At long last, I am happy to announce that the doctor is finally in! If you’ve followed along on social media, you may have caught the character introductions and excerpts and now you can find out how it all ends. Today you can grab your Kindle copy of The Love Doctor here.
Print will be available soon and if you’re interested in a signed copy, please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. Yes, I will ship overseas too.
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I have truly enjoyed writing The Love Doctor and I love the message of the story. I hope you all will too. I am also so very appreciative of the promo videos and gifs made by Mari Stark.
Promo video with reading.
Still on the fence? Allow me to tempt you with Chapter 1:
They hired them because they were the best. Sofia Delacruz had a special gift for bringing two people together and she and her business partner had just delivered, big time. Love was a wonderful thing and no greater reward existed than helping others make that once in a lifetime connection.
A victorious smile commanded her lips. Standing tall and confident, hands on hips in her favorite tailored navy pants with matching vest, she stared out the floor to ceiling window of their new twelfth floor corner office. The view of sunny Miami Beach never looked so good. Uniting Duke Cash and Alicia Hornbrook had been no easy task and she wasn’t ashamed to bask in a rare moment of pride.
Duke had been their first high profile client, the best hitter in the major leagues and star of the Miami Sands. Alicia, the team owner’s daughter, had sworn to never date a ballplayer, much less marry one. And for good reason. Ballplayers were often referred to as grown men playing a boy’s game who, on occasion, acted like ill-behaved children themselves.
Then, there was Duke Cash, who had embraced that stigma and taken it to a new level. His reputation alone had been a monstrous mountain to scale. But scale it, she had. With pick and rope in hand, Sofia had slowly, patiently, continued to climb. Despite each slip in Duke’s demeanor and every avalanche of failed opportunity due to the sabotaging of her plans with a not-so-brilliant thought of his own, she finally reached the peak.
It had required a heart to heart with the stubborn, brooding slugger to make it happen—why had he enlisted her services if he hadn’t planned to listen? Lord knows, there had been a number of clients who never had, but to her surprise, Duke had experienced the all-important moment of clarity. Soon after, she’d found a way for him to break the ice with the woman he’d been head over heels for and the sparks could be seen throughout the city. When the pair were together, there was no denying the match was true.
How could two people floating in the same social circle miss such an explosive connection? The thought had always boggled her mind. Heck, if he hadn’t come to her, they’d still be orbiting one another—Alicia keeping him a moon’s distance away and Duke helplessly reaching for the stars like a child on a dark summer night.
A deep sense of fulfillment rose in Sofia’s chest, then did a slow roll through her body like the very waves she stood admiring. The feeling never got old. Every time she helped another couple find the same joy she once knew, it was like experiencing a contact high. The crazy mix of pride, satisfaction, and exhilaration left her feeling the effects for days, though it was always tinged with envy and laced with the slightest touch of sadness. Her hand moved to the pendant that hung from her neck. Held delicately between two fingers, she gently rubbed across the golden bands reshaped into a heart, inset with the profile of a half moon. A diamond nestled beside it as a star.
Tiny flashes of memories would peek out from the corners of her mind whenever she’d see a happy couple. The somber mood would last only the briefest of milliseconds before she would once again be grateful she’d ever had the chance to experience a love that pure and true. Those days seemed like a lifetime ago. But like all bad things, she believed, if you persevered, you would find something good.
And she had.
Her journey through the darkness had revealed her true purpose. Things weren’t always easy, but she had made it to the other side. Now she was happy. She and her best friend, Reyna Jha, co-owned a thriving business and got paid to help others discover love. Life was good.
“We. Are. Ah-mazing,” Reyna melodically strung together the words with a rising pitch, ripping Sofia from her moment of joyful serenity. For a petite woman, she sure could make an entrance. “Yet another satisfied customer, Doc.”
Sofia turned and Reyna held up an ornate-looking cream envelope—another wedding invite. Always wonderful when a match continued to flourish. Great for business too.
Reyna dropped the envelope on Sofia’s desk, then added, “Margo and Van. That was quite the interesting pair. A socialite who loves to hit the mall and an introvert who only shops online. Damn nice job there, Sof.”
Reyna set her hands on her hips, highlighting the shapely curve of her waist that led to a tight, gray, knee-length skirt. Her “power stance”—that’s what Reyna had always called it—and the pearly white smile that accompanied it would get her anything she wanted eight times out of ten. Silly as Sofia had thought naming a pose, she had witnessed it happen often enough to know it was true. Seemed they were both brimming with confidence today.
