NOTE: This book is suitable for adults only
by Carrie Elks
Carrie Elks' debut novella, Halfway Hidden, has just been released. Check out the Books Direct Christmas Giveaway for your chance to win an ebook copy of your own.
When fear mixes with desire, who can you trust?
Rachel Stone is stuck, contemplating that very question. Spending her time as a bartender in an isolated West Virginia town, she hides behind dark hair and an assumed name. She exists from day to day, trying not to let her past overwhelm her.
When a tall stranger walks into the bar at closing time, her attempts at hiding turn to dust. Muscled and intense, he is attractive enough for Rachel to ignore her instincts and listen to her baser desires. As a storm brews in the skies of West Virginia, confusion builds in Rachel’s mind. What begins as flirtation explodes into a darker, more primal passion, leading her to question everything she thought she knew.
While snow blankets the outside world, they are forced to remain inside, confronting their demons and the sizzling attraction between them. Submitting to their urges is easy; learning who to trust is anything but.
This 30,000 word novella contains references to past abuse and rough, consensual sex.
“Can I get a drink?” The voice startled her, and Rachel froze for a moment, glancing up at the mirror lining the wall behind the bar. The stranger stared back at her, his face reflected in the glass. Their eyes met and she dropped her cloth, the fabric square falling to the wooden floor. She took a deep breath, trying to still her racing heart before turning around with a smile painted on her lips.
“Sure, what can I get you?”
It was as if he’d appeared out of nowhere. A ghost walking through walls.
“What beers you got?” Like hers, the stranger’s voice seemed out of place. It was an accent that unnerved her to the bone. She hadn’t heard it for more than a year, save coming out of her own mouth. All she had to do was closer her eyes, and it was like she was back in Boston.
“You want draft or bottle?” Her lips were dry as hell, and she snaked her tongue out to moisten them. The stranger kept his gaze glued to her face as he considered the options, fingers tapping gently on the bar. He looked to be in his mid-thirties, his thick hair showing no signs of grey. His face remained unlined, though peppered with light stubble, the dark-blond scruff shadowing his jaw. He was good looking too, in that rugged, tough way that some guys were. Even sitting on the bar stool, she could tell he was a big man: tall and built. The thick muscles of his chest fought with the fabric of his t-shirt to make themselves known, and the muscles were winning. It felt like the temperature had risen by forty degrees. She pulled at the neckline of her sweater to fan her skin.
Rachel works as waitress in local bar, hiding from her past, trying not to attract any attention to herself. When mysterious Murphy comes into the town, Rachel is not sure what to think of him. Did he really come because of businnes or is it something else? Will he be able to see through her pretences?
I was extremely excited for this novella and I was most certainly not disappointed. I was pleasantly surprised that even though Halfway Hidden is short novella, author didn't resolve to using insta-love or insta-connection. Plot moved on gradually, giving it natural and believable flow.
Also, I have to admit that I really liked Rachel and Murphy. She was down-to-earth mature woman and he was rough-looking but gentle man. But most of all I loved how author built up growing attraction between the two of them, it was a very enjoyable read!
I loved how dangerously sexy (and a little bit kinky) this novella was! It was admirable how putty I was in author's hands with all that anticipation she created! On the top of that, there was element of mystery and surprise, which added feel of excitement to this story.
I highly recommend this! Rarely I get to read erotic novella with actual storyline! I am hoping for more of Rachel and Murphy in the future :)
About the Author
Carrie Elks lives near London, England and loves to write sexy stories with a dash of intrigue. At the age of twenty-one she left college with a political science degree, a healthy overdraft and a soon-to-be husband. She loves to travel and meet new people, and has lived in the USA and Switzerland as well as the UK.
Nowadays, she spends her days sorting out people's problems at work and her evenings glued to a computer keyboard. An avid social networker, she tries to limit her Facebook and Twitter time to stolen moments between writing chapters.
When she isn't reading or writing, she can usually be found baking, drinking wine or working out how to combine the two.