Hi, I’m Charlotte O’Shay.
When I wrote Forever in a Moment, the first novella in my Deerbourne Inn series duet, featuring vivacious lawyer Samantha & rugged farmer Jed, a certain secondary character kept popping into scenes and wreaking havoc. Karla Payne. Readers wanted to know more about Karla and asked if she would ever get her happily ever after.
Ten Things You should know about HOME IN YOUR ARMS, KARLA PAYNE & ZANE BLACKTHORNE
1 - HOME IN YOUR ARMS is a steamy contemporary romance about finding love after loss featuring KARLA PAYNE, a tavern owner and ZANE BLACKTHORNE, a retired career Army 1st sergeant.
2 - I started writing HOME IN YOUR ARMS before FOREVER IN A MOMENT was published.
3 - HOME IN YOUR ARMS picks up where my first Deerbourne Inn novella, FOREVER IN A MOMENT ended. But each story stands alone and can be appreciated without the other.
4 - KARLA knows best. She knows everybody in town. She believes it’s her destiny to lead a solitary life. At thirty-two years old, she’s a successful sole proprietor of a popular tavern in her small Vermont hometown. She loved and was loved by a good man. She should be grateful, shouldn’t she? Besides no man has come along yet who compares to Joe in any way.
5 - KARLA‘s combative. She’s in charge of her life. She loves her family and her hometown but no way will the well-meaning folks in Willow Springs or her family tell her what to do, or worse, feel sorry for her.
6 - ZANE gave the Army everything he had for twenty years. In return, the Army gave Zane a home and an education.
7 - Without the Army, ZANE is rootless and he’s compelled to visit Willow Springs, Vermont, the town his friend Joe talked about so much, it became Zane’s adoptive happy place.
8 - ZANE feels compelled to check up on Karla, his buddy’s sweetheart on his way to a job interview.
9 - KARLA is bossy and fierce and everything he desires in a woman but ZANE knows even if KARLA wants him, she’ll never love him.
10 - Don’t miss the Epilogue
Title: Home in Your Arms
Author: Charlotte O’Shay
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
After her sweetheart Joe dies in a road accident, twenty-four hours after he returns from Army service, grieving Karla Payne slams the door on love. Five years later, Karla's tavern business is booming, and she owns her home, but she knows forever love has no part in her future.
Headed to interview for his first civilian job, retired career Army 1st Sgt. Zane Blackthorne can't resist visiting his late buddy's beloved Vermont hometown. He also can't resist looking up Joe's sweetheart, Karla, who is an alluring mix of brains, beauty, and bravery. Loyalty to his brother-in-arms demands Zane fight his attraction to Karla. Besides, even if Karla wants him, she'll never love him.
Can Zane say goodbye to the woman he has no right to call his own?
Even if his only true home is in her arms?
“Gas stop completed, Karla slowly picked up speed on the highway. The cloud cover and fog trickled to wisps behind them, making way for a watery sunshine.
But she continued to drive with care, navigating through a surprising number of early morning commuters. “We should be back by seven-thirty,” she said. “I’m hungry. How about some bacon and eggs at my place?”
“No, that’s okay, thanks,” he said, eager to put distance between them. Karla didn’t need him, and he couldn’t need her. “Can you drop me at the Deerbourne? I hear the food there is amazing.”
“I do believe I’ve just been insulted.” There was laughter in her voice and there it was—another facet of her to add to his fast-growing list of attributes he’d had no way of knowing from Joe’s tales. The throaty music of her laughter.
Still, the back of his neck heated at her tease. “Ah, no, it’s only that you did so much already coming to help last night in the storm. I ought to get going. The last thing you need is me hanging around.”
“Zane, correct me if I’m wrong but I know I’m not. You stayed awake and at watch all night long in that garage while I slept…under both blankets. Seems I owe you for letting me get a decent night’s sleep while you sat in the cold. So we’re even. My bacon and eggs may not be as good as what they serve at the Deerbourne, but they’re not half bad, I promise. And in a moment of madness the other day, I picked up some muffins from Love Sprinkles’ bakery, so you’ll be doing me a favor if you help me eat some of them. They’re my favorites but I bought way too many.” She was back in full Karla teasing mode easing him into the illusion there was nothing wrong with a few more minutes of her company. And yeah, he was a weak fucker because he was gonna take those minutes.
So, he made no protest when she turned onto Thrush Road instead of going to the Deerbourne Inn.
Once they were in her house, Karla made short work of putting on a pot of coffee. She turned back to find him hovering right inside the kitchen door. He hadn’t taken his jacket off, his conscience still begging him to do the right thing and get the hell out.
“Zane, pour yourself a coffee and have a seat.” She pointed to the mugs she’d set out near the coffeepot. “I’m going to run upstairs for a quick shower. I’ll be…”
“You have a shower here?” He interrupted before he could halt his wayward tongue.
She raised a brow. “I do. Why?”
He avoided her direct glance shaking his head. “No reason.”
“Zane, c’mon now. This is me, Karla.”
Which was exactly the problem. She was Karla. Maybe he’d never admit it to anyone else, but he knew she was the woman he’d driven clear across country for the chance to see. Heat scorched his cheekbones, perspiration sprang out to coat his temples. “The Deerbourne…”
She nodded her head patiently, her silence encouraging him to continue. Why was the prospect of explaining his inability to use the tub a thousand times worse than admitting a fuck up to a superior? Why did she tie him in knots like this?
“My room at the Deerbourne has this clawfoot tub…and…”
“Oh for goodness sake, you can’t fit in it! I know”—she was nodding now—“it’s very charming, right? But not practical for a guy your size.”
In an instant, everything was fine. She understood. He nodded.
“Why don’t you go over to the inn and get a change of clothes? By the time you’re back here, I’ll be finished and you can shower.”
He couldn’t think of a logical reason to refuse so he didn’t. Even if he was only going to spend a few more hours with her, he didn’t want her lasting memory of him to be how he stank like a barracks.
We're celebrating the upcoming release of Home in Your Arms by Charlotte O'Shay and you can win a $25 Amazon Gift Card. Click below to enter:
Runs October 2 - 17 and is open to US/Canada residents.
Winners will be drawn on October 19, 2020.
Award-winning NYC Author Charlotte O’Shay was born into big family and then married into another big family.
Arguing..er..negotiating skills honed at the dinner table led her to a career in the law.
After four beautiful children joined the crowded family tree, Charlotte traded her legal career to write about happily ever afters in the City of Dreams.
Charlotte loves to challenge her heroines and heroes with a crisis and watch them figure out who they are while they fall in love.
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