New Romance Novel by Laura Branchflower

New Romance Novels 2018! I’m currently working on three. Here is a sneak peek at the first…

Main characters:

Hero: Lucas Roe — NFL QB, 30 years old

Heroine: Carrie Chambers — HR Assistant Director at Washington, DC hotel, 24 years old

Chapter One

Carrie ran her hand down the length of her thigh, a coconut scent filling the air as she applied suntan lotion for the third time since arriving at the beach two hours earlier. She wasn’t going to chance burning in the strong Florida sun.

A shadow spread over her. A man had paused a few feet from her lounge chair, his large hands splayed on his hips as he stared out at the ocean. Carrie’s eyes rested momentarily on one of his hands, taking in his long fingers and wide palm before traveling up his well-toned arm to his muscled shoulder. He had obviously just arrived. It was her third day at the resort and he wasn’t someone you could overlook. He was at least six-foot-four with broad shoulders and an athletic body. The muscles in his upper back rippled as he adjusted his hands on his hips. His skin looked impossibly smooth. She took in a deep breath. It was the first time since it ended with Kevin that she took note of another man. Kevin. She wasn’t supposed to think about Kevin.

The high-pitched sound of female laughter accompanied two women in string bikinis walking up from the water, their attention focused on the man beside Carrie. She watched them blatantly stare at him, amazed at how obvious they were in their interest.

One of the women pulled back her shoulders, jutting her large breasts out as they came within feet of him. Carrie rolled her eyes. Behavior like the woman’s was why good-looking men had huge egos. She was basically offering herself to him.

He didn’t take the bait, continuing to stare forward as they passed within inches of him. When he didn’t turn to get a glimpse of the women from behind, Carrie’s curiosity about the stranger increased. There was no way Kevin would have resisted a look at their asses. She mentally chastised herself for again thinking of Kevin.

A cabana boy stopped beside the man, pointing off to their left as he told him where the rest of his party was located. “Thank you.” His deep voice fit him. “Would you mind putting this on my chair?” He held out his room key and sunglasses. “I want to take a swim.”

As soon as the cabana boy left, Carrie assumed the man would walk towards the water. Instead he began to prepare his body for his impending swim, tilting his head from one side to the other as he stretched out his neck and then shaking out his arms. She quietly lifted her cellphone from the table beside her chair, pulling up the camera before pointing it in his direction and resting it on her stomach. Words wouldn’t do him justice. She had to show Jodie what she was missing.

It was apparent from his profile with his etched jaw and straight nose that he was handsome, but she wasn’t prepared for how handsome until he turned his head. Her heart skipped when his eyes met hers, a bolt of awareness coursing through her.

“Sorry. I didn’t mean to block your view,” he said.

“No, it’s fine.” Her voice sounded breathless.

His gaze fell to her cell phone. Before she could react he had closed the distance between them and snatched it from her hands.

“Wha—what are you doing? That’s my phone,” she stammered, coming to her feet. “You can’t just take that.”

“I’m taking back what’s mine,” he said shortly. He was looking down at her phone as he spoke his thumb tapping the display.

“How would you like me to take a video of you without your permission?”

“I wasn’t…” she trailed off, her face heating.

“You weren’t what?” He lifted his gaze. “Taking a video of me?” He raised his eyebrows.

Her mouth went dry as she met his cool gaze. Even in a bathing suit, he was the most intimidating person she’d ever encountered. She dropped her eyes, completely mortified. He had caught her recording him. “I’m sorry. I—“

“Save it.” He tossed her phone onto her lounge chair.

“I—“

“You were caught,” he interrupted, his lips turned down. “The only thing you’re sorry about is that you no longer have the video to show your friends or whatever the hell you planned to do with it.”

She opened her mouth, but couldn’t find words. His arrogance was shocking.

“Don’t you think I deserve a private life? Next time you want a video of someone, ask for permission.”

Carrie was still processing the most embarrassing moments of her life when Jodie dropped down beside her half an hour later. “What have I missed?”

“Nothing,” she lied, not prepared to verbalize her humiliation.

“Do you want to get in the water?”

“No!” Carrie burst out. “I mean. I don’t feel like it.” There was no way she was going to chance bumping into him.

“Okay.” Jodie pulled her hair up into a messy bun as she looked around. “Have you seen any football players? Someone on the elevator said a group of them checked in last night. They took part in some charity event yesterday.”

Carrie’s gaze shifted to the ocean, her heart rate accelerating as the man from earlier emerged from the surf. “Do you think he’s one?”

“Oh my God!” Jodie gripped Carrie’s arm. “That’s Lucas Roe!”

“No it’s not!” Carrie gasped, but even as the words left her lips she knew it was true. Lucas Roe was one of the most celebrated quarterbacks in the NFL. Not only was he also featured in half a dozen commercials, he also played for the Washington Kings, her hometown team. “I’m such an idiot.” She dropped her head back against the lounger.

“He’s coming right towards us,” Jodie whispered.

Carrie picked up her novel, opened it to a random page and held it in front of her face. She couldn’t bear to face him again.

“Mr. Roe?” The excited voice of a young boy had Carrie peaking over the top of her book. “My dad asked me to ask you for your autograph.” The boy glanced back at his father who was several yards away.

“We really admire you,” the man said. “You’re a pleasure to watch. Our favorite by far.”

“Thank you,” Lucas said in a tone much friendlier than the one he’d used on her earlier. He took the pen and paper the boy held out, asking him for his name, before signing his autograph.

“Thank you, Mr. Roe,” the boy gushed before running off with the paper clutched in his hand.

“You’re our favorite, too,” Jodie called out causing Carrie’s stomach to clench. “We’re huge fans. May I have your autograph too? You could sign my stomach or…wherever,” she teased in a husky voice that only came out for men.

Carrie laid the open book over her face. She prayed he would ignore Jodie like he’d ignored the two string bikinis earlier. When she felt a shadow descend over her body, she knew he was within feet of them.

“You have better manners than your friend,” he said.

“Better manners than my friend?” Jodie’s eyes narrowed in confusion.

He nodded towards Carrie. “She tried to take a video of me earlier.”

“What?” Jodie laughed aloud. Her gaze swung to Carrie. “You took a video of him?”

“I didn’t know who he was,” Carrie mumbled from beneath her book.

“Then why were you taking a video?” he asked.

Carrie felt a new wave of heat flood her cheeks. She needed a drink. “It was an accident,” she lied.

“Right,” he said dryly. “Because cellphones hold themselves up and start videotaping.”

“Why did you take a video of him?” Jodie asked. “She seriously didn’t recognize you,” she told Lucas. “I had to tell her who you were.”

Carrie closed her eyes beneath the book. She was going to kill Jodie. “Do you mind leaving, Mr. Roe? You’re blocking my sun.”

“Is your cellphone full of videos of random men?” he asked.

“No!” Carrie abruptly sat up, letting the book fall to her lap as she glared up at him, no longer concerned with what he thought of her. “You were standing right in front of me stretching and you have a nice body, so I was going to send it to her.” She nodded towards Jodie. “To show her what she was missing—that’s it. If I had known you were such a cocky asshole, I never would have done it.”

Instead of barking something back at her, like she expected, he observed her in silence for several seconds, the corners of his lips twisting in an obvious attempt to keep from smiling. “Someone has a temper.”

“Fuck you.” Carrie plopped back on her lounger and picked up her book. “I hate athletes.”

“Her ex is a professional hockey player,” Jodie supplied.

“Jodie!” Carrie hissed, frowning at her. “Stop talking about me like I’m not here.”

“What did he do?” Lucas asked as if she hadn’t spoken.

“Serial cheater,” Jodie answered.

“He wasn’t a serial…” Carrie trailed off. Why was she defending Kevin? And why was she discussing this at all. She closed the book, picked up her cellphone and came to her feet. “How about respecting my privacy,” she bit out not quite meeting Lucas’s eyes. He may have been an asshole, but that didn’t stop her from feeling attracted to him.

“Carrie don’t leave,” Jodie began, “I—“

“I’ll see you later,” Carrie interrupted before slipping past Lucas.

She made it less than five yards before a warm hand clasped her upper arm. “Don’t leave on my account.”

“I’m not.” She continued to stare forward, her entire arm tingling from his touch.

“I’m sorry for earlier. I thought you knew who I was.”

“It’s fine. You were right. I shouldn’t have taken the video. If you don’t mind…” She pulled her arm from his grasp.

He stepped in front of her, blocking her path. “Have lunch with me.”

She looked at him then, which was a mistake. As soon as their eyes met, she felt an undeniable connection.

“Come on.” He smiled, revealing his perfect white teeth. “I’m not an asshole. I promise.”

“You were a complete asshole to me half an hour ago. Remember?” She raised her eyebrows.

“That’s just the persona I take on when someone’s invading my privacy. It wasn’t real.”

Her heart did a funny flutter when he smiled again. “I don’t do athletes,” she said summoning up her last strands of resolve.

“I’m only asking to buy you lunch.” The desire flashing in his eyes promised much more than a meal. “I probably wouldn’t let you do me so soon after meeting anyway.”

The innuendo behind his words had her pulse jumping. She needed distance. There was no way she was going to be able to resist this man. “You remind me of someone I want to forget. Excuse me.”

“How could you say no to lunch with Lucas Roe?” Jodie asked when she entered their suite an hour later to find Carrie stretched on top of one of two beds. “He’s Lucas Roe, Carrie. He’s probably worth fifty million dollars.”

“And he’s a professional athlete who didn’t show me the slightest interest until I told him he was an asshole. I’m just a conquest to him. He isn’t used to women that don’t fall at his feet.”

“So what? It was just lunch. Don’t you want to be able to tell people you shared a meal with Lucas Roe? Lucas Roe, Carrie. Lucas Roe asked you out.”

“Why do you keep saying his name?” Carrie asked.

“Because,” Jodie began stretching out on the bed beside her, “I don’t think you realize how big this is.”

“Are you forgetting why we came here?” Carrie asked.

“No, of course not. But he’s—“

“Lucas Roe,” Carrie finished. “Another self-absorbed athlete.” Her heart ached at the thought of Kevin. “Considering I was supposed to be marrying one this weekend, do you really think it’s a good idea for me to go out with another one?”

“You can’t just group them together because they’re athletes,” Jodie said. “I just spent almost a half hour talking to him. He was remarkably normal.”

“Then why don’t you go out with him?” She tossed her forearm over her eyes.

“Because he didn’t ask me. He’s interested in you.”

“Please stop. He reminded me of Kevin.” She didn’t want to think about Kevin. The whole reason they’d taken a last minute vacation was to distract her from thinking about Kevin.

“He was nothing like Kevin. He’s taller and leaner. Kevin’s more stocky and—”

“Not physically,” Carrie interrupted. “There was something about his eyes. I felt like he could pull me in—just like Kevin did.”

“You’re overthinking this,” Jodie insisted. “It was just lunch.”

“I’d sleep with him,” Carrie said. “I know I would.” She’d been fantasizing about it for the past hour.

“That’s not a bad thing.” Jodie propped herself up on her elbow and stared down at her. “You’re twenty-four and you’ve only slept with one guy. For all you know Kevin was terrible in bed.”

“He wasn’t terrible.” If he’d been terrible, she wouldn’t be craving the physical intimacy they’d shared. “And stop saying things to make me think about him. You’re being a terrible friend right now.”

“No, I’m telling you things you need to hear. You gave him six years of your life. Don’t give him another minute.”

“It’s only been four months,” Carrie said. Four months since he’d broken her heart. She cursed softly when a tear slipped from the corner of her eye. “God, I can’t believe I can still produce tears for him.” She brushed her knuckles over her cheek. Until that moment, she’d gone two weeks without crying, the longest period since he’d left her.

When they returned to the beach in the late afternoon to enjoy cocktails while the sun went down, there was no sign of Lucas Roe. There was also no sign of him in the resort’s open-air restaurant where they had a late dinner, or at the only on-property night club where they danced until well after midnight. Carrie outwardly showed no reaction to his absence, never mentioning him to Jodie or commenting when Jodie mused about where he might be, but inside she felt the stab of disappointment. She was attracted to him and his attention had been a welcome stroke to her battered ego.

“Lucas left the resort last night,” Jodie told Carrie the following afternoon. She had just returned from the beachside bar, a Mai Tai in each hand. “Apparently the word got out that he was here and everyone started clamoring for pictures and autographs. He checked out before dinner.”

He was gone. Carrie’s internal debate over whether or not to let him take her out was now a moot point. She would probably regret not going for the rest of her life. “I guess that’s the price of fame.”

“He rented a villa on Key Biscayne. We’re going there tonight.”

“What?” Carrie pushed herself up on her elbows. “What do you mean we’re going there?”

Jodie took a sip of her Mai Tai before continuing. “Justin Stagers and Buddy Thomas are at the bar,” she said naming two all pro offensive linemen. “They just invited me to his villa. Told me to bring my friend.”

“I can’t just show up there,” Carrie said. “He’s going to think I’m interested in him.”

“You are interested in him. You’ve been checking out every person that’s come to the beach today, hoping they’re him.”

“I have not!” Carrie said indignantly.

Jodie laughed. “You’ve turned around so many times; your neck is probably going to be sore tomorrow.”

“You’re unbelievable.”

“What’s unbelievable is that you don’t see how ridiculously transparent you are. You may be able to lie to yourself, but you’re not lying to me.”

“You’re so annoying,” Carrie grumbled.

“I’m your best friend. I have to be annoying sometimes. But seriously, thinking about Lucas Roe is a good thing. Much better than thinking about—“

“Don’t say his name,” Carrie interrupted. Jodie was right. She’d been so distracted by thoughts of Lucas Roe, she’d barely thought of Kevin all day.

“Sorry.”

“He probably has a girlfriend?”

“You should know. Does he?”

“How would I know?” Carrie frowned. “I barely spoke to him. You’re the one who talked to him for half an hour.”

“But you were the one cyberstalking him this morning,” Jodie said smugly.

Carrie had spent a half hour on her computer that morning learning everything she could about Lucas Roe. She’d thought Jodie was asleep, but clearly she’d been wrong. “He dated Leanne Reiner for two years,” Carrie admitted referring to a country singer. “He’s also dated a couple of super models. Surprise. Surprise.”

“So he’s not with anyone now?”

“It didn’t say, but he could be.” Kevin dated Natasha for months before it made the news. Carrie swallowed down the bitterness in her throat at the thought of Kevin and his Russian model.

“Don’t,” Jodie began rubbing Carrie’s arm. “Don’t let your thoughts go there.”

Carrie took a long sip from her straw and then another, pushing the images from her mind. “I hate him.” As she uttered the words, she knew they weren’t true. She could never hate Kevin. She’d loved him for too long.

“You’re coming out with me tonight. It doesn’t have to be anything more than a distraction. You don’t need to think past tonight. Just like the psychologist told you—take it one day at a time.”

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1,253 comments on “New Romance Novel by Laura Branchflower
  1. Sonya says:

    Another one that I would not be able to put down! Can’t wait to find out what happens!

  2. Bianca says:

    When will this come out? Can’t wait! Excited for this

  3. Vivien Franks says:

    Interesting! Waiting patiently for date of release.

    • Laura says:

      Thank you! This book took a bit more research than I expected — trying to understand the schedule/lifestyle of a professional athlete.

  4. Terry says:

    Wow! Excited to read this. Do you have a release date already ?

    • Laura says:

      Thank you! Unfortunately and fortunately, I’ve had to push my release date to the summer. It was supposed to be this month, but I woke up one morning with a story for Nick Prossi (Tony’s brother) in my head. When that happened, I switched gears a bit. I’ll finish Nick’s story and then go back to the QB. When that’s done, I’ll finish my sequel to A White Picket Fence, which I’ve also started. My plan is to have all three complete in 2018!

  5. Tracie Howard says:

    Excited about all three. Can’t wait to encounter more of Phil and Lina’s story and have answers to unanswered questions!

  6. Ann says:

    I have read all 3 of your books and just loved them. Can’t wait for your new ones to be released. So happy to find out that White Picket Fence gets a sequel!!! Yey.

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much for the feedback! I’m really looking forward to writing the sequel to White Picket Fence. I’ve actually already written the first chapter!

  7. Liza says:

    When do you think you might have a new book I’m starving for one of your stories 😳Elizabeth

    • Laura says:

      Thank you Liza!
      I am working on three books at the same time. I didn’t plan to write them this way, but sometimes this is the way it happens for me. I hope to have two out by the end of the summer and then the third closer to the end of the year. Thanks for reaching out!

  8. Janet says:

    Where have you been all my life?! I read A Sense of Belonging by chance and one clicked purchased your other 2 books a day after. Your writing is insane! I have read all 3 in 3 days and let me tell you that usually never happens with teenagers in my house. I am so excited to hear you are writing a sequel to White Picket Fence!!! Will we get Phil’s POV? Pretty please??!! As much as I loved Tony and Joseph, I couldn’t get Phil out of my head because of the level of his betrayal to Lina. I could understand the cheating and Lina’s forgiveness but I just couldn’t reconcile that Phil took the mistress to their vacation home knowing it was Lina’s favorite place. Lord, the birthday “present” incident made my heart pound. Also, why oh why did he initiate all the rendezvous even 2 in the same day and why interact with her on Saturdays by doing things outside the bedroom? Throughout the book I keep asking myself if he was obsessed with Kim and found myself rereading certain parts and dissecting them to calm my heart! I just REALLY need to understand him so I can believe that he truly loves and wants only Lina and why he made these choices. I want to forgive him too !! Thank you so much Laura for your unforgettable books.

  9. Tracie says:

    Ditto Janet! I would love the answers to those questions, and more about his son. When Phil is talking to Logan about his birth and how they bonded, where was Phil when Kim gave birth? Hope Lina lets Phil know that his relationship with Kim has to be transparent to her. Will Lina and Logan openly accept Phil’s son? I hope Phil has the same disdain for Kim and her actions as he had for Lina the day he left. I know you want disappoint Laura. You are an awesome writer and your books are amazing and memorable!!!!! Thank you

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Tracie!
      Good point — where was Phil during Liam’s (I’ve named him) birth? He wasn’t there. I need to make sure I mention that in the sequel. Phil doesn’t like Kim — he blames her (justifiably or not) for almost destroying his marriage. I’m not too far in the sequel but both Lina and Logan are having trouble accepting Logan. As Janet requested in another comment — the sequel will have Phil’s POV. This Hunter family has a lot of issues to work through. Thanks for your kind words! Laura

  10. Janet says:

    OMG, I haven’t been this excited about a sequel since discovering Nora Roberts close to 40 yrs ago and more recently 50 Shades of Grey! I am so relieved to hear Phil hates (my word) Kim and he wasn’t present for Liam’s birth. Tracie, I also read a comment Laura made to a goodreads review that Phil will sell/ sold the vacation condo. Ok, I will have to stop stalking this blog and let the author get back to her work but I hope we can believe it was Kim the evil witch who pursued Phil relentlessly and instigated/coerced him into doing things we read about. I The villain in this book is one of the best I’ve ever read even though we were only introduced to her once.

    • Laura says:

      LOL Thank you! That’s high praise! I really enjoy reading the comments because it sparks ideas in my mind. I know as the author how much Phil loves Lina but he clearly hasn’t done enough to redeem himself yet. And I have a feeling Kim is going to be a HUGE thorn in their side.

  11. Tracie says:

    Laura, I’m so glad you gave the baby a name. Phil and Lina continually say “my son or his son”. I see that causing a problem if Liam doesn’t become a team effort. Janet I’m sure Laura is going to give us one heck of a back story between Phil and Kim. Our villain won’t like Lina taking Phil back, it is going to be awesome. So don’t quit stalking the blog,I’m not!! We could miss something….LOL

  12. Barrett says:

    Oh wow! So happy to hear we will get Phil’s POV. I’m dying to find out what was going on in Phil’s head as he was with the OW. I agree with Tracie and Janet -you are a gifted storyteller. I became an instant fan with this book which I couldn’t put down. IMHO, saying “I’m sorry” repeatedly isn’t an answer and also saying he regrets his mistake because he was weak didn’t give me an insight as to why the affair lasted four months. It felt too long and hit hard to the reader because he loves Lina and they are soulmates. Janet, I agree with you regarding the villain. She was so scary and truly hateful ! Can’t wait to see more of her. LOL. Like Tracie I don’t want to miss any updates Laura has to give us now tha the sequel
    Is in the works. Thank you!!

    • Laura says:

      Thank you! The affair was a major betrayal — no question. I don’t think Lina would have had the strength to leave him (even temporarily) if he hadn’t crossed so many lines. You’re right — I’m sorry isn’t good enough. I will definitely answer your questions in the sequel.

  13. Tracie says:

    I knew Kim was going to come back strong. I really hope Lina has shored herself up and will fight back. Laura might as well dress Lina in a striped shirt(referee) and hang a whistle around her neck.She will be the hub where Liam is concerned. Once she opens her heart to him everyone else will follow. Logan probably feels accepting Liam is a betrayal to Lina. I also think Phil’s mom (Susan) might feel the same way. Phil will squirm thinking every time Lina sees Liam it will remind her of his betrayal. I hope Phil fights for Lina, the way Tony fought for Casey!!!! Can’t wait…..

  14. Ann says:

    Laura, can you give us fans an idea which one of these 3 books you are working on will be out and in what order? Again, I just love your writing. Can’t wait to read about Phil and Lina again.

    • Laura says:

      Hi Ann,

      I think the Nick Prossi book will be finished first. I’m currently wrestling with the idea of releasing the sequel to A White Picket Fence as I write it — just putting the individual chapters up on the blog each week or two. My only fear in doing it that way is if I have a major rewrite — I’ll decide in the next couple of weeks. It’s a heavier book to write than the Nick Prossi book so it’s nice to write them at the same time!

  15. Tracie says:

    Good Morning Laura, I can feel your struggle posting the sequel on the blog as you write the chapters. You’re such a unique and gifted writer – I can’t wait to turn the pages on your books to see what happens next..a week or two in between chapters could possibly do me in…but on the flip side, the blog interaction would be awesome too! Anxious to read Nick’s story as well, his brother was just WOW!!!!!

  16. Janet says:

    Holy moly!! I agree with Tracie. I will read anything you write about this couple in any version/draft/rewrite but to read a chapter a week or two?!? I don’t know if my heart can handle it. How will I get anything done waiting for the next chapter? Laura are you still shooting for end of this year for Phil and Lina?

    • Laura says:

      Hi Janet!
      Yes — still hoping to have it out by the end of the year. I’ve decided NOT to put up chapters as I go — I’m afraid that would slow the book down. Plus I’m afraid it would stifle my creativity a bit — trying not to make changes. Thanks for the comments!

  17. Liza says:

    Laura I agree with all the FAN girls above and I have to say the thing I like the most about your hero’s is that they are consistently alpha through out the book they don’t change or go soft or become different men…we fell in love with the sexy bastards on page one and they were still sexy BASTARDS albeit, in love bastards at the end. Can’t wait for he next book whichever one comes first 😉❤️👍🏻✅

  18. Tracie says:

    Laura I feel like I missed a bullet…. I’m so glad you decided not to post chapters. Like Janet, I go back and forth in your books to read certain parts again to get the full effect. Your writing is way to good to be fragmented by a chapter at a time. Plus, the anticipation for your new books will make reading them even sweeter!!!! I can’t wait to see how our villain Kim finds out about Lina and Phil reuniting!!!! One of your comments to me was “Phil blames Kim for almost destroying his marriage (justifiably or not).” I believe it is very justifiable being that he told Lina about the affair and the baby. He might have broke her heart, but our villain shredded her with the pictures and text messages. We know that Logan knows about Steamboat, but in the sequel, will the girls (especially Megan) learn the full range of Phil’s betrayal? As vicious as Kim is, I could see her path of destruction extending past Lina to include her children. I also can’t see our villain as an awesome mom being as selfish/vicious as she was in the book. Again, like Janet I want to banish Kim and forgive Phil. Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to read our comments. Have a great day!!!!!

    • Laura says:

      Tracie — Good point! I’m not sure if the kids will learn the full extent, but they’ll learn more. The loose ends left with the Steamboat house will be covered. I agree that Kim wouldn’t be a great mother — she’s too selfish. I’m well in to the sequel and I can’t say Kim has any redeeming qualities LOL. Thanks for the comments! Laura

  19. Janet says:

    argghh. That god-awful vacation home! I wont get over the steamboat incident anytime soon. Why, why, why Phil??!

  20. Tracie says:

    I know right – Janet. I’m kind of hoping Megan gets a little shaken up in the sequel and becomes more neutral between Lina and Phil verses ALL Team Phil. Plus, a pivotal moment for me in the book was when Lina told Phil that he not only cheated on her, but his children.

  21. Liz says:

    I have discovered you as an author and I loved the book but I did have issues.
    My main concern if I was to forgive him is the interaction with Kim over his son.
    Working late, can she trust where he is?

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Liz! Yes for this to work, Lina will have to trust him. As I write the sequel, I’m discovering just how difficult this is for Lina and her children. Definitely a tough road. Having said that, I personally love Phil and want the family to survive — hopefully I can redeem him in the reader’s eyes.

  22. Tracie says:

    Thank you Laura. I know Phil is going to have to take a few guilt gut punches from his family, once back in the fold. I’m hoping Phil sheds a few tears from them as well (Lina cried a river). I know this is a complete contradiction of what I just said; however, they are reuniting..I wouldn’t mind Lina being a little more steamy…??? I bet Phil has plenty of dress shirts and wouldn’t miss buttons off one or two…LOL 😉

  23. Janet says:

    Thank you for always patiently answering our questions and comments Laura. Its been a few weeks since I finished the book but every time I check your blog(more times than I should) certain niggling questions come to my mind. For instance, Did Phil every call the OW “baby” like he does all the time with Lina? Also, did he buy her anything? I ask because he wore the pink tie Kim gave him when he refused to wear pink before and also took her dancing with the “look” he only gives Lina. This made me think maybe he indulged the OW. There are so many of these little doubts I have with Phil but these two stand out in my mind. Of course if they are answered in the book then you don’t have to ruin it by telling us now. I promise I will stop with hounding you and let you finish the sequel!! I just like coming to this blog and seeing others comments and knowing they were as affected as I was with this couple!

    • Laura says:

      You are not hounding me LOL. I love the questions. The first draft of A White Picket Fence had extensive details about the affair. My editor suggested I delete most of them and center on the love triangle — I can see how much frustration the lack of details has given readers. Phil never called Kim ‘baby’. He never gave her gifts. He never for even a second considered leaving Lina. Phil made many mistakes and he will have to suffer because of them, but he never stopped loving Lina. And he never loved Kim — that I can assure you. The look he was giving Kim was one of lust — still hard to take, I know. It was like the perfect storm — the home environment was stressful because of Katie, he and Lina were fighting all the time, and a young beautiful woman was pursuing him. He slipped — big time. I don’t think there is anyone who regrets it more than him.

