Book One: Blue Suede Christmas
Tony thought he understood Sydney, but then she dropped the bomb that she wants to end their song writing partnership all because he doesn’t want to make love with her. His parents were best friends who did exactly that, then fought the ten years they stay married, ending in a bitter divorce. Nope, not happening with him and Syd!
But when a snow storm strands them in Christmastown at the haunted Sleigh Bells Inn, Sydney will find her fairy Godmother in the guise of a dead gay Elvis impersonator, but will she end up with a hunka, hunka burnin’ love or only discover she’s staying at heartbreak hotel?
Book Two: Thank You Santa
Baby, it’s cold out there…
Charlaine only has one thought when she first lays eyes on Nathan. Thank you, Santa! That is, until she learns he’s the critic who’ll be reviewing the Inn. Still, it has been a long time… After one sizzling night spent in his arms, she happens to glimpse his review notes. Now she’s seeing red, and it’s not from all the Christmas decorations!
Can a flamboyant ghost bring these two couples together, or will he only make the situation worse?
Two stories from USA Today Bestselling author Karen Kelley that will have you laughing out loud one minute, and fanning yourself in the next. Deemed "Romances Rising Funny Girl" by New York Times bestselling author Sharon Sala.
Please God, I need your help. Tony thinks it would screw up everything if we took our relationship beyond friendship and business partners.
Sydney Newman was thoughtful. Could you even think the word screw when you were praying? She took a deep breath, exhaled and tried again.
Please God, I need your help. Tony thinks it would mess up our relationship if we had sex.
Could she think about sex while praying? She covertly glanced across the seat. Tony’s attention was on the road in front of him and the snow that had gotten heavier by the hour.
Damn, he looked good enough to eat with his thick sandy brown hair and lazy brown eyes that could heat a woman’s blood in record time. Except he’d never really given her that look. But then, he didn’t have to give her that look, she was already horny and it had finally brought out the devil in her.
She was tired of playing it safe. If he wasn’t going to take their relationship to the next level, then she would end it altogether. Why should she suffer alone? She’d take him with her on her pity party trip. Now that she thought about it, he should be the one who suffered the most anyway. It was only fair.
But ending their partnership wasn’t really what she wanted so she faced forward again, closing her eyes. She needed to really concentrate—get serious and try to be a little more pious. She took a deep breath and began again.
I need your help, Lord. Could you please send me a fairy godmother or something? Anyone who will help make Tony see the truth. We could be so good together.
The voice of God! Yes, I’ve run up against every roadblock imaginable but if you could just help me out, I’m sure...
“We’ll have to make a detour. Might not be such a bad thing. The road is getting too treacherous. The snow is coming down so hard I can’t see more than a few feet in front of the car.”
She opened her eyes and frowned. Not God’s voice, only Tony’s, and she was staring at a big orange sign with an arrow pointing toward the right.
Great. Another roadblock in a life littered with them. She hadn’t really thought she was only supposed to pray when she wanted something but it was worth a try. She’d hoped God would look into her heart, though. A little help would’ve been nice.
“Thanks for nothing,” she muttered.
The car skidded. She drew in a sharp breath and grabbed hold of the door. Tony brought it back under control and she breathed a sigh of relief, but she couldn’t help glancing upward.
Nah. She shook her head as she peered out the windshield. He was right. Visibility was terrible. Guilt washed over her. While she’d been lusting after Tony, he’d been trying to maneuver through the large flakes of snow that were coming down harder and faster with each passing minute.
She sat straighter when her eye caught something up ahead. “There’s a sign.” She squinted. “Christmastown.” She couldn’t make out how many miles they still had to go to get there.
"Christmastown?” Tony looked at her, then returned his attention to the road.
“I think that’s what it said. Odd name for a town.”
“Hopefully, they’ll have a vacancy somewhere because it doesn’t look like we’ll be going any farther this afternoon.”
Disappointment filled her. She was ready to get home, feel her mom and dad’s arms wrapped around her...
“You’re going to have to tell our parents we’re ending our business relationship, you know.” His words bounced around the interior of the car.
She could feel the color drain from her face. Her parents and Tony’s mother lived next door to each other and had since Tony was in third grade and she was in kindergarten. Tony’s mother was divorced, but she’d remarried a couple of years later. They’d all become the best of friends.
She pictured the expressions on their moms’ faces. Her mom would be devastated. Tony’s would be so disappointed. She cringed. “You tell them,” she blurted.
“I’m not going to tell them. You tell them. This was your idea, not mine. I was perfectly content to continue writing songs together.” His knuckles turned white as he gripped the steering wheel.
