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Runaway heiress bride, Kat Hubbard, thinks her knack for picking losers is in her family’s genetic code. Mayor Dean Mickler wants a new life, but won’t leave his town teetering on economic disaster.
When Kat destroys the town’s only source of revenue, Dean is forced to use her in a last-ditched effort to save Potter’s Kiln.
“I’ll bet the guy you left at the altar is real disappointed.”
Oh, that was smooth, Mickler. What a great opening line.
~ * ~
At the sound of the stranger’s husky, Southern Comfort-over-ice voice, Kat felt her toes curl. Strike one. Her gaze skimmed his sun-toasted torso, starting where the bib of his coveralls fell forward to reveal taut abs and a well-defined chest. Bronzed from the sun, brawny from honest labor, she surmised no tanning salon or executive gym had ever touched this man. Her gaze danced over his chiseled pecs to where he had tattooed a red and yellow superhero insignia on his left bicep. She adored men with great bodies. And she loved Superman. Besides being a bona fide hunk, he stood for Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Strike two.
Sinfully long lashes framed dark blueberry-blue eyes. Golden brown hair, kissed by the sun, fell in feral disarray to his broad shoulders. A wicked dimple in his left cheek peeked at her through beard stubble. His compelling gaze sucked all reason from her brain, causing her heart do an impromptu somersault. Strike three. She was doomed.
What motto did her grandmother, founder of Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard, a multibillion dollar gourmet frozen food company, claim to be the backbone of her success? Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Unfortunately, such an adage made mockery of her conclusion that all men were dragons and in desperate need of slaying.
Kat saw her hand reaching out to him, but covered her action by snatching her bra from his fingers to slip it on. The sun god-like cur made no attempt to avert his incredible eyes. In fact, his brazen stare caressed her bare assets, supporting her theory that she indeed had jumped from the fabled frying pan into the fire.
Spying her robe on the floor, she pushed to her feet. She had meant to put it on after throwing her gown overboard, but then realized she was being chased and...
Mr. Animal Magnetism dropped his gun to sweep her into his arms. She clung to him, desperate to resist. She would not fall for another man. The outcome always ended in disaster. And yet the warmth of his body, the strength of his arms made her wonder if he was unlike her past mistakes.
Fighting the urge to bury her face in his neck and bite it, Kat inhaled his evocative fragrance of beer, body musk and butterscotch. Like an aphrodisiac, the combined scents sent her senses spinning. She felt like a giddy teen in the throes of a sultry summer crush on her older brother’s beer-guzzling best friend.
“Put me down.” Her voice sounded strange to her own ears; throaty, breathless. Like a bubble-brained ingénue in a cheap made-for-TV romance. Disgusted with herself, she fidgeted. She did not care how good, how safe, it felt to be in this stranger’s arms. The events of the morning, her wedding day, had once and for all drummed home the point that she was not cut out for love or a lasting relationship. With that said, she would do everything in her power to protect herself from a life of heartache. “I said put me down.”
With deliberate slowness he slid her down the length of his torso to her feet; the hard muscled parts of his chest abrading the soft sensitive parts of her chest. Her body burned beneath the emotional inferno in his eyes. Despite her façade of indifference, she blushed. Her resistance ebbed; he looked delicious. It would be so easy to indulge, if just for the hell of it.
No. The actions that morning confirmed all men were bastards. Hunks with bedroom eyes and dimples were no exception. Temptation to immerse herself in this Southern superhero, Inferno Man, would pass. She just needed time to ground herself until she could regain composure, although her composure had been both abused and tested since her discovery that her brother considered her a fool and a commodity to be bought and sold.
Kimberley Dehn says she is addicted to storytelling and would write, even if she never got paid to do it. “Writing is my passion. I am a writer first. I'd like to be a good wife and mom to my 9 (yikes!) cats, but my brain is constantly wrapped around some plot, so therefore, I am a writer first. I do a daily balancing act keeping my home clean, my cats out of trouble and my husband from finding out how much trouble the cats really get into. I like being solitary, which allows me time to plot and write, but realize I can't spend my whole life with my hands on the keyboard, so I enjoy friends who jolt me out of my routine and remind me there is life beyond writing.”
