Never close your eyes while you’re getting a tattoo—even if you have a pathological fear of needles.
All Liv Voretti wanted was a small, tasteful butterfly tattoo. What she got was her (now ex-) boyfriend’s name—the worst goodbye present in the history of the universe. With the tattoo about to be revealed thanks to a strapless bridesmaid dress, Liv comes up with a desperate plan to keep her judgmental parents from pulling their loan for her clothing design business. Convince the stable, responsible, incredibly hot family friend—who happens to have the same name as her ex—to pretend to be her boyfriend.
Even with your eyes open, sometimes it's hard to see what's right in front of you.
The Vorettis are the closest thing to family Caleb has, and he’s not about to risk that relationship for a fling with Liv. She'd be bored with his predictable, color-inside-the-lines lifestyle inside a week. They're just not compatible, even if she is the last person he thinks about before he falls asleep.
But when Liv comes to him for help, he can’t say no—not when he’s the reason she ended up with her jerk of an ex in the first place. But as their pretend relationship becomes all too real, Caleb must decide whether he’s going to stick to the plan, or take a chance on a woman who isn’t the person he’s looking for, but might be exactly who he needs.
READERS: Describe your dream tattoo for a chance to win an ebook copy of Love And Learn, first in the Voretti Family Series. Be sure to leave your email contact info in comments so Jillian can enter you in the randomizer. Good luck everyone!
Buy Links for Pretty in Ink:
Liv’s stomach dropped to the carpet and quivered. She was inches from Caleb’s bare chest, wearing his half-way unbuttoned shirt. Her parents were going to jump to the obvious conclusion, the same way they had when they’d barged into her sister’s apartment four months ago and found Annabelle in bed with Ty. Their voices were already screaming through her head.
Olivia Marie Voretti!
I’m disappointed in you.
Is this the behavior of a mature businesswoman?
Caleb would probably jump in there with them.
She ignored the stab of hurt that thought generated. She didn’t care that Caleb saw her as an annoying little sister, forever frozen in time as an awkward thirteen-year-old. The only thing she was worried about was her loan, and how quickly her parents would take it away once Caleb filled them in on the tattoo.
Except, Caleb hadn’t said a word. Neither had her parents. Why weren’t they yelling? Was her dad actually smiling?
“This, uh, isn’t what it looks like,” she tried.
“Of course not,” Dad said. Yep—definitely a smile.
What the hell?
“We didn’t see a thing.” Mom winked at Caleb, who looked like he wanted to curl into a ball, stuff himself behind the row of peach dresses lined up in Ella’s closet, and die.
It was almost like her parents were happy to have caught her fooling around with a guy. But that didn’t make sense. The last time she’d made the mistake of telling her parents she was going on a date, they’d called her every hour to “check in.”
That’s because you were with CJ. If you’d been with Caleb… The Annabelle voice in Liv’s head faded out, too circumspect to finish the sentence, but Liv already had the idea. She was lucky this wasn’t the seventeenth century, because if arranged marriage were still socially acceptable, her parents would be offering Captain Integrity all their goats in exchange for taking Liv off their hands. In their eyes, he was the perfect man—the solid, responsible, good citizen needed to counteract Liv’s flighty DNA. Even as Caleb tripped all over himself, trying to explain the shirt fiasco, they were probably imagining a pack of perfectly groomed grandchildren who would eat all of their vegetables, do extra credit homework for fun, and earn perfect scores on their SATs.
She could rip Caleb’s shirt off right now and show them the tattoo, and they’d congratulate her on her wise decision instead of revoking her loan. It was too bad she hadn’t really hooked up with Caleb.
Here's a blurb from the giveaway book, Love and Learn:
Annabelle Voretti has only ever taken one risk in her life—and it sent the most popular boy in school running straight from her arms to the Navy, leaving her with a raging case of sexual insecurity. Now Ty wants a second chance, but Annabelle has learned her lesson. Except what if? What if the only way for Annabelle to heal her sexual scars is to go back to the source? Some one-on-one tutoring from Ty might be just what she needs—if only she can find the courage to take one more crazy risk
An avid reader, Ava Blackstone didn’t discover her love for writing until she’d obtained her PhD in chemistry. As an alternative to the structured world of science, and with a little motivation from her husband, she began writing romance novels. Now she can’t imagine doing anything else.
Ava is a winner and two-time finalist in the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart® contest and has published five short romance stories in Woman’s World magazine. She is currently hard at work on the next contemporary romance in her Voretti Family series. You can find her at her website: http://avablackstone.com.
Interview with Ava Blackstone
Jillian: What's the first book you remember reading?
Ava: Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban. It's about a badger girl who doesn't want to eat anything but bread and jam, but eventually learns to appreciate all kinds of food. The book goes into absurd detail about every meal the characters eat--basically, it's food porn for children. So, I guess I was food-obsessed from a young age.
Jillian: What was the first story you remember writing?
Ava: A really bad rip-off of Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, in which school supplies fell from the sky instead of food. Yes--it was every bit as horrific as it sounds. Let us never speak of it again.
Jillian: What's your favorite movie of all time?
Ava: One??? How about four.
1) Strictly Ballroom: I love the unapologetic over-the-topness and the dreamy love story. I blame the dancing-on-the-roof-in-front-of-a-Coke-billboard scene for the fact that I smile every time I see a Coke ad. Masterful product placement, guys.
2) The Princess Bride: One of three movies I had on video as a kid. I've watched this so many times, I pretty much have it memorized.
3) The Usual Suspects: The plot still blows me away.
4) A Room With a View: Hilarious and romantic. Plus there's that scene where the guys are running around the pond naked. So awesome.
Who's your favorite villain?
Ava: Boyd Crowder from Justified. Sure, his moral code is a bit questionable, but he's fiercely loyal to the people he loves, and he gets things done. The romance reader in me really wanted him to get a happily-ever-after ending, but the show's writers didn't cooperate. So rude.
Jillian: Raylan's best frenemy—love Boyd Crowder!
Jillian: Be honest, when reading 1st person...do you miss the hero's POV?
Ava: It depends on the book. In general, I am a big fan of the hero's POV. I read a lot of first person POV books that have alternating POV chapters, so you get one chapter from the hero's POV, and then one from the heroine's POV.
Jillian: What's the first thing you do when you finish writing a book?
Ava: I start plotting the next book. Plotting is my favorite part of the process, because the idea is still shiny and new and I haven't messed it up by trying to write it. And, because I haven't let myself play around with this shiny new idea while I was finishing the previous book, I'm super excited to get to it.
Commenters: Describe your dream tattoo for a chance to win an ebook copy of Love And Learn. Be sure to leave your email contact info so Jillian can enter you in the randomizer. Good luck everyone!