He certainly didn’t ask Santa for a bride. . .
Professional bull rider Chase Jarrett has the world on a string. The only blight in his idyllic existence is his nosy cousin’s nonstop nagging about his need for more publicity. Tired of listening to her suggestions, he gives her free rein when she hatches a plan to skyrocket his popularity. All he has to do is show up for a phony wedding in Las Vegas. Then Chase discovers the wedding was real, the surprise bride is beautiful, and his sponsors are demanding he remain married.
Shy and introverted, the last thing Jessie Pierce wants is to find herself in the spotlight. But thanks to a meddling so-called best friend, that’s exactly where she’s at. The promise of an all-expenses paid vacation to Las Vegas lures her on an adventure that ends with her unexpectedly married to a hunky bull rider who would draw her out of her shell if she’d let him.
A business proposal leaves the two of them committed to a year of marriage. How hard could it be to remain wed in name only?
Wrap yourself up in the joy of holidays and falling in love in this sweet, lighthearted romance from USA Today Bestselling author Shanna Hatfield.
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Now, as she observed him, she felt a tug at her heart that she’d never see him again. Oh, she’d see him ride at the rodeo, of course, but it wasn’t the same. Not when she stood almost toe-to-toe with him, lost in the bright light of his hazel eyes and the warmth of his smile.
He stared into her face for the length of several heartbeats before he spoke in a husky tone that made her toes tingle. “I had a nice time with you, too, Jessie. Thank you for agreeing to Ashley’s crazy plans and participating in the sham wedding. It was fun to spend the day with you. You’re a great girl and anyone would be lucky to have you as their real bride.”
Jessie blushed and would have backed away, but Chase’s callused palm glided along her cheek before he cupped the back of her neck, drawing her flush against him.
His mouth settled on hers in a soft, gentle kiss that lingered far longer than she anticipated. When she attempted to draw a breath, he deepened the kiss, wrapping both arms around her.
Feeling boneless as he captivated her with passionate kisses, Jessie forgot they were standing next to the curb in front of a posh hotel. She forgot about contests, fake weddings, and ridiculous publicity stunts. She forgot about being shy or shocked by his unexpected affection.
All she could think about was the man holding her close to his heart, one that pounded in time to her own. His woodsy, leather-tinged scent tantalized her senses as she melted against him, wishing she belonged with him — to him.