- N. N. Light
New Release | Impact Zone: Hot Kona Nights Book 1 by @BrendaKerrBooks #steamyromance #bookboost
Title: Impact Zone: Hot Kona Nights Book 1
Author: Brenda Kerr
Genre: Steamy Romance
A woman fleeing her past.
A man searching for peace.
And an island where the gods sometimes grant second chances.
Mary Coyle’s life in Dublin is falling apart. Raised on the war-torn streets of West Belfast, Mary survived the constant threat of terrorist attacks and bombings, including one that claimed the life of her father. Now, she struggles through her days teaching while her nights are haunted by nightmares and insomnia. Offered the chance at a fresh start, Mary agrees to fly halfway around the world to help a mysterious woman write her memoirs.
Matt Cruz has everything he ever wanted in life. Owning a shop on one of the most popular beaches in Hawaii allows him to live his days by the rhythm of the wind and waves, far removed from the dry deserts and frozen mountains where he fought for his country. When fate brings Mary into his life, he convinces himself it’s no big deal helping a stranded traveler.
But at the place where the ocean ends and the mountains begin, the tropical breezes whisper about the power of love and forgiveness and sometimes magic can happen. Can two wounded souls open themselves up to the possibility of forgiveness and love?
"You constantly amaze me, Matthew Cruz. At first glance, you are a hairy surf bum living for the next wave. But dig deeper, and the picture becomes much more complex."
Matt sipped his wine. "I am who I am, Mary. I'm not complex at all."
"Oh, I disagree. Your home is one of the neatest I've ever seen. You fold your underwear. You sort your t-shirts by color. You make a delicious breakfast and excellent coffee and are willing to go through the trouble of adopting a feral cat and her kittens." She took a sip of wine and smiled. "You know enough about a good wine to pick the best value on the menu. And you are also an amazing lover. I'm just wondering what else about you I don't know."
Matt picked up his wine glass and sipped, savoring the rich flavor of the wine as it rolled across his tongue. "You're giving me too much credit, Mary. I am just a guy trying to find as much happiness in this world as I can. I've seen the worst the world offers, and now I just want to live a quiet life." With you. He gazed across the table at the Irish witch who had enchanted him. The setting sun cast a rosy glow, giving the woman across from him a mysterious air, her blonde hair gifted with red highlights by the setting sun. He smiled and raised his glass in a toast. "To happiness."
Mary smiled wanly and clinked his glass. "To happiness." She turned and looked out at the fading sunlight, and Matt was surprised to see unshed tears glistening in her eyes.
"I'm sorry, Mary. I didn't mean to upset you."
She shook herself and turned to face him. Whatever she was going to say was interrupted by the waiter, who lit the candle on the table. "Are you ready to order, monsieur?"
"I'll have the filet mignon, please."
"And for madame?"
"I'll have the same, thank you."
The waiter nodded, then refilled their glasses from the bottle sitting in ice in a silver bucket tableside before leaving.
Once the waiter departed, Mary swirled her wine, gazing into the ruby liquid as it rolled along the side of her glass. Finally, she lifted her gaze and met his gaze. "It's so easy for you to talk about happiness, Matt. But what exactly does happiness mean?"
Matt considered Mary's question carefully. "I guess happiness is like beauty, isn't it? It's all in the eye of the beholder. I know people who aren't happy unless they own the latest sportscar or the biggest house on their block. My brother is constantly chasing the next professional advancement, the next command. He told me once that the only place he's happy is at the con of a submarine, chasing Russian boomers under the Arctic ice." He shrugged. "I have a lot of moments of happiness in my life, Mary. To me, happiness is fleeting and unexpected. I'll be sitting on my board watching the sunrise and feel this sense of inner peace that's hard to describe. To me, that's happiness. Knowing you belong where you are and are doing what you're supposed to do."
"See, I've never had a clear idea of what it meant to be happy, Matt. When I was a little girl, happiness was a full belly and a good night of sleep, with no gunshots or explosions. I craved the basics of survival. Food, shelter, and safety were all I could imagine needing. Even now, I struggle because I'm constantly waiting for something bad to happen, for what I have to be snatched away." She leaned forward and took Matt's hand in hers, turning it over and tracing the scars and callouses on his palm. "I don't feel that way with you, Matt. I feel safe. Something about being with you allows me to relax, to let go. And that scares the shit out of me."
She looked up, and in the candlelight, Matt saw tears streaming down her face. "I'm scared, Matt. I'm scared that if I allow my feelings for you to grow, I'll mess things up. I'm thirty-five years old, and I've never been in love. I don't know if what I feel for you is love, but it's something big. And the thought of losing it hurts more than I can imagine."
Brenda Kerr is a romance novel enthusiast who spends her days teaching in Las Vegas. When she isn't teaching or writing, she enjoys traveling. Hot Kona Nights is her latest series of steamy romances.
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