New Adult Contemporary
Kara Marcus is desperate to forget the past and move on. But she can’t escape her choices—especially when she finds herself falling in love…
Since the first day she stepped into her childhood Southern Baptist church, two truths have been engrained in Kara Marcus’s head: sex before marriage is bad and murder is a sin. And that’s why Kara can never forgive herself for what she did at the age of sixteen.
Now, as second semester of freshman year comes to a close, Kara has stood by her high school boyfriend, Ethan. But as they seem to grow further and further apart every day, Kara realizes that she has feelings for someone else: Ethan’s roommate Colt.
Suddenly, Kara’s clear-cut world shifts out of focus, and she’s torn between what her head tells her is right and what her heart is desperately pushing her to do—even if it means committing another undeniable sin...
Colt started to say something, then shook his beer. “I’m out. Want another?”
Three? I’d nursed the second one, so I wasn’t feeling it just yet, and I’d already said and done morethan I would have if I were fully sober. I should stop. I should let my buzz wear off and go sleep in Ethan’s room. But instead, I kicked off my sandals and pulled my legs crisscross on the sofa. “All right, I’ll have another,” I said, mimicking his accent.
He grinned. “Very funny. You know you have an accent, too.”
“Yeah, but mine’s not nearly as sexy.” As soon as the words slipped from my mouth, my eyes went wide and I covered my mouth, my face burning. “I . . .” There was nothing I could say to take it back.
His grin switched to a smirk and he cocked his hip against the kitchen counter, crossing his arms so his biceps bulged against the tightness of his T-shirt. “You think I sound sexy, huh? What else do you think of me?” He started toward me, a slow strut that made my insides ignite. His dirty blond hair fell over his eyes as he studied me. His jaw was covered in fine stubble and I found myself wishing I could run my fingers across it. I flushed.
“All right. How about I tell you what I think of you?” I started to argue, but he continued before Icould get a word out. “I think you’re smart, though you doubt yourself. I think you’re kind, though you’re hard on yourself. I think you’re funny and your laugh draws attention no matter where you are.” He was standing before me now, staring down, his presence a force I couldn’t ignore. “And I think you are the most beautiful person I’ve ever seen in my life. So beautiful, in fact, I have a hard time being around you . . . without staring.”
Melissa West writes young adult and new adult novels for Entangled Teen and Embrace and Penguin/InterMix. She lives outside of Atlanta, GA with her husband and two daughters and spends most of her time writing, reading, or fueling her coffee addiction.
She holds a B.A. in Communication Studies and a M.S. in Graphic Communication, both from Clemson University. Yeah, her blood runs orange.