League of Love: Part One
Falling for him is easy. Dealing with his high-profile life—a life deemed public property by his fans and the press, plus an ex-wife out for blood—now, that's the hard part.
Twenty-year-old Caitlin Walters was living a normal life. She attended university, socialised a little and had a good relationship with her mother and stepfather. But when her parents are tragically killed in a car accident, Caitlin's life is forced to change. The once carefree girl becomes sole guardian of her stepbrother. Giving up her university course to support and raise eleven-year-old Riley, Caitlin struggles to deal with her new responsibilities.
Her job, singing at a local Italian restaurant, brings Caitlin some peace. On stage, she leaves her life and its troubles behind. Feeling comfortable and sensuous, she is like a siren calling out to lost souls. It's on one of these nights that Caitlin begins a romance with Australian Rugby League captain, Brodie James. Brodie, not content with his so-called perfect life and struggling with commitment issues following a disastrous marriage, falls hard for Caitlin.
The relationship does not run smoothly for the self-sacrificing Caitlin, as she learns how to deal with Brodie's nasty, jealous ex-wife, a muck-raking reporter and intrusive but well-meaning rugby fans. Along the way she makes new friends, and awakens the untapped sensual desires of the woman inside.
Can this rugged mountain of a man really protect her, teach her to trust and love again? Or will the choices she's made in the past destroy her future?
Having managed to break free from an abusive relationship with a cruel and dominating ex-boyfriend, Australian artist Mandy Magenta—a.k.a. Amanda Smith—should be terrified when she first meets the enormous bulk that is Jonathon 'JT' Thomson. He is fierce. Not only is JT the biggest, most muscular man Mandy has ever set eyes on, but he makes a living playing the brutal sport of Rugby League.
So why, then, does Mandy's body go into lust overdrive at the mere sight of him? She doesn't feel a hint of alarm as the colours that exist in her mind, created and inspired by her own emotions and her artistic talents, explode with vibrant and passionate intensity. Could JT be the man to remind her that she is still a sensual, amorous woman, a woman deserving of love and tenderness—and can he protect her from the threats her ex has promised to deliver on?
A much sought-after, successful career hasn't been enough to bring happiness to his life—is it possible that one woman can light up his darkness?
Forty-two-year-old single mother Laura Harris has devoted more than half her life to raising her son. She remembers the concept of having sex but it's been aeons since she's actually been a participant—especially with a real flesh-and-blood partner. But it's time to reclaim her life. Her son is a man now, and the rising star of the Jets Rugby League team.
Their future is brighter than ever and, for the first time, financially secure. But Laura is starting to think agreeing to have dinner with Trevor Hughes could be biting off more than she can chew. Not that she can't see herself taking a nice big chunk from the absolutely gorgeous, thirty-four-year-old sports-commentator's rump—he's one prime piece of masculinity! She just isn't sure how or when the whole sex thing will become an issue. She can't even get past the what-to-wear step, let alone reach the when-to-take-it-off stage…
Trevor Hughes usually avoids woman with substance—he has enough of his own demons to deal without trying to care for anyone else. But there's something about the upbeat, sexy, one-woman dynamo Laura Harris. The woman is pure sunshine and happiness, and that's surprising when you look at what life has handed her. Nothing seems to dampen Laura's spirits, and she quickly becomes someone Trevor needs in his life… until misunderstandings come between them. Can Trevor put things right?
What's a girl to do when her fantasy is within reach? Grab it with both hands, of course—then try to live with the consequences.
He was her childhood crush, her fantasy man. Pippa spent her teenage years surrounded by players from the Sydney Jets rugby league team, the fit and muscular bodies that made up the team her father used to coach an ever-present part of her formative years. But he is the only one of that group of high-profile men who has ever caught her interest. From the moment Pippa first set eyes on the handsome future star, he owned her heart. Mitchell ‘the Rookie' Harris sauntered into her life and nothing has been the same since.
The problem for Pippa becomes twofold when she meets Rook again after years apart. Now there is the moral dilemma that, as she is signing on as physiotherapist for the Jets team in a few days, she is fully aware of the 'no fraternisation' rule. But then there's the reality that her heartthrob of so many years and dreams has no clue who she is, doesn't recognise her as the young girl whose heart he crushed years before when he refused her naïve advances. He wants her, and this could be her only chance to finally get Rook out of her system once and for all.
Now Pippa must decide, and quickly, whether to risk everything she's worked for. Will living her fantasy be worth the inevitable fallout?
Reader Advisory: These books contain references to abusive past relationships, including allusions to rape. There is also plenty of Aussie slang —please note, 'footy' in Australia refers to rugby league, not soccer!
General Release Date: 30th July 2019
Caitlin normally swam laps at the same time as Riley had his squad training. If she had to be up early to drive him to the pool, she figured she might as well do something productive with her time instead of sitting around waiting. Caitlin never put on weight. She knew she was lucky in that regard, because some girls were always trying one new fad diet after another, but she did like to feel fit and healthy. Caitlin had a hearty appetite and was almost embarrassed by the amount of food she needed to keep her body fuelled.
