Jan 15, 2012

Sunday Smooch: Made For Marriage

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!


Today we have a smooch from Made For Marriage by Helen Lacey but first ...

the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is -- CATHERINE!


Congratulations, Catherine! Can you please contact Wendy at

wendy (at) wendysmarcus (dot) com

and she'll send you a copy of Once a Good Girl.

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from Made For Marriage by Helen Lacey .....


Equestrian Callie Jones was used to difficult parents at her riding school. But Noah Preston took the cake. How dare he question her teaching abilities, after his headstrong daughter paid no heed to rules—her teacher’s or her father’s?
Single dad Noah was ready to apologize for overreacting. But he wasn’t sorry for the way the stunning American riding instructor made him feel. And he soon learned that there was more to Callie than her smarts, sass and fire: a shattered heart that threatened to splinter even further. Could he make her see that he—and his family—were for keeps?



[Set-up: Callie has retreated to the stables after Noah left the riding school where his eldest daughter is having lessons. She'd spent the previous evening with him and his children - and knows she is getting in deep. They'd argued earlier that afternoon about her reluctance to get too involved]




         She was glad when she heard Fiona’s car pull up outside and called for her to join her in the tack room. Only it wasn't her friend who stood in the doorway a few moments later. It was Noah.

         He was back. And he clearly had something on his mind. Callie got to her feet quickly. Her heart pumped. “Did you  . . . did you forget something?”

         He stood in the doorway, his eyes locked with hers. “Do you still love him?”

         She was poleaxed. “What?”

         Noah was in front of her in three steps. “Your fiancĂ©. Do you still love him?”

         “He's dead,” she whispered.

         “I know. But that wasn’t the question.” He reached for her, slid one arm around her waist and drew her against him. “The thing is,” he said, holding her firm. “If you still love him, I’ll do my best to stop . . . to stop wanting you.” His other hand cupped her cheek, gently, carefully. “But if you don’t love him, then I’d really like to kiss you right now.”

         Her insides contracted. “No,” she said on a breath.

         “No?”

         “I don’t love him.”

         His green eyes darkened as he traced his thumb along her jaw. “Good,” he said softly.

          And then he kissed her.

         Callie let herself float into the warmth of his mouth against her own. It was a gentle possession, as if he knew her, as if he'd been kissing her forever. Only one other man had kissed her before this, and as she allowed Noah’s lips to part hers, any recollection of that faded, and then disappeared. He didn’t do anything else – he just kissed her, like he couldn’t get enough of her mouth, her taste, her tongue.

         Instinctively, Callie’s hands moved along his arms and to his shoulders. She touched his hair, felt the silky strands beneath her fingertips and slanted her mouth against his. Finally, when he lifted his head Callie felt so much a part of him she swayed towards his chest. Noah held her still, one hand on her shoulder while the other splayed on her hip and she lifted her chin higher to look into his eyes.

         “Noah – I think . . .” Callie willed herself to move, but found such incredible comfort in his arms she simply couldn’t.

         He didn’t let her go either. “You think too much. How about you stop thinking and just feel.”

         Feel? Oh, how she wanted to just feel. But her doubts tormented her, taunting around the edges of her mind in a little dance, telling her that taking meant giving. And giving was . . . giving felt as far out of reach to her as the stars from some distance planet.

         He leant into her, like he knew her fears. “I’d never knowingly hurt you, Callie.”

         In her heart she knew that. “But . . . but I might hurt you.”

         “I’ll take that risk.” He kissed her again, long and slow and deliciously provocative.

         Heat radiated through him, scorching her and Callie wondered if she might melt. Kissing had never felt like this before. Nothing had ever come close to this. He was strong and safe – a haven for her shattered heart.



To be in the draw to win a signed copy of  Made For Marriage tell us what  you think are romantic places to be kissed (like the stables from this smooch)


Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced -- and a smooch from One Perfect Night by Rachael Johns will be posted!

34 comments:

  1. I loved that kissing Noah made her forget her previous kisser! Awesome!

    A fantastic kiss, Helen!

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  2. Loved your smooch scene, Helen! No need to enter me in the drawing as I already have Made for Marriage loaded onto my Kindle. Now all I need is time to read it!!!

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  3. Hi Nan and Helen

    The scene was lovely. I like any smooch scene if the emotion is there and in this scene it was.

    How about a smooch on a picnic by a little stream, with birds singing and the breeze whispering in the tree branches the couple are lying under. A bottle of champers and cold chicken and only her sighs and his groans of passion are heard.

