Turning Back Time by Elisabeth Barrett
If you could go back in time and speak with your eighteen-year-old self, what would you say? Would you give practical advice like, “Major in engineering?” Or would your advice pertain to matters of the heart, such as, “When you meet the one you won’t know it at first, but stay the course.” Or perhaps you would say something super specific, such as, “Make sure to ask that guy in your freshman seminar with straight brown hair to be in your study group—trust me!” Or maybe, “That girl who annoys you so much will end up being your best friend, so just give it time.”
Personally, the advice I’d give my eighteen-year-old self would be this: “Stop worrying and follow your heart. There will be some serious bumps, and a couple of hard left turns, but it will all work out in the end.”
The characters in my latest book, Once and Again, would kill to go back in time and give themselves some good advice. It’s a second-chance love story with a double reversal-of-fortune twist where Jake (tattooed bad boy) goes from rags to riches through a combination of luck, smarts, and sheer grit, while Carolyn (debutante good girl) is forced to abandon her socialite lifestyle after her father trusts the wrong person and loses all of their money. While it takes years for Jake to work himself into the man he knows he can be, Carolyn’s fall from grace happens pretty much overnight.
Carolyn finds herself right back where she and Jake met fifteen years earlier—at Briarwood, her family’s old golf club. But now she’s working there and Jake is the club’s new owner. Carolyn is struggling to find her place in the world, and it doesn’t make things any easier that the boy she turned her back on is now her boss. She’d do everything over again if she could, but in life, there are no do-overs. But if she could go back in time, she’d probably give herself these words of wisdom:
1. Be kind to everyone. You never know who you might need to call on for a favor down the line.
2. Money isn’t everything, but it sure is nice to have.
3. Don’t trust lawyers whom you did not personally retain.
4. If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
5. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
6. Tell mom you love her. A lot.
7. Always apologize if you’ve done something wrong.
8. Keep your chin up. You are stronger than you think.
9. Follow your heart, especially when it comes to Jake Gaffney.
10. Never write off a second chance.
I’m glad to say that even without this advice, Carolyn ends up where she’s supposed to be. And while the advice might have helped to smooth out some of life’s ups and downs, Carolyn’s journey in Once and Again wouldn’t have been as compelling to write…or to read.
For readers of Shannon Stacey and Susan Mallery, the heartfelt new Briarwood series begins with a tale of forbidden love, broken promises, and second chances.
Growing up in Eastbridge, Connecticut, Carolyn Rivington was a young debutante who did whatever her parents asked. So when her father demanded that she break things off with the boy from the wrong side of the tracks or else, she did. Now Carolyn’s family is deep in debt. She’s no longer a member of the Briarwood Golf and Yacht Club, she’s an employee. And the tanned, tattooed, dangerously handsome stranger who saunters into her lobby isn’t just her new boss . . . he’s also her first love.
The last time he saw Carolyn, Jake Gaffney was in the back of a police cruiser, handcuffed and humiliated. But seeing her again stirs other memories: a blanket on the beach, the moon above their heads, and the most expensive bottle of wine he could afford. Now the tables have turned. As a real-estate magnate and Briarwood’s new owner, Jake doesn’t have to answer to anyone. But now that he’s back home, he’s finding it hard to live down his old reputation.
Before they can move forward, Jake and Carolyn must face their pasts. But it’ll take more than sizzling chemistry for them to heal old wounds and return to the love they once shared.
You can read an excerpt from Once and Again here and enter a larger giveaway.
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Elisabeth Barrett lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and spends her days teaching, editing, writing sexy contemporary romance, and enjoying time with her sometimes-bearded husband and three spirited children. She is constantly perfecting her home-work-writing juggling act, but in her free time she loves to hike open space preserves, grow orchids, bake sweet things her husband won't eat, and sing in grand choruses.
To find out more about Elisabeth and her books, please visit her website at http://www.elisabethbarrett.com or join her mailing list at http://eepurl.com/u05tH.
Elisabeth is giving away one e-copy of Once and Again. All you have to do is answer this question in the comment section and you’ll be entered to win (Don't forget to fill out the Rafflecopter. This way you don't have to have your email address published.): What would you tell your 18-year old self? Contest ends July 25, 2015 at 9pm PST.a Rafflecopter giveaway