Author: Elle Chardou
Release date: February 3, 2013
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: New Adult
Event organized by: AToMR Tours
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Evie Sandstrom has always had secrets. She has grown up with them and now they are coming back and chipping away at her confident facade. Always one for an adventure, she decides to leave after college break and spend the summer in Boston.
The Irish Gangster...
Finn Reilly is not only a bad-boy drug dealer but he is also Evie's first love. When they meet again in Boston, sparks begin to fly and although they share one huge secret that should have destroyed them forever, it unites them at a time when she needs all the help she can get.
The French Model...
Evie's mother, superstar actress Athena Donahue, has remarried to Etienne Fournier, a model who is eighteen years her mother's junior and wants to get to know Evie in more ways than one.
Once Athena drags her daughter back to L.A. under dubious circumstances, she is within the sights of Etienne yet out of the sights of Finn. Can they resolve their differences and will true love prevail or will life get in the way and spoil their chances of happiness?
Did I still love Finbar Reilly?
It wasn’t so much a question of whether I loved him because he was my first love but whether we were willing to try for a second time to make our relationship work now that we were adults. If he continued his criminal enterprise activities then obviously the chances of us having a functional relationship were slim to none. My mother would rather have me murdered herself than to have her only child wrapped up with an Irish thug.
I promptly grabbed my phone from Finn and replied, “I didn’t buy the damn thing—my dad did for my nineteenth birthday.”
“Wow. He really thinks a nineteen-year-old needs a fifty thousand dollar mobile phone?” he inquired in a sarcastic voice.
“Whoa, check out the big brain on Finn. How the hell do you know how much this phone costs anyway?”
“I read you know. Contrary to what you might think, I am completely literate and can use a computer just fine. I have an iBook over there in the corner, a Kindle Fire, an iPod Touch and the latest iPhone. I also have an iPad but I mostly use it to watch films when I want to be alone.”
I shrugged apathetic shoulders. “What can I say? He’s old world and Swedish…not to mention a former action hero superstar. He doesn’t get that people in the real world don’t carry around outrageously expensive shit like rich people do.”
“Oh yeah, where is he living now and when’s the last time you saw him? I read about his marriage to Artemis Ozan. That must have sent your mother around the bend. He dumps her and marries a British pop singer who used to be part of the mega-girl group, The Baby Gyrls.”
“No one even knows who the hell she is here so that helped.” I began to play with my phone just to keep my hands busy and away from his body. “It didn’t help that Artemis is a huge star in the UK. Mom used to hate to attend premieres there because they would always ask her questions about the woman and wonder whether she had anything to do with my parents’ divorce.”
Finn stared me over with bright crystal blue eyes. “Did she?”
“Well…yeah. He met her at the premiere of that film he did about the rogue CIA agent. He and Mom were having problems because of what had happened here between us but…she doesn’t blame me. She thinks she made the right decision but Dad was furious with her. He thought you and I could really make a go of it and wanted to buy us a place in Europe. I would have been sixteen soon and that’s the age of consent in Sweden. We could have gotten married.”
I was silent for a moment. “He never thought we should have just been separated the way we were and furthermore, he didn’t want me to grow up in the spotlight. His bright idea was moving us away and allowing me to grow up like a normal teenager in Sweden. Of course that would have meant you would have wanted to move there but he was willing to finance the whole set-up.”
Finn took the phone from my hands and set it down on the table next to the bed before he slipped his arms around my waist. “You know I would have gone anywhere with you. Why didn’t your dad have more of a say?”
“Because Mom just took over the whole situation and that is when he gave up and went to Europe to do that film. By the time he got back, everything was already put into motion and there was nothing he could do. He kind of just allowed the marriage to fall apart and the next thing I knew, Mom told me he was moving to London to star in a Broadway show and they were getting a divorce.”
We drifted down onto the bed and when he kissed me again my heart began to thump in my chest with an intensity I didn’t think was possible. Everything about the situation was perfect including the way his JD soaked tongue swirled with mine and we both kind of drifted into each other’s space.
