Escape to Indigo Bay Boxed Set
Featured Authors Melissa McClone, Jeanette Lewis, Stacy Claflin, and Jean Oram
Genre Adult Sweet/Clean Romance Contemporary Romance
Publication Date May 1, 2019
About the Book
Love is always in the air when you visit Indigo Bay.
Get swept away by the magic of this beachside small town. Grab a sweet tea from Caroline’s Cafe and take a stroll to the Chocolate Emporium for a quick treat. Then warm your toes in the sand and indulge in a happily ever after—or four!
From NYT bestselling author Jean Oram: Sweet Matchmaker
When Ginger says yes to a marriage of convenience to help keep Logan, the father of a special-needs child, in the country she figures it’ll also get her matchmaking grandmother off her back. But as inconvenient feelings develop for her new, handsome husband, she discovers he’s also an undercover secret agent. When his mission ends, what will it mean for their marriage… and her heart?
From author Jeanette Lewis: Sweet Illusions
After escaping a cult, Eva Malone longs for the anonymity and peace of a small town. When she meets a local police officer, sparks fly. Eva keeps her past a secret, but Ben wants to know more about the mysterious woman capturing his heart. Will the secrets he uncovers lead to a happy ending or…heartbreak?
From USA Today bestselling author Stacy Claflin: Sweet Reunion
Maggie’s determined to stay single, but her meddling aunt wants her married. When, despite her intentions, Maggie falls for the notorious bad boy Canyon, Aunt Lucille doesn’t think he’s good enough for her, so she vows to keep them apart. Will Maggie continue to open her heart to love despite the many obstacles, or will the single life prove to be her best option?
From USA Today bestselling author Melissa McClone: Sweet Holiday Wishes
Saving his marriage is at the top of Mitch’s Christmas list. Will a romantic holiday vacation be his and Lizzy’s second chance at a happily ever after or will it lead to a final goodbye?
Carve out some me-time and savor these four feel-good beach reads. The town of Indigo Bay is the perfect place to indulge in your next reading escape. Don’t miss out on this limited edition collection.
Excerpt: Sweet Holiday Wishes by Melissa McClone
“You cannot kidnap Lizzy, dude. That would be a huge mistake. Not to mention illegal.”
“What are you talking about, Dare?” U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Mitchell, aka Mitch, Hamilton sat in his car across the street from an apartment building. He appreciated his team leader Sergeant Darragh O’Rourke’s early morning phone call, but the guy had it all wrong.
“I’m surprising my wife with a trip to Indigo Bay for Christmas,” Mitch explained. “That’s not kidnapping.”
“It is if she doesn’t want to go.”
“She’ll want to go.” The words, however, rang hollow.
Once upon a time, Mitch would have been certain Lizzy would say yes to a surprise getaway on the South Carolina coast. Now, not so much. He hated how the truth gnawed at him.
Rangers lead the way!
Mitch hoped he got the chance.
“What’s your plan B if she says no?” Dare asked.
Plan B? Mitch had spent weeks figuring out how to get his wife back after she left him in October. She’d said she needed someone to take care of her for once. He thought he was doing that already.
He dragged a hand over his tired face. “Uh…”
“This is too important. You need a backup plan.” The words flew from Dare’s mouth like artillery fire. “I had one when I wanted Jenny to give me another chance. Didn’t need it, but it was worth renting that Bigfoot costume just in case.”
Dare and Jenny Hanford, a bestselling thriller author, had become an official couple in September while Dare was recovering from serious injuries after a helicopter crash. The two hadn’t been together long, but they seemed perfect for each other.
Mitch had thought the same thing about him and Lizzy when he married her three years ago.
“I don’t need a backup plan.” He glanced at Lizzy’s empty parking space. Her overnight shift as a registered nurse had ended nearly an hour ago. Where was she? “Lizzy has wanted to go to Indigo Bay since we met. She won’t say no.”
“If you say so.” Dare’s uncertain tone matched the way Mitch felt.
