things.
Her cell phone rang as she was holding a pair of bright red chandelier earrings up to her ear, trying to get an idea of how they would look. For a second, she contemplated letting it ring, but figured there was no need to be bitchy. Surely, she’d made her point.
Fishing the small, purple phone out of her bag, she wasn’t the least surprised to see Matt’s number on the caller ID.
“Where are you? I’ve searched the entire store for you.”
“I’m next door, at the accessory store.”
There was a long silence. “You’re where?”
She made sure there was a shrug in her voice when she answered, “You didn’t seem to need me, not the way you were blazing trails up and down the aisles.”
“You couldn’t tell me you were leaving?”
“I would have had to run to catch up with you.”
“And God forbid you should do that, right? Camille Araby doesn’t chase after any man.”
Again, leave a comment for a chance to win the first book in the trilogy, From Friend to Father :)