Don't forget to comment for a chance to win Book 2 in her Mirror Lake series. MIRANDA WILL KEEP THE DRAWING OPEN THROUGH SUNDAY!
Meet Miranda Liasson
Miranda Liasson loves to write stories about courageous but flawed characters who find love despite themselves, because there’s nothing like a great love story. And if there are a few laughs along the way, even better! She’s a former Golden Heart winner who writes lighthearted contemporary romance for Montlake Publishing and also writes series romance for Entangled Publishing. She lives in the Midwest with her husband, three kids, and Posey, a rescue cat with attitude.
Let's talk about the second book in the Mirror Lake series THIS LOVE OF MINE.
The Story Blurb
Bridal shop owner Meg Halloran spends her days making other women’s wedding dreams come true—and her nights dreaming of her childhood crush, hometown heartthrob Dr. Benjamin Rushford. After a lifetime of wearing her heart on her sleeve, she’s done waiting. Meg’s ready to find love, with or without him. Moving on feels right—until Ben pops an unexpected question.
To win the open ER position in Mirror Lake, Ben has to convince the board that he’s settled and ready to put down roots. His latest stroke of genius? Asking Meg, the local good girl, to be his pretend girlfriend. With her by his side, he’s a shoo-in for the job. But he’s in over his head because, as much as he tries to deny it, Meg tempts him. And if she learns the truth about a secret that has shadowed and shaped his life, will she ever be able to forgive him?
Ooooh - sounds delicious!
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“I can’t dance,” she blurted. It was a trauma from her teenage years, when her prom date had gone so far as to mock her, saying dancing was an indication of how sexual a person was and she was clearly frigid. After that slap down, she’d never set a toe out on any dance floor ever again.
“Everyone can dance.” Ben said it as easily as if he’d said everyone eats or everyone farts. “It’s terrific stress relief. Just fake it.”
How far did she have to go to spell this out? She planted her feet and stood her ground. “You don’t understand. I was a wallflower in high school. I never danced. I only dance at home under the most private of circumstances.” And even then her cats tended to hide under the bed. “I’m completely missing the dancing gene. I suck. A klutz. I’ll totally embarrass—”
She almost stomped a foot, for lack of any other way to get him to listen. “Did you hear what I just said?”
Before she could finish her sentence, he grabbed her by the hand and strode out to the dance floor with her in tow.
“I don’t expect this night could get any worse than it is now. Just follow me.”
Before she could protest, he wrapped his arms around her waist and held her securely. Under any other circumstance, she would have thought she’d died and gone to heaven. But as it was, her hell was only just beginning.
“What possessed you to tell them we’re taking ballroom dance lessons?”
He spun her around and caught her expertly. As if she weren’t dizzy enough from his nearness, his hot body, and dammit, his amazing dance moves. She managed to calm down enough to look him in the eye.
He was still smiling. Not just any old smile, either. One that was big and wide and reached all the way to his eyes. It was a tragedy. Because it said, with every bit of its radiance, that beyond a doubt, Ben Rushford loved to dance. Little crinkles surrounded the corners of his eyes, giving him a mature, sexy look that made Meg want to settle her hands on his cheeks and pull him closer and kiss those lines and every other blessed part of his too-handsome face.
“Stop worrying so much,” he said, boogying down to the beat. “Do you realize what you’ve done?”
“No, but I know what I’m about to do. Embarrass us both on this dance floor.”
He shook her gently. She loved the feel of his hands on her, firm and sure. Hands that knew exactly what they were doing. And she wanted them roaming over every other part of her body right now.
“Meggie, you saved my ass. You reassured Donaldson. You showed you love our town. In other words, you made me look good and I’m so grateful to you for that.”
She scanned his eyes. They held honesty and sincerity in their chocolate-colored depths. And something more. A desire to make her feel better, to take away her discomfort. That unabashedly touched her more than any compliment he could give her. Before she could process all that, the music tempo changed to a hot Havana beat.
“Okay, baby, here we go. Hold on tight!” Ben’s face lit up with clear glee as he spun and twirled, tipped and swayed, keeping a hard and fast grip on her at all times.
He put his hands on her hips and had her mimic his own movements.
Terror threatened to freeze her limbs but she couldn’t not do . . . something. Maybe it was the fact that she felt responsible for doing whatever she could to help him get this job. But maybe it was the look of pure joy on Ben’s face that mesmerized her, made her feel giddy and . . . happy. Yes, happy in a way that made her throw herself into the dancing with reckless abandon for the first time in her life. She shook, she shimmied, she did wild and crazy things like swung and swayed and twisted. The disastrous evening seemed far away, and she was enveloped in Ben’s smile, his confident touch, and his cocky swagger as he clearly loved every move.
