KAREN’S KILLER BOOK BENCH Welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench where readers can discover talented new authors and take a peek inside their wonderful books. This is not an age-filtered site so all book peeks are PG-13 or better. Come back and visit often. Happy reading!
Crazy In Love Series
By Jennifer Zane
Waiting: Crazy In Love Series – Book 1
Once you get the zing you can’t go back.
Jane West has everything a woman could want. A job in a small Montana town’s only adult store, two busy young boys and one dead husband. She’s been waiting–for a little zing. That all changes one summer morning at a garage sale with her kids.
Now someone wants their garage sale find and will let nothing get in their way. Including Jane. This new excitement for Jane spells trouble for a relationship with new neighbor–and hot fireman–Ty Strickland. Can Jane and Ty handle a relationship meddling mother-in-law, crazy kids, and stay alive while trying to solve the garage sale mystery? Will their love be worth the wait?
Wanting – Crazy In Love Series – Book 2
Now on sale for .99!
Veronica Miller is a plumber on a mission—buy out her dad and the family business is finally hers. One big, handsome problem stands in her way. And it’s not a clogged toilet.
Jack Reid is the boy she mooned over in high school. He’s back in town, but he’s no longer a boy. Ten years ago he broke her heart, skipped town and never came back. Now he’s a big shot lawyer in Florida whose uncle feigned a health crisis to trick Jack into coming back into town. Upon arrival Jack finds his uncle is gone, he’s homeless, and forced to be roommates with the one woman he could never resist.
Jack discovers his lust hasn’t cooled for the sexy Veronica, but neither has her heart forgiven him. A sex-toy educational party, romance novel writing gone awry, Goldie’s meddling, an escape artist snake, a strange stalker in a fluffy pink coat, a house fire, plumbing gone awry, bitter cold, and a smart-faced garden gnome all conspire to force Jack and Veronica to work through a decade of baggage, disappointment, wanting and unrequited lust while figuring out the mystery behind the stalker.
Wondering – Crazy In Love Series – Book 3
Emma Hardy hasn’t been able to forget Sam Carter, or his incredible kiss in the elevator. Sadly, he rocked her world (and her libido), then calmly walked away, quit his job, and disappeared for two months. Not exactly the hot kiss follow-up she’d been hoping for. But Sam was busy making plans. And now, thanks to a glued-together gnome name George, a set of handcuffs, mistletoe, and a meddling adult store cupid disguised as an eccentric but innocent grandmother, Emma’s about to get the greatest Christmas gift of all…true love.
Wishing – Crazy In Love Series – Book 4
Violet Miller is a teacher savoring her summer break until she’s been called in as emergency reinforcements—of the dating kind. She volunteers to help an old flame by pretending to be his girlfriend. In Alaska. At a family reunion. Since the guy is a handsome, lumberjack-sized doctor she’s never quite forgotten, faking a relationship won’t be hard work—while wishing for more.
Mike Ostranski is a desperate man on vacation. His mother wants grandchildren and sees a crazy Alaskan woman as a candidate for daughter-in-law. Mike needs Violet by his side to deflect the lady’s advances.
A week in Alaska as boyfriend and girlfriend should be easy for them. They grew up together, even had a brief fling. What could go wrong?
Excerpt from WANTING – Crazy In Love Series – Book 2
Now on sale for .99!
Copyright 2012 – Jennifer Zane
When little girls play make-believe with their dolls, most pretend they’re mommies or princesses or teachers. Have little tea parties with them, play dress-up. That’s what my sister, Violet, did with hers. Me? I played plumber with mine. I dressed my little Betsy Wets-Alot up in a pair of gray coveralls stolen from a male test pilot action figure I’d found at the toy store. He’d been tossed, naked, into the back of my closet until my sister found him and used him for the groom in her pretend weddings.
Not only did I dress my self-wetting doll in menswear, I ran a straw down the pants leg to divert the faux pee away from her anatomically-incorrect little body. No potty for her. I was five and knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I, Veronica Miller, wanted to be a plumber. Just like my father.