  24. Tracie says:

    Janet I think you and I are kindred spirits. I know a lot of what we wonder/think/feel about this sequel Laura can’t address. But it is fun thinking them through with you and others on the blog. I wonder how Phil would feel moving back and seeing his son setting the alarms, setting at his seat at the table, holding his mother in church, watching her go up the stairs sad/crying. Logan talks about “Phil giving him the man talks.” Phil just never told Logan he would have to protect his mom/sisters from his betrayal. What does the law firm think about Phil (Wayne)? I have read all Laura’s books two to three times and find something new every time. The text messages Phil sent to Kim are all mechanical on Phil’s part, her replies (only) contain the sexual innuendos. Which tells me for him it was physical. He didn’t call her baby or anything else in the messages. I hope Lina gets to have a heart to heart with Phil and finally tell him out loud her thoughts in the book (retirement plans, what Liam will call her, how the picture of Phil and OW dancing hurt her the most, etc.) Phil also said throughout the book “she is just trying to hurt you or get you to leave me.” OK…what are you (Phil) doing to stop HER!!!! Laura I know you probably want us to hush and just read the sequel when it comes out….But my mom was an avid reader and she always said, when you find an author(hers was Sandra Brown) that’s talented enough that you live her characters…YOU HAVE A WINNER!!!! Congrats Laura…LOL 🙂

  25. janet says:

    OMG. Your editors asked you to delete?!! I know your fans would have pounced and poured over those scenes because we would have insight to the affair. Lord. Ok, we will wait impatiently for the sequel and if possible, don’t listen to your editor! We treasure every word you write. Thank you so much for putting some of the doubts to rest. I will have a good day because of it. LOL Tracie, thanks for the kindred spirit comment. I think you should introduce your mom to Laura’s books(tongue in cheek). I’ve read most of Sandra Brown’s books and she’s good but her words never left me with a book hangover for weeks. We love Laura!!!

    • Laura says:

      High praise — thank you! The editor also wanted Lina to end up with Nick, but there was nooo way that was going to happen. The sequel will be as long as it need to be. I won’t be deleting scenes I like!

  26. Tracie says:

    Laura, I know you’ll knock it out of the park redeeming Phil. I love him too!!!! It’s just the tiniest bit of revenge girl in me (because of Lina and his children hurting so much)that needs him to suffer just a little bit before his redemption.

  27. Tracie says:

    My mom passed away in 1998, but she would have definitely been a big fan of Laura’s. Laura let you editors know it is cool with us, if the sequel is as many pages as a printed version of a Random House Dictionary!!!! 🙂

    • Laura says:

      Your dictionary comment made me laugh out loud! My mother who passed away in 2014 was also a huge Sandra Brown fan!

  28. Tracie says:

    Laura, one of my comments is bothering me, I want to apologize where I said you can’t address all of what we wonder/think feel…(of course you can,the characters are you creation) My meaning was you can’t address them ALL in the sequel. I should of worded that better….

  29. Janet says:

    Tracie, your dictionary comment was right on and so funny!
    Laura, aaah I see now why the editor wanted the scenes deleted if she wanted Nick as the hero. I have to admit he is pretty irresistible and without the deleted details, readers don’t have as much sympathy as we should with Phil. Will you incorporate any of the older material to the sequel? I had fun interacting on the blog with you all today. Thanks for getting back to us so quickly.

    • Laura says:

      I enjoy the dialog! You’re right — the readers clearly needed more detail about the affair. I probably won’t incorporate the old material but I will answer/address the nagging questions and delve into what was going on in Phil’s mind.

  30. Tracie says:

    I’m just saying, if Laura wants to take their relationship in this sequel to the point of them being old and wrinkled swimming naked…..I’m hanging with her! Also, I never thought Nick would be the hero, that would of thrown the storyline of Alice’s astronomy predictions and some of Katie’s part in the book off balance. I did like his support to Lina throughout the book though. I couldn’t imagine Phil not being our hero! Laura Thanks for saving our hero and talking with us today.

  31. Tracie says:

    Good morning Girls, I actually have to work today, …LOL Laura I have one nagging question from the original book. When Phil told Lina about Liam being born December 23, she asked if he had met him and he said yes and she asked how many times? We know he wasn’t at the birth, so how was Phil introduced to Liam and was his parental visitation already in place prior to Lina taking him back? Have a great day……

    • Laura says:

      Hi Tracie — Parental visitation will also be come into play in the sequel — the short answer — legal agreements won’t be solidified until after Phil and Lina are back together. How Phil met Liam? That you’ll have to wait for the sequel — still a work in progress. Have a great day! Laura

  32. Janet says:

    Thanks for the reply Laura! Have a great day ladies!

  33. Tracie says:

    YES!!! Now my mind is jumping from one scenario to another. That’s why you are my favorite author, you always throw a curve ball in your books and I don’t see it until it crosses the plate. I’m wondering now, just how much personal information about his stress with Lina he shared with Kim! This is going to be awesome!!!

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Tracie! I dislike everything about Kim. Did I mention that she bought a house less than a mile and a half from the Hunter’s?

  34. Tracie says:

    Hi Laura, I read A Sense of Belonging again this weekend, in anticipation of Nick’s story. Mr. Jansen is a real poo-diddle-do. So if Lizzie turns out to be Nick’s love interest, that heaping spoonful of KARMA for him would be great. After all, Nonna was 18 when she found her man…..Have a good one!!!!

    • Laura says:

      Hi Tracie! LOL That would certainly be an interesting turn of events. I’m not sure I could take anymore of Mr. Jansen! Nick’s love interest (Madison) is a 27-year-old attorney. She’s more career oriented than my past heroines. She’s fun to write. Have a great day!

  35. Tracie says:

    Laura, I do believe you failed to mention the house!!!!!! Oh my!!!!! I see a rabbit boiling crazo in the Hunter’s future. Wasn’t Phil’s rental the same distance from his house? I thought Kim worked in Washington ( long commute)? Kim is only an associate how does she afford their neighborhood? Please let us know how much Phil has to pay in child support!,, Since they all jog that might make things a little awkward. Lina is going to run into her everywhere! Kim doesn’t realize this will just make Phil hate her more! Please let Phil hold tight to Lina and even though Phil does have to suffer by his own hand, I want Lina to support him as well. That’s the only way I see them surviving and I want that to be!!!! Also, the passcode to Phil’s phone was an issue in the first book, for trust to be rebuilt, I hope she knows it in the sequel. Plus, if I was Lina, I would play her game a little, have the baby (on visitation weekend) on a pallet outside with me why I garden (see some Liam and Lina bonding), that is if the witch doesn’t sneak over after dark and spray them with foliage killer.

  36. janet says:

    Laura, these snippets you share with us are too GOOD!!. You give us a tidbit and Tracie and I respond with gasps and omgs. I too see a rabbit boiling crazo. I mean what nerve! I now have a theory why Kim joined the running group. In the book I thought they joined at the same time so they could be together on Saturdays as well but not I’m not sure anymore. Well you address this issue in the sequel? Seriously, I too need Phil to hate her.

  37. Tracie says:

    So true Janet, I need Tony and Casey steam between Phil and Lina, I want him overly protective of her and I want his attitude toward Kim to be all breathing dragon. I’m also wondering how close Kim and Emily were as well. There could be a whole black widow plot going on here. I hope Lina goes all Loretta Lynn on Kim, with “you ain’t woman enough to take my man.” Janet I think we’ll both have to read the sequel at the hospital so we can be next to a defibrillator and within the golden hour!!!!

  38. Tracie says:

    Laura, will Susan Hunter have an appearance in the sequel? She was a strong character for me too! She holds Lina in high esteem and I would love Susan to rudely snub Kim in defense of Lina.

    • Laura says:

      Yes, Susan is in the sequel. It’s a challenge for a grandmother — hard to be rude to a woman who is raising your grandson!

  39. janet says:

    Lord, Tracie! I just spit out diet coke as I read your defibrillator comment! bahahahaha. You are so funny!!

  40. Tracie says:

    I’m telling you Janet this sequel going to be a heart stopper! !!!!! Yes!!!!

  41. Pattie says:

    I read that your editor felt like Lina should end up with Nick. On some levels I agree. I know that it will not happen, but will you consider giving Nick a book where he has a happily ever after?

    • Laura says:

      Hi Pattie!
      Nick definitely deserves a happily ever after. He may get his own book or he may be a character in another novel. I’m still mulling it around in my head, but I’d like to see him settled and happy!

  42. Tracie says:

    Hi Laura, ok on Susan, but Geez, I don’t want Phil or Susan to pull Kim in for group hugs or campfire songs. It seems to me Phil will have to make it clear to Kim somehow that yes, Liam is MY family, but you are not!!!!!! Phil will have to live what he promised Lina when he said that he would put her needs above everyone else’s and he loved her more than anything in this world. I just can’t stand the though of Lina being the victim again!! Since Susan can’t snub Kim! How about Adele throat punching her??? LOL

    • Laura says:

      We are definitely on the same wave length. No one likes Kim! Lina won’t be a victim in this book — I too couldn’t take any more of that. This book is about justice for Lina! I promise.

  43. Tracie says:

    Thanks Laura……all about the justice!

  44. Deb says:

    Hi Laura, sending thanks all the way from NZ for your fantastic writing! Like other readers of your books, I couldn’t put them down and read them all back to back with many late nights! But more than worth it as they never disappointed! My favourite book was “A Sense of Belonging” but the one I couldn’t stop thinking about was “White Picket Fences”…it was so raw and so real that I felt like I was the one betrayed lol!! I was Team Nick and hoped that Lina would at least have a steamy affair of her own with him but can appreciate that it wouldn’t be in her nature to hurt him or Phil. It was certainly thought provoking and hit home about the fragility of relationships and about never taking them for granted! After I finished the book and thought about their future I envisaged the huge difficulties with the new baby in the mix…I thought maybe Lina should make Phil face up to his responsibilities and his massive mistake by telling him to go and live with Kim for a set time, maybe 3 months so he and Kim get a reality check and have to deal with the realities of domesticity ie: interrupted sleep, colic, crying etc…I imagined that the resultant friction and resentment that Phil would no doubt feel as a middle aged reluctant Dad would certainly put an end to any lingering attraction despite Kim’s best attempts! Meanwhile I imagined Lina carrying on with her life as an independent woman, no longer reliant on her husband and not having to be in the middle of the baby mumma drama Phil has to deal with and being mentally stronger to have him back once he’s proven he no longer has any attraction to Kim and can manage his parental responsibilities in a way that clearly puts Lina and their kids first. I can’t wait to see what you come up with! Thanks so much for sharing your talent with us 🙂

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Deb! Great to hear from you! A Sense of Belonging was definitely my most favorite story to write — pure romance. I was on an emotional rollercoaster during the writing of a White Picket Fence. When I write a story I connect with the female lead and feel their happiness or pain — that book was brutal. That’s probably why, like so many readers, I feel the story is unfinished. Oh My God — can you imagine if Phil lived with selfish Kim? LOL I agree he would hate her but Kim would get too much satisfaction in the beginning — believing she stole him from Lina. I couldn’t stomach it. He will have his share of interrupted sleep and baby crying. It’s interesting to write the sequel because as much as I thought I knew where it was going it seems to be taking on a mind of it’s own. Have a great day! p.s. New Zealand is on my bucket list!

  45. Tracie says:

    Hi Laura, Hope you had a great 4th of July! Your comment back to Deb about Phil having his share of interrupted sleep and baby crying…..screams TIDBIT Alert! I have so many theories and scenarios running through my head about this sequel, I feel like I’m chasing boogers in the night, I don’t know which way to turn! LOL. So agree with we can never give Phil to “Kamikaze Kim” not even for one minute! There is only two ways custody of Liam can go for Phil, that’s either shared or full custody. Either way it’s going to be eventful getting to the end result. I’m just hoping the interrupted sleep and baby crying is done and Phil and Lina’s house and Kim isn’t having him run to her house in the middle of the night! I feel for Lina and her kids though, she has finally got to a place in her life where she has freedom because of her kids being teenagers, not worrying about diapers, bottles,etc. Logan is at an age where he needs his dad more than when he was Liam’s age. Logan also has limited time in the household before he graduates, where Liam has 18 years to go. I see that being a struggle for Phil, maybe trying to be in two places at one time. This is where Lina may have to make hard decisions about Liam (taking care of him) so her own son doesn’t miss out on his time with his dad! However, I do see Phil hitting the realty wall when runs down the stairs in the morning announcing he’s going to exercise and Lina saying “hold up skip”, I’m heading to work and you got Liam to watch. I’m hoping Lina starts to see Liam as an innocent party in this whole mess, just like she and her own kids. Lina will have to look at Liam as a extension of the man she’s in love with, verses a by product of his betrayal. Laura I was wondering if maybe there would be a romantic dinner (or special occasion like their wedding anniversary) in the sequel. Lina’s birthday was a disaster with the pictures, they missed Valentine’s Day with the separation, I just want Lina to have that special day! So looking forward to Lina’s justice and Phil’ s redemption. I love this couple!!!!!!

    • Laura says:

      Hi Tracie! I had a great 4th! I hope you did as well. We are definitely on the same wavelength when it comes to Phil, Lina, Liam and Logan. These scenes almost write themselves — toddlers definitely take away your freedom — what an adjustment.

  46. Tracie says:

    Laura, I have one more question from the first book and I promise you, unless you throw me and Janet a tidbit, I’ll remain silent and anxiously await for all of your books to be released……I wanted to know if there was anything edited out regarding the text message scene. Phil clinched his jaw and was livid;however, did he ever confront Kim? Phil grabbed Lina’s wrist and put the phone in her hand, changed clothes and walked to the bathroom, what were his thoughts? Again, thank you for your kindness and patience in answering our questions and discussing your books. You’re a real gem….Have a great day!!!

    • Laura says:

      LOL you don’t have to refrain from asking questions. I enjoy reading them — I also decide to add scenes to the sequel based on some of this feedback. In response to this question — yes. In the original Phil called Kim and told her he was going to slap her with a restraining order if she ever contacted Lina again. At that point he also cut off all contact and said that they would only talk through attorneys.

  47. janet says:

    Hello!

    I am away but I just got on and saw the new posts! I can’t stay away from this blog and am thrilled to see so many fans engaging here from all over the world. Definitely more food for thought for me and maybe Tracie too. I am so curious to Tracie’s questions and would like to piggyback on another one Laura(I don’t think Tracie and I will be done anytime soon). In the beginning of the book, Phil comes home early from NYC and Lina is surprised. Why did he “wrap” up early? Was he finally coming to his senses before Lina made the first move? Am I reading too much from this one scenario? When Deb commented on Phil possibly having lingering attraction for Kim, I wanted to smack him on the head. She makes sense though because how can lust just disappear if it never fizzled out? Even though his heart was always with Lina, can he control his physical reaction to Kim when just a week before he was still seeing her day and night?? Oh Lord Laura, I hate even having to ask you these questions but there may be more from time to time. I think I may re read some parts tonight… Thank you and have a great week!

    • Laura says:

      Hi Janet!
      Gosh too much was cut from the original. Phil comes home early because his work wrapped up — take that at face value. He and Lina reconnected that night. At that point he realized Kim was a huge mistake. He told Wayne it was over when he went in to his study at his house. That’s why Wayne stopped being cold to him. In the original version, it was obvious Kim didn’t handle the breakup well. She physically attacked Phil at his office and scratched his neck. Huge turnoff for him. Any lingering feelings would have evaporated quickly when she showed him her true colors.

  48. Tracie says:

    Janet so glad you are back! I think the lust/sex from Phil’s point of view was cold and mechanical. No real emotion. You see that in his text messages and when Lina asked him if he loved Kim, he said “No God No!” I think whatever he felt was gone, when she devastated Lina! He had to feel shame and remorse knowing Lina read those messages. Also, what is your take on the crying baby and interrupted sleep for Phil???? I don’t think Phil had any respect for Kim based on the pictures. A man that respects his woman wouldn’t put his hand in the apex of her thighs in front of another man that he was conversing with, nor would he grip her butt for all to see! I bet Phil would never do that to Lina!!! I promised to stay silent, glad you gave me an out sister!!!!

  49. janet says:

    I don’t know what to think about Liam’s situation Tracie! The situation is so messed up.
    It’s way over my head and I just want Laura to resolve it in the sequel. Initially, I wanted Phil to reject the baby because I wanted him to choose Lina and his 3 children over Liam. From the phone convo he had with Kim on chapter 15(I know my fav. chapters!!), I thought it may resolve this way. Now I know that won’t be the case anymore so I am just going to wait and find peace when Laura gives us the book. I have appreciated your theories about Liam/Logan/Lina! Regarding the respect part, I agree with you in part but I also viewed it as a sign of possessiveness on Phil’s part. I mean if it’s just a fling, then keep it indoors. Why is he out and about with Kim and have others see his behavior? Isn’t that a sign of disrespect for Lina? 4 months of this and the steamboat made me think it was a relationship. I’m so hoping Laura can school me here. Please God and please Laura!

    • Linda says:

      Hi girls, I am too hooked up with this novel. I love and hate Phil… I am dying to know his point of view the night Lina was with Nick. How much he suffered thinking about they? Why he was so cold the next day? Hello was your fault!!! Did he contact Kim? Did Kim get pregnant un purpose? Laura you are an amazing author thanks for sharing you time with us 😉

      • Laura says:

        Hi Janet! Nice to hear from you! It was 100 percent his fault but, justified or not, he was deeply hurt when Lina chose Nick over him. He had spent a sleepless night believing she was having sex with Nick. He really believes Lina is his — caveman, I know. That is kind of a critical scene in the book. He believes he has lost the love of his life. His anger is unreasonable but it fit his personality.

      • Laura says:

        Yes, I believe Kim got pregnant on purpose. We can’t know for sure because she wouldn’t admit it, but I believe so.

    • Laura says:

      An affair is disrespectful — there is no excuse regardless of what’s going on in your life. He clearly owes an explanation to Lina (and the readers) in the sequel.

  50. Tracie says:

    Janet who took the pictures of them dancing and setting at the bar? Kim was in those pictures . We know she took the ones of him in bed? Also, why was there no evidence of her being pregnant at the wedding when she was a week shy of 6 months? Laura could take us anywhere with this sequel and I can’t wait.

  51. Tracie says:

    Laura, was there a scene edited out when he went to see Kim after the baseball game??? Kim waited until he broke it off with her to tell him she was pregnant, why??? If Kim thought they had a relationship, and were solid, she wouldn’t have went to the trouble of crushing Lina (my opinion only) and keeping blackmail material on hand (if needed). I think that Phil knew what Kim was capable of doing and that is why he wanted to check on her (at the wedding) after Lina slapped the way out of her. Since the sequel has Phil’s POV will there be scenes with Wayne???? Sorry about the promise to remain silent, I’d be a horrible criminal!!!:(

    • Laura says:

      I don’t think she took the pictures and kept the texts with the intention of using them to hurt Lina. Kim was humiliated at the wedding — she was smacked across the face in front of a crowd. I think she decided to get even — plus she’s still in love with Phil, so she’d like his marriage to end. Phil was generally concerned that she would call the police. Yes, there will be scenes with Wayne and scene’s with Phil’s brother.

    • Laura says:

      No deleted scene. I’m not sure why Kim waited. My guess is that she was afraid of his reaction to the pregnancy news. She was biding her time and probably hoping they would become something more. She initially lied about how pregnant she was — hints at premeditation on her part. She wanted him and went after him.

  52. janet says:

    I did wonder about those pictures. It must have been set up by Kim. Liam was born 12/23 so she got pregnant on purpose in March instead of Feb?As hard as it is for us, we just gotta wait till Laura can give us the “dictionary”. I have a feeling Kim had a had in just about everything including steamboat.

  53. janet says:

    Oh Lord. I think Tracie and I are feeding off each others questions at this point but another thing I wondered about for weeks was when Lina bumps into Kim while dancing at the wedding, Kim says your husband couldn’t get enough of me. Afterwards when Lina confronts Phil in the room, he says he only heard what Lina said to Kim. Is this true? Or did Phil just didn’t want Lina to know that it was true? Until then I was still siding with Phil and believe it was a fling to escape the difficulties at home. When the evidence came out with texts/joint running group/ pictures, I felt he chose to ignore Lina’s “ did you hear what she said to me” comment.

    • Laura says:

      he was being honest. He didn’t hear what Kim said. Kim was just being spiteful and mean — showing her true colors

  54. Tracie says:

    Janet you asked be about respect and sporting Kim around town. Remember Diana telling Lina that Wayne said Phil was discreet? I would imagine the going out was probably done while in New York. I bet he never even considered that his affair would turn out to be a documentary for Lina’s viewing with the pics and messages. Baltimore though….that to me was a risk with the running club (which came back and bit him). My mom use to say, if you wave candy in front of a baby long enough, they will eventually grab for it. That is what I think of, when Phil gave into Kim’s advances. Remember Diana telling Lina that she chased Phil relentlessly??!!! Laura said it was the perfect storm of events to lead him to betray Lina. In my opinion, whether he was indoors or out with Kim, the entire affair was disrespect to Lina. Because I’m pro Phil, I can’t see him having anything lingering for Kim, except contempt. I too trust Laura to spell it out for us and have no doubt it will be exceptional done.

  55. Tracie says:

    Janet, I wondered about that too!!! I kept thinking Lina tell Phil what Kimzilla said….pleassssse!!! I was bummed when she didn’t.

    • Laura says:

      I hate that — when I’m reading a book and I want something to happen and it doesn’t. In the original version Lina saw Kim in a hallway and Kim said some horrific things — like how many times they had had sex. Lina kept it together and basically told Kim she was insignificant and she would always be insignificant. She lost it when she got back to the room and Phil saw her and convinced her to tell him what Kim said. He was livid and tried to storm out of the room to confront Kim — Lina stopped him. He then told Lina that Kim was lying and trying to hurt her — that he had never wanted a woman as much as he wanted Lina etc. etc. Anyway the editor cut out the scene. The slap scene was added at the request of a friend who read an early draft haha

      • Tracie says:

        Laura, When I read your reply…I looked like a cross between a shadow boxer and an air guitarist. Love Love Loved it….Me and you friend could hang out..I’m talking slap the fire out of Kimzilla….LOL

  56. Tracie says:

    Laura, we key on Lina trusting Phil and their relationship. But what about Logan?? I admire the way you keep your characters at their maturity level. You really see that in Chapter 38, when Logan’s anger falters and he tells Phil “I don’t want him to be your son.” Lina made a comment in an earlier chapter when Logan overheard her and Adele talking about Steamboat she said “her innocent boy was gone.” Phil had to be suffering for Logan, how could he not. Will Logan be able to fully trust Phil once he is back or will he be on the fence worried about Phil being weak or making another mistake?

    • Laura says:

      Tracie, Phil and Logan’s relationship is touched on quite a bit in the sequel. This was a significant emotional even for Logan. Lina’s right — it forever changes him and the way he sees his father.

  57. Tracie says:

    That makes me feel a little sad! I just want them to be ok! I can see what you mean now about Phil suffering.

    • Laura says:

      I’m not finding this book sad at all. Phil has obviously been knocked down a peg, but he’s still the dominant male in the house. It’s interesting.

  58. Tracie says:

    I’m sad about how hurt Logan was over his dad and want their relationship to move forward, just like Phil and Lina’s. No doubt from all we’ve talked about that it will happen (makes me happy). Logan was an awesome part of the book and an amazing character. You wrote him to have such a sweet spirit. I’m glad Phil has to be knocked down a peg or two too….you know my little bit of revenge girl and all. Love that Phil is still dominate….no other way to have him…that too is smoking hot!!!!;)

  59. janet says:

    Laura!!!
    That scene in the hallway with Kim and Phil reassuring Lina would have been so important to me. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the slap scene. It was satisfying and Kim deserved more! I too am pro Phil but I sensed his love more from deduction and his character rather than reading it in the book. Also, I wanted to see the desire he had for Lina since love was already understood and with Kim, his lust for her was clearly out there. It really is time for him to cut her down and let her know she meant nothing to him other than a convenient piece blank blank. Thank you for that tidbit. Phil wanting to storm in and confront Kim and saying they were lies-loved that so much!! So just to be clear did Kim lie when she told Lina how many times they slept together? Can you tell us the number? I wanna know!! Although cheating is not my favorite trope but I dont shy away from them. They never bothered me this much. Your book was an angst fest and I know the sequel will become one of my all time favorites😍. Ok after this I will be appeased… till the next person comments. Thank you thank you!!

    • Laura says:

      Okay – here we go. Just writing it makes me feel anxiety for Lina. Kim told her that Phil couldn’t get enough of her — that they had sex sometimes as much as five times a day. It wasn’t true, but hearing it was devastating. Phil was livid and Lina eventually believed his denial. ugh Kim was even more awful in the original.

  60. Tracie says:

    Janet I too appreciate your comments. Together we’re like kettle corn! A perfect mix of sweet and salty Lol!

  61. janet says:

    Tracie, it’s a team effort at this point. Haha. Talk soon! I’m on vacation and still can’t let go of my laptop checking for updates every hr. I should put this blog as part of my news alerts. Only if there’s a way!

  62. Linda says:

    Yes!!! I want to know more about the affair. What he was thinking? if he believes that he lost Lina it will be awesome to know his struggles and emotions… We know so much about Lina’s thoughts and suffering, I just need to understand Phil. Details please!!!

    • Laura says:

      The original title of the book was The Affair. My editor said that the affair wasn’t as interesting as the triangle with Nick, so I basically rewrote the entire book — giving Nick many more scenes and deleting scenes about the affair. The sequel will definitely fill in all the missing pieces plus add quite a few.

  63. Tracie says:

    Laura, 5x a day….Wowza! He sounds more like a stud in the Kentucky Derby than a lawyer!!! That gave me anxiety for Lina too and made me want to snatch that wench ball headed!!!

  64. Tracie says:

    Speaking of that…..Lina is always noticing women notice Phil after she learns about the affair. We know he is caveman over Lina and when they were in public together, he constantly had a hand on her somewhere. Loved it in chapter 47, when he wrapped Lina up when they ran into Nick and Dana! In the sequel, will his POV have the same possessiveness over Lina and men noticing her? I know your wrapping up Steamboat too, will that picture on the nightstand make it to the trash? I doubt Lina could look at it again. Thank you so much for this great dialog!

  65. Tracie says:

    Awesome Laura!!! Thank you for your time and answers today. Goodnight all you blog girls!!! Janet enjoy the vacation!!!

  66. janet says:

    Omg my heart was beating so fast reading your response Laura. Ok I was thinking more like 3. Ugh! Anyway, I like that Kim is awful. I want her to be OTT evil so nobody can sympathize with her. I just have thuggish reactions when I’m reading anything to do with this character. I honestly cannot wait for The sequel but this book discussion of sorts with you, Tracie and others are keeping me sane.

  67. janet says:

    Ooh yes! More ideas= more chapters for us! I have my own hopes and theory for the steamboat incident but I will keep quiet for now. Lot of these questions I post here are more for my reassurance and you always say/write the right thing Laura.

