New Release / Cover Reveal ~ The Undisciplined Bride ~ Ginger Voight
23 years, Peyton Prescott was used to running the show. That went into
overdrive the minute she agreed to become a bride. Born into an affluent
Southern family, she was expected to fulfill her social obligation to marry
well, and found that unsuspecting groom in her pushover fiancé, Leland
Goodreau. He, like the rest of her family, catered to her every whim to keep
her happy, and she predicted a satisfactory, if not boring, existence as his
In fact, the only real human to stand up to this bridezilla from hell is Mateo
Bravo, one of the chefs she considers to cater the blessed event. Sparks fly
the minute they meet and out of sheer defiance, she hires Mateo and his sister
Naomi for every social gathering in the remaining months until she marries.
Mateo, unlike any other man she's ever met, doesn't put up with Peyton’s
behavior. With a masculine energy that she finds alluring and exciting, he
turns her entitled existence upside down by showing her she's not always the
boss. No one is more surprised than she is when she finds out that she kind of
Peyton decides to seduce, and then dump, the middle-class cook, just to get him
out from under her skin. Instead she finds out that there are a few things in
life even the great Peyton Prescott can’t plan.
Ginger Voight is prolific author,
freelance writer and optioned screenwriter. Her fiction is diverse, with novels
like the edgy, coming-of-age drama DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS, and the fun family
adventure for kids of all ages, COMIC SQUAD.Having grown up reading different
authors like Danielle Steel and Stephen King, Ginger has always been drawn more
to story than to genre. This shows up in her various stories. Titles such as MY
IMMORTAL and TASTE OF BLOOD are a delicious, heady mix of horror, suspense, and
romance.Genre romance, however, has held a
special place in her heart, ever since she read her first Harlequin novel when
she was only eleven. As a result, Ginger is making a name for herself writing
romances of her own, starring women who look more like the average American woman
rather than those traditionally represented in the size-biased American media.
Her Rubenesque romances were created especially for those heroines with fuller
figures, who can still get the man of their dreams if only they believe they
can. Such titles include UNDER TEXAS SKIES, LOVE PLUS ONE, THE GROUPIE TRILOGY,
THE FIERCE TRILOGY and PICTURE POSTCARDS.Ginger was included in the
best-selling book by Smith Magazine NOT QUITE WHAT I WAS PLANNING, featuring
her six-word memoir.
Tuesday afternoon, Peyton went shopping for something special to wear for her
first “cooking” lesson. She had plenty of free time to do so, given her future
sister-in-law, best friend and maid of honor was too busy to go with her to
shop for her bridal gown. She read Lissette the usual riot act before she
gleefully pounced on the unallocated free time like a hungry cheetah. Unlike
her quest for the perfect bridal gown, she found the perfect outfit to torture
Mateo within the first five minutes in the boutique. She rushed back to her
downtown apartment, loaded down with bags of fine clothing, read: lingerie, and
lotions and sprays to make her irresistible to the swarthy chef she hadn’t been
able to stop thinking about since the moment they met two days before.
dreamed about those eyes, and those hands, doing remarkable things to her body,
things that had never been done before. She thought about her own thorough
exploration over his hardened silhouette, where she’d taste his salty flesh
upon her tongue as it slithered mercilessly against him like a snake. Fantasies
overtook her at the most random times, such as wedding planning with her mother
and Orrin. He dared to mention Naomi and Mateo as possible caterers, and
suddenly Peyton could think of nothing else but the kind of satisfaction
promised during their “cooking” lessons.
had full faith that he wanted her as much as she wanted him, and it would take
only $1500 to get him out of her blood before she fully wrecked their
aspirations to crack into the country club set. One lesson, one tussle in her
white satin sheets… then she’d kick this no-name asshole to the curb along with
his sister’s soup kitchen enterprise.
show Mateo Bravo exactly who was boss.
took her time with a luxurious bubble bath, where she was tempted to get her
motor revved, doing for herself what no man before her had really been able to
do. But after all the time she’d spent fantasizing about Mateo, she decided to
let him take her from the starting gate to the winner’s circle all on his own.
Just thinking about it was enough to get the juices flowing, and she grinned
evilly as she thought about her plan to take that arrogant ass down a notch or
took her time toweling off, dusting herself with fine, glimmering powder as she
pranced naked throughout her white and chrome paradise of a bedroom. The king-sized
bed with an upholstered ivory headboard and button-tufted tailoring was
centered near the floor-to-ceiling windows draped in sheer, white curtains.
