Title: MIND WAVES
Author: AMANDA UHL
If he can control her mind…
Government operative David Jenkins is skilled at controlling his emotions. Feelings are lethal when your job is to infiltrate minds, erase and implant thoughts, and guard the nation’s intellectual capital. But even he can’t fight his strange attraction to Grace Woznisky. He’ll do whatever it takes to protect her from a madman intent on possessing both their minds. Neither suspect their dangerous enemy has a larger motive, and David may be Grace’s only chance for survival.
Can he control her heart?
All freelance artist Grace wants is steady-paying work and to see her flighty sister to the altar. But after David offers her a job, she finds herself in the middle of a mental tug of war—one that has her reeling from nightmares and fighting for her life. She must decide: Are her growing feelings for her new boss authentic, or is she a victim of his mind-altering abilities?
His ebony hair gleamed under the fluorescent lights, and he took a seat slightly apart from the others, staring at his notebook with a stillness that stood out. Although he was not looking at her, Grace sensed he watched her carefully and, in fact, was already making notations in his notebook.
He turned his head toward her slightly to catch her staring, his eyes stabbing into her like a mouse singled out by a dangerous predator. Maybe it was her imagination, but they seemed to glow from within, like a cat in the night. His thick, glossy black hair contrasted dramatically with the chiseled lines of his face, which could have been carved from marble.
She peeled her gaze away from his with some effort and pulled out her samples. "I, I'm sorry. I didn't expect such a large group. I only brought five packets. Hopefully, some of you can share."
Handing them out hurriedly, Grace began her presentation. Having spent long hours poring over design ideas to create the mockup she was now showing, she knew it was some of her best work. The mural she would create with pieces of green, blue and yellow beach glass she had gathered mostly on the Lake Erie shoreline would dominate the south wall of the main entrance of the building, rising like a giant wave to greet its visitors. The biggest issue was whether she could pull it off. The yellow glass she would need was rare. And since she worked alone, she would have to hire plenty of help to bring the design to life. Grace was also not sure she could get the pricing she had indicated, which is where she would fudge a little. Once she got the job, she would convince Brice Gallant to up the budget slightly for materials.
After showing them her proposal, Grace was concluding her speech when she was interrupted by the intense man with the notebook. "How do you propose to obtain that much beach glass for your design? One of the colors you have specified is rare."
His question threw her off, given Grace had the same thought only minutes before. She had a large collection to offer from years of gathering glass from the Lake Erie shoreline, but it would be likely she would have to buy off the Internet. She wasn't confident local providers would have the colors she was after--many of them were her artist friends with their own projects involving beach glass. Grace studied him again carefully. How did he know about the rarity of certain colors?
"I have a few sources." She forced herself to look at him directly, heart pounding. "If I can't find what I'm looking for locally, I’m certain I can find what I'll need on the Internet."
"Ah, but that could be expensive. And besides," her interrogator glanced at Brice, "didn't you say you wanted only local products in the design?"
Brice Gallant looked startled for a moment, but quickly seized on the idea. "Good observation, David. Although it may not look like it today, Gallant Enterprises is a neighborhood company, started by my great grandfather nearly one hundred years ago. We pride ourselves on keeping our business in the community, hiring local workers and supplies as much as possible. I want to make sure the chosen design reflects our philosophy."
"Well, I'm sure I can find enough local sources for the artwork."
"What about labor?" The man, David, was persistent, his expression impossible to read. "This is a big effort and must be completed by the grand opening in November. How do you propose to get all the mosaic work completed in such a short amount of time? You’ll need skilled assistants. Will those also come from the community?"
Sweat beaded on her forehead. He had her there. There were only a few other skilled mosaic artists who were local and they were her competitors. They would be unlikely to assist her on the budget she had to offer. Grace had been planning to hire a few friends from art school who lived in New York City.
"I do plan to use art students at a local college. But as you pointed out, mosaic work does require skilled labor. I know several talented artists working out of New York City who could assist if I can't find the local talent. Also, I--"
"Great questions, Jenkins." Brice Gallant interrupted. "This is why I like to have you attend these things. A stroke of luck you happened to be in the vicinity. Thanks for stopping to visit."
David chuckled, the sound grating on Grace's nerves. "Happy to assist."
Brice Gallant rose from his chair and offered her a hand, indicating the interview was at an end. "Grace, it was a pleasure talking to you. We’ll be in touch after we have a chance to consider all of our options. Thank you for sharing your ideas with us."
Grace had a sinking feeling she had lost the bid. What's more, she suspected the dark-haired David knew it, too. She squared her shoulders. "When can I expect to hear from you, Mr. Gallant?"
"We’ll be in touch with you within a few days." Grace noticed the big man looked at David before responding, as if seeking his approval. Weird.
"Okay,” she agreed, plastering on a smile. "I'll look forward to hearing from you."
There was nothing left to do but gather her materials, shake Brice Gallant's hand and the hands of all the others, and hustle out the door. Although she kept her head high, in her mind, it hung in shame. If she didn't get this job, she would have to call the bank again and beg for an extension on her mortgage payment. She might even have to move in with her mom and Glenn, until she could get back on her feet.
iBooks: https://itun.es/us/ce0Feb.l(ebook or print) / https://itunes.apple.com/us/audiobook/mind-waves-unabridged/id1314588054 (audio)
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2dph4Aq
What’s your favorite part about being a romance author?
I often say that writing romance novels requires every bit of skill and talent I possess. I enjoy the challenge of telling a story and love how I learn about the characters myself as the story progresses. Somehow, despite being plagued by doubts while I’m writing, I always manage to find that happy ending, which is so satisfying.
Here’s my tip to add romance to your love life:
Read romance novels and watch Hallmark movies. That’s what I do. 🥰
Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $25 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $15 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $10 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Runs February 1 – 29
Drawing will be held on March 2.
Amanda Uhl has always had a fascination with the mystical. Having drawn her first breath in a century home rumoured to be haunted, you might say she was "born" into it. After a brief stint in college as a paid psychic, Amanda graduated with a bachelor of fine arts in theatre and a master's degree in marketing. Over the past twenty years, she has worked as an admissions representative and graphic designer, owned her own freelance writing company, and managed communications for several Fortune 500 companies, most recently specializing in cybersecurity. Amanda is an avid reader and writes fast-paced, romantic suspense with a paranormal twist and big city contemporary romance with small-town heart from her home in Cleveland, Ohio. When she's not reading or writing, you can find Amanda with her husband and three children, gathering beach glass on the Lake Erie shoreline or biking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. For the latest updates, sign up for her newsletter at: http://amandauhl.com/social-media/.
Social Media Links:
Linked In: - http://www.linkedin.com/in/amanda-uhl-0aa817123