Today we are celebrating the release of Good On Paper by Jennifer Millikin. GOOD ON PAPER is a standalone, friends-to-lovers story!
$2.99 today only!
Natalie Shay never imagined a day like this would come. She did what she was supposed to do: graduate college and marry her handsome, popular college sweetheart. With the ink still drying on their divorce papers, Natalie tries to move on from an ending she thought would be happy.
When she feels a spark with her stubborn, charming best friend Aidan Costa, Natalie’s life becomes even more unrecognizable. Aidan has been her best friend for years, stood beside her when she got married, and has a notorious aversion to relationships. As confusion and denial overwhelm them, their spark grows.
Held back by a secret he has been keeping his whole life, Aidan decides to ignore his feelings for Natalie. Natalie’s discovery of his secret pushes them past the boundaries they’ve carefully constructed around their friendship.
For Natalie, this could be a second chance at her happily ever after. But when a person from Aidan’s past reappears, everything he has built with Natalie is threatened.
“Thank you,” Aidan tells our server, smiling at her. Flustered, she backs into another server, nearly upsetting his tray. Her cheeks pink and she hurries away.
“Way to go,” I say, pulling the celery stalk from my drink and taking a loud bite. “I hope she doesn’t forget our order now.”
Aidan shrugs. “Can’t help it. I didn’t ask her to get twitterpated.”
“Technical term. As a writer, you really should already know that.” Aidan removes everything from his Bloody Mary, including the straw, and lays it out on a napkin.
“Unnecessary,” he explains, motioning at the discarded vegetables before taking a drink.
I don’t agree. I leave everything in.
“So,” he says, setting the drink down and pushing it away. “Are you going to tell me you stayed up all night writing hot sex scenes?”
Heat creeps through me at the thought.
Aidan sits back against his side of the booth, his lips twitching with the laughter he’s keeping contained. “Come on. Confess.”
“You know I didn’t.” I grab my own drink and take a long pull through the straw. The heat of it makes me cough, and I reach for my ice water, thankful I thought to ask our twitterpated server for a glass of water alongside my drink.
Aidan watches me, his thumb running across his bottom lip. “Don’t you think it might be time you got over that?”
“Says the guy who had meaningless sex last night.”
He shakes his head. “Says the guy who had meaningless sex last night and this morning.”
I feign shock. “A two-fer?”
Aidan’s shoulders shake as he laughs. When his laughter subsides, he grows serious. “I think I’ve figured it out. You wrote a book for two people who don’t love each other. And no matter how many happy endings you write, they will never have one.”
Ouch. Aidan always knows how to get to the heart of a matter. If there were an arrow lodged in a tree trunk, Aidan’s words could be the arrow to split the existing arrow in half. His words are simple and honest. Painful to hear, and his accuracy even more painful to admit.
He continues. “If you weren’t writing for them, what kind of book would you write?”
I don’t respond, mostly because I’m not sure what to say. I grab hold of my straw and make designs on the surface of my drink. The red liquid dips and sways, little flecks of black pepper disappearing and floating back up to the surface.
What kind of book would I write if I didn’t write the happily ever after my parents never had? I…don’t know. I love romance. The angst, the desire, the tension, and at the bottom of it all, the one feeling that connects us all. Love. We all want it, we all need it. Love ignites passion and causes wars. It instills fear in the bravest of us, and the threat of its removal brings the strongest to their knees.
I want it for myself as much as I wanted it for my parents.