Trouble in Loveland by Jennifer Peel
What does dating the boss + meddling ex-wife + most adorable three-year-old ever equal? Trouble in Loveland.
At seventeen, Charlee Jensen packed her bags and left her beloved hometown of Loveland, swearing she would never have anything to do with the men that left her heartbroken: her father, the man that taught her heroes can fall; and Ryan Carter, her much older neighbor and teenage crush.
Now eight years later, Charlee has two degrees she never wanted and no job prospects, forcing her to swallow her pride and come home to work for her father’s accounting firm—the same firm where newly divorced Ryan Carter is now a partner.
But trouble starts to stir when Ryan realizes the girl next door is all grown up and completely smitten with his adorable three-year-old. Ryan finds it hard to resist his beautiful, yet annoyingly charming neighbor and coworker, but is torn between his feelings and trying to keep the peace with his ex-wife, the mother of his child. It’s a recipe for trouble. Will Charlee and Ryan find the formula for success?
Praise for Trouble in Loveland
“Jennifer Peel’s writing captures you from the start and pulls you in. Trouble in Loveland is a fantastic book and was the perfect escape that I look for when I read. It has it all! Drama, humor, and romance. Highly recommend!” – Becky Monson, Author of The Spinster Series ★★★★★
“I absolutely loved this book! I just discovered Jennifer Peel, and I’m so glad I did. Her writing is fun, the dialogue witty, and her character development brilliant. Trouble in Loveland is the third book I’ve read by this author and it won’t be my last. I am definitely a new fan!!” Cindy Roland Anderson,Author of Under a Georgia Moon ★★★★★
Trouble in Loveland Excerpt
My heart pounded erratically as Ryan looked up at me and smiled. The butterflies were beyond excited and swearing like sailors. I bit my lip nervously and watched Ryan walk my way. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I knew it didn’t mean anything to him, but not to sound cheesy, it was like a dream come true for me. All I needed was some fog behind him as he sauntered over to me.
He held out his hand as soon as he approached me. “Will you give me the pleasure of dancing with me?” I think that was the sexiest thing I’d ever heard in my life.
I couldn’t talk very well, which was saying something. I always had something to say. I nodded my head and held out my hand, that I prayed wasn’t sweaty. Before he led me away, I tossed the bouquet to Amy, who wore a sly grin.
As we made it to the middle of the floor, I heard the DJ say, “Now don’t they make a lovely couple? Maybe there will be another love connection tonight.” I think I turned about ten shades of red. Ryan didn’t seem fazed by it as he pulled me to him and held me firmly, but gently. His hand rested on my mid-back. With his other hand he took my hand, and instead of holding it out, he brought it in, more intimately, against our bodies. Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” began to play. Ryan was obviously an experienced dancer as his steps kept in time with the rhythm of my new favorite song.
Ryan’s eyes seared into mine. “I was hoping I would get to dance with you tonight.”
“Yes, but you’ve been quite popular.” He pulled back a tad and looked down at my dress. “You look very …”
“Please don’t say grown up.”
He smiled and shook his head. “I wasn’t going to say that, I was going to say …” he tried to think of something.
“You were going to say it, weren’t you?”
He sighed. “Charlee, you really know how to make a guy feel inadequate, don’t you?”
“Don’t be. I find I like it.”
He nodded his head. “I also find you to be very …” he hesitated.
“Beautiful and annoyingly charming.”
“How can somebody be annoying and charming at the same time?”
“See what I mean?” He held me close.
Another Timeless Single Romance! Join Jennifer Peel for MORE TROUBLE IN LOVELAND, a companion story to the beloved romance TROUBLE IN LOVELAND.
Charlee Jensen-Carter has been looking forward to her first Christmas with her new husband, Ryan, and her adorable stepson for weeks. Not only is her dad tying the knot, but she’s looking forward to two weeks of no exes, no drama, and especially no trouble. At least that’s what she thinks.
First, she gets talked into wearing red hooker heels again. Next, she finds herself trying to save her dad’s wedding. And if that isn’t bad enough, more than one ex shows up, and she’s suddenly in the middle of more trouble than she ever bargained for.
Will she ever find the right moment to give Ryan the best Christmas present ever? Or will her Christmas hopes and dreams die a fiery death in this comical holiday tale?
