Book Blitz: The Ex Trials by Heather Topham Wood #Giveaway @woodtop255 @bookenthupromo

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The Ex Trials FINAL eBook

Book Title: The Ex Trials
Author: Heather Topham Wood
Genre: New Adult
Release Date: August 31, 2015
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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Book Blurb

One dream vacation in paradise.
One co-ed bachelor and bachelorette party.
One week marooned with my ex.

Six months ago, Casey Silvers ended her scorching romance with sexy rocker Cole Caldwell. None of her friends know the true reason behind her sudden change of heart. Despite her claim of their chemistry fizzling out, her feelings for Cole had never gone away.

After receiving the invitation to her best friend’s co-ed bachelor and bachelorette getaway, Casey knows she must once again face Cole. For one week, she’ll be forced to party alongside the man who has come to despise her. The tropical cruise is meant to be a trip to paradise, but Casey is certain it will turn out to be a vacation from hell.

But as the ship leaves port, past secrets are revealed—secrets that could change the fate of Casey’s romance with Cole. With forces keeping them together, Cole and Casey soon discover that the passion between them has yet to extinguish.

***Standalone New Adult Romance-Ages 17+ Due to Strong Language and Sexual Situations***

excerpt

If only I could enjoy paradise with Cole as my boyfriend. Evading him was easier because being reminded of how magnetic I found him was unadulterated torture. We were bad for each other, but that didn’t make me want him any less.

“I don’t want this whole week to be uncomfortable and weird,” he finally said without looking in my direction. “I’ve had a constipated feeling falling me around since the second I got to the airport.” He let out a strangled laugh although his expression remained humorless. “I thought I could see you again and it wouldn’t be a big deal. But I was wrong.”

“Why did you come? You know Autumn is my best friend,” I pointed out. Maybe I had wronged him, but he had titanium balls coming on the cruise. Blake may have invited him, but he could have refused.

“Because I hate this. My brother is crazy in love with one of your best friends and every time she’s over I have to hear Casey this and Casey that. I can’t even hear your name without breaking out into a cold sweat.” His voice was fierce and had a sobering effect on me. Cole wasn’t exactly known for his intensity. He was usually just as big of a wiseass as his twin. I’d seen a more complex side of him while we dated, but we still spent a lot of downtime riffing playfully on one another. He continued, “Things didn’t work out for us. Maybe we were meant to crash and burn from the beginning. I think we’re too much alike. Our personalities only let us have intense flings that can’t last.”

His words burned my brain and my heart. I hated that was his summation on what we had. It was my fault he felt the way he did. I violated his trust and destroyed his faith in me. Did I expect him to still consider what we had as special?

“I’m sorry,” I managed. “I know you probably don’t believe me, but I am so sorry that things turned out the way they did—”

His cheeks reddened and I could instantly tell he hated the pity in my tone. Although I was sincere, Cole would think I was patronizing him. “It’s over and like I said, that’s fine. It would’ve never worked anyway. But I do want us to be friends. I don’t want it to be weird when ever we’re in the same room together.”

“I want that too,” I said hoarsely.

He nodded although his tone remained dry and unfriendly. “You should have fun on the vacation. And if you want to hook up with someone, don’t feel awkward about it… I’m not planning to be a saint on the trip either.”

I could see the knife he had just used to cut out my heart—the serrated edges dripping with fresh blood. Hope had damned me to my own personal hell. Because as tough as I had played it for my friends’ benefits, the god’s honest truth was I had wished for him to see me and feel something again. Like he would look into my eyes and see directly into my heart.

His dangling of our renewed friendship was only a ruse. This was his true purpose. He wanted me to know I’d have to bear witness to him fucking whomever he wanted on vacation. I’d hurt him and he was outlining his plans for revenge against me. For the next seven days, I’d have my heart stomped on each time I saw him with another girl.

“Thanks, but I’ll pass,” I said lifting up my chin. I was certainly at fault for our breakup, but I had to draw the line somewhere. I made mistakes, but I punished myself enough for the both of us.

He frowned. “You pass on what?”

“Your offer of being friends. I considered what you could add to my life as a friend and I’m politely declining,” I said and began to turn away. There had been safety in the fog; why was I allowing his words to penetrate?

His fingers wrapped lightly around my wrist and I stilled. Although I was trying to leave with my dignity intact, I had to admit his hand felt good against my skin. Besides playing guitar, Cole was a union steelworker. The combination left his hands rough and callused. There was something so intoxicating about how masculine his hands felt when he grasped at my bare skin.