  68. janet says:

    Oh also one more request Laura! Please don’t edit out any scenes between Phil and Kim. I think we all need to see the interactions between these two. The past as well as the present please!! I really want to see it in writing that he treated Kim differently. I mean, of course I know, but I would love to read some of the details of their affair so I can see for myself that Phil loves Lina and Kim was something else entirely. I have gleaned so much from your answers today. Thank you!!!!!!!!! Loved that he contacted Kim regarding a restraining order and loved seeing how Kim handled the breakup when he told her it was over. Also, as Linda commented, I wonder if he confronted Kim after seeing the pictures she sent Lina. Chapters 28 & 29 were brutal and enlightening but at the same time I was so frustrated because I just didn’t know what happened after this uproar.

    • Laura says:

      There will be plenty of new scenes between Kim and Phil in the sequel. Currently the sequel begins several months after the last book ends, but that may change depending on how it goes — as far as the past in concerned — I will write the scenes everyone needs to see — basically Phil confronting Kim after she sends the birthday surprise and after the baby is born. Phil ending it with Kim (where she scratches him), etc. The way the sequel is progressing it almost seems like it could be a stand alone book. I don’t want to force scenes in that don’t belong. If past scenes don’t fit in to the sequel, I will either post them here or email them out when I finish the sequel.

  69. Tracie says:

    Good morning Laura, I just have a few thoughts this morning LOL…God love you..if we keep going like this with both books we may have you writing a trilogy!!!! When Phil left home in Chapter 30, I know his personality and temper kept him from interacting with Lina, unless it was about the children. Were there any scenes edited out about him and Kim during the time he left until Christmas? What were his emotions during that time when he was going home alone. Katie and Megan both commented on how sad he was during that time. After Phil and Lina had made love in the basement (Chapter 43), why did he continue to distance himself? He knew at that time that she had not slept with Nick. Was it to give her the independence she thought she needed or his way of making Lina miss what she had (Phil)? Lina even questioned the distance when he didn’t call or text her after their kiss on the Lacrosse field. What did Phil think of Nick being at the hospital with Lina when Shiloh was in the wreck? Now my question of the day, after the last line in Chapter 48 “I want you to come home, Phil.” was there a really hot scene that was edited out? I know if you can create a swoon worthy scene out of sexy Tony just walking across a restaurant to/from the bathroom (sigh)(CHP 1) … After that one line dropped from Lina, I can only imagine where your talent could take us with alpha Phil…..

    • Laura says:

      After the Christmas scene, Phil started to believe Lina would eventually take him back — he was giving her the space she needed. And of course there was a hot scene after she invited him home — I needed it! The editor didn’t think it was necessary LOL. There were SEVERAL sex scenes between Phil and Lina edited out. Good question about Phil seeing Nick at the hospital — I struggled with that because I knew he would hate it, but at that moment it would have been so inappropriate to put anything before the health of Shiloh and then he was dealing with Lina and her flashback – then she took him back so there was really no where for a jealousy scene. Lina also ran to Phil as soon as she saw him, so…

      As far as how Phil was after he left — devastated. He lost weight and his family worried about him — all edited out. Editors like books at about 89,000 words. This one is actually 98,000.

      • Tracie says:

        Laura, I too need the welcome home scene…My mind has been on overdrive about that last line in Chapter 48, since January. I’ve imagined them after the physical act, needing traction and soft casts. What happened??? How tired were they really????!!!!! Got my email…bring it on Sister.. Remember this Laura…..nothing good for Christmas for the editor. I can forgive the other scenes being cut, but that ONE…not happening…LOL….

  70. Linda says:

    OMG Laura that will be awesome!!!

  71. jany says:

    I adore you Laura!! What you said is everything I want and posting/emailing deleted scenes is beyond awesome!!!

  72. janet says:

    Oops. Just noticed my comment used my email address name. Laura, I adore you comment is from me, Janet.

  73. Tracie says:

    Laura, I just had a thought about the roses Phil sent Lina every year for her birthday. They were by the door with the FEDEX envelope of pictures. You mentioned that Phil confronting Kim about the BD surprise will be in the sequel, not knowing how the scene will be used or when (but can’t wait to find out)….those roses just like the picture at Steamboat, would probably be a significant reminder of Phil’s betrayal. I doubt Lina would ever want Phil to send her roses again for her BD, since she stuffed the last ones in the toilet, which to me (my thoughts only) could have been a visual statement to Phil of exactly what he had done to their marriage….I would think that tradition is destroyed too! (ugh)

    • Laura says:

      Very good point. Poor Lina will have several triggers that transport her back to that awful day. I like your visual statement to Phil with the roses. I didn’t consciously intend that but I like it!

  74. Tracie says:

    Laura. I was going to wait on this comment, but it too causes me some anxiety and even though I’m Pro Phil, I wanted to filet him!! Chaprer 1 – when the text message from Kim came through about wanting to see him, Monday was too far away! (Ewww). As Phil was reading the message, he asked Lina what time Logan’s game was the next day! I assume contemplating if he could carve out time for her. As he left their bedroom he put his phone in his pocket! Did he answer that text message prior to their reconnection a few hours later? Was Phil aggravated at Lina over the dinner with Wayne and Diana because Wayne was mad at him over Kim or that would preclude him from seeing Kim before Monday? When Phil came to bed did he want Lina to be a sleep? When she initiated the reconnection she said it has been nearly three weeks since they had sex. My first reaction was poor Lina she’s getting pity sex once a month, then after our dialog, I wondered if it was the caveman mentality and he was having just enough intimacy with her to keep her at home while he played else where? Since they were having minimal sex during that 4 months while his affair with Kim was on-going and their connection was not there between them, was that sex with Lina mechanical as well?
    Thank you Laura for all your time to calm our fears and enlighten us of the past and things to come. Have a great evening!

  75. Janet says:

    Tracie, these are such great questions and partsI kept going back to see if I missed anything. I think Phil was going to meet Kim for the “run” before his aha moment that night. I also think he wanted her asleep because he came into the room saying how tired he was and Lina had to initiate sex. To give him credit, I don’t think he wanted to deal with another fight so he was avoiding her. And damn him, I think he was having the occasional sex with her so she wouldn’t suspect he was having an affair. I mean this guy can go all night supposedly and only 5x in their marriage has he gone without longer than 3 weeks. I’m really hoping I am wrong in all this but as I see it, until Lina brought him back to their real world his affair was still ongoing. Lastly, Wayne was mad at Phil for the affair. They were not talking remember? It was at the dinner that their relationship was restored bc of Phil’s aha moment.

  76. Laura says:

    Great questions! No Phil never answered her text. He was contemplating meeting Kim when he asked Lina the time of Logan’s game. Janet is correct — Phil was upset about going to Wayne’s because there was a strain in their relationship because Wayne knew he was having an affair. Yes, Phil wanted Lina to be asleep when he came to bed because he didn’t feel like arguing with her — when he admits the affair to her he mentions how she was mad at him all the time. I was implying (obviously a bit too subtle) that Lina was rejecting him — remember when she told Nick she began initiating sex — that was because she had stopped and often rejected him.
    When Phil said he wasn’t going running in Baltimore the morning after he and Lina reconnected it was because he didn’t want to chance seeing Kim — he was done. He told Wayne that when he saw him at dinner and then Kim a few days later.
    As far as the sex Lina and Phil had during the affair — it wasn’t so she wouldn’t suspect he was having an affair. It was more because she was his woman and if she was receptive he wanted to have sex with her — definitely more mechanical in nature than when their connection was restored. Ugly I know, but I think realistic.

  77. Tracie says:

    Janet remember in the book after Text message scene chapter 22, I can’t find it, but I remember Lina saying somewhere that she couldn’t believe he was texting Kim in their home with her there. That’s why I wondered about the message in chapter 1. Never thought about the “I’m tired comment” meaning but I think you are exactly right!! I agree on Wayne too! Now that I think about it, Phil would have never believed Lina would look at another man…yep he was doing just enough homework to fly under the radar!!!

  78. Tracie says:

    Janet read Chapter 1 where Phil is reading the text message? He is literally checking times with his wife to schedule time for his side tart! He was cold in that first half of Chapter. But I got to give it to our girl Laura, she got my attention right out of the gate!

  79. Tracie says:

    Thanks girls! Laura so glad he didn’t respond to text! I bet that drove Kim nuts playing the waiting game all weekend! (Yay)! I like the (caveman)his woman statement about having sex with Lina during that time! I think that is why your hot scene that was edited out in Chapter 48 would of been awesome, at that point there was no love triangle just a straight line!! You know the healing power of love and all! Lol.

  80. janet says:

    Thank you for setting me straight Laura. I’m happy to hear he didn’t text Kim either. Tracie and I are dissecting chapter by chapter at this point. Man, I get riled up! Tracie, so true about the texting at home. I even remember the time(8:52pm) when Phil texted K about coming over at 7:30 the next morning!!. Argggghhhhhh. Also, I’m so glad we found out the reason for infrequent sex during the affair. That’s one scene I totally got it wrong.

  81. Tracie says:

    Me too Janet. Lina just doesn’t seem like the type to reject Phil in any way shape or form. The more we learn from Laura the more intrigued I become with this couple!!!!

  82. janet says:

    Good morning! I thought I would get my question in today and give everyone a break for the weekend.;) . So we know how the affair started the night in the City after a bad phone convo between Phil and Lina. Later on when Phil confesses his affair to Lina, she says that sounds like a one night stand, how did it become an affair? Phil just tells Lina “then it became more”. I would like to know anything was edited out with the morning after scene with Phil and Kim. ONS is something I can see happening with Phil but how did he feel the morning after? Did he regret his actions(I’m sure drinks were involved here)? Did he try to end it at this point and Kim swayed him otherwise or something Phil decided to pursue since it was an outlet for him? I’m also wondering if they discussed protection since Phil doesn’t like to use condoms and if he asked Kim was clean? I remember when Phil was talking to Kim on the phone in chapter 15, he said he has told Kim before he would never leave Lina. I’m curious if this was all happened the morning after their first night together. Lastly, I know I have asked you before Laura if Phil showed any affection towards Kim by indulging her and you told me no. I know how protective he is with Lina- he is always holding her when she sleeps and looking into her eyes for the connection when they make love. Did he do this with Kim? Hold her after sex while they slept during their travels and look into her eyes during sex?
    Ok that’s it for me for this week. Have a great weekend!!

  83. Tracie says:

    Janet the comment Lina made about Phil texting in the house was Chapter 23! She was telling Nick about the texts I’m the wine bar.

  84. Tracie says:

    Janet….I too wondered about the “and more”! The protection part I also wondered if maybe (just maybe) he did use condoms and she pin poked them to her advantage.. Then I backed down on that assumption, because Phil had been faithful to Lina for 25 years and doubt he carried one! I think Phil may have got wrapped up in the new aha as we now code it and just got carried away with the excitement of the act and Kim’s full attention. My perception is Lina Spoiled Phil, and yes they were fighting over Katie, but Lina as a mother was striving to help her daughter and her attention was not fully on Phil, but on her child. I’m sure Phil paid first date type flirty attention to Kim, I don’t know about the all snuggle naps, etc! That might be pushing it for him!! I believe his only true connection was with Lina and his misplaced loyalty cost him dearly.

    Laura I wonder what was Phil’s thoughts when Nick had him restrained and told him to leave, and that he was a black belt and could pretty much kick his butt!! Between Lina choosing Nick and the knowledge he couldn’t have Nick drinking through a straw must of been crushing!!!

  85. janet says:

    well, I wondered about condoms because Lina said at one point that Phil hated condoms. It ruined his pleasure and that’s why Megan is a honeymoon baby. I think he talked about it with Kim after the first night and she probably said she would take care of it but didn’t. We can deduct Kim is an experienced and worldly woman who probably had multiple partners while Phil only had Lina for 25 years. I know Phil only loves Lina but we saw the tactile pics with Kim I wondered if he did touch her during sleep and the eye connection.

  86. Laura says:

    I didn’t write any scenes from Phil’s POV in the first book, so the reader is as blind as Lina. Having said that I do know the answer LOL. I’m sure he felt guilty after the first time with Kim. He probably initially regretted it, but Kim continued to make herself available and tensions at home pushed him further from Lina. Phil didn’t like condoms and of course Kim told him she was safe and had contraception covered. No, he didn’t cuddle with her and stare into her eyes like he does with Lina. He liked Kim (she was smart and probably interesting) and was very attracted to her once she broke down his walls of resistance. I’m sure he was flirty, but their relationship was at least 90 percent based on sex. As far as what he was thinking when he was schooled by Nick? That was probably the worst night of his life. I’m sure he still believes he could take Nick — just an unlucky miss with the fist hitting the wall. Once his hand was shattered it wasn’t really a fair fight.

  87. Tracie says:

    Laura, i promise too (right after this post), I’m going to do something else this weekend besides throw questions and thoughts at you, LoL ..Chapter 47…..Lina and Phil’s little kiss on the Lacrosse field. Lina had said Phil hadn’t had much interaction with her after the talk about his son (chapter 44). So I wondered why Phil even initiated a kiss to her cheek at the lacrosse game. As luck would have it, Lina’s, possessive side took over and Phil obliged with a more deeper lip kiss! Did he see Nick when he took Lina’s face in his hands? Because as soon as Phil walked off Nick was by Lina. Nick even said he would of come over sooner, but he didn’t want to interrupt. Also, Lina put Phil’s ring back on before he picked her up for the pre-dance picture party. Did Phil ever take his off during the separation? His ring is mentioned twice, once in the pictures of him and Kim and when Lina went to see him after he had surgery. I was wondering that in the sequel, would there be social events were Lina would have to be around the law firm employee’s? I know he said at the wedding, after the slap scene, that everyone in the room knows about the affair now. Would they now pity Lina or think she is an idiot for taking him back? It would be hard for me, if I were Lina, to have my coming out, so to speak! Have a good weekend girls and thank you Laura!

  88. Janet says:

    Hi Tracie, you and I need a better social life right?! Me more so because I’m still on vacation but I rather read Laura’s answers and your posts. I think by now we can take a lot of what Phil does and says at face value. He’s not a calculating person from what gleaned from Laura’s answers here on the blog. I never thought about the kissing cheek part but he was surprised Lina turned her face to meet his lips. Wasn’t this after Christmas when they’ve already been intimate? The brief kiss at the game I think was his natural reaction. If he knew nick was nearby it probably would have been a liplock. As far as the ring goes I 100 percent believe he never took it off. He prayed everyday for her return and never lost hope. I mean if he kept it on for everyone to see even when out with Kim, what would be the point of taking it off when he wasn’t ever going to initiate the divorce? The only part that niggled me was when they were having dinner after dropping Logan off, and the question Lina asked Phil. Instead of does he ever go out or meet women at bars, i would have asked does he ever think of Kim and How it could be truly over with her when they share Liam together. I guess that’s an answer for the sequel. Lastly, omg about mingling with coworkers. Feel so bad for Lina but after 2 years hopefully the drama has settled down!!

  89. Tracie says:

    Janet, tell me about it…I was on vacation a few weeks ago and was in bed by 10! It was a girls trip too! You probably right on Nick and Phil!!! But Phil could spin a lie like about the tie and Sreamboat, so I think he could be calculating to get what he wanted. I also wonder what happened in those 6 months. Did he follow her pregnancy, did she stalk his rental. She left Lina alone while they were separated, now I’m anxious to see what Kim will do in the sequel. But Laura did say that after the text messages he cut off all communication with her and said they would only talk through their attorneys. I wonder if Lina ever noticed the scratch on his neck after Kim attacked Phil in his office. Did she Laura? I’m also anxious to see the scenes with Wayne. Phil (in my opinion) set a precedent by having an affair with an associate. He’s a hot partner, now what is going to stop another female associate from trying to stake a claim or break his walls down, This has to effect his professional reputation, don’t you think?

  90. Tracie says:

    Janet I wanted to clarify, that I don’t think Phi would ever cheat again with another associate, I’m just saying another associate could cause office drama.

  91. Laura says:

    Ladies — I too need a life because I am enjoying this back and forth as much as you seem to be. Janet is right — Phil would never remove his wedding ring. If he had known Nick was on the lacrosse field he would have instigated much more than a cheek kiss. He had minimal contact with Kim during her pregnancy and she never would have learned where he lived. She could bide her time, knowing once the baby was born he’d have to see her. Yes, in the original Lina saw the scratches which resulted in a heated discussion – where did it happen, did anyone witness it etc (it happened in his office and he had to close his door and restrain her because she got a bit hysterical). Janet, I think you’re right — in retrospect I wish Lina had asked about Kim — knowing he had interactions with her would be tough. Tracie — yes Lina will have to deal with the humiliation of everyone knowing her husband fathered a child with another woman. And good point about his reputation in the office — I’m sure every new associate hears the story. It’s just too juicy to keep under wraps. All of this will be in the sequel. Good night ladies!

  92. Tracie says:

    Couldn’t stand it girls….. this is short though…..Laura does Kim have a family (parents or siblings)?

  93. Liza says:

    Laura you are such a gifted writer and I love your men…this being said and while you are working on and finishing three books IS THERE ANYONE out there that writes the way u do or has inspired you that can fill in some “reading while we wait on you” time hmmm? Give us a name I’m sure they won’t live up to u but I’m in a “need a book now wasteland”
    Thanks Liza

    • Laura says:

      Thank you Liza!

      The last romance I absolutely loved was Unsticky by Sarra Manning (couldn’t put it down)
      Other recent books I’ve enjoyed — The British Knight by Louis Bay, The Forbidden by Jodi Ellen Malpas and Look the Part by Jewel E Ann. I loved Judith McNaught growing up — Whitney My Love is one of my favorites. Best romance ever (in my opinion) is Pride and Prejudice (it’s rated G though LOL).

      • Tracie says:

        Laura, I’ve read all those books except for two! But your books are by far my favorite……. I knew Kim’s family would have to slide in here somewhere, especially now that Liam is here. I also thought about what you said regarding the rose comment…. that poor Lina would have several triggers of that awful day. That awful day was her birthday, that comes around every year! (Ugh)! I’m hoping that Lina will hold her head high during the humiliation she must go through. I’m wondering how Phil will react to her being hurt or ridiculed by others for his betrayal? Janet – I was thinking about your comment how can it truly be over with Kim, when they share Liam. I know you can share a child and not have a relationship (I did it with my ex). You each have a relationship with the child, but not with each other. My own opinion (Laura please correct me if I’m wrong), that Phil considers Liam’s mom as a vessel that brought his son into this world! Not someone Phil has feelings, love or wants in his life. He’s said in Chapter 44 that he regrets the circumstances surrounding Liam’s conception; wishes he was Lina’s. Chapter 47 when he says he will regret his betrayal everyday for the rest of his life. Laura will have to say for sure, but I feel like his feelings and relationship with Kim will be sterile, void of emotion (except for maybe anger or contempt), I think Liam will be his main focus where Kim is concerned. Phil has his second chance with Lina and he doesn’t want to mess that up either. I’m hoping Phil’s keeps his promises to Lina in Chapter 24 and goes all romantic hot caveman cherishing her the whole way, loving his kids, integrating Liam into his family and maybe having a couple of guys show up with a straight jacket to cart Kim off….LOL! Laura will there be any scenes with Lina and Kim? Will Phil have a soulmate connection scene in the sequel, where he knows Lina needs him? Thanks Laura, I really tried to stay off the blog, but it was just too much of a pull for my inquiring mind…..LOL

        • Laura says:

          You are correct about Phil’s feelings for Kim — it’s tough avoiding interactions, however, when you share a child that young. Yes, there will be scenes with Lina and Kim. As far as the soulmate connection — I hope so!

        • Laura says:

          Have you read Unsticky? Just curious what you thought of it. Sometimes how much you like a book depends on your mood, but I really, really liked that one and was sad when it ended.

      • Liza says:

        Look the part is one of my top 5 also read Whitney my love and really like Louise Bay will definitely ck our Unsticky thanks
        This Man by JEM awesome haven’t read the other yet

  94. Tracie says:

    Hi Liza, I was also wondering through the wastelands and found a book called Stuck-up Suit, by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward. It was a good filler…..as you can tell I’m also anxiously waiting for Laura’s releases…..lol

  95. Liana says:

    Hi Laura

    Counting the days for the sequel for Phill and Lina! I hope in this second book Kim gets the Karma she deserves.. maybe show a confrontation of Phill- Lina-Kim with Phill making it clear that he loves only Lina and even sharing a child with Kim will not change that… in the first book I keep wanting to see Phill flip and get angry at Kim not just towards Lina or Nick or Katie (although there is the phone call to Kim but he seems to be so professional like the lawyer he is in the conversation).. Kim acts like she is so sure of herself with no remorse for braking up a family… because she’s young beautiful smart etc. Flaunting to Lina how Phill chose that aspect of her over Lina… maybe a scene where Phill tells Kim that even when he was with her he was imagining Lina? That would really satisfy me 😁

    • Laura says:

      Hi Liana! There will be no doubt in anyone’s mind exactly how Phil feels about Kim. We all know how cold he can be and so far (as I’m writing the sequel) his personality is coming through loud and clear. He’s in love with only one woman. He cares only about one woman. Kim is selfish and spoiled. She’s also smart and beautiful and use to having men fall at her feet. There will be plenty of scenes showing the interaction between her and Phil — it was impossible to do in the first one because it wasn’t from his POV. I think this book will be very satisfying for those hoping Kim receives the Karma she deserves!

  96. Tracie says:

    Laura, I haven’t read Unsticky or Whitney My Love. I did buy Unsticky yesterday and will start on it this evening and let you know. Soulmate connection comment has me feeling anxious….I won’t lie about that…..I need them to survive and have their HEA! I just remember you saying this sequel is justice for Lina and justice is Kim gone and her and Phil swimming naked together….LOL…The reason I feel anxious about that comment is because you surprised me so much (curve ball) in Joseph’s story, on how his investment strategy effected his and Tony’s working relationship. Most books would of been a Bro hug and don’t do that again!!! Now I’m scared…about my Phil and Lina!!!! That’s why I love your books, I don’t figure them out midway, you maintain your characters integrity all the way through the book and you keep them at their maturity level. That really came to light for me, reading Sense of Belonging when Casey got 21ish on her text messages over his ex-girlfriend, when Tony was in Vale. Tony laid it out plan and simple…”I don’t do this answer the phone and talk to me like an adult.” LOVED IT!!!! But that is what a 21 year old would do…Lol… No details… but please throw me a warm fuzzy for Lina and Phil…I need it like a warm hug…LOL….Also, don’t you think Janet would be all over the triangle in Stuck-up Suit, especially at the Hampton’s? I see by the dialog she needs to see the disconnect (really bad) between Kim and Phil to pull him back into the fold. I do too Janet!! I need to see him treating Kim colder than he treated Lina after she asked him to leave. Lina couldn’t even ask him how he was during that time, it was almost to much for me. That is why I need to see his contemptuous attitude toward Kim. Most off all, I need to see his romantic Alpha side for his wife, and Lina to step up her game. I don’t think she ever called Phil a term of endearment, did she? I’m going to assume Laura, that some things will be a given…like the separation agreement is null and void, bank account joined together as one again…I know word count is important, so unless you say otherwise I’m going to assume that all of that was accomplished. Also, your comment on sharing a young child…interrupted sleep and crying….if Kim has Phil running to her house in the middle of night, I’m hoping Lina is stuck to him, like a barnacle on a boat bottom. No way should Lina allow him to go without her and Phil should even tell Kim she’s coming, so not to put himself in a compromising situation. Just the thought has me spun-up!!!!! Phil ran out to the driveway every time Nick drove up…..so it would only be fair for Lina to go…LOL

    • Laura says:

      LOL. You’re too funny. Your warm and fuzzy is that I am a romantic and believe in HEA. Having said that, in most cases when I’m writing a novel the scenes unfold before me. I don’t plan what’s going to happen. I have a general idea where I’m going but the story seems to take on a mind of it’s own. I was as surprised as you that Tony took such a hardline with Joseph. And like I said before, when I first wrote a White Picket Fence I didn’t know until about seventy five percent of the way through which man she would end up with — I think unconsciously I probably knew, but there was a small part of me that thought it could be Nick. So as I write the sequel I can feel this story again taking off and like the reader I’m not sure exactly what’s going to happen. But, again — I’m a romantic so you can count on a HEA.

      • Tracie says:

        Thanks Laura I feel like I’ve been loved up on now with the warm fuzzy and HEA!!!! Phew….that is a load off!! I’m a romantic too…Just like the soft coming and going kisses all your men throw at their women,SMOKING HOT!!! I just had another thought (I know…you are thinking really!!!) Will Logan and Nick’s son still be friends in the sequel? I can’t wait to read Phil’s thoughts of any jealousy he may have over Lina and male attention thrown her way. Was Kim jealous of Phil’s children in the first book? Speaking of funny, in Nick’s book, I hope Casey is pregnant with twin girls…Loved me some Alpha Tony when he said he only made boys….HOT!!!

  97. Tracie says:

    Laura, one more thought for now..LOL…Phil has now seen Kim’s true colors…will he also get to witness those same flaws in her as a mother? We know he admitted to Lina being the better parent in their relationship. I just wondered if he would compare the two as mothers? I don’t think Kim would like Liam putting wrinkles in her pencil skirt or throwing up on her silk blouse. I may be wrong, but what we know of her now, her own selfish instincts would seem to come first over her maternal ones.

    • Laura says:

      Phil and the reader will see exactly what kind of mother Kim is!

      • Tracie says:

        OH MY GOSH…..I can’t wait for your new books. I’ve already told my family and friends…that the minute you tell us your new books are being released, they are all getting “Save the Date” magnets for their refrigerators, and unless they needed blood, don’t call, text or come over!!!! I’ll send a group text out with an “ALL CLEAR” after I recover from by book hangover!!!

  98. Liana says:

    Dear Laura and all the ladies here.. I just want to say that I really enjoy the discussions here (even if I don’t post much). I will definitely check out the books recommended here. I’ve read whitney my love and it’s one of my favorites! Have you read the author’s other books Laura (once and always! Swoon!)? No doubt you are one of my favorite authors now (read all of your books too, multiple times! Relishing the best romance book hangovers afterwards 😁😁😁. Another oldie but goodie romance I like is the one in my heart by sherry thomas.. I am currently rereading my favorite books but once your new books are out this year I would probably go on a book retreat just for reading them all!😉😉😉

    • Laura says:

      Thanks, Liana! I’ve never heard of Sherry Thomas — I will definitely check her out! I’ve read all of Judith McNaught many times — I love all her historic romances. The contemporary were okay, not my favorite.

  99. Tracie says:

    Hi Liana, I too would love to see Phil put Kim in her place with Lina present….our girl Laura will ensure Lina’s justice and Phil’s redemption…I see Kim going down!!!! Have a great evening,,,,

  100. Janet says:

    Wow! I go away for couple days and so many new posts. This site is so great!! I will purchase sarra Manning’s unsticky as soon as I leave this site. Loved Clay(I think?) and Whitney and my fave Tori and Ian from JM and also love anything by Penelope Ward(Jake duet), Vi Keeland and adore everything by Sherry Thomas too! Also, one of the best writers other than our Laura is Lisa Kleypas imo. Once and always is one of my all time favorites. So glad we share similar taste in romance which makes sense. Regarding the most anticipated sequel, I think there is only one way to end this book to make tracie and me happy. LOL. Unless Kim does a complete 180 she will stay selfish and evil. If she can’t have Phil at the end, will she want Liam?? I guess we wait and see what happens. I completely trust Laura will deliver and then some!! For me it’s more about the details and explanations about the “incidents” Laura will gift us and getting to read Phil’s thoughts. That alone is everything. Thank you for this blog!