“I do. My bag is in the truck. The gas tank’s full.” Mitch wanted to sound confident. His guys counted on him to lead. He needed to appear strong and capable.
And he was those things when it came to him being a Ranger.
He’d faced terrorists and insurgents while deployed with his platoon from Fort Benning. He’d been ambushed, caught in firefights, and battled for his life. But waiting for his wife was taking his nerves to an all-time high.
He missed Lizzy.
He wanted her back in their house and in their bed.
“You’ve got this.” Dare’s serious tone suggested the younger sergeant understood what was at stake. “Remember, this vacation is about Lizzy. Show her how much she means to you. Make sure she doesn’t feel taken for granted.”
Lizzy had told Mitch she’d felt like nothing more than the person who took care of the house and his sexual needs. He didn’t understand because he thought their marriage was perfect. “I’ll do whatever it takes.”
Failure wasn’t an option.
He’d escaped from impossible situations before. Reconciling with Lizzy should be easier than getting himself and his guys home in one piece. She was his family. The most important person in his life. Maybe he shouldn’t have walked out of that stupid marriage counselor’s office in June, but what else could he do when Lizzy was blaming him for nonexistent problems? He hadn’t done anything wrong.
“Have fun wooing your wife. She won’t know what hit her.” Sincerity filled Dare’s voice. “Call if you need me. I’ve got your six.”
“Right back at you. Enjoy the holidays.”
“The gifts are packed, and the engagement ring is in my pocket.” Dare sounded like he was smiling. Given he was spending the holidays in Berry Lake, Washington with Jenny and a recently adopted kitten, he was probably grinning from ear to ear. “Have a Merry Christmas.”
Mitch tucked his phone into his back pocket. The silence in the truck’s cab pressed down on him.
A marriage takes two people to succeed. I can’t keep holding everything together any longer. I want a divorce.
Remembering Lizzy’s words made his shoulders sag as if he were wearing body armor and a seventy-pound pack.
Divorce wasn’t the solution. Mitch loved Lizzy. He needed her. No one had ever loved him like she did. As soon as they arrived in Indigo Bay, he would show her their marriage was fine and they belonged together.
Excerpt: Sweet Illusions by Jeanette Lewis
Eva nodded as she brushed gnats away from her face impatiently, wishing this was over. She didn’t want to remember details—the hunger, the pressing humidity, the barracks with the moldy blankets and ever-present odor of dirty diapers. The endless ceremonies with the fires and the singing, everyone swaying in unison, the trancelike look that never left her mother’s eyes. And Jessie. Even when they were young, his eyes were the opposite of trancelike—cold, calculating, greedy.
“Okay, so you come from kind of a strange place.” Ben grinned and nudged her with his shoulder. “That explains a lot.”
She turned to him. “Like what?”
“You work in a chocolate shop, but don’t eat it. You don’t like crowds and you’re scared of policemen. You read like a crazy woman, you don’t know how to swim …” He ticked off the items on his fingers, but his brown eyes were twinkling.
“I am not afraid of policemen!” She nudged him back, careful not to break the hold of their hands. “Just you.”
“What?” He gave her the puppy dog eyes. “I am a total and complete pushover.”
Ben stopped in the shade of an oak tree and pulled her toward him. She went willingly, stepping into his embrace. His arms around her waist were solid, warm, a buffer between her and the world. Eva let out a long sigh and leaned in to rest her head against his chest. For a long time, they stood without speaking, and the only sounds were the occasional chirping of a sandpiper and the muffled thrum of the ocean coming from behind the houses lining the avenue.
She hadn’t told him everything, hadn’t even told him most things, but that felt okay for now. What she had told him made her heart feel lighter than it had in … forever.
The cotton fabric of his shirt was soft under her cheek and still carried the smell of salt water and sunscreen. “I think you’re amazing,” he said softly into her hair. “I think you’re smart and brave and strong.” His hands slid to her hips, gently pulling her even closer, and the thrill of excitement she’d been aching to feel exploded through her, replacing the anxiety and embarrassment she’d carried all afternoon.
