Author: Melanie Dawn
Series: So Much It Hurts #2
Release Date: February 27, 2014
Genre: New Adult
More Info: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon US
Purchase: Barnes & Noble
Out of despair comes hope.
Chris King never saw it coming…
In some ways, closing the book on my first love was the worst day of life. I was gutted, and yet I was completely at peace with my decision. I walked away knowing that I did what was best for her, unsure if I could ever recover.
Little did I know that one concert would change the entire course of my life.
There I stood, signing autographs and snapping pictures with fans when a familiar face in the crowd catapulted my mind back in time—Salem Honeycutt, once a balm to my pain and a calm in my storm. Yet again, her smiling face gave me hope.
Only one question remained: did she still see me as a wayward teenage boy who was completely off limits, or could she see the man I'd become…focused and driven, yearning for another chance at love?
For Salem Honeycutt, postpartum bliss seemed like a lie...
No one told me that I’d hate my baby when I brought her home from the hospital. No one told me that I’d want to put a pillow over my husband’s head and smother him in his sleep. No one told me that I’d want to slap every person who gave me the ever-so-cliché advice to ‘cherish every moment.’ No one told me that I’d despise my life the minute I became a mother, but I did.
Then I met Chris King, the kid who made me want to pull myself up from the dark recesses of my mind and face each day. This kid, whose passion for life and talent for music, touched my soul deeper than I could ever touch his. Chris gave me a reason to live.
I was once affectionately known as Mrs. H., Chris’s juvenile detention counselor.
This is our story.
WHO AM I?
Hi! My name is Chris King. Born in North Carolina and I am a famous musician in the band, Fifth Wheel.
Tell us your favorite:
Song – As a musician I listen to a lot of different genres, but I’ve recently favored a trio called Il Volo. They are an Italian pop group. They aren’t really my typical genre of choice, but if you know anything about Salem and me, you’ll know why these guys are my new faves.
Movie/ TV Show: I’m a pretty big Clint Eastwood fan. I loved Gran Torino. I don’t watch much television, so I don’t really have a favorite show, but Salem makes me suffer through The Bachelor with her. She also makes me watch The Voice with her, but I don’t mind that as much.
Band: I’m a big fan of Chris Daughtry. I also love Eric Church and Scotty McCreery. I can get into a little Ben Folds, too. Gotta support my fellow North Carolinians.
Cartoon Character: Schroeder from Peanuts. I love a cartoon who appreciates Beethoven.
Sports: Football, I guess. But I just enjoy the music of the halftime show.
Hobbies: Playing guitar and writing songs
Vacation Spots: The beach
Let’s dig deep
Describe your fashion style: Fashion? I say whatever’s clean, I’ll wear.
Describe your daily routine: Wake up late, head to the recording studio, and work late into the night. Unless I’m on tour, then it’s wake up in whatever city I’m in, beer, work on our set for the night, beer, spend a lot of time in interviews and signing autographs, concert, beer, after-party, beer.
3 major things you can’t live without? My woman, my guitar, my notebook full of lyrics.
If there is one thing you could change about yourself, what would it be and why? My ability to ruin a good thing by making stupid choices.
What is your worst habit? Alcohol. But Salem would say it’s leaving my dirty laundry in a pile by the bed.
Greatest fear in life? Letting down the ones I love
Most likely to be arrested? Well, I’ve already been arrested before. It’s not fun.
If there is one person you could bring back from the dead, who would it be and why? My grandfather. He was a musician too. He played music with Doc Watson years ago. My grandfather taught my dad everything he knows. I’d love to sit down and chat with him.
One of your most embarrassing moment? Let’s see…would you want to hear about the time I tripped and fell on stage? I mean I face-planted right there in front of everyone. God, it was awful.
Greatest regret so far? I try not to think about stuff like that. It depresses me.
Greatest achievement in life? Learning from my mistakes. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it hadn’t been for the people in my life who have loved me and supported me through it all.
Let’s talk dirty
Lights on or lights off? Either. When it comes to getting frisky, it doesn’t matter the position of the light switch.
Sexiest part of your body? Hmmm, that’s hard to say. My abs, maybe? I work hard for this six-pack, so yeah I’m going with abs.
Sexiest part of Salem’s body? She’s beautiful from head to toe, but I especially love her sexy curves.
Kinkiest thing you’ve ever done? I’ll tell you like I tell Jeremy…I don’t kiss and tell.
Favorite place to get down and dirty? I’ll take it anywhere…in the shower, against the wall, on the kitchen table. Doesn’t matter. But my favorite place is in the bed because I can fall asleep holding her when it’s over.
“Goodnight, Alexis,” I told her.
“Night, mom.” She gave me a quick hug and darted toward the stairs.
The moment she was out of sight, Chris hopped up and wrapped me in his arms. “You don’t know how much I’ve missed this, you in my arms like this,” he said, pulling me tight against him.
I sank into his chest, laying my head over the thumping beat of his heart. “I miss this too,” I admitted, breathing in his manly, musky scent.
Our bodies melded together as he cradled my head against him. Kissing me gently on the top of my head, he whispered, “I’ve missed you so much, Salem.”
I lifted my eyes to look at him. “Thank you for coming tonight. I know it wasn’t easy to get here, especially knowing we only have a few hours together.”
He looked down at me, smiling. “Baby, even if I had to drive all night just to spend one minute with you, it would all be worth it.”
My heart flipped in my chest hearing him call me ‘baby.’ It was definitely a nickname I could get used to.
He lowered his lips to mine. The hot rush of passion tore through my body the moment his lips touched me. God, I’ve missed him. I parted my lips, an invitation for his tongue to find a deeper connection.
