Second Chance in Laguna
by Claire Marti
When Sophie Barnes’s fiancé jilts her at the altar, her carefully planned life implodes. Considering her ex’s betrayal to be a rude wake-up call, she leaves everything she knows in San Diego and flees to Laguna Beach. She vows to transform her life by avoiding men for a year and by fulfilling her dream of writing a wildly successful novel.
Sophie’s new landlord, Nicholas Morgan, is a gorgeous, successful architect with a player reputation. He makes it tough for Sophie to remember that she’s sworn to be single. Nick’s avoided the intimacy of a long-term relationship–until Sophie’s independence, courage, and beauty touch his guarded heart. Both Sophie and Nick are terrified of being hurt again, but can they resist the pull of true love?
He poured the wine and offered the glass to her. When his fingers brushed hers, flames shot straight to her belly. Her heartbeat accelerated as she imagined those hands running down her body. Focus, girl, focus.
Flings were in her future, just not yet. She resolved to keep her mind above the table. One problem. Her body wasn’t quite cooperating with her mind.
“So, what brought you to Laguna from San Diego?”
“It’s a long story, I don’t want to bore you with the details.” Sophie stiffened, refusing to allow memories of Doug to ruin her appetite.
“You couldn’t bore me.” He reached across the table and squeezed her hand.
She jolted as once again her nipples pebbled. She yanked her hand back into her lap. What was going on?
“I was going to take a sabbatical, oh hell. I realized I never wanted to go back, so I guess I quit my job at Healthy Woman. I was an editor.” She guzzled down half her glass of wine.
“I’ve seen that magazine. What happened?” Nick leaned closer, heat darkening his eyes.
“The job was fine…” She polished off the rest of her wine. At this rate, I’ll be sloshed by the time our entrees arrive. Slow down Sophie.
Author Bio and Links
Claire Marti started writing stories as soon as she was old enough to pick up pencil and paper. After graduating from the University of Virginia with a BA in English Literature, Claire was sidetracked by other careers, including practicing law, selling software for legal publishers, and managing a non-profit animal rescue for a Hollywood actress.
Finally, Claire followed her heart and now focuses on two of her true passions: writing romance and teaching yoga. Her debut releases from The Wild Rose Press on March 31, 2017 and is the first in the Finding Forever in Laguna series.
Claire Marti will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Second Chance in Laguna is a fun, light, sexy romance by Claire Marti. It isn’t a book that deals with second chances alone, but also with betrayal, insecurities, sabotage and trust.
“Is it better to regret the things you’ve done instead of those you haven’t?”
Sophie, the main character, is a woman who has decided to reinvent herself, to start fresh, right after her fiancé breaks up with her. Regardless of what her friends and family expect from her, she decides to move to another city and start a career that he loves, writing. Not giving a second thought and fully decided to place love and relationships in the back burner as she reaches her main goal: write her first novel.
Because she planned on chaining herself to her computer for the foreseeable future, she crammed the cart with colorful produce, basic supplies, and enough chocolate to repair any crisis.
However, life has other plans for her.
Right now, Nick signaled danger. Too kind. Too handsome. Too everything.
She ends up having a very hot and handsome landlord, Nick. He is the definition of sexappeal, he’s not only physically attractive, but fun. His sense of humor makes you fall in love with him immediately. On his part, Nick has gained a player reputation, even if he’s unaware. He also has ambitious goals in his architectural career that have him concentrated in work and nothing much.
His sole focus for the last fifteen years, besides taking care of his baby sister, was to become one of the top architects in the country, just like his father.
The attraction between them is palpable since the beginning of the story. The dynamic between them has the reader wanting them to understand that they’re meant for each other even if both of them resist to let their relationship to become serious and exclusive. These characters are complex and insecure, but most of all they’re likable, especially the little furry pets that make the story more entertaining and realistic.
“You’d be better off not getting involved with me.” Bullshit. We’re already involved.
Second Chance in Laguna is the kind of book that light, enjoyable and easy to read. It’s romantic and funny, the perfect summer read!
Before you go…
Scoll down to read the post that Claire wrote for my blog exclusively!
Don’t forget to participate in the giveaway and get your copy of Second Chance in Laguna.
Claire Marti will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Guest Post by Claire Marti
I’m very excited to have you meet Claire Marti, author of Second Chance in Laguna. When I learned about her story I knew she was someone I wanted you to meet. She had a story to tell, as we all do, but in her case she refused to let herself down to a terrible desease and achieve wellness through the storm.