The first touch of his lips was soft, like a whisper of a breeze, but it was enough to send waves of longing trembling through her, making her knees shake.
Ben drew back ever so slightly, his lips hovering over hers, letting her decide if she wanted him to be closer.
She did. Almost on their own, her hands moved up his back, and he groaned as her fingers followed the outline of his muscles under his thin shirt. His kisses became more demanding and she gasped, burning for his touch as she parted her lips to give him what he was seeking, trusting him fully.
Excerpt: Sweet Matchmaker by Jean Oram
Logan Stone pulled the ill-gotten invitation from the breast pocket of his sports jacket. One small fib and he would be through the doors and into the party for engaged couples. Then he could be on the lookout for Vito Hart, diamond smuggler. Vito had been working the week’s events here in Indigo Bay, hobnobbing with people like Logan, a wholesaler of loose diamonds. Little did Vito know that Logan had plans to put him behind bars before he could ruin any more happily ever afters with bad deals and violence.
Logan had been deep undercover and without agency resources for six long months while tracking Vito, edging closer and closer. And now, as a (fake) wholesaler for a (fake) international business, he was almost in. Almost had enough incriminating intel to put the man securely behind bars and stop one nice chunk of the illegal trade of conflict diamonds that supported violent rebel forces stirring up civil war and intertribal conflict in Africa.
But three days. That was all Logan had left on his visa before it was game over for his cover and he was deported by the local officers of the law. They’d been tracking him ever since they’d found him with a soon-to-expire visa lurking around Becker’s visa and passport forgeries near the docks during one of their sting operations. Not his best day in the field and so much for plan B.
Logan inhaled the mild South Carolina ocean breeze, letting it wash over him as he reminded himself who he was supposed to be—just a wholesaler wanting to get close to a diamond source, as well as potential new clients. He had his name tag, a small brochure, fake business cards and even a simple diamond engagement ring with a spiral Celtic knot design. All part of the shtick. All intended to get him closer to Vito. Bust him before the local officers ejected Logan from the country on Wednesday.
The doors to the event were open, the music pouring outside. In line, engaged couples kissed and held hands, and Logan looked away, not wanting to be reminded of all he’d lost by being selfish so many years ago. He had a job to do today. Nothing more.
He toyed with the invitation while the line slowly moved forward. Get close to Vito, gain his trust. That’s what he had to do tonight. The man knew what line of work he was in, though he acted as if he barely knew him. Logan felt Vito needed just one more small thing before he took him into his trusted inner circle.
But what was that missing piece?
Laughter from inside caused Logan to glance up. Vito was near the doors, his wife at his side. Logan had mentioned in passing that he was engaged, but he’d yet to show up with a woman on his arm. Was that the issue? If so, he was going to have to find a civilian, seeing as it was too risky to break his silence with HQ and ask for a female field agent to come play the part. There was a good reason he had gone silent—Vito was no dummy and likely had more than the one guy Logan had noticed sporadically keeping tabs on him.
Which meant it was time to finally show up with a fiancée.
Logan needed to regroup before he saw the smuggler again. Turning on his heel, he left the line, nearly bumping into a woman in a clingy green dress that brought out the spark in her matching eyes, the fiery highlights in her auburn hair.
“Oh! I’m sorry,” she said.
“My fault. Are you all right?”
Her smile grew as she nodded. “Australian?”
“That I am, mate.” He laid his accent on thick and her grin took on a hint of slyness. The sheila liked accents. And he liked her. She had the kind of curves and smile that had him taking a second look back as he made his way down to the beach.
Hot, that’s what that woman was. If he hadn’t been on a mission he’d be trying to spend a little time with her. And since he was on mission, he should be doing the same, to use her to further his cover. But civilian covers were tricky. Risky.
Logan walked down to the Atlantic, letting the sound of the crashing waves fill his mind.
He was tired. Unenthusiastic about maintaining his cover, managing a million lies. He stared out at a blinking buoy marking a shoal, and rolled his shoulders. Maybe it was time for a new job. One with more toys, more excitement.
