by Jacie Floyd
The Billionaire Brotherhood Series #3
Opposites united in their disenchantment with life are pushed together in a cross-country drive where they discover that sometimes the long way home is the only way to go in Remaking Ryan by Jacie Floyd.
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1/13/2016 I Read Selfies
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Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pub. Date: January 4, 2016
In Book Three of the Billionaire Brotherhood, Ryan Eastham appears to have it all—fame, fortune, and legendary good looks—but injury has ended his high-profile professional football career and he’s at loose ends. After years of living, breathing, and training for football, he’s searching for something meaningful to do with his future. He expects nothing but boredom from the on-air sports announcer job he’s been offered, and his so-called love life is more tabloid fiction than fact.
Due to the shattering betrayal of her late husband, Jenna McCall is wary of men and their meaningless promises. Isolating herself from friends and family while she reexamines her goals and dreams, her baby daughter is her sole focus. Ryan’s unscheduled intrusion into her life leaves her irritated, edgy, and a little intrigued.
Family commitments throw this pair together as reluctant companions on a cross-country drive from Massachusetts to Missouri. Despite a wrong turn, stolen car, and fussy baby, they find unexpected pleasure in one another’s company. Amid wedding chaos and intense family drama in St. Louis, they each proceed with plans to start new careers in different parts of the country, but their attraction continues to build. When it’s time to say good-bye, Ryan challenges Jenna to remake their lives and plan a future together instead.
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“Zoey? Baby?” Ryan mumbled, snagging Jenna’s wrist and pulling her forward.
Caught off-guard, she found herself breast to chest with an implacable male form for the first time in eleven months, two weeks, and three days. Not that she was counting.
Before she could spring away, his other hand burrowed into the hair at the nape of her neck and turned her face toward his. It happened so swiftly that she didn’t—couldn’t—react fast enough to evade the maneuver. Unwelcome goose bumps quickstepped down her spine.
Her first thought was that he smelled male, woodsy, and slightly medicinal—like the great outdoors infused with a hint of anesthesia.
But then, along with the shock of having her chest pressed against his, came the panicky sense of suffocation. His breath mingled with hers. Sweat beaded her forehead. For a second, she couldn’t breathe. Her eyes crossed at the nearness of his mouth, just inches away. Before his lips touched hers, she pinched his nose between her fingers and twisted. Hard.
Jerking back, he somehow clipped her mouth with his chin. Jenna’s incisor sliced into her lip. She yelped and tried to escape his grip, but his fingers remained firmly clasped around her wrist. His arm muscles bunched with all the expected strength of a professional athlete. If he chose to, he could sail her across the room like a Frisbee. Luckily, he didn’t.
Squinting at her, confusion clouded the depths of his silvery gray eyes until the puzzlement cleared. He nodded in recognition.
“Jenna.” The word held a whisper of accusation, low and pulsing. He rubbed his chin. “That was uncalled for.”
“No kidding.” She wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. “Dang, I think I’m bleeding.”
“Here,” he said, lifting a corner of the sheet to dab her lip.
“No, thanks.” She held up her hand to block the gesture, plucked tissues from the box on the bedside table, and passed him one. “You don’t have any infectious diseases, do you? STDs? Anything?”
“Clean as a rookie at his first training camp.”
“Good, ‘cause you’re bleeding, too. I hope we haven’t mixed and mingled bodily fluids. Blot your chin,” she instructed, but sat on the edge of the bed and did it for him. “Didn’t anyone teach you to look before you kiss?”
“Must’ve missed that lesson when my dad was teaching me the exact opposite.” Covering his mouth with his free hand, he yawned so wide his jaw cracked. “Why are you here? Someone send you on a little guilt trip?”
Titles are either a gift from heaven or a test administered by the devil. They come to me perfectly and immediately or I grasp at something in desperation. Ideally, a phrase or theme of the book jumps out and demands to be used. Stand-alone titles are the easiest, but if the stand-alone suddenly transmutes into part of series, I have a problem. Publishing a series requires branding, compatible titles, cohesive covers, similar tone, and many other components. The first two books in my Good Riders series, Meet Your Mate and Cursed By Love, worked together and fit into the fun brand I created for them, but the third book hadn’t been written. The title needed to be light-hearted and three words. What I finally decided on was Meant For Me which fit the story and the criteria I had set, but it wasn’t quite as unique, clever, or catchy as I had envisioned.
Similarly, the three books for the Billionaire Brotherhood were written as stand-alones, but before the third one was completed, I could see they worked better as a series. Each book originally had four words in its title, but they weren’t compatible with the other two. The Brotherhood needed strong, dynamic titles, that easily differentiated the three stories. When I realized that all three of their names were two syllables and contained the letter Y, it made sense to put their names in the titles along with a defining characteristic. After trying about a hundred different combinations, I finally decided that each title should contain two alliterative words. A verb, adverb, or adjective, plus the hero’s name. Winning Wyatt and Daring Dylan seemed obvious, but Ryan was more challenging. Since his story is about remaking his life, I wonder why it took so long to come up with that (after going cross-eyed from looking at R-words in numerous dictionaries and thesauruses), but I’m happy I did, and it looks so dang good on his cover.
Like most writers, I’ve always been an avid reader. I always knew I wanted to write, too, but I kept that tidbit to myself for a very long time. What does a reader who secretly wants to write do? She works in a library. My very first job, and maybe my favorite, was in my hometown public library. I loved everything about the grand old building and was fascinated by the people who came and went every day. But mostly, I loved the books. Seeing them, handling them, checking them in and out, shelving them, and, of course, reading them. To have access to books that contained so much knowledge, history, and tradition was a pleasure that never grew old.
In my spare time through the next few years, I continued reading and began learning how to write. I accumulated stacks of completed manuscripts and an increasing determination to get them published. Happily, my sixth full-length novel has just been released. I would describe my books as fresh, flirty, and fun contemporaries about strong women and men who deal with relatable situations in familiar settings. They’re also emotionally rewarding with a liberal helping of humor, because, really, what point is there to life without laughter?
After living my childhood and adult life in a variety of Midwestern cities, I was always an island girl at heart, yearning for white sands, perpetual sunshine, and crystal blue waters. This past year I turned that dream into reality by abandoning my snow shovel along with my day job and moving to Florida to write full-time. The view from my lanai is great, the wildlife is interesting, and my handsome and heroic husband handles all of my IT issues and regularly prods me to interact with actual living, breathing people, not just the ones I invent and put on the page.