A TRUE STORY told through the voice of New York Times Bestselling author E.K. Blair.She’s an author.
She’s a mother.
She’s a wife.
She’s a fraud.
A woman marked and bound by her own deceit, this is the astounding tale of how one choice knocked her world from its axis forcing her to battle through a year of scandal and betrayal, blurring the lines between reality and fantasy.
This is an intoxicatingly risqué stand-alone true story tangled in lust, heartbreak, and contrition.
I legit do not know how I made it through this book without heavily self medicating. But I’ll tell you why I finished.
A – The writing is amazing. It’s EK Blair, so I already knew I would appreciate just plain good writing (let’s be honest, sometimes it’s hard to come by). I couldn’t put it down – after I got through the beginning set up and backstory.
B – I’m a big sucker for a true story. And although this story had me like Will Ferrel circa Zoolander 1…
…I had to know what happened. I cannot believe this is a true story. It’s insane, intense, inapprorpirate – All the things that a True Hollywood story episode would have. And it was deliciously emotional.
C – Although I was pissed at Victoria for most of this book and was being super judgmental – I’m not going to lie and say there wasn’t a time in my life that I fantasized about what Victoria was going through. A lot of people may say that you cannot judge Victoria until you are in the situation. And I get that, I do, but I still couldn’t stop myself from saying – I literally would NEVER do that. What in the actual fuck is this lunatic thinking.
This book is definitely NOT for everyone. But it’s different that’s for sure. It’s dark and raw and has some seriously suspect topics that made me feel a lot of uncomfortable feelings. There is some intense steam which I’m still recovering from for a couple of different reasons. In any case – I know this is all over the place – but if you are in the mood for something different than what you are reading and want to dive into a scandalous and twisted TRUE story, then you need this book immediately.
USA Today bestselling author and International bestselling author, E.K. Blair takes her readers on an emotional roller coaster with her dynamic and intense writing style. Noted for her ability to create fleshed-out characters that will evoke a realm of reactions, you can be assured that her stories will linger with you far beyond the last word.
A former first grade teacher with an imagination that runs wild. Daydreaming and zoning out is how she was often found in high school. Blair tends to drift towards everything dark and moody. Give her a character and she will take pleasure in breaking them down, digging into their core to find what lies underneath.
Aside from writing, E.K. Blair finds pleasure in music, drinking her Starbucks in peace, and spending time with her friends. She’s a thinker, an artist, a wife, a mom, and everything in between.
From New York Times bestselling author, Penelope Ward, comes a sexy new STANDALONE novel.After getting dumped, the last thing I needed was to move next door to someone who reminded me of my ex-boyfriend, Elec.
Damien was a hotter version of my ex.
The neighbor I’d dubbed “Angry Artist” also had two massive dogs that kept me up with their barking.
He wanted nothing to do with me. Or so I thought until one night I heard laughter coming through an apparent hole in my bedroom wall.
Damien had been listening to all of my phone sessions with my therapist.
The sexy artist next door now knew all of my deepest secrets and insecurities.
We got to talking.
He set me straight with tips to get over my breakup.
He became a good friend, but Damien made it clear that he couldn’t be anything more.
Problem was, I was falling hard for him anyway. And as much as he pushed me away, I knew he felt the same…because his heartbeat didn’t lie.
I thought my heart had been broken by Elec, but it was alive and beating harder than ever for Damien.
I just hoped he wouldn’t shatter it for good.
Author’s note – Neighbor Dearest is a full-length standalone novel. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.
OMG. Well- here’s another book that just made my top books of 2016 list!!!
NEIGHBOR DEAREST was so damn good. First of all, Penelope Ward is just so good at making her characters leap off the page almost immediately. So basically, as soon as you start reading- be prepared to not put the book down until you’re done.
So I didn’t realize that Chelsea is a character we meet earlier. To be clear- this book is a standalone but Chelsea is introduced in the book STEPBROTHER DEAREST. You do not have to read that book to fall in love with this one.
