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Diana Lee Johnson
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When a widow with a grown daughter decides to further her education, she’s thrown into a world of unexpected possibilities. Pursued by a younger professor, and an egocentric doctor, she is torn by the striking opposites who disrupt her life.
One seems too good to be true; the other is too closed to be understood. It seems easier to forget them both, but it isn’t that simple.
Harry reached out and took possession of Carolyn’s hand, squeezing it.
The two words were delivered with such a tone of revelation that Carolyn wondered if his glasses had just cleared and he discovered her sitting there.
"No, I mean it. You’re cute! They told me you were nice, and lonely, and a good cook, but Kevin didn’t say you were cute."
"Uh, thank you..." I suppose. Her entire face ached from holding back a physical display of the aggravation she was experiencing.
"Myra says you like to cook."
"Well, yes, I do--"
"Good, you can come down to my house this weekend and cook us a meal. I’ll buy all the groceries, of course. We can make a day of it; plan the menu, go food shopping, and you can cook for me."
Carolyn realized he actually expected her to be enthusiastic about driving seventy-five miles or more, each way, to cook a meal for a stranger just because he would "buy all the groceries" and thought she was "cute."
"I don’t think so. I’m busy this weekend."
"Nonsense, you don’t work on the weekends. I checked. And you don’t have class on the weekend."
"I suppose you checked that, too."
"Of course. I like to know what I’m getting into."
What you’re ‘getting into?’ Well, I can tell you what you’re not ‘getting into!’ Carolyn had just shocked herself with her own thoughts. It was liberating. It would have been downright exhilarating if she could have said it aloud.
"I have other plans, Harry." Realizing her tone had been rather strong, Carolyn spoke more calmly. "I have research to do this weekend for a paper."
"So, you can do the research on Sunday. You can come down early Saturday morning... well, not too early, I rent out the upstairs of my house, and they don’t get up too early."
"I can’t do the research on Sunday, the library near me isn’t open on Sunday."
"Well, there are lots of libraries that are open on Sunday. So you drive a couple of miles. You’ll love my house. It’s over a hundred years old. I’m restoring it, a little at a time. Don’t have central heat installed yet, but have a baseboard unit in the bathroom and my bedroom. You won’t freeze this early in the fall."
"I know I won’t freeze, because I can’t come." Oh, how she wished she could just say "no," but the habit of sparing others’ feelings was too deeply rooted.
"Sure you can. You can even do your research after work on Friday, then you won’t have to worry about it Saturday. You can write your paper on Sunday, and we can have a good time Saturday. I do all my own housework, except I hate to do dishes. But I’ve installed a dishwasher in the kitchen already, so you won’t have to do dishes either, except maybe the pots and pans. It’s just a cheap dishwasher, so it doesn’t clean all that well."
"That’s lovely, Harry," she tried hard to make her clenched teeth resemble a smile as she spoke, "but I can’t make it."
"We’ll see. We’ll talk about it again later in the week. What’s your paper on?"
"Body language!" Carolyn wrenched her hand from his grasp.
"Oh, hey, well, I can tell you everything you want to know about body language. Lawyers study that kind of thing, you know, for trials."
"I never really thought about it." Carolyn was losing patience. "About how many trials have you represented someone in?"
"Uh, well, I wasn’t meaning me, per se, as a trial lawyer, I mean. I said we study that in trial law."
"Oh." She raised a knowing eyebrow and nodded. "Should you be watching for your carpool?" She hoped.
Harry looked at his watch. "Naw, I’ve got twenty-five more minutes. They’re very predictable."
Carolyn’s heart sank. He may have twenty-five more minutes, but she was sure she couldn’t last it out.
"So, what do you think you’d like to cook Saturday?"
"Nothing! Harry, I... can’t... come." She spoke very slowly and deliberately. "I have other commitments." Carolyn kept her voice low, but stern.
"I know, a paper to write."
