Friday, July 22, 2016

#BEHINDTHESCENES #Secretplacesrevealed #Bookexcerpt #inspirational #fiction #romance #wnlbooktours

Secret Places Revealed


A broken man, a woman on the run, a love that won’t be denied

Single—and very content--real estate developer Aaron Blackman is determined not to be in another relationship. He’s experienced enough drama to last a lifetime. The only thing garnering his attention now is his growing business. And he plans to keep it that way. Then Simone Herron waltzes into his life, beautiful and confident. Fighting to keep his promise to himself—to remain single-- he soon discovers that when it comes to love, some promises must be broken.

After losing her fiancé in an untimely death, Simone Herron relocates. She desperately needs to put the past behind her and start a new chapter in her life. While love is the farthest thing from her mind, she experiences an attraction to the handsome Aaron Blackman that frightens her. She's built a wall around her heart, but can she find the strength and courage she needs to welcome love again? To do so, she must conquer her fears and allow God to put all of her broken pieces back to together.

Simone Herron wanted to escape from the pain, and from life. At this time of the year, she always felt utterly lonely. Simone had family and friends, but it wasn’t the same. This was year number five without Joshua. As if she weren’t already miserable, the holiday season had arrived, with all of its cheery fanfare. She wished she could skip over November and December and head straight into January.
Pensive, Simone stared out her fifth floor Park Avenue office window in the center of Manhattan, New York—the city that never slept. Below her, hordes of people bustled to and fro, arms laden with shopping bags. Tourists gawked at the beautiful and spectacular views from Times Square to Central Park. Who wouldn’t love it? But her heart was no longer enraptured by its beauty; the Big Apple wasn’t the same anymore.
Simone turned away from the window. Even the business of the city and all it had to offer could no longer mask her restlessness. Something was missing. Could a move be the answer to her restlessness? It would keep her distracted and her mind off her personal life.
As a paralegal for a prestigious law firm, Armstrong and Armstrong, she worked with some of the most gifted and intelligent lawyers. Sitting in a leather chair, she mindlessly shuffled the papers. For the past few years, she’d spent her Thanksgivings volunteering for the dinner drive at Sheppard’s Gate, a women’s shelter. Christmas, was spent singing carols with her church at Faith Bible Center. When had her life fallen into this monotonous rut? 
Maybe it was the fact that she’d had to bury her fiancé a few months before their marriage…but that was five years ago. Could she still be mourning the loss after five years? Did a piece of her die with Joshua? She should have been enjoying life. 
Her life was like a puzzle, parts of it missing and scrambled. Joshua was gone and she was still alive trying to remember how to put one foot in front of the other.
People told her time would heal her wounds and it would get easier day by day. And they were right—some days. People also told her never to question God, but those that knew Simone knew her to be inquisitive. There were days she felt she had moved on and there were days when the feelings in her heart and the dreams of him were as real as the love they’d once shared.
She couldn’t understand why God had taken the only man she’d ever truly loved. Joshua was her soul mate, her friend, the love of her life, her future children’s father. The more she got to know him, the more she realized that meeting him had been something divine. He felt the same. They’d met while attending college in Manhattan. There was a connection between them the first time their eyes met.
She spent time thinking about what their children might have looked like. Would they have had his dark eyes and curly black hair, or maybe brown eyes like hers? The idea of not having a family hurt her to the core. Her parents were married for decades before her father suddenly died from a heart attack. For now, the dream of falling in love and having a family was tucked away somewhere in the back of her mind, preserved in the hope of a second chance.
Simone wasn’t sure she believed there was such a thing as getting back to a normal life. She accepted what life had dealt her and was allowing it to bring her to a place of surrender. She learned to accept that when life brought pain, God would give her the strength to go through it.
Simone became teary-eyed as questions swirled around in her head. Why, with all of her great accomplishments, did she still feel like there was a void in her life? She needed a change. A fresh new beginning would do her wonders. A move would make her feel differently.
She scanned her office. Her eyes drew to the plaques on the wall, awards she had received from her boss. Then she focused on the plaque on her desk, a gift from her pastor. Her favorite scripture was engraved, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose—Romans 8:28, KJV.” 
She knew God was in control, but sometimes, it was more difficult to accept when His plan superseded her own. She’d heard all the sermons. She was in all the prayer lines. She had plenty of oil poured on her head. But the pain, at times, remained unbearable. She was resilient, but felt weak, as though she hadn’t slept in months. Externally, Simone had it altogether, yet she felt detached. She was a fighter at the end of her fight.

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