Yeah, he had toys and occasionally even got to use them. And as for excitement? His work was either deadly boring or so exciting he nearly died. Literally.
He needed something in between, like his agent friend Zach Forrester had been talking about—private security.
That would be nice. Lots of toys and the kind of excitement that didn’t get him killed.
Just about perfect.
He also wouldn’t have to worry about his next mission taking him away from Annabelle Babkins, daughter of a fellow agent who’d been killed in the line of duty. Eighteen years old now, Annabelle had a room in an assisted living facility, but her only guardian and advocate was Logan.
Frustration still stirring within him, he began walking back to the party.
Wednesday—that’s when it would all fall apart. Three short days.
He’d worked with tighter timelines and knew that when plans continued to fail like they had with this mission, something better was typically lining up for him.
And if not, well, then he’d tag out and someone else would come in and try to get close. But in the meantime, Logan would go old-school and find a nice sheila to lure into a marriage of convenience to help get his visa extended so he didn’t get deported. Plan C, because seriously? Nobody at HQ seemed to have noticed that, due to the way Vito kept going dark and the case kept getting extended, Logan’s visa was now set to expire.
That meant it was time for him to focus on looking out for number one—himself—and find a lovely woman to marry him.
#Excerpt: Sweet Reunion by Stacy Claflin
Magnolia Kendrick jumped from the booth and darted between the tables, avoiding waiters and waitresses. She didn’t slow until she reached the bathroom. Closing the stall door behind her, she leaned against the wall and took in a deep breath of heavily-sweetened air.
That had been close. Too close.
Once her heart rate returned to normal, she exited the stall. An older lady shot her a glare. Probably because she hadn’t heard a flush.
Maggie flashed her a quick smile and went to the mirror to fix her makeup, though it didn’t need it. She only needed another minute or two to pull herself together before rejoining Aunt Lucille—the reason she’d fled to the bathroom.
Auntie had a good heart, bless her, but the woman couldn’t take a clue. Or a flat-out request.
Maggie would just have to try again. What other option was there? She lived with her great-aunt, who had tried to set her up with practically every eligible bachelor in Indigo Bay.
Now at Figaro’s, the restaurant owned by a distant cousin about half an hour from their town, Auntie was attempting another set-up.
Lord have mercy. It was almost enough for Maggie to head back home to Georgia—to the one place she could never show her face again.
Maggie wanted nothing to do with a relationship of any kind. That was part of the reason she’d moved to Indigo Bay. A fresh start in a town where people didn’t know her problems.
She stood tall and practiced her smile. It was her best feature, unless she listened to the people who adored her too-thick and too-curly dark hair. Long as it was, it was a nightmare. But she hated the way she looked when it was shorter.
The bathroom door flung open. “Maggie!”
Maggie turned to find her cousin Savannah. It wasn’t unusual to find a relative at Figaro’s. “Hi, Savannah.”
“Auntie said you might be in here.”
Maggie put her makeup back in her purse. “Did she send you to find me?”
“She said you ran off like a chicken with its head cut off.” Savannah raised an eyebrow, clearly wanting to know more.
“Can’t a girl use the bathroom?” Maggie adjusted her skirt.
“Is everything okay, darlin’?”
It would be if Aunt Lucille would quit trying to set her up with every available bachelor within a twenty-mile radius of Indigo Bay.
Savannah stepped closer and put a hand on Maggie’s arm. “Everyone worries about you, you know.”
Maggie smiled as sugary sweet as she could. “I appreciate the concern, but I’m fine. Hey, Auntie wasn’t talking to anyone, was she?”
Savannah fanned herself. “You mean that new server, Emilio?”
Wonderful. Aunt Lucille was probably planning Maggie’s date with Emilio at that moment.
“You don’t like him?” Savannah frowned.
Maggie sighed. “I don’t even know him.”
“I wouldn’t mind getting to know him. Did you see those eyes? Blue as a clear lake.”
