The Bookshop on the Corner
by Rebecca Raisin
Who said that only real heroes could be found in fiction?
Sarah Smith had an addiction — she was addicted to romance novels. The meet-cute, the passion, the drama and the gorgeous men! Now this wouldn’t have been such an issue if she hadn’t been the owner of the only bookshop in Ashford, Connecticut.
Ever since her close friend Lil, from the Gingerbread Café, had become engaged she had been yearning for a little love to turn up in her life. Except Sarah knew a good man was hard to find— especially in a tiny town like Ashford. That was until New York journalist, Ridge Warner, stepped into her bookshop…
Love could be just around the corner for Sarah, but will she be able to truly believe that happy-ever-after can happen in real-life too?
Praise for The Bookshop on the Corner:
“How I wish this magical little bookshop was around the corner from my house! Brimming with heart, hope, and wisdom, THE BOOKSHOP ON THE CORNER is a wonderful novel about love, life, friendship, romance, books galore, and finding that happy ending.” –Mia March, author of The Meryl Streep Movie Club and Finding Colin Firth
“This story is every book lovers dream. Rebecca has brought the hidden depths of a book lovers mind to the surface and unearthed all of our bookish secrets that normally we would keep to ourselves. This story couldn't be any more perfect if it tried. I am in love with Rebecca's characters, the heart-warming connection between them all and the intertwined lives within the tiny town of Ashford.” –Becca, from Becca’s Books
“Excuse me, miss?”
The book fell from my hands as the presence of a man startled me. There he was, the rugged stranger with chiseled cheekbones, and a look in his eye that screamed take me to bed!
It took a moment for my brain to unscramble and realize I was not in fact living out the scene I had just read. Actually, it tookfar too long for me to understand that I was staring at him, my eyes wide, jaw hanging open, like some kind of fool. Gathering my thoughts, I coughed, clearing my throat, and donned my professional bookseller face.
“Can I help you? Let me guess, you’re looking for a book on…” I took in his appearance: tight denim jeans, casual white tee shirt, tight around the bicep region — I mean, wasn’t that uncomfortable? The sleeve of his tee looked as though it were practically cutting off the blood supply. I dragged my eyes back to his face, and my breath caught. I hadn’t seen a man so good-looking except in my imagination.
“On…” he prompted, raising an eyebrow.
Damn! No more romance reading during work hours.
I coughed again, this time more forcefully, to pull myself together and focus on the job of selling books. “Right, a book on, er…” It was a gift of mine to be able to garner what book a person was looking for just by their dress, and their mannerisms, but this guy had me stumped. All I could imagine was that little man crease thing, right where his jeans hung. Note to self: stop dropping gaze to his nether regions.
I was doing it again. The mute, bamboozled, mouth-open thing.
“I’d say you’re a thriller man.” There. Done.
He shook his head. “Wrong.”
Folding my arms across my chest, I said, “What do you mean ‘wrong’? You have thriller written all over you.”
He made a huge show of looking for the word thriller on his clothing; he pulled his tee shirt out, and, oh, good God…his six-pack rippled, exactly as it did on the hero of a Harlequin cover.
This time I shook myself as though I’d just come out of the ocean. I couldn’t keep clearing my throat and coughing; he’d think I was sick, or worse contagious, or something.
“Are you OK?” he asked, tilting his head.
I moved from behind the counter, and headed towards the front door. It was steamy in here all of a sudden. I made a mental note to open some more windows in future. And maybe stock an ice pack or two.
“I’m totally fine. Just a little hot.” I needed some space. This guy had me dreaming Harlequin, and I didn’t know how I was supposed to do that and keep the giddy, dreamy look off my face.
He followed me, leaning against the opposite door jamb. “Let me guess, you’re more of a romance reader?”
I double blinked and hastily said, “I am not!” Please tell me I didn’t say out loud his abs rippled. “I mainly read true crime.And horror. The gorier, the better,” I big-fat lied. For some reason he looked like the kind of guy who’d belittle romance readers, and I didn’t want to give him the satisfaction of knowing.
He gave me the once-over, a very slow up and down, that made me shrink under his scrutiny. “You look more like a romance reader to me.”
I squared my shoulders. “And what exactly does a romance reader look like?”
“Let’s see.” He scratched his chin as if he was contemplating. “She’s tiny, like a doll. Has perfectly cut black bangs, which highlight her mesmerizing doe eyes. Nervous around strangers, unaware that her hands flutter like the wings of a butterfly when she’s thinking things she doesn’t want anyone to know…”
I gasped, and put my hands behind my back.
“Her voice is husky, betraying her desires…”
“OK, stop. What’s with all the flowery prose? Are you a romance writer? Are you one of those men who moonlight asCindii Lovenest, or something, to help sell more books?” I narrowed my eyes at him.
He laughed, throwing his head back, and showed his perfect white teeth. No actually, this wasn’t a romance novel, let me adjust that — he laughed, throwing his head back, showed his perfect white teeth, which would one day in the near future, possibly ten years or so away, be not as white. There.
“I am a writer. Just not a romance writer. I’m a reporter from New York.”
“A reporter from New York, hey? Aha, let me guess, you want a self-help book? How to have it all? How to avoid living the cliché? No, wait, how to make every minute count?”
He put a hand to his chest and scoffed. “I detect sarcasm! Do you think us New Yorkers are that bad, really?”
I shrugged. “I only know what I read.”
“Which is romance.”
“Bloody, gory, zombie-loving horror with chainsaws, and ninja stars, and a little true crime, remember.”
Find The Bookshop on the Corner here:
US Amazon http://amzn.to/1jMmIWA
UK Amazon http://amzn.to/1lGBvED
AUST Amazon http://bit.ly/1fTDwWW
Find Rebecca here:
The Bookshop on The Corner blog:http://thecornerbookshop.wordpress.com/