  101. Liana says:

    To Tracy and Janet! It’s great to find “sisters” in romance novels that understands the crazy things you do for a good romance novel… like finishing a book in one go or getting obsesed with a sequel! 😂😂😂 (I literally get strange looks when I tell people this). Thanks for connecting us Laura, blog is awesome!

    • Laura says:

      I too am a binge reader. If I like a romance, I don’t stop reading until it’s over — it doesn’t matter how long it takes — and then I wish I had read it slower. Thanks for all the book recommendations!

    • Tracie says:

      Liana, you are right….we have to stick together and the next time you get one of those strange looks….just tell them binge reading romances is cheaper than therapy!! LOL!

      • Tracie says:

        Janet I’ve decided we have to quit promising and putting unrealistic timelines on ourselves, about not stalking this blog, just stifles OUR creativity LOL! Laura has probably resigned herself to the fact… she’s like RadioShack….we got questions..she got answers!! (I hope someone remembers that commercial or the store RadioShack). LOL.

        Girls I started reading Unsticky!

  102. Janet says:

    Hi Tracie. I remember the commercial! LOL. Im finishing up The Good Wife by Jane Porter(chick lit). It’s ok. The husband cheats here and wife has hard time trusting him. I wanted similar theme to tide me over for a bit. Purchased Unsticky. Will start that next!

    • Liana says:

      Hi Janet! The same with me! I’m also going for the same themes in my readings now! Will be looking at the good wife… just read the first time by joy fielding same infidelity with a beautiful sad ending.

      OMG can’t wait to see in the sequel scenes that seem to show Phil making an effort for Kim but is actually all Kim’s manipulation… there were so many scenes where I felt actual pain on my chest (Laura your writing is that good!) because I feel for Lina! Btw I love how the kids stuck by Lina and I am eager to see this again in the sequel.. particularly Megan… I want to see her (being the one who seem to be able to accept Phil after the affair) lash out at Kim!

  103. Janet says:

    I have a question for the day. In chapter 8, when Phil is confessing to Lina about the affair she asks him if Kim is beautiful. He answers that he only ever thought Lina was beautiful. Is this true? If so what did he think of kim when he first saw her? I know you told us when Kim broke down Phil’s wall he found her very attractive. Does he find Lina’s beauty different than Kim’s? I don’t mean the inner beauty because he only discovers how nasty Kim is after he breaks up with her at the office?

    • Laura says:

      Very interesting timing on your question. Today I wrote a scene where that exact question is touched upon and answered. Do you want me to answer it?

  104. Tracie says:

    Laura, I also wondered about Lina’s physical looks too, she describes herself in comparison to Diane in Chapter 1, but how pretty is she really? We know Phil is a walking hottie! The scene in Chapter 46 where she was in the bar with Adele and Lina thought the Accountant Adele had invited to the table was looking at her like she was his next meal!! So I’m assuming she is hot too!

  105. Janet says:

    No I will wait!!!!!!! I don’t want to spoil it for others!! Seriously this is becoming the most anticipated sequel. Is the release still around December Laura? Lord It’s not even August.

  106. Tracie says:

    Oh Janet so glad you said wait!! Laura multiple choice is not an option for us!! lol. But you can tell me about the edited out hot scene in Chaprer can I give you rated G questions about it and you answer? Lol

  107. Tracie says:

    Chapter 48, I got so flustered I forgot the number! Lol

  108. Tracie says:

    Ok Laura here we go, passionate kiss with a yes on the invite? Phil sent the kids to church, get pizza or to Matt’s? Since they were at the hospital all night I’m thinking shower, then sweeet bedroom rumba, then snuggle nap!

  109. Janet says:

    Thank God you agree Tracie. We both need the book now but want to savor these scenes right? Laura will you address the running group scene? Just want to know if Kim joined so she can be with Phil on weekends as well or if they joined at the same time so they can be together on weekends. Gawd hate her so much! Can you just kill her off and make us happy? j/k (but not really). Ok. Good night everyone!

  110. Janet says:

    Ugh don’t know about the shower scene Tracie! He did that with Kim if he followed Kim’s instructions on the text. Too fresh in my brain since I read the book 2 months ago. What I’m thinking of Phil as a lover is he was selfish with Kim and really just concentrated on his pleasure (we know he is selfish by nature) and giving with Lina.

  111. Tracie says:

    Janet.. Right as rain sister! I love going over the scenes and thoughts from the book, but like you,I don’t want to post our theories for the sequel. That baby needs to be a big surprise!!

  112. Laura says:

    Have any of you read Life Without You by S.P. West? I can’t recommend it because it made me soooo angry. I just couldn’t move on from his affair. She can definitely write.

  113. Tracie says:

    Laura, I’ve read it and you’re right about the affair. Alex was one weak coward to me. Even though the first part of Chapter 1 was rough for me, Phil wasn’t cruel. Have a good day ladies…..

  114. Tracie says:

    Laura, here are my two questions for the day….

    In Chapter 38, when Phil tells Logan he doesn’t have a right to judge him, until he is 42 and has lived a mistake free life. What had Logan said before that comment? I think another time when I wanted to filet Phil was again early in the book, when he took Logan to a Lacrosse game and told Lina when they got home that to watch the game was painful, she could take him next time. No wonder Logan thought he was a disappointment to Phil. What is Phil’s mom (Susan) going to think about Liam being an illegitimate child? Phil says in the epilogue, at Lina’s parents wedding, that his mother would be glad that she was no longer from a broken home.

    • Laura says:

      It wasn’t that what Logan was saying wasn’t true — he was telling him how sinful his behavior was — it was more that he was being chastised by his fourteen-year-old son. Phil’s personality would see that as disrespectful. As far as lacrosse is concerned — he said that comment to Lina, not Logan, but it’s clear Logan’s play level is frustrating to Phil (sorry, our man has a few flaws — I don’t think I’d go as far as Janet and call him innately selfish LOL — still stinging from that haha). He wants Logan to be more competitive which probably just isn’t in him . Susan is devastated by the affair, the child — all of it, but Liam is her grandson and she will want to know him.

  115. Tracie says:

    I don’t mind our man having a few flaws, that is just him and I still love him!!!! Phil’s comment was made to Lina, but as a mother, Phil probably would of carried me on his back a few feet while I was smacking the back of his head. That comment was just rude and about Lina’s baby!!! Poor Susan…I knew she would be devastated!!! Lina taking Phil back should ease her mind some. Thank you Laura

  116. Janet says:

    I read Life Withou You too! I hated the guy while he was having the affair but understood how his attraction grew bc we got to see it. When he took the coworker to Hawaii though, I wanted him maimed( that’s why I had such a difficult time with Phil). But now I know Phil’s situation will be different so I’m better. Anyway I liked the book. I like that he had 3 yrs of suffereing without summer. Another one in same category is admissions of guilt by Roxanne winkler. Oh one more. Torn up marriage by Caroline Roberts. Touchy/angst subject on cheating but good

  117. Tracie says:

    Janet I read admission of guilt. But it didn’t have the substance that Phil and Lina’s story had. It was just ok for me. Reading unsticky now.

  118. Janet says:

    Hi Tracie. Completely agree. The writing was choppy and I read it before WPF. But remember how it ended? I’m thinking thats what needs to happen here. Did you read torn up? The writing is good. I’m excited you started Unsticky. Let me know! I bought it. Did you read any other cheating book you can recommend me?

  119. Janet says:

    Hi Liana! I just saw your posts. Don’t know how I missed some before. I agree with your about everything. Couldn’t have said it better. I too need Phil to show his contempt for Kim in front of Lina and it sounds we are gonna get that and more. I don’t know how we will all last till December. I never heard of joy fielding so I will look into it now. Have you read the ultimate betrayal by Michelle Reid? It’s a harlequin so it’s short and old but Michelle Reid writes angst really well. And again as Laura said the SP West book has a cheating theme and well written. Take care!

    • Liana says:

      Hi Janet! Yes I’ve read Michelle Reid and SP West. I can’t get over Alex’s betrayal as well!

      I still say Phill is by far the best husband redeeming from being unfaithful… thank you Laura!

      I Will be checking on the books you recommend Tracie!

  120. Tracie says:

    Hi girls, if I told you about my day you wouldn’t believe it anyway LOL! But I’m so tired I feel mellow, so Laura on my Chapter 48 scene that was edited out, did my man Phil whisper something sweet in the edited out scene, like thank you Lina, I’m so grateful to be in my bed, your arms, cherish you etc! I need sweet today!

    • Laura says:

      Of course! He said everything a hero should say at that moment and he meant it!
      In the sequel they are currently having an argument/disagreement — hate writing these scenes, I feel like I’m part of them. I actually feel anxiety when writing them ugh

  121. Tracie says:

    Don’t feel bad sister, they are not Ward and June Lol! They will have to go through the storm to get to our HEA! Don’t let either one of them leave that house, lock them in the basement if you have too!

  122. Tracie says:

    I can’t imagine all the feelings you have to cycle through writing your books..I literally was fighting mad on the first part of Chapter 1! I felt Lina’a Betrayal throughout the book! I admire you for your talent!!

    • Laura says:

      The difference between reading a book and writing a book is the length of time you’re in the scene. It’s great when you’re writing a happy scene, but brutal during the sad scenes. The birthday scene was the worst for me — especially when she was going through the pictures. I actually cried when I was writing it LOL

      • Tracie says:

        I had to stop reading that scene and take a couple of deep breathes! My heart broke for her! That’s why your books are the best, you live them, while you write them. Thank you for that Laura.

  123. Tracie says:

    Laura, don’t tell me if yes or no.. but I hope to see a gooey scene with Liam and Lina, that Lina is unaware that Phil is watching or saw…I want to read his POV on what a special gem he has in Lina!! I know sappy right!!

  124. Liza says:

    Are you preparing us (down the road) for a steamy relationship between Taylor and Michael (A sense of belonging) 😉 would be great then we can catch up with Tony and Casey lia and joseph

    • Tracie says:

      Liza, good golly girl, we are on the same wavelength!! I love the older man younger woman romance!!! I’m also hoping Laura wakes up and has a story for Adele someday! Love that girl!

      • Laura says:

        I struggle with Adele because her personality is soooo different than mine. She would make a feisty heroine though.

      • Laura says:

        Older man younger woman is my favorite — there aren’t enough of them. A very steamy (ie erotica) older woman younger man romance is Liberating Lacey by Anne Calhoun. I liked it but the last person I recommended it to told me there was too much sex

    • Laura says:

      Absolutely! I just need to Taylor to grow up a little.

  125. Janet says:

    Laura, I wondered how authors feel writing such wrenching intense scenes and now I know. I mean my heart was pounding when I read that brutal scene not know what will happen on the next page so I can’t imagine you knowing the outcome and having to type those words out. Lord! This latest argument scene makes me wonder, will you have more “birthday” type or surprises for us? Omg! Also which book do you think you will publish next?

    • Laura says:

      Janet, I hope I don’t have any scenes as brutal as the birthday one in the sequel. And BTW I didn’t know where that scene was going as I wrote it — it just slowly unfolded (of course during the rewrite I added/subtracted details). At this point, unless something strange happens (like a story comes to me and I have to stop everything and write it) I think the sequel will be next. It’s consuming too many of my thoughts — I need to finish the story.

  126. Tracie says:

    By then,Tony ‘s twins would be teenagers. Love the thought! Dad and brother being all Alpha over the Prossi girls.

  127. Janet says:

    I read liberating Lacey! I didn’t think there was too much sex but yes when there is it is boring and I tend to skim. As much as I loved fifty shades and Sylvia Days’s crossfire series both had way too much sex and I skimmed many of them😱.

  128. Laura says:

    Lina, Logan, Liam — I love Liam but I may have to change his name. It’s getting very confusing!

  129. janet says:

    God bless you Tracie. You make me laugh everyday. As far as the name goes if Laura named it “the Baby” we will still think it’s the best name ever. It sounds like Liam is a name Phil chose though? Lina, Logan, and now Liam? Doesn’t matter thought bc we will take anything except Ryan like Tracie mentioned. If you are consumed Laura we as readers are obsessed and I hate both emotions. I know for me it’s because I don’t have closure for this couple yet. As far as another surprise scene, I honestly don’t put it past Kim. She’s the type who will use any ammunition to hurt Lina and won’t think twice before using it. Sorry everyone!

  130. Tracie says:

    Thank you Janet, I too wait to hear from you each day! I’m so vested in this couples happiness and survival I can barely stand it. Just the anticipation of the book gives me anxiety, I can’t imagine Laura’s emotion meter writing it! I know the sequel will pull out all our emotions. We have to live the affair again through Phil’s eyes, which will Spin us up, but give us the closure we meed. Finally, the vacation house mystery will be solved! I know Kim’s going down and Lina and Phil will survive, that keeps me centered! Lol

  131. Tracie says:

    Janet I worry about Kim going CRazOI onLogan and Lina the most? I bet in her warped mind she thinks her and the baby could replace them! You think? Logan is one of my favorite characters in the book he has such a sweet spirit. They will all accept the baby but it will be hard! Do you think Kim thoughtPhil would marry her, hire a nanny and then they. Flutter around town like a bunch of butterflies ! She didn’t know much about Phil then.

  132. Tracie says:

    Hi Janet. Here is my think question for the day……do you think Kim would try to hurt Lina by trying to humiliate or hurt Logan in someway? Kim is so self absorbed and selfish? I could honestly see her thinking she and Liam could replace Lina and Logan in Phil’s life! Boy talk about Phil going ballistic……humiliate or hurt one of his kids,..talk about feral alpha dad!

    Laura will Phil and Lina dance again? I ask because they fell in love across a dance floor, but the picture of him and Kim may have ruined that too! I hope not…..

  133. Tracie says:

    Janet that should of been a comma not a question mark after self absorbed and selfish…..I’m well aware of that answer LOL

  134. Janet says:

    Hi Tracie. I too love Logan the most and I really like Adele(she’s the perfect supporting character). Regarding Kim, I never thought she would directly hurt Logan but I did think by going after Lina, Logan of course will be affected by it. I don’t think she sees the kids as her threat. More like get rid of the wife and the rest will go her way. Hmmm. Like Laura said Kim has guys falling over themselves to get to her so I’m sure she thought the baby would cement her relationship with Phil. In her head she truly loves Phil and he’s her endgame so imagine when Phil rejected her. We saw how scary she was when she wanted to break up the family so we haven’t seen her at her worst( the 1.5 mile away home purchase alone made me gasp!). Can’t wait to see her suffer since Laura said it’s too easy to kill her off. Lol!! The nanny theory is a good one. Sooo her…

    • Laura says:

      Janet’s right. The only person Kim wants to hurt is Lina and that’s because she’s married to the man she wants! Actually, it isn’t even that she wants to hurt her — she just wants her to get out of the way, so she can have Phil.

  135. Tracie says:

    Janet, I guess I’ve watched way to much Lifetime…..that channel is like a haven for mentally deranged women…..I can’t wait to learn about her extended family that will tell us a lot about her persona (other than what we already know). I have a feeling that 1.5 miles will seem even shorter when it’s all said and done. I bet there is a permanent dent in some wall where Phil has been banging his head, thinking what have I done!!!! Lol

    • Tracie says:

      Laura, I like that Lina didn’t let Kim see her sweat in the edited out wedding hall scene! Lina was so smart in holding it together and not letting Phil go rip her a part. Kim strikes me as the type if she smells any weakness in Lina she will zero in like a trained snipper.

      • Laura says:

        Lina has way too much pride for that. She’s tougher than people realize (of course that’s probably my fault haha)

    • Laura says:

      LOL Definitely not mentally deranged, just completely narcistic — narcistic people don’t make the best parents either!

  136. Tracie says:

    Laura so true on the parent analogy! My mom use to say it takes more to be a mom than just carrying a baby for 9 months, it takes having a loving heart because that’s where you carry them for a lifetime. That’s why I feel Lina’s parental influence will be so important in Liam’s life. I can’t wait to read what Liam calls her. I read Unsticky (throughly enjoyed it) and it had a reference similar to what my grandpa use to say to me “Pretty is as Pretty does.” That is where Kim fails miserably and Lina excels!!

    • Laura says:

      Oh, I love that and how true. I’ve never heard that expression (your mom’s). So happy you liked Unsticky — I loved her wit! And what Liam calls her — I won’t tell you, but it’s actually kind of funny. Nick appeared in a scene today. I wasn’t sure if he’d come around or not, but the boys do go to the same school!

  137. Tracie says:

    Thanks Laura my mom was an awesome lady. I wondered if there would be a scene with Nick and how all three of them would interact together in the sequel. I’m sure with Phil’s POV it will be interesting. In Chapter 47, when Phil wrapped Lina up outside the restaurant, Lina had said she dragged her gaze from Nick to look at Dana, but could still feel Nicks eyes on her! Wow, I bet Phil was so jealous. I would of loved to have his POV at the moment! Can’t wait to hear what Liam calls her!!

  138. Tracie says:

    One more thought, I’m wondering if Logan is going to be a little jealous of Lina having a relationship with Liam?

  139. Janet says:

    Good morning ladies- I have missed you guys this week! Laura, I’m wondering if you wrote any big scene this week? Also, I thought of more questions for you (Yikes). Here goes… How often did Phil and Kim travel to New York? I know the affair started and ended in NY but did Phil only take Kim? If so, was it intentional in the beginning? I ask because it sounded like she was a newbie lawyer and why would Phil choose her over a more experienced associate? Also they were pretty handsy with each other and I can’t see Phil doing that if they were there with others from his firm. I know she was pursuing him since she joined the firm, did anything happen during the holiday party? The way Phil told Lina she may have met her at the party made me think. And lastly, when did Kim first tell Phil she loved him? I’m guessing it was after she revealed her pregnancy otherwise Phil would have ended things sooner. Ok. Have a wonderful weekend!!

    • Laura says:

      And here I thought I’d answered all your questions LOL. No, nothing happened at the Christmas party. Kim was not the only associate traveling with him to New York. Once the affair started he did intentionally choose her to go with him (not the first time). This is how Wayne figured it out. An affair in the office place would be hard to hide. She didn’t tell him she loved him until after he ended the relationship

  140. Tracie says:

    Hi Girls….work has been crazy this week, but have missed our interactions. I had a situation this week where I had a calendar conflict with two meetings at the same time. I’m a detail/relation type person and this conflict made me think of Chapter 22 (text messages). Phil was a senior partner and his first meeting didn’t start until 10:00, how did Kim (as an associate) get to take two hour lunches with him and show up on his schedule? We know in Chapter 2, Lina says there is 75 (think that was the number???) associates in the office, so I assume they all worked with the senior partners????? How did Wayne find out about the affair? Have a great day girls….

    • Laura says:

      I’m not an attorney but have them in the family. It’s all about the billable hours. I’m guessing Kim had to work some evenings and weekends to make up for all the breaks she took with Phil. Phil’s secretary would have to know what he was up to — no way of keeping it from her.

  141. Tracie says:

    Janet, I’m talking Kindred Spirits….as soon as my comment posted, I saw you had posted too! LOL

  142. Janet says:

    Omg I’m laughing. I too was busy this week and couldn’t post. Got on the blog last night but didn’t see that you or Laura posted anything this week so started unsticky but couldn’t get past a few pages- was so tired. Glad to see us back and flooding our favorite writer with our crazy questions!!

  143. Tracie says:

    Me too….Laura is probably thinking she’s right in the middle of Poltergeist…”They’re Back”…LOL…..If Laura tells us, that my Phil noticed Kim at the Christmas Party, it is going to spin me up!!!!!

  144. Janet says:

    Tracie, the “narcissist” pursued Phil from the getgo. I think he noticed her but didn’t do anything. Sounds like women flock around him all the time but he doesn’t act upon them. Argggggghhh. I hope he didn’t notice Kim.

    • Laura says:

      He didn’t notice her until he noticed her LOL You’ll understand what that means when the sequel come out.

  145. Tracie says:

    Janet, I’m hoping he was toward Kim, like he was to the woman at the Lacrosse Field in Chapter 47, nice but not flirty. I wonder if she sized up Lina at the Christmas Party or if she researched her prior to making her play for Phil? If Kim joined the running club to be close to Phil????, it would only make since that she researched his family. Phil might not have known at the time that Kim was going in for the kill, by she sure did!!!!

  146. Tracie says:

    Janet in your favorite Chapter 15, Phil went from “How could you not have known (talking about when she got pregnant)….. to “this isn’t about Lina.” First of all, what do you think she said about Lina? Because that takes me back to Chapter 8, where Phil tells Lina “we fought…I went down to the bar, she was there..I talked…she listened.” Now what did he talk about…did he tell her personal information about Lina and that he had a strained marriage? Did he discuss Katie’s problems with Kim? Because if I were Lina, and he did discuss me and my children with her, that would make me feel even more violated by his betrayal. Laura feel free to jump in here at anytime…LOL.

    • Laura says:

      Interesting and most of this will be answered in the sequel. As far as what Kim said about Lina on the phone call — she was just trying to talk about her — find out what she was thinking about the pregnancy.

  147. Janet says:

    I wondered about the conversation too. I think she could have said if it wasn’t for Lina, Phil would marry Kim? Not sure. It’s not clear to me. Also, I don’t think he would have told Kim the depth of Katie’s troubles but with a few drinks in him he could have overshared some of the problems they were having including how distant Lina is towards him. Ugh. I just don’t know Tracie. I know all will be answered in a few months but December can’t come soon enough. And we agree about the joining running group theory. We wait and see if we got anything right.

  148. Tracie says:

    Did you ever wonder who the guy was (in the bar) that Phil was conversing with in the picture?

  149. Janet says:

    Yes of course I wondered. I thought like you, who is this guy talking to Phil, who is taking the pictures, and why take these shots if not to use against Phil? And I remember the matching black color tops they wore, basically every detail Laura describes in the book. Again, like you, I dissected this book and I bet we can recite dialogues at this point.

  150. Janet says:

    Thanks Laura! I hope I don’t come up with more questions next week. I thought you answered them all too! Tracie. Sequel, sequel, sequel. All our answers are there. Ok. Till next time.

  151. Laura says:

    And yes, Janet, I’ve written quite a bit in the past week. It’s Christmas time again in the Hunter household — fun to see them all together — I’m not a huge fan of Megan but I’m working on her LOL. A holiday party for Phil’s office and my favorite — writing scenes with Liam!

  152. Tracie says:

    Speaking of reciting dialogue, Chapter 29..where Nick tells Phil “for the record, I am not sleeping with your wife. She is an emotional wreck and I would not take advantage of that.” Chapter 30, when Lina ask Phil “Did you see the pictures?” Phil is cold with his answer “Yes, I saw the pictures.” Laura I know Phil is devastated by Lina choosing Nick that night, his hand is broken and he’s furious. However, when he enters their bathroom for the first time, seeing the roses in the toilet and the pictures…did he get out of his own head for just a minute, to think about how devastating those pictures were for Lina? I can see why he answered her question the next day the way he did, because of his personality and he had wondered all night, if she was having sex with Nick. But for one moment in time, I wanted him to feel her deep-rooted gnaw of betrayal for what he saw in that bathroom and an overwhelming disdain for Kim, because of what she destroyed. Talk about anxiety…phew….I may need dental work from gritting my teeth.

  153. Tracie says:

    Laura, if it’s Christmas time, that means Liam’s BD is right there too!!! Can’t wait to see how that works out. Megan is such a daddy’s girl, I’m wondering about her and Liam too????

    P.S. I wish it was Christmas time at my house, then I’d be reading the sequel…..LOL

    • Tracie says:

      Janet…you know there will be another question and a next time. Between now and the time the sequel is released, we’ll both have ulcers and sipping Mylanta through a silly straw!!!! I’m just saying…LOL

  154. janet says:

    You are too too funny. Mylanta through a silly straw! I forgot about Liam’s birthday!! Good catch. And I wondered about that exact same moment on chapter 30. I’m thinking thousands of other readers did too. I felt Lina’s pain and was so angry because I never sensed true remorse in Phil(obviously because no Phil’s POV). I think Laura said we would also see this in the sequel. I have to keep repeating this mantra. Sequel. Sequel. I hope he felt shame. Doing it because he wasn’t thinking is one thing. Seeing the evidence in front of his eyes and knowing his wife saw it is another. Gawd. Now I have anxiety again. I need to go back to real life for a bit.

    • Laura says:

      I’m getting anxiety thinking about it too. Yes, he felt true remorse. I’ll make sure the reader feels it.

  155. Linda says:

    Hi, me too need Phil’s point of view specially in chapter 30 and 39 when he accused Lina about feeling guilty!!! He went to the church with the kids and I wonder if he lose hope?

    • Laura says:

      Hi Linda — Good point. I think it would be very interesting to see what he was thinking as he sat in church that day. I believe I told Janet or Tracie that after I finish the sequel, I’ll add a few scenes to the original book from Phil’s POV to bring readers closure.

  156. Tracie says:

    Can you imagine what he was thinking in Chapter 4, when the homily was on the sanctity of marriage and the importance of fidelity. When he took Lina’s hand, I bet his heart broke, knowing how he had betrayed her.

  157. Tracie says:

    Hi Laura, i know the words question, thought or wonder may be giving you the hives by now. when you see my posts….sooo…I was thinking about Phil when he received the text from Lina, where she told him he ruined their lives. I know he was at work, but not knowing why the message was sent, nor could he get a hold of Lina, what was he thinking? I even wondered if he might of tried to call Kim, before he tracked Lina to Nicks. I ruled that option out since Lina had to tell Phil about Steamboat,. Just thinking about his panic gives me the shivers! Thank you for putting up with me. Have a great day!

    • Laura says:

      I love the questions! They make me think! Phil felt shock when he read the text. Then he started to sweat. He couldn’t get Lina so he called Katie. Got the weird message about her going to the beach — had Wayne call Diane to see if she knew where Lina was. She didn’t know, so he called Adele. When she didn’t know anything he tracked her phone. He knew immediately where she was. From that point he was on a mission. He drove to Nick’s and well you know the rest.

  158. Tracie says:

    Oh my goodness reading your words absolutely made my heart feel like thundering hooves. I can just feel his panic….I know a lot of readers are waiting on the sequel for Phil’s redemption, but knowing his remorse and his answer to Lina question in chapter 47, “how did we get here? In my eyes, he is already redeemed! He showed how he was a class act hero when he took 100 percent of the blame! Awesome Laura, just awesome!

  159. Tracie says:

    Will we get to see Phil in lawyer work mode in the seque, like we got to see Tony and Joseph? That was smoking hot…when they working those scales of justice….Lol

    • Laura says:

      LOL I was thinking about that too. I’m not sure yet. I have written a couple of scene in his office, but with no specifics about work.

