Title: HEART STORMS
Author: N. Christine Samuelson
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Three people’s lives collide in a perfect storm of heartbreak and ruin, betrayal and love. One woman and two men are drawn to coastal South Carolina to an oceanfront Victorian B & B inn. With losses from divorce, lies, secrets, cheating spouses, and abandonment, all three people do not seek love or relationship, yet… as they move into and through the emotional storm of their lives, destiny brings them together in an extraordinary way. But will they be destroyed or transformed by their fates?
An enchanting seaside inn complete with mystical elements lifts the characters’ spirits and helps them on their journeys. Their passionate triangle must be broken for them to move on with their lives, but who ends up with whom, or do they, and when?
Jade married the wrong man. But it took five years and one morning to find out. As she gathered her things to leave for her job managing a hotel in Los Angeles, her husband said, “We need to talk… now.”
“I’m going out the door. Can’t it wait?”
“No.” He sat on a stool at the kitchen island. “And you might want to tell your boss you’ll be late. This might take a while.” He looked down at his hands, wringing them together.
While Jade grabbed the phone to text her boss, her stomach sickened and her nerves tingled. Something awful was about to happen. Scenarios whirled through her mind—Did he lose his job, is he sick, did someone die, is he in trouble? Whatever it is, we’ll deal with it, we’ll survive and go on. She stood across the island from him.
Still not looking at her, he spewed out statements so fast she heard only certain words, only the most impossible, devastating words: “leaving for good… have to… the end… sorry.”
His sentences were drowned out by the shattering white noise of her denial and heartbreak. This wasn’t happening. No, no, no, this wasn’t her husband speaking even though it was his face and voice. This was no ‘talk;’ it was a bomb dropped in the middle of her life with the words no woman ever wants to hear.
Inside her head, Jade’s reaction was, ‘This is not my life, not the one I agreed to, not the one I planned on and saved for, the one I envisioned since I was a girl.’ While outside of herself, her husband’s words burst like firecrackers in her head, “… other women… you and I hardly ever together… drank too much… drugs… gambling… I love someone else, didn’t mean to, sorry… addicted, need help.”
In the same way a deep scratch on a CD causes the music to halt and skip until silenced by pressing the stop button, Jade’s brain skipped at the deep cuts of his revelations. With shock magnifying at hearing each confession, Jade’s desperate thoughts skipped to: If he cleans up, he’ll come to his senses; SKIP: He’ll revert to the man I married. Another SKIP: We’ll have a second chance. SKIP again: “I’ll help you,” she pleaded, “we’ll do this together.” But there was no magic button to stop his words.
His uncaring expression froze into a grimace while he slung words like darts, her heart being the target. “No. Nothing will change how I feel. I don’t need your help. I don’t want it.”
Through sobs she asked, “But why? I love you. We’re partners.”
He finally looked into her eyes. “Because I love her. She’ll be my partner as soon as our divorce is final.”
Jade’s knees buckled and the room spun around. When she and Devlin married, her mother, Maggie, had given her a fairy tale wedding because she’d never seen her daughter so happy as with this man who lit up her world. Now Prince Charming was leaving, taking his light and love, making her world go black as she crumpled to the floor. She became conscious a minute later and found herself in his arms, her head still spinning. “Please tell me this isn’t real; it’s some kind of nightmare.”
He leaned Jade against a kitchen cabinet and told her she wasn’t dreaming. He sat on the floor beside her gazing straight ahead to avoid seeing the agony in her eyes.
Jade’s breath turned shallow; her mind swam in a fog of disbelief. When he spoke, his voice showed no emotion. “I don’t mean to be cruel, but this is real and you need to deal with it.”
Stunned and grasping at anything to fix this, she placed her head on his shoulder and her hand on his arm hoping he’d feel her love and respond in kind. “Why are you doing this? Now? So fast? You don’t have to do this.” With no response, she said, “Please tell me why. You owe me the truth.”
He wiped perspiration from his forehead through his hair, and muttered, “There’s no easy way to say it. I have to do this. She’s pregnant. I’m going to marry her.”
Jade yanked her head and arm away as if he were a leper and shrieked, “A child? You bastard. Why would any woman want a cheating, drug-addicted man for a husband and father to her child?”
“I wasn’t addicted when I met her. My affair with her differed from the others…”
“Others?!” Jade screamed so loud he jerked his head back. Her voice was part sobbing, part gasping for air like being punched in the gut and stabbed at the same time. “You had other women?!”
With his head hung low, he uttered a barely audible, “Yes.”
. . . Jade was afraid to say or do anything because she wanted to kill him, to get him out of her face and off the planet except she wasn’t capable of murder. Her dreams were the only things dying now as she realized she’d expected the fairy tale—so much so it blocked the truth of him out. Jade vowed to never trust the too-good-to-be-true guy again, or the storybook life and the happy ending. There were no such things.
Apple Books (itunes): https://books.apple.com/us/book/heart-storms/id1468510355
Barnes/Noble (Nook): www.barnesandnoble.com/w/1132053729
What’s the first binge-worthy book you read and why was it a must-read?
The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley. It’s a must-read for anyone who loves Scottish highland settings and people, stories of love and mystery spanning hundreds of years that blends historical events with contemporary characters and plot. Beautifully written with sumptuous Scotland settings with ocean, cliffs and rugged countryside.
What makes your featured book a binge-worthy read?
Heart Storms has unexpected plot twists, complex characters written from three points of view, beautiful setting descriptions, deep emotions with lots of love, conflict, and romance. It’s a journey through the storms of heartbreaks and losses anyone can incur through life and relationships and shows the power of love to heal and move on with a poignant, unusual ending.
Praise for Heart Storms:
“The love triangle will transform readers… a poignant finale … The many real-world issues are treated with grace and compassion … a wonderful depiction of how the heart can love many and in different ways during different times.” – InD’Tale Magazine review
“A brilliant book…beautifully written story about heartache, betrayal, love, loss and letting go of the past… blending mystical and romantic elements.” – N.N. Light’s Book Heaven
“It’s an amazing read. What a great storyteller you are.” – From Amazon reviewer
“Heart Storms delivers: ...a heart wrenching yet life-affirming tale of love, betrayal and ultimate redemption… Through a flowing script, Samuelson takes you into the [characters’] lives … well worth the read.” – Goodreads review
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Christine Samuelson has been a lifelong writer in many professional and personal capacities, but now writes the kinds of stories she loves—about life and love’s challenges, tragedies and victories. Her overall themes deal with the bonds of love that transform lives and transcend time. Her characters and plotlines are grounded in reality but have a touch of mysticism and mystery. Writing is the way she shares the tragic, the magic, the joys and triumphs of everyday life.
Christine lives in coastal South Carolina where the people, land and sea are constant sources of inspiration. She hopes readers of her books will be inspired to look at life and love through a different lens and realize that no matter your circumstances, we all share similar stories in our lives and our hearts.
Social Media Links:
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/nchristinesamuelsonauthor/
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/N.-Christine-Samuelson/e/B07B8VT9BB