Tourists flock to Jefferson Point for the antique shops and riverboat tours. Everyone knows everyone and secrets are impossible to keep. Or so it seems...
Dr. Ryan Harper's brutal slaying stuns the picturesque river town. High school football star, Prom King, and on his way to finishing his residency, Ryan was their golden child.
After a two-year struggle to care for their young son alone, his widow, Nicole, reluctantly returns to Jefferson Point. Her homecoming reopens old wounds, as Ryan's family and friends struggle to adapt to life without his dynamic presence.
The last person Nicole expects to reconnect with is Aaron Foster, Ryan’s best man and reluctant keeper of his secrets.
With opinions circulating on Nicole’s post-Ryan existence, she must maneuver the rapids of past loves, new expectations, and haunting dreams of her fallen husband.
The Perpetual Quest for the Perfect Life is a frank story of questionable decisions, small town politics, and love after loss.
Excerpt 4: She said NO!
"There you are." He gave her a lopsided grin and advanced toward her. Her head was still spinning from the scene she’d just witnessed and the hours of drinking on a mostly empty stomach.
"Jason…" Tired of his crap, Nicole backed away. She stopped as she ran into something. Looking over her shoulder, she realized she’d backed up to a tree trunk. Further retreat wasn’t an option.
"Alone at last," Jason slurred. The day of steady liquor consumption was finally catching up to him. She suspected he’d had a couple more shots since she’d left the barn.
"Look. Avery’s not here to watch you hit on me. What do you say we go have some barbeque?" She reached for his arm and he pulled it away, placing it on the tree trunk for support.
"And miss my chance to finally get you alone? No way." Suddenly on high alert, Nic hadn’t expected Jason to actually attempt to seduce her. She’d assumed he’d been caught up in the game, trying to piss Avery off. He pressed his body against hers and she winced at the rough, prickly surface of the tree trunk through her clothes. His face was an inch from hers and she smelled the stench of whiskey on his breath. She considered his aggressiveness from their school days, and something Avery had once told her after she ended their engagement: Jason could be a dangerous drunk.
She opened her mouth to talk him down, and as she stumbled for what to say, he brought his lips down hard on hers. She felt teeth scrape her lip and she could taste her own blood. Panic gripped her and she struggled to push him away, but Jason had always been remarkably strong. He had one hand in her hair and the other fondled her breast. She tried to push him off several times, but it just seemed to get him more aroused. Finally, in desperation, she bit his tongue. He winced and yanked his face away from hers.
"Stop it, Jason! Get off of me."
"Now you’re gonna play hard to get? Come on, Nic. I remember how much you like this." The mouth was on her neck and his hand gripped her hair tighter, as his other hand moved past the button of her jeans.
"No, Jason! I said no." Nicole’s voice was harsh as she batted at his hand. In response, he pulled her hair roughly, bringing tears of pain to her eyes. She cried out and his gaze went from her zipper back to her eyes. His grip on her softened and his eyes looked almost tender.
"Hey … it’s okay to be nervous." He stroked her cheek. "It’s probably been a long time for you … I’ll try to be more gentle."
At that instant, she saw movement in her peripheral vision, as something large sent Jason sprawling to the ground, taking several pieces of her hair with him. Nicole blinked in pain and shock to see Aaron looming over him, his hackles up, ready to fly into a rage.
"She said no." Aaron’s voice was quiet, with a scary quality. Nicole knew that voice and that stance. Aaron was in full battle mode, and if she didn’t intercede, he would pummel Jason to a bloody pulp.
"Come on, Aaron. Let’s go back inside." Nicole’s voice was forcibly calm, as if talking to a wild animal. Jason was on his feet and glaring at Aaron; they were squaring off.
Perpetual Quest takes you on a ride that at times leaves you breathless and captivated. I did not know what to think of this book as I had begun to read it. We meet Avery a headstrong independent beautiful woman who takes no bull.
Nicole, is Avery's sister in law, who was left widowed with a baby boy. Ryan who was murdered was Avery brother. Nicole and Avery are very close. She and Nicole have been friends for a very long time. Nicole moves back to Jefferson Point to be closer to be near family and friends.
Then we have Aaron, He was Ryan's best friend. He has always had a crush on Nicole but being that Nicole was with Ryan he never persuade anything.
We are also introduced to Shilah, a man who made me squirm by his description alone. He is a strong man who knows what he wants. He is kind and just awwww.
From the beginning, I was sucked into this story. There is plenty of things that go on in this book and I felt as though I was right in the middle of it all as it unfolded. Secrets are revealed, new romances are formed. Old crushes come together.
I think it was a great story of a mother who will do anything to make her way in a world that has robbed her of her husband, she is determined to make her way.
There were times that I was left in shock as things were revealed.
I really enjoyed that the authors gave us a back story to the characters. It felt as if I was getting to know them and bonded with them. Another unique thing that this story has is the use of so many characters. At first I was a bit leery thinking how can I keep track of everything that is going on, but quickly found that the way this story is written my anxiety over that was for nothing.
Overall it is a great story. The secondary characters were great and pulled in everything nicely. I laughed, I cried, I swooned and was shocked. I love when a book can pull forth so many of my emotions.
I gave this book
Tammy Coons is the youngest of 7 children and lives in Illinois with her husband, Casey and three children Skyler, Sawyer and Savana. Tammy graduated from Scott Community College in 2010 and holds a diploma in Health Information Technology. In order to pass time while seeking employment in 2010 she decided to update Fury, one of the many stories she and Michelle have written together in the past 20 years.
Michelle Pace is a RN living in Texas with her husband, Les. She has two daughters, Holly and Bridgette, and one son, Kai. A singer and actress in her youth, Michelle has always enjoyed entertaining people and is excited to continue to do so as a writer.
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