Welcome back. If you came for the arranged marriage or marriage of convenience teasers, check out the posts HERE.
This week, we're moving on to forced proximity stories. These are romance books where the lead characters/love interests are compelled by circumstances (usually) beyond their control into each others company.
I didn't realise how many stories I'd written in this trope until I started reviewing them. It seems I have a thing for forced proximity. LOL.
We'll start with one of the readers favourites. Who else but Kola (The Essiens #4)?
The gist is that socialite, Tari, needs a place to crash for a few days because she posted photos of her cheating ex on the internet and her life imploded. Kola comes to the rescue, of course. But Tari is trouble with a capital T and less than 24hrs in Kola's house she's wreaking havoc on his life. Enjoy the teaser.
Kola's skin prickled as he got ready to jump into the pool. A quick side glance showed Tari standing by the window of his study. The tingling on his body increased as her gaze seared him from head to toes.
His cock swelled, straining against the shorts. Tempted to turn around and show her the full impact of her visual assault, he checked himself. She wasn’t one of his weekend girls with whom anything went. Tari was a lady. Yes, a wild child as a teenager, but she'd grown into a stunning, sophisticated lady.
If she even sensed half of the things he wanted to do to her, she’d run a mile.
He leapt into the pool, swimming to the other end before coming up for air. Noticing she no longer stood by the window, he swam a few more laps until the skin on his nape prickled and he lifted his head.
Tari stood at the edge of the pool, wearing what he could only describe as a very skimpy emerald bikini set, her hourglass curves barely tamed by the scraps of fabric, her flawless caramel skin tempting him to touch and taste her.
How was he supposed to keep his hands off her if she walked around his house with next to nothing on?
"I hope you don’t mind if I join you," she said in a cheerful tone.
She sounded a bit too jovial, in his opinion. He'd heard the tone several times in the past when she plotted some kind of tomfoolery as a young girl. He stared up at her face and sure enough, her eyes sparkled with mischief. She'd cooked up something. Time for him to get out of the water.
"You are welcome to the pool." He swam to the edge and pulled himself onto the rough non-slip concrete slab just as Tari dived in. He dried his body as she spoke.
"Don’t tell me you're leaving already. Surely, the pool is large enough for both of us."
Amusement laced her words, teasing him, threatening to wreak havoc on his tightly reined control.
He recognised the challenge in her cocked expression. She wanted to play games.
Oh, he could play her games. But he played with totally different rules.
And fact remained—she hurt and this was a means for her to lash out at the man who had hurt her. She would regret this later.
So instead of jumping back into the pool like his body screamed for him to do, he shook his head. "I’ve got some things I need to do inside. I’ll see you later. Have fun."
He gave her a quick grin and wink before heading indoors.
About KOLA (The Essiens #4)
When sassy heiress, Tari Essien, needs a place to escape the pressures of the hounding press, she turns to Kola Banks, a deeply scarred ex-soldier who's also the Essien chief of security. Kola can't offer Tari anything more than his protection. She's family for goodness sake, even if they share no blood ties.
It’s a weekend of lessons for both of them. Together they can't avoid the explosive heat that sizzles between them, nor help pushing each others' boundaries physically as well as emotionally.
But when the weekend ends and Tari's life is in danger, will Kola put his body as well as his heart in the line of fire to keep her safe?
Kola is available in ebook, paperback and audiobook.