Welcome to our spot on the Redemption Red blog tour.Book 2 in the Wine Country Romance series by Delancey Stewart this story continues the Wine Country theme but provides a stand alone read.
Love, loss, and a smoky red
When Audrey Montgomery's carefully planned life collides with the self-destructive path Tyson Dawes is on, neither of them can predict what will happen next.
Audrey is a diligent and self-reliant culinary student at Portland's prestigious Cordon Bleu. She has a clear picture of her future in mind, and it allows little room for the steely-eyed and tormented young man she bumps into by chance while wine tasting with friends.
Tyson Dawes had a perfect childhood, raised among the vines in Oregon's Willamette Valley. But even the most idyllic of upbringings couldn't have prepared him for what he would face as a Marine. He returns to his childhood home angry and haunted by the storms of what he has faced and by those he has lost.
Do opposites truly attract? Can the lure of Audrey's apparent clarity and innocence offer Tyson hope in the face of his emptiness?
THE WINDOWS OF the restaurant were tinted to the point where Tyson couldn't see more than a dark shape approach as he stood outside the door waiting. He thought that the people who'd started the place could've probably stretched a bit to come up with something more original than "Fork," but that's what they'd gone with. He shook his head, chuckling at the lack of irony in the name as the door swung open. On the other side of the door, in the tall industrial space of one of the hottest restaurants in Portland, was Audrey, the girl Tyson hadn't been able to banish from his mind since the day before.
Even though their interaction hadn't exactly been rewarding, Tyson found himself fantasizing about the girl with the thick dark hair and coppery eyes almost constantly. He wasn't fantasizing anything particularly sexual, though his mind would have gone there willingly if he'd let it. He just wanted to talk to her, be near her for some reason.
"Tyson." She said his name simply, quietly, as if she'd fully expected that he would show up here.
Suddenly, he felt uncertain of himself. The heavy bag of wines was pulling down on his shoulder, making him feel lopsided and awkward. Anxiety began to claw its way up his throat, and he felt his vision beginning to darken. He pushed the sensation away.
"Audrey, right?" He willed his body to stop shaking and focused on her amber eyes, feeling himself calm.
"I had no idea you worked here."
"Of course not. There's no way you could have known."
"So we've established that I'm not stalking you." He smiled.
She tilted her head, and the thick hair fell away from her graceful neck on one side. Tyson fought back an urge to run his hand along her delicate jawline. Something about her was a contradiction. She appeared fragile and delicate, but there was such strength in her eyes and attitude.
"Was there some question that you might?" The half smile again. Tyson felt butterflies jump into action in his gut. Why does this girl have such an effect on me?
"Of course not," Tyson laughed easily then. He nodded down toward the cooler bag. "You didn't really get a chance to taste through the wines. Think we could try a "
Just then a loud squealing sound erupted from the street, followed by the sickening crunch of metal. A Volvo SUV had just rear-ended a much smaller Kia, and the entire rear end of the Kia was crumpled and smashed.
As the noise began, Tyson felt his entire body start to vibrate. His heart exploded in his chest and adrenaline flooded his body. Before he knew it, he had pushed Audrey inside the restaurant, one hand on her chest, sending her flying inside where she landed hard against the long table. He slammed the door shut behind himself and ended up in a crouch behind it, hands frantically searching for his weapon. He peered out the tinted window at the street, his hands still uselessly seeking anything he could use to protect himself.
Inside the restaurant, Florence and the Machine played loudly, and a longhaired skater guy was jabbering away on the phone at the podium. Tyson glanced around to find another woman, a redhead with a serious expression, sitting at the bar and staring at him with her pen raised in mid-air, while Audrey had slipped down into a chair at the table and was eyeing him with a mixture of fear and irritation.
His breathing slowly returned to normal and he stood up, wishing he could just disappear. He smoothed his clothing and eventually shoved his hands into his pockets where he hoped they would stay still.
"Um " he looked up at Audrey.
She was rubbing her shoulder.
Horror crept through him as he started to remember exactly what had just happened. He'd shoved her. Hard.
"Oh, God," he said, crossing the floor to where she sat, looking dazed. "Are you hurt?"
Delancey Stewart is the author of the Wine Country Romance Series, featuring A Rare Vintage and Redemption Red. She is also writing the Girlfriends of Gotham series for Swoon Romance. The first book in that series, Men and Martinis, will publish in December 2013.
Stewart has lived on both coasts, in big cities and small towns. She's been a pharmaceutical rep, a personal trainer and a direct sales representative for a French wine importer.
A military spouse and the mother of two small boys, her current job titles include pirate captain, monster hunter, Lego assembler and story reader. She tackles all these efforts at her current home near Washington D.C.GIVEAWAY PRIZE LIST:
* 3 eCopy sets of "A Rare Vintage" & "Redemption Red"
* 2 signed paperback copies of "Redemption Red"
* Oenophilia Wine Glass Puzzle & 1 eCopy of "Redemption Red"
* Wine Wars: A Trivia Game for Wine Geeks and Wannabes & 1 eCopy of "Redemption Red"
* Fashion Women Bubble Bid Bead Statement Party Necklace & 1 eCopy of "Redemption Red"
* Lova Jewelry "Days of Wine and Roses" Reddish-Purple Murano Glass Beaded Stella Fashion Bracelet & 1 eCopy of "Redemption Red"
***Please Note that all shipped prizes are open to US winners only and an eBook or eBook set can be offered in lieu of for international winners***