She lives by the book—and is still searching for her happily ever after.
Darcy Wilde has tried hard not to live up to her last name. As a librarian in Atlanta she lives a fine life far away from the football-obsessed town of her childhood. But when her beloved Grandmother needs help, Darcy takes a leave of absence and heads back to the home and past she left behind.
He knows how to play the field—and is in no rush to settle down.
Robbie Dalton knows a thing or two about painful pasts. After bouncing around in foster care and the Army for years he is finally ready to move on and make a home for himself in Falcon, Alabama as the newest high school football coach. Sparks fly when the sexy new coach and the sharp-tongued librarian meet, but neither of them is looking to make ties.
But when it comes to love, sometimes you’ve gotta throw away the rule book to cross the finish line…
Everything changes when Darcy falls in love, not only with the gruff, protective, and smoking hot man who's sharing her days and nights, but also with the complex tapestry of people who weave Falcon together. Could this be where she belongs - and who she belongs with?
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This is the first book I have read by Laura Trentham and it was a good book. I really did like Robbie and Darcy together. I thought they were the perfect match from when they first met. The more time they spent together you could see the connection becoming deeper between them even though they were fighting it.
I really did love how Darcy created the rumor that Robbie was gay. I couldn't help but laugh out loud. I thought it was sweet that she offered to pretend to date him in order to clear up this rumor. Before you know it these pretend dates start to feel like real ones and starts to become much more.
Even though I did enjoy this book, I did feel like it was moving a little slow in the romance department. Don't get me wrong I did like the fact they just didn't jump right in bed with each other, but you can tell both Robbie and Darcy were holding back even through their attraction to one another.
I love Luke and Darcys relationship and banter. You can tell they have always been close and look out for one another. I adored how Luke shared his letters from Darcy with Robbie when they were in the Army. That was super sweet! I cant wait to find out more about Luke for sure.
I did like the characters and the town that was created. Even the secondary characters were great. I hope I get the chance to read about everyone of them. Some parts of the book were funny. I am looking forward to reading book 2 in this series now that I have more of a background . I cant wait to see what is in store for the second book in this series.
About the Author:
Laura Trentham is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance. She is a member of RWA, and has finaled multiple times in the Golden Heart competition. A chemical engineer by training and a lover of books by nature, she lives in South Carolina.
Falcon, Alabama, July
“Abandon all hope ye who enter here,” Darcy Wilde intoned with the city limits sign in sight. Tenacious kudzu vines wove up the metal poles and partly obscured the lettering. She gave it the finger. Childish? Yes, but infinitely satisfying.
Blue and white lights whirled from the shadow of the trees lining the two-lane road. She dropped her head to the seat back and eased to a stop on the shoulder. The leather seat squeaked against her legs, and an asphalt-seared breeze ruffled her hair. A car door slammed, prodding her heart and bottoming out her stomach. She stole a peek in her mirror. The cop sauntered up with the gait of a former athlete, his football-sized paunch protruding over the strap of his gun belt.
“Hot little ride, ma’am. Do you know why I pulled you over?” His words melded into a self-satisfied, over-confident drawl.
“Not a clue.” She pasted on an innocent smile.
“Going a little fast, and did I see you shoot me the bird, ma’am?”
Her sigh wiped the smile away. Of course this was how her blazing reentry into Falcon would go. “Not you. The sign. How’ve you been, Rick?”
The man settled one hand on the door, one on the front window joint, and loomed over the open convertible roof. His shadow offered a smidgen of relief from the early afternoon sun. Mirrored sunglasses disguised the roam of his gaze, but by the tilt of his head, he was checking out her legs, exposed by well-worn cutoffs.
“ Dar-cee Wilde. Well, I’ll be. Where you been hiding? Atlanta?”
“ Yep,” she replied, popping the word between her lips.
His neck craned to inspect the small backseat. Bags that wouldn’t fit in the convertible’s toaster-sized trunk crammed every nook. “ Planning to stay awhile, are you?”
She answered the obvious with a one-shouldered shrug. Rick had graduated a few years ahead of her, and had been the starting quarterback his senior year. But he hadn’t been recruited to play college ball and stayed in Falcon, his once good looks marred by extra weight and dissatisfaction.
