Love in Light and Shadow is Lucy’s contribution to the Summer in Snow Valley Set. I got to proofread her manuscript when it was in the final stages and I loved the way she used light and shadow imagery throughout. The characters are fun and there is some pretty great chemistry between them. It’s definitely a fun summer read.
Mercedes O’Shay has sworn off gorgeous men because they have a tendency to break her heart. When she meets her new neighbor, Chet Bauer, she immediately puts him in the Do Not Date category based on his well-defined muscles and stunning blue eyes. But the more Mercedes learns about the cowboy who reads classics and forges iron, the more she realizes the heart doesn’t see in black and white; it sees light and shadows.
Mercedes looked at the freshly mowed grass. Having an English teacher for a father, Mercedes had been raised on a steady diet of classic and contemporary fiction. She was about to ask Chet what types of books he read, when Whitney raised her hand and called toward the children at the buffet table, “Honey, don’t use that much dressing!” She let go of Chet’s arm and sprinted away. “Excuse me,” she said over her shoulder.
Chet stuffed his hands in his pockets and nodded toward the buffet table. “Sawyer has a history.”
Whitney pulled a bottle away from a younger version of herself.
“When he was four, he drank an entire bottle of ranch dressing.”
“Yuck.” Mercedes pressed her hand to her stomach. “When I was two, I ate a stick of butter.”
Chet grinned. “The inside of a pumpkin pie.”
“That’s not so bad—it’s the best part.”
“Before it was cooked,” he said with a triumphant grin. “Licked it up like runny ice cream.”
“Ugh!” Mercedes stuck her tongue out.
“So, no one gets your name?” Chet asked.
Her shoulders fell. “They all think I’m named after the car.”
“The car was named after Daimler’s favorite niece, so even if you were, technically you’d be named after a girl who captured her uncle’s heart.”
Mercedes’s insides went all gooey. She tipped her head, studying him. This was exactly the type of line that had her dropping her defenses around men. Okay, not that good of a line. No one had ever known that little factoid. She glared just over Chet’s shoulder, working to keep the flutters in her tummy in check.
Chet took a step back. “My family’s always teasing me about knowing useless facts. Usually I censor them better. That one snuck past me.”
Mercedes felt bad. She should censor herself, not him. “I liked it. What else have you got?”
Chet scratched under his chin. “Did you know the same guy who led the attack on the Alamo invented chewing gum?”
“You’re making that up.”
Chet blinked. “Venus is the only planet that rotates clockwise.”
“Ketchup was sold in the 1830s as medicine.”
“And grapes explode when you put them in the microwave.”
She lifted her hand. “That one would be worth testing.”
“I had to clean the microwave.”
Laughing, Mercedes asked, “Where were you when I had to go to all those stuffy dinner parties with my parents?”
Chet motioned for her to sit and scooted another chair closer.
Mercedes found herself relaxing a smidge because of Chet’s easy way. He moved with the grace of a man who used his body, knew what it was capable of, and was comfortable in his skin. She also liked that he wasn’t ashamed to be seen in work clothes. Most of the guys she’d dated would have run into the house and not come out until they were all decked out. She could handle talking to him.
They were going to be neighbors, after all.
Lucy McConnell has always been a reader and a writer. Once caught up in a story, she disappears into a cave until the first draft is done. She writes fantasy, clean romance, Christian romance, historical fiction, and cookbooks (under the name Christina Dymock). When she’s not writing, you can find Lucy volunteering at the elementary school or church; shuttling kids to baseball, soccer, basketball, or football, depending on the time of year; skiing with her family; wakeboarding; cycling; baking; cooking; or curled up with a good book.
Though she grew up in Utah, Lucy didn’t take up skiing until she was 32. It still scares her to look down a steep grade, but since her kids are usually half way down the hill before she gets up the nerve to push off, she has no choice but to suck it up and do her best. She watches a horrendous amount of Christmas movies and DVRs them so she can watch them in the middle of the summer too. Lucy bakes…a lot! But, she swears chocolate desserts come out better when mixed with a little Elvis Presley music. It’s totally true; you should try it.
Visit Lucy’s Website for more info.
And don’t forget, the whole Summer in Snow Valley set is on sale now for only $0.99!