“Casey, you were the one who said months ago that neither of us were ready for a commitment. I’m not being an asshole here. I could’ve told everyone about why we broke up, but I didn’t. I let them assume you just wanted to walk away and I didn’t stop you.”

I patted his shoulder heartily. “Thanks for being so grown up about it, Cole. I didn’t know you had it in you.”

He folded his arms across his chest and looked me up and down. I didn’t like the smug look on his face as he caught my eye. His face and posture reminded me of the arrogance that had withered away once we became serious about one another. “Okay, Casey. Game on.”

“What?”

His eyes were unreadable. “I figured if we were friends, we could show each other some respect. Not rub any hookups in the other person’s face. But since you so rudely swatted away my outreached hand—”

I rolled my eyes. “Were you this annoying when we dated? Because I’m surprised we lasted as long as we did.”

He leaned down and whispered in a low rumble, “You still want me. I know you. I know you. I remember how you get defensive when you want to hide what you’re feeling. I get that your pride will keep you from telling me the truth about what really happened between us. And I know that by the time this boat docks back in port, you’ll be in my bed, asking for a another chance.”

I flushed and said in an affronted voice, “In your dreams, creep.”

kisses. We didn’t specify where those kisses would be,” he said in a playful tone.

Teasers

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Meet the Author

Heather Topham Wood’s obsession with novels began in childhood while growing up in a shore town in New Jersey. Writing since her teens, she recently returned to penning novels after a successful career as a freelance writer. She’s the author of the paranormal romance Second Sight and The Dark Dreamer series and the standalones Falling for Autumn, Pretending Hearts, The Ex Trials and The Disappearing Girl.

Heather graduated from the College of New Jersey in 2005 and holds a bachelor’s degree in English. Her freelance work has appeared in publications such as USA Today, Livestrong.com, Outlook by the Bay and Step in Style magazine. She resides in Trenton, New Jersey with her husband and two sons. Besides writing, Heather is a pop culture fanatic and has an obsession with supernatural novels and TV shows.

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BEPRectangleI love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl

Release Blast: THE BILLIONAIRE’S PASSIONATE REVENGE by Jennifer St. George #Giveaway

Enter to Win a 

Gifted Ebook Copy of 

THE BILLIONAIRE’S PURSUIT OF LOVE (Book #1)

 

THE BILLIONAIRE’S PASSIONATE REVENGE
Billionaire Romance #3
Jennifer St. George
Releasing Sept 15th, 2015
Penguin Books Australia
Heiress
Lady Zara Ravensdale and Xavier Hunt, the gardener’s son, were once
inseparable. But before their romance had a chance to bloom, it was crushed by
scandal and betrayal.
Xavier is now an international celebrity and sexier than sin while Zara is deep
in debt, running Ravensdale Manor as an upmarket hotel to make ends meet.
Unable to forget the past, Xavier returns to the manor, determined to exact his
revenge on the Ravensdale family – once and for all.

Together again, passions reignite and the old chemistry becomes impossible to
ignore. But Xavier and Zara are both keeping secrets and neither can forget
their troubled history. Will they be able to uncover the truth of that night or
will Xavier’s need for revenge tear them apart forever?

The Billionaire’s Passionate Revenge is the third book in the Billionaire
series by bestselling romance author, Jennifer St George. If you love
billionaire romance, don’t miss this passionate read!

 

Excerpt-Banner

 

‘I usually find I’m greeted with, “Good morning, Mr Hunt. May I take your bags, Mr Hunt?” Or, “Nice to see you back. I hope you enjoy your stay . . . Mr Hunt.”’

What was he saying? She opened her mouth to speak but her mind raced with so many memories. She’d often wondered what would happen if they ever came face-to-face. She’d run the scenario in her head countless times. In each of her mental role-plays she’d remained cool and indifferent, not speechless and stupid.

‘What . . . What are you doing here?’ she managed, unable to keep the abject shock from her voice. She knew from occasionally reading about him online that he spent most of his time in the US, where he’d made his billion-dollar fortune.

‘No. I’ve never been greeted with that one.’ His tone was flippant, as though they didn’t have years of tortured history between them. He reached into the cab of his van and pulled out a worn brown leather satchel and slung it over his shoulder. He walked toward the pillared entrance of the manor.

He moved as though the whole world was watching and he didn’t give a damn. So confident and forceful. His simple clothes belied the extraordinary fame of the man.