Diana Lee Johnson is a native of Northern Virginia. By day she’s the Purchasing Agent for a municipal government. By night (and weekends) she’s a writer.
Stories flow through her mind like movies projecting in her head, waiting for her to find time to write them down. Diana must switch them off so she can work at her day job. “I weave a little of myself into everything I write. My characters take on their own personalities and I wait like the reader to hear what they say next.”
Writing poetry since the age of 6, Diana dabbled in short stories at 13, but took prose more seriously as an outlet after she turned 30. She enjoys writing fiction in several genres hoping to entertain a variety of readers with drama, suspense, humor, and romance. Her characters could be someone you know or someone so outrageous you can only imagine meeting them.
She would love to hear from you. Please visit her website:, or write her at P. O. Box 3003, Falls Church, VA 22043.
Dramatically written, this poignant tale will touch your heart. Diana Lee Johnson has penned another winner. I can't wait to read her next book.-- Judith Rippelmeyer, Editor in Chief, The Word On Romance, www.thewordonromance.com
Wrong Side of Love is a remarkable story with a clever twist that will surprise and amaze the reader. It is a meticulously compiled and authentic historical novel that takes place during the Civil War era and has an enduring theme of family love and devotion...Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
Castle of Sorrows: “How skillfully Diana Johnson has revealed yet another dimension of her craft with this exciting and enchanting novel. The colorful narrative in which Castle of Sorrows is clothed, and the skeleton of events on which it hangs, all show the marks of a storyteller who writes with sensitivity and is gifted with exceptional human understanding. This suspenseful novel is a thrill from beginning to end.”--Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
“Very different from Diana Lee Johnson’s previous books, CASTLE OF SORROWS is nevertheless an excellent read. Let Donald, Douglas, Dierdre, Grandee, and the ghosts of the past enchant you. Drift away to the beautiful Scottish countryside, filled with castles and tradition and enjoy CASTLE OF SORROWS.” --Judith Rippelmeyer, Editor in Chief, The Word on Romance
Tomorrow Came Early, the much-anticipated sequel to Too Late for Tomorrow, is a fabulous read! The saga of the spirited Hamiltons continues in this moving and powerfully written historical novel set at the end of the Civil War. The love, devotion, and courage of this dynamic family, especially young Andrew Hamilton, will touch your heart and soul as you read this compelling story; family secrets and intrigue will keep you on the edge of your seat. Prepare to be carried away on the wings of this highly recommended book!-- Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
…Steeped in the rich history of the turbulent pre-Civil War and Civil War years, TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW sets readers deep into the heart of the issue of slavery and its consequences on this nation. Deftly intertwined with the issue of slavery, Ms Johnson adds Jeremy and Gabby's personal tale of love, deception, and obsession.
I wouldn't consider this a light read, or mere entertainment, but an attention involving novel. TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW is nevertheless a marvelously written story from the pen of a wonderfully erudite author. Readers who love Civil War period romances will adore TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW. I highly recommend it. --Judith Rippelmeyer, The Word on Romance
An exciting and heartwarming story of family love! This is a must-read book for anyone who loves historical romances, particularly those of the Civil War era. The characters are rich and full, with family ties and love being the strings that bind them all in one way or another. This is a novel of a family forced to deal with strong beliefs and opinions, frequently at odds with each other, but always with love enough to fill even the reader's heart. You will want to read every word on every page of this Civil War saga. I have just three more words to say: sequel, sequel, sequel! --Tina Dean, Assoc. Editor, Virginia Writing
Just Deserts is a sweet read. Warm and witty characters, a fabulous story, and a dollop of humor makes this recipe another winner for Diana Lee Johnson. Make room on your keeper shelf for Just Deserts. -- Judith Rippelmeyer
Pretty as she is, Carolyn isn't looking for love when she enrolls in a college course. However, in the weeks that follow she finds herself being courted by two men who are determined to win her affections while having much more in mind than just their amorous feelings.
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
No. of Pages: 266
Paper Weight (lb): 11.4
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