COVER & EXCERPT REVEAL
FULL COUNT by Kimberly Readnour
Release Date: July 9, 2020
Cover Design: Daqri Bernardo / Covers by Combs
Genre: Sports Romance
Trope: Friends to lovers
Dating my bestie? Yeah, I can only wish…
Cessna University’s starting shortstop.
Friend-zoned since freshman year.
I have a knack for falling for unattainable guys.
Blame my trust issues.
They keep me safe.
But this is our final year.
My last chance to break the dreaded friend-zone chains before graduation.
There’s one slight problem.
Every time we get close, Garret pulls away.
There’s a secretive side to him I haven’t tapped.
And I need to know.
Is it his secret keeping us apart,
Or something bigger?
No matter what holds him back,
I intend to play my part.
I don’t care how full his count is, I want my shot.
And I don’t intend to stop until he’s mine.
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My body stiffens from the familiarity of that voice. And the reason I remain single. I close my eyes for a beat, cursing my luck. The last person I want seeing me without makeup and smelling like garlic is Garret Cartel.
I’ll deflect with humor. That way, he won’t be focused on my appearance. I suck in an encouraging breath and spin on my heels to meet my bestie. But the moment I take in the view, the snarky greeting dies on my lips.
“Aw, you have your hands full.” I motion to the little girl draped across his shoulder. She’s out like a light. Long, dark curls hide her face, but my bet’s on her being gorgeous. I place her around three or four years old. She could be a much younger sister, but I’m leaning toward a niece. I’d ask, but considering he has been my male bestie since freshman year, I feel kind of dumb for not knowing if he has siblings. As close as we are during school, I don’t know much about his personal life. Other than me griping about having to babysit my brothers, family discussions never come up in our conversations. He’s reserved when it comes to his life outside school.
“Yeah, she crashed about a half-hour ago.” He pats her back, and my heart doubles in size from the cuteness. “We were just visiting family. What are you doing here?”
I lift the bag of Chinese takeout. “Bringing Mom her supper.”
“Your mom works here?” His eyebrows pop in surprise, but he quickly regains control.
“Yeah. Mom doesn’t work too many weekends, but this is where she goes when I complain about babysitting.” I expect him to laugh, but his lips curl into a grimace. Then, he gives me a once-over, and it’s my turn to grimace. My elastic waisted knee-high shorts and ratty T-shirt aren’t going to turn any heads. Need I mention my messy hair and lack of makeup?
“You look good.”
“I’m a mess.” I bark out a laugh. “I look like I just rolled out of bed.”
Something flashes through his eyes I can’t quite distinguish. Dark, and feral maybe? I don’t know. I’m sure it’s my imagination. Garret is such a tease. He never thinks of me as anything other than a friend. Why would he? My appearance resembles a homeless person while he looks ripped straight from a comic book. With chiseled muscles and broad shoulders, his overall strong physique looks perfectly drawn. He’s a bundle of masculine hotness. His short dark hair and defined jawline are enough to make any girl swoon. And believe me, I’ve been swooning for the past three years.
“You’re perfect the way you are. You don’t need all that crap women wear. And I like your messy hair. It’s sexy.”
I roll my eyes. This isn’t the first time Garret’s told me how he likes my natural appearance. Admittedly, I’ve left the house without makeup quite a few times. But there’s a piece of me that melts every time he compliments me. And after hearing Dad’s criticism, I need this jolt of confidence. I just wish he’d act on it.
“I didn’t expect to see anyone besides old man Miller. He never cares how I look.”
“Oh really? Someone encroaching my girl?”
“Maybe.” The tease in my voice earns me a smile.
“Hmm, it looks like I’ll have to smack down an old man.” He holds my gaze, and I sink further into his light brown eyes. They’re mesmerizing—a combination of kind and sexy that cocoons me in nothing but warmth. The moment breaks when the little girl in his arms stirs and draws his attention.
“I need to get her back home before the parents worry.” He pats her back and raises those intriguing eyes to me. “It’s good running into you. Guess we’ll be seeing each other soon.”
“In a couple of weeks.”
He turns to the front desk. “I’ll see you around, Gladys.”
“See you next time. I’ll sign you out.”
He must come here often if he’s on a first-name basis with The Warden. And he did say the parents. I suppose she’s his sister then. Garret gives me a nod and one last smile before slipping out the exit. A sigh bubbles out of me as I watch his backside leave. Garret and I never see each other during the summer. Although, we do send fun fact texts every morning. Something I started after we became friends freshman year. He was closed off in the beginning. So, I thought sending tidbits of information would be a good way to get to know each other. The texts have expanded to include random facts about what we’re doing or certain events. Today’s text he sent made a reference to the coffee drink I love so much. The same one Dad condones. But Garret never cares how many I drink. He goes out of the way to make sure I stay supplied.
And considering we’re going to be seniors this year, we’ve had a lot of the same courses, which makes our friendship easy to maintain. But friendship is all it’s ever been between us.
“It looks like I have some competition.” The gruff voice pulls my attention away from Garret’s ass and straight to Mr. Miller.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kimberly Readnour lives in the Midwest with her husband, two children, and a very fluffy cat.
Having a true passion for romance and HEA’s, she took the leap from the young adult genre to romance and never looked back.
Unexpected Love, book two of the Unforeseen Destiny Series, is a #1 Amazon Kindle bestseller in the Medical Romance. Her series, the Bad Boys Redemption, has spent many weeks on the Amazon’s sports fiction bestseller’s list.
Kimberly worked as a Registered Nurse for fifteen years before hanging up her stethoscope. When she isn’t running her own business, you can find her tucked away writing.
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