Of course she’d seen him on his world-famous gardening show and that one time across a crowded room, but . . . But he was nothing like the lanky teenager who’d left Ravensdale in a police van, screaming for revenge.

‘Xavier, wait.’ She raced after him. This was a disaster. Xavier arriving when her first guest was due. She blocked his path. ‘What are you doing here?’ She glanced over her shoulder down the drive. ‘It’s . . . Well, I’ve got someone arriving. Someone is coming to stay. A guest. An important guest.’ God, she was babbling. She took a deep breath. ‘Could you please move the truck and wait for me in the kitchen?’

‘Hmm.’ He stepped in close. She could smell him. Even after all these years, that intoxicating aroma was the same . . . raw masculinity, earthiness and sunshine. Her body flushed with heat. She sucked in a breath, stunned he still had the power to make her heart flutter.

‘Did losing all the family money knock out some of your mental faculties, Zara?’ He tapped her forehead with his fingertips.

She jerked back. ‘I beg your pardon.’ For a man who’d dropped in unannounced he was certainly taking a lot of liberties, even if he had once called Ravensdale home.

His look seemed to ask: Are you the world’s greatest imbecile?

‘I’m the guest,’ he said slowly, as though speaking to someone with limited intelligence.

The muscles in her back and neck pulled rigid. Her hand landed heavily on her breastbone. ‘You . . . You can’t be.’ Xavier would never willingly come back here. He’d made that clearer than the finest Bohemian crystal all those years ago.

‘Why?’ He hitched an eyebrow. ‘Do you have a blue-bloods only policy?’ His words struck like a stinging slap in the cheek.

‘You know I’m not like that.’

Bringing his face down, inches from her own, his hypnotic eyes pinned her to the spot. She resisted the urge to step away, and held her breath. She didn’t want to reveal how his presence sent a quiver of fear up her spine.

‘You know, Zara,’ his voice was low and deliberate, ‘there was a time when I thought I knew everything there was to know about you. That we had trust and a bond so strong, nothing in the world could break it.’ The weight of his words seemed to drive her into the ground. ‘But I was wrong. My time at Ravensdale Manor, and knowing people like you, taught me a valuable life lesson.’

He walked toward the house then stopped, turned slightly and tossed her his keys.

‘Bags are in the back.’ His tone and body language communicated everything.

You are nothing and no one to me.

 
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Jennifer St George is a best-selling romance author whose sexy stories feature courageous, career-minded heroines and strong heroes in glamorous international settings. She has six books published with Penguin Book’s digital-first imprint, Destiny Romance. Jennifer spent the first 25 years of her career in the corporate world travelling the globe. Many of the exotic locations she’s visited feature in her stories. Jennifer now lives in gorgeous Byron Bay, Australia and writes to the sound of the waves with a view of the beach.

 

 I love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl

Cover Reveal:Luminoso by SJ Molloy #Giveaway @AUTHORSJMOLLOY @BookEnthuPromo

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Cover Reveal

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Book Title: Luminoso
Author: SJ Molloy
Genre: Erotic romance suspence
Release Date: October 27th
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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Book Blurb

Luminoso
# Book 4 of The Luminara Series.

This is the ultimate love story. This is the most tragic love story.

Heart and soul.
His light.
Our light.
Luminoso.

Lexi’s tormentor and ghost of her past is back—with a vengeance. Michael Parks won’t stop until he lures the pretty little lamb to his merciless slaughter. He’s looking for justice and will show her no mercy in his twisted, brutal plan for revenge.

She can run and play house, but she can’t hide forever. Her fate is sealed, and Michael will ensure she suffers a tragic and horrific death.
Lexi will pay dearly for her sins.

***
When Lucca discovers Lexi’s stepbrother has skipped Australian parole and is in Scotland, taunting her and leaving signs, he impulsively takes Lexi and her mum Grace back to Tuscany.
Lucca vows to protect them both, taking extreme measures to ensure their safety while trying hard to provide a stable and positive life for them both.

They break. He breaks.

Between running his successful empire, Osurac Industries, and keeping everyone back home in Scotland safe until Michael has been apprehended, Lucca needs to love his dolcezza like never before—because she’s never needed him more than she does right now.

Recently discovering Lexi’s pregnant only makes Lucca more possessive and attentive, especially as Lexi doesn’t have the easiest pregnancy. He’ll go far and beyond to care for her, worship her, and make her happy. But life won’t be simple. Another unravelling twist in the plot will define their future. Forever.

