Music is invaluable to me when I'm working on a book. Though I don’t typically listen to music while writing since it breaks my concentration, I find myself building a strong play-list of songs for each love story I create—which I listen to whenever I’m not writing. This playlist is made up of the songs that most remind me of my central couple—so in effect, I stay in their world even when I’m not at my computer. Best times are usually when I'm driving or on the treadmill, or maybe when I'm cooking. It's a head-space thing. I want to stay immersed with my central couple, from the beginning of their story, right up through to the HEA. By having my playlist for “off hours,” I'm always able to keep the book in the forefront of my mind.
I'd like to share with you my playlist for my new book, Impulse, as well as reveal the “signature song” for each of my books (every couple I've written about has one! These are the songs that most remind me of my hero + heroine).
Cady + Mick signature song: “Marvin Gaye” (Charlie Puth/Meghan Trainor). Whenever I hear this song, I always think of the scene in which Cady and Mick dance...
Runner-up: “Let me Love you” (Justin Bieber)
More songs on Impulse love-playlist:
“Don't Let Me Down” (The Chainsmokers)
“I Need Your Love” (Calvin Harris/Ellie Goulding)
“Summer” (Calvin Harris)
“Cake By The Ocean” (DNCE)
“Never Say Never” (The Fray)
“Hold On We're Going Home” (Drake)
“This is What You Came For” (Calvin Harris/Rhianna)
“We Don't Talk Anymore” (Charlie Puth/Selena Gomez)
“Sorry” (Justin Bieber)
“What It Takes” (Aerosmith)
“Santa Monica” (Everclear)
Constructing Us ~ Book 1 of Attraction Series
Andy + Tragan signature song: Burn by Ellie Goulding
Runner-up: “Ho Hey” (The Lumineers)
A Hot Winter ~ Book 2 of Attraction Series
Emma + Matt signature song: “Am I Wrong” (Nico & Vinz)
Runner-up: “Waves” (Mr. Probz)
Sky High ~ Book 3 of Attraction Series
Sky + Jamie signature song: “Riptide” (Vance Joy)
Runner-up: “Afterlife” (Ingrid Michaelson)
I hope you will check out my new book Impulse http://amzn.to/2eOCTor , and if you haven't already, read my “Attraction Series,” starting with Constructing Us: http://amzn.to/2fssPTe
Thank you + happy holidays!!
Genre: New Adult Romance
Date of Publication: 10/5/16
Number of pages: 360
Word Count: 86K
**Standalone novel, NO cliffhanger. Contains explicit/steamy content intended for mature readers.**
I couldn't believe my luck, seeing Cady Killoren at the bar and finding out she no longer had a boyfriend. Then ending up at her place later that night... She had her guard up, but there was no denying what was happening between us. I wasn't sure how to play this, I hadn't exactly been honest with her. I only knew I wanted more of her...and then things got complicated.
It was one impulsive night--totally unlike me! I can't even blame it on the drinks. That night with Mick was pure chemistry. I never would've guessed that the next time we met it would be in a crowded restaurant, being introduced by my dad! And I would find out that everything I thought I knew about Mick was a lie. There are a lot of reasons why I need to resist Mick Croft... Easier said than done.
“So, in what world are you the black sheep?” Mick asked now, and motioned to the bartender for another beer.
“How come you can’t see me as a black sheep?” Cady asked curiously.
“It’s not possible,” Mick said simply and nodded toward her empty glass. “By the way, want another one?”
“Yes. Pumpkin Pie-tini, please.”
Mick grinned. “The hard stuff.” After ordering her drink, he went back to his original point. “I already know you’re extremely smart.”
Cady blinked at him. “Wait, why do you say that?”
Damn, that was right; thanks to Quinn’s big lie, Cady had no idea that Mick really went to BU. And so did Quinn, but the guy had a pathological need to bullshit people.
“I can tell,” Mick said quickly, wanting to tell Cady the truth—but it just didn’t feel like the right moment.
“See, it’s like this,” she began. “My dad’s a physicist. My mom is an archaeologist. And my older brother is an entomologist.”
“Wow, that’s a lot of ists.”
She laughed. “I know, right?”
“Entomologist, isn’t that…?”
“Bugs,” Cady said flatly and her face pinched kind of cutely as she emphasized, “Bugs. My brother understands bugs on a profound level.”
“Interesting,” Mick lied.
She took another sip. “Yep. He’s already published four papers. His piece on the Prehistoric Icelandic Valley Beetle was his breakout work,” she explained offhandedly.
“Really,” Mick said, not sure if she was messing with him at first. “That’s impressive.”
“Isn’t it, though?” Cady agreed, sounding wistful. She sighed. That was when Mick realized she was being deadly serious. “My mom is on a dig in Greece, looking for buried treasures. My dad works with equations that are paragraphs-long and probably explain the universe. And my older brother is blowing the lid off bugs. Figuratively speaking, I mean.”
With a gruff laugh, Mick said, “Yeah, I’d hope so.”
“So that’s why I’m the black sheep, Mick,” Cady went on, blinking at him with feeling, and it was hard not to notice those pretty blue eyes of hers, which were the same color as her sweater. “I’m graduating soon and God knows why, but I have no passion for a career. Passion,” Cady repeated for emphasis. “Passion seems to be my number one problem.”
