COVER REDESIGN & EXCERPT REVEAL
A LITTLE PILL CALLED LOVE by Jas T. Ward
Release Date: July 11, 2020
Cover Design: BookSmith Design
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Rylie Marshall has blue, green, yellow, and a mixture of pills that made her "normal." But her idea of normal and what her mother or society wanted her to be never seemed to match up.
She lives day-by-day in a fantasy land within her own troubled head and books. Reading was her escape whenever even her head denied her such a haven. So, how was she to know that one day, sitting on the beach, a book would show her the one thing she didn't have, but might change her life…
Mike Newport had white, yellow, and striped pills that made him capable of being one of the most cut-throat corporate marketing advisers his clients could have. Not even a life-changing tragedy could slow him down.
His days and most nights were spent with his head buried in flow charts, graphs, and spreadsheets. Busy was the best way--the heart could easily be ignored as it was dying inside his chest.
The last thing he needed was a vacation, but how was he to know that a carefree girl, playing in the waves and talking to the birds might give him the one thing he had been avoiding…
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“You are not beach appropriate.”
Frowning, I rolled my head forward at the sound of the voice and opened my eyes. In front of me was a woman on a bike with the sun behind her. She was in the surf with water up past her ankles and a faded flowered dress gathered around her legs as she sat astride the bicycle. A gathering of driftwood and shells was stacked in the basket on the handlebars as well as an umbrella. Her long, wavy brown hair was barely contained in a ponytail, appearing as wild as the waves behind her. I brought a hand back up to cup over my eyes to try to see her face, but the glare was too bright. “Excuse me?”
The woman giggled and moved her hand to motion to me and my clothing. “What you’re wearing. It shouldn’t be worn to the beach. Sand is probably really bad for those pants. And saltwater is not good for fancy shirts. So, did you wash up here and not get wet? A merman would have a tail and couldn’t wear those pants because well, that tail thing. Or are you escaping from bad guys because you’re a super-secret spy?”
My mouth opened to respond, but my brain provided no idea how to do so.
Perhaps it was the wide range of her questions or the sing-song lilt to her tone as she voiced them, but I was completely baffled and at a loss for words. I glanced around to see if anyone else saw the woman and the couple who sat yards away appeared to see her as well, so I knew I might not be having some sort of mental breakdown.
“Well…” I rose to stand and pivoted sideways to see her face, which was enchanting in a natural way. “As interesting as being a super-secret spy would be, I’m really just an executive who planned very badly for this getaway. It was rather short notice.” I took a step closer and trailed my eyes over to a pair of bright purple hi-top sneakers tied behind the bike seat before finding a set of pretty hazel eyes. “And may I ask why you’re riding a bike in the water? Saltwater isn’t any better for it than it is for my pants.” I couldn’t help but smile and add, “And you can’t be a mermaid because tails, using a bike with pedals and a chain seems to be a hazardous mix.” Not to mention it did not go unnoticed she possessed very nice legs and a tail would have been a damn shame.
The woman smiled mischievously and shrugged at my inquiry. “Why not? I love the water at the edge, and it feels nice. I thought my bike would like it too.” She leaned forward and crinkled her nose. “And the dry sand is bad for the bearings. Makes them sound weird and makes me want to put my hands over my ears. I can’t really steer the bike that way. It would be dangerous.” She flashed an incredible smile, which actually made my day just a little bit brighter. She then giggled and whispered, “And I could be a mermaid under a magic spell that allows me to ride the bike. Or the bike could be magic. I read that in a book once.”
I could not help but chuckle and thought about her response before folding my arms. “Good point. But isn’t the saltwater bad for the wheels? Aren’t you worried they’ll rust?”
The woman withdrew the umbrella from the basket, opened it, then twirled it coyly over her shoulder—but appeared to be completely unaware how it enhanced her magical reference. “Yep. But rust is just a sign of time. And time is just a thing. And things should never bother us. Most of them are just silly anyway.”
Her simple logic was appealing, and it gave me no choice but to laugh. She held her hand out as if checking for rain and I angled my head back to check for any clouds—finding none. She continued to hold the umbrella as if expecting a rain shower nonetheless, so I probed out of curiosity by saying, “So, sun is bright today, right?”
She looked over at me sharply, perhaps forgetting I stood there, and gave me a puzzled look. Her eyes then flicked upward to the umbrella as she bit her bottom lip and leaned toward me once more to whisper, “Rain is sneaky. I like to always be prepared. I don’t like to get wet.”
My brow rose at the response as I looked back down at her feet in the water, and the surf dampening us both with its spray. As before, for a few seconds, my mind could not find a single way to wrap around her words in order to comprehend a reply. I sputtered and brought a hand up to scratch my whiskered chin. “I think that makes sense.” But to be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure if it made any at all, but a desire grew to find out, one way or the other.
Still wanting to decipher more about this odd yet intriguing woman when she put her feet to the pedals and started to turn to leave, I sputtered, “Wait….”
“Mr. Newport? There’s a call for you, sir. From your office.”
I glanced back at one of the condo staff in irritation and back to the woman. But she had already biked several yards away and was singing some song about birds and wings, feather and flight. With a sigh, I watched her go before I turned to walk back toward the condo.
What an amusing and baffling stranger.
And yet I really wanted to talk to her more with the lines of the song she sang flitting through my mind.
Birds fly away, they never stay. Because if we hold them, you take their wings away.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ms. Ward was born and raised in Texas, Ward is a mixed bag of creativity spinning tales of paranormal, urban fantasy and even dark romance and horror; wrapped within a love story. She's been dared to write a few contemporary romances but even those reads have characters that are real and twisted by their creator.
Ward publishes her wildly popular Paranormal/Sci-Fi romances as an indie and her contemporary romances were picked up for traditional publication with Hot Tree Publishing in 2020.
A mother of three diverse and independent bold children, Ward prides herself for being the "Queen Niche' Bitch" which is her handy way of saying she sucks writing to market.
But her readers don't seem to mind.
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