Three authors joined forces to create SEX ON THE BEACH, which is comprised of three novellas set in one literary world. These standalone novellas include BETWEEN US by Jen McLaughlin, BEYOND ME by Jennifer Probst and BEFORE YOU by Jenna Bennett. Today, I am spotlighting BETWEEN US by Jen McLaughlin with an excerpt. And keep your eyes peeled for the giveaway!
Title: Between Us (Sex on the Beach)
Author: Jen McLaughlin
Date of Publication: March 4, 2014
I’m just a girl…I’m a famous country star who’s spent her life cultivating a good girl persona to avoid bad press, but I’ve reached my limit. I’m going away for spring break with my two best friends from college, and we’ve vowed to spend the vacation seeking out fun in the sun—along with some hot, no-strings-attached sex. The only thing I needed was the perfect guy, and then I met Austin Murphy. He might be totally wrong for me, but the tattooed bad boy is hard to resist. When I’m in his arms, everything just feels right.And I’m just a guy…I’m just a bartender who lives in Key West, stuck in an endless cycle of boredom. But then Mackenzie Forbes, America’s Sweetheart herself, comes up to me and looks at me with those bright green eyes…and everything changes. She acts like she’s just a normal girl and I’m just a normal guy, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. My past isn’t pretty, you know. I did what I had to do to survive, and she’d run if she learned the truth about my darkness. But with her, I’m finally realizing what it’s like to be alive. To laugh, live, and be happy.All good things must come to an end…
As I made my way over to the guy at the bar, making sure to swing my hips just so to attract his attention, I lowered my head. I might be a virgin, but I’d won Who Sings It Best at fifteen, and I’d been starring in music videos since I was sixteen. And what was in music videos? Sex, sex, and more sex. It might not be actual sex, but it was all about the approach and the hotness factor. And I had that down pat, so I could totally fake the rest. It was all in the confidence.
Even if the confidence was fake.
His gaze skimmed over me the closer I got. He adjusted his position on the barstool so he was turned slightly toward me. I knew this guy at the bar was the type of guy to fit into my strict plans. I could feel it in my bones, the same feeling I got when I played the right chord or heard a song that I had to sing.
It just fit.
“This seat taken?” I asked, my country drawl a little bit more obvious with a drink or two already in me.
He gestured at it with his left hand. “Please. Sit.”
I scooted up onto the stool, stealing a quick peek at him from under my hat as I did so. I eyed his ink, making out a few foreign words in bright colors, and some black swirls inked around the words. Flames too.
“Thank you,” I said, motioning toward the bartender. He came over and smiled at me. “I’ll have another Sex on the Beach, and I’d like two more for the table over there.” I pointed at my girls, waving at them to show that I knew them. They waved back, then whispered to each other. I turned back to my guy. “And another of whatever he’s having.”
He cocked a brown brow. “Do you always order for other people?”
“Sometimes.” I lifted my head slightly, still not making full eye contact thanks to my wide-brimmed hat. “I’m a girl who knows what she wants and goes after it. Is that going to be a problem?”
He laughed lightly, the sound musical. Oh, the girls had been right. I bet this guy could sing the dress off an angel. “No, that won’t be a problem. I’ll have two fingers of Maker’s Mark, please.”
I handed my card to the bartender. “Ah, so you’re a whiskey guy? Before he died, my daddy always used to tell me to find a man who could appreciate the finer things in life.” I deepened my voice. “‘Find a man who can sit back and enjoy the sunset and the way the waves roll over the beach on a stormy day. And he should also appreciate things like whiskey and Cuban cigars.’”
“They’re illegal,” the man on the barstool said, leaning closer. “But I do enjoy a good Cuban. Sunsets and the ocean, too.”
I flushed, my stomach tightening at the way he’d dropped his voice. This guy was affecting me in ways I’d never felt before. “Good to know you like breaking the rules every once in a while.”
He laughed again, his fingers clutching his glass. All I could see of him, due to my hat, was his hand and his legs, which were encased in torn blue jeans. Because of this, I could just barely make out the dark hair on his thigh. “You have no idea.”
Hot. Really hot.
About Jen McLaughlin
Jen McLaughlin is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author. She writes steamy new adult books for the young and young at heart. Her first release, Out of Line, came out September 2013. She also writes bestselling contemporary romance under the pen name Diane Alberts. Since receiving her first contract offer under the pen name Diane Alberts, she has yet to stop writing. She is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.
Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal-clear water. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal-clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, a cat, and a Senegal parrot. In the rare moments when she’s not writing, she can usually be found hunched over one knitting project or another. Her goal is to write so many well-crafted romance books that even a non-romance reader will know her name.