The Journey of Bad Boy Evan Downey

My friends, Evan Downey's book is DONE. 

I completed proofs (the final step before the book goes to print) today. So, it is official. Evan Downey is complete.

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Which, I'll be honest, makes me feel like this:

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There's a certain relief-slash-sadness-slash-joy to finishing a book to completion. Evan Downey was dreamed up back when I wrote him into the prequel Can't Let Go and its follow-up, Hard to Handle. Here are a few excerpts:

book coverEvan was leaning on the fireplace, flicking a lighter repeatedly. He put it on the mantle and narrowed his eyes at Aiden. “Dude.”

“Not now, Ev.” Aiden accepted the glass from Landon, who gave him a knowing smirk.

“I’m glad she’s gone,” Landon said of Harmony.

“Good riddance,” Evan muttered in agreement.

Aiden drank from his glass, refusing to confirm his brothers’ suspicions.

Landon poured a third glass and handed it to Evan before topping Aiden’s off. “You know you have to talk Mom into getting treatment, right?”

He liked to do that. Give a command disguised as a question.

“Yeah,” Evan piped up. “She’ll listen to you after we go back home.”

Aiden studied them both. “When are you guys leaving?”

Landon’s mouth flattened. “I’m going to fly out at five in the morning. I have a day full of meetings.”

“I’m staying the weekend. Norm’s running the shop,” Evan said of his tattoo parlor.

Aiden chuffed, draining his scotch in one big, burning mouthful. He addressed Landon. “You’re just going to return to work?” he rasped, the liquor shredding his already dry throat.

“Aren’t you?” Landon studied Aiden. A little too closely. “You know you haven’t mentioned the hotel you used to talk about nonstop.”

“Yeah,” Evan said, dragging out the word. “The casino-hotel thingy on the river you and Danny are doing. Isn’t that supposed to be opening this summer?”

Aiden refilled his glass despite everything in the room having blurry edges. “Fell through,” he grumbled. Along with his marriage, his friendship, his—

“What’s going on, Aiden?” Landon’s voice dropped to a soft, less-demanding tone.

That was probably why Aiden didn’t bark at his older brother’s intrusion. “You can’t tell Mom. Or Dad.”

Evan came closer. “What’s going on?”

... ... ...

HardtoHandleAiden walked into the den. Evan sat on the couch looking none too glad to see him. Of course, Evan never looked happy to see him.

“Hey, brother,” Aiden said.

“My son said you were kissing a girl in the park.”

And this chafed Evan for some reason?

“Sadie somebody, Dad says.”

Aiden shot his father a look. Mike shrugged. “Didn’t know it was a state secret.”

“K-I-S-S-I-N—”

“And Lyon says you make out with the neighbor.” Aiden interrupted Evan’s chants. “So why don’t you lay off?”

Dad rolled his eyes. “You two sound like a couple of idgits.”

“Evan started it.”

... .... ...

Then we got to hang out with him for longer in The Millionaire Affair:

TheMillionaireAffair“I’ll cover her expenses,” Landon told Evan over the phone moments after hanging up with Kimber. Or, more accurately, moments after she’d hung up on him. He was still obsessing over that fact. He didn’t like being hung up on. It was rude. But he was trying not to overreact, and it wasn’t as if he’d had a list of available options for this situation.

“Fine by me, brother,” Evan said over the din of voices in the background. “Have you seen her recently? Because I ran into her after the funeral.”

“The last time I saw her was when she lived at our house that one summer.”

Evan let out a sharp laugh. “When she was in the tenth grade? Dude. You should see her now. I mean, not my type,” he added. “Redhead. But still hot.”

She sounded hot, came the out-of-left-field thought. Her voice had been a smoky, mid-range tone as opposed to Lissa’s childlike soprano. Kimber had a sultry laugh, too, even though he could tell it was borne of nervousness. He supposed that was understandable. How odd to go and live with someone she’d never met. Clearly, he hadn’t put her at ease. He was unable to pull off the charm both Evan and Aiden had when it came to the opposite sex. For some reason.

For some reason? You know why. Because he wouldn’t allow himself to, that’s why. Charm led to emotions, which led to attachment, which led to…disaster.

“It doesn’t matter how ‘hot’ she is,” Landon stated more harshly than he’d intended. “I hired her to take care of Lyon.”

“Sure. Whatever you say, Master of Your Domain. Look, I have to get back to my immersion class,” Evan said.

“What’s up next? Trust falls?” It was a jab. And Evan knew it.

“Not funny,” Evan said, followed by a creative curse word.

Ah, being the oldest had its perks. Landon had gotten every one of his siblings with that trick. He’d held out his arms, promised to catch them, then step back and let them hit the dirt. He chuckled.

“None of us will take care of you when you’re old,” Evan growled.

“I am old.” Thirty-seven and single. He’d crafted a plan to avoid this situation. Lissa had dismantled it.

“I gotta go,” Evan said abruptly. “Good luck reining it in when you see her, dude.” He let out a low whistle. “Gooooood luck.”

So finally, FINALLY! I was able to dig in with the man I've been chasing through three books.

And now we are SO so close! January 27, 2015 and Evan (and this beautiful cover) will be in your hands. 

BringingHometheBadBoy

Preorder information is available here (except for Amazon because they are still refusing to put up preorders) :(

Barnes & Noble | Google Play | iBooks | & MORE

On a scale of one-to-GIMME GIMME!!!, how excited are you?

~Jess :)