My hands had a mind of their own as they removed his wife-beater to reveal a new tattoo, one of a shamrock on the left side of his chest with the colors of the Irish flag. This joined a black Celtic cross he had on his right shoulder blade, a black broken heart on his right upper arm and my name in cursive on his left upper shoulder just above a hard-core barbed wire tattoo.
I traced the shamrock tattoo on his chest. “This your last time dabbling with ink?” I questioned in a teasing manner.
“I don’t know. You still have your tramp stamp?” he inquired.
“Um, yeah. It makes interesting conversation when ever I have ever been in bed with a guy…which has only been a couple of times since you…guys I mean.”
The tramp stamp he referred to was a tattoo I had at the base of my back which read “Property of Finn R.” It was during the days when we were inseparable and although I was underage, it didn’t stop me from getting it done. I was so happy to be with him I would have had it tattooed on my face if he’d wanted me to at the time.
“Speaking of being with other guys…I don’t want to hear about it, okay? And does that mean you’re on anything?” Finn inquired with cold look flashing through his gorgeous eyes.
“No, I’m not on anything because the guys I have been with…we always used rubbers and lately, I’ve been kind of dabbling on the other side of the fence.”
(1) eBook copy of ATONEMENT - a New Adult contemporary romance by the author. Open International. You will need leave me a comment here by telling me what you think about this series and please leave name, email, and preferred format (epub, mobi, pdf)
The first installment of The Atonement Series.
Deirdre Bardot is a PhD student at Harvard and on her way home for Thanksgiving when she finds out her father has been murdered in a vicious hit and run by a drunk driver.
Forced to piece her life together after such a traumatic event, Deirdre moves back to Seattle to be closer to her younger sister, Caitlyn, and their mother.
When her psychiatrist, Dr. van der Meer, suggests she needs to get away from it all and take a vacation, her best friend decides to introduce her to a friend of his who has more or less the same idea. Colin is perfect: he's good looking, self-deprecating and sexy as hell but he also happens to be the Dr. van der Meer's son.
Deirdre finds herself falling hard for a guy she barely knows and one who is equally into her as she is into him. They decide a trip to Western Europe together is the perfect way to get to know one another a whole lot better.
Then an unspeakable and random act of violence occurs one night and Colin realizes he is forced to reveal a secret to Deirdre he has been hiding...a secret that is breaking him, and in doing so to free his conscience, he just might destroy the relationship he has created with Deirdre and lose her forever.
Publisher's Note: Due to mature adult themes, sexually explicit scenes and adult language, this novel is not suitable for minors under the age of 18.
About the Author
Elle Chardou is a world traveler and author of several different series.
Ms. Chardou is the author of The Ties That Bind Trilogy, The Atonement Series, The Hart Family Saga, The Vamp Saga, The Supernaturals, Beginnings: Book I (The Plague) series.
She is currently working on Only Love (The Atonement Series), Queen of the Immortals, Book Three in The Vamp Saga.
Ms. Chardou has lived abroad in Stockholm (Sweden), Manchester (England), Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland. She currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Author social media links:
Blog: The Beautiful People: A Writer’s Journey located http://thebeautifulpeopleawritersjourney.blogspot.com.
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My heart beat faster as I followed the eye-play between Finn and Brandon. Richard stood again and walked over to me. From the corner of my eye, I saw Finn’s fingers flex and knew this wasn’t a good sign but Brandon moved quietly to his side and whispered something in his ear to calm him down.
“You look familiar…you see, I never forget a face and I know I have seen you before so why don’t you fill me in on who you are…rich girl?”
I stared into the Richard’s gray eyes. “My mother is kind of famous. She’s an actress but I’m not here on some kind of power play. Finn really is my boyfriend and my life is all fucked up. It isn’t as glamorous as you think. I don’t get along with my mom and I don’t know my dad all that well. Let’s just say I am much more comfortable where I am now than I ever was in L.A.”