Life in Lucca’s Tuscan farmhouse will be challenging, testing Lexi, Lucca, and Grace while Michael hides from the police and special forces.

Uncertainty. Paranoia. Unwanted stress.

Not only will their lives be threatened, but their private life will be compromised as the ruthless press digs into Lexi and Grace’s past. After a shocking scandal is leaked, creating a worldwide frenzy, Lucca and Lexi are exposed and under intense scrutiny.

Lucca will do whatever it takes to respect his girl’s privacy and safeguard her heart. Lucca thinks he knows what’s best for Lexi, but a new revelation ignites a fire inside her he can’t control.

Tragedy and a broken heart gives Lexi new strength and a brand-new backbone. She must take the reins. Knowing what she needs to do, and demanding his support, she pushes him to his limits.

In an explosive and heart-stopping turn of events, you will be shocked beyond belief.

Can Lucca keep Lexi safe?

Will she fight and face her demons, or surrender to the darkness once more?

Only Lucca’s lust, love, and light will give her strength, but is it enough?

You think you’ve read it all … you haven’t.

excerpt

Promise.

A promise is a promise.

He always says the most positive things when I need to hear them. Lucca slides down the bed, kisses our tiny baby bump, and then places his cheek flat on my stomach while his fingers tenderly stroke my navel. My hands roam in his hair while my fingers twirl and entwine through his shaggy curls.

“Your mamma thinks she is the only one scared of being a parent. Well my little one, if Papa is honest, then so am I. I have never done this before either, and your mamma and I have a lot of learning to do together, so you need to be patient with us. I am sure your papa will get lots of things wrong. But Il mio piccolo, you need to know we both love you very much and we might make mistakes sometimes, but we love you unconditionally.”

He speaks very naturally to our small baby as if it’s already born; his hot breath whishing across my stomach causing sweet ripples deep inside me. It’s so lovable, honest, and cute that my heart almost jolts with a fast deep thud.

“To the moon and back,” I whisper with a smile repeating the words that my grandpa always says to me.

“To the moon and back,” he repeats.

“We both love you and cannot wait to meet you, but we are both scared Il mio piccolo. You need to be a good bambino for papa and let Mamma rest because she is feeling sick just now and I need to make sure Mamma feels better.” He places a lasting kiss on my tummy before sliding up the bed, leaning over me and taking my face in his hands.

Could I love this man anymore?

His words have touched me in a way that melts my heart and steals my breath. I never thought in a million years that Lucca would be nervous about being a parent. He has always appeared confidant, assured, and he’s great with his nieces and nephews. Family is very important to him because he has such a big family of his own and I assumed because he’s been around kids that he knows what he’s doing. It’s refreshing to know he also questions his parenting skills to some extent. It eases some of my uncertainties to know it’s not just me who has doubts.

“You’re so sweet, Romeo. I love you. That was a really nice thing to say. I never thought you were even remotely nervous about being a daddy. I always thought because you wanted kids so badly that you would know what you’re doing and just take it in your stride,” I say stroking his shoulder and arm before kissing his shoulder.

“Si, I do want kids badly with you and I am looking forward to our next chapter together, but I also have my own worries and doubts about being a papa. I think most men do and do not like to admit it. My worries will be slightly different to yours because you are still feeling sick and you have emotional and hormonal things to consider, but I worry just the same. Please know you are doing a wonderful job of looking after our child and I know you question that, but trust me, you are doing just great.” He lies down on his side and wraps his arm around me, attentively stroking my hair.

“Thank you. I um … I just worry that my anxiety might cause the baby distress. I do think my worries would outnumber yours, Lucca, but it is kind of you to try and make me feel better. It’s different for a mother, it’s not just the pregnancy, it is everything that comes with pregnancy and afterwards, and this is me we are talking about,” I say blithely wrinkling my nose then chew the inside of my cheek. I really want to say, “this is me – a nervous broken mess of a woman.”

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Meet the Author

sj molloy

SJ Molloy, British Author of ‘The Luminara Series’ was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. As a young child, her family moved and raised her in Lanarkshire, Scotland where she currently resides with her husband, two daughters and her energetic, hyperactive loving gun dog who is utterly spoiled.

When she is not writing or reading, spending time with family and friends or exercising and walking her dog, SJ loves all things practical and creative. Dancing, music, cooking, travelling, good food and wine and painting are her favourite past times along with laughter, lots and lots of laughter.