Surviving the Unthinkable
How to achieve wellness through the storm
Seven years ago, I received a dramatic reminder that now is the time to live life to its fullest. Not tomorrow. Today. All we really have is the present moment. Here’s my story.
In January 2010, I was living my dream. I had exited corporate America the year prior and was happily balancing teaching yoga full-time with a blossoming writing career. I was in a relationship with the man of my dreams, living close to the ocean. To put it simply, I was happy. Out of the blue, I found a lump in my breast. I was shocked and devastated, especially because I had a clear mammogram three months earlier. I was healthy, fit and felt invincible
Over the course of that year, I endured three surgeries, six rounds of aggressive chemotherapy, and almost two months of daily radiation. I balanced out this assault on my body with a primarily plant-based diet filled with anti-oxidants, daily exercise, acupuncture, and most importantly, yoga. My doctors often commented that I was their “Superwoman Patient” because I never got really nauseous through chemo and seemed to maintain a comparatively high level of energy during treatment.
Don’t get me wrong: many days I was exhausted and despondent. Despite the fluctuations in my energy levels, I continued to teach most of my yoga classes and got certified to teach Yoga for Cancer Recovery while undergoing chemotherapy myself.
Cancer attacks your body, but it also attacks your mind and heart as well. Feeling physically sick often isn’t the biggest challenge of a serious illness. Mental perspective and emotional balance are vital to navigating through the tough challenges. Were my values and emotions aligned with my daily life?
Before cancer, I had learned at a young age to live in the here and now. I know first-hand that your loved ones can be snatched from you too soon. I’ve lost three brothers and my older sister is also a breast cancer survivor. I understand loss. I understand grief. So, I have never hesitated to take risks, to make changes, to shift gears, careers, you name it. I’ve always wanted to squeeze all that I could out of every day. It is easy to lose sight of that in our busy lives. Cancer can be a wake-up call.
You’d think I wouldn’t need a reminder, especially not one in the form of cancer. After all, in sixth grade I’d won a contest for writing the best essay entitled “The Time is Now.” Seriously. The dubious reward for this honor was reading the essay over the morning announcements to the entire school. Let’s just say I was embarrassed for the rest of the day.
So, how did I choose wellness through that terrible year? After a great deal of crying, screaming, anger, and self-pity, I decided that I would do my best to live in the present through my cancer journey. Teaching and practicing yoga kept me sane. Being able to lose myself in the joy of stepping onto the mat or guiding my students through practice was a blessed escape from my own story, which at times was very dark. Yoga is about becoming present. Yoga is about living in the now and experiencing ease and the discomfort of each day.
Practicing yoga and/or exercising empowers you. It helps to handle side-effects of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Taking some time to boost energy, improve mood, and learn relaxation techniques helps combat fatigue, stress, and pain.
Blogging my experience was another way I coped. Sharing my experiences: the good, the bad, and the ugly helped me and many people told me it helped them and their loved ones as well. I was real. I was raw. I was actually quite entertaining, but I definitely didn’t sugarcoat anything. It was quite a rollercoaster ride. I compiled those blogs into a memoir, Come Ride with Me Along the Big C, in the hopes that I would help and inspire others.
Treatment stinks. Being forced into inactivity and weakness drove me crazy. I hated feeling stagnant. One day, I was happy Claire, thrilled with yoga and love and friends and the sun setting over the ocean and the next, a bitter bald lady curled in a ball, hiding under the covers for hours or even days at a time feeling like the only person on earth.
To counteract the myriad of emotions, I scheduled positive experiences to balance out the dark ones. For the last three rounds of chemo, my husband and I went on some great trips. I didn’t want to postpone vacations until I was done; I wanted to live in the moment, despite the baldness and weakness.
What was the biggest gift of cancer? It varies for most people, but usually there are silver linings in the difficult times. For me? I learned an incredible lesson: I learned how to accept love and support.
I’ve always been independent, always taken care of myself, and always prided myself on keeping it together. I prided myself on my strength. Well, I got to the point where I couldn’t keep it together, where I couldn’t take care of myself, and something profound happened.
When I relinquished the tight leash of control, a huge groundswell of support, love, and
generosity enveloped me. Not just my wonderful husband, not just my family and close circle of friends. No–acquaintances, strangers, blog followers, you name it. Letting go of control allowed me the biggest gift: learning to truly receive.
So, was 2010 the toughest year of my life? Absolutely. Was it also a year of incredible growth and gifts? Definitely.
Most of all, traversing through cancer was a reminder that the time is now to live your life to the fullest.
I’m sure she’ll be happy to hear from you, please leave a comment before you go. Here are her social media pages, make sure to visit her there too.