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Of Autumn Leaves and New Beginnings
by Nell Iris
Sometimes love finds you even when you’re not looking for it.
Publisher: JMS Books, LLC
Cover Artist: Written Ink Designs
Release Date: September 21, 2019
Length: Novella / 17,809 words / 67 pages
Heat Rating: 2 flames
Pairing / Genre: M/M Contemporary Romance
Sometimes love finds you even when you’re not looking for it.
At 47, Oren Walker isn’t looking for love. When he knocks on Pete Higgins’ door, all he wants is to thank him for helping his mom after she broke her femur. He never expected that one look at the man would make his knees weak and heart flutter.
Pete is happy—albeit a bit lonely—after divorcing his wife of 20 years and isn’t looking to replace her. But when Oren shows up, all grateful and handsome and in that fancy suit, the longing for the deep connection of a relationship flares up inside him.
As the leaves turn yellow, Oren and Pete spend a lot of time in honest conversations. Their attraction grows. Will the two men recognize the promise of new beginnings, and take the chance to find the happiness they both deserve?
It’s been nearly three weeks since Mom’s accident — and the leaves are more yellow than green but the heat still refuses to let go — when my phone rings just as I’m on my way back to my office after a long, infuriating meeting. I don’t recognize the number but accept the call. “Oren Walker.”
“Oren. Hi. It’s Pete. Pete Higgins. Your mom’s next-door neighbor.”
“Oh, hey!” I would be lying if I said I haven’t thought about him these last few weeks. In the shower, before bed, while having my morning coffee. He’s hot enough to set fire to my pants, but that’s only part of the appeal. Mom hasn’t stopped talking about him since her accident; about how gentle he was when he helped her. How considerate and thoughtful and nice he was when she was hurt and scared, and in the days that have followed.
Of course, I noticed all his good sides myself, those few minutes we spent together, and he hasn’t been far from my thoughts whenever I’ve had a free moment.
“I’m sorry to disturb you at work,” Pete says.
“No problem. I just got out of a meeting with some very upset people and could use a friendly voice right now.” I close my office door behind me and throw myself onto my chair. “What can I do for you, Pete?”
“Nothing urgent. I just needed to tell you something.”
“Shoot.” I lean back and close my eyes, rubbing my temples with my thumb and index finger, trying to fend off the threatening headache.
“I just wanted to let you know that I interfered with your mom earlier. She was on her way to the grocery store. On foot, with her crutches, and I managed to catch her when she hobbled past my house.”
I groan. “Oh my God, her stubbornness is unprecedented.”
“Yeah, I hear you, man. I had to sweet talk her forever before I managed to convince her to go back home. The thing that persuaded her was when I lied and told her I was on my way to the store myself so I could pick up whatever it was she needed.”
“I don’t understand. I bought everything on her list the day before yesterday.”
“Nuh-uh. You forgot the chocolate chips. She couldn’t bake cookies for the church bake sale on Sunday. It was a class one disaster and I’m surprised she didn’t call 911.”
I groan again. “I can’t believe her,” I grumble. “I’ve told her, again and again, to call me whenever she needs anything. I bring my phone everywhere. To bed. To meetings. To the fucking bathroom when I take a shit, so I won’t miss her call.”
My rant is interrupted by a boisterous laughter.
“Gaah, I’m sorry. That was way more information than you needed.” My face heats and I slap myself on the forehead. Good job, Oren. Way to seem like a crazed lunatic in front of the nice man!
“Nah, it’s fine.”
“No, I’m sorry. That was highly inappropriate. Mom would be so ashamed of me. It’s no excuse, but I’ve had a long day.”
I rub my temples harder. “I just don’t understand why she won’t call me.”
“Listen. She’s fiercely proud of you and all the hard work you’ve done to get where you are. She told me she doesn’t want to be a bother.”
“I know that. I told her. But she insists that you are busy and stressed and don’t need more on your plate right now,” he says.
“But she’s my mom.”
“Yeah. But take it from me, as a parent. When you’ve spent the biggest part of your life loving and protecting your kids, you can’t just turn it off. It’s instinct. We want to be the strong, invincible protector we’ve always been and it’s hard to accept that the situation might be reversed.”
“Oh.” That makes a lot of sense; I’ve never thought about it like that. “Thanks. That was a lot more helpful than you probably realize.”
He laughs. “Yay! Who woulda thought? Me doling out parenting advice!”
“You’re better than you give yourself credit for.”
Meet the Author
Nell Iris is a romantic at heart who believes everyone deserves a happy ending. She’s a bona fide bookworm (learned to read long before she started school), wouldn’t dream of going anywhere without something to read (not even the ladies room), loves music (and singing along at the top of her voice but she’s no Celine Dion), and is a real Star Trek nerd (Make it so). She loves words, bullet journals, poetry, wine, coffee-flavored kisses, and fika (a Swedish cultural thing involving coffee and pastry!)
Nell believes passionately in equality for all regardless of race, gender or sexuality, and wants to make the world a better, less hateful, place.
Nell is a bisexual Swedish woman married to the love of her life, a proud mama of a grown daughter, and is approaching 50 faster than she’d like. She lives in the south of Sweden where she spends her days thinking up stories about people falling in love. After dreaming about being a writer for most of her life, she finally was in a place where she could pursue her dream and released her first book in 2017.
Nell Iris writes gay romance, prefers sweet over angsty, short over long, and quirky characters over alpha males.
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2 thoughts on “RELEASE BLITZ – Of Autumn Leaves and New Beginnings by Nell Iris – #Excerpt #Giveaway”
Ooooooh, I love that promo picture with the cinnamon and the apples!! It’s so autumn-y! You make great promo pictures!! 🙂
Thank you for sharing ❤️
Thank you! As soon as I saw that mockup, I knew it was the perfect one for this book. ❤️