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I love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl

Blog Tour: MARRIAGE UNDER FIRE by Jacki Delecki #Giveaway @Tastybooktours @jackidelecki

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Grayce Walters Series Prize Pack

 

MARRIAGE UNDER FIRE
The Grayce Walters Series #4
Jacki Delecki
Released Sept 12th, 2015

Maddy Jeffers has never failed as a Marine, but she is about to face the ultimate challenge of her career. Ordered to infiltrate a Seattle terrorist cell, she must go undercover married to Hunter Hines. The terrorist cell might not intimidate the seasoned soldier, but pretending to be a wife to the rugged, macho Marine just might be the most demanding and daunting mission she’s faced.

Hunter, a career Marine, has devoted his life to duty and discipline. Yet being in constant proximity with the beguiling blond Maddy, is making it impossible to fight his need for his pretend wife. When Maddy’s life is threatened, protecting her becomes the only mission that matters. And Hunter will break all the rules to save her.

As the danger heats up around these two veteran heroes, they discover their shared bonds of love and duty.

 

Excerpt-Banner

 

Maddy Jeffers always chose daring over caution.

With her pelvis thrust forward by her three-inch, knockoff designer heels, she countered her absurd posture by throwing back her shoulders. Since she was on the carpet, she might as well make it a Hollywood red carpet. Placing each foot very firmly and carefully, she managed to avoid teetering and made her way down the silent, sterile hallway of Seattle’s Henry Jackson Federal Building. The gunmetal gray walls and the Pine-Sol smell of a moldering, uncaring bureaucracy took her right back to her years as a foster child—in another government building, her future in question again.

Instructed to report out of uniform, she had been in a major quandary. Should she arrive dressed as the ecoterrorist she’d been posing as during her last undercover assignment to make it easier for them to reprimand her? Or should she look like any other office worker?

Major Hunter Hines, her partner on the assignment, had texted her to report at 20:00 to JFB.

The man could have given her a heads-up about what she faced; Marines took care of their own. Of course, Major Hunter Hines wouldn’t allow anything like human emotions or the dangers of that particular assignment to affect his report.

Speak of the devil, there was Hunter, waiting in front of the glass door to the FBI office. She surreptitiously dried her sweaty palms on her tight black dress and added a swagger to her slow, agonizing walk. No way would she admit, even under the threat of torture, that her killer shoes were killing her.

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Descended from a long line of storytellers, Jacki spins adventures filled with mystery, healing and romance. Jacki’s love affair with the arts began at a young age and inspired her to train as a jazz singer and dancer. She has performed many acting roles with the Seattle Opera Company and the Pacific Northwest Ballet. Her travels to London and Paris ignited a deep-seated passion to write A Code of Love, a romantic mystery set in the Regency era. Jacki is certain she spent at least one lifetime dancing in the Moulin Rouge.

Although writing now fills most of her days, she continues to volunteer with Seattle’s Ballet and Opera companies, as well as leading children’s tours of Pike Street Market. Her volunteer work with Seattle’s homeless shelters influenced one of her main characters in An Inner Fire. Jacki’s two Golden Labs, Gus and Talley, are her constant companions. Their years of devotion and intuition inspired her to write both dogs as heroes in A Code of Love. A geek at heart, Jacki loves superhero movies—a hero’s battle against insurmountable odds. Fortunately, her heroines don’t have to wear a unitard to fight injustice and battle for the underdog. Jacki’s extraordinary heroines love and heal. Visit www.JackiDelecki.com for more information.

 

Start the Series from the beginning
AN INNER FIRE
 
WOMEN UNDER FIRE
 
MEN UNDER FIRE

I love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl

Cover Reveal: Almost Perfect by Jenny Siegel

 

 

Title:   Almost Perfect: A Good Girl Novel
 
Author:   Jenny Siegel
 
Genre:   Contemporary Romance
 
Release Date:   October 6, 2015

 
 
~ Synopsis ~
 
For the last three months, Charlie has worked hard to
reinvent herself as a good girl. Now living with her boyfriend Dominic,
everything is perfect.
 
Almost.
 
Charlie thought she had escaped her past, but as more
photographs surface, she wonders if it has finally caught up with her? Despite
Dominic’s assurances that nothing can come between them; the truth isn’t easy
to accept when it’s staring you in the face. Especially when Charlie realizes
there might be more to the photos than someone trying to remind her of a life
she’d rather forget.
 