Praise for More Trouble in Loveland
“Are you in the mood for a Christmassy book full of love, laughter and swoon worthy moments? Then look no further than More Trouble in Loveland! It’s the perfect afternoon read!” – Kathy Jo, KJ’s Book Nook ★★★★★
“Jennifer Peel’s holiday-themed contemporary romantic comedy novel, More Trouble in Loveland, is a humorous and enjoyable tale . . . highly recommended.” Jack Magnus, Readers Favorite ★★★★★
“I’ve been eagerly awaiting a return trip to Loveland with some of my favorite characters. Oh how I’ve missed Charlee and her very active, sighing and swearing butterflies! Even in the midst of heaping family drama, Charlee and Ryan’s love is the stuff happy sighs are made of.” – Aimee Brown, Getting Your Read On ★★★★★
More Trouble in Loveland Excerpts
Buried beneath more of my mementos were those dang, strappy high heels. Why was I unearthing these? If Krissy thought I was wearing them again, she was crazy. I didn’t care what the boots looked like that came with the costume; they had to be better than the hooker heels. I was only bringing them so Krissy wouldn’t whine.
Ryan grinned at the shoes when I emerged from the basement door in our kitchen. “One of my favorite memories is of you wearing those in your cutoffs. I wouldn’t remind a repeat.”
I remembered that day too. I had been so embarrassed Ryan caught me while I practiced walking in them for Krissy’s wedding. “If memory serves me correctly, you laughed at me.”
He pulled me to him, and, thankfully, his breath was clean and smelled normal, like honey. “I only laughed to keep away thoughts of wanting to ravishmy partner’s daughter.”
He brushed my lips. “You have no idea how hard it was to resist you.”
“You seemed to manage.” I loved teasing him.
He groaned against my mouth. “You’ve obliterated all my defenses.”
“Is that so?” I let the heels drop so I could use my hands for better things. And I was just about to until—
Being a newlywed with a child was tricky business. Ryan sighed but smiled. “I’ll take a rain check.” He had plenty to cash in.
Excerpt Two –
Before I finished up the case and psychotherapy notes, I pulled out my phone and called my favorite number. “I love you.” I didn’t even let him say hello.
“Rough sessions today?”
“How did you know?”
“Because I know you.”
The butterflies in my stomach still erupted when he talked to me like that. Some of them had been on a 24/7 bender ever since we were married six months ago.
“I could move some meetings around and come have lunch with you,” Ryan offered.
“Sounds perfect, but I have my last study group in an hour. I can’t wait until finals are over at the end of this week. And then we get Josh all to ourselves for two weeks. It’s going to be perfect.”
“Even with all the wedding chaos?”
“Thanks for reminding me.” My dad and Felicity were finally getting married on Christmas Eve. Their love affair had been a series of ups and downs. They had planned on getting married in May, but they broke up in April, only to rekindle in June at my surprise wedding. Summer was mostly good for them. The beginning of fall was iffy, but supposedly this was a done deal. I wasn’t so sure, but I was trying to keep my personal and semi-professional feelings out of it. I loved Felicity. I loved my dad. But they had more trouble in Loveland than most couples, as my dad liked to say. Not unlike Danica and Jake, my dad and Felicity had insecurities too. Unfortunately, a lot of them were fueled by Felicity’s mom. That dear needed to get a new hobby and stop bashing my dad. But I couldn’t think about it right now. I had finals, a husband who adored me, and a stepson I loved to pieces.
“I’m sorry. Take a breath, Charlee. I love you. And if you aren’t too tired tonight after Josh’s Christmas concert, I’ll show you exactly how much.”
The butterflies were now swearing. “I’ll do my best. Sorry I’ve been so exhausted lately, you know it’s not you, right?”
“I’ve been wondering,” he teased. “I know you’ve had a lot on your plate lately.”
My schedule had been insane. Between school, practicum, wedding, Ryan, Josh, Victoria (Ryan’s ex-wife), my best friend Krissy and her baby Taylar Ann (Krissy reneged on naming the baby after me. She went with her mom instead. What could I say to that?), I was wiped out. I fell asleep every night as soon as my head hit the pillow. I was being a pitiful newlywed, which was a shame because I loved every part of Ryan, and he was a rock star in the bedroom. “You’re always my main course.”
“I love it when you talk dirty to me like that.”
I laughed. “I love you. I’ll see you tonight.”
“You have no idea how much I look forward to it.”
Believe me, I did.
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Author Jennifer Peel
Jennifer Peel is the award-winning bestselling author of the Dating by Design and Women of Merryton series, as well as several other contemporary romances. Though she lives and breathes writing, her first love is her family. She is the mother of three amazing kiddos and has recently added the title of mother-in-law, with the addition of two terrific sons-in-law. She’s been married to her best friend and partner in crime for a lot longer than seems possible. Some of her favorite things are late night talks, beach vacations, the mountains, pink bubble gum ice cream, tours of model homes, and Southern living. She can frequently be found with her laptop on, fingers typing away, indulging in chocolate milk, and writing out the stories that are constantly swirling through her head.
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