I’m a sucker for a second chance romance trope. Maybe it’s my own twisted way of trying to right the wronged relationships in my past…or not. Regardless, I enjoy reading and writing stories where two people who were separated find their way back to each other. And why not combine my love of food and traditions in the mix, too?
I stumbled upon my Tangled Hearts series while writing my first book, which remains under my bed until a time when I decide I want to dust it off and re-tool it for a prequel. It was through the journey of my first story that I found the DiFrancesco family and my voice as a contemporary romance writer. This hand-gesturing, loud-talking, nosy family is not a replica of my own, but we share many of the same Italian traits and traditions that will hopefully captivate the reader. They also serve as comedic relief to hopefully diffuse some of the tension from the suspense sub-theme of the stories.
The books in my Tangled Hearts series are about strong and determined women who can stand on their own feet. They don’t think they need a man…until they do. They’ve been burned by love and are not looking to fall in love. But when danger spirals around them, my feisty heroines will need to reach out to the men they least expect to untangle themselves from danger and from the hardened shell around their hearts.
In my current release and second book in the series, FOREVER IN MY HEART, Vicky DiFrancesco has worked hard to rise above being the family member with no career ambition. She’s finally gotten her derailed life back on track and has opened the hot new café in town in the space that used to be her family’s pizzeria. With her goals and priorities clear for the first time in her life, she’s not looking for any complications. Especially when it comes in the form of her high school sweetheart, now home from the army and looking hotter than ever with all six-feet of washboard abs and bulging biceps.
When Jamie DiSilva returns home from the army, he’s faced with ailing parents, a floundering new business, and a trio of thugs. He’ll need to take matters in his own hand to protect those he cares about most. At the top of his list is the girl he never forgot, all grown up and sexier than ever. To protect her from danger, he’ll need to get past her stubbornness and convince her to allow him to renovate her outdated café so he can search for something hidden by a dead man. Something that three deadbeat thugs are willing to injure, kidnap and possibly kill to get their hands on.
Here’s an excerpt from FOREVER IN MY HEART:
She leaned her forehead against his. “Oh, God. What are we doing?”
He kissed her, trying to recapture the passion that had evaporated with Lucy’s grand entrance.
“We’re doing what feels right. What is right,” he said.
She put her hands on his shoulders. “Please…this is too much, too fast. I’m not ready for this, yet.”
Yet, not never.
“You seemed ready a few minutes ago.”
She fastened her bra and pulled her dress up onto her shoulders. “It’s like I told you before, there’s more to us than what we’re feeling. My family is a huge obstacle.”
“I understand. But don’t you think it’s unfair of them to judge me, to judge us together before they’ve gotten to know me. They knew the punk kid I was. That’s not who I am now. Give me a chance to prove to your family I’m not like my brothers and that we’re good together.”
“I’m not sure. This is so confusing.”
“Okay. Just don’t tell me you won’t ever be ready for it.”
She sighed. “I’d be lying if I said that.”
He smiled and though still aroused and wanting her so much that his entire body vibrated, he stepped back but kept his hands on her waist.
“Tell me what you want, but please don’t shut me out.”
He could see the war in her—the woman fighting for what her heart wanted versus what was expected of her.
She tilted her head back. “May God not strike me down for what I’m about to say. How would you like to go to a birthday party?”
You can buy Forever in My Heart at:
From February 20th through March 9th Maria is having a release giveaway. Stop by for a chance to win a digital copy of Untangle My Heart, the first book in her award-winning Tangled Hearts series or a $5 Amazon GC.
About Maria K. Alexander
Maria K. Alexander is an award-winning author of contemporary romance. When not writing, Maria loves to read, bake, downhill ski, visit the beach, and watch romantic comedies. Maria lives in New Jersey with her husband and children, and writes in her “spare” time between juggling a full-time job and her kids’ busy schedules. You can keep in touch with Maria at http://mariakalexander.com.