(Busy Bean #6)
by Teralyn Mitchell
Cover Design: Elle Maxwell Designs
Publication date: September 13, 2021
Publisher: Heart Eyes Press
Basketball has always been his one love, until now . . .
Zeke Armstrong never imagined he’d be back in Vermont, but here he is, living in Colebury and trying to rehab an injury that could mean an early retirement from pro basketball. Running into his former classmate, Mallory Barrett, shouldn’t be a distraction. It shouldn’t mean anything, so why is he accidentally on purpose showing up at the coffee shop where the beautiful writer spends her time?
Mallory Barrett has met a guy. Well, she hasn’t met him yet, except for on the dating app she almost refused to download. “Coby” sparks her interest and gets her jokes–and gives the romance-novel heroes she loves so much a full-court run for their money. When their first date doesn’t work out, she decides to give him another shot . . . just as a man she despises reenters her life. While her interest in the mystery man on the app grows, she clashes constantly with Zeke in real life. She can’t forgive him for humiliating her in high school, yet she can’t deny she’s drawn to him now.
She’s somehow gone from confirmed bachelorette to the tie-breaker between two men. Meanwhile Zeke has a secret–one that will cost him the game if Mallory finds out . . .
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She didn’t wait for me to say anything else, spinning on her heels and heading for the nearest store or restaurant where she could sit down. I chuckled and turned to head in the other direction. A hard wall of muscle made me stumble. Two strong hands gripped my upper arms. I looked up to see who had saved me from falling and who I needed to thank. The need to be polite shriveled and died when I saw that it was Zeke holding onto my arms.
“Are you okay?”
The combination of his deep voice and his hands on me caused me to shiver. I shook him off. What the hell? Why was I always reacting to him? I didn’t like him or his stupid good looks. I crossed my arms over my stomach.
“Why are you always where I am?” I snapped.
“We’re in Burlington.”
“Still small, Ror. You also don’t have a monopoly on all things Vermont.”
I rolled my eyes. He had me there. “So, you’re telling me you normally wander the Marketplace on a cold Sunday?”
“When I have something to do, I wander around,” he said. “And maybe Stacey texted me and told me the two of you would be here.”
I clenched my teeth. Of course, she told him we’d be here. She went out of her way to make my life hell. So even though today had been about me getting her back, somehow, she’d figured out how to stick it to me too. I mean, not really. It’d probably been innocent, but I was going to blame her anyway.
It was frustrating to continuously run into Zeke. He had a point about it being a small town. This was what I dreaded when I realized he was back in Vermont and living in the town I now called home.
“You and Stacey talk often?”
The smirk on his full lips made me narrow my eyes at him. I hugged myself tighter as my stomach clenched. A tingle down below, that I was not acknowledging, had me pursing my lips. Why did he have to be so goddamn handsome? I was sure women fell all over themselves when he smiled at them like he was smiling at me right now. Especially when that dimple in his left cheek popped, but I wasn’t going to. Delight danced in his hooded light brown eyes. His sharp jawline was sprinkled with hair that looked good on him; it wasn’t a full beard but cut close to his skin. Not that I was looking, or rather, staring.
I groaned. “Not even a little, but I do want to have the facts right when I confront her about divulging my location to the enemy.”
He let out a deep laugh. “You’ve always been a bit of a drama queen,” he teased. “Stace and I exchanged numbers the last time we happened to be at the Busy Bean. We’ve only talked a few times.”
“Whatever.” I was done with this conversation and being around him.
I started walking, only for him to fall into step beside me. I let him walk beside me for a few minutes before I couldn’t resist saying something.
“Can I help you?”
“I don’t think so, unless you work at Burlington Records.”
“That’s where you’re going?” I asked.
Meet The Author
From a young age, Teralyn Mitchell has been an avid reader, devouring book after book in her quest to find characters she could relate to. While the books she read took her on many exciting and unexpected adventures, she could never find characters that truly inspired her or worlds in which she could see herself existing. This calling has started the career of many prolific writers, and Teralyn is no different. On a mission to create dynamic feminine characters that her dreamy-eyed young self could relate to, Teralyn writes magical stories set in the real—sometimes made up—world. She builds worlds where princesses and princes find love while dealing with the same problems and insecurities as everyone in modern society. Teralyn loves to spend her time creating unique, multi-faceted characters and building the complex relationships that develop between them as they navigate their circumstances. Developed from a foundation of hard work and driven creativity, Teralyn’s writing is fueled by her characters and by her desire to create fantastical yet relatable characters for herself and her readers. With a heavy emphasis on building narrative through dialogue, Teralyn strives not only to tell powerful stories, but also to create new worlds in which her readers can get lost, and perhaps even find some small part of themselves.
Pulling influence from writers such as Walter Dean Myers, Sharon M. Draper, Jodi Picoult, Mildred D. Taylor, Maria V. Snyder, and Emily R. King, whose varied works all contributed to her unique perspective as an author. Originally from Monroe, Louisiana, Teralyn moved frequently as a child between Monroe, Atlanta, and Las Vegas, before finally settling in Provo, UT, where she lived for fourteen years before moving back south. After completing a Bachelor of Arts in English, concentrating on Creative Writing, at Utah Valley University, Teralyn knew she had no choice but to pursue her dream of being a published writer. Throughout the upheavals in her life, books have been a quiet source of comfort and strength, grounding her as she pushes towards achieving her dream of writing full time. With a bestselling novel under belt and another on the way, Teralyn now spends all of her free time writing and reading anything that inspires her.
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