“Must’ve missed those. Take care, okay? Say hello to Auntie Charlotte for me.”
“I will.” Savannah gave a little wave. “Tell me if you go out with Emilio. I want to hear all about it.”
Maggie forced a smile. There would be no date. She’d managed to avoid all of Aunt Lucille’s attempts. She could do it again. Maybe the tickle in her throat would turn into something more if she was lucky.
As her cousin headed for a stall, Maggie made her way out into the hallway. She’d far prefer to stay in the bathroom until lunch was over, but Auntie would just send more ladies after her until Maggie returned.
Maggie was so busy thinking about what she would say that she bumped into someone.
She looked up. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t—”
Her gaze locked with a familiar but nearly-forgotten set of dark brown eyes that appeared as surprised to see her as she was to see them. Maggie’s heart skipped a beat, then her pulse drummed through her body. Her cheeks warmed, heat spreading across her face.
He still had the same effect on her he’d had so many years earlier, despite the fact that she’d nearly forgotten about him. Not because she’d wanted to, but because life had taken them their separate ways and they’d lost touch.
He was just as gorgeous as ever, if not more so. Tan, neatly dressed. His dark hair was longer than it had been so many years before—and it suited him.
A waitress rushed by, bumping Maggie and nearly throwing her against her old friend. He still wore the same aftershave.
A wave of first-love emotions shoved their way to the surface. Feelings that had overwhelmed her younger self but she’d never allowed herself to act upon. Instead, she’d pined for him.
Then he’d exited from her life.
Now things had changed so much. Too much.
No doubt about it—he was definitely more attractive now. He’d grown out of his boyish good looks and had matured into a ruggedly handsome man. His deep brown eyes sent a shiver to her very core.
Maggie took a step back so she couldn’t smell him. So she could think straight.
She didn’t have the time to get distracted by a handsome face—especially not the one in front of her.
They’d been staring at each other for too long. Someone needed to say something.
Maggie cleared her throat. “Canyon?”
He stared at her, his expression practically unreadable. “Maggie.”
She struggled to find words, so she cleared her throat again just to give herself another moment to think of something to say. “I didn’t realize you were back in town. Just a pit stop?”
He shook his head. “Nope. I’m back for good. Here for a job interview, in fact.”
“You are? I’ll put in a good word. My cousin owns the restaurant.”
“Really?” Canyon arched a brow.
Something about that simple act took her breath away.
She needed to get away, and quick. Preferably before Auntie saw him and tried to set up a date.
Maggie forced a smile. “I’d love to catch up sometime. I’m staying at Aunt Lucille’s. Pop in and say hi when you get a chance. We can have some tea or walk the beach like we used to.”
Why had she just said that? The last thing she needed was him surprising her for a visit, especially at home. Auntie would want to set them up.
He ran his fingers through his hair. “Okay. It’d be real nice to catch up. I’d better get going. Interview in a few minutes.”
Maggie nodded. “Right. Good luck.”
Canyon headed down the hallway toward the offices.
She watched until he was out of sight then headed back to the booth where Aunt Lucille was nearly done with her meal. At least she was alone. Maggie had grown tired of thinking up excuses to avoid dates with the men her aunt constantly tried to set her up with.
“What took you so long, Maggie?” Aunt Lucille tugged on her perfectly-styled blonde hair and waited for a reply.
Maggie slid back to her spot. “I kept running into people. You didn’t have to send Savannah after me.”
Aunt Lucille dabbed her mouth with a napkin. “You’d been in there so long.”
She hadn’t, but rather than argue, Maggie took a big bite of her salmon.
“Emilio is free this Saturday afternoon.”
Maggie nearly choked on her fish. “Auntie, I appreciate your concern but—”
“But nothing. You aren’t getting any younger and you need to get your mind off the past. Isn’t that why you came to stay with me?”
“I’m twenty-four. There’s plenty of time to figure out what to do with my life.”
Aunt Lucille tilted her head and sighed. “Young people these days. You can marry rich and not have to worry about a career. In my day, ladies went to college to get their MRS degree.”