Stubborn man! “I wasn’t. You know darn well you’re attracted to me. Why not at least see if we’re compatible?”
He shook his head. “It wouldn’t work and then where would we be? Look at my parents. They made each other miserable and they’d known each other all through high school. Look at Blake and Miranda...
“They’re not us.”
“Don’t fix it if it isn’t broken.”
Stubborn, stubborn, stubborn! She glared at him, even though he kept his gaze on the road. “Your father has drilled that saying in you. I have news for you, in case you haven’t noticed, it’s broken.” She’d never cared that much for his biological father but she’d kept her opinions to herself.
He glanced her way. “No, it isn’t broken. And you’re biting your nails again. That just goes to show you this isn’t what you want.”
She looked at her jagged fingernails. If she went through with her plans, she probably wouldn’t have any nails by the end of the month. It couldn’t be helped. She’d made up her mind and there was no turning back.
“It’s a bad habit,” she informed him. “It doesn’t mean I want our relationship to stay the same.”
He automatically reached over and pushed a button on the CD player, skipping past the next song, knowing she hated it. Did he even realize how much he knew about her? You’d think they were already married. Except neither one of them was getting laid.
At least she hoped he wasn’t. He might as well suffer right alongside her. Sure, she knew he dated, as did she, but she wasn’t even going to think about Tony having sex. That’s exactly why she had to end their relationship. She was dying a slow, painful death.
“Damn it, Sydney, we’ve worked hard to get to this point in our career and you want to throw it all away. Having sex would ruin everything.”
She raised an eyebrow. “I’ve been told I’m not that bad in bed.”
He grimaced. “That’s not what I meant. I’d rather not talk about sex any more.”
“Why? Do you think I’m still a virgin?” She watched his changing expressions but couldn’t figure out what he was thinking. She couldn’t stop herself from pushing his buttons. “I filled out a quiz once, you know.”
“Yeah. You know, in Cosmo. It was when I was in college. How to find your best sex partner. It turned out to be a guy in my biology class—I think.” She frowned.
“What do you mean—you think? What’d you do? Go to bed with the first man who correctly answered multiple-choice questions.
Eight correct answers and he gets to jump your bones.”
“I meant, I think I had the right guy.”
He raised his eyebrows so she continued.
“I was depressed.”
“What’s that have to do with anything?”
Men. They just didn’t understand PMS. In that department, Tony was just like all the rest. “I was eating chocolate.” He still looked confused. “It was hot outside.” Still no light coming on upstairs. “The chocolate was melting and I dropped some on the page.”
“And that’s how you lost your virginity?” His frown deepened into furrows across his forehead.
She shook her head. “No, that was in college, during my analytical period. I thought I could find the right man by process of elimination. I actually lost my virginity my junior year in high school. Bobby Adams.” She sighed. Now he’d been a wild child.
“Bobby Adams! Were you insane or what?”
She straightened in her seat. “Just because he didn’t play football doesn’t mean he was a bad person.”
“He had a motorcycle. The guy was strange.”
Her smile was secretive. She’d loved his motorcycle and his black leather jacket and the way he’d wrapped his arms around her and pulled her tight against him. But then she’d wised up and realized he wasn’t the brightest bulb in the string.
“Just how many guys have you been with?”
One eyebrow shot upward. “I’ll show you my list if you’ll show me yours.”
She knew he’d been with girls—women, but it was an unwritten law they didn’t speak about that part of their lives as they searched for their soul mates.
Somewhere during her search, she realized it was Tony who made her heart beat faster, made her skin go from cold to hot with just a casual touch. She’d fallen in love with him.
Tony hadn’t seen the wisdom of her enlightenment. At least, not yet. There was a good chance he might never see it. If that was the case, they were going to end up very lonely people.
She turned her gaze out the window and stared at the mountains of snow. Cold and lonely.
Tony cast a quick glance in Sydney’s direction. She looked forlorn as she stared out the window. Damn it, he couldn’t take away her pain this time. It just wasn’t possible.
He gripped the steering wheel a little tighter. Not only because of the icy conditions but because he wanted to throttle her.
She’d dropped her bomb a couple of weeks ago when she told him she was ending their song writing partnership. Since then he hadn’t written a thing. All the words that had been there just dried up. What the hell was she thinking?
That was the problem, she wasn’t thinking. It wasn’t the first time. She’d have to put harebrained ideas on her résumé. In love with him? Sydney was only going through another one of her phases. He cared for her sure, but loving her would be a disaster.
For just a moment he envisioned Sydney coming toward him in a flimsy negligee. Her waist-length auburn hair curling around a breast...
His pulse skipped a beat. His palms began to sweat.