In the lush heart of Kentucky, horse racing is king, and the Hamilton family is royalty, born to produce champions. Maybe that’s because they understand wildness better than most…Charming, reckless, and restless, youngest brother Alex Hamilton has a reputation for sweet talking his way into any woman’s arms—and failing at anything to do with the family business. So when he commits to managing their new breeding operation, it’s under one condition: he’ll focus on work and nothing else—no distractions, no fun…no women. But just when Alex has promised to keep his hands to himself, sweet, sexy Kate Littleton gallops away with his heart…Kate knows Alex isn’t the long-term type—he proved that in a lot of delicious ways when they first met more than a year ago. But seeing him blazing with new dedication to Hamilton Stables, she can’t deny that he’s miles ahead of any other man who interests her. The attraction between them is electric right out of the gate, but it will take an unexpected loss to put them back in the race and headed for a passionate future together…This book is a standalone novel in a series of standalones.
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Taking his phone from his nightstand, he texted his brother that he’d see him in twenty, then jumped in the shower to wash off his night, his thoughts on the week he had before him. Calls with two stud farms, vet checks on the broodmares, and hopefully a flight out to Ireland later in the week to buy a new stallion.
And he still hadn’t made the decision everyone was waiting on him to make—choosing the studs for the McKendricks’ broodmares. He had two perfectly good options in his stallion barn, ready to go, one already producing champions, so what was the problem? The problem was that he’d long since known that breeding was less science, more art, and he was close to finding the perfect balance. He didn’t want to rush it. The McKendricks’ name held weight in the industry.
So much so that a nod from them would guarantee the farm business for years to come. He couldn’t make a mistake with their horses; anyone’s but theirs. If only he could keep Trip off his back long enough to think without all the doubts clouding his judgment.
Wrapping a towel around his waist, he stepped out of the shower only to hear his cell vibrate against his nightstand again. Sighing, he hit Answer and said, “Give me ten,” before hanging up and walking to his closet, throwing on a pair of jeans and a black T-shirt, and shoving on his boots. Shaking out his hair as a means of styling it, he went to work brushing his teeth, curious how the day had just begun and it was already shit. That didn’t bode well for his week.
Alex ran a hand over his face as he went through the rest of his morning routine—black coffee, notepad, and pencil. He liked the quiet he felt whenever he jotted down notes. That same quiet never came when he entered things into his phone or iPad. So notepad and pencil for him.
Once out in his three-car garage, he eyed his diesel truck, Vette, and Harley, shaking his head a little that his life required him to walk past three manly vehicles. Instead, he hopped into a small golf cart, but at least he was out of his house. Well, technically Trip’s house, but Alex liked to ignore that fact, especially when he was pissed at Trip. And he was heading straight for pissed territory now. It was time he had a conversation with his brother about all the calls—either he trusted him or he didn’t. But the thing was, he might say he didn’t, and then what?
Alex pushed the thought away and set off down the winding road that led to his, Trip’s, and their father’s house, then cut left toward the main barn. The sky was dark in places, light in others, the day unsure of its official starting time, like Mother Nature had hit Snooze.
He knew the feeling.
Mama V greeted him as he stopped the cart by her house. Her gray hair was pulled back into a low bun, like always, her face cheery despite the early hour. Mama V’s kitchen was forever flowing, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, every day. Supposedly, she’d made Alex and Trip’s mother a promise before she died that she would keep the boys fed, and she’d made it her mission to keep the promise.
“How are you this morning, V?” Alex asked as he reached for the protein shake she’d made for him.
“Sky’s up, can’t complain.”
He smiled. “Something tells me my brother wouldn’t agree with you.”
“Ah, he never really has, and I’ve never really cared. You might try the same.” She winked.
Alex’s smile turned into a laugh, and he was thankful he’d stopped there before heading on to the foaling barn. He needed a little kindness before he faced whatever doom lay before him.
Resigned that he couldn’t delay any longer, he continued on to the foaling barn, where sure enough, his brother’s truck had been parked at an angle—proving that he ran the farm and could park wherever and however the hell he liked. It irritated Alex to no end, but instead of lashing out, he reminded himself that the breeding side of Hamilton Stables could more than triple the earnings of training. Alex might be the youngest Hamilton brother, but if his plan worked, he would bring in the most profit for the family business this year. And then what would they have to say? Nothing, that’s what.
Melissa West writes heartfelt Southern romance and teen sci-fi romance, all with lots of kissing. Because who doesn't like kissing? She lives outside of Atlanta, GA with her husband and two daughters and spends most of her time writing, reading, or fueling her coffee addiction.
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