Maggie shoved a piece of broccoli into her mouth before she said something that would start an argument.
Auntie got a dreamy look on her face, then started talking about her late husband and their courting days. It may as well have been a hundred years ago, as far removed as it was from Maggie’s situation.
She fought back tears that threatened. Why couldn’t her aunt realize how painful all this was? Dating wasn’t going to solve Maggie’s problems. Getting engaged again certainly wouldn’t.
Maggie was done with men, period. She couldn’t take any more heartbreak. Once she figured out what she wanted to do with her life, she could focus on that. But that was the problem.
Nothing made her happy. She couldn’t escape the pain of her past no matter how hard she tried.
Tour Wide Giveaway
To celebrate the release of ESCAPE TO INDIGO BAY, the authors are giving away an Indigo Bay bundle package!
The prize is a beach-themed prize pack which includes:
A Thirty-One Gifts “Escape to Indigo Bay” small canvas toe
A Paperback Copy of Sweet Dreams by Stacy Claflin
A Paperback Copy of Sweet Reunion by Stacy Claflin
A Paperback Copy of The Passionate One by Jeannette Lewis
A Paperback Copy of An Unexpected Angel by Jeannette Lewis
A Paperback Copy of Jenny by Melissa McClone
A Paperback Copy of Sweet Forgiveness by Jean Oram
A Bag of Salt Water Taffy
A Mini jar full of seashells
GIVEAWAY TERMS & CONDITIONS: Open to internationally. One winner will receive a prize bundle containing a Thirty-One Gifts “Escape to Indigo Bay” small canvas tote, a paperback copy of Sweet Dreams by Stacy Claflin, a paperback copy of Sweet Reunion by Stacy Claflin, a paperback copy of The Passionate One by Jeannette Lewis, a paperback copy of An Unexpected Angel by Jeannette Lewis, a paperback copy of Jenny by Melissa McClone, a paperback copy of Sweet Forgiveness by Jean Oram, a bag of salt water taffy, and a mini jar full of seashells. This giveaway is administered by Pure Textuality PR on behalf of the authors of the Escape to Indigo Bay boxed set. Giveaway ends 5/19/2019 @ 11:59pm EST. CLICK HERE TO ENTER!
About the Authors
USA Today bestselling author, Melissa McClone has published over forty novels with Harlequin and Tule Publishing Group. With a degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, Melissa worked for a major airline where she traveled the globe and met her husband. But analyzing jet engine performance couldn’t compete with her love of writing happily ever afters. Her first full-time writing endeavor was her first sale when she was pregnant with her first child! When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her driving her minivan to/from her children’s swim practices and other activities. Melissa lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children, two spoiled Norwegian Elkhounds, and cats who think they rule the house. They do!
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Romance with HEART!
Jeanette Lewis is a bestselling sweet romance author who specializes in writing character-driven stories with heart. Jeanette’s writing is known for her strong characters, depth, and detail, as well as plenty of sweet, swoony kissing scenes.
Dreaming up stories has always been one of Jeanette’s favorite things. Other favorites include family, friends, crisp Autumn days, having adventures, and frozen gummy bears.
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Jean Oram is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author who writes feel-good small town romances. She grew up in a town of 100 (cats and dogs not included) and owns one pair of high heels which she has worn approximately three times in the past twenty years.
Jean lives in Canada with her husband, two kids, cat, dog, and the pesky deer that wander into her yard to eat her rose bushes and apple trees. She can often be found outdoors hiking up a mountain, camping or reading a book.
Thank you for reading!
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USA Today bestselling author Stacy Claflin entertains readers in a variety of genres, from paranormal to suspense to sweet contemporary romance. She has been telling stories for as long as she can remember, and as a child would often get into trouble trying to convince friends her wild tales were true. Now she puts her creativity to better use by writing page-turning books that leave readers begging for more. Find her at: http://stacyclaflin.com/
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This promotion is brought to you by Pure Textuality PR.