I am pleased today to welcome best-selling author Lydia Michaels! Her latest release, from Secret Cravings Publishing, is titled FAKING IT.
Sheilagh McCullough has been pretending to be someone else her entire life. When she takes her rebellious act too far, her overbearing brothers decide it’s time for her to grow up and face her future. After six years of procrastination and parties, Sheilagh is finally going to college.
Dr. Alec Devereux is an ethical man, but when Sheilagh McCullough enrolls in his class, his morals as a professor are put to the test. Brilliant, tenacious, and a contradiction to herself in so many ways, Alec is enchanted by his new student and unable to resist temptation. Persistent and logical, Alec unravels the mysterious woman who has captured his heart only to discover the greatest threat to their future might be her past.
A courageous journey of the soul that confronts one woman’s fears of love and embraces the truth in her heart.
“You have no right!”
“Shut up!” the three of them shouted at once.
Her eyes prickled with unshed tears as they drove. Under the passing shadows she saw each one of them staring away from her, fury stamped into their set jaws. She kicked the seat in front of her and Tristan grunted.
After she discovered Luke and Tristan’s affair, Tristan handled her with kid gloves. Sheilagh didn’t want his pity. She was tougher than that. She was a McCullough, for Christ’s sake. She had five crazy brothers and she could hold her own with every single one of them.
The farther they drove out of town, the more self-doubt crept in. “Where are we going?”
No one answered. The commercial storefronts faded away as Kelly turned the SUV onto the highway leading out of town. As they took the jug handle onto the interstate her concern doubled. Their anger was so thick it seemed to siphon the air right out of the car.
Her concern for herself doubled as her eyes rapidly blinked back tears, forcing those telling little spills to stay put where others couldn’t see. Her entire existence focused on hiding those telltale signs of weakness from the world.
She hated that her stupid, childish heart was permanently damaged and her life derailed. Since the day she’d discovered Luke and Tristan, she’d been going at the world like a runaway train, making one poor choice after another and leaving nothing but self-destruction in her wake. It was the only way she knew to control the pain, control herself. But in truth, over the last few years she felt out of control and with every stupid transgression came another reason to hate herself.
She wasn’t sure she’d ever be normal again. She wasn’t breaking hearts, just breaking herself, battering pieces of her broken heart, little by little, with each poor decision.
Suddenly the car swerved. She slammed into Luke and he pushed her off. Gravel spewed under the tires as Kelly tore onto the shoulder and threw the SUV in park.
It was dark and no one said a word. Fear tickled her spine. Why were they there? It was completely dark and eerie and she wondered if this was their version of some kind of confessional.
The sound of their breathing sawed out of their lungs and she waited. Luke, of course, broke the silence. “Are you out of your god damn mind?”
She turned to unleash the fury inside of her. “Oh, shut up, Luke! You have no right to pass judgment on me!”
Kelly swiveled in his seat, his blue eyes boring into her through the dark. “What did you suspect people would do after you bared your titties for the town? Praise you? Christ, Sheilagh, use your fucking head!”
“Like you have any room to talk, Kelly! There isn’t a woman in Center County who hasn’t seen your wank!”
“And do you think I didn’t pay a price for my actions, Sheilagh?” Kelly stormed.
No, she didn’t. Kelly lived the high life and still managed to find his soul mate. No one in this car had a right to even pretend they understood what it felt like to be invisible.
“It’s like the sheep fucker!” Kelly snarled and turned toward the windshield.
“Shamus the sheep fucker!” her brother snapped. “The old Irishman in the bar that built the church and sailed the sea, but no one remembers that because he fucked one sheep.”
“No one’s fucking a sheep, you moron!”
“Well, what do you think people would say if you started stripping? You wouldn’t be Sheilagh the beautiful McCullough or Sheilagh the genius. No, you’d only be Sheilagh the stripper. Do you want that kind of reputation?”
She crossed her arms over her breasts and glared out the window.
Tristan turned. “Why would you do this, Shei?”
She blinked repeatedly. Because no one notices me anymore. Forcing an expression of indifference, she shrugged. “Why not?”
“You’re better than that. You know you are,” he said in a soft voice.
She didn’t know what to say back. Maybe she wasn’t better than that. Maybe that’s all she was meant to be, a stripper in some Podunk town.
Luke wouldn’t look at her, but she still heard him growl. “This is bullshit. When are you going to grow up?”
She pivoted and turned her glare on him. “Me? How about you, Luke? When are you going to grow up? You have an awful lot to say about how everyone lives their life, when you don’t have the balls to let the world see who you really are!”
The car grew deathly silent. Kelly said her name in warning and she snapped. “No! I’m sick of it! Just say it! Say it!”
“What do you want me to say?” Luke roared.
Tristan’s stare cut to her and she felt a pinch of regret much like the lament she saw in his eyes. Why couldn’t they just come out and let everyone know they were in love?
“This isn’t about Luke,” Tristan said quietly. “It never was. I’m sorry, Sheilagh. I know this isn’t what you asked for, but sometimes life is unfair.”
She fumed as she glared back at him. “I wanna go home.”
No one said anything for quite some time. “You’re going away,” Kelly finally announced.
“You’re going to college. There’s nothing for you here and you know it. It’s time for you to get on with your life and make something of yourself.”
Bestselling author Lydia Michaels writes all forms of hot romance. She presses the bounds of love and surprises readers just when they assume they have her stories figured out. From Amish vampyres, to wild Irishmen, to broken heroes, and heroines no man can match, Lydia takes readers on an emotional journey of the heart, mind, and soul with every story she pens. Her books are intellectual, erotic, haunting, always centered on love.
Lydia Michaels loves to hear from readers! She can be contacted by email at Lydia@LydiaMichaels.org
Other Titles by Lydia Michaels:
As Tears Go By
All 4 You
To Catch a Wolfe
Called to Order
Calling for a Miracle
Call Her Mine