Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors, where participants share excerpts of their books or works-in-progress. It’s a fun way to sample new books and find new authors! Be sure to check out their website. Today’s selection comes from my new release, The Book of Joy (the full synopsis is below). The Independence Day party is winding down and Joya has joined Shannon on the porch to watch the fireworks. This is the moment he’s been waiting for. How will it end?
Her smile didn’t disappear but morphed into something else, something curious, something more. Was it want, desire, a reflection of all the things he sought? She fixed her gaze on him, the fireworks going off, one by one, whistling into the sky, then bursting into lights and sound. Shannon found himself drawn to Joya. He leaned forward and closed the space between them. All noise around them seemed to die down and all people seemed to disappear, leaving just him and her. He closed his eyes and prepared to kiss her, but just as he was about to set foot in heaven, Joya pulled away from him.
“I’m sorry,” she said, and walked away.
Shannon wants for nothing except the love of a good woman. However, he is so focused on his career and caring for his elderly mother Evelyn, he doesn’t realize he’s missing anything. Until he meets Joya, the widowed daughter-in-law of a family friend. She is a loving, generous woman who brings a much-needed spark into his life; but because she is younger than him and still dealing with the loss of her husband, he is hesitant to approach her.
Joya, for her part, maintains a good attitude about her situation and is appreciative of the people around her—especially Shannon, whose friendship fills the gaps in her life that would otherwise remain empty. But after burying her husband, she isn’t sure she has it in her to fall in love again.
This, of course, will not do for Evelyn, who sees the potential for love (and grandchildren) in them. Nor for Gail, the family friend, who has her own reasons for wanting to match the two. They go to great lengths to bring Shannon and Joya together. But as the four contend with the directions their lives are moving, they soon discover that sometimes life is more about letting yourself be loved than it is about falling into it.
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