Author: Sandy James
Series: The Ladies Who Lunch #2
Release Date: July 1st 2014
Publisher: Forever Yours
When life gets tough and love is hard to find, four friends take their troubles to lunch. High school teacher Juliana Kelley tells the Ladies Who Lunch that her life needs an overhaul... and gets a whole lot more than she wished for.
Juliana has spent thirteen years in the same teaching job. She’s ready to dive into a new career with both feet... when a run-in with the hottest man she’s ever seen knocks her head over heels. But with her failed marriage to a fellow teacher fresh on her mind, Jules can’t afford to lose herself in a relationship—no matter how perfect it may seem.
Connor Wilson has hit rock bottom when he loses his career as a top-notch Realtor because of a large gambling debt. Now, in a small town he finds a fresh start—and a gorgeous redhead who sparks new life into him. Together they start a successful real estate company, but when pleasure sneaks into the business, they’ll have to decide what they can let go... and what they can’t live without.
Connor Wilson leaned back in his chair and waited for the presentation to start. Not that the seminar was going to change his mind about facing this new real estate market solo. He was there strictly for research, learning everything he could about the competition.
He’d made this move to such a small market for all the right reasons, and there was profit to be had here. He could smell it as easily as a pig sniffing for truffles.
Max Schumm. Cloverleaf’s number one Realtor. He held court near the front of the conference room, close to the table his assistants had piled with swag—calendars, pens, refrigerator magnets. Not a surprise that his office staff, his minions, were all women while his Realtors were mostly men. He counted only two ladies in the bright blue Schumm blazers, and every advertisement he’d checked contained listings by males.
The town and the surrounding counties were ripe for the picking.
Time for the king to get knocked off his throne.
Glancing around the three big, round tables set with six places each, Connor sized up the people who thought they might have the chops to sell homes. A pitiful lot it was. He’d dismissed each and every one, noticing Max doing the same thing as he appraised the newbies. The only person Max kept staring at was Connor, probably because he knew a true salesman when he spotted one.
Perhaps he even recognized him from his past. Indianapolis wasn’t a huge market, but it was somewhat close and Connor had been well known there. Two years away wasn’t all that long to distance himself from making sales or getting new listings. Their paths might have crossed on a long-distance move, although he was sure he’d have remembered a man like Max. Damn if the guy didn’t look like an eighties game show host, from his oversprayed hair to his fake tan to his far-too-white teeth.
What Max didn’t know was that Connor had no intention of becoming part of Schumm Homes. While Max would undoubtedly make him an offer of employment, there was only one firm Connor intended to work for—the newest agency in town.
The time for the program to begin came and went, causing him to make a mental note, matching the information he’d already gathered. Tardiness was one of Max’s sins. He had others, but the most mentioned was his disregard for other people’s time.
Just as Max stepped closer to the podium, talking in low tones with the Ramada’s technical advisor, a kid who had to be right out of college, a couple appeared at the double-door entrance.
Connor caught and held his breath when he saw the woman.
Hair the color of a setting sun—the most gorgeous shade of natural red he’d ever seen. It was long and down, bouncing around her shoulders in wavy cascades. She wore a perfect black dress. Not a slutty “little black dress” but one that would work fine for business and pleasure, with a square neck that showed a hint of generous cleavage. She was curvy without being too curvy. Her legs seemed to go on forever, and the black stilettos were enough to finish him off.
He was no longer thinking about Max Schumm or real estate or the Cloverleaf market. Connor wasn’t going to be paying an ounce of attention to anything anyone had to say tonight. Not with the redheaded vision heading right for his table. Too bad she was with another guy, because there was nothing he wanted more than to take her home.
It had been a long time since he’d felt such a swift and severe attraction. The closer she drew, the harder his heart pounded. Since the last empty seats were at his table, it was a given she and her escort were going to sit next to him.
“Mind if we sit here?” she asked, her husky voice hitting him right in the groin.
“Um, no. Go ahead.” Then the blood started flowing back to Connor’s brain long enough for him to remember his manners. He stood up and pulled out the chair for her, drawing a lopsided smile from her escort, who hadn’t made a move to help.
She dropped a rather large black purse on the floor, sat down, and smiled sweetly over her shoulder as Connor pushed her up to the table. “Thanks.”
Her perfume drifted his way. Something light yet sensual. Hell, everything about her was sensual. She moved like a feline, all sleek lines and confidence. He wanted to sweep the gorgeous creature into his arms, carry her up to his third-floor room, and make love to her until they both collapsed in sated exhaustion. He let a light chuckle slip as he wondered what she’d say if he up and told her exactly what he was thinking.
She tossed him a charming smile, but he couldn’t enjoy it because he was too busy looking to see if she or the guy who’d escorted her to the table wore a wedding ring.
Neither did, and Connor did a mental jig. He wasn’t leaving without this beautiful creature’s phone number.
Maybe his fresh start in this new place was truly going to be his salvation. Maybe he could really leave his past behind and forge a new life here after all. Maybe a leopard could finally change his spots.
For the first time in as long as he could remember, he felt the confidence and purpose that had been missing for far too long. He would make a life for himself here, earn a decent profit, and maybe get back to the world of the living.
Only time would tell.
Signed, Sealed, Delivered is book two in the series The Ladies Who Lunch. This time around the main character is Juliana Kelley. She is a special education teacher that is feeling the many years she has worked at her job. Wanting to give her life meaning again and the happiness she deserves, she decides to quit and start a real estate business. She has the people skills and is savvy enough to make it work.
Juliana heads to an uneventful realtor seminar and meets a hunky guy. They have a fling, and the next morning she runs out the door without a word. Little did she know that Connor isn't the type of guy to give up. The two run across one another later in the book and decide to make a joint effort in the real estate field. My ultimate question while reading was how are two people that hooked up going to manage to work together 24/7?
Sandy James excels in weaving stories with strong character relationships, whether it be a romantic or friendship. I've noticed this in a previous series of hers that I read, as well as this one. It leads to a phenomenal read that will have you feeling like you're part of the story. She also mixes in real life situations such as fighting/surviving breast cancer or even living with a form of addiction and makes the story relatable. All while having an awesome set of characters that I enjoyed getting to know. I cannot wait for the remaining two stories in The Ladies Who Lunch series. This series is a must read!
About Sandy James:
Sandy and I teamed up and are doing a giveaway! One winner will get a $10 Amazon or B&N gift card (winner's choice). 2 other winners will get books 1&2 of The Ladies Who Lunch series (The Bottom Line and Signed, Sealed, Delivered).
Giveaway will end at 11:59pm on 7/11/14.
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