  160. Liana says:

    Wow! I love reading the convo here! Talking about how the affair started in the first place (because of Katie’s condition), does Katie find out and feeling guilty because of their parents’ problem? Which made her try to be a better daughter (of course with the good influence of her boyfriend) and Lina’s supporter. I was thinking that in the effort to continue to drive a wedge between Lina and Phil, Kim will use all the kids as her amo: make Katie act out again, try to get Megan on her side, exploit Logan’s insecurities in making Phil proud etc. And I want all the kids to defend Lina and confront Kim as one unit. I’d really like Phil to file for restraining order on Kim from his family.. because Kim is just the type to not give up and use whatever means there is including his children with Lina..

    • Laura says:

      Good point about Katie — I think in the first book (unless it was edited out) Megan blames Katie for their parent’s fighting after the scene on the deck when Lina gets upset with Phil and has to call Adele. In answer to the question about Katie blaming herself — I don’t think she would allow herself to take the blame. I hope the Hunter children get closer over this and confronting Kim or at least having to meet her will have to happen in the sequel.

  161. janet says:

    I treasure Laura’s answers to our incessant what happened here and what did Phil think there questions. It’s necessary for my peace of mind until the sequel comes out. Waaahh. I had wondered about Tracie’s post on what was going through Phil’s head when Lina sent the ruined life text and now I have a glimpse of it. I also wonder what he was thinking when he found Lina in the hot tub barely alert and the feelings that tore through him when she cried out oh God(when she actually had Nick on her mind). I almost wish Laura had written Phil calling the paramedics and Lina being admitted to the hospital for dehydration because I wanted him to feel the pain, panic, and feel truly scared that he could lose the love of his life because of his affair. As much as I want Kim to be destroyed in the sequel, I also need Phil to go through the wringer for the pain he caused Lina. He is the true culprit to me because he alone has the power to hurt her! I know Phil will suffer from Kim’s actions from the scenarios Laura has generously revealed to us so far but I don’t think he will be truly redeemed until we see him go through the full gamut of painful emotions. Once we see how he was with Kim during the affair as well as after the affair, I will be able to understand more and ultimately forgive Phil. I like Phil(I really do) because I know he belongs with Lina but I need to know he deserves her in the end.

  162. Tracie says:

    Good morning girls, I too love all the answers we receive from Laura, it helps me to understand our couple and their situation much better. I admire Phil for taking 100% of the blame for his actions on more than one occasion, even though I know he was 100% to blame. I lot of people in the same situation, wouldn’t have that much integrity. I know Phil will be knocked down a peg as Laura has stated in another comment, I feel his pain as well as Lina’s. Kim on the other hand, I have a deep feeling she should dress for cold weather. Jack Frost isn’t going to have anything on Phil Hunter. I hope we get to see Phil in full COURT press, during the sequel.

    Janet…My think question for you today? LOL Think about Diane and her decision to back Phil. I remember her saying in Chapter 1, her and Wayne were still in love, like Phil and Lina. Also, her pro Phil attitude at the get go, more his friend than Lina’s. I wonder if sometime in Diane and Wayne’s marriage, there wasn’t an infidelity issue???? The matching black shirts in the picture(this is the reason I’m not an author), they could of been in a bar/bowling alley, they ran together why not bowl together??!!!? LOL

    Liana…Love the thought on Katy and the stress her illness caused on their marriage, will she know??? I just don’t think Phil or Lina would put that much pressure or guilt on one of their children (my opinion only). Nor would Phil or Lina allow Kim to be alone with their children. I thought Logan might be a target, but Laura and Janet set me straight on that situation, being Kim just wants Lina out of the way. She is so selfish she thinks she can keep Phil’s attention with her looks and sexual prowess, since Phil put her first for four months over his wife and children, she thinks she’s got this, especially with Liam to support her cause. I don’t think Phil and Lina’s children are a concern to her, just getting and keeping Phil. However, I have satisfaction in knowing Kim will be sadly mistaken.

    Laura..I have a question regarding the pre-dance pictures???? What was Phil frame of mind when he received Lina’s text about going? His thoughts when she leaned into his touch and allowed him to rub her arms at the party??? When Lina found out about Liam, I found myself feeling so much sadness for her. Knowing that for the first time since she was 15, she wasn’t sharing something or someone with Phil, she was standing on the outside of his life looking in….wow talk about feeling dejected. But then I felt that for Phil too, when Logan wouldn’t answer his phone in Chapter 32, when Lina told him she had spent hours around Matt in Chapter 42, he was in the same boat as Lina, standing on the outside of his and Lina’s life looking in for the first time.

    Have a good day girls!!!!!

    • Laura says:

      When Phil received the text from Lina about the pre-dance party it further confirmed what he believed after she kissed him at the lacrosse game –her walls of resistance were crumbling. He hoped it was only a matter of time before they were back together.
      And yes, Lina was devastated and I believe that’s the hardest part for her (besides the betrayal), knowing he shares something with another woman.

  163. Tracie says:

    Laura I just read your comment back to Liana, regarding the kids having to meet or confront Kim in the sequel….I just had a thought….please please please… if you write a scene about Liam’s BD, don’t let there be any Mommy (puke) and daddy pictures, with Lina and her children looking on…Sick, gross, and nasty…whew….I spun my own self up!!!! Anxiety overload…..

  164. Janet says:

    Bahaha. I wanna see him 😭 and Kim in Mars possibly. Tracie, I think they were at a bar. Please no more activities together. That would give me more anxiety. The dancing was enough for me. Bowling suggests a relationship no? I don’t like that you said Phil put Kim first for 4 months. You are right and that’s why I want to see him suffer. I’m still smarting from the fact that he wore pink for her when he wouldn’t for Lina. Seems like he was in a haze of lust for 4 months and damm the consequences(his mentor Wayne’s warnings, being seen in baltimore on weekends , etc)Ugh. Regarding Diane and Wayne, they were never really in my radar throughout the book other than being there to support this couple so I didn’t pay too much attention.

    • Laura says:

      Just to be clear girls — Phil never put Kim first. Phil put Phil first. And the dancing was enough for me too! LOL

      • Veronica says:

        I agree he seemed selfish. But the running club, keeping her gift, leaving Lina alone for nights and leaving to get a fix of Kim before work, is that not putting her before his family? He still took time and memories away from his family which is massive?

        • Laura says:

          I agree. He was putting himself before his family. Anyone who has an affair is hurting their family. You can’t rationalize that fact away. Some people (and readers) can’t forgive it — no matter what. I don’t even think I could, personally, but I wanted this couple to make it. I didn’t know that in the beginning, but it slowly evolved that way for me.

          • Veronica says:

            Thank you! That makes perfect sense! I love that you are so honest and don’t try and excuse all Phil’s actions! You write the reactions and emotions of the characters so well!

  165. Linda says:

    Hi girls, I understand Janet!!! I need too a big gesture from Phil. Lina suffered too much, yes I want see him cry… LOL
    Laura in the new book they will try couple therapy?

    • Laura says:

      I agree Lina suffered enough in the first book! I’m trying to keep her suffering to a minimal level in this one. I’m not sure about the therapy yet — Phil is anti psychiatrist/psychologist at the moment.

  166. janet says:

    So true Laura! Schooled! Phil put Phil first. That makes me feel better. Lol

    • Tracie says:

      That would be officially schooled…Phil did put Phil first (sorry)….that just gives more credence to what my mama always use to say…”Men are simple babe, nine times out of 10, they are controlled by something that can’t even walk or talk!!!!” LOL!!!

  167. Janet says:

    Hi Linda. Not sure if counseling is necessary for this couple because Phil knows exactly what he did wrong and won’t make that kind of mistake ever again. He promised himself and Lina he will put her first and will cherish her. I think if they do go to counseling it will be more for the details of the affair to come out but then that can be done outside of therapy? So far Lina hasn’t really asked Phil many questions other than how did it start and why? It hurt her too much to know more than that. Hope that changes. Kim isn’t done with her mission so she will come at Lina full force but Lina is stronger and more independent now. Her mental strength can be her defense. If anything it’ll be Phil who will suffer more(yes I had to stress that again) Anything that affects Lina will surely hit Phil harder.

  168. Tracie says:

    Since Nick and Lina began their friendship during Katie’s counseling, I doubt Phil would ever trust another one. LOL…You girls may pounce on me for this, but I don’t need a grand gesture from Phil! I need to see the Phil that Lina mentions in the book, the version of him she wanted back, prior to his betrayal! I know there will be new dynamics and changes to their relationship, but I know he’ll come through….

  169. Tracie says:

    I just had to add one more thought to my last comment. My opinion only, I don’t think there can be one big gesture on Phil’s part (crossed to many lines) to regain the connection and security that Lina deserves. I think Laura will show us throughout the entire sequel how that connection/security is re-established for them, not only as a couple, but their entire family. Phil’s handling of Kim (which I hope is brutal) and through his actions in giving Lina the love, intimacy, loyalty and security that she deserves (to me) would be considered the grand gesture needed. Laura you know I have a tendency to be an outfielder, please pull me in, if I’m too far out.LOL. But yes girls, I do want to see Kim suffer for her part in Lina’s pain, and I know she will (can’t wait). Laura said in one comment, that Phil will suffer because he made his life to complicated; however, could his face track a few tears (of course)…But I trust Laura to deliver, so write on sister, can’t wait to read your work of art……

  170. janet says:

    Hi Tracie, When I say I want to see Phil suffer and be miserable, I really just meant that.
    Sorry Laura! Knowing his character, I don’t think it’s in him to grovel and to me not as important. Like Liana I would like to see him confront(or shred as I would prefer) Kim and defend Lina which we now know we will get in the sequel. James Spader in Pretty in Pink said it best-“She was, is, and always be a nada”. I want him to convey this message roaringly (as he is wont to do) clear to not just Kim but to us as well.
    Until next time, I will be chanting my sequel, sequel mantra. Lord.

    • Laura says:

      I don’t see him groveling either — I don’t know if it’s too much pride or just not in his DNA. Crying is pushing his boundaries too, but when he thought he’d lost Lina for good, I know a few escaped.

      • Veronica says:

        I hope he does grovel a bit though, need to see him truely humbled to me! Pride does not count when winning back your soulmate! Think Lina needs reassurance!

  171. Tracie says:

    I love that Janet…..you rock my Kindred Spirit!

  172. Janet says:

    😘. Hope others won’t be too angry with me for the grovel comment. I was prioritizing…

  173. Tracie says:

    Hahahaha….You are precious….😂

  174. Veronica says:

    I am so excited about the ‘White Picket Fence’ sexual! Have so many questions! And unfortunately at this moment I kind of hate Phil and don’t know why Lina forgave him! Sorry was not good enough! Need to seem him work for it and underhand his thoughts! I completely get that he did not love her or call her pet names. But it also was more than just sex if he took her to Steambot, went dancing with her and had pictures together as if they were a couple, and he went running club with her? Seriously most people don’t take up a hobby if it’s just a fling! So need all this explained! Also need to be reassured he has not touched Kim since he split with Lina as he has been alone for months! Cannot wait! Also, a few more people being less forgive Phil and being more understanding of Lina would help! Particularly Megan who I found to be quite harsh and selfish! Your books are amazing though and cannot wait for the next instalment!

    • Laura says:

      Hi Veronica! Thanks for the comment. It wasn’t just sex, but in my mind it was just a fling. I can tell you with certainty that Phil never knew those pictures were being taken. As far as the running group — that will be resolved in the sequel. The worst thing he did and it will probably remain unforgiveable to some readers is take her to Steamboat. I know what’s in his head and hope to portray it to readers in the sequel–true remorse. You’ll also have answers to your other questions. Megan was awful to me too. I’m working on her LOL

      • Veronica says:

        Thank you so much for answering! That makes sense! Ha h I’m glad you agree about Meg! Cannot wait for answers! Steamboat is a big one, and probably the worst thing he did! I hope he redeeems himself because at the moment I am team Nick! But I know you will win me over!

        • Laura says:

          LOL I’ll try but I may not be able to. They are completely different men. Nick is more mature in a lot of ways. Phil is more the caveman type. Nick will have some scenes in the sequel

    • Tracie says:

      Good Morning Girls, I think groveling would also take away from his dominate/alpha WOW factor, which absolutely can not happen. I have a feeling we will see just how much Phil suffers (his own remorse) through his POV. Also, Lina doesn’t want to see Phil hurt or suffer, she loves him. Even in the brutal Chapter 30, she worried about Phil and after his hand surgery, she admonished herself for not being there for him. Remember what he told Lina in Chapter 47, “Not back, baby, forward.” That’s where we have to go too!!!! Have a good day girls….Thank you Laura….

  175. janet says:

    Laura, I’m on a loop repeat at this point but if you can tell us without giving away too much- did the steamboat happen during spring break? I was hoping Phil was alone?

  176. Tracie says:

    Janet, remember in Chapter 29, where Lina told Nick that Phil had cancelled Spring Break for a conference…aka Steamboat. They were suppose to go to his parents house in Florida. That would of also been Megan’s last Spring Break prior to her going to college.

  177. Janet says:

    Yes Tracie. That’s why I’m asking. I thought maybe it’s not as it seems and steamboat happened another time. Or
    that she followed him…. dang it

    • Laura says:

      He absolutely did not go to steamboat instead of on a vacation with his family. Lina initially believed that – she put two and two together, but her assumption was wrong. I really wish the scene clarifying that point hadn’t been edited out. Ugh

  178. janet says:

    Yes!!!! I knew it. Even when I was reading it didn’t feel right. I read on hoping lina would dig deeper into this but she never did. Ok point 10 for Phil. You guys, there’s more to the steamboat mystery other than Phil’s remorse. I can hope!

  179. Tracie says:

    I’m so happy you clarified that Laura. Oh my…that is why I thought he put Kim first over his family. Ugh is right on the edited out scene. The way Lina presented it to Nick, that was the only assumption the reader (maybe just me) could get was that he went with her to Steamboat instead of Florida with his family. It also made me sick thinking he could of got Kim pregnant at Steamboat, based on Liam being born in December…just the thought gave me the shivers (ewwww).

    • Laura says:

      I think what Lina told Nick was that Phil had cancelled their family vacation because he’d been too busy but had time to take Kim to Steamboat (not necessarily the same week). Anyway, more clarification was needed.

  180. Tracie says:

    Whew…I’m just glad Janet asked and you clarified….feel even better about my Phil now….

  181. Janet says:

    Oh my is right Tracie. I think we all thought that. When I was going back and forth to reread parts I remember thinking this was never verified. I too did calculations and the witch lied. When she and Phil were on he phone Lina said she must have gotten pregnant the first month they got together. However, if it happened in March an abortion would have been feasible in May. ughhh

  182. Tracie says:

    Janet, I too went back and forth reading. The only thing that calmed my nerves about her getting pregnant at Steamboat, was that the text messages started 18 March and went through 5 April and they met at her apartment. Liam was born 23 December. So I’m hoping she had a perfectly timed pregnancy, from start to finish.

  183. Janet says:

    Ok right! I remember thinking most kids have spring break in March. My kids have it in April but remember thinking the times don’t match regardless for steamboat. When there’s a lull in the texts it’s because they are in the City together for the case. Or..maybe wasn’t salacious enough for Kim to send to Lina.

  184. Tracie says:

    Yes there was a lull…from 24 March to 5 April. But there was 24 text messages in all and we only saw a few. This is the part where we have to start our sequel chant….

  185. Janet says:

    Sequel, sequel. Hmmm. Not helping right now. One last thing. Didn’t lina say Phil called her every night when he was away? Maybe it was every(day) bc imagine him calling her while Kim is in the bathroom or nearby. Mad that they even stayed in the same room when traveling.

  186. Tracie says:

    Laura, Now I’m wondering about the pink tie??? Did we assume too much there as well??? If we didn’t (drum roll), what happened to it? I’m hoping a ceremonial burning by Lina!!! Did Kim buy anything else for Phil?

  187. Tracie says:

    Janet, on the same room scenario…if Phil was being discreet, they would have charged two rooms to the law firms account. I’m sure they would have had to do some type of travel documents, for accounting purposes. I bet he called, even though he was thinking of himself, he still would of wanted to check on Lina and the kids.

    • Laura says:

      Phil always had his own room. He just ended up in her room or vice versa. He was discreet. Gosh, I hate even thinking about that time LOL. I’m currently writing a flashback scene to Liam’s birth. Kind of hard — Phil and Kim in the same room with a newborn ugh again

  188. Tracie says:

    I don’t think Phil would of made Kim privy to his conversations with his family. That is why I wondered what Phil meant when he told Lina…”I talked and she listened.”

  189. Janet says:

    Ok regarding separate rooms. I just meant one room was used sorely for changing clothes the next day and why he wanted to spend the night with her after sex. Lord!
    I didn’t know they were in the same room after birth! He wasn’t present during birth was he? I think you told us he was not few weeks ago when I started hounding you. Can’t wait to see that interaction. Cannot wait. I still remember the flashback scene when Logan was born. My chest hurts Laura!!

  190. Tracie says:

    Laura, please please let me see some remorse in the flash back scene. Him thinking about Lina and his love for her…give me something. I can’t imagine writing it….I’m hunting around my office now for a paper bag to breath in….Geez…

    • Laura says:

      Think how hard it is to write. As much as he hates Kim, he can’t be mean to a woman who just gave birth. And in answer to Janet, no he isn’t there for the birth.

      • Tracie says:

        I agree he can’t be mean (but not hugging or anything) and you answered my question about being loving and sweet. So I’m waiting…I just can’t wait to see how he handled Kim after the birth of Liam until he was back with Lina…I can’t imagine his thoughts on how he was going to get his family back and incorporate Liam. I also don’t think of Phil as juggling two families, I saw that in a review somewhere. He has ONE family and Liam is a part of that family!!! Kim is NADA!!!!

      • Veronica says:

        Really? I wouldn’t mind seeing him mean no matter what! When someone is so vicious I think they deserve no sympathy! Like the scene in a book I read ‘That Thing Between Eli and Gwen’ where he lets his ex know her place and defends his girlfriend. I know he does not need to be nasty but being blunt would make sense, he had no problems being harsh with Lina when she did not deserve it. Kim needs to be told! Sorry I just really dislike her, and don’t want Phil being soft with her! He has a lot to make up!

        • Janet says:

          I would love to see Phil being mean to Kim every single day. Why does he need to be polite? Not because of Liam. He’s the father. At the very least he would get joint custody. I don’t even think Phil’s mom Susan needs to meet Kim. She can dote on Liam when the baby is with Phil and Lina. This homewrecker does not need civility from the Hunters!

  191. Tracie says:

    Oh thank you….I just read your 11:29 comment Laura…This is one of those scenes, I hope he remembers how precious and awesome Lina is as both a person and mother!!!!

  192. Janet says:

    Omg Can he be cold and remote then? Minimum contact and minimL word usage with this vessel who carried his son? None of this thank you for my son and are you feeling well BS! Gawd!!! You are killing me here. Tracie is breathing in through a brown bag and I just declined my husbands call.

  193. Tracie says:

    Janet read up to my 11:48 comment (I sometimes forget to scroll up)…we are on the same wavelength. Also my husband asked…”How can this woman finish the sequel, if you and your Kindred Spirit keep her answering your questions?” I said “You just answered your own question…Woman=Female=Multitasker….LOL…

    • Liana says:

      I would like to think of us as a creative brainstorming group hahahaha…

      Laura.. thank you for putting up with the questions!

  194. Janet says:

    Holy moly cannoli!! Oh my husband thinks I’ve lost it. It’s really out of character for me to engage in any blog or social media other than Pinterest. Lol. He told me to leave Laura alone when I started posting comments and I promised myself I would but that was then. Now this is me limiting myself. Sorry!! Also what does Liana and Linda think of today’s reveal?

  195. Tracie says:

    I don’t do social media either, seems like to much work, but I found this blog and now its like an addiction to check and see what has been posted…..my kids make fun of me too. I just told them when they could vote…then their opinion would matter…LOL

  196. Tracie says:

    Laura, I think we are all concentrating on what matters…your writing and your blog!!! However, when you are dropping a tidbit like the flash back scene…can you start your post with the word WARNING??? That gives the rest of us time to prepare for the unexpected!!! LOL…. But I do love the tidbit drop……

  197. Janet says:

    Laura, you have diehard fans here. Wherever you go with your new books, Tracie and I will follow to the end. 🤗. Tracie, we will invest in a bulk order of paper bags with one day ship option. We will unravel together in December with multiple lunch bags around us. I say let’s send the family away so we can savor each word in peace. Otherwise it’ll be fish nuggets or postmates delivery for a week- it is 1000 pages long right Laura?! 😆

  198. Tracie says:

    That was definitely a hoot and holler post….I told my crew there was enough drive-thru restaurants in town to keep them fed…I’m not even getting up to fix fish nuggets. My husband has a climate controlled shop with a TV and frig, he’ll be fine. Then right before the first word of the sequel appears before my eyes (or any of her books), I’ll remind them as they are rushed to the door, that only me and God know if I took my hormone! LOL

  199. janet says:

    OMG. Me too about hormone! climate controlled shop with TV. Done! bahahaha

  200. Tracie says:

    Janet…one more thing, I remarked on fish nuggets (which I’ve never cooked)…who eats fish nuggets????? Do you mean Fish Sticks, with the old guy in the rain suit on the box???? Fish is suppose to come either fried (like big pieces) or baked/blackened like whole….you are probably eating fungi!!!! LOL

  201. Janet says:

    Lord. I meant those dr Praegar’s fish bites? Fish or chicken nuggets who cares? At least I’m willing to put something inside the toaster oven no? They say before getting a face lift, make sure you have a well stocked fridge for a week. In our case make sure it’s stocked for the sequel.

  202. Tracie says:

    OMG I just busted a gut…..you crack me up!

  203. Tracie says:

    Laura, in Chapter 44, when Lina asked Phil if Kim had had the baby and he hesitated and she said answer me! Was his hesitation because he felt he was gaining some ground with Lina and this would set them back? He was hesitant to tell her about how many times he had seen Liam too! I’m figuring the answer to my first question will cover that one too. Phil took the kids to the beach, his brothers, the hospital to be with Lina, fixed things around the house…he was always free when Lina or the kids needed him. That leads me to think Kim was not pushing Phil since he was separated and she still had a chance of being his one and only??

    • Laura says:

      He knew the answer would upset her. He was in a no win position at that point. When he said he couldn’t regret Liam it was hard for her to hear, but it was honest — Phil wouldn’t be Phil if he regretted his child. Yes, Kim was on her best behavior in those early months assuming Phil would eventually be divorced and free. She was also living an hour away.

  204. Tracie says:

    Laura, that even gives Phil more points in my book! I know in the sequel he’ll put Lina first. Like he said after the wedding slap, there is no choice, never was…..That’s why I love Phil…..Thank you Laura

  205. Tracie says:

    What was Phil’s thoughts when he told Lina that Liam looked a little like Logan and she said I hate you?? When he hung from that call did he think Lina’s walls may never crumble?

  206. janet says:

    Here comes negative Nancy. I perceived the slap scene differently. To me, he was just as worried that Lina caused a scene in front of his colleagues thereby ruining his reputation. The love of your life had to deal with smirks from your mistress all night. All night of goading and how do you keep saying ignore her? Why couldn’t you have cut her down before the slap? Granted he never saw this coming but a few succinct words Phil’s style would have sufficed. He was going to storm into Kim’s room and what? placate her or scream at her? Lina’s response to this was perfect-she was going to leave if he goes to Kim’s room because thats exactly what she wants. Phil’s there was never a choice comment? not so much because it came a little too late.
    Here’s where I love Phil. His convo with Logan. Laura, you conveyed his love for Lina perfectly here in true Phil fashion. Thank you!

    • Laura says:

      Phil was trying to ignore Kim and wanted Lina to do the same. He didn’t want to cause a scene and take anything away from the wedding celebration. Remember he tried to get Lina not to attend the wedding, knowing Kim would be in attendance. He knows Kim’s a loose cannon. After the slap he was both frustrated at Lina for causing a scene and worried that Kim would call the police. He wouldn’t have yelled at Kim at that moment. He would have tried to placate her. He was in damage control mode

      • Veronica says:

        I agree that makes sense, but even being naive did her really think his wife was going to let him attend a wedding along where his ex mistress was? That is just crazy? Why did he not just skip the wedding himself? He doesn’t even want his kids mixing with Nicks, but he thinks he can go to a wedding where Kim is? I just find Phil’s lack of thought so frustrating sometimes! I want to see more thought for Lina from him! I want to see the soul mate link come through!

        • Laura says:

          It was the wedding of one of his associates. It would have been a slap to them not to attend, especially after RSVPing. I think he was very surprised when he found out Kim was attending. Fortunately, or unfortunately, for me, I know a lot more Phil’s than Nick’s ie he’s done with Kim and therefore he knows nothing will happen if he attends the wedding

          • Veronica says:

            I get what you mean that makes sense. Just think he is intelligent enough to realise no one would be ok with that situation. Either go with Lina or not at all. But think things needed to come to a head anyway!

    • Veronica says:

      Completely agree, that was why I thought of this scene! Thanks for explaining Laura!

    • Veronica says:

      Completely agree, that was why I thought of this scene! Thanks for explaining Laura!

  207. Janet says:

    Just a side note- a lot of readers are
    team Nick. He reminds me of Tony! I think he deserves someone who doesn’t have as much baggage as Lina. I see both Lina and Phil as flawed characters who belong together. Nick is pretty much perfect in my eyes and deserve a woman more like Casey imo

    • Laura says:

      Interesting. Tony and Phil are my two favorite male characters. I always put Joseph and Nick in the same category. I’ll have to think about this one.

      • Veronica says:

        Ah that’s interesting! How come you prefer Phil to Nick?

        • Laura says:

          That’s a good question and I probably don’t have a good answer. Most of my friends were surprised that she didn’t end up with Nick — they thought he was more who I would choose. While I was writing the story, I kind of fell in love with Phil LOL. I know it sounds weird and obviously I didn’t convey it enough to the satisfaction of many readers, but he would die for Lina. I felt his remorse. I know it wasn’t exactly healthy but she needed him — remember the phone call when she was having the panic attack? Remember Christmas Eve when she slept walked to his bed? When he knew she was in the hot tub? They were connected. I also liked the idea of a family unit staying together despite his betrayal.

    • Veronica says:

      That actually makes perfect sense! Love for Nick!

  208. Tracie says:

    Here comes the sweet to your salt Janet….Nick was way too laid back to be a Tony. I could never see Nick grabbing one of his clients around the throat and pinning them against a wall and telling them to never mention his women’s name. Nick may have subdued Phil; but Phil threw the first punch… Also, remember when Lina made the comment that Nick’s friends were really to cerebral for her (which would probably mean him too). Think about where Tony went when he needed to brainstorm, he went to Joseph. Plus Nick would never say I only make boy babies..only Tony or Phil(yum-a). I have to put Tony and Phil together as well. That is why in the sequel I need Tony and Casey steam between Phil and Lina. I need a cookie display knocked over….LOL Girls I have this vision of a scene wherein, Phil pulls in his driveway and Kim is at the curb, mouthing Lina…Phil walks to Lina (with a brief case) and gives her one of Laura’s Alpha Male Soft Kisses (swoon) and then turns on Kim. That really is just a play on Tony, Casey and Casey’s sister scene…Loved that scene.

