On Tour with Prism Book Tours.
A DEA stealth mission has brought coast guard Lt. Commander Eli Pelletier home. But when he ends up aiding rescue swimmer Aubrey Wynn during her own harrowing mission, powerful emotions reignite between them. Except Aubrey doesn’t want Eli’s protection. She wants answers.
Twelve years ago, Eli broke up with Aubrey without telling her the real reason he was leaving Pacific Cove. How can he try for a second chance if he’s forced to deceive her again? Amid suspected drug trafficking and a sabotaged Christmas contest, Eli must find a way to regain Aubrey’s trust without compromising his career or endangering the woman he loves.
Carol Ross lives with her husband and one loveable miscreant of a dachshund in a small town in Washington close to both the ocean and the mountains. She adores the Pacific Northwest because it provides her with endless opportunities for the activities she loves—hiking, running, skiing, and spending time outdoors. Although she enjoys reading in many genres, she writes what she loves the most—romance, especially light-hearted stories about the fun, flirty, and often-tumultuous path toward a happily ever after.
Other Books by the Author
December 13th: Launch
Thoughts of a Blonde
Katie’s Clean Book Collection
Bottles & Books Reviews
Rockin’ Book Reviews
beck valley books
Books, Dreams, Life
Nicole’s Book Musings
Christy’s Cozy Corners
I Am A Reader
i blog 4 books
Book Lover in Florida
With Love for Books
Reading Is My SuperPower
underneath the covers
Getting Your Read On
December 20th: Grand Finale
– 1 winner will receive a $50 Amazon eGift Card and a copy of Christmas in the Cove (signed copy if US, ebook if international)
– Ends December 24th
~ Guest Post ~
A Man Who Knows His Way around a Kitchen
I have a soft spot for a man who knows his way around a kitchen. It’s kind of like a guy who’s not afraid to cuddle a kitten. It gets to me like that. He doesn’t have to be a gourmet chef, pretty much anything that’s edible and that I don’t have to cook myself will do. It’s the thought and the effort that counts, right?
In Christmas, in the Cove heroine Aubrey is a bit of a health food nut. With her job as an elite Coast Guard rescue swimmer, her health and fitness is top priority. She mostly stays away from sugar but one of her favorite indulgences is buttermilk pancakes with peanut butter and sliced bananas. I love this scene where hero Eli invites her over for dinner and surprises her by making them for dinner. She’s a goner when she realizes that he not only remembers her favorite foods, he remembers a whole lot of other stuff, too.
His lips were curling at the corners and all she could think about was the way they used to feel pressed against hers. What was going on here? Whatever it was, she needed to halt it in its tracks.
“Ha, ha, ha.” She squawked out something that sort of resembled laughter as a mix of nerves and confusion and desire churned inside her. “Remember that time you and Alex put the frogs in my rubber boots?”
His lips formed an official grin but his eyes remained glued to her face. “You have no proof that we did that.”
“All these years later and you still can’t admit it? You know, I still can’t put on my boots without shaking them out first?”
“All I know is that you screamed so loud Mrs. Frampton called the cops.”
They laughed together and this time it was genuine on her part. This was true. The Framptons had lived next door to the Wynns and the woman had indeed called the police upon hearing Aubrey’s screams. Even now, she shivered as she recalled the feeling of sliding her sockless foot into her rubber boots while those frogs jumped and twitched and crawled on her bare skin.
He turned serious again, his expression searching.
He softly uttered the two words Aubrey had longed to hear for so many years. And even though he was apologizing for a childhood prank, she knew they meant more. She couldn’t stop them from sneaking right past the guard she’d so carefully constructed around her heart.
He reached out a hand and cupped her jaw, caressing her cheekbone with his thumb. Tilting his head forward, his warm breath swirled around the shell of her ear, and she felt herself melting like the pat of butter on the pancakes before her. She started to grip the counter to keep from losing her balance, but he slid an arm around her and pulled her close.
“You smell so good,” he whispered. “Like vanilla and chlorine. For so long after I left, even a hint of vanilla and I could stake my life on the fact that I would dream about you that night. It was pure torture…”
She watched his mouth descend toward hers. The movement was both too fast and too slow at the same time as fear and desire waged a quick battle inside of her. As soon as his lips touched hers, it was all over. Champion desire, she thought, as she returned the kiss with everything she had.
One hand slipped around the back of his neck while the other gripped the rounded muscle of his shoulder. Eli let out a groan as she pressed herself closer. She melded to him like water on dry sand. His hands and lips seemed to be everywhere at once but she still couldn’t get enough.
Threading her fingers through his hair, she pulled him closer. He found her lips for another kiss, deeper this time, and Aubrey thought she might explode from wanting this. Him. So much.
Eventually he pulled away, leaving her completely breathless. That morning’s set of fifty-meter freestyle sprints was nothing compared to this. She could hear his ragged breathing, too, as he kept her close and kissed his way across her cheek until his lips were nibbling on her neck.
“I have missed you every single day for twelve years,” he whispered against her skin
Like Aubrey, I love my pancakes. (I especially love when my husband makes them for me.) I’ve tried a lot of buttermilk pancake recipes over the years. This one from Cook’s Illustrated Cook Book is absolute pancake perfection – light, fluffy and moist. Yum.