Abigail Ames never considered herself brave, especially after the death of her husband in a motorcycle accident that left her a struggling single mother. But two years later, and with a new career, Abby chances a better life for herself and her young son by leaping toward a fresh start in Tallulah Cove. While she hopes to one day find a safe and stable man, she never expects he might just be sitting on the bar stool next to her after a defunct girls’ night out.
Ben Davenport isn’t a man accustomed to running away, but relocating to Tallulah Cove to open a second branch of his business is a good way to escape his haunted past and lingering ghosts of his decades-old mistake. No longer believing in his own happily ever after, he’s surprised by a chance encounter with a pretty brunette and the yearning she awakens with the delivery of the single most intriguing line ever.
Their growing attraction seems unstoppable, until the past revisits like a sucker punch ready to take at aim at their happiness and his budding relationship with the boy he’s come to love as his own.everything he is demands he step up and help her toward peace? Can Maggie’s frozen heart ever learn to trust a man again after the husband who was supposed to love and cherish her left her broken and terrified of the world around her?
What readers are saying…
“Ben is the hot as hell older guy who meets Abby, the younger mom of a 4 year old little boy.
Damn, their times together were so explosive and hot! I really did not want their story to end. These were great characters that grabbed me right from the start. I honestly loved everything about this book and could not put it down. I could definitely see myself reading this again and again.” -Chris Cox
“A good quick summer beach read. There are some heavier moments but they do not bring you down, just help you become more emotionally involved in the story line. I will tell you that this book does involve a silver fox, a cute little boy and lots of hot chemistry! I could easily see this as the start of a great small town romance series.” -Emily
“Tallulah Heartbeat has courage, candor and heart. Casey Hagen never misses the chance to state the obvious while shaking up the soul. Abigail and Ben are strangers that share a common goal. Hurt by life, scarred by heartache, starting over seems like a good idea. Single mother, Abigail has let tragedy rule her life for far too long. A fresh start has her finally finding her voice, just as fate steals away with her heart. Ben is her new beginning, but his demons could end their happily ever after before it even gets off the ground. Heart, heat and honesty make way for a compelling romance.” -Isha Coleman
“Hey, you’re back,” the bartender from last week said.
“Yup, I’m celebrating.” She smiled and sat up a little straighter. It was her night, and he might well be the only company she had.
“Oh yeah, what are you celebrating?” he said as he laid a menu before her.
“Making it through my probationary period at work and a hefty raise.”
“Nice! Congratulations.” He leaned on the bar, his elbows almost touching hers. “So, what do you want to celebrate with?”
“You know what? I think I’ll start with the Pink Starburst Cosmo.”
“Nice choice. Will anyone be joining you for dinner tonight, or are you all alone?”
Cute. He was back to flirting, but she was starting to think that maybe that’s all it was. Nothing he had any intention of acting on. Or he had a brain injury and didn’t remember the debt and son.
“She’s with me,” a familiar voice said from behind her.
Her senses went on high alert. When Ben’s hand slid along the skin of her upper back and cupped her shoulder, goosebumps broke out over her skin. She felt that touch go straight to places that hadn’t been pleasured by a man in far too long.
“Well, I’ll get another menu then,” the bartender said, straightening and dialing his smile back to professional politeness. Another menu popped up, but she didn’t notice if the bartender brought it. She only saw Ben sliding onto the stool next to her.
“Hi, Abby.” He said it with a smile and a nod, putting a bit of distance between them.
“Ben,” she said, raising a brow at him.
“He likes you,” Ben said with a glare aimed at the bartender.
“And I like him,” she shot back.
A line formed between his eyes as his dark eyebrows slashed low. “Really? Should I leave you two alone?”
“Now, don’t go getting snippy on me. I came here tonight hoping I would run into you,” she said, her lips twitching.
“Is that right? Why me?”
“Why not you? You fascinate me.” She raised her glass and took a sip of the sweet Cosmo that arrived when they weren’t paying attention. “And I’m celebrating. I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather do that with.”
He leaned forward and wiped the moisture from her lower lip with his rough thumb.
Her eyes drifted shut and before she could think about what she was doing, her tongue darted out and brushed his thumb. “Mmmm,” she purred.
He brought his wet thumb to his mouth and licked off the moisture. “Shall we take this to a table?” he murmured.
“Come on.” He took her drink and her hand and led her to a corner booth. He waited while she slid in, and he slid in beside her.
Heat radiated from him and washed over her. He’d dressed differently tonight. He still wore blue jeans, but instead of the t-shirt and flannel, he wore a black silk dress shirt that shimmered in the candlelight flickering in the center of the table.
She brushed her fingers over the fabric, right over his chest, and bit her lip. She didn’t know who she was tonight, but she was not Blake’s mother. She wasn’t Ken’s widow. She wasn’t the newly appointed dental hygienist at Tallulah Cove Dental.
She was a flesh and blood woman who had gone too long without the company of a man. “Is this the part where we go down a road that changes us both forever?” she said.
He cupped her cheek and gave her a sad smile. “I don’t know about you, but I’ve been down one too many of those already.”
“Me too,” she whispered, leaning into his hand. She couldn’t help herself.
“We’re not going to let it stop us, are we?” he muttered.
She turned her mouth to his palm and bit down on the meaty part of his hand, making him hiss. “Not tonight. Tomorrow is a different day.”