  209. Janet says:

    Ok. Makes perfect sense regarding nick. I thought I saw a quiet intensity rather than laid back but you are right. He’s more cerebral and Tony and Phil are more physical. On another note , thank God Liam looks like Phil and Logan. I don’t know if Lina could come around if she has to see Kim with short hair for the rest of her life!

  210. Tracie says:

    Joseph is more cerebral too…he tore Lia’s ex up by digging up that little fraud tidbit on how he and his wife overcharged on their hours billed. Loved that scene too…. I agree…when Alice made that statement to Lina, I was happy… I’m excited to see how Lina is going to meet Liam for the first time. I bet it will be emotional not only for her, but Phil too. I’m wondering how Logan is going to act in the sequel, where Liam is concerned. I’m wondering is he going to act out, is he going to try to make himself invisible when Liam’s with them, leave the house entirely for the duration of his visit??? Will Liam try to exclude Phil or forget to tell him things about his Lacrosse games or other school activities. Will Phil still take Logan to ball games and play catch with him in the front yard, will he still get the one on one time with Phil??? I even wondered if Logan may screw up somehow and tell his dad, “Well I was weak.” Phil being the dominate male that he is would probably tell Logan…with weakness comes consequences. Logan is such an awesome kid, I’m hoping he becomes an example for his little brother, instead of looking at him as competition.

  211. Tracie says:

    Laura I see the confusion factor now on the Liam..Logan…Lina thing. That would be “Will Logan try to exclude…LOL…. I think my concern for Logan is because anyone (pretty much) can entertain a toddler, but a teenage boy needs his dad’s guidance. It is a crucial time in Logan’s life, and with the Hunter’s new dynamics and past hurts, I just don’t won’t that sweet boy overlooked by the cuteness of Liam. I know the the sequel will blow these questions away, but that still doesn’t mean I’m not scared of the unknown….LOL

  212. janet says:

    You know when people say happy wife happy life? I believe that since it works in my household. LOL. Again it will all fall on Lina and how she sets an example to the family. Logan really has the biggest heart in this family. He will resist and reject Liam at first but Liam will be Logan’s mini me hopefully and Liam’s idol once he gets a little older. They just need time establish the brother bond. having said that if Liam looks like Phil and Logan but has his moms traits then all bets are off and he should just live with Kim in Mars.

  213. Tracie says:

    I bet Liam is going to be a cutie, plus Laura commented writing scenes with Liam was a favorite for her. That was the same comment where she commented about writing the scene at Phil’s office party. Gawd….can you imagine how that is going to go for Lina??? I’m wondering if that is one of the scenes that is going to cause Lina some humiliation. Phil better shut that down. I also wonder if Kim will try to make Phil jealous, by dating other men??? I too believe that Lina will be the hub to make everything work.

  214. Janet says:

    Tracie!! How can Phil be jealous of Kim dating others? Won’t he be relieved? Do you mean Kim may think Phil has feelings for her? Do you believe they shared a connection of sorts for those months they were together? I know she thinks so but you think Phil did too? I’m so confused still where he stood during the affair. I know he loved Lina and didn’t want to leave her but I wonder if it had something more to do with history and loyalty. I need to see how he acted with Kim while the affair was ongoing so I can gauge from his actions. We know he was distant with Lina those months. He barely talked to her and avoided her but I don’t think it was out of guilt. As always my head tingles with rage when we talk about her. I can’t wait for the office scene. It’ll be so good.

  215. Tracie says:

    Not that Phil would BE jealous, that Kim would think it would make him jealous!!! I’m just throwing out scenarios, but not theories. I don’t want to put anything out here that would touch our sequel. No connection, except for their bodies. I’m telling you, he was stress relieving and being selfish, not courting or imagining cake toppers. Lol. I’m just wondering what Evil Kim will do and how…he was distant because Lina was mad at him and kind of cut him off! I’m in a meeting Lol, but I have. Think question th throw at you when I get back to my office Lol

  216. Janet says:

    Ok. 🙏 thank you! I loved the answer.

  217. Tracie says:

    Janet here is my think (a way outfield) question for the day….Laura I know you are going to say “Never” LOL…We know Emily insinuated (she thought)that Phil and Kim were a couple at running group. Lina wondered how they presented themselves (as a couple) as well after the driveway scene. We know Phil never took his wedding ring off…so….How did Phil introduce Kim while they were out and about in New York??? Like to the guy at the bar???? We know Phil didn’t buy her anything and we also know now that the tie was insignificant to Phil until Lina questioned it…so..Did Kim (on her own) wear some type of Cracker Jack ring while in New York??? Phil had a wedding ring on, so I was just wondering???

  218. Tracie says:

    I also want to say, the reason I brought up that Phil thought the tie was insignificant, because if she did have a ring on, he probably wouldn’t have noticed it anyway!!! But since I’m so Pro Phil (love him) I want to add he noticed Lina had hers on in Chapter 47, even ran his finger over it….swoon!!! sigh!!!

  219. Janet says:

    You have the best questions!! I wondered about Emily’s comment too and couldn’t come to a conclusion I was satisfied with. Why did emily think they were more than running buddies? It can’t be just from Phil’s ring. I don’t think people there were running as couples. Was Phil and Kim all over each other?! I can’t see kim wearing a Cracker Jack ring. I just can’t. She’s the type who would want a harry Winston 5 ct flawless to me and wouldn’t demean herself by wearing a fake ring or band. I hope to god it isn’t another snapshot of the bar scene where Phil is grabbing Kim. I’m fine with Kim showing PDA. Hopefully for Phil he really was there for his training.

  220. Tracie says:

    The ring was a way outfield question…I just threw that out there because Phil never took his off. How do you think Phil introduced Kim while in New York (when they were on their own, not doing law firm business)??? He may have not had to introduce her, but I was wondering again about the guy in the picture??? I don’t think Phil would have been all over Kim in the running group environment, especially in Baltimore, to close to home and work!!!! Who knows what she was saying behind Phil’s back to Emily or others in the group about their relationship. That’s a sequel chant…I have no idea on that one…Remember Phil is putting Phil first…he is lust grabbing in New York. Maybe the guy in the picture was a member of their running group they ran into while in New York???

  221. Tracie says:

    I have a but….Lina noted in the driveway scene,that she heard the warning in Phil’s voice, plus Lina felt the tension in Phil..When he said yes this is my wife and my house!!!! Lina schooled him though…on my!!!!! That is why I was wondering about Emily and Kim’s relationship and how close they were. When I was reading the book…I was hoping they were friends, so Emily could tell Kim how jealous/protective and alpha Phil got with Nick over Lina!!!!! I so want Phil to pull Lina into his body like that when Kim is around. Loved the slow kiss he gave Lina at the wedding when the witch was watching. Now would be the time for KIM IS NADA!

  222. Tracie says:

    Did you read my version of a curb scene Lol??

  223. janet says:

    Honest to god you and I need a what if guide to the WPF. So many thoughts and scenarios… Right on Phil puts Phil first. I don’t think he introduced Kim to anyone. If he had to he would just say this is Kim. After Laura set us straight with no pet names and no presents for Kim, I don’t see him calling her anything other than her name. If anything the guy at the bar is someone Kim knows or yes we can go so far as to say part of the running circle? Maybe even just a random guy they met at the bar. For him to put his hands on Kim and for once not be discreet, the guy holds no importance to Phil. Do you think there’s more than meets the eye for this guy? I didn’t think anything of it. I only cared where Phil had his hands and who took that disgusting picture.

  224. janet says:

    oh, just read Laura’s posts and some others I missed this am What are your favorite scenes Laura?

    • Laura says:

      Favorite Scenes
      A White Picket Fence — all scenes with PDA between Phil and Lina. In addition the wedding scene, the Christmas and Christmas eve scene, the driveway scene, the hospital scene when Lina leaves Nick and goes to Phil, and all scenes with Logan
      A Sense of Belonging — The first scene, the cookie scene, the scene in the airport, the scene where Tony confronts his mother, the scene where Tony kisses Casey in front of her sister, the scene when Tony tells Casey he loves her
      When I Saw You — every scene where Ned gets put in his place LOL

  225. Tracie says:

    That made me laugh…..somebody took those dang pictures and that guy might have been the photographer. LOL 😂 they are in New York and away from court, so they were in full lust mode. 🤮

  226. janet says:

    Oooh!!! I will have to reread Tony and Casey. I forgot the first scene! It’s when they meet jogging? Your heroes are epitome of alpha male!! so goooood. Just curious, did you read Linda Howard growing up?

  227. Tracie says:

    Laura I just thought about what you said regarding Ned and how your favorite scenes were when he was put in his place (oh me too) Lol…. Writing Kim to be put in her place will be awesome. Pit two females against each other and it will be an all out war! You against Kim, Phil is your vessel! That will also be a perfect storm! Especially if you channel Janet …LOL.

  228. Janet says:

    Laura giveth and Laura taketh away!! Haaaa

    Will we see Emily or Dana in the sequel? They were not on my radar till Tracie talked about Emily. Wasn’t Emily just a conduit for another “surprise”? Also regarding the driveway scene I loved it too. I couldn’t grasp at first Phil’s comment about why Lina not being able to forgive him for the big mistake but I think I get now why he blurted that out. To Phil, Kim meant nothing so he doesn’t understand why Lina can’t get over it 4 months later. Am I close?
    Ladies, duty calls and gonna check out for the evening. Will check in tomorrow. Hope more fans chime in. Tracies theories are the bomb!!! 😀

    • Laura says:

      Yes. That’s how Phil was thinking. He’s a bit pigheaded. And like I said in another post, there is no way to justify what he did. It was wrong. The question is can Lina forgive him and trust that it won’t happen again. Dana is touched upon in the sequel. I don’t know about Emily yet.

  229. Tracie says:

    Thank you Laura for taking so much time to answer our questions and putting up with our banter. You are very much appreciated.

    • Laura says:

      You’re very welcome Tracie. I think I enjoy the interchange as much as you do. These characters are very much alive in my head.

  230. Tracie says:

    Lina will be able to trust and forgive Phil, I have no doubt in their HEA. Phil said it would be unnatural for Lina not to love him and I wholeheartedly believe that statement. Thank you Laura!

  231. Tracie says:

    I’m anxious to see the arrangement Phil enters into with Kim that will also be a deciding factor. I just don’t ever think Phil would devastate his family again. He waited to long for Lina too take him back! I wonder if Phil has a plan oF just getting Lina back and get settled then moving on Kim about Liam and integrating him in to their family. I bet Phil is going to bust a spring when Kim moves in his neighborhood!

  232. Tracie says:

    Phil has waited to long to get his love back, He’ll have to fight for his families new norm and put his wife first and Kim will have to have set perimeters when it comes to him and his wife.

  233. janet says:

    I’m such a moron! I just saw that you could reply directly to specific posts. Duh! I will have to scroll up and down since many replies were posted days after original comments. Lots to scroll up and down!

    Tracie, Kim moved from an hour away to a mile away to disrupt Phil’s life. This wench needs more than perimeters!

  234. Tracie says:

    You are not a moron!! When I figured out how to use my Keurig I thought I was a genius Lol. I agree about Kim! When I saw Laura’s comment to you last night her words “The question is” kept running through my head, this the reason for 3 similar posts in a row! I was trying to give myself my own warm and fuzzy about Lina and Phil. I know they will have their HEA! That witch has to be dealt with first!

    • Laura says:

      LOL sorry to give you unnecessary stress. I should have capitalized the word LINA in that sentence. The question is can LINA forgive him. My point is that no matter what he does to redeem himself it won’t be enough for some readers. I do think it will be enough for Lina (and Janet), though.

      • Tracie says:

        It will definitely be enough for me I love Phil much! Everyone makes mistakes and yes Phil’s were huge, but if his wife and kids can forgive him than everyone else should too! Just my opinion!

        • Janet says:

          Thank you Laura! Even if I didn’t trust Phil before I Trust you to redeem him. It’s Lina who has to live with him so who am I not to forgive!! As long as Kim gets her just desserts I will be victorious!! And pls let us purchase your deleted material from the first book. If you post it here the server may crash! Holy moly.

          • Laura says:

            Thanks Janet! And I don’t feel like you ask me the same question again and again. LOL and when the time comes I’ll just get your amazon Kindle address and email them directly.

          • Tracie says:

            Get my Kindle book address too! LOL. Lord I sounded like a kid right then LOL

          • janet says:

            LOL. we come as a package deal

  235. janet says:

    Both of us are not tech savvy. You are my Abbot and I’m your Costello! I agreed to Veronica’s post that Kim deserves no sympathy and we can be mean.LOL. Laura believes in HEA and she will give that to us. So obviously you and I aren’t worried there. We shouldn’t worry at all but I think the anticipation of how Laura will resolve the questions are making us act like whackos. I reread all our posts and I am basically asking her the same things over and over again. She should be called sister Laura at this point with the amount of patience she’s shown me.

    • Tracie says:

      Janet one word can change the meaning of a sentence. Spinning our thoughts and questions and Laura giving us answers and insight has really opened these characters to me. The more we learn from Laura, the more the sequel will mean to me.

  236. Tracie says:

    Laura, I don’t want to know anything in the sequel, but from the time Liam was born until the book ended in July, did Phil have feelings of guilt for only being a part-time dad to Liam? This is another relationship that is affected by the affair. I’m sure having a son out of wedlock and not watching him grow and change everyday like he did with his and Lina’s kids would have to weigh on a man like Phil. In my mind, if he has guilt over Liam, that is what makes me worry about Logan. Will Phil try to over compensate with Liam because of his own guilt and neglect Logan! I love me some Logan too!

  237. Tracie says:

    Ok, but can you just give me a warm fuzzy (WF) about Liam, in fact you can juat reply back WF…. LOL

    • Tracie says:

      About Logan ugh

    • Laura says:

      Okay here’s your warm fuzzy. Lina is all about Logan and Phil is all about making Lina happy

      • janet says:

        I love that answer so much! Let Phil just concentrate on Lina and everything will fall in place. I know he loves all his kids equally but I hope Megan stays his favorite. Preferring Liam over Logan because he’s a baby would drive me batty and I really didn’t mind Megan. I know she was annoying to some but doesn’t she take after Phil(confident, overachieving, and a bit of a spoiled brat like our Phil)? Katie has Matt(such a great character), and Logan is Lina’s favorite with his sensitive soul. Liam is still a baby and just wants to be held and fed. In the end I’m hoping he will idolize not Phil but Logan as he grows older but will be happy wherever Laura takes us with this gang. Tracie, not counting August or Dec. we have 3 months!! What are you reading now to pass the time?

        • Laura says:

          That is true. Megan is a lot like Phil. What makes her annoying is her lack of modesty! Phil thinks he’s great but doesn’t feel the need to remind people.

  238. Tracie says:

    Oh thank you sweet lady! You wrote that boy so open and sweet, I felt his pain too! Also, this is another redeemable quality of Phil. Being separated from Lina for 6 months he was a part time dad to his and Lina’s kids too. That fact hit me hard, when Lina told him she had spent hours around Matt. Also, when Lina talked about her favorite times were when the kids and their friends stayed in on the weekends and the house was busy. He missed all of that, it must have hurt him bad and he was devasted with guilt. Laura did Phil ever just drive by and wonder what he was missing on his way to his empty house?

    • janet says:

      hmm. Can’t see Phil being maudlin and doing drive bys. He probably prayed, worked longer hours at work and plotted while running marathons or whatever he does. Laura, are you a runner? Lot of the characters in your book run… I know you said Kim was on her best behavior during the separation but hopefully she caused some drama for Phil so we can see him wanting to strangle her.

      • Tracie says:

        Janet you crack me up! I can see him driving by the house undetected. If anything to see if his family was home and safe. That’s why I think he lived so close, why he fixed stuff in the house, blew the leaves. He told her in Chapter 47, he would always take care of her. You are all about slapping the wench. I love it….Everytime Kim is mentioned and you get spun up, I imagine you looking for your mud wrestling gear LOL!

        • Janet says:

          Ohhh. Ok then yes I can see him driving by to see if everyone’s ok. The protective alpha coming out. I thought you meant phil making puppy eyes and trying get a glimpse of Lina. Ughh. He was all detached and remote even when he was over at the house blowing leaves with his broken hand. Phil!

          • Tracie says:

            He had to be detached to get her the space. Plus that’s the Alpha in him. Look how Tony tried to stay detached until they mauled each other over the designer cookie display. Wowza. Plus, remember at his brothers house after surgery, when Phil told her, I don’t want the friend part without the lover part! He was going to hold strong, until she made the first move. Laura may get me here, but I wonder if he thought, if she made the first move to reunite that somehow her forgiveness was near???

      • Laura says:

        Oh believe me, you will see him wanting to strangle her — Phil’s temper is definitely on full display in this sequel. I’m in a heightened state of anxiety at the moment from a scene I’ve been writing since yesterday morning — could last the entire weekend.

        Yes, I love to run!

        • Janet says:

          Oh Laura. I wish I could send you a bottle of wine!!!! I really do. No posts for me today. You unwind from the scene and take a break. XO

          • Laura says:

            LOL I’m still writing this scene — it’s a long one. The blog is my break! That and my crazy Vizsla that has more energy than any dog alive.

  239. Tracie says:

    I’m fixing to start reading Vi Keelands new book The Naked Truth. I haven’t done much binge reading, because I’m addicted to this blog and re-reading Laura’s books, thinking I missed something! LoL.

    Laura I did have a thought that Kim could be Tony’s mom’s illegitimate child LOL!

  240. janet says:

    I’m addicted too and haven’t been reading much. I was at the grocery store before coming home today and was constantly reloading the website to check for updates. Then I laughed out loud when I saw the “real” fish sticks. In regards to the kettle corn, I consider myself a calm person on most days but man when I got to chapter 22 of WPF I became a bit unhinged. Now I just want revenge. I haven’t been affected by a book in a long time and that’s a testament to how good Laura is as a writer.

  241. Tracie says:

    I know right I want to see the slap down of Kim, then I want Phil to go all soft and sweet with our Lina. I want signature soft kisses out of my Alpha Phil and all his hands on deck, if you get my meaning! LOL

  242. Tracie says:

    Laura is awesome because she lives what she writes. Look how her talent has us too living through these characters!

  243. Rachel says:

    I finished reading AWPF earlier today. I immediately started Googling for information on a sequel and here I am.
    This book freaking tormented me in the best and worst ways. I loved it, I hated it. I wanted to punch someone (Phil) I wanted to hug Lina and cheer her on and then I wanted to grab her by the shoulders and shake some sense into her.
    And Kim? Trust me I’ve got no warm fuzzies for her but this is all on Phil.
    Phil was not redeemed. It didn’t feel like he really understood the depth and severity of what he did. I felt like his betrayal was glossed over. There were so many things Lina should of said and didn’t.
    I’m not saying that I think it’s impossible for me to feel like Phil has redeemed himself. But damn it I want way more grovel and suffering from him.
    More raw emotion from Lina, more backbone. To make him really understand how he fucked up. Not her, not Kim, him.

    Ugh sorry for my rant! As you can tell this book evoked some intense emotions from me. And even though I raged at Phil and felt a deep sense of injustice for Lina and I was just so damn angry and confused I realized something. Books like this are why I have such a deep love of reading. I don’t necessarily mean the subject matter. I mean the way I felt connected to the story. The way the words grabbed onto my heart. The way I cared so much about the characters. The firestorm of feels it brought out in me. You’ve hooked me Laura. I’m all in for this . I’m invested. Thank god that there will be a sequel. You can be sure that the minute it’s available I’ll be buying it. ♡♡♡♡♡

    • Tracie says:

      Laura was Diane playing both ends against the middle where Phil and Lina were concerned. Did Phil ever know Lina had those pictures on her phone or will he? I wondered if Diane told Phil they were on her phone? I also wondered if Diane might have chastised him about the affair while he lived with them?

      • janet says:

        dang it you got another hot topic question. Good one. another one I wondered and thought only if Phil knew.

      • Laura says:

        The answer to your phone question will be in the sequel. No, Diane didn’t chastise Phil. He isn’t the type that would seek out or be receptive to counsel from a woman other than Lina.

        • Veronica says:

          Ah I see,
          I’m gonna be honest Diane seemed team Phil anyway so didn’t expect her to really say anyhting to him. But if he was living with them he could hardly tell her to stick her advice could he? No offence Phil is a bit of a hippocrite didn’t mind letting other people know what he thought of their behaviour such as Lina’s mum, but would not like anyone else seeing him Make mistakes or commenting to him.

          • Laura says:

            You are one hundred percent correct. He’s a hypocrite. He can’t forgive Lina’s father or Shiloh’s husband. He’s definitely a flawed hero

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much for the message Rachel! Believe me, I understand exactly what you’re saying and the negative repercussions for Phil aren’t over. I can’t see his personality groveling but he’s someone that likes to be in control and it’s impossible to maintain control when you let another person into your marriage. Lina is a work in progress — this was a life altering event and she’s slowly coming in to her own.

  244. Laura says:

    One more point about Kim — Phil is one hundred percent responsible for betraying Lina, but Kim intentionally took the hurt to a whole new level — throwing it all in Lina’s face. Writing the sequel isn’t easy and I kind of knew it wouldn’t be. What surprises me is that as much as I hated Kim at the end of A White Picket Fence, I feel a little sorry for her as the new story progresses.

    • janet says:

      Stay strong Laura. Yes I feel bad for her too because essentially Phil used her(ok I have to try hard here). However most women don’t go to this length trying to keep/get a guy. That’s where my disgust for her comes in. She’s an immature sore loser who thinks the world evolves around her and damn the consequences. She may not be a bunny boiler but I believe she has tendencies for devious behavior if it means she gets Phil. Plus her love is a selfish kind of love not true love. Once she chose to have the baby and use it as a weapon mostly to keep Phil I knew I never wanted her anywhere near the Hunters. Tracie can feel pity. I think she’s pathetic and embarrassing in her attempts and frankly no guy is worth this obsession.

  245. Tracie says:

    Well Laura that last sentence probably just put my girl Janet on full melt down. But even though I want her pounced on for the way she shredded Lina, it took two to tango.

  246. tracie says:

    I need to add one more comment about the takes two to tango comment, I knew when Phil’s wrath turned on Kim, it would make Joseph going after Ned look like a slap on the wrist. Yes, do I want her to feel the same hurt Lina did….yes and more. But Phil and Kim were both at fault…..I think by the end of the sequel Kim’s mantra might be “be careful what you wish for.”

    • Laura says:

      LOL — I never felt sorry for Ned. I disliked his character through the entire book. Kim is as bad as Ned, worse probably. I think I’m feeling sorry for her right now because of the scene I’m writing. I hope it doesn’t last LOL. I doubt anyone else would feel sorry for her — she does deserve what she’s getting.

      • Janet says:

        Ooh I love what you said. My soul will sing after reading this part. Kim’s a survivor and won’t stay down for long. Once you write another drama scene where she acts like satan, the pity will be a thing in the past.
        Peace ✌️

        • Tracie says:

          Not pity, I’m not that sweet and yes when the witch is melting I will like it too! I knew you were going to have a melt down!

          • Janet says:

            8:30 am and haven’t had my coffee yet. You called it Tracie! I will try and be the sweet one next time.

    • janet says:

      Exactly. Careful what you wish for Kim. But yes we can feel sorry for her bc Lina will be the one on top of the hill singing Sound of Music’s Climb Every Mountain while holding Liam. next time Kim, play by the rules and wait for a single man to ask you out. Chasing after married men are just tacky.

      • Laura says:

        Haha! That’s great! What a visual!

      • Tracie says:

        I whole heartedly agree Janet, but Phil gave in to her chasing, that makes him a little tacky too! I’m not defending Kim (can’t stand her), but I can see through the clearing a little here. This book is justice for Lina, which means hell and brimstone for Kim, yes she deserves it, but she can’t shoulder all the blame. Phil and Kim both set themselves up for failure by doing the deed for four months! The Sound oF Music Reference loved it! LOL

        • Janet says:

          Tracie you read my rant few days ago. I do blame Phil. You and Laura both said I want to see Phil cry. All I’m saying is after Phil suffers he will get a hea but Kim doesn’t.

          • Tracie says:

            I give Janet …..LOL. Laura can you have Kim leaving the sequel in rags singing Swing Low??? Lol.

        • Laura says:

          Easy Tracie — you’re team Phil, remember? Don’t let the others sway you! LOL

          • Tracie says:

            In your words “Never”! I give on Kim, not Phil! I was just trying to point out on the tacky comment that he is not blameless. He recognizes that so redeemed. When Janet reads that she’ll puke….

        • Veronica says:

          Completely amazing point.
          I cannot bear Kim, she is malicious and nasty to the point of being crazy. However, Phil is the one who turned to her and carried on the affair, spent time with her, accepted a gift off of her etc and he also was the other person who was silly enough to not use protection and get her pregnant. The only reason she is in Lina and the children’s lives to spread her poison is because Phil let her get there. She has this power because of Phil’s actions also so he defintely needs to work hard for redemption and shoulder a lot of the blame as well. There is no one bad guy in this scenario.

          • Tracie says:

            Veronica have you read Laura’s other books? I wanted to point something out but if you haven’t, I wouldn’t want to ruin it for you.

          • janet says:

            I agree Veronica that there is no one bad guy here. I was you 2 months ago and still struggle with Phil’s actions. How would you like the sequel to go? In your eyes can Phil be redeemed? What’s done is done but since we didn’t see Phil’s side I think we will see the reasons behind some of the questions. Some of his transgressions have now turned into “mysteries.” Not the cheating obviously but the big points will be explained. Let’s trust Laura to take us to a good place. I want to see Lina and Logan happy. Also, Nick deserves someone who will put him first and we both know that’s not Lina.

          • Tracie says:

            That is what is going to cause Phil the most remorse, is that HE opened his family to such hurt, especially Lina! However, just like Laura’s other alpha male characters, he will go into protect mode to protect what’s his. I told Laura once that Phil broke Lina’s heart, but Kim shredded it. he won’t take it well for his wife being humiliated because of his actions either. Point in case, Tony’s mom’s..little stunt with Casey. The sequel is going to be a roller coaster of emotions, can’t wait girls!

          • Rachel says:

            Yes thank you Veronica!!! I completely agree. I hated how Phil reacted when Kim sent the text messages and pics to Lina. He would say things like she’s just trying to upset you and don’t let her (Kim) win. And would brush it off and actually seemed annoyed that Lina was so hurt and effected. He wanted to quickly sweep it all away and blame it all on Kim. And yes I get the fact that Kim was adding insult to injury but this was all because of PHIL!! If he never did these things there would be no pics to send. Kim had no loyalty to Lina. Phil did. He says he knows he is 100% responsible and that he regrets what he did but his words and actions say otherwise.
            That he had the nerve to get so angry and righteous and leave Lina when she got upset over the pics and went to Nick. I was so pissed off and hurt for Lina and wanted Lina to stand up more for herself. I wanted her to leave him and never look back. If what Lina did made Phil that upset to the point of him separating from her and treating her like shit then I would of hoped that maybe he’d wake up and realize that what he did to Lina was a million times worse and how daMN selfish he was being. He needed to be kind and patient with her. To understand that she may need time to procees her feelings and talk about it. Not get upset with her because hey he already said sorry and she just needs to get over it.