Rick didn’t attempt gentlemanly eye contact, his gaze fixed somewhere south of Darcy’s face. Lips pursed in a no woman-can-resist-this smirk, he said, “How about we meet up for a drink tonight?”
His attention fired an embarrassed heat, and sweat trickled down her neck to her chest. Nothing, save being cuffed, could stop her hand from tugging the scooped- necked T-shirt north of her collarbone. “Are you going to write me a ticket or not?”
“I’ll let you slide with a warning. Just this once. You in for that drink?”
“Thank you kindly, but no.”
“Really?” Honest surprise drawled the word. “ Another time, then. I’ll be seeing you around, girl.” He rapped her door with a fist before pointing his finger in either promise or threat and disappearing into a black-and-tan police car.
The cruiser slid onto the pot-holed road, spitting gravel and fishtailing like a peacock flashing its feathers. In contrast, she pulled out slow and sedate, even used her signal. The buzzards lazily circling overhead were the only ones to appreciate her conscientious effort.
One thing was certain. Word of her arrival would be around town by supper. A mile from the first traffic light, she turned onto a nearly invisible gravel road between a thick growth of trees. The car crawled through washed-out holes, jostling her side to side, until her grandmother’s house came into sight around a tight bend. The closer she drew, the more her anxiety rose.
She had been raised in the house, for the most part. Occasionally her mother, cleaned up and ready to try again, would sweep into town and whisk her off to an apartment somewhere. Darcy was never there long enough to determine where she had landed. The tall buildings, endless sidewalks, and foreign smells made her imagine she’d rocketed to a different planet. Her only friends had resided in the books her grandmother pressed into her arms whenever she left.
Soon enough, her mother would dump her back in Falcon, full of apologies and excuses. Ada would give her hugs, some cookies and milk, and her life would resume as if the jaunts had been weird little vacations.
Darcy parked on the backside of an old metal shed in a small rectangle of shadow. She got out slowly and stretched, not quite ready to leave the safety of her car. The grass had been mowed recently, the clippings green and the wild onions pungent. Bugs, frogs, and the caw of a pair of crows having a conversation broke the silence, but nothing rustled the trees. Everything was static, waiting.
Leaving her bags, she rapped softly on the front door. No answer. Where was her cousin Logan? She let herself inside— the door never stayed locked— and called out softly, “ Ada?”
No answer. She called out again, her voice rising, “ Ada.” Her heart tapped a quickened rhythm, and she rushed down the hall, checking each room. She found her grandmother asleep on a portable hospital bed in the den. Darcy sighed with a relief that was short-lived.
A white sheet was tucked under Ada’s arms, and her hands were crossed as if positioned by an undertaker. Veins and tendons stood in stark relief under thin, age-spotted skin. Ada looked … old.
That spring, they had gone to a Braves game and had cleared the vegetable garden for planting. Work had gotten busy, and Darcy hadn’t made it back to Falcon in a couple of months, but Ada had sounded like her strong and sassy self on the phone.
Her grandmother stirred. She brushed a hand through her fluffy, white hair and heaved a yawn. Her eyes fluttered. Seeing Darcy, she startled into the pillows before her lips curled into a welcoming smile.
“Darlin’, you’re here. Thank God. I’ve got to take a piss, and I refused to ask Logan to help me. He’s off getting my pills filled.” Ada’s familiar sleep-dampened drawl made Darcy huff.
“What’s your poison, bedpan or toilet?” Darcy forced a bright, unworried tone. Her grandmother’s usually rosy cheeks lacked color and were drawn tight.
“As much as it pains me … bedpan.”
As Darcy helped Ada, they both ignored the stark reality of the situation.
“What did the muckity-mucks at Emory have to say?” Ada asked.
“They’ll hold my job until the end of November. After that, it’s fair game.” At least two women were eyeing her job as head research librarian, and the thought of them jockeying for her position while she was on leave added to her already heightened anxiety.
“I know how much you love Atlanta and your job. I’m sorry about this.” Ada waved a hand that seemed too heavy for her delicate wrist.
A lump of emotion turned in Darcy’s stomach until she felt nauseous. She turned away to fold a fraying multicolored afghan blanket that had been around since her memories began. Sun and age had faded its once vibrant yarn.