I’m so excited to have Liz Borino come for a stay at my Guest House! She’s giving away a 2-pack of her books to one lucky commenter. Read about her series below. Then I got a question for ya. Simply answer in your comment and leave your email addy in the comment… Enjoy! ~Deena
Top Five Reasons to Read Liz Borino’s Taylor Twins’ Series
- The characters are relatable. When reviewers received What Money Can’t Buy, the sequel to Expectations, several said it was akin to visiting old friends. As a matter of fact, Katie from “BookingIt.net” said, “For those that loved Expectations, What Money Can’t Buy is a must buy! All the characters we met and learned to love in Expectations return and remind us why we loved them in the first place. Their lives twist and turn, with many bumps along the road, but the reader is pulling for them from the first page until the very end.” Wouldn’t you like friends like that?
- They’re not typical romances. First of all, Expectations and What Money Can’t Buy focus on two couples, one a male/female and the other, male/male.
- Speaking of those couples, they’re not typical either. Chris and Aiden are appreciated by fans and critics alike as sweet and loving. In Expectations, Carley helps to pull Matt out of the alcoholism he struggles with. Of course, in What Money Can’t Buy, Matt and Carley’s relationship changes a bit, but pregnancy will do that to you.
- In another way? Totally are romances. Both Expectations and What Money Can’t Buy have realistic, emotionally charged love scenes (analysis from a sexologist). It’s not erotica, but the characters, like people, are revealed by intimate situations.
- If you don’t, the author knows many uses for a curling iron. She’s not afraid to test them out on you. 🙂
Excerpt: Chapter 1 of What Money Can’t Buy:
What Money Can’t Buy
Chris O’ Boyle took a deep breath as he directed the movers on where to put the boxes in their new Hartford home. “I don’t know, Aiden. I think this is too big for the four of us.”
Aiden slipped his arm around his husband’s waist with a smile, “It might be too big if it was just four of us. Your dad has the guest house for him and his nurse and the kids have rooms close to ours, plus a few extra bedrooms.” His Irish accent was thick, as usual when he relaxed.
“My dad living here is just temporary.” Chris reassured, though he wasn’t sure who he was reassuring, Aiden or himself. He wasn’t entirely happy with his father living with them, but after the stroke it was either that or a nursing home. While a nursing home was still on the table, Chris didn’t have the time to research it before they moved. Besides, it just didn’t feel right to put family away, no matter how badly they hurt you.
Aiden saw Chris’s eyes darken. He knew how difficult it would be for Chris to have his father here. Despite the fact that Chris dealt very well with the after effects of the attack his father wrought on him when Chris came out, it still hurt. Aiden squeezed his eyes shut at the thoughts of what happened, but he fought back his own feelings and took Chris in his arms. “Well, good, then we’ll have room for more children.”
Chris turned around in his husband’s embrace and pressed their lips together. “More children, Aiden?”
“I think so. What fun would having only two be?” Aiden smiled and let Chris go when the movers came back inside. He couldn’t wait to get all the crap put away and be alone with Chris. They hadn’t been alone in at least a week now, between the movers, Aiden’s classes, and doctor appointments with Meggie.
Meghan, his sister, was six months pregnant with Chris’s twins. They found out last week she’d have a boy and a girl. Aiden couldn’t imagine a better outcome. He worked with the movers to set up the living room while Chris was with others in what would become his father’s room.
Aiden nodded as the workmen put the entertainment center together and then placed the plasma television on top. When they moved out of their loft in Greenwich Village, Chris and Matt, Chris’s identical twin, debated on who should get the TV. Aiden and Carley, Matt’s girlfriend, sat on the couch and watched the heated debate. Chris and Aiden ended up with it because Carley had her own, which was almost as big. Matt got the leather couch and recliner.
Plasma TV, so unnecessary. Aiden scoffed to himself more than once. He didn’t grow up like this. He and Meghan grew up on a farm in Ireland. The house had three rooms, a kitchen, living room, and a downstairs bedroom where his parents slept. He and Meghan shared a loft area that you could only reach through a ladder. It was a far cry from the six bedroom home, with a pool and a guest cottage, he shared with his husband now.
Chris came in and sat down on the couch next to him, “They’re almost done out there.”