Millions of city lights twinkled just beyond the wispy curtains like diamonds
floating in a dream. Likewise, the bedspread was white, with satin trim. Fluffy
pillows were strewn across the bed and onto the floor, evidence of how fitfully
Peyton had been sleeping since Sunday dinner at her parents’ house. She dimmed
the chrome and crystal lamps on her end tables as she slipped into the halter
dress she’d purchased that afternoon. It, being hot pink, stood out in the
stark white of her bedroom, and she grinned at her reflection in the mirror.
doubt Mateo had not yet experienced a woman such as herself, and it was going
to be a night to remember before she booted him back to the other side of the
tracks where he belonged.
adjusted the plunging neckline of the dress before she touched her pulse points
with expensive perfume. She had just laced up her stilettos when she heard the
knock at the door.
halfway expected him to make her wait, but his punctuality pleased her.
he was as crazed to get her into bed as she was to get him there.
wore a big grin as she walked through the tiled hallway toward the front door.
This was the most brazen thing she had ever done. It wasn’t like she hadn’t
taken on a few lovers of her own in the last few years. Plenty of men had
sniffed around her door, and there were nights when she needed the touch of another
human being so badly she finally let him a few of them in. But Mateo wasn’t
wrong: none of her lovers had ever been able to truly satisfy her. Even after
she’d come, she longed for something else… something more. And no one, thus
far, had been willing to color outside the lines with her.
she swung the door open to Mateo Bravo, who stood before her in a well-worn
concert T-shirt and jeans so tight she could tell what religion he was, her
hopes again soared that she might finally get the satisfaction that had so far
eyes made a lazy sweep of her outfit, and only the slight tug at the corner of
his mouth indicated his approval. “Fancy dress for a cooking lesson,” he
commented as he waited for her to invite him inside, which she did with the
wave of a hand.
next time I’ll go more casual,” she offered. “Of course, I could take this off
brushed past her, touching her ever so lightly as he did so. “Whatever turns
you on, Princess. You’re the boss.”
breath caught and held as his mouth lingered just above hers. Mercifully he let
her out from under his spell as he stepped down into the sunken living room of
her million-dollar condo. It was decorated in gray and black, much more
masculine than the dainty bedroom she had prepared for the second portion of
their evening. The living room featured a long fireplace just under the
wall-to-wall window overlooking Houston, broken up only by a panel dead center,
where her flat-screen TV was affixed.
digs,” he offered as he glanced around. “Courtesy of your friend, Orrin?”
shook her head. “I decorated it. No one else could get it like I wanted it, so
I figured I’d put some of the classes I took in college to good use and do it
turned to her with a grin. “Used to doing things for yourself, I take it?”
body flushed from the underlying innuendo. “If you want something done right,”
climbed the remaining two steps where she stood in the foyer. “You did a nice
job,” he said. “I expected it to be more girly. You know. More fitting of a
chuckled. “Is that all you think I am?”
eyes twinkled as he stared down at her. “You tell me.”
gulped back any gasp the minute his eyes landed on her lips. “I think I’d like
to know what you think.”
laughed softly. “Well, I think that living room is not you. You decorated it
for your guests, so they’ll develop a stronger sense of who they are dealing
with. It’s classy, but masculine and powerful. That’s the vibe you want the
world to get when they deal with you, but that’s not who you are.”
dander started to rise. Was she really paying him $1500 to insult her? He
didn’t give her any time to retort before he strode purposefully toward the
stark black and gray kitchen, illuminated by soft white light. “Your kitchen
puts off the same vibe. You don’t want anyone to mistake you for some domestic
goddess. It’s here because it has to be, but not because you enjoy spending any
time at all here.”
that he marched off into the hallway, her jogging behind to keep up. He passed
her home gym and her library, where she did some of her PR work for her father
and her soon-to-be father-in-law. He didn’t stop until he opened the door to
her bathroom. The tiny tiles were either stark white or metallic, giving it a
disco feel. A chandelier was suspended over the round tub, where colorful soaps
and candles lined against the wall that featured a silvery fleur de lis
pattern. “This,” he said as he glanced down at her, “is you. Sexy, dainty, a
little gaudy…and totally feminine. You spend a lot of time here, one of the
only sanctuaries where you can be yourself.”
eyebrow arched. “You know, I thought I had over-exaggerated your cockiness when
just chuckled and opened the last door in the hallway – the one to her frilly,
fluffy bedroom. The minute he entered, his dark skin stood out against the
stark white. She could only imagine how his naked body would look upon her bed,
reaching for her, beckoning her to join him.
was so lost in that fantasy that his low, soft voice felt like a dream against
her ear as he bent down to say, “This room is where you are truly yourself,
eyes shot to his. It was the first time he had called her by name rather than
the infernal “princess” nickname. She was so stunned that when his finger
touched her cheek, she was frozen to the spot and unable to respond, much less
seduce him like she had planned.
this room,” he went on, seductively and hypnotically, “you can be soft. You can
wrenched herself out of his spell. “I am anything but vulnerable,” she said.
