What better way to choose a great book for your weekend escape than by reading a sexy excerpt?
Hence my feature, CABR Presents Temptation Thursdays
Today’s excerpt is from SEARCHING FOR PERFECT by Jennifer Probst 🙂
The up-and-coming matchmaking agency Kinnections is the hottest thing to hit Verily, New York – just like Kennedy Ashe, social director for the service she owns with her two best girlfriends. A coach, consultant, and cheerleader rolled into one super-sizzling package, Kennedy creates dream dates, encourages singles to shine, and never refuses a challenge—not even Nate Ellison Raymond Dunkle, rocket scientist, nerd extraordinaire, and Kennedy’s newest client.
Kennedy vows to work her magic and transform this hot mess in a lab coat with a disastrous relationship track record into the most wanted man on the Verily dating scene. If only she could turn the wand on herself… Though she radiates confidence and sex appeal, Kennedy harbors deep-seated insecurities from a tormented past and lifelong struggle with weight issues. When she realizes she and Nate are cut from the same cloth and might be perfect together, can Kennedy learn to let her heart lead the way?
Or will her fears sentence her to the sidelines as Nate finds love – with someone else?
Jennifer Probst’s introduction to her TEMPTATION THURSDAYS excerpt from “Searching for Perfect”:
Kennedy is giving Nate a makeover and they stop to eat at Mugs restaurant. They’re finishing up the meal and ready to leave.
His thumb pressed into her palm. Her pulse picked up, yet her body felt sluggish. She shook her head and tried to figure out her reaction, but the waitress glided by, placed the check on the table, and mercifully, he released her hand.
“I gotta go,” she said.
“Yeah, me, too. I’ll walk you out.” He put cash on the table and cut off her protest before she even opened her mouth. She allowed him to pay again, and they stepped out the side door near the parking lot.
Torrents of rain whipped in a fury, and the dark sky lit up with jagged streaks of lightning. She looked down at her high heels and held back a groan. Great. Good-bye, designer shoes. They’d be a muddy mess by the time she got to her car.
He stood with her on the edge of the sidewalk covered by the awning. “Better wait it out a bit,” he shouted over the roar of the storm. “You’ll get drenched, and we don’t have an umbrella.”
A pool of water dripped from the gutter and sprayed her in the face. She jumped back and yelped, but Nate had already pulled her closer to the door and blocked the brunt of the storm with his body. Her back pressed against the brick wall. The rain pounded the awning and she shivered from the damp.
He quickly shrugged off his lab coat and tucked it around her, grabbing the sleeves in the front and dragging her close to his chest. The deliciousness of his body warmth enveloped her, and she softened against him. “Better?”
“I can’t see a damn thing. Stupid glasses.” He slid them off and stuck them in the pocket protector. “I’m sure it’ll ease off in a minute. It’s never this strong for too long.”
“Probably.” He didn’t smell of pine or ocean today. Instead, his natural male scent rose to her nostrils and swarmed her senses. Clean soap, rain, and a hint of some spice. Cloves? She tipped her chin up to complement him on getting rid of the cologne, then froze.
His eyes weren’t brown, as she had originally thought, but a deep moss green, with flecks of gold. With his hair pulled back, she noted the strong lines of his face, placed together in an almost beautiful symmetry she’d overlooked before. His lips were perfectly formed, the top a bit thinner and defined, the lower one generous and lush. His mouth looked soft. She wondered what his lips would feel like over hers.
“Ken?” Her name ripped from those lips in a husky growl. She blinked and tried to find her footing, startled by his referring to her so intimately, but not entirely sure she minded.
“What about us?”
Brain alert. She tried to break the weird spell, but he slid his hands up to cup her cheeks and thunder shook the ground and somehow his body was pressed tight against hers. He engulfed her with a quiet, intense presence that demanded her response. As though on cue, her body lit up and begged for more. She grew damp between her thighs, and her nipples hardened to tight little points, and within those few seconds, she was completely turned on by her geek rocket scientist.
“There is no us. I’m your matchmaker.”
Her victory of sane speech was short-lived. Those thumbs stroked under her jaw and began to trace the lines of her mouth. The fascinated, intense look on his face thrilled her. Had a man ever looked at her so . . . hungrily?