“Are you picking up your dad?”Aiden asked leaning into Chris’s chest.
Chris shook his head as he kissed Aiden’s hair. “No, Matt’s bringing him over around dinner time. I said I’d cook for all of us, but I gotta tell you, I’m not really feeling it.”
Aiden laughed, “If neither of you are cooking, then we’ll be getting to know the local takeout place.” When Chris didn’t respond, Aiden looked up into his golden brown eyes to find a far off look. “Would you like me to go to the store for you?”
Aiden’s question quirked a smile on Chris’s lips, “And what would you buy? No, really, I can’t cook with anything you buy. I swear to god, I tell you to get meat and you buy SPAM.”
“I did that once because it was on sale.” Aiden said and realized that was something they wouldn’t be worrying about anymore. Judging by Chris’s expression, he thought the same thing. To say they were well off was an understatement. The twins each received $50 million from their trust funds and any remaining wealth their father had, which was a lot.
“SPAM is always on sale. There’s no other way to get it out of the store.” Chris smiled and paid the movers when they finished. He and Aiden still had some hours, or days, of work ahead of them.
Aiden took Chris’s hand and smiled, “When did you say Matt was bringing your dad?”
“Six. Why?” Chris answered, appreciating Aiden’s smile.
“Well, I’d say between going to the store and cooking dinner, you’re looking at maybe an hour and a half. I think we have some room for fun in there.” Aiden watched recognition light up on his husband’s face. They sped upstairs without another word.
* * *
“Matt, where are you going?” Carley asked as he finished setting up the living room and reached for his winter jacket.
Matt took a deep breath and counted to ten in his head. It was difficult to keep the irritation out of his voice when he had to keep repeating himself. “I’m going to pick up my dad, get him settled at Chris and Aiden’s and then eat dinner.”
“You’re eating dinner there?”
“Yeah, hon. I’ll bring you back some.”
“Some what?” Carley asked, trying to tone down her frustration. The doctor put her on bed rest at her last appointment because she had bleeding and he feared a miscarriage. It meant she had two options, the bed or the couch. Carley saw this as an opportunity for her and Matt to slow down and spend some more time together. Unfortunately, he didn’t see it that way. Matt worked more. When they worked together it mattered less how much they were in the office. They enjoyed work after starting their marketing company. Enjoyed each other, their clients, and their other business partner, Cyndi. However, Carley did not enjoy the long days when she was stuck at home and Matt was at work. She was hardly looking forward to three more months like this.
“I don’t know.” Matt ran his hand through his hair. “Chris didn’t know what he was cooking when I talked to him.”
“You know I can’t eat shellfish.” Carley bit her lip after the words left her mouth. How often has either of us made shellfish? Instead Matt gave her a pained smile. “I know and so does he. I’m sure it’ll be chicken or steak.” He walked toward the door and glanced over his shoulder, “Do you need anything else while I’m out?”
You. I need you.Carley shook her head. “Thanks, babe. I got everything I need here.”
He nodded and grabbed his keys. “I’ll be home.” She wanted something else, but Matt chose to ignore it. He had to get out of there.
They moved up to Hartford last week, or rather, he and Chris moved them up. Carley couldn’t help because of the baby. So, she stayed with Aiden. These damn hormones were gonna kill him. And they weren’t even in his body. The first few weeks of the pregnancy were fine. Carley was happy, excited. If he was being honest, so was he. Carley didn’t have any morning sickness. Though, Matt did find himself placating requests of mustard and egg sandwiches in the middle of the night. All in all, the first trimester was pleasant. It was just now that she was starting to get a noticeable belly. Matt thought it was beyond adorable. That all changed three weeks ago.
One of the few nights they spent apart, Matt was at his loft hanging out with Chris and Aiden. It’d be one of the last nights they lived together. So, they all sat around playing poker and ragging on each other. The ragging only intensified when Matt answered his cell on the first ring, but he waved them quiet before saying, “Yes, baby?”
“Matt…are you busy?” Came Carley’s hesitant reply.
“Define busy, sweetheart. I’m demonstrating the proper way to play five card, by whooping Chris and Aiden into oblivion. What’s up?”
“The baby, Matt. I…don’t know. I’m bleeding pretty bad…and…” anything else was chocked out by tears.
