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Monday, September 25, 2017

Feature and Giveaway: Fool Me Once by Catherine Bybee


Cynical divorce attorney Lori Cumberland lives by one motto: Love is grand, but divorce is a hundred grand. With one failed marriage under her own personal belt, Lori had fallen hard and early—and it isn’t something she plans on repeating. She’s content focusing on the temporary marriages of her rich and famous clients. When she joins some of her recent divorcĂ©es on a celebratory cruise, her only vow is fun, sun, and new friends. But Lori finds herself tempted by a jury of one.

For Reed Barlow, falling into the world of private investigation was easy. He knows the law and knows how to avoid breaking it—all while doing his job. His rule to live by? No emotion, no involvement…until Lori. His charming smile and cocky attitude distracts Lori and lowers her guard, which is exactly what Reed desires.

But what appears as a one-time-only flirtation may be a plot orchestrated by Reed. As he’s taking his investigation to a dangerous level, it’s Lori who could end up in jeopardy. Reed has only one shot for Lori to grant him a second chance. But if he comes clean with her, he blows his cover. And that just might cost him the opportunity for an alliance of family…and of love.

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The office door opened from behind.

Business Lori wore a tight pencil skirt, heels that weren’t too tall. Her silk blouse covered the creamy skin of her chest but accentuated the curve of her breasts. Her hair was partially held back in a loose bun that probably took her way too long to put up.

She made it two steps into the office with an auburn haired petite woman at her side before she recognized him.

“Reed?”

“Hello, Lori.” He dropped his voice.

She blushed.

“What are you doing here?”

“I was in the neighborhood.” Via a few freeways and with no other destination in mind.

“I was encouraging Mr. Barlow to make an appointment,” Lori’s secretary said from behind the desk.

“It’s okay, Liana. Reed’s a friend.”

The redhead cleared her throat with an amused smile.

“I’m sorry. Sam Harrison, this is Reed Barlow.”

Ah, yes … the woman from the papers.

He held out his hand.

“Lori and I met in Barcelona.”

Sam shook with the grip of a woman in business and not one only used to entertaining guests from her country club. “Is that right? How come you didn’t tell me about him?” she asked Lori.

Lori opened her mouth, closed it, and turned to Reed. “I wanted to keep him to myself.”

Sam choked on a laugh.

“I guess I messed that up,” he said, grinning. Lori rolled her eyes and stepped close. He took her advance as an opportunity to kiss her cheek in greeting.

“It looks like we will have more to talk about at dinner on Sunday,” Samantha told Lori.

“Should I be worried?” Reed teased.

“Probably,” Sam said. “Lori’s always welcome to bring a plus one…”

Reed wanted to jump at the invitation; instead, he looked to Lori for direction.

She wasn’t jumping.

“Maybe next time,” he told Lori’s friend.

“Perhaps. Lori?” Sam turned to her friend. “I’ll see you this weekend. Call me after New York.”

The two women hugged briefly before Sam turned and left.

“Liana, when is my next client?”

“Twenty minutes.”

Lori gave a quick nod into the depths of the office. “That’s all the time I have,” she told him.

“I’ll take it.”

He followed her down a short hall, past a conference room, around a small kitchen, and past an open office. From there, she welcomed him into her office space.

It wasn’t cluttered with papers all over a desk or useless knickknacks. It was clean lines and professional decor mixed with just enough elegance to say the space was occupied by a woman.

She closed the door behind them and walked around her desk.

He followed her.

“What are you—”

He didn’t let her finish her question before he grasped her slim hips, turned her around to face him, and lifted her until her butt was on her desk.

Lori sucked in a breath but didn’t push him away.

“I missed you.”

She bit her lower lip, and he replaced her teeth with his kiss.

New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bybee has written twenty-seven books that have collectively sold more than three million copies and have been translated into twelve languages. Raised in Washington State, Bybee moved to Southern California in hopes of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full-time and has penned the Not Quite series, the Weekday Brides series, the Most Likely To series, and the First Wives series.

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