          • Veronica says:

            Thank you girls for your great replies! Your views on this book have been amazing to read! Tracie I have read ‘A Sense of Beloning’ which I loved! So talk to me ha!
            Janet I am really hoping Phil redeems himself in this book! He is the potential, but he really has to work for it after all that was revealed! It was so frustrating in the first book because Phil has so much potential to be a great hero, but I felt like every step he took forward, he would do something to bring them two steps back, like taking Kim to Steamboat, attending a wedding he should have avoide, or treating Lina as if the was the betrayer with Nick etc. I want to see him really prove himself and be totally about Lina and not worry what people think of him or worry about his pride, and show me how much he loves Lina instead of just saying it! I’m so looming forward to how this sequel goes as Laura is a fantastic worried and is so honest in her answers! Janet you are also correct Nick deserved a woman completely dedicated to him! He is a good guy!
            I the Lim but want to see Phil take more responsibility and not use her as a scapegoat either! This book is going to be intense!

  247. Tracie says:

    I never felt sorry for Ned, not one little but, can’t say on Kim until I read the sequel. But Kim did shred Lina, and Phil will not only shred Kim but will probably turn her to dust. My point is not feeling pity, but both Phil and Kim have to shoulder the blame here for what they both did to Lina. Phil doesn’t get to hop right back into happy life, and Kim get sent to Mars LOL! They both have to pay. Plus they share a kid now too.

    • janet says:

      btw, that Tesla guy Elon Musk said Mars will be habitable despite what scientists say. Let’s make Kim the guinea pig. she can work on her wiles on Elon there and leave Phil alone.
      sorry, couldn’t resist the dig.

      • Tracie says:

        You never will Lol….That’s one of your qualities I like the most!! I read you comment to Veronica and yes, Nick deserves a nice woman, but you remember, he wasn’t pining for Lina, she called and he was loving the one he was with and it wasn’t her. You know by now that Chapter 47 was one of my favorites, but when Phil wrapped her up when they ran into Nick and Dana, and Phil only stated he was her husband! What did Nick do, but throw out his best impression of Alfred Hitchcock “Good Evening”. Phil and Tony are like two fighting dogs at the end of their chains… LOL

        • Janet says:

          Why are you hating on nick? He’s still one of laura’s men and served his purpose well right?! Also, we may see him in another book so you better play nice. Haha. Ok one thing in nicks defense. He only slept with that woman after Lina told him she slept with Phil. If anything I think he gave up too easily but he was trying to move on. I told Laura this morning I wouldn’t post anything today but you know me better Tracie.

          • Tracie says:

            I’m not hating on Nick! He just can’t be compared with Tony or Phil. Ok I’m over that now LOL! Yes he was a good character and I appreciated his part in the book and will welcome him with open arms, if and when Laura makes him a hero! LOL

          • Laura says:

            Maybe for the right woman, Nick would display more alpha tendencies.

          • Tracie says:

            I told you we had to quit promising not to post, that’s just being unrealistic where we are concerned. plus Laura said she’s on anxiety overload this weekend….we are considered a breather LOL!

      • Laura says:

        perfect!

        • Tracie says:

          I can agree with that! Lina is Phil’s period. Laura what was Phil’s thinking at the end of Chapter 43, BEFORE he asked “have you been with him.” When she said no! He let out the breath! Loved that scene. I can only imagine his thoughts if she would of said yes!

          • Laura says:

            He didn’t want to ask, but the thought of it tormented him. He was hoping for relief and he got it.

    • Tracie says:

      Veronica you and Rachel have been such a great addition to our discussions. Thank you for your thoughts and insight. I really enjoyed you girls.

      • Veronica says:

        Ha ha really? I was
        Worried I was rambling! I love this
        Discussion! Really gets feelings out and questions answered! You and Janet and Rachel have made some amazing points!

  248. Janet says:

    Kim just isn’t a type of character who would shoulder any kind of blame. She’s selfish to the core. If there was any character growth for her it should have been during the 9 months she was carrying Liam. Did she? No. Instead she chose to move a mile and a half away from Phil. I’m ok with her staying true to her character and not a born again Christian

    • Laura says:

      Exactly. She’s narcistic — classic case of a personality disorder. She is never at fault. People like that don’t change

      • Tracie says:

        Girls we all agree Kim’ nuttier than a fruit cake. Promise Janet I will not at anytime feel sorry for the enemy im anyway shape or form! Thanks for bringing me back from the brink of falling victim to the Stockholm Syndrome! LOL

  249. janet says:

    LOL!! I’m thinking we all need some wine tonight after today’s posts. Lots of love, anger, and meltdowns going on here. I will toast to Laura’s kind heart and her crazy brainpower and Tracie’s amazing ability to diffuse any hyper tense situations. wine is the answer for today.

    • Laura says:

      I think I’m going to need the hard stuff after this scene — almost done!

      • Tracie says:

        Dang Janet, if Laura is having this much anxiety writing (hard stuff) the sequel that means we are going to have loads of anxiety reading it! So…. not only a food run prior to the sequel, but a trip to Liquor Warehouse as well. LOL

      • Tracie says:

        Janet if Laura is having this much anxiety writing the sequel (hard stuff) that means we will have anxiety reading it. So the day prior to the sequel coming out, we not only need to make a food run, but one to Liquor Warehouse as well. LOL

        • Tracie says:

          I didn’t think this one posted! My screen refreshed right when I was sending. Sorry girls for the double post.

  250. Tracie says:

    You are my wing woman Janet, I’m thinking a little Cab would hit the spot too! I’m lifting my glass for surviving the melt down and Laura’s incredible knack to insight them! LOL.

    • Tracie says:

      Laura just the thought of Lina sleeping with Nick tormented Phil, so will we see him (his POV) understand the torment Lina went through, by knowing he did sleep with another woman. I don’t know if I said that just right, but you always know what I mean!

      • janet says:

        I don’t think Phil could have handled that. That would have been an added angst we do not need. Justified or not. Phil could have used that against Lina later when they argue.

        • Tracie says:

          I know, that’s why I couldn’t even of imagined it! Nor could Lina, revenge sex just wasn’t in the cards for her, she only wanted Phil.

      • Laura says:

        Phil is selfish and still a work in progress. I think as Lina gets stronger and more independent he will be forced to see the world a little differently, but that will take time… WARNING (spoiler ahead)… Lina’s eyes widened in disbelief. “Move Logan from a school he loves because you don’t want to have to see a man who at one time had feelings for me?”
        “He was in love with you.”
        “You have a baby with another woman, Phil. Oh my God! I can’t believe we’re even having this conversation!”

        • janet says:

          OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

          • janet says:

            LOL. dying here. Veronica and Rachel, you don’t like him just a tiny bit after that spoiler? Just don’t think about the steamboat and the pictures for now. Let’s give Phil a chance. His POV will be pure 24ct. Just no more “ignore her” “I’m sorry” comments pls! For crying out loud, Laura felt sorry for the OW. I know that chapter alone would redeem Phil in my eyes.

          • Laura says:

            I think that scene made all the frustration they felt for Phil in the first book resurface. Believe me, when I wrote it I wanted to slap him too.

        • Rachel says:

          Maybe I just have to be okay with the fact that I’ll never like Phil. Maybe he’s not mention to be liked. LOL.

          • Rachel says:

            *ment not mentioned stupid auto-correct!

          • Veronica says:

            Ha h that’s what I’m worrroed about at this point! I don’t mind an alpha, but hate an asshole and he is treading the line! It annoys me he can be alpha when it suits but not be finer with Kim when it is needed! If he is nice to he at the hospital he needs some sense knocking into him.

          • Veronica says:

            Ha ha same here need to check my spelling! Meant firmer with Kim! And nice to her!

        • Rachel says:

          Maybe Phil needs a trilogy to gain some emotional growth! 😉

          • Laura says:

            LOL that was funny! In all seriousness, I think having Phil’s POV will go a long way to redeeming him. I may be wrong but I think if you keep an open mind (and heart) you’ll even like him by the end.

        • Tracie says:

          Ok girls let’s all take a breath ….but Geez!!!!! No, his mistake is a mile down the road, are they going to sell their house now too?? Plus, Kim is in love with Phil and Lina has to see her! Phil is struggling for control he can’t have at this point! He can’t control another mans feelings for his wife and he doesn’t want anyone Near Lina that could possibly turn her head in any way shape or form. She’s his woman! But sorry Phil, Logan is staying at his school and maybe this is just a little penance for your actions! Karma just bit his ass! (My opinion only on the school).But I’m still team Phil!!!

          • janet says:

            hear hear. Phil can move Logan from the school. That’s fine with me. That spoiler was hawwwwt. Phil is so jealous. Love that! Can you give us a strangling Kim spoiler next Laura? bahahaha. Thank you for making my night!

          • Tracie says:

            Janet it’s probably not ok with Logan to move. Logan has been in turmoil for over a year, this would be like bam to him! But you are right on the hawwwwwt! I knew he was going to be sooooo jealous. That’s why I asked if Phil’s POV would notice other men watching Lina, like she noticed them watching Phil.

          • Laura says:

            I’m not okay with Logan having to move either LOL

          • Tracie says:

            Laura don’t you think too, that Is desperate to move Logan out of I don’t want to say fear, you would get me on that…. but plain old jealousy and resentment against Nick cause he saw Lina as something other than Phil’s wife? Plus Lina’s choice in Chapter 29 was the most devastating moment in his life, that could be another reason. But Phil will just have to feel uncomfortable, this is part of what he told Logan actions have consequences and this is one for Phil.

          • Laura says:

            very good point!

  251. janet says:

    Gawd to all. Shhh but I love those cheap boxed wine and wine coolers/spritzers(yes they are still around!). Thats not gonna cut it so I’ll go out and stock up on sake and soju which are my hard liquor of choice. Also there are so many comments now I have to refresh the top page to see if anything’s been posted. I missed it till now.

  252. janet says:

    Lord we WERE separated at birth Tracie. I love black box cabby savvy too!

  253. Rachel says:

    Yes thank you Veronica!!! I completely agree. I hated how Phil reacted when Kim sent the text messages and pics to Lina. He would say things like she’s just trying to upset you and don’t let her (Kim) win. And would brush it off and actually seemed annoyed that Lina was so hurt and effected. He wanted to quickly sweep it all away and blame it all on Kim. And yes I get the fact that Kim was adding insult to injury but this was all because of PHIL!! If he never did these things there would be no pics to send. Kim had no loyalty to Lina. Phil did. He says he knows he is 100% responsible and that he regrets what he did but his words and actions say otherwise.
    That he had the nerve to get so angry and righteous and leave Lina when she got upset over the pics and went to Nick. I was so pissed off and hurt for Lina and wanted Lina to stand up more for herself. I wanted her to leave him and never look back. If what Lina did made Phil that upset to the point of him separating from her and treating her like shit then I would of hoped that maybe he’d wake up and realize that what he did to Lina was a million times worse and how daMN selfish he was being. He needed to be kind and patient with her. To understand that she may need time to procees her feelings and talk about it. Not get upset with her because hey he already said sorry and she just needs to get over it

  254. Tracie says:

    Laura since we are the underdogs (Team Phil), I hope we are strong finishers! LOL. Thanks for the Warning word!

    • Laura says:

      We definitely seem to be in the minority on this blog!

    • Rachel says:

      Tracie I want to be Team Phil I really do! And I honestly think reading his POV will help a lot with that. I have faith he will earn his redemption! 🙂
      Honestly I do appreciate that Laura made Phil such complex, multi-layered person. He’s not perfect and he’s got some soul searching to do and changes to make and that doesn’t happen overnight. It makes him more real and gives the whole story a more true to life feel. Life and love isn’t all rainbows and sunshine. Sometimes we hurt the people we love and act in selfish ways.
      Taking a good long hard look at yourself and really facing up to your mistakes and the pain you’ve caused is hard and scary. In a way Phil is just reacting like most people probably would. He knows he’s sorry and he’s ashamed and he feels guilt. But it’s easier and less painful for him and maybe he thinks for Lina as well to try and just treat it as something that needs to be put in the past and forgotten. I don’t think he’s the worst person ever but I want to believe in his and Lina’s love. And with the way he acted and things he said I just can’t. Not yet. But Lina and Phil’s story has got it’s hooks into me and I’m totally invested in their journey and so I have hope.

      I just really think there are some hard truths
      that Phil needs to face about himself. I mean even his reason for starting the affair was weak. And why would Lina ever believe that next time the going gets tough he won’t stray again? He holds everyone else to such a high expectation of moral standards and behavior. He holds grudges and doesn’t forgive others very well. But he doesn’t practice what he preaches. He easily excuses away his major betrayal. Gives shallow, surface apologies and expects instant forgiveness.

      I swear I have never felt so bi-polar over a book character! 🙂

      • Veronica says:

        This is amazing and exactly how I felt about Phil! Hope we see him grow! I also felt his reason for straying was weak and that he excused his own mistakes a lot when he expected high standards a lot! His attitude towards Logan annoyed me as well when Lina told him Logan was worried about disappointing Phil! He has a lot to learn!

      • janet says:

        well said Rachel. This book’s angst level was almost unbearable at times. I too felt bi polar after reading the book but realized that was due more to Laura’s amazing writing than the subject matter. I have read some books on cheating before and forgot about them the next day(I think the best one other than this one is Willow Aster’s True Love Story). After reading The White Picket Fence, I deliberately sought out cheating books to see if I could understand Phil more. Again, wasn’t really affected and I binge read them(boy there are so many on chick lit genre). They all share similarities though. The guys don’t deliberately set out to cheat on their loved ones. Yes, the reason for cheating may seem weak but when is cheating not? We will never find an answer that satisfies us or one that rationalizes Phil’s behavior on this topic. Never. Did you read earlier post where Laura told me it was the perfect storm for Phil? I think if you weed out some comments where Tracie and I ramble, you will find some answers before the sequel that may calm your bi polar tendency. I asked a lot. Tracie who has always been Team Phil asked alot. Laura answered all(who does that) and I think I get Phil now. He is a deeply flawed character but I don’t doubt his love for Lina. Once we get Phil’s POV we will find peace. I know I will. Just trust Laura to work her magic on us!!

        • Veronica says:

          That does make a lot
          Of sense and you have some great points! I have read lots of infidelity books recently,
          Sort of to compare! I found Wrecking Ball by BN Toler pretty good, as well as With or Without you by Helen Warner. Any books you would recommend? I have already read Willow Aster’s novel!

      • Laura says:

        Thanks Rachel. I think you nailed a big portion of his personality. I’m not sure if I addressed my next point on this blog or answering an email so I apologize if I repeat myself. I don’t believe Phil really understood why he cheated — this is why his excuse was lame and I guess you could say that would make him more likely to do it again — I don’t agree because almost loosing Lina shook him to his core. Crazy or not, he never believed that was a possibility. By the end of the sequel both he and Lina will understand what brought them to that point. Not that anything can excuse an affair, but it helps to understand why it happened.

        • Veronica says:

          That sounds great,
          Really want to get to the route of the affair and their distance! Just to make sure they never reach that point Again!

      • Tracie says:

        Rachel I think you will be Team Phil by the end of the sequel. When I read the book, there were so many times I wanted to filet Phil, but what I saw as the book progressed was Phil flopping like a fish out of water without Lina. He was devastated as he should of been, because his actions devasted the one person he claimed to love more than anything in the world. I knew that Phil’s love ran deep for Lina and Kim was a very selfish act on his part, purely mechanical and physical, but had life altering consequences. All the fan girls are right “I’m sorry” isn’t good enough to erase the hurt inflicted by his actions. However, saying that, I still won’t give up on Phil! I’m just like all of you girls and need more of their journey, for AWPF not to haunt me anymore! Hang with Team Phil Rachel, we’re a sure bet!

  255. janet says:

    Tracie you are right about Logan. My hormones dictated my brain for a min I think. Anyway, Laura, I know a perfect mate for Nick! What do you think of Joseph’s ex girlfriend, the art gallery owner? I always felt bad for her because she loved Joseph. If she(sorry her name escapes me right now) and Nick got together, they can ruminate on Rumi and art all night long. I want Nick with a brainy supermodel with a heart of gold! just thinking out loud as usual..

  256. Tracie says:

    Janet my hormones do get in the way with Phil too LOL! I want Phil plasters to her in and out of bed like a good spray tan!

    • janet says:

      Good spray tan! Perfect!! Me too. Those few lines were awesome. I’m chopping zucchini. Refresh. Chop chop refresh. Chop. Insane!

    • Laura says:

      LOL he is very touchy

      • Tracie says:

        I just did the same thing making a peach cobbler LOL

      • Tracie says:

        Oh good, I need to see that with him. Also, can he be in bed waiting on her after midnight! Lol. Let him go looking for her, maybe find her out on the side patio drinking cabby savvy, then you can throw in some pool sexcapades! LOL. They are always talking about swimming naked, I’m just saying…..

        • Laura says:

          LOL I could just imagine Alice showing up in the middle of it and sitting on the deck chair and trying to have a conversation.

          • Tracie says:

            I just laughed so loud, how funny would that be! Alice would just say that’s so beautiful what you two are doing. Then Lina could say you use to wait for the bed to quit squeaking, could you have not waited to sit down until the water kept slapping the side of the pool?

          • Laura says:

            OMG now I’m LOL. I should do it.

          • Laura says:

            I’m not sure if I ever mentioned this, but Alice is based on my mother. As crazy and outlandish as she seems to readers, she was true to form.

  257. Tracie says:

    Not kept slapping but stopped slapping LOL! I couldn’t see through my tears of laughter.

  258. janet says:

    no wonder! Alice’s character is so fleshed out. I remember thinking the author has to know someone like this. so en point in character staying in character throughout the book

  259. janet says:

    LOL. I’m gonna need more alcohol for that scene.

  260. Rachel says:

    Laura I think you’re fabulous and I love that you have this forum for readers to discuss their thought and feelings about your books.

    I hope I’m not coming off that I didn’t like AWPF because of all my Phil hate. I five stared it on Goodreads and I rarely rate a book with five stars.
    For me the mark of a good book isn’t about whether or not I agreed with all the characters actions or it ended the way I thought it should. It’s hard to explain but reading for me is all about the emotional experience. I have read tons of books that I thought were good, great even but they didn’t leave any real lasting impression on me. It was just passing entertainment. I have read so many books with waaaay worse over the top, cruel, cheating, abusive alphas and while I didn’t like them they never brought out even a tiny fraction of feelings like Phil has. They never got under my skin like that. I know I’ll be thinking about this book for a long time and it will be one that I will re-read over and over. I guess for now I just love to hate Phil.

    Oh and I’m going to write a review on Goodreads as well but need some time to gather my thoughts and make it coherent. 😉

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Rachel. I really enjoy reading your thoughts. I read all my reviews – some are painful (I hate that I care, but I am a sensitive Cancer — there’s my mom coming out). If a review is thorough and supported with examples, I enjoy them. Sometimes I get ideas or insights into the characters I hadn’t considered. After a comment from Tracie the other day I went back into a scene and added a paragraph — it definitely made it better!

      • janet says:

        Would that be the hospital scene Laura?

        • Laura says:

          Yes! And we’re probably to the point where I should add you and Tracie as coauthors. I never understood that concept before but I now understand how that could work LOL

          • janet says:

            Oh I can’t wait! Laura, Tracie and I speak gibberish but I do appreciate her theories and our what if scenarios. Lol. I’m so happy to see all the readers joining the creative book discussion as Liana called it.

          • Tracie says:

            Laura You are the author, we just happened to be lucky enough to help stir your creative juices at times LOL! Girls this is all a team effort and we are fortunate to have a gracious and talented women as a Team Lead. Thank you Laura!

  261. janet says:

    Lord we are all on the same page here. Love him or hate him phil brought out the beast in all of us.

  262. Tracie says:

    Woman not women, Geez I Ned my own editor!

  263. Tracie says:

    Really Ned instead of need. I’m going to bed…..LOL

  264. janet says:

    Laura, I was going to leave you alone today being that even God rested on Sunday but saw that you are at 598 comments and thought Tracie and I could get you to the 600th mark to start off the week. haha. So here’s my question/ comment. You mentioned yesterday that after the sequel Phil and Lina will at least understand why the affair happened. To me, it was clear how and why it started and I got Phil saying it just happened. I got that. Now when Lina says that sounds like a one night stand, how did it go on for four months? Phil’s only answer was it became more and that’s where the conversation stopped. Throughout the book(probably lost in editing is my guess) this “became more” was never delved into any further. Will you write scenes with Phil and Kim during the affair? I don’t mean a sex scene but how he interacted with Kim during the fling? I know how he will be towards her after it is over so I want to see how he treated Lina the love of his life and Kim the no good mistress differently. Even though I’m not referring to the bedroom scenes, I actually got frustrated with Phil when he said I only ever made love to you Lina. Instead of reassuring me, what I got from ch. 9 is I had wild passionate sex with Kim but you I love so I make love to you with gentleness. Yes, I know I’m wrong! Tracie would smack me reading this. Laura, will you show me that I’m wrong!?

    • Laura says:

      LOL — I think I’m the 600th comment! The sequel will not have any flashbacks to Kim and Phil as a couple/fling or whatever you want to call it. I told you before that I would write a few extra scenes for the first book after I complete the sequel. I’ll make sure to have a couple showing them. Just a note of caution — Kim did fall in love with him, so he couldn’t have treated her that bad.

      • Tracie says:

        Yuck, you can leave those out. LOL

      • Veronica says:

        Does Kim really know why love is though? She seems malicious and slightly off key. She seems like she loves the chase and forbidden fruit. I feel like she becomes obsessed easily and does not like to lose. I can’t imagine her love is real or deep or that Phil is her first married guy?

  265. janet says:

    Yay on 601 posts! Understood and thank you! I always thought it was lust and love and first sight for Kim. Will wait for it not that I have any choice. Lol

    • Tracie says:

      Hi girls, that’s one of the reasons why I wanted Phil and Lina to ramp up the steam in the sequel. I want some buttons flying at least once. I want Phil like Tony during the New Year’s Scene, it’s been a week and I can’t wait. Janet I think the reason he said you are the only woman I’ve made love too, has nothing to do with gentleness, but emotion. Lina is the only woman he as loved, while physically having sex.

  266. Tracie says:

    Remember Janet he was not emotionally attached to Kim, he was just physically. It became more (in my opinion) because it was new and exciting, plus Lina had been turning him down, so he went for it. He was smoozimg Kim in New York, like any guy would wanting to get lucky. Kim saw her future in Phil….Phil saw an easy stress reliever!

  267. Tracie says:

    I do have a thought in line with yours Janet. Laura where I got a little sideways when I first read Chapter 1, was in the span of a few hours, you’ve gone from contemplating a rendezvous with your girlfriend to the connection back with your wife! I know the connection between them is significant and I know the history now, because you told us. But what was his thoughts when Lina noticed the tie? I’m also thinking maybe just maybe, The newness was wearing off and Kim may have started to get a little clingy!

    • Janet says:

      Hello! That’s why I asked before if he finished his business early in the City because he didn’t want to be alone with Kim but that wasn’t the case. I also don’t think he was scared Lina would find out anything when she questioned him about the tie. He was so nonchalant about it all lying so easily and turning it around saying why do you care? And yes it was little hard to believe the lust disappeared abruptly once Lina and Phil reconnected knowing he was contemplating a meet just hours before. That’s why I want to see their interaction during the affair. I know he wasn’t horrible to Kim but I want to see him loving on Lina and being casual and nonchalant with his attitude with Kim.

      • Tracie says:

        Janet we saw in the pictures that he wasn’t nonchalant with Kim, he was an eager beaver chasing the sex train, while in New York. Back in Baltimore everything was in her apartment except for the running group that we saw! But In the text messages Kim would sometimes ask where the rendezvous would happen…..that threw me a little.

        • Laura says:

          Kim lived in Baltimore

          • Tracie says:

            So wouldn’t she just assume it would be her apt. I think one message said Lunch? She said Where? He said Apt! That’s why I was asking.

          • Laura says:

            Ohhhh they had a corporate apartment in the building with his office. Yikes another edited out scene

        • janet says:

          Ugh. I can’t handle it. I want to see him not giving two figs about her maybe during a dinner out in ny? Just something where he’s not grabby with her. When I see eater beaver I think possessive and I don’t want that since she’s nada like we said before.

          • Tracie says:

            A corporate apartment; see Janet not thought, no romance. Phil was just being physically tended too! He wouldn’t rub two Nichols together for her! I guarantee their dinners were on the law firm, since they were on business.

      • Laura says:

        he’s a lawyer and Kim was a distraction. He never stopped wanting Lina

    • Laura says:

      so his wife holding the tie and discussing it with him is the first time his worlds really collide. I think that moment gave the tie more significance in his mind and he receives the text — trying to see him again after they were just together. Then he reconnects with Lina — it’s over

  268. Tracie says:

    Where was his tie that Lina had packed?

    • janet says:

      Kim probably threw it away. 😭 Why do you think she gave him this particular gift? A pink tie of all things. She’s staking a claim to him however small it may be. He could have said in passing that he doesn’t wear pink and kim got it for him knowing this. My theory is way out there but I can see her pulling his stunt. He better have stained it and not indulged Kim in wearing the tie for her. Of course I believe Laura he gave zero thought to it but he’s a guy. Girls put emphasis and meaning to everything! He could not care less about a stupid tie but it did the job and Lina noticed!!

    • Laura says:

      Good question. She should have looked for a stain.

  269. Tracie says:

    Laura after the ball game, when Phil went to Kim’s, was he nice then? He was panicked at the ball game, which tells me she dropped the pregnany bomb then while they were texting (I’m assuming)?? Did Phil let Kim know that he would be telling Lina about the affair and pregnancy? Did Kim ask Phil to leave his wife for her that night? I wondered because he said in Chapter 15, I never said I was leaving my wife, no, no, I didn’t say that? Say what?? What where his thoughts on the drive home that night ?

    • Laura says:

      this will be a great scene to add to the first book. Was he nice — no way. I’m guessing catholic phil was begging her not to go through with the pregnancy and when she wouldn’t he agree he probably got mad. On his way home, pure shock and the fear that he was going to lose his family

      • janet says:

        This scene would be so good. The whole time I was reading the ballgame scene I was muttering out loud to my 14 yr old daughter in the room! What are you texting? What’s happening? Show me the damn screen? You are leaving her at 8:30?! I was so agitated. My daughter begged me to read your book. I said when you turn 18 this can be your first romance novel for now go finish Rebecca!

        • Laura says:

          LOL — I think my first romance novel was Forever by Judy Blume, remember that?

          • janet says:

            Oh god yes! I was the only one to have it in my 5th grade class. That copy went around the whole class including the boys! Man I was so popular that month. My parents worked all day so my siblings and I came home with keys around our necks(I swear it was ok in the 70s. I think). My mom had no idea. I think she was just happy I was reading. That’s why my daughter won’t pick one up till she’s 18!

          • Laura says:

            LOL I didn’t realize until my daughter was about 17 that she had been using iTunes cards to buy romance novels, not music

          • janet says:

            DNA! Thanks for the heads up. I better check!! So far her favorite are bronte and Austen and I hope to keep it that way for a little longer.

