Series: How to Catch an Alpha #3
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Release Date: June 16, 2020
man. After leaving her fiancé and Chicago behind, she promises herself no
dating until she finds what she’s looking for. But meeting one seriously hot
and determined detective has her questioning herself.
past. It’s easy for him to sleep alone and focus on his work, but the moment he
lays eyes on Anna, he starts imagining sexy nights with her wrapped in his
sheets. Maybe it’s time to get back out there.
shows up to create trouble. And to make matters worse, a string of murders
forces Calvin to juggle his new relationship and his career. His worst fear?
That the two are somehow connected.
tighten my fingers around my cell phone as I put my bare feet up on the wooden
rail in front of me. I’ve lived most of my life in the city, surrounded by
skyscrapers and the constant sound of chatter and traffic, with air clogged
with the scents of food and exhaust. Now, sitting on the back deck of my studio
apartment in a small coastal town in South Carolina, with the ocean mere feet
away, the sun warming my skin, and a slight breeze playing in my hair, I wonder
how I survived in Chicago for so long.
playing in the surf nearby.
skeptical, and I remind myself she just doesn’t understand. Like everyone else
back in Chicago, she doesn’t get why I’d choose to go from making over $60,000
a year, living in a beautiful penthouse apartment, planning a wedding to a good
man—who also happens to be gorgeous—to moving to a town where I know almost no
one. Where I’m renting an apartment the size of my old bathroom and working a
job that pays in a month what I used to make in a week.
tone neutral before adding quietly, “I do miss you, though.” It’s not a lie:
Lucy has been in my life since I can remember. Our parents were friends, so we
practically grew up together.
she will, but as the months pass, it’s becoming more and more clear that she
won’t. None of my friends or family do. They don’t understand that I didn’t
just wake up one day and decide to give everything up. Every day for years, I
woke up and looked at myself in the mirror, disliking the materialistic,
shallow woman I was becoming. Until one day I decided to do something about it.
I’d go with her to bingo.”
distinctive male voice in the background asks her something, and I know it’s
Lance, my ex-fiancé, who’s a partner at her firm. “Sorry, I gotta go, Anna.”
chance to reply and then sit forward, dropping my head into my hands as I think
back to the look on Lance’s face when I gave him back his ring and told him
that we were over. He didn’t say a word and walked away, looking devastated.
The hardest part about leaving Chicago wasn’t the lifestyle I was giving up; it
was losing him. Even though I wasn’t in love with him, he was my friend. For
the five years we were in a relationship, he was a constant in my life, someone
I depended on for support, and he was one of the few people who understood the
dysfunctional relationship I had with my parents and encouraged me to take a
step back from them when they hurt me with their carelessness.
depressed, I pull in a deep breath, expecting to inhale the fresh sea air, but
my nose wrinkles when the distinct scent of pot hits me. I open my eyes, get up
from my lounger, and stop midway across the deck when a big puff of smoke
floats up from the porch below. I walk quietly to the edge and look over the
rail, wondering if someone from the beach has decided to hide out and get high.
But then I shake my head when I see Dixie and Pearl, my landlady Edie’s best
friends, who are in their seventies, standing at her back door and sharing what
looks like a joint: an object that seems out of place, given their grandmotherly
appearance. Both women are dressed like they’re about to go golfing, in their
pastel polo shirts and khaki capris, all capped by white hair that’s styled,
like always, in an array of curls.
“Oh shit!” while Pearl screams, searching until she finds me on the deck above.
white linen outfit with her short hair feathered back from a gracefully aging
me, and Edie tips her head back, smiling when she spots me.
apartment for rent in her house, and when I answered the ad, she invited me
over to view the space. I fell in love with it because it was right on the
beach, but after spending an hour with her, I also wanted the apartment because
it would give me an excuse to spend time with her. I didn’t understand why I
was so drawn to her at first, but something about being in her presence made me
feel hopeful. Then one night, over wine, she opened up about her past and told
me about her ex-husband, who she was with for more than twenty years before she
found the courage to leave him. And when she did, she found a way to be happy,
even when he and her family were all sure she would come back with her tail
tucked between her legs. I guess her story gave me the hope to fight for my own
her friend, who holds up the joint like it’s a trophy.
hall before Carol so she doesn’t take our table.”
what’s left of it in a tissue she pulls from her bra. “Who cares that you have
five grandkids when they don’t even like you?”
her, unsure if she’s joking. She, Pearl, and Dixie might all be older than me,
but you’d never know by the way they act and the things they say.
apartment and shutting the door. I walk between my bed and the open kitchen to
the closet and slide my feet into a pair of flip-flops before grabbing a plaid
button-down shirt and tying it around my waist. I learned the first time Edie
dragged me to the bingo hall that they keep the room a degree above
freezing—something that wouldn’t have been bad if I hadn’t dressed for the heat
and humidity outside. I stop and grab my keys, along with my purse, then lock
up before taking the stairs down to the driveway, where Edie, Dixie, and Pearl
cutoffs, which are short but not any shorter than what girls wear nowadays.
