An ancient curse has kept astrologer Brooke Howe from finding true love until she crosses paths with a sexy-as-sin chef who may hold the key to changing her destiny.
Welcome to one of the March 6th stops on the blog tour for After Midnight by Shari Nichols with Bewitching Book Tours (schedule linked.) Be sure to follow the rest of the tour for spotlights, reviews, exclusive content, and a giveaway! More on that at the end of this post.
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About the Book
Ravens Hollow Coven Book Four
by Shari Nichols
Published 7 February 2023
City Owl Press
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Page Count: 160
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An ancient curse has prevented astrologer Brooke Howe from finding true love. She hides her longing by matching others, with the hope of someday changing her fate. When Nico Denopoulos, the gorgeous younger brother of a friend, struts into her shop seeking a soulmate, she’s immediately drawn to his magnetic presence and his romantic heart. She can’t deny the intense sensation that she knows the sexy-as- sin chef, but can’t figure out why.
An ugly divorce has kept Nico laser-focused on the opening of his new restaurant. He’s been single for years, but now loneliness has crept into the cracks of his heart. Fearing that he‘s grown bitter, he has high hopes that Brooke can help him with his problem, except for one thing— the more time he spends with her, the more he wants her—in every possible way.
As much as Brooke wants to believe Nico is the real deal, she fears that when the seasons change, so will his feelings. She’s terrified of falling for him, and despite her best efforts to resist him, they’re inextricably drawn together. She can’t help but wonder if he may hold the secret to reversing the curse and changing her destiny. A secret from their shared past life will either bring them closer, or tear them apart forever.
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“Do you remember when you asked me what my favorite color was?”
The vibration of Nico’s voice made Brooke ache all over. She nodded and gulped her wine, catching a slight buzz. “Aries typically favor red.”
“But I chose purple for the color of the dress you wore at the wedding.”
A surge of heat spread from her cheeks to her neck. His sweet words blew through the last of her defenses. “You remember the color of my dress?”
“I remember a lot of things, tiny details about people that interest me.” Their gazes locked, and she couldn’t look away from the heat and hunger burning in his eyes.
“I…didn’t know. You never said anything.” Brooke stared at his lips as he lifted his glass. They were full and sensual, perfect for kissing.
“I heard you were taken, and I didn’t want to be a jerk.” The deep timber of his voice slid into her blood, igniting her desire.
“I was, but we broke up.” When the season changed, so did his feelings. And like all the others, she never heard from him again. Another ghost situation. She wondered why she even bothered to date anymore, but then loneliness would creep in through the cracks of her heart, and she’d dive in again.
“I’m sorry, but the way I see it, this is my lucky day. The truth is I’ve been thinking about you for months now.”
The admission sent her heart galloping. His charisma made him shine brighter than any star in the sky. Why get excited? They’d go out a few times, have mind-blowing sex that would last for days. But then summer would turn to fall, and he’d forget all about her, and she’d be left mending the pieces of her broken heart.
“Seeing you again brought my attraction back full force. Keep your fee, Brooke, and go out with me.”
A thrilling sensation moved through her, but she ignored it and pushed on. “I’m flattered, believe me, but I can’t. I don’t date my clients. It’s a strict rule of mine.”
“Technically, I was only a client for about five minutes.” His phone beeped. He glanced at the screen and muttered a curse. “I’m sorry. I have to go put some fires out at the restaurant.” Nico pulled out his wallet and slapped some cash on the bar. “Let me drop you off and make sure you get home safely.”
“I appreciate it, but it’s out of your way. I’ll be fine.” She didn’t want to be alone with him in a confined space. It would be too tempting.
Nico looked like he wanted to argue, but eventually shook his head. “Let’s get out of here.” He rested his warm hand at the small of her back as they walked to the front doors. Searing heat singed through the thin material of her dress, and she swore her panties caught fire.
They stopped at the revolving double door as well-dressed couples walked in and out of the hotel. He leaned down and kissed her cheek, and a soft hum of electricity sparked between them.
“Think about what I said. I’m not going anywhere, unless I read the situation wrong, and you’re not interested.”
“No…it’s not that. I hope you understand why I can’t go out with you. It may sound silly, but I have rules about these types of things.”
“I respect your decision, but I want you to remember one thing.” He bent his head and whispered close to her ear. “Rules are meant to be broken.”
Her breath lodged in her throat. His words left her flushed and too aware of every scorching inch of him. She watched as he pushed through the doors onto the sidewalk and disappeared through the crowd. Sighing with frustration, tonight she’d nix the bath in favor of an ice-cold shower.
About the Author
Shari Nichols is a multi-award–winning author who grew up in a small town in Connecticut where haunted houses, ghosts and Ouija boards were commonplace, spurring her fascination with all things paranormal. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, getting her MA in Creative writing, doing yoga, or sharing a meal and a glass of wine with her family and friends. She lives in New Jersey with her husband of thirty years.
Shari shakes up the ultimate supernatural cocktail, combining witchcraft, vampires, suspense, and spice into an irresistible paranormal potion.” (InD’Tale Magazine)
“Amazing characters, romance, and suspense. What more can a lover of paranormal romance hope for?” (Linda Tonis-Paranormal Romance Guild.)
Her novels have won the following awards: The Beverley Award, New York Book Festival Honorable Mention, Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice Finalist Best Book, Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice Finalist Best Series, Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice Winner Best Book, Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice Winner Best Series, Golden Leaf Finalist Best Book, Golden Leaf Finalist by a New Jersey Author, HOLT Medallion Finalist. Literary Titan Silver Medal Winner.
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