He drew her near and said into her ear, “Hang on for the finale, sweetheart.” Before she could respond, he pushed her until she flew away from him, then when their arms were fully outstretched and they were holding on only by their fingertips, he reeled her slowly back in until their bodies were touching, hips swaying together in a rhythm fueled by the erotic beat of the music.
As he flung her out one final time, she lost balance a little and cast out an arm to compensate. She stumbled, clutching at him to avoid falling. That was when she heard the rip.
The first sensation was relief—she could finally breathe. But that was followed quickly by terror as she realized the entire seam along the backside of her dress had ripped wide open, and the entire restaurant was about to catch a full and unobstructed view of her ass.
She spun and backed up against Ben’s body, plastering herself flat against him.
“Wow, Meggie,” Ben said as she ground into his crotch. “I never realized dancing got you so hot.”
She twisted her neck around far enough to send him the stink eye. Then she clutched at him for dear life.
“Do not move away from me,” she managed.
“Sure, no problem. Are you . . . flirting with me? Because if you are, I’m all in.” As she pushed against him, he wrapped his hands around her upper arms, a move which normally would have caused goose bumps to course up and down their lengths.
She scootched up against his chest and put her mouth near his ear. “Listen to me carefully. I’m only going to say this once. I am not flirting with you. My dress tore and . . .”
He stilled suddenly. “And what?” he asked.
“And I always wear undies. I never go anywhere without them. Except maybe for today.”
You had me laughing out loud!! I want more!
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A LIGHTING ROUND OF Q&A WITH MIRANDA LIASSON
MIRANDA: I have been getting lost in stories since I was old enough to read. My mom used to take me to the library in our small town often, and the head librarian there was very kind and patient. She was always making suggestions about good books and holding books for me, and exposed me to many wonderful books I never would have read. She looked out for me! I read everything, from fairy tales to literary classics to every beat-up Barbara Cartland paperback I could get my hands on.
NAN: What’s your favorite movie of all time?
MIRANDA: The summer of 1980, The Empire Strikes Back came out. I was a teenager, working at a gas station, filling up cars (yes, before self serve!), washing windshields, and checking oil. I was also suffering a broken heart. I saw Empire with my girlfriends and found myself so captivated with Leia and Han Solo, I saw the movie three more times that summer (twice by myself!) Oh, the power of a handsome scoundrel! Leia was a kick-butt woman character—I mean, she was a kick-butt Princess, how much better can that get! who could dish it out to Han as fast as he could dish it back—and they had chemistry out the wazoo.
And that kiss! That wonderful, amazing scene where he says There aren’t enough scoundrels in your life and she says I happen to like nice men and he says I’m a nice man and then she says No, you’re not. I imbibed that! Totally lapped it up and came back for more.
You must be excited that the next Star Wars is bringing back Hans!
NAN: Is writing or story-telling easier for you?
MIRANDA: I seem to think the best on paper. Ask me to actually tell a story or a joke out loud and I’m sunk. Weird, huh?
NAN: What’s your favorite kind of story to get lost in?
MIRANDA: I love smart, sassy heroines and guys who have a heart of gold that maybe can’t be seen immediately because they’re dealing with other problems. But once they get over their issues, they are true blue honest-to-goodness fabulous guys who love with all their heart.
NAN: What is your favorite tradition from your childhood that you would love to pass on or did pass on to your children?
MIRANDA: My mother was Polish American and she passed down to us the tradition of Polish Christmas Eve. Originally, we’re told there were twelve courses, one for each apostle. But we “only” have eight. It’s an elaborate affair with many traditional foods that we’ve kept intact. The meal begins with whiskey shots! The first year I brought my now-husband to dinner, he was shocked, because even the littlest of the kids gets a taste! (Talk about corrupting kids early :)
It’s kind of amazing, because my mother is gone, my brother and sister-in-law’s kids are grown and some of them married, and our spouses from different backgrounds but we all gather every year and make and embrace this amazing meal. My mom would be so proud. It’s a lot of work!
One thing we don’t do is put hay on the table. My mom said that when she was a little kid, the table caught fire! Yikes!
Sounds fabulous!! (Everything except the whiskey shots!)
NAN'S GOTTA ASK: What’s something you’d like to tell your fans?
MIRANDA'S GOTTA ANSWER: Thank you! This is the first year I’ve been published, and I’ve had three books release. I really appreciate the support and kind comments!
Ahhh - that's lovely.
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MIRANDA WANTS TO KNOW--Did a movie or book impact you like The Empire Strikes Back affected me? Please share!
COMMENTERS -- MIRANDA is giving away a signed copy of This Love of Mine (North America only).