Still, they’re shorter than anything I would’ve worn a year ago.
and I glance up, catching her shaking her head at her friend before she looks
at me. “Anna, you drive like an old lady. You’re riding shotgun. Get in.” She
presses a button on her keys, and the doors unlock.
her red BMW convertible and pull the seat forward for Pearl and Dixie to get in
belt as she starts the engine and lowers the roof. As soon as the top locks
into place, she backs out of the driveway, and I’m reaching out for the handle
on the door when I hear her laugh.
even though I’m not the one driving.
she turns onto the on-ramp for the highway and presses her foot more firmly on
the gas. I hold my breath as she merges into traffic and then squeeze my eyes
closed as she zooms forward to pass in front of a semi. I feel the car start to
slow and open my eyes. I release the breath I’ve been holding as we take the
next exit and stop at a red light. When the light turns green, my fingers
tighten on the handle of the door, turning my knuckles white as she takes a
right and presses the gas once more. I start to pray when she hugs the bumper
of the car in front of us, and then my heart drops into my stomach when I hear
the distinctive sound of police sirens.
park. I look over my shoulder and watch Pearl reach into her shirt, pull out a
white tissue, and shove it under the seat in front of her.
and I focus on her and nod, not feeling cool at all. My leg starts to bounce as
we wait for the officer to get out of his car, and by the time he gets to
Edie’s window, it’s jumping like crazy.
fingers wrapped around the top of the door, then dark jeans, a black belt with a
badge attached, and a form-fitting blue button-down that’s tucked in, making it
clear the guy is fit. I slowly lift my head as I take in his broad shoulders,
and my heart starts to pound for a different reason when I reach his face. Holy
wow, even with his eyes covered with a pair of silver aviators that look
amazing on him, he’s still heart-stoppingly gorgeous. I stare at him, unsure if
it’s his dark hair, sharp jaw, or full lips that have me entranced. All I know
is it’s a good thing he has those glasses on. I don’t think I could handle
seeing all of him at one time.
his head just slightly to look at her while I keep my eyes on him. Calvin—that
name fits him. It makes me think of those old Calvin Klein ads with Marky Mark
that my friends and I used to drool over.
know why I pulled you over?”
little concerned with your lack of turn signals and the way you tend to test
the boundaries of your brakes when driving behind someone.”
closely had to hit their brakes and you, in turn, hit them.”
“I never thought of that.”
see you driving like that again, Edie, I’ll give you a ticket. And you and I
both know you can’t have any more points on your license.”
a pair covered with a silver tint.
need to respect my elders and demanded to drive. First, Pearl and Dixie smoking
crap. My mouth goes dry. I wave my hand in his direction and shake my head once
more. “They were smoking a cigarette. Even at their age, they should know those
things kill.” I can’t see his eyes, but I still feel them bore into mine. I
shift in my seat but try to keep my expression neutral. “I’ll make sure Edie’s
more careful when she’s behind the wheel.”
which forces me to tip my head back. “This is your last warning.” He taps
Edie’s door before he walks back toward his car. I turn to watch him, thinking
even from behind, his broad shoulders and slim waist are attractive.
getting weird. He’s handsome, and that happens when you’re talking to a
calculating look in her eyes.
that, you need to be checked by a doctor to confirm you actually have a pulse.”
shifter in drive, flips on her turn signal, and checks her mirror. The moment
she starts to pull away from the side of the road and into traffic, the car is
jolted to the right, and the sounds of metal crunching and scraping fill the
blue eyes belonging to Calvin. Holy cow, we just sideswiped a cop! I drag my
eyes off his and focus on Edie. “Are you okay?”
look at the two wide-eyed women in the back seat. “Are you two all right?”
I see Calvin bent over and looking in the open trunk of his cruiser. Without
even a glance in my direction, he booms, “Get back into the vehicle.”
come to me. “It’s not safe for you to be out here.”
bent position and walks toward me slowly.
out and wraps his hand around my upper arm.
tug free, but he doesn’t let go. Instead, he starts walking, forcing me to go
with him. When we reach the passenger side of the car, he opens the door and
urges me to sit.
into the car.
leaving me fuming.
Reynolds is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling
author whose wildly popular series include Until, Until Him, Until Her,
Underground Kings and Shooting Stars.
career started in an attempt to get the outrageously alpha men who resided in
her head to leave her alone and has blossomed into an opportunity to share her
stories with readers all over the world.