As a reader, I love reading excerpts. They give me an idea of the story as well as the author's voice. You can find an excerpt from the first scene of CHRISTMAS MAGIC ON THE MOUNTAIN at my website here. I thought I'd give you a few more excerpts that tell you a little about my hero Sean Hughes from all three of my Mount Hood romances.
From Chapter 7 of RESCUED BY THE MAGIC OF CHRISTMAS (Harlequin Romance 11/08)
Jake set the drink on the bar. "Merry Christmas, Sean."
"Same to you." Sean Hughes sat on the bar stool and raised his glass. "To Nick. Wherever you are, my friend, climb on."
Jake lifted his water glass into the air. "Hear, hear."
Sean glanced back at Carly and the kids. "You finally putting the moves on her?"
Jake clenched his jaw. "Thinking about it."
"You've been going to an awful lot of trouble for her."
"Not just for her. The kids, too." Jake placed his glass back under the bar. It hadn't felt like trouble to him. "I'm only doing what needs to be done."
Sean swirled the beer in his glass. "Is that what's best for Carly?"
"Since when do you offer dating advice?" Jake asked, filling another Nick's Winter Ale and two pale ales.
Sean shrugged. "Nick would be saying the same stuff if he were here."
"If Nick were here, he would have punched me out as soon as he found out I'd kissed Carly."
"True, that," Sean said. "I can punch you for him if it would make you feel better."
Jake handed a server two pints of amber. "Thanks, but no thanks."
Sean took another swig of his beer. "Just remember she's Nick's little sister. No flavor of the month."
"I know that." But saying those words made the fact sink in.
"Thanks for the beer." Sean took a large swig. "Better get back to the parents' house before Denali starts wondering where I've been."
"Denali is a dog."
"She's still a female."
From Chapter 2 of SNOW-KISSED REUNION (eHarlequin free on-line read):
Cocoa left her desk and wove her way toward Sean's office. Telephones rang. Keys clicked on keyboards. Framed, poster-sized photographs of Hughes Snowboards' sponsored athletes covered the wall.
Sean's office door was ajar. He sat on the edge of his desk, looking more like a model from an outdoor magazine than a successful entrepreneur and volunteer mountain rescue team leader.
With hazel-green eyes, a ready smile and thick brown hair, Sean had a reputation around town as a heartbreaker. But Cocoa would trust him with her life. In fact, she had.
From Chapter 6 of CHRISTMAS MAGIC ON THE MOUNTAIN (Harlequin Romance 11/10)
With a smile, she turned over her cards. "Three aces."
Sean flipped his. A two, three, four, five, six.
Her shoulders sagged. "I don't believe it. A straight."
Using his hand, he swept the pile of chips toward him. "We're different kinds of players."
She gathered the deck of cards. "Yeah, you win."
Sean's smile crinkled the corner of his eyes.
Butterflies flapped in her stomach. She focused on his pile of chips.
"That's not what I mean," he explained. "You play by instinct. That means you'll win big, but you'll also lose big. It's an exciting way to play if you don't mind talking the risks."
"You're the risk taker, not me." Zoe tucked the cards into their box. "You climb mountains, snowboard, rescue people."
"I take calculated risks. Ones I'm prepared for."
"And I just go all in."
"That makes you fun to play with," he said.
"Easy to beat."
Laughter gleamed in his eyes. "That, too."
"So how do you decide when you're going to bet?"
He sorted the chips. "I only bet when I'm going to win."
She thought about the times he folded or checked. "So if you don't think you can win…"
"I don't play."
If you haven't guessed, I really like Sean and have from the moment I write him into the prologue that opens RESCUED BY THE MAGIC OF CHRISTMAS. Are there any characters who you like to see make reappearances in series/sequels?
Copyright © 2008, 2010 Melissa McClone, Copyright © 2010 Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. Cover art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. All rights reserved. ® and TM are trademarks of Harlequin Enterprises Ltd and/or its affiliate companies, used under license