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Travis Denton discovers he has an eight year old daughter Brooke, and he travels from California to meet her. His arrival in New Zealand throws Darcy Farrell’s life into turmoil. Travis demands custody of his daughter, and is determined to take her back to America with him. He vows to prove Darcy is an unsuitable guardian and she wonders why this stranger dislikes her so much.
She decides to do what’s best for Brooke and finds herself in close contact with Travis. This creates a bigger problem when she becomes physically attracted to him! Unfortunately all Travis is interested in is gaining custody of Brooke. Darcy’s outlook is grim as she prepares to fight for Brooke’s future and tries to deny her love for Travis.
Travis Denton leaned casually against the brick wall, his stare fixed on a villa on the other side of the street. The door of the house opened and a woman and child emerged. The golden-haired youngster skipped happily beside her companion and Travis smiled as the girl’s chatter drifted across the road.
He switched his glance to the woman and his eyes clouded with confusion. The way she was dressed was startling. Legs clad in fishnet tights disappeared under a miniscule black miniskirt, which rose even higher as she strutted down the street. She turned to speak to the child, and he saw her lips were thick with bright red lipstick, which mirrored the colour of her spiky fingernails as they patted her piled-up dark hair. A laughing response to a comment from the child shook the cheap plastic earrings dangling from each ear, and they knocked against the turned up collar of her black leather jacket. A skimpy yellow rib top showed beneath the jacket and Travis noticed it stopped just below the breasts to expose a bare stretch of suntanned stomach.
Travis frowned. He had travelled to New Zealand from California to meet eight year old Brooke and her aunt, Darcy Farrell, but the sight of the woman in her flashy clothes and overdone make-up worried him.
His temper rose when a car pulled up and the woman bent down to speak to the driver, her breasts swaying enticingly. She straightened up, took a step backwards and stuck her leg forward, then with one hand on her hip, she lifted her skirt suggestively. The action disgusted Travis and left him with no doubt about her profession. How dare she ply her trade when she had the child with her! Grey eyes darkened with fury when both Darcy and Brooke got into the car.
He cursed under his breath. If what he had just witnessed indicated the morals of Darcy Farrell, his reason for being here was even more urgent. Travis wished he could follow them, but he’d been so concerned about not being seen that he’d parked his car on the next street. Jaw muscles clenched. He knew now that he must win the battle ahead.
Still frowning, Travis walked back to his vehicle and returned to the hotel.
* * * *
The strange car drawing into the side of the road surprised Darcy, but she struck a cheeky pose when the driver rolled down the passenger window and she realised it was Phil Callaghan.
“Hi, Darcy. Like the new car?”
“Very nice, Phil. I almost didn’t recognise you.”
“Can I give a lift to the two most beautiful girls in town?” He grinned.
“We haven’t far to go,” Brooke informed him importantly, her freckled nose tilting defiantly and her tone frosty. “My friend, Minnie, only lives around the corner.”
“You speak for yourself,” Darcy told her. “Dressed in this outfit, I stand a good chance of being accosted by every strange man we see. Is it okay if we drop Brooke off at her friend’s house?”
“Sure, no problem.” Phil leaned across and opened the door.
Brooke climbed reluctantly into the rear seat while Darcy wriggled into the front, tugging at her short skirt to try and prevent it from riding further up her thighs.
“Hold on, ladies,” Phil cautioned, as he let out the clutch.
Darcy turned to Brooke and sighed. The girl was looking out the window, deliberately ignoring Phil. She wasn’t sure if Brooke’s dislike stemmed from Phil personally, or if the eight-year-old was frightened that the man might destroy the closeness between them.
“Have a nice sleepover. I’ll see you tomorrow.” Darcy kissed Brooke as she got out of the car. “Give me a ring when you want to come home.”
She had to call out the last words, as Brooke was already halfway up the path to where Minnie waited at the front door.
“Looking forward to the dance?” Phil asked as Darcy squirmed back into the front seat. He revved the engine as he pulled back into traffic. “You sure look the part in that outfit.”
"…somewhat reminiscent of the Harlequin romances this reviewer read in her youth…It is tender and sweet, a most refreshing alternative to many of today’s contemporary tales. This is not to say that the story is without the requisite sexual tension that makes romances so compelling…. A great spring read! Recommended!"
4 hearts Reviewed by Leah
Three Hearts was an enjoyable read. I grew to care about both Travis and Darcy, even though occasionally you want to hit Travis for his totally oblivious determination to tear his daughter from the only home and mother she’s ever known. While the story occasionally slows to a crawl, I was still invested in Travis and Darcy’s finding their happy ending together. Three Hearts is most certainly an enjoyable way to spend an afternoon!
By Melissa from Joyfully Reviewed
“Three Hearts is one of those gentler contemporary romance stories that leaves its reader smiling at the ending. There are ups and downs in the plot and Travis and Darcy do butt heads but overall there is a softer feel to this book than many other books have. It is a refreshing change of pace, and it kept me spellbound. The dialogue flows smoothly, the characters are well written and although the attraction between this couple is obvious it is not without obstacles. Brooke is an ordinary child and endearing to the reader since she seems like a little girl that anyone would know. New Zealand’s beauty shines in this. I could see it all. I enjoyed every minute of this story. Well done, Ms. Perkins!” 5 Angels! - Reviewed by: Carly, Fallen Angel Reviews
Book Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
No. of Pages: 190
Paper Weight (lb): 8.2
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