Kim grew up on the shores of Michigan's Lake St. Clair where she developed her passion for writing; her school years spent half-listening to the teacher while scribbling her latest work-in-progress in the back of her notebook.
“I married the first guy who asked me (good thing I liked him a whole lot) and, fresh from our marriage vows, moved to Florida to enter the wild world of restaurant ownership. In between serving lunch and dinner, I honed my writing skills by joining First Coast Romance Writers as their first Newsletter Editor. My credentials include writing book reviews, articles geared for novice writers, and I have finaled in, and won, multiple writing contests.
Besides her addiction to storytelling, Kim enjoys photography (“check out the shadow ‘cleavage’ on my book cover”), traveling, and she is a passionate (some say obsessive) animal lover.
“Due to my husband’s work, we move frequently and currently reside outside Memphis with our cats, most of them seniors. Aside from managing a feline nursing home, I've dedicated myself to rescuing strays, and over the years have found them great homes among family and friends… who now avoid me when I begin a sentence with, “You should see the cute cat that showed up today in my yard.” I have a Master’s degree in pet grooming, although I prefer to do freebies for friends in exchange for home-baked cookies or wine and cheese.”
Southern Exposure: From the opening line to the last page, you’ll be laughing out loud and in for a good time. Ms. Dehn has a wonderful sense of humor and her wit is evident in every quirky character and off-the-wall scene. She has built a colorful little town, Potter’s Kiln, in Georgia, with a cast of characters that are definitely a one of a kind. The chemistry between the heroine, Kat, and the hunky hero, Dean, sizzles from their initial meeting and never lets up. As a matter of fact, they generate enough heat to have Atlanta burning all over again! Saving the town has never been so much fun. The plucky heroine has her hands full with the townsfolk and the hero who must convince her to reopen the plant, Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard that her family owns. I encourage you to pick up this book, Southern Exposure, and watch for more by Kimberley Dehn. I think she is a star on the rise. Zany characters, fast paced action, and witty dialogue make Southern Exposure a story not to be missed. --Patrice Wilton, Author, Replacing Barnie, www.patricewilton.com
Kimberley Dehn has created a warm and loving, yet at the same time, hilarious rollicking ride with her debut novel Southern Exposure. Reading her book is the perfect time to grab a cup of coffee, clear the afternoon and just sit back and have a good old time. Between chicken wars, local town gossip, and a wild storm, the reader will be caught up in the lives of Kat, Dean and Stevie. I laughed my head off at the descriptions of the town--Potter’s Kiln--and all its idiosyncrasies and eccentric townsfolk. However, in the midst of my giggles there were such beautiful tender moments that brought tears to my eyes. The scenes involving Kat and Stevie were very touching as they grew in mutual respect and love. Dean and Kat’s growing attraction held me spellbound and riveted to my chair to see what would happen next. I also fell madly in love with Junior and you must read this book to see who this charming character really is. This is a great story that captivated me and warmed my heart. I couldn’t put it down as I rushed to see how it would turn out in the end. I highly recommend it and look forward to many more novels from Ms. Dehn. --Suzanne M. Hurley, Author, Love’s Delusions, www.suzannemhurley.com
In Southern Exposure, Kimberley Dehn paints a charming and humorous portrait of life in a small southern town. Her colorful, three-dimensional characters make you want to kick off your shoes, pull up a chair on the front porch, and join in the local gossip while sipping high-octane iced tea. --Linda Rettstatt, Author, The Year I Lost My Mind. www.geocities.com/lindarettstatt
Southern Exposure: A runaway bride finds herself trouble, love and a home in Potter’s Kiln, Georgia....This is a very funny story with some very good love scenes. Before you can really settle down to enjoy it, suspend all of your knowledge of how the world and law enforcement work, because Potter’s Kiln is another planet as far as that is concerned. In my world, Basil would be in jail for a long list of crimes with Rooster right next to him, but in this backwater, federal and state laws regarding unlawful imprisonment, falsely reporting an incident, reckless endangerment and the like do not mean much. That aside, this is a tale full of off the wall characters, crazy situations and is in short a lot of fun. ... All this and more is in store for readers of this screamingly funny story.-- Maura, Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance,
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books
Book Publisher: Wings ePress
No. of Pages: 345
Paper Weight (lb): 14.4
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