We Have an Excerpt: Once in a Lifetime

We Have an Excerpt:

Once In A Lifetime
Aubrey got a look at the man she’d inadvertently drenched and stopped breathing. Oh, God. Had she really thought her day couldn’t get any worse? Why would she tempt fate by even thinking that? Because of course things had gotten worse. They always did.
Ben McDaniel slowly stood up from his barstool, dripping vodka from his hair, eyelashes, nose… He was six feet plus of hard muscles and brute strength on a body that didn’t carry a single extra ounce of fat on him. For the past five years, he’d been in and out of a variety of Third World countries designing and building water systems with the Army Corp of Engineers. His last venture had been for the Department of Defense in Iraq, which Aubrey only knew because Lucky Harbor’s Facebook page was good as gospel.
He swiped his face with his arm, deceptively chill and laid-back.
In truth, he was about as badass as they came.
Aubrey should know, she’d seen him in action. But she managed to meet his gaze. Cool, casual even. One had to be with Ben, the man could spot a weakness a mile away. “I’m sorry,” she said.
“Are you?”
She felt herself flush. He’d always seemed to see right through her. And she was pretty sure he’d never cared for her. He had good reason for that, she reminded herself. He just didn’t know the half of it. “Yes, I am sorry,” she said. Her heart was pounding so loudly she was surprised she could hear herself speak. “Are you 

He ran his fingers through a sexy disorder of sun-streaked brown hair. His eyes were the same color, light milk chocolate marbled with gold caramel. It was hard to make such a warm-colored gaze seem hard, but Ben managed it with no effort at all. “Need to work on your aim,” he said.

Poor Ben's all wet

Curvy Women: Why Are We Doing This To Ourselves?

Why are we doing 

this to ourselves?

I found this piece on Pinterest and thought it was interesting.
We are a nation obsessed with weight and not with health.  We should be supportive of one another as human beings not tear each other down.
Of all we as woman should support other woman not destroy each other’s self-esteem.   We tend to be catty, mean and vengeful toward each other.  When we should be kindest to each other so that we can show our daughters, nieces, sisters, mothers, and grandmothers how to have a positive body image, self-confidence, independence, to know her worth as a woman, and to love themselves.
Instead we are looking at anorexia and compulsive overeating causing obesity in our young women of today.
Media does play a big part of it yes but we as women have to stand in line and take some of that on our shoulders.
How many times have you stood at your mirror and said, “Oh, I wish my thighs weren’t so big.” Or “Man my butt has gotten so big!”  It’s bad enough we think it but we say it out loud so before you say it make sure you look around you and see what ears are listening not just at home but at the department store or Aunt Martha’s too.
We are all in this together Health not weight.

Amazing side-by-side photo comparison: averaged-sized woman hugging a fashion model

This above photo from a Plus Model Magazine has gone majorly viral with it’s side-by-sidecomparison between Katya Zharkova, a US size 12 (who is actually smaller than the average sized American woman, who wears a size 14) hugging a rail-thin fashion model with the quote “Most runway models meet the Body Mass Index physical criteria for anorexia.” It should be noted that anorexia is primarily a mental health issue, but it’s true that most models fall below (sometimes well below) what is considered a healthy Body Mass Index.
The editorial the photo was featured in included a call to action for consumers to voice their opinion, and demand fashion models that are the size of real women (or at least in the “healthy” BMI range, which is between 18.5–24.9. You can click here to play around with a BMI calculator to figure out what that means, but basically if a woman is 5’8″ and 110 lbs, she has a BMI of 16.7, which is WAAAAY below healthy.)
Here’s some statistics from Plus Model Magazine:
-Twenty years ago the average fashion model weighed 8% less than the average woman. Today, she weighs 23% less.
- Ten years ago plus-size models averaged between size 12 and 18. Today the need for size diversity within the plus-size modeling industry continues to be questioned. The majority of plus-sizemodels on agency boards are between a size 6 and 14, while the customers continue to express their dissatisfaction.
- Most runway models meet the Body Mass Index physical criteria for Anorexia.
- 50% of women wear a size 14 or larger, but most standard clothing outlets cater to sizes 14 or smaller.
My opinion on this: I personally don’t have a problem with models having more “ideal” bodies than most of us, but there should be more toned models sporting healthy weights, as well as a wider range of sizes in models. Right now there seem to be two categories: mainstream models who are much smaller than average, some even to the point of being unhealthy, and “plus-sized” models, who are usually regulated to the fringe. All women and body types needs to be represented, especially the under-represented types in the healthy range. Being overweight shouldn’t necessarily be celebrated, because it isunhealthy, but being too thin is also unhealthy, and that’s extremely over-celebrated. Girls and women should have a more healthy “ideal” example made for them, which might ultimately result in less cases of eating disorders (including binge eating disorders that can lead to obesity.) And yes, as some commenter are pointing out, a size 14 (the average US size), for most women falls above the healthy BMI range. Size 14 may be normal in the U.S., but it’s often not healthy. Of course healthy can be different sizes for different women, factors to consider include Height, Weight, lean muscle mass vs. fat percentage, and health indicators like blood pressure, triglycerides, diabetes, etc.
Regardless above model Katya Zharkova is definitely gorgeous.
How does the above photo make you feel? Women, do you think your size is under represented in fashion? Fellas, what kind of models would you like to see?

