Thanks so much for letting me visit here today and share a little about Clear As Day, a sweetly scorching contemporary romance about two friends with benefits facing the fears and uncertainties of their changing relationship.
I’ve been asked occasionally, why a heroine who is commitment-shy? I didn’t set out to write a commitment-shy heroine, but Kay was from the moment she showed up on the page, even though she and Nate were already friends and lovers and thought they knew each other very well. Nate is good-hearted, loving and loyal, why on earth would Kay not leap at a chance for forever with him? I kept asking why, and learning Kay’s story as I wrote each draft of Clear As Day was a fascinating experience.
Kay Browning is an artist, specializing in watercolors, and to those around her, a happy free-spirit. However, she’s seen enough of the hurt and dark turmoil love and marriage has caused in her own dysfunctional family and the world around her to know those are not for her and hides the pain of her past from everyone. Her childhood experiences and adult observations of relationships have left her very cautious, thoughtful, and nearly OCD exacting, and she believes love is only true in fairytales. Friendship is all she will allow. She believes she is content with the quiet, organized life she’s made for herself and the peaceful, friends-with-benefits relationship with Nate.
Nate Quinn is a photographer whose wanderlust keeps him traveling about the globe most of the year, and that very absence has helped make him the one man who’s been able to get past Kay’s wary heart. However, despite his happy-go-lucky ways, wanderlust, impulsive decision-making, and years of traveling, Nate longs for commitment and settling down. Coming from a close, loving family, Nate believes love is forever and Kay is his forever.
So, of course, Kay and Nate painfully discover, despite those years of close friendship, just how much they didn’t know about each other and had assumed. Nate’s faced with just how hard loving can be and Kay finds denying love doesn’t keep it from happening to her.
Kay now must choose: be ruled by her past and security of habit and keep herself walled off from emotional entanglement and potential pain or open herself to trust in Nate and his love and deliberately set out on an unanticipated new future where the outcome is not in her sole control. They now needed to learn to really talk and listen to one another, take risks, and truly trust, if their friendship was to survive and love they’d always shared have a future.
Sometimes falling in love with “the one” isn’t as clear as we’d like it to be and sometimes it hits us like lighting. Do you have a favorite memory of when you knew you were in love?
What’s a girl to do when her summer lover wants forever?
Haunted by dark memories of her parents’ volatile marriage, artist Kay Browning keeps her heart locked behind a free-spirit facade and contents herself with the comfortable affair she has every summer with easygoing photographer Nate Quinn.
The only trouble with her plan? This summer Nate’s come to Lake Mohave to claim the lover he can’t let go. He’s done with the endless traveling and settling for temporary homes and temporary loves. Kay’s always been more than just a vacation fling, and now he must convince this woman, who sees love as a course to certain heartbreak, to take that leap of faith and learn how safe love with the right man can be.
With a splash, she erased the frustrating daydream. This wishful imagining fixed nothing. Her sheltered little camp would still be empty. Should she give in, pack up the camp, and hit the road north to Lake Mead instead? Just break her routine for once.
No, but it was definitely past time to get her tush out of the water and do something constructive. This lonely gnawing in her bones and brain was unacceptable. Kay pushed to her feet, facing out to the scenic lake created out of a stretch of the Colorado River and the rugged land beyond shimmering with heat.
Work, right, but it was too early in the day for the hard afternoon light she needed for the Coyote Point painting. She was too restless to read or fish and not in the mood to take the boat over to the marina, chat with George, and buy ice.
She rolled her shoulders and stretched, enjoying the hot air licking over her wet skin. As she wiggled her feet in the sand and gravel-bottomed shallows, a flurry of minnows darted past her ankles, and her silver toe ring glinted beneath the clear water. She paused, caught by the possibilities in the sparkling sun on water and the intricate, shifting reflections over gravel. Yes! Exactly the distracting challenge she needed. Shaking the water from her ears, she pivoted toward camp.
“Kay!” That male voice was not her imagination.
“Oh, shit!” She twisted and dropped into the water, sinking neck-deep. Mother always said, among other things, that a lady never goes skinny-dipping and must always wear a proper hat. Kay was only half skinny-dipping, but she fervently wished she’d worn something a bit more substantial than a baseball cap and the bottom half of the quintessential teeny-weenie yellow polka-dot bikini.
Shit, oh, shit, oh, shit. She so hated when Mother was right.
Okay, time to find out who’d just gotten an eyeful. The guy had called her name, so she should know him. Oh boy, if she’d flashed old George…
She wiped water from her face, sucked in a breath against her pounding heart, and peeked around.
She must be sun-dazed. Nate? With a beard? Hair curling over his ears? No way. Just because a familiar slouchy fishing hat topped those unruly, sun-bleached blond curls and just because this guy possessed the same deep-water tan and footloose taste in clothes as Nate with his electric blue Hawaiian shirt, bright orange swim trunks, and beat-up deck shoes didn’t mean—
“Hey, babe. Now that I’ve finally caught your attention, how about a hug from my girl?” He opened his arms. “Am I coming in after you or are you coming out?” Only Nate’s voice held that mellow timbre like chocolate for her ears.
“Nate! What…” Giddy delight flushed over Kay, clearing her shock. She dashed from the water and into strong arms, a wonderful hug, and a better kiss that launched her mind into a blissed-out whirl of oh, yes and why?
The oh, yes won out until the need to breathe forced them apart.
Nate gave her a long look, his usually easy gray eyes holding a new, simmering heat.
Bio: Babette James writes contemporary and fantasy romance and loves reading nail-biting tales with a satisfying happily ever after. When not dreaming up stories, she enjoys playing with new bread recipes and dabbling with paints. A teacher, she loves encouraging new readers and writers as they discover their growing abilities. Her class cheers when it’s time for their spelling test! She lives in New Jersey with her wonderfully patient husband and three extremely spoiled cats.
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/BabetteJamesAuthor
Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/E1ur-avq5YI
Clear As Day can be found at:
The Wild Rose Press– Paperback & eBook http://www.thewildrosepress.com/index.php?main_page=index&manufacturers_id=952
Amazon.com – Paperback & Kindle http://amzn.com/B007RN9STW
Barnes & Noble – Nook http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1109990576?ean=2940014230902
Come fall in love at the river.