“Passion?” he echoed. “Really?” Mick eyed her suggestively now. He had a feeling they were circling closer to the truth.
When Cady’s gaze caught his, a blush came to her cheeks. “I don’t mean passion like that,” she insisted—but Mick didn’t quite believe her. His mind pulled up his old fantasy that she might be repressed. After all, even her flirting tonight had been restrained, tentative. His cock stirred as he considered what Cady might be like behind closed doors, once she really got going with someone. Sometimes the most buttoned-up girls were the hottest in bed; it was like they saved it up or something.
He found himself getting excited now and grinning almost wickedly at her. The way that Cady averted her eyes—but checked back with him from beneath her lashes—and then the way she couldn’t suppress a grin herself…
Well, it told Mick that she knew where his mind was going, and hers was going there, too.
Suddenly Cady’s friend and Quinn sidled up to them again. “Hey,” Torie said, giving Cady a little tug on the arm. “Want to go? Quinn just heard about a party on South Street.”
“Oh…no, I don’t want to go to a party,” Cady said, and Mick was relieved to hear that.
Her friend pouted for a second, before saying, “Come on, we’ve exhausted this scene.”
“South Street parties are always over-hyped,” Mick threw in.
Quinn disputed that. “No, man, Terrence texted me, said it’s blowing up.”
“Um, listen, Tor, you can go,” Cady offered. “But can you drop me off at home first?”
With an apologetic wince, Torie said, “Wellll, it’s toward Brighton, so it’s in the opposite direction. But that's okay, I—”
“No, no,” Cady insisted, obviously not wanting to mess up Torie's fun. “I’ll just take a cab, no worries,” Cady assured her. “Have fun.”
“Are you sure?” Torie said, putting on her coat.
“Of course. I can take a cab,” Cady was saying as she slid off her bar stool and Torie handed her her coat. Mick intercepted it. As he slipped it over Cady’s shoulders, she glanced up at him and gave him a smile that was somewhere between coy and shy. His heart pounded harder. This attraction was mutual; this was happening, he could feel it.
When Torie gave Cady a quick hug goodbye, Mick could’ve sworn he heard her whisper to Cady: “Have fun tonight.” Then she departed Donovan Shay’s with Quinn.
Immediately, Cady and Mick followed their friends’ lead and headed outside.
While Torie and Quinn strode toward the side street where she’d parked her car, Mick walked with Cady to the corner. “There are always taxis stopping at this intersection,” he mentioned.
“I technically can get a taxi myself,” Cady said, shivering. “If I couldn’t do that, I’d really be hopeless.”
“Of course,” Mick agreed. “I just wanted to walk out with you.” Predictably, the night had grown colder, and now the wind was biting. Mick boldly put his hands on Cady’s upper arms and gave them a rub through her jacket. “Let’s warm you up,” he said.
Appearing cautious, Cady asked, “After I go, are you going to meet Quinn and your friends at that party?”
“No. Definitely not.”
“Not your scene?”
“Nope,” he told her truthfully.
“Yeah, actually I’m surprised your friend, Quinn, wants to go,” Cady mentioned. “Those parties are usually BU and Boston College people. Since he’s twenty-four…well, I would think he’d be bored hanging out with college students, that’s all.”
“Quinn’s very immature,” Mick said—also the truth. “Listen, Cady, there’s something I want to say…”
Before he managed to tell her the truth, he got distracted by Cady reaching up and placing her hand on his chest. She did so tentatively, as though she wasn’t totally comfortable or used to making the first move, but wanted to anyway. The last thing he wanted was for her to rethink it, so he encouraged her, bringing his hands to her waist. She took in a quick breath, bit her lower lip, pulled in closer…
His pulse sped up and his chest tightened as she curled the fabric of his shirt into her fingers, silently drawing him in. The action sent a signal straight to his cock.
“This is probably a mistake,” Cady whispered, obviously trying to talk herself out of what she wanted.
“It doesn’t feel like a mistake,” Mick murmured huskily.
“It’s just…” she began, her soft voice drifting off for a moment as the wind loudly tousled the trees. Mick waited, not sure where she was going with this—and definitely not expecting her to say: “It’s just that I have no fun.”
After a careful pause, he said, “Are you saying that you want to have fun?”
She dropped her eyes toward the sidewalk, but clutched his shirt a little tighter. “Yes.”
He could see a shy grin tugging at the corner of her mouth, so he slid a hand under her jaw to tilt her face up. When their eyes met, Cady gazed at him for a moment, almost fascinated, then murmured, “Let’s just kiss first and see how it is.”
He might have been mildly amused by her awkward seduction style—if only she didn’t have him so aroused instead. “Sure,” Mick agreed, stepping even closer and lowering his head. Soon both hands were on his chest, gripping the front of his shirt, as their mouths came together…
About the Author:
C.J. Lake is a storyteller who is passionate about art, surfing, and skiing/snowboarding. She is the author of Constructing Us, A Hot Winter, Sky High, and Impulse. Residing near the coast of Massachusetts, C.J. is currently working on a new book.
Readers can get in touch via email firstname.lastname@example.org