The pendant was gently set back against her skin. Sofia abandoned the tranquility of a picture-perfect beach day and slid with grace into her black leather executive chair. A wry grin stretched her lips as she leaned back and clasped her hands behind her head with swagger. She spun toward her best friend of fifteen years. “They don’t call me the Love Doctor for nothing.”
“Indeed.” Reyna laughed, tossing her long, straight black hair over her shoulder. The dark color contrasted nicely against her olive skin tone and her white sleeveless blouse. “Let’s go celebrate. I’m in need of a drink and a stiff one. And I’m not talking about the drink.” A twinkle of mirth gleamed in light brown eyes the shade of a fine scotch.
“Oh gag,” Sofia groaned, but the chuckle that followed betrayed her display of disgust.
“Seriously though,” Reyna’s words fell out with a heavy breath. “If I don’t find ‘the one’ soon, I may enlist your help myself.”
“Rey, I’m not the Millionaire Matchmaker. I don’t recruit love interests. You know that. I merely help two people who keep missing one another to connect.”
“Potato, poh-tato. I’m sure you could make it happen for me.”
With a roll of her eyes, Sofia brushed off the vote of confidence. Her best friend was rather picky and despite replaying the very same conversation monthly, Reyna preferred to play the field. “I don’t know.” A sly grin took shape. “Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and the Palm Beaches have a lot of bodies to search since you go either way.”
Reyna narrowed her eyes at the joke, but then a heavy sigh filled the room. “True.” Her posture sagged as a pout pulled at her lips. In a blink, she shrugged it away. “But, guy or gal, I’ll know when it’s right. I’m sure of it. Just like I knew you and I would be lifelong best friends the minute we met in tenth grade science.”
“Because you wanted me to help you pass.” Sofia grinned at Reyna’s unamused frown.
“No, it’s because I know a gem when I meet one.” Her eyes held a glimmer as she smiled. “Now come on, we can wing-woman one another.”
“Thanks, but I’m fine,” Sofia said, dismissing the request. “I could go for a stiff one though, of the liquid variety.”
“Please, Rey, not tonight.” Irritation popped her bubbles of happiness. She abruptly stood and stomped toward the door. “I’m fine. And it’s not like I never date,” she added with a huff. Her fingers sifted through short, wavy locks.
“Who’s talking about a date? Just get laid. Have some fun.” Reyna slumped the minute the words left her mouth. Sadness chased away her smile. The air between them grew as heavy as the proverbial elephant in the room.
“I do have fun,” she snapped. Would the scrutiny of how she lived her life ever end? “And it’s not like I haven’t slept with anyone since…” A tired sigh filled the silence. “Let’s just drop it. I’m happy, okay?”
“Okay. Fine.” Reyna moved to her desk. She lifted her suit jacket to her shoulder and one by one, slipped her arms in. “What are you feeling tonight?” she asked as she approached, all judgement removed from both her words and her expression. “O’Malley’s? Maybe, The Fish Bowl? Oh, how about that trendy place, Rafael’s on the Beach?”
A soft smile formed as the cloud lifted, sending Sofia back into a celebratory mood. Tonight was supposed to be about their success, but was there any harm in mixing in a little research? Nah. “You know I love O’Malley’s, but in the interest of adventure and checking out new date places, let’s try Rafael’s.”
“Perfect. You got first round.” Reyna threw her a knowing wink.
“I believe I usually get stuck with all the rounds.” Sofia’s soft laugh carried throughout the empty room.
“That’s because you love me and I do such a kick ass job for you.”
Tipping her head left, then right, Sofia shuffled her lips side to side in contemplation. When Reyna’s smile dissolved into a taut line, a teasing grin took over and Sofia said, “I guess.”
Arms folding tight across her chest like a pouting child, Reyna muttered, “You’re mean.”
“Aww. Buck up, buttercup. I do love you.” Sofia leaned in and wrapped an arm around Reyna’s waist, pulling her closer until they were hip to hip. Though Reyna was several inches shorter, high heels put her on even ground with Sofia’s five-foot, seven-inch frame. “And I’m grateful you never used that degree in civil engineering.”
“I don’t even know why I got that degree.” Reyna shook her head and laughed. “I’m glad you gave up working in a boring lab and put my suave social and I.T. skills to use.”
Sofia hummed and lifted her eyes to the ceiling, chasing away the memories of what had sparked the career change. “Yeah well,” she returned her gaze to Reyna, “this kind of chemistry has been far more rewarding than the kind in a lab, so I guess we’re a match made in heaven.”
“That we are. Now let’s celebrate.”
Thank you all for reading. I cannot wait to hear what you think, so please review or drop me a line after you finish.
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All the best,