can't let go

"I love this novella."

LOVE IN THE BALANCE, BOOK 1.5 ・featuring Aiden & Sadie
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An Instant Spark

Sadie Howard would never admit there’s such a thing as love at first sight, but she can’t deny the connection between her and sexy Adonis Aiden Downey. She also can’t deny she loves to kiss him-his mouth might be his most precious asset. Despite every promise to herself not to get involved any deeper than a first date, she can’t keep from seeing more of Aiden . . . in more ways than one.

Aiden Downey had no idea the hot blonde from the club would trigger his protective, gentle nature, but the moment she drops her guard and he sees the real Sadie Howard, he’s a goner. When a family crisis puts the brakes on their budding romance, can Aiden find a way to hold on to her? Or will he lose the best thing in his life just as quickly as he found her?


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Fast Facts


  • Charlie Hunnam from Sons of Anarchy (Jax Teller) inspired Aiden’s looks. With his soulful eyes and sexy-as-sin body, and that face–he always appears internally tortured.
  • Fellow author Stephen King appeared in Sons of Anarchy – his cameo consisted of him riding in on a bright red Harley-Davidson Road-Glide and disposing of a little (ahem) “problem” Tig and Gemma needed help with.
  • I also gave Aiden the same motorcyle as Jax: a modified Harley Davidson Dyna-Glide (Super Glide Sport), though Jax’s bike is black and Aiden’s what I call “sparking orange”.
  • I had fun writing Aiden with long hair. Like Sadie, this is how I prefer him.
  • In Hard to Handle, Aiden’s haircut is inspired by a real-life event. A guy I had a crush on once chopped his long locks and I literally gasped when I saw him. 
  • I cried while writing Kathy and Mike Downey sitting down to talk to their children about Kathy’s decision regarding the cancer. I cried while editing it, too. 
  • As much as I didn’t want to give Harmony her own scene, I admit that she was really fun to write.  😈
  • I don’t feel like I’d know Aiden or Sadie if it hadn’t been for writing this novella. Can’t Let Go was a huge part of uncovering these characters’ pasts, and I have my editor to thank for it. If Lauren hadn’t suggested a prequel novella, that tree house scene never would have happened. I shudder!!!
  • THE TREE HOUSE. *le sigh*
  • Like Sadie, I can appreciate motorcycles but I’m terrified to get on one.


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Dear Reader,

When my editor suggested a prequel novella to slide between books one and two of the Love in the Balance series, my muse sat up and begged! I love Aiden in a pure, honest way, and since he and Sadie were so intwined in Tempting the Billionaire…


(their get-together-through-breakup was chronicled in that book)


…I wanted to dive in and write just what happened between those two. How did Aiden go from head-over-heels to on the outs? How did Sadie go from unsure about him to almost in love to borderline hate? WHAT HAPPENED?

I sat down to write the novella, and then discovered I’d blocked myself in left and right. The timeline, you guys. *le horror* I made a calendar of every scene in Tempting and had to make sure that Aiden wasn’t with Sadie in Can’t Let Go at the same time he was hanging out with Shane having a beer in Tempting the Billionaire. 

In hindsight, Can’t Let Go is less a prequel and more a series of “deleted scenes” from book one. 

Somehow, I was able to construct the plot and the arrival of Aiden’s horrible family news about his mom, and weave in enough heartbreak to make you reach for the tissues. Bonus, though, it’s the first time you lay eyes on Evan and Landon, Aiden’s brothers, AND you get to hate-love his ex-wife, Harmony.

Come to think of it, I packed a lot into this book… and better yet, you don’t have to wait to pick up Hard to Handle and resolve the devastating cliffhanger at the end. It’s worth it though. Like putting in a movie you know will make you cry…

If you missed this series, I recommend reading in order: starting with Tempting the Billionaire, moving to Can’t Let Go and Hard to Handle, and then finishing up with The Millionaire Affair. And by then you’ll have met Gloria and got to hang out with Evan and Lyon, and oh friends, that’ll bring you into Evergreen Cove and Second Chance series.

I never dreamed this world would spiral the way it has, but I’m thrilled that I had the chance to build and grow right along with these characters.

Happy reading!



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