As if he craved to feast on her for hours without end? A shiver bumped through her. “
Eliza and Professor Higgins hooked up at the end of the movie.”
What was he talking about? Her heart beat so loudly she heard it over the raging storm. Oh, My Fair Lady. “You saw that movie?”
His mouth quirked. “Of course. I watched a bunch of so-called chick flicks and classic musicals to study the female mind and what she may find romantic.”
Holy crap, she couldn’t make him up if she tried. She dragged her tongue across her dry lips and watched his eyes light up with intent. Uh, oh. “They were terrible for each other. He didn’t respect her enough.”
“Yes, he did. Once she woke him up to the possibility of a match, he was done. He loved her from the first. He just didn’t know it yet.”
Oh, she was in trouble. She clawed for sanity, but his thumb pressed against her now damp lips and slipped inside just an inch to touch the tip of her tongue. The move was so damn sexy she forgot her clever response to his statement. She was an accomplished flirt, dated a wide variety of men, and knew every maneuver to block an unwanted kiss or touch like a black belt. Yet, here she stood outside of Mugs like a helpless virgin, waiting for him to do something she didn’t want.
“I want to kiss you.”
“Don’t think that’s a good idea.”
“Agreed.” He lowered his head so his breath struck her mouth. “Don’t care.”
His kiss broke all barriers without violence, urgency, or crazed passion. He simply claimed her mouth completely without question. His big hands cradled her face and his tongue slipped inside like he belonged there. Whisper-soft lips melded to hers and sipped at her essence, savoring every smooth thrust, exploring each hidden corner and bestowing sweet pleasure. She moaned under the sensual assault and asked for more. His fingers tangled in her hair and tipped her head further back while he drank, tasted, demanded, gave. Her head spun and her knees weakened, and in that one moment, Kennedy fell completely under his spell.
He retreated slowly, nipping at her lower lip before pulling completely away.
Kennedy gripped his arms. Whoah.
Just . . . whoah. Most men would’ve gone for the jugular and pushed past her temporary weakness to their advantage. Nate waited patiently while she got her bearings. He studied her face as if committing every feature and angle to memory, and once again she got the sensation of being wrapped in a cocoon of security and warmth.
“You okay?” “
Yep. That was a mistake.”
“We learn from lots of mistakes. Can we do it again?”
A tiny laugh escaped. The last of the fog drifted away, and the rain slowed to a lazy drizzle. Kennedy dug deep for composure. She fought the urge to duck her head, and instead met his heated gaze head on. “No. I don’t date clients.”
“I’ll quit Kinnections.”
“Absolutely not. You don’t want me, Nate. I don’t do forever. I’m not looking for marriage or security or children right now. I just do . . . now.”
“I like now.”
A genuine smile curved her lips. She hadn’t actually liked a man in a long, long time. She forgot how good it felt. “No. Sometimes the lines get blurred with matchmaking, but I won’t let it happen again. We followed an impulse, but now it’s over. And I’m going to find you a wife. Someone you can love forever. Someone perfect.”
He seemed to analyze her words, picking them apart, studying, then sliding them all back into place to discover the full puzzle. Finally, he took a step back and nodded. “I won’t push. I respect your decision. But I won’t apologize.”
“Good, I wouldn’t want one.” The heat surged again between them but she was prepared this time and able to ignore it. “The rain stopped. I better go. Don’t forget to meet me at the salon tomorrow night. Six sharp. I emailed you the address.”
“Okay. Good night.”
Jennifer Probst wrote her first book at twelve years old. She bound it in a folder, read it to her classmates, and hasn’t stopped writing since. She took a short hiatus to get married, get pregnant, buy a house, get pregnant again, pursue a master’s in English Literature, and rescue two shelter dogs.
Now she is writing again.She is the NYT and USA Today bestselling author of The Marriage Bargain. She is published both erotic and sexy contemporary romance with Entangled, Decadent, Red Sage and TWRP.
She has also written a children’s book, Buffy and the Carrot, co-written with her twelve year old niece, along with a short story, “A Life Worth Living.” Visit her website for more info!
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