Thursday, January 4, 2018

Breaking The Ice

With: Julie Cross


Haley Stevenson seems like she’s got it all together: cheer captain, “Princess” of Juniper Falls, and voted Most Likely to Get Things Done. But below the surface, she’s struggling with a less-than-stellar GPA and still reeling from the loss of her first love. Repeating her Civics class during summer school is her chance to Get Things Done, not angst over boys. In fact, she’s sworn them off completely until college.

Fletcher Scott is happy to keep a low profile around Juniper Falls. He’s always been the invisible guy, warming the bench on the hockey team and moonlighting at a job that would make his grandma blush. Suddenly, though, he’s finding he wants more: more time on the ice, and more time with his infuriatingly perfect summer-school study partner. 

But leave it to a girl who requires perfection to shake up a boy who’s ready to break all the rules.

Add Breaking the Ice to your Goodreads’ TBR:

“Good morning, sunshine.” Haley flashes me a devious grin. “What a night, huh? Four hundred and eighty-two dollars. Is that what you usually pull for those…odd jobs?”
Oh God, this is bad. Really bad. Like moving to Duluth to live with Mom bad. My stomach twists, and I stumble out of bed, heading straight for the bathroom. I don’t even get the door all the way shut before I’m leaning over the toilet, puking up way too many shots of rum. Never again. Never again.
I wait for the heaving to stop before flushing the toilet and leaning over the sink to rinse my mouth. Still a bit unsettled, I sit down on the bathroom floor and lean against the tub. I almost forget Haley’s presence in my house until the door creaks all the way open and she’s standing in front of me, holding a glass of water.
She hands it to me, surprisingly lacking the judgmental look I’d been expecting.
“Thanks,” I croak out after taking a long drink. “Sorry. About sleeping through our study session or project session or whatever…”
Haley squats down and assesses me. “Your eyes are really red. You’re not a drug addict, are you?”
“Shit. My contacts.” That would explain the glued-together feeling my eyes had this morning. And the fact that they’re burning right now. I pull myself to my feet and fumble around in the medicine cabinet for my solution. Relief hits the instant my eyes are free of those things. But the world blurs in front of me. Haley walks out of the bathroom then pops back in, holding my glasses.
“I didn’t know you wore contacts,” she says.
“Just to play hockey.”
“And for work, right?”
The grin I saw right when I woke up returns to her face. This little screwup on my part is going to cost me. Big time. I put my glasses on and spin to face Haley. “I went out with my older brother last night after work. He likes to mess with me.”
She smooths out the grin and offers a nod. “Okay, so your older brother likes to mess with you by covering your body in lipstick, stuffing thongs into your pockets, and dropping…oh, like, four hundred dollars into your pants. That makes perfect sense. I don’t have a brother, but if I did, I’m sure that’s what he’d do to me.”
Well, it is partly true. I hung out with Braden after work, but we were still at work and there were lots of others around, too—mostly female others. And Paco. And Danny…I think Rowdy, too.
“I’ll tell you what, Fletch,” Haley says, reaching around me and turning the knobs on the shower. “I’ll give you two choices…one, you can tell me the truth about that little job of yours and I’ll leave you alone with your hangover. Or two, you can clean yourself up and get your head together and do some work with me, and I’ll forget about the panties and the money and the lipstick…”
I doubt she’ll forget anything, but I have to hold out hope at least. I glance warily at her. “Option two. Definitely two.”
 The smirk on Haley’s face is gonna be forever etched into my memory. She knew I’d pick option two. She points to the shower and gives me a little wave. “I’ll be in the living room hanging out with Vixen.”

About Julie Cross:
Julie lives in Central Illinois with her husband and three children. She's a former gymnast, longtime gymnastics fan, coach, and former Gymnastics Program Director with the YMCA. She's a lover of books, devouring several novels a week, especially in the young adult and new adult genres. Outside of her reading and writing credibility's, Julie Cross is a committed--but not talented--long distance runner, creator of imaginary beach vacations, Midwest bipolar weather survivor, expired CPR certification card holder, as well as a ponytail and gym shoe addict. You can find her online via twitter, her personal website, email, Facebook, Goodreads, or co-moderating the YAwriters section of Reddit.

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