He laughed though there was no mocking in the expression from him. “I can take one look into those hard blue eyes of yours and know life hasn’t been easy for you. You’re damaged goods, girl, but Finn always has been good at the tough cases. I can see why he wants to protect you. You can take care of yourself—no doubt about that—but there is some part of you that has been hurt and you’re incredibly vulnerable.”
Richard touched my chin and lifted my face higher until our eyes locked. “I look forward to seeing you again.”
He let me go and walked over to Finn and Brandon. “This has now become a two man operation. I don’t mind Evie comin’ but Fiona and Dylan have to go. I won’t deal with people who are out of it. People who are intoxicated or high have itchy trigger fingers and I don’t need to be shot by some tweaker who thinks I am a danger when all I am doing is having a conversation. You two got that?”
“Yeah, we figured this would be their last time coming along on a drop once you saw how loaded they were,” Finn murmured in a soft voice.
I turned toward the three men and watched as Finn and Brandon gave their car keys to two of Richard’s buddies.
“The product will be replaced by your money as usual. After that, I suggest you guys all stay around for a couple of drinks, at least until most of their Oxyballs have worn off and they’re making enough sense to go home without running either one of you two in a ditch.”
The rest of the night was spent in Richard’s elaborate club where Finn and I got to dance the night away but the adrenaline still rushed through my veins. We didn’t get a chance to talk until we settled in our own private booth next to the one Brandon, Fiona, Dylan and some vacuous blonde he’d picked up along the way were sharing.
I sipped on an ultra-dry martini while Finn nursed a bottle of Guinness since he had to drive back to Boston that night. My eyes wandered to his face only because we were within kissing distance and I could see the shades of his five o’clock shadow but since he was fairer haired, I felt it more than saw it. His crystal blue eyes sparkled with enthusiasm and sexual energy.
“For some reason I thought drug running was so scary but with you, it just seems normal, a simple transaction,” I finally said before our lips found one another’s.
Finn was a terrific kisser and when his tongue prodded my lips open and the sweet yet bitter aftertaste of Guinness left its mark in my mouth, it was so much easier to go a little bit further than we had intended to. He pulled me closer and his hands found my bare back before one of his hands settled over my firm breast and squeezed gently.
I pulled away then though his hand didn’t move away from my breast. I shivered uncontrollably and found myself imagining so many scenarios between us, I felt naughty just thinking about them.
“Actually, Rich is a very cool customer. I like dealing with him but some of the others…it’s not this smooth. It also doesn’t help that Dylan can’t seem to stay sober. I knew it was only a matter of time before he barred him from coming to anymore drops. The only thing that Rich is paranoid about are people with itchy trigger fingers and he has an issue with druggies. His mother was a crackhead and he grew up similar to Brandon…only difference is his mother was black and his father was some Frenchman she fucked while he was passing through Haiti. He was born here in America and thus considered an ‘anchor’ baby but she stayed sober enough to accomplish getting her citizenship and then everything went to hell in a hand basket so to speak.”
Finn swigged from his Guinness and continued, “A lot of us haven’t had the easiest of lives and that’s why Dylan’s insipid excuses about why he can’t stay sober fall on deaf ears. You guys had grandparents’ who loved and worshipped you. A lot of us didn’t even have that. I grew up not knowing who my father was…just that he was some Yank my mom had a few fun nights in the sheets with. How do you think that makes me feel? Do you think it makes it easier knowing he’s a pureblood Irishman—whatever that is supposed to mean when you think about the sheer amount of times Ireland has been conquered and the various tribes of people who have raped and pillaged our nation?”
“Agreed but I’m still struggling with why you didn’t want me to come.” I looked down at his gorgeous, naturally pink lips because it was easier to concentrate on his mouth than those eyes that never lied.
“Isn’t it obvious?” Finn tilted his head toward mine and looked deeply into my eyes. I couldn’t break contact, not even if I wanted to. “I’m not worried about you taking care of yourself because I know you too well. I was afraid you would become addicted to the adrenaline rush. Babe, I know you—already you like it too well.”
I smiled before I kissed him again. “You’re right…I do.”