Chelsea is beginning her life post Elec and that starts by living next door to the delicious, tall dark and handsome Damien. The man who seems like an angry neighbor, turns out to be the most amazing guy ever.
Seriously- Damien is like utter perfection. This is a friends to lovers story in every way and Damien is 100% a best friend to Chelsea. Even though they both want to take it to the next level, Damien fights it every step of the way because he truly cares about Chelsea and protecting her heart.
If you have never read a book by Penelope Ward, I think this is a wonderful place to start. It’s light and fun and sexy without being too much of anything. Some romance books these days have sex on every other page. Now- I love a good sex scene- but real life romance actually involves talking and other things besides sex and I love that this book really shows a REAL relationship forming between these two.
The characters are all likeable (except Elec- seriously- hate him so much I don’t even know if I want to read his book) and everything about this story is enjoyable. I could not put it down.
I can’t wait to see if we get more from some of the secondary characters- two siblings to be exact!
Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author. She grew up in Boston with five older brothers and spent most of her twenties as a television news anchor, before switching to a more family-friendly career. She is the proud mother of a beautiful 11-year-old girl with autism and a 9-year-old boy. Penelope and her family reside in Rhode Island.
Cade Hall has always been the golden boy of the gridiron. Because of his talent at football, coupled with his father’s wealth, he’s always gotten his way. But when a night of drunken debauchery lands him in hot water with the college athletic board, neither his influential father nor his charming grin can save him. He finds it a total buzz kill when he is sentenced to community service with troubled youth at an inner-city shelter. But his nightmare is only beginning when his greatest high school regret is the very one in charge of the program, and she has him by the balls in more ways than one.
For Avery Prescott, senior year was a nightmare of epic proportions, and Cade Hall played the lead villain. After she fled her small town for college in the bright lights of Atlanta, she thought she had escaped the painful memories of her past. She never could have imagined Cade would waltz through the door of the outreach program she presided over. But Avery has news for Cade–she isn’t the same shy, doormat of a girl she was in high school. Since she holds Cade’s football future in her hands, she’s more than ready to make payback a real bitch.
Will the two stay in the defensive zone or discover that sometimes life’s greatest lessons are learned the hard way?
Fuuuuuuuuuck! This seriously was not happening. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any worse, apparently the universe didn’t just hate me. It fucking despised me. Not only was I stuck working forty hours a week at this shithole, but now I had the worst blast from my past standing before me. Avery Fucking Prescott.
In every “manwhore with seemingly no soul’s” world, there is one girl he regrets. One girl he thinks about from time to time. One girl he measures all the other ones against. One girl he even cries about when he’s shitfaced.
Mine was Avery Fucking Prescott.
I couldn’t help noticing that the Avery standing in front of me didn’t seem the same. Sure, she still had the same long, dark hair that she swept back in one of those ponytail things. Gone were the glasses, which made it a lot easier to see her green eyes that had flecks of gold in them. Of course, today there was pure and unadulterated hate burning in them directed at me where back in the day, there had been love.
But I had managed to kill that love by being a prick. Yeah, I’m sure you’re thinking that isn’t all too shocking based on the pure stupidity you’ve seen me exhibit so far. The thing is that Avery brought out the good that was buried deep down inside me. The good that you needed a fucking bulldozer to unearth.
While there were slight differences in her appearance, her entire personality seemed different, and no, I don’t mean just about how she hated me with a fiery passion. She wasn’t the wide-eyed, innocent farm girl who seemed so out of place at Harlington Prep. It was like she’d had a personality transplant. It reminded of me of what happened to my older sister, Catherine, the summer she turned fifteen, and my mother sent her off to some glamour school shit to detox the awkward out of her. When she came back a month later, it was like she had become a Stepford Kid. Catherine no longer took the time to play with me. She had “more important” things to do like contouring her brows or preparing for cotillions. Things were never the same between us after that.
