After the divorce from hell, Jenna Morgan swears off men. But could the town “bad boy” Nate, be the one to make her break that oath?
Freeing herself from the constraints of her ex, she decides to do the one thing she always wanted to but was never allowed; get a tattoo.
Nate Peterson is the town bad boy and owner of the Blank Canvas tattoo parlour. Walking into his shop could change her life forever.
At a speed-dating event, Jenna meets the business-savvy lawyer, Levi. Surely it couldn’t hurt to go on one date, with both men?
Conflicted by the choice, she sees and feels herself falling for the boy from the wrong side of the tracks.
After a couple of crazy months together, a tragedy tears them apart. Nate finds himself pushing everyone away, including Jenna.
Realising his momentous mistake, Nate wants to win her back. But can he earn her trust again? Did he destroy everything he wanted but never knew he needed?
Will fate help push the pair back together or will it tear them asunder?
I live in the UK and am an avid bookworm. My first real memory of reading something I fell in love with was The Hobbit. In my teenage years, I became addicted to Point Horror books like RL Stine’s The Boyfriend, but also enjoyed lighter reads like What Katy Did and What Katy Did Next.
Over the years I have come to realise that I am a bit of an OCD freak about books. They have to be in perfect condition without the slightest bit of damage.
I have been a book reviewer for the last few years and a book hoarder for a LOT longer. You can NEVER have too many books! My shelves are bulging and overflowing but I always want “just one more book”.
I am an author of contemporary romance and MM romance and had my first book published in 2013. My PA has claimed ‘dibs’ on all the men I write and refuses to share.
As the needle is pressed to my skin, I suck in a sharp breath, bracing myself for the pain. But when it doesn’t come, I relax and enjoy the feeling in a way I didn’t know was possible.
Nate looks happy, like this is something he was born to do. And maybe he was. I know nothing about him. Not that I would mind getting to know him better, in more ways than one.
“So, Nate, how long have you worked here?” I find myself asking, wanting to know more about the alluring man with his hands on me.
“I’ve been here for about eight years now. I found this place empty and knew without a doubt it was perfect for my vision. I started working at Tattoo Envy when I was eighteen and just an apprentice. I honed my craft until I felt I was ready to open my own place when I was around twenty-eight. To be honest, I would have started out on my own before then, but I really loved the staff that had become like a family to me. I didn’t want to leave them. But they urged me to spread my wings and that’s when I started Blank Canvas. I had learned the business side of things from Hannah, the woman that owned Tattoo Envy, and so I had all the necessary skills to start this place. I just didn’t know if it would take off. I’m glad it did though.”
I hadn’t been expecting him to divulge so much information and, as he realised this himself, he apologised for oversharing. Smiling at him, I told him apologies weren’t necessary.
“Is there a story behind this?” he asks as he nods his head at where the wings are starting to really take shape.
“You know what they say about rising from the ashes,” I start. “Well, I guess it’s true. I’m making my fresh start. I should have done it a long time ago, but I didn’t possess the courage. Or at least I didn’t think I did. This tattoo represents me being stronger than I ever knew. I guess you could say the ashes and flames of the design represent Lee, my ex-husband. And the phoenix is me, rising from the past to a beautiful new future.”
There, I’d overshared in reciprocation. Though I didn’t admit Lee’s real name wasn’t in fact Lee, or Douchebag, or Cheating Asshole, or Serial Shagger. No, I’d kept that information to myself. Stanley Eugene “Douchebag” Mason was a part of my past I’d rather not discuss with the hot, muscular, tattooed guy with his hands on me. He’s not a therapist after all, just your run of the mill tattooist. Though I’m not sure anything about Nate could be classed as “run of the mill”.
“I know the feeling. And to think I almost married her. Thank goodness for small mercies.”
His statement has me curious, but his gaze collides with mine and all the air leaves my lungs in a rush. There’s something like hunger in his gaze as his eyes roam over me. I cannot get entangled with any man, much less this incredibly hot specimen. I’ll end up hurt and my heart can’t take any more right now. I can sure dream about the hot guy who took my virginity though—ink virginity, that is.
My best friend, Brogan, has told me I have what she calls “virgin skin”. I laughed at the notion, but I guess it’s true.
“I did marry mine,” I reply after a pause. “I was young and naïve. There’s no chance of me making that mistake again. Hurt me once, shame on you. Hurt me twice, shame on me too. I couldn’t stick around for him to hurt me again. There are only so many chances you can give a person and, while I’m a believer in second chances, I don’t believe in twenty-second chances, you know?!”
Nate looks at me with something akin to pity in his gaze, but all traces of that vanish when he looks me square in the eye.
“I’m sorry he hurt you. I may not know who he is or what he did, but I do know if I had a woman like you, I wouldn’t want to hurt her for the world.”
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