Yes yes yes! Finally, right!
You may have heard this before. Then again, you may not have. Melting Jane is the original title for the book some of my readers know as Sugar Rush. The contract was up on the book and I decided I wanted to make a few changes, add some word count, a new scene, some extended scenes, give it a new cover, and lower the price.
I’ve always loved this book. Jane is sassy and snarky and hates that the men in her life are always right. Graham is delicious and sweet and determined. It’s one thing when a woman doesn’t want a man and keeps saying No, it’s quite another when she DOES want him and keeps saying No.
If you read Sugar Rush, thank you. If you’re so inclined to re-read it in it’s new packaging, thank you.
If you haven’t ever read about Graham and Jane, and Jane’s friend Edward, I’m hoping you will give it a try.
Graham Hall is a twenty-six year old Texan with the job of his dreams: being a freelance travel writer for a national publication. He’s just finished his latest article about small winter resort destinations in Colorado and has earned some personal down time. With the six month lease not yet up on the small cabin he rented, Graham decides to stick around the area for a while and in the process, finds himself agreeing to a blind date with a feisty, down on her luck in the love department, candy maker named Jane.
After all, what could it hurt?
Jane, completely oblivious to the set up, arrives at Graham’s isolated little valley cabin to deliver a box of her handmade Chocolate Kick truffles. From the moment Graham opens the door, Jane is tongue tied and ticked off. Edward, her business partner and most certainly former best friend, set her up. When she regains her ability to put two coherent words together, plus size, mid-thirties Jane apologizes for intruding and assures Graham that she will take care of the mistake.
What ensues is a series of encounters and confrontations between Jane and Edward, Jane and Graham, and Edward and Graham. At the heart of it all, is Jane’s happiness. Edward wants this for her more than anything. Graham finds himself caught up in her tart tongue and curvy body and isn’t about to call his all too real pursuit a failure, no matter how many times she says no.
With her inability to continue denying herself the man she affectionately refers to as Cowboy Surfer in her head, she gives in and is rewarded with scorching hot sex and a lot of follow-up phone calls after she learns the truth of Graham’s attraction. His persistence leads Jane to believe that life doesn’t have to revolve around chocolate truffles, but rather should revolve around a delicious, well traveled and well built younger man.
“What about this one?”
This one, was a little black dress that would dance around her knees when she spun this way or that. “No.” He swished the dress back and forth in front of her on the hanger. She crossed her arms and turned her head. She didn’t want to be tempted into the little dress. Kitchen stores were one thing. Clothing was another.
“Why not? It would look darling on you.”
“In case you’ve forgotten or have lost your sight recently, I don’t have a darling figure.”
“I, nor anyone else, would know a thing about your figure since you keep it hidden under every shapeless garment you can find.”
“Try it on.” He pleaded. “Please.”
“Him? Him who?” Jane thought for a moment and then understanding dawned on her. “Oh.” She grimaced. “No. Let’s go.” She got up and as soon as she did, Edward sat down in the newly vacated chair. “What are you doing?”
He crossed one leg over the other and looked for all the world like he hadn’t a care or a job. “I’m not going anywhere until you try on the dress.”
“Oh my god, Edward. Fine. You can sit there all day. I’ve got work to get back to.” When Edward didn’t make a move to get up, she threw up her hands and started walking toward the front of the store.
“Look,” she said, walking back toward Edward. “I love you. You’re the best friend I’ve ever had, but you need to stop.”
“No. I don’t.” And given the look on his face, he believed that. “I want the best for you and I don’t have to stop until I’ve gotten through to you.” He blinked his puppy dog eyes and if they’d been alone in their loft, she’d have growled and stomped her feet. He was annoying, irritating, frustrating, and completely pissing her off. As it was, they were in a store, a high end clothing store, one of Edward’s favorites and she wasn’t comfortable making a scene. She’d wait until they were outside where she could drag him into a side street.
“This is the only one, understand? The only dress I intend to try on.”
Edward grinned. “Yes. That’s the only one I saw that I liked. The rest of their dresses were a little matronly for what you need.”
“What I need?”
“Sexy, but sweet.”
Jane rolled her eyes. “Oh please.” She slipped into the dressing room and hung the light and flirty dress on the wall hook. With long chiffon sleeves, a sweetheart neckline, and a nipped in waist, it was sweet looking. The flippy skirt coupled with slits in the sleeves to reveal skin, gave it the sexy look. It was an understated sexy, but with the right heels… Damn. He had her. The meddling man had her and he knew it. “I hate you.”
“I mean it, Edward,” she said, tugging her sweatshirt off over her head. She rocked her hips from side to side to get her jeans down. She huffed and sat on the little bench to pull her snow boots off. “I really hate you for this,” she reminded him.
“Let me see, then we can decide how much you hate me.”
“A lot.” But the dress slid down over her body like it had been made just for her. The side zipper ate up the distance to the top without her having to suck in her stomach, clench her butt, pray, or offer her soul. The lining hugged her curves with ease and the chiffon flowed. It was such a simple dress but it was perfect.
She stepped out of the little cubicle and Edward’s mouth dropped. That was a good sign. That was the best sign. He loved it on her and his gloating look hadn’t set in yet. She was thankful for that small miracle.
“Wow. I don’t know what to say.” He stood and came toward her. “I haven’t seen you in anything like this in so long. If I were a straight man…”
“Lucky for me, you’re not.” They stood in front of the three-way mirror, both of them staring at her from all sides. She realized she looked very nice. Well, as nice as she could without make up, her hair in a messy pony tail, and her one leopard print pink and black sock and her one neon green and black zebra stripe sock. If she’d known he wanted to do more than grab coffee and a pastry…
“I love it, Jane.” He was giddy with excitement, and practically bouncing up and down. “We should buy it.”
“No. No Edward, we shouldn’t. It’ll just sit in the closet and — ”
“No arguments. We’re getting the dress. Now, go take it off.”
“Edward.” Her tone should have been enough for him to let it go and realize it was a lost cause, that she wouldn’t be buying the dress, but he elected not to hear the slight inflectional change.
She huffed her way back into the dressing room and carefully removed the dress. “Aren’t you supposed to be looking for something for yourself to wear for your new guy?” There was no answer from Edward and when she had finished putting her clothes back on, went looking for him. He stood by the register, waiting.
“Will that be all?” the clerk asked her. Jane was quick to hand the dress over and nodded.
“No, we’ll take these, too.” Edward placed a knee high pair of black boots on the counter. They were beautiful, elegant. Lace up the front, a short curved heel. She loved them immediately.
“Edward, really,” she whispered heatedly, ignoring the curious glance from the young woman behind the counter.
“These will be all.”
Jane knew when she was beat. She walked away, all the way out the door, letting Edward do what he did best. Have his way.
The air was crisp, cold, tolerable. She liked the dry air, was happy there was no wind and that it wasn’t snowing. “Well, this has been a huge success.”
Jane turned to Edward as he joined her on the sidewalk. “What has?”
“Ah yes.” She started walking. “Where are your purchases for your man?”
“Oh I got them the other day.”
“Meaning this was all a ploy again, a set up.”
“I didn’t set you up with anyone other than me. I thought a morning out would be a nice change.”
“I don’t like that you’ve taken to lying to me.”
“If you liked the truth, I wouldn’t have to.”
Have a great day!