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Before We Kiss
Cover of Before We Kiss
Before We Kiss
Fool's Gold Series, Book 14
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New York Times bestselling sensation Susan Mallery returns to Fool's Gold, California, where it's true that sometimes you have to kiss a few frogs...

Former pro-football kicker Sam Ridge has notoriously bad luck with women--from cheaters to fame chasers. Still, the gorgeous brunette at the bar in Fool's Gold looks harmless--until she takes him home and he discovers a room devoted to securing a man, for life.

Dellina Hopkins never guessed that storing gowns from a friend's bridal boutique would chase away her first and only fling. After her parents died, she skipped her "wild youth" to raise her sisters. She doesn't want forever from Sam, but one night--all night--would've been nice.

His clean getaway gets messy when his firm hires Dellina to plan an event. As long hours lead to late nights, the two succumb to temptation again. Has Sam's luck finally changed? Or this time, will Dellina be the one to run?

New York Times bestselling sensation Susan Mallery returns to Fool's Gold, California, where it's true that sometimes you have to kiss a few frogs...

Former pro-football kicker Sam Ridge has notoriously bad luck with women--from cheaters to fame chasers. Still, the gorgeous brunette at the bar in Fool's Gold looks harmless--until she takes him home and he discovers a room devoted to securing a man, for life.

Dellina Hopkins never guessed that storing gowns from a friend's bridal boutique would chase away her first and only fling. After her parents died, she skipped her "wild youth" to raise her sisters. She doesn't want forever from Sam, but one night--all night--would've been nice.

His clean getaway gets messy when his firm hires Dellina to plan an event. As long hours lead to late nights, the two succumb to temptation again. Has Sam's luck finally changed? Or this time, will Dellina be the one to run?

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  • From the book

    "Returning to the scene of the crime?" Dellina Hopkins asked as she stared at the dark-haired man standing on her porch. She supposed the polite response to his presence was to invite him in. And she would...in a minute. But first she was going to make him work for it.

    Sam Ridge, all six feet of dark-eyed, arrogant handsomeness, narrowed his gaze. "You're not going to make this easy, are you?" he asked.

    Dellina smiled. "No. Would you, if you were me?"

    He surprised her by flashing a grin. "No, I wouldn't."

    "An honest man." She bumped the door open wider with her hip and stepped back to let him in. "It's a miracle."

    He moved into the house. Dellina let the screen door slam into place, but left the thick wooden door open. It was summer in Fool's Gold, and plenty warm. The breeze would be nice. Plus—and this was the part she would never admit to Sam—having the door open meant they weren't totally alone. Okay, they were alone, but it didn't feel so intimate. And based on what had happened the last time they'd been together in this house, that was a good thing.

    Sam paused in the middle of her living room, as if not sure where to go. His head turned slightly and she had a feeling he was glancing down the hall—toward her bedroom. No doubt remembering what had happened some five months ago.

    Dellina wanted to say it hadn't been her fault—that everyone was allowed to be stupid on Valentine's Day. Or in her case, on Valentine's Day night. Only she had known exactly what she was doing and it had been as wonderful and disastrous as anyone could have imagined. Now both she and Sam were going to have to deal with the consequences.

    He turned to face her, then motioned to the sofa. "We should probably have a seat."

    "Will that make things easier for you?" she asked.

    "If I say yes, will you sit?"

    "Probably."

    "Then yes. It makes things easier."

    Dellina settled in one of the club chairs while Sam took the sofa.

    He moved with controlled power. It was the former professional athlete thing, she thought, watching him sit down. At the risk of sounding like a groupie, she had firsthand knowledge that the man knew how to use his body. Of course, the last time she'd been in his presence, she hadn't been interested in sitting. Or talking. But then neither had he. They'd practically tumbled over each other in their race to her bedroom. He'd—

    Dellina pushed the very visceral memories away. Yes, Sam had been delicious in bed. But then things had gone downhill. She needed to remember what was important. He was here about a job. Not his unrequited lust for her. Based on how he'd been avoiding her for the past several months, when it came to her, he was plenty requited.

    But he was also in a bit of a pickle.

    The old-fashioned phrase made her want to smile. Yup, Sam needed her. Not in a delicious take me now kind of way, but for business. She was a party planner and he wanted to plan a really big business event. He was stuck and she was his way out. Sometimes, not often, but sometimes, circumstances went her way. So after five months of being able to ignore her and that single night, he'd been forced to face her. Was it so very wrong of her to enjoy the moment? She thought perhaps not.

    She rested her hands flat on her thighs and looked at him. "How can I help you?"

    His dark gaze settled on her face. "Really? You're not going to admit you know what any of this is about?"

    She blinked deliberately, then opened her eyes wide. "When you made your...
About the Author-
  • New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has entertained millions of readers with her witty and emotional stories about women. Publishers Weekly calls Susan's prose "luscious and provocative," and Booklist says "Novels don't get much better than Mallery's expert blend of emotional nuance, humor and superb storytelling." Susan lives in Seattle with her husband and her tiny but intrepid toy poodle. Visit her at www.SusanMallery.com.

Reviews-
  • Booklist on Summer Nights The wildly popular and prolific Mallery can always be counted on to tell an engaging story of modern romance."
  • #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber "Susan Mallery is one of my favorites."
  • Publishers Weekly on Summer Days "Mallery infuses her story with eccentricity, gentle humor, and smalltown shenanigans, and readers...will enjoy the connection between Heidi and Rafe."
  • Library Journal on Only Yours "An adorable, outspoken heroine and an intense hero...set the sparks flying in Mallery's latest lively, comic, and touching family-centered story."
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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Before We Kiss
Fool's Gold Series, Book 14
Susan Mallery
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