Monday, December 16, 2013

Frolic and Play: A Groom for Christmas by Cara Marsi

For today's Frolic and Play excerpt we have good-natured snowball fight from A Groom for Christmas by Cara Marsi. Here, Graceann Palmer and her pretend fiancé, Jake Falco, take her niece, Isabella, out to play in the snow. 

Dressed for the outdoors, Jake waited by the front door with Graceann for Lorrie to bring Isabella. Graceann leaned in to whisper to him. “You were really laying it on thick back there in the kitchen.”
She looked so adorably self-righteous with her eyes flashing. He suppressed a laugh, knowing even a smile would get him a punch in the arm. Giving her what he hoped was an innocent look, he said, “I want to spoil you, sweetheart.”
“I’m not you’re sweetheart, angel.”
“Who says you’re not?”
Before Graceann could answer, Lorrie came down the stairs holding a bundled-up Isabella. When she got to the bottom step, she let the little girl down. Isabella waddled over to Graceann and held out her arms. Laughing, Graceann picked her up. “You can barely move in all these clothes, sweetie.” She kissed Isabella on her cheek.
“I don’t want her to catch cold,” Lorrie said.
“She can’t move enough to catch a snowflake,” Graceann said.
Lorrie shrugged.
Jake opened the door. “Let’s go build that snowman.”
Later, a giggling Isabella helped Jake and Graceann roll a huge snowball into place for the base of the snowman. The little girl was covered with snow. “You look like a snowman yourself,” Jake said. Isabella giggled louder.
Graceann knelt to brush snow off Isabella’s coat and adjust the little girl’s hat. At the picture of maternal love, Jake reeled with unexpected longing. Fragments of memories rose in him like spirits arising from a mist—his mother adjusting his hat in the same way Graceann fixed Isabella’s; his mother holding him against her chest in a tender embrace. When he was small, his mom always wore rose-scented perfume. Even now the scent of roses reminded him of her. He had so few memories of loving times with his mother. Too soon, the roses were replaced by the stench of alcohol.
Uneasy with his painful trip down memory lane, Jake gathered snow and molded it between his hands until he had a perfectly formed ball. Today was a time for fun, the kind of fun he barely remembered with his own parents. He readied his arm for the pitch.
Finished with the little girl’s hat, Graceann stood. Her eyes grew wide when she saw the snowball. “Oh, no, you don’t,” she said, laughing. She scooped up a clump of snow to throw at him, but he was too fast. His snowball hit her in the shoulder.
Before he could throw another one, she quickly formed a ball and threw it, hitting him in the arm.
Laughing, Isabella danced around them. “Me, me!” she shouted.
“Over here, Izzie,” Graceann said. “Girls against the guy.”
“I’m outnumbered,” Jake said in mock fright.
The intense snowball fight was the most fun Jake had had in more years than he could remember. His leather jacket was covered with snow, but he didn’t care. He deliberately took a very long time making each snowball to give the females, especially Isabella, ample time to pummel him.
Graceann and Isabella’s laughter tinkled in the clear air, a happy, carefree sound that shot an unfamiliar feeling of joy to his heart. With a saucy smile for him, Graceann handed Isabella a perfectly formed snowball to throw. His chest tightened. Graceann had never looked more sweet than she did at this moment, with her thick hair flying around her face and her cheeks pink from the cold. Her full lips—.
He had no more time to think as Isabella’s snowball hit him in the heart. Clutching his chest, Jake fell onto the snow. Isabella squealed with delight. The females high-fived each other.
Jake’s laughter joined theirs. No matter what happened between him and Graceann, this Christmas with the Palmer family would go down as his happiest ever.

Want to find out what happens after this snowball fight? Then might I suggest picking up a copy of A Groom for Christmas
I will soon be posting my review of A Groom for Christmas! Let me just say that so far it is my favorite holiday read this year. 

Book Blurb:
 When a young woman hires her hometown's former bad boy to be her
pretend fiancé for the holidays, she finds she can't wrap up her feelings as
easily as a Christmas gift.

New York jewelry designer Graceann Palmer has two days to find a fiancé to bring home to Pennsylvania for the holidays so her matchmaking mama will quit fixing her up with jerks. The Falcon, a motorcycle-riding, leather-clad former high school crush, helped her out once before. Maybe he'll do it again.

Jake Falco, man of many mysteries, is back in town on a mission--one the people of Spirit Lake most likely won't appreciate. When Graceann presents him with her crazy scheme, it gives him something he's always wanted--a chance to get to know Graceann. It also gives him the perfect opportunity to add fuel to his project of revenge.

But as Jake and Graceann grow closer, their engagement-of-convenience begins to feel like the real deal--until Jake's secrets are revealed.

Can a relationship that began with lies and secrets bloom like a rare Christmas rose into happily-ever-after?

 Connect with Cara Marsi

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  1. Jakki, thank you for featuring my book today. I'm thrilled you liked it.

  2. What a fun scene! Thanks for sharing it with us.

    1. My pleasure. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Great excerpt!

  3. A delightful scene from a delightful book!!

    1. Have you read it, TessStJohn? I really enjoyed it! :)

  4. Thanks, Aileen and Tessy, for visiting. And thank you again, Jakki, for having me.