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There are two things Max “Deke” Deacon can always count on: 
his old high school teammates and Fitz Hawkins.

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Synopsis

Jen Doyle delivers a home run of heart, heat and plenty of laughter in this contemporary romance, perfect for fans of Jill Shalvis’s Pacific Heat series

There’s one thing Max “Deke” Deacon can always count on besides his old high school teammates: Angelica “Fitz” Hawkins. But no matter how much Deke might secretly fantasize otherwise, a relationship with one of his best friends is off limits. Until one unexpectedly smoldering encounter has Deke and Fitz giving in to the feelings they’ve both been fighting for far too long.

Fitz knows for a fact that it is not better to have loved and lost. After losing her parents, she’d rather lock up her heart and throw away the key than endure that kind of pain again. If that means giving up any hope of a lasting relationship, then so be it.

But with Deke, Fitz feels dangerously close to falling in love. She can’t risk another broken heart–especially if it means losing one of her best friends for good. Now it’s up to Deke to convince her that the safest place she could ever be is right here with him.

This book is approximately 100,000 words

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Excerpt

“Hey, Dorie,” she heard from above her. “Do you know where Fitz wants these bottles of water?”

Speak of the devil. Fitz brought her head up a little too suddenly, banging it on the underside of the table. “Ouch!” Her hand going to the back of her head, she came up frowning, and…

Oh, God, was he this gorgeous before? Had he always smelled amazing?

Doing everything she could to keep herself immune from his physical charms, she spun on her heel. “Back here.”

Very specifically not looking in Deke’s direction so that she didn’t give anything away, she forced herself to act exactly as she always did around him. Except she suddenly couldn’t quite remember how that was. Did she flirt with him? Did she flat-out ignore him? Did she generally just go around in a state of low-level irritation? Because right now she had absolutely no clue.

She had even less of a clue as she bent down to open up the lid to the cooler and he crouched down next to her, his head so close all he’d need to do was turn it slightly to the left and his mouth would be on her breast.

And was that…?

Oh, hell, no, her nipples had not just hardened. She slapped her arms over her chest.

Because they had. And Deke, with his superhero sex god extra sensory perception, had definitely noticed. He at least had the decency to look down at the ground as he grinned.

“It’s the cold,” Fitz snapped. “From the cooler.”

Pushing the bottles down into the ice, Deke just answered, “You’d be amazed at all the bits and pieces I can warm up with my tongue.”

christie review 5 star a

I loved this friends to lover’s story by Jen Doyle! The cover and synopsis were the first things to catch my attention. However, I was completely hooked when I read the first few pages. I was instantly pulled into the book by the characters from that first scene, and I knew I would love Deke and Fitz.

Deke and Fitz have been friends for half of their lives. Everyone in town loves Deke. He runs a bar and is the best little league coach the town has ever seen, plus he’s gorgeous as well…and that makes him incredibly attractive to the ladies in town. No woman has been able to catch him though. Fitz assumes the town watches her carefully for very different reasons and not good ones, but for the mistakes her father made and the fact that she was orphaned after a tornado took both parents from her. Deke is the only person who has ever come close to really knowing her, but she still has protective walls around her heart. Things begin changing between them when they start seeing each other in a different light, as more than friends. Each of them try to avoid it, but then one encounter changes everthing. Will Fitz finally be able to trust someone with her heart, or will their friendship be destroyed? One thing is for sure…things will forever be changed between them.

Friends to lover’s books are my all-time favorite, and this one is great!!! I loved the friendship between Deke and Fitz. They know each other like no one else does, so it makes sense that they would end up together. Although, Fitz will fight it every step of the way. Honestly, she feels like she has no choice. My heart broke for her knowing all that she has gone through. Even knowing what a great guy Deke is and how very much he loves her, I can still see why she’s so scared of trusting anyone with her heart. I love that Deke doesn’t give up on her, but I also understand his frustrations too. I just adore the two of them together. They each complete one another!

I haven’t read the first book in the series, but it is at the top of my list of books to read. I love the way Jen Doyle writes. She has this way of pulling you so deeply into the story that you feel like you are a part of this tight knit group of friends. I hated to say good-bye to them, and I’m looking forward to seeing them again. This is the first book I have read by Jen Doyle, but it most definitely will not be my last. I can’t wait to read more by her.

Abou the author

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A big
believer in happily ever afters, Jen Doyle decided it was high time she started
creating some. Jen is a member of the Romance Writers of America, as well as a
member of the New England, New Jersey Romance Writers and Music City Romance
Writer chapters of RWA. She is represented by Sarah E. Younger of the Nancy
Yost Literary Agency. She has an M.S. in Library and Information Science and,
in addition to her work as a librarian, has worked as a conference and events
planner as well as a Communications and Enrollment administrator in both
preschool and higher education environments (although some might say that there
is very little difference between the two; Jen has no comment regarding whether
she is one of the “some”).

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