“In this room, like any other room, I’m the boss.”
stepped closer, and she could feel the heat of his body against her bare flesh.
“Maybe that’s your problem, Princess.” He brushed against her as he exited her
bedroom and stalked back down the hall.
stomped after him. What the hell kind of game was he playing? The demand was on
her tongue as she entered the kitchen, where he had pulled out a pan. Before
she could speak, he launched into instructor mode. “From the unused feel of
your kitchen, I guess we’ll start with the basics. This,” he held up the pan,
“is a pan. It is commonly used to heat food.”
crossed her arms in front of her. “There’s no need to patronize me, Mr. Bravo.”
grinned. “I like the sound of that coming from your lips, Miss Prescott.” He
put the pan on the counter and walked over to where she stood. He grabbed her
hands in his, turning them over to inspect their softness. “You’ve never even
washed a dish, have you, Princess?”
eyebrow arched defiantly. “That’s what I pay other people to do.”
dark eyes glittered as he stared down at her. She felt like she hit a nerve,
but he was decidedly pokerfaced. “Better watch out,” he said in the same good
humor. “You leave enough chores to the hired hand, and your husband may run off
with a maid who isn’t too good to get her hands dirty.”
snatched her hands back, which made Mateo smirk even more. He turned back to
the sink, filling the pan with water. He placed it on the stove, turning the
heat up to medium. He then leaned against the counter and crossed one foot over
the other to watch her. Long moments passed without his saying a word. He just
inspected her from where he stood. His eyes traveled over her face, down her
exposed décolletage, and down toward her endless legs, shown off by the short
hem of her skirt.
longer he didn’t say anything, the antsier she got. She ended up crossing her
arms across her chest, which she had originally bared for his benefit. To have
him so brazenly inspect the goods without crossing the four feet between them
made her feel cheap somehow. And she didn’t like it.
she turned the tables on him and inspected his form as well. Every inch of
clothing he wore clung to his body, which even in a relaxed state showed off
the impressive cut of his muscular form. His thighs were powerful and strong,
and his chest strained against the thin cotton fabric of his T-shirt. The bulge
in his pants hinted at a promise not yet fulfilled, and the longer they stood
there in that awkward silence made her fidget even more. It was as if both of
them were fantasizing about taking that next step, without either of them
lifting even a finger to close the gap between them and act on the undeniable
chemistry that crackled in the air.
could easily imagine walking over to him, or he to her, and stepping into that
strong circle of his arms. He would lift her up on the counter and step easily
between her legs, which would close behind him until her ankles locked. He’d
dive into her neck, nuzzling against the graceful slope, nibbling at her
lightly scented skin as her fingers crawled down his back and up again under
could practically feel his solid muscles under her fingers, which curled in a
tight attempt not to rush over to where he stood and climb him like a jungle
eyes were dark and from the hint of a smirk he wore, she knew that he was
following her thoughts exactly. The longer they stood there, the more they
indulged this erotic game of chicken. Neither was ready to yield the power to
the other by making the first move.
they stood four feet apart the entire ten minutes it took the water to boil.
When he moved to turn off the burner, she actually took a breath in relief. He
moved the pan onto another, cool burner, then he crossed over to where she
stood. “Lesson one: how to boil water,” he said with a slight grin. Softly he
added, “You just have to leave things alone until they get hot enough.”
gulped. Just as she was about to respond, assuming that the seduction part of
their evening had commenced, Mateo turned for the door. “Tomorrow night we’ll
talk about something more advanced. Like melting butter.”
was flabbergasted as she chased him to her front door. “Are you kidding me? An
entire lesson on how to boil water?”
shrugged as he tossed, “Like I said, we have to start with the basics,” over
his shoulder. He didn’t stop until he got to the door, which is where Peyton
finally cornered him.
you think I’m paying $1500 for a couple of ten minute lessons, you’re crazy.”
damnable shrug. “You agreed to two lessons per week at that rate. Nothing was
ever said about their duration.” He paused as he looked down at her. “But
you’re right. We haven’t taken care of everything.”
shut the door and then turned to face her. As he advanced toward her, she
unconsciously took steps backward until he had her pressed up against the wall.
His head dipped toward hers until their mouths were a breath apart. She felt
the hard lines of his body pressing into hers as he held back his kiss in sweet
torture. Finally she gasped, “What do you want?”
bent even closer until their lips nearly met. “The check,” he said with that
an angry snarl she pushed him away. “Fuck you,” she said again, and again he
replied, “Maybe someday. But not today.”
door closed silently behind him as he departed, leaving Peyton speechless and
frustrated as she scrambled with what to do next.