Vote your favorite Book Boyfriend! The talented authors of Omnific Publishing are putting their best male characters head-to-head in a March Madness-style competition where you can vote on your ultimate guy! 39 characters will compete through several rounds until there is only one man left standing.
Character Name: Joseph Scott
Personality Type: Brooding and Broken
Go vote for Joseph Scott at Love Between the Sheets
Author: Shani Struthers
Book Title: The Runaway Year
Genre: Contemporary Romance
B & N
Joseph Scott is 28 years old and lives in the small village of Trecastle in North Cornwall, having moved there from London a few years prior. The reason for his move? Like Layla, whom he is soon to meet, a broken heart. A self-employed carpenter, he is tall with dark blonde hair and blue eyes. He also has a tendency towards moodiness and is more introverted than some women in the village would like him to be!
What is your ideal woman like?
Natural looking, not a lot of make-up or anything. A bit more country than city – which is the opposite of what I used to like, a few years back. Now, instead of blondes, I have a preference for brunettes although red-heads catch my eye on occasion. And a good personality, someone who likes to laugh, someone who can make me laugh, someone who gets that the simple things in life are the best. You know the kind of things I mean, long winter walks in the woods, sundown on the beach, drinking red wine in front of a roaring log fire … doing a whole lot more than that in front of a roaring log fire.
What do you like the least about yourself?
I can be quite black and white – I need to see the grey more in life!
What are the three most important things in life to you?
My friends, the place where I live and, being a carpenter, I can find a vintage ratchet brace quite sexy. I know - I need to get out more.
What music is on your playlist right now?
I like The Decemberists, First Aid Kit and John Grant – a mixture of blues, folk and rock. My mate Jim is the lead singer in a band – 96 Tears – and I’m playing their first CD a lot as well – it’s brilliant.
What is your favorite curse/dirty word?
Nothing cuts it quite like ‘fuck’.
How do you seduce and/or excite a woman?
Again, as a carpenter, I’m good with my hands. I think women instinctively tend to know that …
Where is the most interesting place you’ve ever made love?
The back of a red London bus when I was a teen. And I wouldn’t call it making love – making out – now that would be a far more accurate description!
Dumped by her hotshot boyfriend and boss, Layla Lewis quits her job and heads to Trecastle in North Cornwall to house-sit for a friend-of-a-friend. Trecastle isn’t new to her; it's a place where she holidayed regularly with her now-estranged mother. It’s also the home of Hannah McKenzie, her childhood friend. Hannah has tempted her with a place to live and a job in the local pub. Needing time to nurse her battered heart and escape her “real life” for a year, Layla accepts.
Hannah is a talented artist as well as a barmaid. She lives in the village center with her boyfriend Jim, a singer in a local band. They are happy together, or as happy as they can be, considering. Hannah loves Jim, but there is someone she loves more and it’s pushing them to breaking point.
Meanwhile, back in Brighton, Layla’s fiery yet loyal friend Penny seeks revenge on her behalf, sending a forged email that could damage her ex’s business prospects. Penny wonders if she has gone too far but is soon preoccupied with her own problems: the sizzle has fizzled in her marriage, and she feels neglected. After getting frisky with Dylan one night, she confesses all to her husband—and he’s been like ice ever since.
Over the course of a year, there is laughter and heartache as all three endeavor to rein in their tumultuous love lives—discovering you can run all you like, but if it’s love you’re up against, true love, good things can only happen when you stand your ground.
What happened next seemed to happen in slow motion. The rider tried to stop but couldn’t do so in time, although he did manage to avoid hitting her car. As he turned his handlebars hard to the right, his tires lost grip on the wet road and he flew off, sliding some way before coming to a halt.
Layla sat motionless in her car, paralyzed temporarily by the shock. At last she managed to galvanize herself into action and fumbled for the door handle, her shaking hands making it hard to get a grip. When the door finally opened, another dilemma hit. What if she couldn’t stand? Her legs felt like jelly, surely they wouldn’t support her. Forcing herself upward, she was relieved to discover they held firm.
Once she was sure they would continue to do so, she bolted over to where the biker lay, placed one hand on his soaking leather-clad shoulder and said, “Are you okay?”
“No, I’m not bloody okay!” he replied, a pair of bright blue eyes meeting hers as he lifted his visor. “I’m a bit bruised and battered as it goes.”
Despite his belligerent words, relief flooded through her: he wasn’t dead!
“Oh, I’m so glad,” she said, letting out a huge sigh.
“Glad?” he said, sitting up now and brushing the mud and leaves off his left arm. “Charming.”
“Oh, no, no,” she stuttered, realizing what she’d just said. “I’m not glad that I knocked you over. I’m glad you’re alive.”
“Only just, I think,” he replied, needing a helping hand to stand up.
“Can I give you a lift somewhere, take you to the nearest hospital?”
“The nearest hospital? That would be in Bodmin, I think, about fifteen miles from here. I don’t fancy driving fifteen miles with you behind the wheel.”
Feeling a little indignant now, Layla replied, “I’m actually a very good driver, thank you. You’re the first accident I’ve ever had.”
“Lucky me,” he replied sarcastically.”
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