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  4. I think where the two people kissed like in this smooch becomes romantic and special for them.

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  5. What a fabulous smooch! One part of me is dying to read on, but mainly I want to get the book and read from the start to see their journey to this point, THEN read on. =)

    Romantic places to be kissed? I'm fond of nighttime, under the stars.

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  6. Delicious smooch, Helen! I can't wait to read more of Callie and Noah's story! Noah sounds like a real sweetheart! (happy sigh)

    As for a romantic place for a smooch... in the moonlight on a balmy evening in the tropics. Mmm, I'm liking some of these other places for a smooch too... let's face it anywhere can be romantic with the right person!

    :)
    Sharon

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  7. hi...
    d perfect place to be kissed is anywhere as long as you are with the guy of your dreamzzz.....but i would prefer it to be in the bedroom..
    :P

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  8. Hi Nas - Glad you like their smooch :)

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  9. hi...
    d perfect place to be kissed is anywhere as long as you are with the guy of your dreamzzz.....but i would prefer it to be in the bedroom..
    :P

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  10. Hi Wendy - thanks for dropping by. Aren't Kindle's the bomb?

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  11. Hi Helen, I started 2012 by reading Made for Marriage and really enjoyed it. I loved Callie's complexity ~ such a strong person as a riding instructor and so vulnerable as a woman who was hurting. I really hated Noah's behavior in the beginning but soon grew to understand and like him as well. You had me cheering for both of them to get it right.

    I love the smooch.

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  12. Hi Bron - thanks for stopping by. Ah, the smooch by the stream.... sounds romantic :)

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  13. Hi Rachel - yes, under the stars is a great spot to be kissed!

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  14. What an emotional smooch, Helen! Loved it - can't wait to read this (and am soooo jealous you have horses in your book! I need to find a way to do that...).

    Um, romantic places to smooch... I'm with FazilatKhan - anywhere, as long as it's with the guy you love.

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  15. Gorgeous smooch, Helen. Can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to reading Made For Marriage.

    A romantic spot for a kiss? How about Trafalgar Square at midnight as Big Ben is chiming in the New Year?

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  16. Hi Sharon! Moonlight and balmy evenings sound great for the perfect smooch :)

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  17. Fazilatkhan - you're right, anywhere is good with the right person. Thanks for stopping by today.

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  18. Hi Kaelee - thank you so much for your lovely words about Made For Marriage. Great to see you here.

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  19. Oh, Helen, that was sooo good. I love your hero. A few paragraphs and a have to read this story and see how they arrive at their happy ending. Love that cover too!!!!
    A romantic place to kiss... in some happened-upon cozy shelter where you've rushed in, waiting for the rain to stop.

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  20. Hi Helen - great smooch. I really loved the dialogue leading up to that kiss, particularly where he queries her "No". No need for me to enter the competition as I've already read it and loved it! Congratulations again!

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  21. Hi, I think the most romantic place for two people to kiss is anywhere as it becomes special for them like in the smooch. But I think the most romantic would on the beach during sunset or in the garden during night with moonlit shinning above us.

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  22. Helen, what a beautiful kiss. That definitely makes me want to read the book. Awesome.

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  23. Hi Leah - yes, it's great being able to write about horses. And a couple of my own horses get a mention in Made For Marriage.

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  24. Hi Michelle - Trafalgar Square on New Years? There's definately a story in that somewhere :)

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  25. Noah's got it SO right. With a great smooch you don't want to think too much, just feel.

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  26. Hi Robyn - a cozy shelter sounds fab. When I think of smooches in the rain I always remember the last scene in Breakfast At Tiffany's. George Peppard was so sexy in his raincoat :)

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  27. Hi Lee - thanks so much for stopping by and your nice words about Made For Marriage. Glad you enjoyed it :)

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  28. Rishal, you're right - any place special is the right place. Thanks for stopping by today :)

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  29. Helen, love reading about your horses, both in the book and out! Keep up the great work!

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  30. Hi Marybelle - glad you like the smooch. Thanks for stopping by.

    Hey there Patti - thanks for being here :)

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  31. Gorgeous kiss, Helen. Can't wait to read their story and your first! Woooohooo!

    Please don't enter me in the draw - I'll be owning that book as soon as I find it!

    Cath

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  32. I love this scene. It's such a great kiss... sigh...
    =)
    Bec

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  33. Great excerpt!
    I think the most romantic place to kiss depends on the couple involved and what's going on in their lives.

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