          • Laura says:

            Nice. Yes keep her reading the good stuff! I love Jane Austen!

  270. Laura says:

    I have been in Phil’s POV all day. We are currently drinking a glass of scotch (in the novel) and it’s not even 11 a.m. What an emotional rollercoaster — yesterday was anxiety and today tears. He may not have shed tears, but hearing his thoughts, and feeling his emotions made me. I sent it to my 22-year-old (who is NOT a Phil fan) and she texted me that she cried — even felt sorry for him — be careful what you wish for Janet — if it’s hard to write it’s going to be hard to read.

    • Tracie says:

      Well first of all Laura, she has your DNA so tell her she has no choice but Team Phil LOL! I knew it was going to be emotional from his standpoint, he’s can se the damage done by his own hand and it’s devastating to him. He is in love with his wife and kids. I could see that in the first book, even through his betrayal.

      • Laura says:

        It’s like your in my head. And yes my daughter should be team Phil. Instead she loves them in this order: Joseph, Nick, Tony, and that’s it. She thinks Phil is a rockhead haha

        • Tracie says:

          Why not Tony first? Geez! I love all your men, but my favs are Tony and Phil!

          • Laura says:

            Seriously, right? I think Joseph because that was the first one she read. I don’t know why Tony isn’t a close second though. Crazy

          • janet says:

            Oh I can totally see a 22 year old’s first choice being Joseph and Nick second. She likes them brainy with few dashes of macho thrown in. We are older and since our husbands tend to meddle in our affairs, our fantasy men are controlling alphas who are perfectly flawed. I always said reading romance novels at an early age ruined me for real men! Oh also, I love the personal tidbits you give us here and there. Your mom, daughter, sister, and even your dog! Not stalking just appreciating here.

          • Laura says:

            LOL — I agree. I read way too many romance novels growing up. I make myself read everything now, but I still have to binge read romance novels every so often. Have you girls read any Cara McKenna?

          • janet says:

            I’ve seen her on amazon where it recommends similar authors but never read her. Is she good? I have Sara manning but I haven’t read past first few pages yet. I too try and read other genres ie reading the required English books with my kids and one of my fav books in the world is Stephen kings’s Lisey’s story(but this could be considered a romance). I also love suspense thrillers. Harlan Coben.

          • Laura says:

            I liked Hardtimes and After Hours by Cara McKenna. They are erotica but there’s a story and she has a real talent at bringing characters to life. I think they take place in more of a rural area and the characters aren’t rich. It’s a refreshing change. I’ve never read that Stephen King novel. I read all my daughter’s required readings too — I always enjoyed them. I just never would have picked them myself

          • Tracie says:

            I’ve never read Cara. You like her?

          • Laura says:

            just those two — hardtimes and after hours

        • Veronica says:

          I like your daughters thinking!

    • janet says:

      I’m sorry Laura! Can I put the blame on Veronica and Rachel instead? Kidding kidding. I take full responsibility asking you to take me there.

    • Tracie says:

      I’m hoping Lina walks in behind him and hugs him tight, while resting her cheek on his back. I think Phil and Lina both will at times need those quite moments. I hope Phil (only with Lina) is humbled by Lina’s love and forgiveness.

      • Laura says:

        You’ve somehow glimpsed portions of this manuscript haven’t you? Wow!

        • Tracie says:

          No I just know that they will needs those moments, I would! This might sound ridiculous but Phil will need Lina’s help in forgiving himself!

          • Laura says:

            That’s why I think some (not many) marriages get closer after a betrayal

          • janet says:

            Tracie you and Laura are truly the sweet to my salty. This isn’t ridiculous at all and I know Laura would agree with you. My salty response is your a grown ass man, figure it out yourself with help from God. I’m definetely more Adele. However, Lina can hug him from the back. I agree Phil needs her TLC!

          • Laura says:

            Adele is in rare form in this book LOL She may even have a bit of a romance

          • janet says:

            I love Adele! You don’t say!! I would love for her to find her forever!

          • Tracie says:

            Oh my gosh chasing you girls all over this blog is truly a trip! I don’t know how you do it Laura!

          • Laura says:

            I kind of have an advantage. Mine come in order via email

          • Tracie says:

            I’ve been replying to the comment below below, verses above which has me out of sync with you girls!

  271. janet says:

    Just reading some posts I had heightened anxiety yesterday. I haven’t read it so I need it. Not many can wield words like you so I may eat my words. But I need to see him baring his soul.

    • Tracie says:

      This is going to be epic Janet! You’ll not only see him bare his soul, you’ll know his heart only beats for Lina.

    • Tracie says:

      Oh Janet, you are so leaning on the side of Team Phil. You rock my little salty sweetie….LOL

      BTW since you’ve learned to reply under the comments, I feel like I’m playing that old newspaper game “Where’s Waldo”. LOL

  272. janet says:

    Ok so just to lighten things up I now only need to see Phil stand up to Antichrist and you have marked off everything on my list. I think Tracie’s list is pretty much checked off too since she got her buttons flying and Phil plastered to Lina. Liam and Logan will be a bonus. So that being said in my estimation I think the sequel will be ready in October, my birthday month?!!!!!

    • Laura says:

      LOL so basically all you need are a few extra scenes in the first novel. Too late — The box has been opened and there’s no stopping it! This story has a mind of its own!

  273. janet says:

    Not true! I want 1000 pages and am all for a trilogy. I really won’t get enough of this gang. All kidding aside though, I think our mental health is at stake here so I will calmly wait for you to finish as long as you let me hound your blog. Thanks Laura from the bottom of my heart

    • Laura says:

      Thank you! My family thanks you too! When I’m writing a novel all I want to do is talk about the characters and you girls have given me a perfect outlet!

      • Tracie says:

        Oh I want to talk about them to! I have one more question answered by Phil, when he told Lina about the affair and she said “it will never be the same, you know. I will never be able to look at you the same again,” he didn’t answer her he went right into telling her Kim was pregnant. What were his thoughts at the moment he heard those words?

        • Tracie says:

          That leads me to another question. When Lina said don’t follow me after the pregnancy bomb and she went and got into the shower, Please tell me he heard her heart shatter on the floor of that shower. She wouldn’t have know he was there. When she left the room and said don’t follow me and he saw her devastation? His thoughts?

        • Laura says:

          a knife through the heart!

  274. Tracie says:

    That’s why I just posted a comment under your scene comment;, you probably haven’t seen it yet, but you response to those two questions is why I need those quite moments between them to help heal to the hurt they both share!

  275. janet says:

    Tracie, me too about chasing comments. I just read Veronica’s. I now have to refresh the top page to see if comments were added. I think I liked it better when I didn’t know the reply feature. I’ll try to post below below too. Gasp about apt building. Good catch!! Would have never guessed that one. You know that blue embroidered coverlet is ingrained in my brain now and as much as I love shabby chic I won’t be purchasing anything with blue flowers on it in the near future. Same with 🌹.

  276. Tracie says:

    I know Janet we probably need to stay at the bottom of the pile and just reference the comments above LOL.

  277. janet says:

    Your books are the best Laura. Just too mature for a teenager but I will post here when she gets into college and she holds up her first romance novel- anything by Laura Branchflower. Bahaha. I’m one clicking on cara McKenna now. Isn’t Anne Calhoun considered erotica? Not sure but I read most of hers. I also don’t mind m/m romance if it’s kindle Alexander.

    • Laura says:

      LOL You should probably start her with a Harlequin (an old one)
      I think it took Jane Austen 18 years to write Pride and Prejudice. Every sentence was written and rewritten
      I took me 6 weeks to write A Sense of Belonging haha
      It took over a year to write A White Picket Fence
      Yes Anne Calhoun is considered erotica

  278. janet says:

    oooooh. Just downloaded Hard Time. Love inmates. Love librarians even more. Perfect pairing. Gonna dive in now. Vi keeland will have to wait. Thank you for the recommendation!

  279. janet says:

    18 years?? I did not know that. 6 weeks?? what the what? How are you this gifted? It’s not right. Do you mean 6 months or 6 weeks? Also, for the longest time I was so against reading 50 but once I read it, I compared it to harlequin on crack. It had all the old harlequin feels for me with a lot detailed OTT sex. I loved it! My husband was so disappointed I gave in and read it but I actually bought those on paperbacks to keep forever. Tracie, did you discuss the books with your daughter afterwards? blush. LOL

    • Tracie says:

      Well yes….but Hailee would not let me go to the movies with her. She said mama that would be way to weird, so she went with her crew and I went with mine LOL!

  280. janet says:

    LOL. Oh I can’t watch the movie. The main character Jamie Dornan was a miscast imo. He looks just like one of my sons BFF! I just can’t. Plus he’s not broody. He is too happy for me. I do like Dakota Johnson though. Ok. let’s stop our rambling for today so we can be fresh to grill Laura and torture her tomorrow. I feel bad that others have to read our comments to get to the answers but I adore our exchanges so much. Forgive us!

  281. Laura says:

    I threw myself into A Sense of Belonging when I lost my almost 14-year-old Boston Terrier. I had lost my mom several months earlier and I was so sad. A Sense of Belonging was my escape — I basically wrote nonstop. I lived on about four hours sleep a night for six weeks. I reread it, added a couple of scenes and it was done. I dedicated it to my dog — Joey. Just writing this makes me miss him.

    • Veronica says:

      That is so sad, it must have been so hard! Did writing help you grieve?

    • Tracie says:

      Awww Laura that made me sad for you sweetie….I’m very attached to my dogs too! I’ve got a miniature Labradoodle that I’ve had for 13 years and she is losing her sight and hearing….Then I have my gorgeous German Shepherd….They love their mama too! LOL

  282. Veronica says:

    Hello, sorry Laura but you mentioned Kim falling in love with Phil? It that love though, because Does Kim really know what love isp? She seems malicious and slightly off key. She seems like she loves the chase and forbidden fruit. I feel like she becomes obsessed easily and does not like to lose. I can’t imagine her love is real or deep or that Phil is her first married guy? Or that she even really loves him? So is she not just besotted and delusional?

    • Laura says:

      She thinks she loves him. I doubt her capacity to love is the same as Lina’s but to her it’s love.

      • Veronica says:

        Really? Ha if that’s her version of love I pity and fool who takes her on. Did she not flag up crazy signals when her and Phil got together?

        • Laura says:

          It’s funny you’re asking this right now because at this exact moment I am writing a scene where Phil is discussing Kim with her sister. My mom used to say people can bring out the best or worst in another person. Maybe Phil just brings out the worst in her.

          • Veronica says:

            Ha ha so random! I do agree, there are
            People that get you worked up or bring out your worse qualities! However, you have to have those nasty parts
            To be built on. I’m not saying Kim is evil, but I would say she is a natural bitch. To literally laugh in the face of a woman you broke and scheme to break up a family and willingly hurt people no matter the cost, you are not a good person and not completely sane. I would say anyone who does not do what Kim wants gets the same treatment. Also, from the hints of her lack of parenting I would say she naturally lacks empathy and is selfish!

          • janet says:

            wait. Phil is discussing Kim with her sister. Kim has a sister? gasp. I thought for sure she would be an only child. Spoiled rotten bratty only child who refused to share any of her toys as a girl and as a woman.

          • Tracie says:

            Remember Janet, Laura said we would meet her family in the sequel….

          • Tracie says:

            Janet that is where Kim made her mistake. Unbeknownst to Kim, her thoughts and beliefs were moot to Phil and she took his physical need for emotional. Now, Phil has seen Kim’s true colors and is probably wondering what he is dealing with and where does her actual mental stability really stand. His main concern now (my opinion) is protecting his wife and children, to include Liam.

        • janet says:

          Laura told us she is young, smart, and beautiful. Guys falling all over her. and here’s the key word. Narcissist. She really believes he would leave a marriage of 25 years for her. Most women would think how can I break through a 25 year old bond? Kim thinks I’m here just in time to save Phil from his boring life and give him a new beginning.

        • Tracie says:

          Laura could it possibly be just desperation wanting something (Phil) that she can’t have (spoiled, entitled personality)..is she confusing love with lust. My own opinion, I think Kim not only wants Phil, but the perks that goes with him. Lina’s car, her house, Phil’s love, etc…Would she still want Phil if he was poor or middle class?

          • janet says:

            Yes Laura told us. I thought she meant her parents. Also, part of Phil’s appeal is that he is mature and a partner. No she doesn’t want him if he’s middle class. Who’s going to get her the Harry Winston? I think she’s already used to the good life. She’s successful on her own and likes the fact that she can’t control Phil. Just ugh. Veronica, I called her antichrist to Laura yesterday.

          • Laura says:

            WARNING — The first time Kim saw Phil he was giving a closing argument in New York City — she was “mesmerized”

    • janet says:

      Hi Veronica, I will write the book recs here. Little hesitant because of the subject matter but I understand wanting to compare. Phil is going to come off as an angel after these books. Maybe when Tracie has time she can chime in. So we all read SP west’s Life Without You. Roxanne Winkler Admissions of guilt(writing a bit choppy but similiar theme), I liked Barbie Bohrman’s Promise Me(cheating but not affair though), Caroline Robert’s The Torn up Marriage(This may have diff. title on amazon now), Jolyn Palliata, A Modern Love Story. Chick lit-Susan Lewis, The Mill house and Tess Stimson’s The Adultery Club. So many more but start here if you haven’t read them

      • Veronica says:

        Ha ha literally read all the same books as you so random! My least favourite were probably The Adultery Club and Mill House as Well as Life Without you as all the heros were beyond redemption in my eyes! Does make you appreciate Phil! What did you think of the books? Thanks for telling me!

        • janet says:

          I liked torn up marriage and sp west because the writing was good. Like you hated mill house and was disgusted with adultery club. Waste of my time. I can’t eemeber the title but there’s one where it’s set in England and the couple is close to retiring and the wife finds out about the affair and there’s a baby involved? The husband is a lawyer too. Not hea. I liked that one. Couldn’t find it under my read pile

          • Veronica says:

            I think I know the one ‘Accidents of Love’. What’s your name on goodreads?

          • janet says:

            Oh yes! So funny. I think that’s the one. I just follow people. I don’t post anywhere other than here and most of it is want to read pile so I can keep track. I think we must follow the same people. Sounds like you’ve a read a lot of cheating couples though. I’m now reading what Laura recommended. Cara McKenna. Hard time. It’s good. Try that if you haven’t. Turns out I read one of hers long ago but forgot all about it

  283. janet says:

    Crap. Thank you for sharing. I’m glad you had that outlet and therapy to relieve some of the pain and your loss. My outlet is reading. Clung to books while I went through multiple miscarriages and when I was on full bed rest with my twins I couldn’t concentrate on anything but somehow I could absorb the words in a book. So now wherever I got or whatever situation I’m in I make sure my kindles are in within my reach. I got up to 30% on Hard Time. Love it so far-darker and bit melancholy. Totally my cuppa.

  284. Veronica says:

    Also,
    I know it’s been addressed before! But are we
    Going to see Phil realising he is an idiot for not using protection with his mistress. I know men do it but I always marvel at their stupidity at putting their trust in a woman committing adultery with th to be on the pill! They could easily trap them! As an intelligent man I thought Phil would be savvy enough to use condoms for goodness sake! If not for him then to make sure he did not pick up on any diseases to give his wife! I’m sure he hardly thought Kim was a virgin! Sorry just stupidity is infuriating in intelligent people when it could hurt others!

    • Laura says:

      I do my best to write realistic characters. I don’t always like what they do or how they behave, but they are real. I find Phil one of my most authentic characters. The leading man in a story about an affair will clearly have flaws

      • Veronica says:

        That is so true! I agree because I have read so many stories of infidelity where the men have not worn condoms with the mistresses, so common and so silly! You have written him as a real flawed person which does work perfectly! Sorry ranting but this book really got all my emotions going! Thank you so much for answering!

        • Tracie says:

          Veronica it boils down to Phil putting his lust over reason. He was physically sucked in and trusted the wrong person. I also wonder if they had any terms between them…physical and that is it. Phil had to know somewhere in the back of his mind that at some point the affair would have to end. Laura said the pink tie incident was the first time his two worlds collided. I bet after his re-connection with Lina, he wished he hadn’t lost his THINKING CAP…LOL

          • Veronica says:

            Ha h so true! Does make sense! Just what to shake him, but think it’s all becoming clear
            To him!

          • janet says:

            ditto. Phil put Phil first and hates wearing condoms because it ruins his pleasure. Kim on her best behavior says she’s on the pill, I don’t think Phil thought beyond that. He wasn’t thinking with his first head. Ok that damn stupid pansy ass tie. lol

          • Laura says:

            This will actually be addressed in the sequel

    • Tracie says:

      Laura your best is awesome…they are as realistic as they get!!!

  285. janet says:

    LOl Veronica,

    Those are the books that came up. Half of them I don’t even remember the author. I read a decent one where a couple is older if you don’t mind reading about a diff generation. It was my fist time. Also, there’s Julie N Ford’s The woman he Married, and Michelle Reid’s The Ultimate Betrayal(it’s a short harlequin but really good). CL Knopf, The Affair. Natascha Holloway, Splintered Memory. Sarah Pekkanen, The Ever After

    • Veronica says:

      Ha ha so funny we have the same list! I like older couples as well, their actions are usually more through your and mature! I have read literally the same ones you have! Some were great
      Some not so much! That’s why it’s a breath of fresh air seeing a hero realise his mistake and only love one woman!

  286. Tracie says:

    Janet another wrong placement of my reply..it should of been below your comment not above ugh…..It’s above your 12:34 comment….

  287. janet says:

    Right, we all picked the book up knowing the subject matter and we are all invested in the outcome! One thing Phil is not is wishy washy. We know where he’s heart lies.

  288. Tracie says:

    Laura I always wondered this too….after Phil came home (Apr-Jul), did they ever have a minute to get away together, and discuss all the changes that would incur in their lives. In Chapter 47, when Lina asked “How do we go back, so much has changed.” Her thoughts going to his new son. So somewhere between that and Alice’s wedding they had to talk. I just asked because if there was something that wouldn’t compromise the sequel, it would be fun to see…if it would compromise keep close hold…LOL

  289. janet says:

    Tracie, Phil is talking to Kim’s sister! What does this imply? He has to reach out to the sister to talk some sense into Kim? He refuses to have one on one contact with Kim so the sisters the mediator? The sister has to be the one with all her faculties in order!

    • Tracie says:

      Janet who knows what Kim’s actual behavior might be in the sequel, I don’t even want to guess…but her sister unlike Kim, could possibly be concerned with Kim’s possessive behavior with Phil (moving down the road) and having a heart to heart with him. That’s why I asked the question why back about her parents and siblings. Plus, Liam is her nephew…..that’s another family situation Phil will have to navigate. Gawd, can you imagine if they have a joint birthday all that family around Lina and her kids. This is where I would need Grandma Alice to start singing the old Coca-Cola Theme Song: I’d like to teach the world to sing in Perfect Harmony….everybody sing!! LOL

  290. janet says:

    Laura!! The warning gave me goosebumps. Is this part of the sequel? Tracie, hold my hand right now!

    • Laura says:

      yes, Tracie told me I have to put the word warning before I give anything away about the sequel

    • Laura says:

      There won’t be any boiling rabbits — remember realistic characters. I can only write from my own sphere — fortunately, I’ve never known any psychopaths

    • Tracie says:

      Got you Janet…your knuck’s should be white… Oh this is going to get so good….Thanks for the warning word Laura…I need that to cope…LOL

  291. janet says:

    Yes there’s more than meets the eye regarding the tie. We talked about this theory. If Phil is as good as Tony I Can’t even! Did you decide to add a scene of Phil in court? Lord have mercy on all of us

  292. Tracie says:

    Mesmerized…is going to cost her dearly. But my hormone side hawwwwwwt….. (not about Kim…but him in court). She saw him before she worked at the law firm…she is strategically placing herself. Come on Kim….(Jaw’s theme playing in my head)…

    • Janet says:

      She saw her future in his closing statement. Ahhh. The relentless pursuing from the getgo makes sense. Changing jobs so she can call dibs on him.

  293. janet says:

    Lol Tracie. With your unique sense of humor you may end up as a character in one of Laura’s future books! I can’t see the birthday kumbaya or Coca Cola happening here. Laura said never in a million years will we see a big family pic. Phil puts Lina before Liam or Logan now. He didn’t even want her to attend the wedding and this was all before Kim showed her true colors. He won’t put her in that position ever again. Maybe at Liam’s college graduation or wedding. Not before and if Kim sticks around.

  294. Tracie says:

    I’m not talking about pictures…not happening…I’m talking a gathering for Liam’s birthday. I hope the families have separate birthdays, if that’s an option…

    Laura…Thanksgiving was Lina’s favorite holiday…will that be in the sequel?

    • Tracie says:

      I would be honored to be a character for Laura…Sister just so you know how to write me….I’m a cross between Weezer/Dorothy (Golden Girls/and for my own ego Raquel Welch….LOL I just cracked my own self up!!!!! If my daughter saw this she would groan and say…MAMA Please and fix your face your eyes are talking….LOL

      • Laura says:

        LOL Exactly. You are too unique to have as a character. I had to study my mother over a lifetime to get her down.

      • Tracie says:

        Thank you girls…I enjoy our banter so much!!! I’ll continue to champion the ones you do write Laura…..

    • Laura says:

      Not sure. Hopefully.

  295. janet says:

    You make me laugh out loud every single day. God bless your beautiful
    Soul! I’m sure you are hotter than Raquel Welch!

  296. Tracie says:

    In my mind Janet baby..in my mind…I’m actually 54 years old, 5’2″ and 130….Every time my boss tries to give me a tasker, I remind him, I hired on as a sex symbol, not to actually do a job!!!! LOL Got that one from my mom, she used it for years…..I live life ever day and try to laugh a whole lot!!!!!

  297. Veronica says:

    Sorry if I’m asking stupid questions! But are we getting some of Kim’s POV in this book?

  298. Tracie says:

    Veronica (my opinion) I don’t think we will. I think we will get her comments (basic conversation) like we got between Lina and others in the first book.

  299. janet says:

    Laura, does Phil know about your warning? How does he know? From Kim’s sister or from Kim herself? Also when there’s a phone convo between Phil and Kim in Ch 15, Lina asks why kim calls when she knows he’s home and how often he talks to her and he said not often but more than he likes. What did he mean? Kim was still working at the firm. Was she bothering him at work? Calling him? Also why so late when she knows he’s home? For that exact reason? She could have told him about attending the wedding via text no?

    • Laura says:

      I’m not telling… don’t want to ruin the scene.

      Kim is selfish so she calls Phil whenever she feels like it. And yes she could have texted him but she wanted to hear his voice.

  300. janet says:

    Fair enough. I’m sure this continues using Liam as an excuse. I would love for Kim to meet Adele. Imagine that encounter!

    • Laura says:

      Kim is a graduate of Columbia Law School — not easily intimidated

      • Tracie says:

        I knew she wouldn’t be intimidated the moment you wrote about Kim’s eyes on the dance floor and what she said to Lina….But..Oh my the slap from our girl Lina, also said bring it on…..Janet, Lina will play this hand…I don’t think she will need any help from Adele…That is her man and her family…Pride before a fall..Kim better look for a safe place to land….

  301. Tracie says:

    Janet do you think she might have went to the wedding to see if Phil really told Lina the truth about her and the baby??? Also, Phil giving Lina that slow kiss and not taking his hand off her at the wedding (my opinion) spurred Kim on…Her jealousy was probably on overdrive. Kim wanted to size Lina up and again my opinion, see Phil and Lina’s interactions. Laura said the reason Phil said this isn’t about Lina (Chapter 15) and shut down that line of conversation, was because Kim was trying to find out what Lina thought about the pregnancy (None of her business). I also bet he wouldn’t talk with her at work, reasoning for the house calls. I also wouldn’t have left when he was still talking to Kim. Wonder what was said when Lina left the side of the house????

    Laura…was Phil trying to send a message (loving, touching and squeezing Lina) to Kim at the wedding? She had to know watching them, that he was in love with Lina.

    • Laura says:

      In those moments Phil was being authentic. He was just trying to reassure Lina. He wasn’t really giving thoughts to anyone else. He knew Lina was a bit wound up too.

  302. Tracie says:

    Like me…tighter than a bow string. Laura I can actually feel the anticipation in my gut for this sequel…LOL

    • Laura says:

      I have to say it’s unfolding before my eyes. I thought I knew exactly where it was going and I was wrong. The reason the reader can’t predict where it’s going is because the writer doesn’t know either lol

  303. Tracie says:

    That is awesome though…You are not just putting words on a page without feeling or much thought (that makes you unique), you are shifting gears as the characters progress in your mind. I tell my team all the time, think out of box, you are above standard!!!! That is why your books grab me…you think out of the box!!!!

  304. janet says:

    Oh brother about Adele. I just want our Lina to have supporters other than Phil and Adele has street creds. Who can intimidate this woman? I don’t even think Phil. You knew where it was going and you were wrong? That makes me nervous! I’m wound up tight too.
    Regarding Kim at the wedding.. let’s see. She’s confident and selfish. She was probably glad to see Lina came with Phil. What she wasn’t expecting was Phil ignoring her and showing his love for Lina. I don’t think she saw that coming. I’m so glad to hear phil kissed Lina for Lina and not to show off to Kim. So good!

  305. Tracie says:

    Yes it is Janet…I just need Phil and Lina wrapped and tangled at the end of this book with a big HEA and may be an extended Epilogue with them on Social Security and swimming naked!!!!

    • Tracie says:

      I’m really hoping Liam isn’t used as a pawn…I’m also wondering/hoping that the Hunter kids have a better appreciation of their mother, and a softer spot for Liam, when Kim is showing her true self as both a person and a mother.

      Laura you can confirm that comment about the kids, if you want LOL!!!!

    • Laura says:

      LOL I’ll probably be writing about this family for the rest of my life.

  306. janet says:

    You will get your HEA! Social security scene can come in Logan’s book. Not yet! Remember what Laura said about Kim not being a good mom because she’s self absorbed? I have a mom friend who is bit self absorbed. She’s on her 3rd marriage. I think Kim will use Liam as a pawn, it’ll be up to Lina give him normalcy.

  307. Tracie says:

    Laura you are probably tired of my what was Phil thinking questions, but it gives me knowledge and hopefully recruits some to Team Phil. LOL…After her phone call with Phil the next day after the text messages, when she told him it was hard to remember he loved her when all I can see are the words you texted her. When he hung up what were his thoughts? Then when he went into the backyard and saw Lina in the hot tub (I assume looking lifeless) until he got to her and she responded, what was he thinking?

    • Laura says:

      Text — he’s upset for Lina (but he feels like she already knows about the affair) so more furious at Kim and completely frustrated that they are moving in the wrong direction — he just wants to move past the affair.

      Fear!

  308. Tracie says:

    Laura I’m wondering if Phil is going to be transparent where Kim is concerned in the sequel, only with Lina though. I’m hoping they make decisions together, where Kim and Liam are concerned.

    • Laura says:

      you’ll see…

      BTW – after reading one of your messages today the name of the sequel came to me. Can you guess?