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About the author:
Ginnie is a French-Canadian author who decided to follow her dreams and live a creative life. She’s been writing since she was fourteen years old and it’s not a surprise that she chose this path. Being an author also allowed her to travel full-time with her boyfriend. Both her childhood dreams came true and she is ready to do whatever it takes to keep writing and traveling. If you want to know more about her lifestyle and where she currently is, check out her travel blog: FarmBoy and CityGirl
What inspired you to write your book?
I loved the idea of friends who get a second chance at love. So often, we hesitate and miss opportunities. I wanted to write a book about people who did that, but who were destined to be together.
Here is a short sample from the book:
After the exhausting flight that had taken him from New York City to Portland, then the long drive from Portland to Bluebell Valley, Austin needed to unwind. He knew that William wouldn’t approve, but Austin planned on keeping that hidden from the cameras. They wouldn’t start shooting until tomorrow since everybody was a bit cranky today.
While everyone else was getting settled at the only hotel in town, Austin had snuck out of their guard to go explore his old stomping grounds. He hadn’t been here in years. It felt strange at first, to be back in this place he used to know. Some things had changed, like the new supermarket that was twice the size of the previous one. But other than that, everything was exactly as he’d left it.
He started walking on the main street, knowing exactly where he was going. He had made sure to change from his everyday suit to something more casual so nobody would spot him. It was hard to hide in a town so small, but he was hoping the local team baseball hat he was wearing would give him a free pass. He hid under it, looking at the ground as he walked past people he knew―or used to know.
It took him only a few minutes to arrive at his final destination: the liquor store. It was mostly empty, except for an old man looking at brandy bottles and a blonde woman looking at white wine. He recognized the old man as one of the farmers around his parents’ orchard, but it took him longer to recognize the blonde woman. She was too busy reading labels to even notice he was looking, so he kept his eyes on her as long as he wanted.
That was when he realized it was Sam. Samantha, the woman who now hated him, and his high school crush.
He couldn’t believe that she was even more beautiful now. In high school, she had cared for her appearance, but those days hadn’t been the most flattering for her. Now, with her hair in a ponytail and wearing a black outfit, she looked like a woman more than a girl.
When Austin looked at her eyes, he noticed that they seemed sadder than he remembered. There was a spark that had disappeared over the years. But even if he knew life had changed Sam, he couldn’t stop staring at her, mesmerized by the color of her eyes. They were his favorite color, he realized. Of all the greens he loved, his favorite shade had always been the one of Sam’s eyes: dark green with a streak of yellow in them. It couldn’t be a coincidence.
His brain told him to get away from here, from her. He shouldn’t have any contact with her—at least, not yet. But his heart had other plans.
Austin started walking toward her, unable to resist the urge that had taken over his whole body. He needed to know if Sam was still mad at him, if she would judge him for who he had become, if she were still the same old Sam he knew or if she had changed. He had so many questions. He couldn’t let her get out of his sight. If he didn’t ask her today, he might never get the chance.
He was next to her when he stopped, leaning against the red wine rack on the other side of the aisle.
“It’s been a long time,” he finally said, low enough that only she would hear it. He didn’t want to have the attention of everybody in the store. When Sam turned around to face him, Austin’s reflexes were faster than his brain and he caught the bottle she was about to drop.
He looked into her eyes. He was hoping she might have forgiven him already, but as he scanned her face, he realized that wasn’t the case. Sam didn’t seem very happy to see him. He couldn’t blame her.
“How have you been?” he asked, but she stayed silent.
“Au… Austin?” Sam finally asked. She seemed confused.
“Yes, it’s me.”
“What are you doing here?” she snapped. This wasn’t going how he wanted it to go. Even if he knew Sam hadn’t forgiven him, Austin had still hoped that she wouldn’t make a scene and be civilized about it. That was not where it was heading.
“I’m here to buy a bottle of wine. What about you?” he replied, hoping Sam would keep her voice down. Maybe this had been a bad idea.
“You know what I meant. Why are you in Bluebell?”
“This is my town too, Sam. I’m here for a documentary,” Austin replied, feeling like things were getting out of control. He didn’t want to fight with Sam, not so soon. Yes, they definitely had problems and they would have to sort them out, but not now, not here.
This had been a bad idea.
“We start shooting tomorrow. They want to see the orchard and where I grew up,” he added, hoping it would be a neutral topic.
He wanted Sam’s forgiveness, but she didn’t look ready to give it to him. She was still too hurt and he would have to work for it. But this seemed like a bad moment, as she probably had a lot of things to process. He had to do that too, as he could feel emotions being stirred inside of him. He hated fighting with Sam as much as he loved spending time with her. Seeing her again only made him more certain he wanted to make things right between them.
“How long are you going to be here?” she asked, her anger slowly fading. He couldn’t tell where that was coming from, but it was reassuring.
“Just this weekend. My plane leaves Sunday night.”
“Can I see you again tomorrow? There are a lot of things I need to say to you.”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea.”
“Please, Sam,” he said, but Sam was stoic.
Austin watched as she turned her back, wondering if they could even get over what had happened between them. Now that he was on the top of the world, he realized that his friendship with Sam should have been more important. Having someone like her in his life would make him much happier.
The more he looked at her, the more he noticed how different she was. Yes, she was still as stubborn as when she was a teenager—she’d just proven it to him. But there was something in her that wasn’t as bright as it used to be. She looked… sad, almost. The only thing Austin wanted to do was make her smile, but he knew he wasn’t close enough to her anymore.
He sighed. It was better if he left now. He was still holding the bottle Sam had almost dropped. It wasn’t exactly what he wanted tonight—he needed something stronger.
Sam was standing right next to where he had to put the bottle back. He reached, brushing against her arm. The contact made him shiver, even though Sam’s skin was burning hot. The spark reminded him of all those times during high school when he had brushed his best friend’s skin, wondering if they could ever be more than friends. He had never felt that way about a woman since then. He had never felt that spark.
Austin put the bottle down on the shelf, his eyes still on Sam. If only she knew how he really felt about her. But he hadn’t wanted to ruin their friendship, and now it was too late. She might even be seeing someone, for all he knew.
“I’ll see you around,” Austin sighed. Even if he wanted to give Sam more time, she probably needed more than a weekend. But by then, he would be gone.
Austin walked around to the whiskey section and grabbed an expensive bottle he knew would help with his mood. By the time he was ready to pay, Sam had disappeared. She was gone already and his heart felt empty. Even though everything in his body told him to stay away from her, that this was just more trouble waiting to happen, his heart couldn’t be tamed: it wanted Sam, and it always had.