Release date: March 23, 2015
The man with allergies never gets the girl, at least according to the movies—and Portland restaurateur Ian Zamora wants to be the guy who gets the girl. So to rid himself of the sensitivities brought on by his sometimes-girlfriend’s cat, he makes an appointment with allergist Petra Lale. But he suddenly finds himself acutely attracted to the very woman who is supposed to be helping him take care of his problem.
Petra’s intrigued by Ian’s quiet strength and sexy body, but her solo practice is new and struggling. She can’t afford to compromise her ethics—or risk her medical license—by dating a patient. Falling in love certainly wasn’t this doctor’s order. She tries to stay away from Ian, but fate, and her weak willpower, keep bringing them back together.
Do two career-driven people with inexperienced hearts stand a chance of finding the right prescription for love?
by Ruby Lang
Ruby Lang is prim and bespectacled. She writes non-fiction under her real name, Mindy Hung. She can often be spotted practicing pratfalls on the streets of New York with a small child and a medium-sized husband.
An excerpt from Acute Reactions:
Ian called out an irritated “hello,” and stood up. In the restaurant business, you didn’t keep people waiting. There was always something to offer: a glass of wine, a basket of bread, a refolded napkin, new silverware, a lighted candle. Professionals knew how to distract before they struck. He liked to train his wait staff as if they were assassins. Each little gift, each inquiry, each movement was part of a master plan.
Evidently, someone had heard him, though. After a thump and a muffled curse, the doctor finally swept open the door to the inner office. Ian pressed his lips together, ready to face a cranky old woman who didn’t know or care about the state of her waiting room. He was going to march in, get poked, and march out. It would be easy.
A woman strode through and looked right at him.
Wow, he thought for a dazed minute. Wow.
She was definitely not old. In fact, she looked a lot younger than his thirty-two years, a fact emphasized by her elfin features, her pointy little nose, tawny skin, and short, dark hair. He shook his head to clear his addled brain. This small, vivacious woman with the sharp gray eyes was the doctor, he reminded himself. Suddenly, the thought of receiving a thousand hurts from her hands was nothing compared to the way her eyes flashed when she caught sight of him.
Then he remembered. He was beginning something meaningful with a great, wonderful woman. He certainly wasn’t attracted in any way to a disorganized, jumpy-looking allergist—his doctor, for heaven’s sake. He was here for shots to smooth his way to move in with his girlfriend and her damned cat and live happily ever after. His time in this office was sure to be unpleasant, and full of stabbing and bleeding and itching. As she approached, he told himself that Dr. Lale smelled nothing like baked goods. She probably had chilly fingers and cleaned her skin with alcohol swabs. She probably wore latex gloves to bed.
Dammit, he was not picturing the allergist’s lithe little body in bed, was he?
Eyes on the prize, he reminded himself. Eyes on the prize.
He thought of his plans for the future and gave the doctor a dark glower for making him forget.