Say it again... FRANCO GENOVESE. The name just rolls off your tongue. With his Rock Star good looks, witty and charming personality, he will beat right into the top book boyfriend spot in no time! Don't take our word for it, read an EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT of this Rock Star Romance. and ENTER TO WIN!
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"Is it dirty? Please tell me it's dirty?" I know it's not by the tone of her voice, but I have to tease to lighten the mood.
She smiles at my come on, "No," but it quickly fades into her serious face again. "I've never heard you play. I've never listened to Rook. I didn't want it to make things weird between us." She sounds ashamed.
I'm fucking ecstatic—separation of church and state and all that shit. She likes me, for me. "It would be awkward if you listened and thought we were complete shit. You know, because Gus doesn't have a British accent."
A smile breaks out at the jab. "Or idol worship. What if I fell in love with your mad skills and started throwing my bra and panties at you? That would be weird."
"You already do that."
"Shut up, naughty American boy. I also wanted to wait until I could see you perform live because live is always better. A Rook initiation in the wild."
"Are you saying you want me to play for you?"
She nods and it's confirmation, truth, and conviction.
I'm nervous again. Not because I can't perform, I can play in front of anyone, anytime, anywhere. I'm nervous because I don't want to let her down. I'm selfish. I want her to dig what she hears. I know how much she loves music and I want her to be into it. "Turn around," I request as I turn on the stereo behind my drum kit. I don't spend a lot of money, but I did drop quite a bit on this setup and the speakers. I play along to tracks when I practice.
"Why?" she asks as she turns her back to me.
"You have no poker face." She doesn't. Her face is overly expressive and cannot be repressed. Sitting on the stool, surrounded by my kit, I pick up my sticks. And instead of hitting play on the stereo, I sit. It's quiet, still, because I'm staring at her. Staring at her wondering what kind of an indicator this moment, her opinion and my need for approval, is.
"Are you taking your clothes off?" she asks suspiciously, and it rouses me from my thought train that has gone off the tracks.
I laugh and clear my throat. "Sorry to disappoint you, but I can't drum in the buff. I need some restriction down below, or things would get aggressively out of hand. You might lose an eye."
"Can't have you flailing about below the belt then."
"Nope. Close your eyes."
"I already have my back to you," she rebukes, but she already has them closed. I can see her in the reflection of the glass on the frame on the wall in front of her.
"Are they closed?" I ask anyway.
"Good. Now imagine me naked." And with that, I hit play on the stereo and drop into "Redemption."
Sometimes, when I'm in the zone and feeling the song with everything in me, I close my eyes and just let it fly. "Redemption" leads into "Killing the Sun" and it's not until I stomp out the final thump of the bass drum, that I open my eyes to find her standing directly in front of me facing me. I was right about the poker face: non-existent. And I'm so thankful that Gemma apparently has an issue with authority and doesn't do as she's told. Her big eyes are glued to mine, unblinking, and paired with the maniacal grin on her face, tell me she liked listening to me play.
I can't help but match her smile as I switch off the track. "You're shit at following directions, Gem."
"Bloody hell, you gave me no choice." She's fanning herself. "That was a full-on sensory diddle. I needed to watch to get the whole effect." After some lightning fast maneuvering, she slips her bra off from beneath her tank top and tosses it at my face. "Christ, it's like staring into the sun...or at a fucking unicorn...you're all blindingly bright and shiny and enchanting. It's too much, I can't take it," she says as she walks out of the room into the hallway.
Franco Genovese is the drummer for world renowned American rock band, Rook. He's got it all. A killer smile. Tattoos. Talent. Razor sharp wit and humor. And a heart as big, and generous, as they come.
Life is good. Steady. Uncomplicated. Just the way he likes things.
Until one night at an unassuming L.A. bar changes everything.
Enter Gemma Hendricks.
She's a successful young architect from Northern England with an adorable smile, sarcasm for days, and an unparalleled trusting heart.
The attraction is instant.
So is their friendship.
It's also temporary because they'll both be heading home, thousands of miles apart from each other, in a few days.
Or is it?
There's something Gemma wants more than anything else.
And when Franco propositions her to provide what she's looking for, everything changes.
Will it transform friendship into love, or will it be their ruin?
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Bright Side (Book One), Gus (Book Two)