Can she make peace with her past or will it destroy her
present?
 
Being the good girl just got dangerous. 

 

I love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl

Blog Tour: Sit! Stay! Speak! by Annie England Noblin #giveaway @Tastybooktours @aenoblin

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Print Copy of SIT! STAY! SPEAK!

(US Only)

 

SIT! STAY! SPEAK!
A Novel
Annie England Noblin
Released Sept 9th, 2015
William Morrow

 

Echoing the novels of Mary Alice Monroe, Allie Larkin, and Holly Robinson, this charming debut novel tells the unforgettable story of a rescue dog that helps a struggling young outsider make peace with the past.

Addie Andrews is living a life interrupted. Tragedy sent her fleeing from Chicago to the shelter of an unexpected inheritance—her beloved aunt’s somewhat dilapidated home in Eunice, Arkansas, population very tiny. There she reconnects with some of her most cherished childhood memories. If only they didn’t make her feel so much!

People say nothing happens in small towns, but Addie quickly learns better. She’s got an elderly next door neighbor who perplexingly dances outside in his underwear, a house needing more work than she has money, a best friend whose son uncannily predicts the weather, and a local drug dealer holding a massive grudge against her.

Most surprising of all, she’s got a dog. But not any dog, but a bedraggled puppy she discovered abandoned, lost, and in desperate need of love. Kind of like Addie herself. She’d come to Eunice hoping to hide from the world, but soon she discovers that perhaps she’s finding the way back—to living, laughing, and loving once more.

Excerpt-Banner

She sighed and pushed her blond hair off her neck, piling it high on top of her head. Her thoughts went back to Chicago. To Jonah. To what life had been like before she’d inherited a house that needed more work than she had money. Jonah would have liked this house, she thought. Addie knew that if he were here, they would have stayed in town after the funeral. Jonah would have picked through each piece of furniture, each knickknack. He would have asked for stories about each one, stories Addie had long forgotten.

She rested her head against the coffee table. It had a glass top, something her aunt had brought all the way down here from Chicago. It wasn’t worth much, as far as Addie could tell, but her aunt loved it and stuck cards from relatives underneath the glass. Each time Aunt Tilda had a visitor, she’d tell them about whichever relative happened to be resting underneath that visitor’s coffee mug. Today there was no coffee, and there were no visitors. There was no Jonah. Addie let her hair fall back down onto her sticky neck and said out loud to no one, “I’ve got to get out of here for a while.”

The Mississippi River in Eunice, Arkansas, looked nothing like it had when she’d crossed the bridge in Memphis. It was smaller, tranquil almost. Addie stood with her toes touching the water. She hadn’t been down to the levee since the last time she’d visited Eunice. Even this close to the water, it was hot outside. She found herself wishing she’d just stayed inside with all the unopened boxes and dusty furniture—at least there was air-conditioning.

Gazing around, Addie realized that this was no longer the nice, clean picnic area that her aunt had taken her to during her childhood visits. The tables were overgrown with weeds, and there was an obvious odor of trash in the air. This place hadn’t been taken care of in a long time.

Addie bent down to wash out her flip-flops when she heard a noise coming from behind her. She turned around to face a small wooded area. The noise grew louder. It sounded like a whimpering, but all she saw were bushes. She shoved her feet into her shoes and walked over to the direction of the noise. She pushed her way into the first set of bushes, where a thin layer of trash covered the ground. Off to one side there was a large, black trash bag.

The trash bag was moving. Addie crept closer to the bag. She bent down and touched the plastic. It had been tied in a tight knot. Digging her fingers into the plastic, Addie ripped the bag wide open. The object in the bag stirred, whimpering slightly. It lifted its head and tried to move, but failed. It was covered in blood and blood-soaked newspaper and dozens of crumpled packages of Marlboro Reds.

Addie was looking at a dog.

 

 
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Annie England Noblin graduated with
an M.A. in Creative Writing from Missouri State University and currently
teaches English for Arkansas State University. Her poetry has been featured in
such publications as the Red Booth Review and the Moon City Review. She lives
with her son, husband, and four rescued bulldogs in the Missouri Ozarks. In
addition to her writing, Noblin started working with rescue organizations
across the country ten years ago, and has never looked back. The work she does
serves as an inspiration in everyday life, as well as in her writing.
 
 

I love this quote, Diana
“I’m wondering what to read next.” — Matilda, Roald Dahl