Now, over twenty years later, I’d fulfilled my childhood dream. I was the plumber I’d longed to be, working with my dad. Soon to be working on my own. One last payment to my old man stood between his official retirement and my small business owner status.
I smiled to myself about this almost-upon-me momentous occasion while lathering my hair in the shower. I squealed when the spray of water I was standing beneath went cold and quickly rinsed out the strawberry scented shampoo.
“Stupid hot water heater,” I grumbled to myself as I yanked back the plastic shower curtain and stepped out into the steam filled room. I longed to get back to my own house as Violet’s plumbing system needed some serious work. Even in the thick humidity, goose bumps popped out all over my body as I quickly toweled off and snuggled into my ratty, yet wonderfully comfortable flannel robe.
While I leaned over and rubbed my wet hair with a bright pink towel, I heard it. The sound of a key in a lock, the front door opening. I froze in place upside-down, staring at my knees between the edges of the robe, towel tangled with my long hair. Since I was a plumber, not a law enforcement officer, I lacked the training to keep panic at bay. That hot, adrenaline-induced fear rose up inside me between one heartbeat and the next. I swear the little wet hairs on the back of my neck stood up. Help. I needed to get help, but my cell was in my purse, which I’d dropped by the front door, one room away. No house phone.
I stood up, flipped my dark hair back over my shoulder, held my breath and listened. Rustling and a little mumbling was all I could make out. Who was in the house? Sure, they must have a key since I hadn’t heard a window break, but the only other person who was supposed to have one was Violet, and she was in Utah.
I tiptoed over to the door, bit my lip and winced as I turned the knob and hoped it didn’t squeak. I slowly opened the door as I held my breath. Peeking into the bedroom, I saw nothing out of the ordinary. Barely made bed, dirty clothes tossed haphazardly at the wicker hamper. Something heavy thumped onto the floor from the vicinity of the front door and I looked in that direction as if I had x-ray vision and could see through the wall to the person in the living room.
I squeezed through the small gap I’d made in the bathroom doorway, afraid if I opened it anymore, the old hinges would give me away. Breathing as quietly as possible, which was pretty hard in panic mode, I bent down and grabbed the first thing I could get my hands on to use as a weapon. What I held didn’t register. I knew it was solid wood like a baseball bat and as good as I was going to get for protection.
Violet’s house was small, with only one floor and a scary basement I rarely visited. Living room, kitchen, bedroom and bath. That’s it. Which also meant there wasn’t anywhere to hide.
For breaking and entering, the guy wasn’t Mr. Stealth. It was the middle of the afternoon, he’d come in the front door and he was awfully noisy for someone being where they weren’t supposed to be. Even if he was the worst robber ever, that didn’t mean he wasn’t dangerous.
My palms were sweaty as I peeked around the door jamb into the living room. His back was to me and he appeared to be looking down at something he held in front of him, probably a cell phone. It appeared he was texting, or reading one. Tall, around six feet, maybe a little more, and solid. He wore jeans and dark leather shoes. His black jacket was a lighter weight than one would expect for the dead of winter in Montana in the throes of a bitter cold snap. A gray knit cap covered most of his dark hair.
I didn’t recognize him, but I wasn’t in the mood to wait for him to turn around and see me. I decided to use the element of surprise. I tiptoed over to him and whacked him on the arm with my wooden weapon. Hard.
I’d aimed for his head, but nerves and slick palms messed me up and I hit his shoulder instead. The reverberations tingled in my fingertips.
Jennifer Zane has lived all over the country–from Georgia to Maryland, New York to Colorado. including an exciting five years in Montana. Her time in Big Sky country was the basis for this book. When she’s not writing, she savors the insanity of raising two boys, is figuring out how many meals she can make with a pressure cooker, and teaches a pretty mean karate class. She currently lives with her family in Colorado.
Links to Jennifer’s website, blog, books, etc.
WANTING now on sale for $.99!