“I’m leaving now. It’s gonna be alright.” Matt told her, though he had no idea if it was true. He cursed the traffic present even at 11PM in New York City as he picked her up and they drove to the hospital. The doctor told them she was at risk for a miscarriage. After a night in the ER, Carley was put on bed rest. No work, lifting, stress, and…no sex. Matt nearly swallowed his tongue when the doctor said that. Of course, the baby would come first, but damn it, three months? It had easily been five years since he’d gone that long.
Matt shook his head as he turned into the rehab facility where his father stayed until Chris and Aiden moved in. He’d be lying if he didn’t admit he was jealous of their house. He and Carley got a much more modest three bedroom. Quaint, perfect, she’d said. Wouldn’t last if they had more than one child. Shit, where did that come from? It was dumb really. They had more than enough money for something more elaborate. Chris didn’t even like the grandeur. He never enjoyed it. So, why the big house? Because they would have a slew of children to fill it.
Matt parked the car and met a young nurse standing behind his father’s wheelchair. Out of habit Matt noted she wasn’t wearing a wedding ring. Oh yeah…that’s a great habit to have. He gave her a smile and offered his hand, “Hi, I’m his son, Matt Taylor.”
“I’m Sarah.” She smiled and glanced down at Robert.
Matt crouched down so he could look his father in the eye. “Hey there, Dad. How you feeling today?” Matt didn’t expect an answer. He doubted his father could answer. The nurses and doctors swore he had good days. Days when he was more responsive. Matt and Chris witnessed a few of these. Robert would blink in response to questions…and this was an improvement. Just months ago, Robert ran a multi-billion dollar business. And now he couldn’t lift a cup to his lips. Matt stood and gave the nurse…Sarah? another smile, “How is he so far today?”
“It’s been a lot of commotion. What with moving and packing…” Sarah stopped.
“It’s ok; I don’t expect anything out of him.” Matt signed the stack of papers she handed him.
“I’m sure it’ll be better once we get him set up at your brother’s house with a comfortable routine.” She glanced between Matt and Robert. “Um, your brother, Chris? He has a different last name…”
“Oh yeah, he took his husband’s name when they got married.” Matt answered glancing up to gauge her reaction. Chris wanted to disassociate himself from their father as much as possible.
“Oh…I see….” Sarah stammered.
“Is there a problem?” Matt’s eyes darkened with the question. He sensed judgment on her part and he didn’t take kindly to it.
“No, no, I’m sorry. He just never mentioned it in the interview or any of our other conversations…”
Matt studied her for a second before deciding she was far too nervous to really mean harm, “Well, think of it this way, if he asked you a similar question during an interview, you could’ve sued.” He offered a half smile, “Come on, let’s call some help and we’ll get him home.”
Sarah nodded, and then left to get a male orderly to help put Robert in the transport van.
Matt watched her hips sway as she walked off and shook his head, “Dad, you sure know how to pick ‘em. Honestly…”
Expectations blurb: Expectations depicts the struggle between what we desire for ourselves and our familiar obligations. This is personified by Chris and Matt Taylor, identical twins who are trying to win their overbearing father’s approval and acquire their trust funds. Their best friend and roommate, Aiden O’Boyle, left his family behind in Ireland to pursue a career in dance.
Robert Taylor, Matt and Chris’s father has set certain conditions that must be met in order for them to receive their trust funds. Matt must work at a job he hates while struggling with alcoholism. Chris has to deny his own desires and deep love for Aiden, to get married to Matt’s girlfriend. All the while, their father continues to use extreme measures to ensure his sons’ compliance. Will they learn to lean on each other and discover their strength or succumb to their father’s will? Amazon Barnes and Noble
What Money Can’t Buy blurb: What Money Can’t Buy, the sequel to Expectations, finds the two couples, Chris and Aiden and Matt and Carley, eagerly anticipating parenthood. However, their personal struggles continue. Though Matt overcame his dependency on alcohol, new temptations present themselves. And with Carley on bed rest, these temptations put a greater strain on their relationship. Chris continues to deal with issues regarding his father. These issues increase with greater proximity. When tragedy strikes, the best and worst in everyone is revealed. Can they stick together, or will their reactions tear them apart? Amazon Barnes and Noble
QUESTION: In your opinion, what can money NOT buy?