He ran his hands down my back, sending shivers up my spine. The caress of his fingers across my back left me hungry for more.
Chris reached up, gently grasping the sides of my face and caressing my cheeks with his thumbs. His soft, luscious lips moved against mine. My fingers found their way to his hair and tangled themselves up in it, pulling him closer to me. He thrust himself against me, causing me to arch my back in response. A gentle tug of his teeth on my lip sent a flaming burst of yearning through my core. He was hungry for me, too. I felt it in the gentle pulse of his erection beneath the fabric of his worn-out jeans.
A quiet moan escaped my throat, triggering a frenzy of him clutching, grasping, and pulling me toward him. I could sense the desperation behind his actions.
“Salem,” he whispered between kisses, “what are you doing to me?”
Pulling away from his mouth, I asked, “What do you mean?”
Tucking a strand of hair behind my ear and sliding his thumb down the length of my jaw, he said softly, “I didn’t mean to do this.”
“Didn’t mean to do what?” I asked, my eyes wide with worry.
Chris smiled that sexy half grin that melted my heart every time. His eyes held a softness, full of affection and adoration. “Fall for you,” he breathed.
WHO AM I?
Hi! My name is Salem Honeycutt. Born in North Carolina and I am a counselor at a pregnancy care center in my hometown.
Tell us your favorite:
Song – Anything Chris King sings, but I have to say my favorite song is the one he wrote for me, And Then There Was You.
Movie/ TV Show: I love Titanic. I’ve watched it a thousand times. I’m also addicted to The Voice. Shhh, don’t tell Chris I have a celebrity crush on Adam Levine.
Band: Do you really even need to ask? Fifth Wheel, of course!
Food: Cow Patties
Drink: I’m addicted to Dr. Pepper.
Cartoon Character: Hmmm, I haven’t watched cartoons in forever, but I used to love the Smurfs.
Sports: I love a good Carolina vs. Duke basketball game. Go Tarheels!
Hobbies: I enjoy running. I’m thinking about training for a half marathon someday. But, first I’d have to give up soda and I’m just not there yet.
Vacation Spots: I love the beach and the mountains. That’s the great thing about NC. Best of both worlds.
Let’s dig deep:
Describe your fashion style: Comfortable. I like stylish stuff too, but I typically go for comfort. Oh, yoga pants aren’t considered fashion? Oops.
Describe your daily routine: Go to work, go home, take care of the family. That’s about it.
3 major things you can’t live without? My family, my e-reader, and my Dr. Pepper.
If there is one thing you could change about yourself, what would it be and why? I wear my heart on my sleeve. I wish I wasn’t so emotionally vulnerable like that.
What is your worst habit? I cry at the drop of a hat. It’s embarrassing sometimes.
Greatest fear in life? Losing someone I love
Most likely to be arrested? Never. I’m more likely to have to bail Chris out than get arrested myself.
If there is one person you could bring back from the dead, who would it be and why? My dad. I’d love to spend one more day with him talking about life, climbing the tower, and eating gelato.
One of your most embarrassing moment? The time I split my pants playing basketball with the guys at juvie. I was mortified.
Greatest regret so far? Wasting some of the best years of my life on a selfish man who had no respect for me or his daughter.
Greatest achievement in life? Carrying life in my womb.
Let’s talk dirty:
Lights on or lights off? I prefer the lights off, but Chris doesn’t care either way.
Sexiest part of your body? My eyes.
Sexiest part of Chris’ body? Definitely his ripped abs.
Kinkiest thing you’ve ever done? Alexis won’t read this, right? I’d have to say, handcuffs are pretty fun.
Favorite place to get down and dirty? A little sexy time in the shower never hurt anyone.
Can you tell us something we don’t know about Melanie Dawn? I’m afraid of butterflies. I know it’s crazy, but it’s true. To me, butterflies are the clowns of the insect world, and clowns are just plain creepy.
Why do you feel you had to tell this story? Chris deserved to have his happily ever after. I never considered writing it, but I loved Chris too much to leave him hanging like I did in So Much It Hurts. He deserved to find love.
What was your inspiration in creating the characters? I have combined many aspects and elements of various people I know to create my characters. It’s fun to watch them take on their own personalities.
What was your favorite chapter to write and why? I loved writing about their trip to New York City. It was fun to do all the research for it. I went to New York when I was a child, but now I want to go back and visit.
Which is the hardest part to write and why? I had a tough time writing the scenes involving Salem’s postpartum depression. I had to dig deep for some pretty strong emotions. I even cried a few times.
If you can be any fictional character for a day, who would you choose and why? I would be Salem, of course! Who wouldn’t want to be intimately involved with Chris King. He is amazing in every way!
Any advice to give to aspiring writers? Never give up. Surround yourself with friends who will always support you and encourage you along the way. It’s not the journey to the top that matters. It’s about the friends you make along the way instead!
Any message to your followers? Thank you for your support. Thank you for your encouragement. You all make this effort worth it! I couldn’t do this without the love and support of my readers. Thank you for everything! Love and hugs to you all! xoxo
What’s next for Melanie Dawn? I’m working on the third book in the series. I will be sending Alexis to college!
Hidden talent? My husband tells me I have a way of getting perfect strangers to tell me their whole life story. LOL
Biggest regret? I have a few, but I’ve learned a lot from them.
Favorite male body part? Smile
Last book you bought yourself? Undone by Rebecca Shea
Go-to drink order? Dr. Pepper
Shower song? Unanswered Prayers by Garth Brooks