My ego couldn’t help wondering if what had happened between us had caused the seismic shift in Avery. Like I’d broken the Old Avery with my actions, and this was what had been rebuilt in its place. But another voice rationalized that unlike me, Avery had probably gotten her shit together in the last three years. College had matured her.
After a few moments of a silent standoff, Avery said, “Hello again, Cade.” Her words might have been polite, but her voice was strained. I could tell it was taking everything within her not to go off on me.
“Oh, you two know each other?” Tammy or Theresa, or whatever the hell her name was, questioned.
Do we know each other? Oh yeah, we know each other. Like in the biblical sense. I can even tell you about the heart-shaped birthmark on the inside of her right thigh.
But I knew I would mortify the hell out of Avery if I said anything like that in front of her boss. So instead, I cocked my brows at Avery for her to take the lead on how she wanted us to respond to that question.
“A little. We went to high school together,” she replied diplomatically. The wounded look that momentarily flashed in her eyes told an entirely different story—the story where I played the villain.
But Tammy didn’t seem to pick up on it. “Well, isn’t it a small world?” she mused.
“Yeah,” Avery and I said in unison.
Tammy smiled at me. “I was just about to sing all of Avery’s praises to you, but since you know her, I don’t need to waste my breath, right?”
“Right,” I muttered.
“Well, then. I’ll leave you two alone to catch up, and for Avery to show you the ropes.”
“Thank you, Tamar,” Avery said politely.
Oh it was Tamar. Shit, I needed to remember that. “Yeah, thanks, Tamar.”
Tamar started out of the door and then stopped. She threw a grin over her shoulder. “Now, Avery, just because you know Cade, you can’t go easy on him. He has a debt to pay to Georgia Tech’s athletic department.”
Avery glared at me before flashing a fake smile at Tamar. “Oh, I promise to make him earn his keep.”
Apparently Tamar wasn’t picking up on the heavy tension between us. “Unfuckingbeliveable,” I muttered under my breath.
“Excuse me?” Avery demanded.
I held up my hands. “Nothing.”
Avery crossed her arms over her chest. “I never thought I’d have to see you again.” She shook her head at me, which caused her ponytail to swish back and forth like a whip. “Yet here you are standing before me. I guess, I must’ve done something epic to piss the universe off this much to put you back in my path.”
Whoa, that was sure as hell not what I was expecting. “I could say the same.”
Her green eyes narrowed to fury-filled slits. “Excuse me? You have some nerve to stand here in front of me and say that considering what you did.”
She was right. Only an epic tool would not immediately apologize for what I did to her. It should have been the first words out of my mouth. And not just to make things run smoothly here at The Ark, but because it was the right thing to do. After all, she had truly been an innocent in the whole fucked up situation of me being an emotionally crippled bastard. I’d let her be tortured by a psychotic chick who thought she belonged to me. I’d humiliated her with my deceptive words and cruel actions. But the greatest of my crimes was I had broken her heart.
But in this instance, I was being King Epic Tool because I couldn’t get those words to come out of my mouth. It wasn’t something I struggled with today. I’d had three years to stay those two words. Hell, I’d started off a hundred texts, but I’d never sent them. I’d even done a few stalkerish drives by her house to say how sorry I was in person, but being an emotional pansy ass, I had never gotten out of the car.
So instead of taking the emotional high road, I went slumming. “It’s been three years, Prescott. You really need to get over that.”
Katie Ashley is a New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best-Selling author. She lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia with Olivia and her two very spoiled dogs. She has a slight obsession with Pinterest, The Golden Girls, Harry Potter, Shakespeare, Supernatural, Designing Women, and Scooby-Doo.
With a BA in English, a BS in Secondary English Education, and a Masters in Adolescent English Education, she spent 11 1/2 years educating the Youth of America aka teaching MS and HS English until she left to write full time in December 2012.