Release date: July 6, 2015
As a combat photographer, Analise Thordarson has seen things through her lens that no one should. But it’s the personal losses that brought her home to Canada and her widowed grandfather, whose stables are facing foreclosure.
Hotshot corporate lawyer Erik Sigurdson breezes into town with two things on his agenda: to avenge his sister’s death and survive a two-week family reunion. Reuniting with his ex, Analise, is not part of the plan, but she just might be his salvation.
If she’ll pretend to be his fiancée, he’ll lend her the money to pay off her grandfather’s debts. But when their fake engagement is complicated by a very real pregnancy, Analise and Erik must sort out just who is using whom and if this faux relationship could lead to a real future.
by Alexia Adams
Alexia Adams lives on the west coast of Canada with her husband and four children and dreams of a world without housework. Find her at www.alexia-adams.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter @AlexiaAdamsAuth.
An excerpt from Her Faux Fiancé:
Erik sped down the highway on autopilot. After 120 kilometers of farmers’ fields, there wasn’t much to attract his attention. His right foot eased off the accelerator as he approached the town limits. He slowed even more when he saw a silver SUV stopped in front of the welcome sign. His mind absently registered the rental sticker on the vehicle. Must be a lost tourist. Although there weren’t many visitors who bothered to come this deep into the Canadian prairie.
An urbanite for the past decade, his every-man-for-himself thinking told him to keep driving. Another fifteen minutes and he’d be at his grandparents’ farm. Quarter of an hour and he could relax with a beer after the two-day drive from Toronto.
The prairie boy in him, however, wouldn’t let him drive past. “Help a neighbor in need” had been drummed into him for too long to ignore. Perhaps they’d run out of gas, underestimating the distance between towns. He pulled up behind the vehicle and shut off his own engine.
He expected the SUV’s occupant to emerge from the vehicle, but when no one appeared, he hesitated. Maybe they were sick. Erik glanced at his cell phone. No service. If they were ill, he’d have to drive them to the hospital himself. He grabbed the mini first-aid kit from the glove box and raced over to the driver’s-side window. A petite woman sat there with her head on the steering wheel. When she didn’t notice him, he rapped on the window.
She leapt in her seat and screamed. Damn, he was supposed to be helping. If she wasn’t having a heart attack before, she might be now. Regaining her composure, she turned the key in the ignition and then lowered the window.
“I’m sorry, miss. I didn’t mean to frighten you … ”
Blue-green eyes met his, and his heart started to pound. He glanced at his chest, sure she could see his reaction. The one person he thought he’d never see again. Of all the roads in all the world, why did she have to break down on this one?
“Analise?” Incredulity made his voice rise two octaves. He cleared his throat.
She blinked twice, a blank look on her face. What seemed an eternity later a small smile played about her lips, as though unsure what it was doing there. “Hello, Erik.”
Two words erased ten years. He was twenty-one again, in lust with his sister’s best friend. Then she’d run from him when he needed her most and … the illusion of love had been shattered. What the hell was she doing here now? A death had made her flee, another must have brought her back.
“I was sorry to hear about your grandmother.”
“Thank you.” A tear fell from her eye before she wiped the heel of her hand across her cheek. It was both surprising and uncomfortable. She leaned across and retrieved a tissue from her handbag, and he took a moment to check out the woman in front of him. Because that’s what she was now, a woman. The girl he’d known all those years ago was gone. The long, black hair that had lured his hands to run through its silky softness had been cropped short. Now, it stood off her scalp in spikes, daring anyone to come near. Her full, luscious lips that had beckoned his kisses were chapped, and she bit her lower one as she wiped her nose.
But those eyes. They were still the same mesmerizing aqua that called to him to lose himself in their depths, the color enhanced now by a sheen of unshed tears.
A ray of sunlight glimmered on the mountain of diamond on her left hand. Erik’s heart constricted before he had time to reason with it. It’d been ten years, for God’s sake.