Once In A Lifetime Book Tour With Excerpt & Jill Shalvis Here On Feb. 22

We Will Be Having
Jill Shalvis

Feb. 22

ONCE IN A LIFETIME by Jill Shalvis (February 18, 2014; Grand Central Publishing Mass Market; $6.00)
After a wrenching loss, Ben McDaniel tried to escape his grief by working in dangerous, war-torn places like Africa and the Middle East. Now he's back in his hometown and face-to-face with Aubrey Wellington, the hot-as-hell woman who is trouble with a capital T. Family and friends insist she's not the one to ease his pain, but Aubrey sparks an intense desire that gives Ben hope for the future.

Determined to right the wrongs of her past, Aubrey is working hard to make amends. But by far, the toughest challenge to her plan is sexy, brooding Ben - even though he has absolutely no idea what she's done . . .

Can this unlikely couple defy the odds and win over the little town of Lucky Harbor?

A few snowflakes floated lazily out of the low, dense clouds.  One block over, the Pacific Ocean carved into the harbor, which was lined by three-story high, rugged bluffs teeming with the untouched forestland that was the Olympic Mountains.  Around him, the oak-lined streets were strung with white lights, shining brightly through the morning gloom.  Peaceful.  Still. 
       A month ago, he’d been in South America, elbows deep in a project rebuilding a water system for the war-torn land.  Before that, he’d been in Haiti.  And before that, Africa.  And before that … Indonesia?  Hell, it might have been another planet for all he remembered.  It was all rolling together.
        He went to places after disaster hit, whether man or nature made, and he saw people at their very worst moments.  Sometimes he changed lives, sometimes he improved them, but at some point over the past five years, he’d become numb to it.  So much so that when he’d gone to check out a new jobsite at the wrong place, only to have the right place blown to bits by a suicide bomber just before he got there, he’d finally realized something.
       He didn’t always have to be the guy on the front line.  He could design and plan water systems for devastated countries from anywhere.  Hell, he could become a consultant instead.  Five years of wading knee deep in crap, both figuratively and literally, was enough for anyone.  He didn’t want to be in the right hellhole next time.
       So he’d come home, with no idea what was next.


It was dark outside when she got back to the Book & Bean, and she stopped short just outside the door. She’d locked up when she left and turned off the lights.
But the door was unlocked now, and the lights on. She went still, then pulled out her phone and dialed 9-1-1. She didn’t hit send but kept her thumb hovered over call. Taking a step inside, she paused. “Hello?”
The low, slightly rough voice wasn’t what had her heart pumping. That honor went to the fact that there was a man on a ladder in the back of her store.
He was in jeans with a tool belt slung low on his hips, his t-shirt clinging to him. He seemed a little irritated, a little sweaty, and just looking at him Aubrey got a whole lot hot and bothered in places that had no business being hot and bothered by this man at all. “What are you doing in here?” she asked.
“I work here.”
“What are you talking about? Get out.”
“Sorry, Sunshine.” He wasn’t even looking at her, but using some sort of long, claw-like tool to pull down a ceiling tile above the wall she’d been working on. And his tool worked way better than hers.
His movements were agile and surprisingly graceful for a guy his size. Not that he was bulky in any way. Nope, that tall, built body was all lean, tough muscle, and it screamed power. And with each subtle movement, his body made it clear that it knew exactly what to do with all that power. “The owner of this building hired me,” he said. “Said you were making a mess of things because your pride was bigger than your wallet.”
This caught her completely off guard, both the insult and the information. “My uncle owns this building,” she said.
He smiled thinly. “Yep. Happy Birthday.”
“It’s not my birthday.”
“Then happy you’ve-got-a-great-uncle day.”


“You’re incredible, Ben, you know that? You’re an insensitive, first-class jerk, and–”
He leaned in. “And what?” he asked, voice dangerously low.
“And…” Stymied at her ridiculous and constant reaction to him, Aubrey put her hands to his chest to give him another shove, but somehow got her wires crossed and she fisted his shirt instead.
“Dare me,” he said softly.
Oh, how she hated how well he knew her. “I dare you to kiss me,” she whispered, and then to make sure he did, she put her mouth on his first… 


LET’S WELCOME SHIRLEY JUMP   AUTHOR OF: Rad-Reader:  How did you come up with this concept for this book? Sh...