Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance
Publisher: Jillian Stone
Date of Publication: June 19, 2015
Number of pages: 334
Word Count: 90,000
Cover Artist: Jillian Stone
Book Tagline: 10 sexual encounters. No strings attached.
Hotshot copywriter Gracie Taylor-Scott has a reputation—for her artfully edgy ads. A rising star at Darcy Wexler Dean, New York, the long hours are perfect cover for Gracie’s fear of intimacy issues.
Great job. Great pay. No life—including her on again off again sex life. Then one night, she is plunged into darkness with a handsome stranger.
Bradley Craig is the new head of DWD’s research division, and this ad man has secrets of his own. Much lauded in his field of consumer behavior, there’s a darker side to the attractive ad man—his erotic, list-maker side.
Gracie and Bradley are assigned to work on the biggest new business pitch Darcy Wexler Dean will be in all year, and the two tangle immediately, battling copy concepts and focus group findings along with their explosive attraction to each other.
Bradley has a proposition: they make a list. Ten erotic sexual encounters, no strings attached. What’s at stake? Two Super Bowl spots and two fragile hearts.
“Close the door, Gracie.”
I checked the hallway through the floor-to-ceiling glass by the exit. No one was about. Coworkers were in their offices, filling out time sheets, getting ready to call it a day.
I shut the door with a soft click.
“I believe there’s a light switch on the wall.” He used a huskier voice, more like the elevator Bradley.
I pressed the controls, and the conference room dimmed enough not to be seen by passersby, as long as we kept things quiet. Nose to the door, I stared at the smooth, matte-black surface.
“I know things got a little heated––” I stopped myself and cringed. Was I talking about last night or the testy words between us several minutes ago? And since when weren’t things heated between us? I sucked in a calming breath and exhaled silently.
It occurred to me, this attraction to Bradley might well be the hottest, most erotic experience of my life. I pivoted away from the door to face him.
“Sorry I can’t be more enthusiastic about creative testing, it’s just that I’ve been screwed by research in the past, and not in a good way.”
Bradley flopped down on the sofa and raked me over with his gaze. He patted the seat next to him. “You and I need to build some trust.”
I approached slowly. “Have you any idea how many focus groups I’ve sat through where smirking research geeks underlined every word or phrase that didn’t test high enough—some of them the best words and phrases I’ve ever written in my life?”
I dropped my bag on the floor for emphasis. “Just once, I’d like to believe research has my back.”
He clasped my wrist and tugged. “Since we’re going to be working closely together…” He pulled me lower.
I settled a knee to each side of his thighs and straddled him. It was about time I climbed on the man. “How close?”
“Intimate close.” He easily worked through the buttons of my pants.
“You’re staring at my belly button.”
“You have a piercing.” His gaze turned darker, hungrier—as if I were a mocha chocolate truffle and he had a craving for Godiva.
Character Name: Gracie Taylor-Scott
Birthdate: June 10, 1987
Birthplace: St Johns Hospital, Santa Monica, CA
Education: Pacific Palisades High, UCLA
Mother: Gwen Taylor, Blaxploitation Film Goddess
Father: Dr. James Scott, Surgeon
Siblings: 2 sisters (I deceased) 1 brother
Occupation: Advertising copywriter
Employer: Darcy Wexler Dean Advertising
Residence: 121 East Nineteenth Street, New York, NY 10003
Love Life: Sketchy––almost nonexistent.
Describe yourself what is your worst and best quality?
Worst: I need people more than I let on. Best: Once I make friends I usually keep them. So I guess that means I’m a good friend.
What is the one thing you wish other people knew about you? I’ve become somewhat reclusive since arriving in New York. I really need to get out there and make new friends.
What is your biggest secret something no one knows about?
Something very traumatic, but I can’t share my dark secret here, I don’t want to be a spoiler!
What are you most afraid of?
Intimacy in a relationship. Getting too close, getting hurt. I saw what my father’s infidelity did to my mother and I vowed to never let that happen to me.
What do you want more than anything?
Real Intimacy in a relationship. I know, crazy, right?
What is your relationship status?
Not so hot. In fact, my love life could be a whole lot hotter.
How would you describe your sense of fashion?
I’m okay on my own, but the art director I’m paired with at Darcy Wexler Dean is an amazing stylist. We do some serious sale shopping together.
How much of a rebel are you?
I can be stubborn and rebellious at times. I have a tendency to pick fights with research geeks at work. They tend to be all about the numbers and I’m all about the honesty and freshness of the message.
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
Oh gosh, so far I would have to say helping to raise my eight-year-old niece, Hannah. My older sister died in a hit and run auto accident, which is what brought me to New York City.
What is your idea of happiness?
Great friends. A wonderful lover. Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Gelato––eaten straight out of the container.
What is your current state of mind?
Restless, looking to settle down, build a life with a great guy if I could ever find one. Actually, I may have found one.
What is your most treasured possession?
My Parisian wrought iron sleigh bed––a flea market find. The bed plays an important role in THE DO IT LIST. In fact, it’s practically a supporting character!
What is your most marked characteristic?
Bradley Craig, the new head of research, says it’s my blush.
What is it that you most dislike?
People who make it difficult for you to live your life or do good work. Fear-based people who operate out of jealousy, ignorance or prejudice.
Which living person do you most despise?
An old boyfriend named Troy Lambert. I can’t say I despise my father, but he’s got a lot to make up for.
What is your greatest regret?
That I ever went on a date with Troy Lambert.
What qualities do you most like in a man?
His courage and steadfastness. I’m pretty adept at pushing men away when they get too close. Bradley Craig just might be the man who can weather the storm that is Gracie Taylor-Scott.
What qualities do you most like in a woman?
Strength, humor, trustworthiness––her ability to be a true friend.
Who is your favorite hero in fiction?
Atticus Finch. Because of his quiet steady morality and sense of justice. He’s also a great father. My mother is African American mixed race, and my father is white, a Scot with a brogue, no less! I guess that makes me sensitive to the issues related to race.
Which living person do you most admire?
Harper Lee, Toni Morrison
If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
II take risks at work with my creative, but never with my private life. I definitely need to change that.
What is your motto?
Lordy, lordy, lordy. Probably some old southern axiom from Grandma Nona like: “Cain’t never could.” Translation: You never will if you don’t try.
Jillian Stone was born a storyteller. A skill that got her into considerable trouble as a youth until she solved the problem by becoming an advertising creative. And the career did seem to suit her as she won many national ad awards including the Clio and the New York Art Director’s Club Gold. What more could she ask for? Create her own worlds? Become goddess of her own universe? Yes! So, she began to write fiction. Her Victorian Romantic Suspense novel AN AFFAIR WITH MR. KENNEDY won the 2010 Golden Heart and sold to Pocket Books. Her sexy, controversial steampunk novel THE SEDUCTION OF PHAETON BLACK won the 2010 Romance Through The Ages Erotica category and sold to Kensington Brava. Jillian lives in California and is currently writing a new spin-off novel to the Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series as well as book #2 in the DO IT LIST series.
Twitter: @gJillianStone https://twitter.com/gJillianStone