Return to Newport
Genre: Contemporary / Adult / Romance
Eve is ready for a clean slate. She nearly lost the love of her life in The Return. Now Eve must confront the people refusing to let her go quietly into her happily ever after with Jake. Returning to Newport to tie up loose ends may be the biggest mistake of her life.
Jake wants one thing – and one thing only – Eve. He is ready to build a life with her, and spend the rest of his days loving only her. But his surprise visit to Newport makes him question everything he thought he knew about her, including her love.
At the center of the turmoil is Eve’s ex-husband. Intrigued by the changes he sees in her, Brad is determined to sabotage Jake and Eve’s relationship – and take Eve back.
Jake and Eve must face their demons, and battle the outside forces that seek to destroy their future. Can their love survive the Return to Newport?
Jake. It nagged at her that she had still not had a word from him. She walked into the kitchen to find some crackers to calm her now upset stomach. What the hell was going on? She heard the kitchen door open, but had already pressed the button for Jake’s phone, and she didn’t turn around. Clarissa’s voice filled the air around her.
“Hey, Mom, I have a surprise for you,” her voice sang.
“Hold on Clarissa, I’m on the phone. I haven’t heard from Jake all day,” she muttered more to herself than for Clarissa’s benefit. Jake’s voicemail picked up, and Eve shifted her weight as she heard the beep. “Jake, where the hell are you?”
“I’m right here, beautiful,” came the deep voice behind her.
Eve turned around, and her eyes met the most beautiful blue eyes that she had ever seen – the ones that held the deepest love – all for her.
“Jake,” she exhaled, and came towards him. Her arms went around his neck, and she launched herself at him. He wrapped his arms around her waist, holding her tightly against his body. She pressed her lips against his, tilting her head to the side, and slipping her tongue into his mouth. She was desperate for him, needed to feel him, make sure he was truly there.
“Geez, you two, get a room,” Clarissa’s voice giggled behind them. Eve placed her forehead against Jake’s, eyes closed, and breathed him in. All the worry, the fears – the demons – all of them melted away with the stroke of his hands across her back.
He exhaled, and pulled Eve tighter against his body, whispering in her ear, “Now everything feels right again.”
Genre: Contemporary / Adult / Romance
Eve Carlisle had a singular purpose – sell the rustic house nestled in the Colorado ski resort town.
Tortured by her husband’s betrayal, the beautiful divorcee refused to give her heart to another man. But Jake had been a happy surprise, with his mesmerizing blue eyes, warm smile, strong but gentle nature – as well as being incredibly sexy.
She had convinced herself the relationship with Jake was nothing more than a fling. After all, she had a life in Newport, with society friends and a lucrative career as a family court judge. Still, Jake had a definitive hold over her, and she was finding it hard to think clearly where he was concerned.
The demons of prior failed marriages haunt them both, and threaten to end things just as they are beginning. When Jake tells Eve he is falling in love with her, Eve refuses to believe it can last. Returning to Newport, the hollowness of her existence exposed, she must confront her fears before she loses Jake forever.
He pulled her face to his and as his lips found hers, she accepted them. Eve could feel his need and desire. She pulled back slightly, breaking the connection. Jake placed his forehead against hers. “I’m sorry,” he whispered.
“No, I am. I’m just confused, that’s all,” Eve admitted.
Jake pulled his head back and gazed into her eyes. “What are you confused about?”
“I thought you just wanted to be friends, and that’s fine, but I’m not good with the friends-with-benefits thing; which sucks, by the way, because I would really like to be with you right now.” Her voice was hurried, and she nearly tripped over her own words in embarrassment.
“Wait,” Jake looked at her, a deep crease across his forehead, “are you under the impression that I only want to have sex with you?”
“No, I know you just want to be friends. But then you keep kissing me, and I have no idea where that leaves us as friends. I’m just saying that I’m not good at blurring that line. It’s apparently a failing of mine in this day and age.” Eve was completely uncomfortable with the conversation and was kicking herself for not letting Jake kiss her and seeing where it led them.
“Why would you think I only want to be friends-with-benefits?” Jake asked. He was completely dumbfounded by the turn of this conversation.
“Jake,” Eve tried to assure him, “it’s totally okay. I get it. I’m only here for a few weeks. There are a lot of fish out there, many of them younger than me that are able to offer you more than I can. And I’m okay with just being friends. I just can’t go back and forth between the friends-lovers role. It’s just not me.”
“So, basically you’re under the impression that I only want to be friends with you because I’m holding out for a younger woman. And you think that I want to have sex with you tonight, and go back to just being friends tomorrow? Does that about sum it up?” Jake’s voice elevated slightly. He face was flushed, and another crease burrowed into his forehead.
“Okay, I’m not upset. Why are you?” Eve asked, not sure why this conversation had set him off.
Jake exhaled loudly. “I’m not upset—I’m frustrated. I have no idea what I’ve done to make you think I want to be with a younger woman. Let me be perfectly clear—I am not interested in finding a younger woman. I would not ‘just be friends’ with you in hopes of finding a younger woman. I am not at all interested in having any type of relationship with a younger woman.” Jake took a hold of Eve’s hand, and tried to compose himself. “I have never met your ex, so I don’t know anything about him; however, I think he’s an idiot. How he could possibly let you go is mind boggling to me. The fact that he set his sights on a younger woman, when he had you, is insane. I would never—NEVER—keep you at arm’s-length hoping to find a younger woman. That’s not my style.”
Eve shifted slightly, trying to make sense of what Jake was saying, but still completely confused.
“Why would you possibly think that I am only interested in you as a friend? Especially after last night? I thought I made my feelings pretty clear.” Jake peered into Eve’s eyes, searching for anything that would explain where this all went wrong.
“You did make it clear last night, Jake,” Eve stated, “as soon as things became intimate— you left. It was pretty evident you weren’t interested in being with me in that way.”
The room went still, neither of them spoke for a moment. Jake internalized what Eve had said, and realized just how she could have perceived something that was in direct contradiction to what he had felt. Raising his head, he placed his hand at the back of her neck and sighed loudly.
“I am so sorry if I gave you that impression. It was the farthest thing from my mind, I can assure you. I can’t do the friends-with-benefits thing either and that’s why I left. I didn’t want you to think I was just interested in getting you into bed. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I am very interested in getting you into bed,” he ran his hand through his hair and inhaled deeply, “but I didn’t want you to think I was taking advantage of you. I like you. I really like you. And if I could figure out how to take all my vacation time right now, I would spend every minute of the next three weeks with you.”
Born and raised in the Rocky Mountains, A.L. Parks has spent the last 25 years moving all over the United States. Married to the Navy – well a man in the Navy – Parks has lived in various places throughout the United States. Now she resides in the Washington D.C area, and loves every minute. She has four children, and one spoiled German Shepard.
2013 marked her debut in publishing. Her first novel, Strangers, released on her 45th birthday. She was amazed at how many people fell in love with a story about two people dealing with grief, and finding love again. Abby and Bryce were the perfect couple to introduce Parks as an up-and-coming author.
Her second novel, The Return, released in December 2013. A wonderful Christmas romance, it is the first book in the Return To Me series.