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"Trust me, Maddie. I'll be right behind you."
"What if I fall?"
"I can skate faster than you can fall," he whispered, and Maddie closed her eyes against the shiver that enveloped her body…
Ice Hockey. Strong coffee. His infant son, Duncan. Three things Jack McKenzie could not do without. Now he was about to add a fourth: Beautiful, green-eyed Madelyn Cross has reappeared in his life after a 20 year hiatus, with a load of baggage and a history riddled with emotional landmines. He could keep her from falling on the ice, but could he keep her from falling into the rabbit hole to the past, making a treacherous journey back to another time and a passion thought long dead? "You waited for me before, can you do it again?" Maddie begs him. Of course Jack will wait. He has no choice; he is In Too Deep…
"I wonder if we’ll see any stars," Todd said as he and his mother hurried across the NBC Studios guest parking lot toward the lobby doors. Humoring him, she shrugged a "maybe" kind of shrug, not wanting to dash his childish hopes of possibly bumping into one of his TV heroes. And for just a brief moment, she shared some of that magical anticipation; who’s to say one of these cars didn’t belong to Jerry Seinfeld?
"Whatcha gonna do while I'm in there?" Todd wanted to know as they reached the entrance. "Read one of your law books?" He opened his mouth wide and pretended to stick his finger into his throat.
"Nope. Today I'm treating myself to a romance. None of your business anyway," she said, wrinkling her nose comically. "See you later."
Maddie Tyler gave her son a discreet wave and left him waiting with the others in the lobby. The park across the street seemed as good a place as any to pass the time until Todd was finished, so she found a bench with an adequate view of the studio doors and opened a book.
The morning air felt crisp but not particularly cold, the sun burning off all but the last traces of last night's cloud cover. She couldn’t seem to stay with the book; the people in the park were more fun to watch. Behind her, boys kicked around a soccer ball, their shouts of both triumph and discord carried on the breeze in sporadic puffs. A couple sitting beneath a tree reminded her that indeed, the world could end any day, and they were making the best of it. Maddie sighed, remembering when it really didn’t matter if the grass was damp.
There were the usual Frisbee-catching dogs and skateboarders grinding along the curbs. Somewhere the rhythmic plat! plat! plat! of a basketball dribbled along an asphalt court. Young mommies pushed tots in swings and all seemed just right with the world.
Across the street, cars came and went from the NBC parking lot. Maddie remembered that as a child, she was in awe of even riding past a real television studio. Surely every car belonged to a star, driven by the likes of David Cassidy, Robert Redford or Michael Landon.
She was startled from her daydream by an abrupt thump! against the back of the bench. She retrieved the errant soccer ball and tossed it back to the waiting goaltender. The breeze felt wonderful. On a whim, she pulled the barrette from her hair and shook it out with her fingers. These days she didn’t care too much about how it looked. It was often wound up in a large clip. Her eyes, sometimes green, sometimes brown, frustrated her because they never seemed to look the same way twice. And she hated the term "hazel.”
Turning back toward the street, she noticed a man pushing a baby stroller down the sidewalk. What a great sight, a dad taking time out to walk his child on this beautiful day! As she watched them proceed up the street, she noticed something small and yellow fall from the stroller. The man kept on walking.
She waited a few seconds to see if he noticed the object. She tossed her book onto the bench and gave chase after the man and stroller, now far down the block. The lost item turned out to be a small knitted bootie, which she picked up, and she continued to walk quickly behind the man. She had almost caught up with them when the man turned unexpectedly, nearly running her down with the stroller.
"Oh!" she said in surprise, bending down to brush off the toe of her shoe.
"I’m sorry," he said, pushing the stroller to the side. "Are you all right?"
“Everyone needs a little romance in their lives,” Anne Carter will assure you. “Some need more than others.” She should know. A storyteller since 7th grade, Anne and her younger sister would dream up a new chapter to a romantic saga each night before going to bed. Soon, writing became an obsession. Raised in Southern California where she, her husband and three children make their home, Anne interrupts her passion occasionally to run her bookkeeping business and possibly put dinner on the table.
Although A HERO’S PROMISE centers on the lives of those stellar gods and goddesses of the silver screen, Anne is quick to point out that this book isn’t about Hollywood glitz. “I’ve always been a teenybopper, and proud of it,” she confesses. “But my stories reach to the human side, the deep, heart-wrenching emotions unleashed by the forces of true love.”
A HERO’S PROMISE is Anne Carter’s fourth published novel. Visit her website at www.beaconstreetbooks.com
"A good mystery romance that keeps the reader guessing for most of the story. In Too Deep is rich with turmoil, and ties up all the loose ends.
"Ms. Carter had done an excellent job with In Too Deep. It is rare to find a hero as believable as Jack, and a heroine as true to life as Maddie. Their trials are real life and their fears and anxieties something every reader can relate to. Ms. Carter's story is funny, touching, and poignant. A true pleasure from beginning to end." --Tamara McHatton, Rhapsody Magazine
"Maddie Tyler has no idea what she’s setting in motion on the day she speaks to the man who was her first high school crush. Maddie is married, with a teenaged son, but her marriage is floundering, her heart is vulnerable, and Jack MacKenzie is by all accounts a wonderful man. Maddie’s husband wants a divorce, and Maddie realizes she doesn’t love him. Soon she’s falling in love with Jack. Her life is looking just about perfect. But life is not done with Maddie. Behind the scene, someone is watching, someone who has a vested interest in how Maddie’s life turns out.
"Anne Carter writes competently about life and love. Her characters are real with flaws as well as heroic qualities. In Too Deep is Maddie’s story, and following her sometimes mundane, sometimes turbulent life, is fascinating. 4-1/2 stars" --Rickey R. Mallory, Affaire de Coeur
“A VERY enjoyable story, unique and thought-provoking.
IN TOO DEEP has so many unique and exciting twists and turns that I couldn't turn my Rocket off until I knew how Anne Carter planned to solve her heroine's dilemma! The characters are well-drawn and believable, the story unlike any romance I've read. It leaves the reader with a smile and the feeling that Jack McKenzie and Madelyn Cross were made for each other. I would recommend this book to anyone in search of a satisfying, warm-hearted romance. “
"IN TOO DEEP is the sweet, tear-jerking story of two people who have both failed miserably in love, but finally get it right... [Maddie and Jack's] love is of the sweetest kind, and their chemistry is wonderful..." -- Christine Chambers, Romantic Times
“...Dane has mellowed, but...he’s still the most amazing, vital, appealing hero I have had the pleasure of curling up between the covers with in a very long time!” -- Roberta Olsen Major, author of BOUND
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
No. of Pages: 252
Paper Weight (lb): 10.8
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