She was neither short nor tall and her long legs, average hips and small waist were all in proportion. The problem with swimming—although she loved being in the water—was that wearing a swimsuit made it easier for people to notice her D-cup breasts.
Firm and round, they appeared to stick out rudely and she thought they looked out of place on her body. Caitlin and her breasts had not got along since puberty, when they’d seemed to grow to an enormous size almost overnight. Her enjoyment of participating in sports had taken a beating at the cruel taunts from other teens. At one point, Caitlin had actually considered breast reduction surgery.
That, of course, would not be possible—at least for the foreseeable future. Not after all that had happened recently.
Caitlin fingered the bracelet on her wrist lovingly, and pushed those sad memories from her mind. She always revelled in the solitude of swimming laps once she got started. It calmed her to listen to herself breathe in and out while her arms and legs sliced through the water, stroke after stroke. Just being around water soothed Caitlin.
The other bonus of early morning swimming was that there was no need to worry about the harsh Australian sun burning her very pale skin. Giving herself one last pep talk about the water being warm once she got wet, she headed out to the swim deck, trying, as usual, to push her mop of hair under her pink swimming cap.
As Caitlin did some stretches in preparation, she noticed the players from the local rugby league team on the other side of the fifty-metre pool. Most of the players were walking up and back in a lane, laughing and pushing each other in mock fights. All except for him.
Caitlin had observed the giant of a man before. In fact, on many occasions she had actually sought him out with her eyes. Why wouldn’t you? she thought to herself. He was gorgeous—such a perfect specimen. Caitlin had watched him stretching his large body, which rippled with the mass of well-defined muscle that made up his impressive physique. Caitlin had also watched him standing, sitting, walking, running and swimming, all in such a skimpy pair of swimmers that not much was left to the imagination, and Caitlin had found she had a good imagination when it came to him.
On more than one occasion she had dreamt of him, waking to find her body sweaty, the ache in her core unbearable and moisture coating her panties. Caitlin had begun touching herself to try to ease that unfamiliar longing—quietly, discreetly, her strokes reluctant at first. The thought of masturbation had been disturbing, somehow wrong.
But not wrong enough to stop. On those occasions, she would inch her fingers towards that throbbing, hot place. She’d slide her hand down the front of her panties, past the layers of curls that covered her folds.
It was always the same. She’d visualise his broad shoulders and washboard abs and her breath would start to come in little puffs and pants, her nipples pulling tight. Caitlin always felt them forming hard button shapes even before she’d let her free hand touch them. She would touch and rub her sensitive nipples as she imagined his face—that sexy, yet sombre-looking face.
There was something about him that drove her to this point. Nothing and no-one else had ever caused Caitlin to caress her own body in such a way. This uncontrollable need was new, coinciding with her awareness of his existence. She’d slip her finger in between her folds. They were always slick and warm, and she’d begin to move that finger in a circular motion. Tiny sparks of something indescribable would start to form beneath her finger, her body striving towards some place, some ending to fulfil her ache. As she focused on the memory of his deep voice, which she had overheard when he’d spoken to his teammates, she’d imagine him talking to her, touching her. She’d pretend it was his fingers plucking at her nipples and his hand creating so much havoc within her body.
Finally, knowing she was nearing that peak that caused her so much bliss, Caitlin would find her clitoris, the place that held the release of that pleasure spike, and she’d rub furiously at it. Push and circle, hard and fast, assaulting her own body until finally the gratification came, a wave of pleasure and relief washing over her slick, wet body, leaving her breathless, boneless, sated.
Caitlin both loved and hated to remember those times she lost control. She’d heard that masturbation was a normal human need, but it didn’t make her feel any less uncomfortable with her own actions.
Seeing him in such a state of near nakedness didn’t help. Shaking off her silly, girly fantasies, her stomach fluttering in response to her wilful thoughts, Caitlin stepped onto the block and did a graceful racing dive into the water. For the first few laps she tried to find her rhythm, reprimanding herself for her body’s response to the man by chanting a mantra over and over in her head. “I don’t have time for men, I don’t have time for dating, I don’t have time for men, I don’t have time for dating…”
Previous forays into the dating scene hadn’t filled her with much confidence. These so-called dates were nothing but a bunch of octopus-limbed disappointments who seemed to think buying her a drink, or dinner, gave them the right to grope her at will. Just the thought had Caitlin angrily pounding her arms into the water.
Word Count: 153,953
Book Length: SUPER PLUS NOVEL
Genres: CHICK LIT
Sydney-born Donna Gallagher decided at an early age that life needed be tackled head on. Leaving home at fifteen, she supported herself through her teen years. In her twenties she married a professional sportsman, her love of sport—especially rugby league—probably overriding her good sense.
The seven-year marriage was an adventure. There were the emotional ups and downs of having a husband with a public profile in a sometimes glamorous but always high-pressure field. There were always interesting characters to meet and observe, and even the opportunity to live for a time in the UK.
Eventually Donna returned home a single woman, but she never lost her passion for watching sport, as well as the people in and around it.
Now happily re-married and with three sons, Donna loves coffee mornings with her female friends, sorting through problems from the personal to the international. But she's on even footing with the keenest man when it comes to watching and talking rugby league.
Donna considers herself something of a black sheep in a family of high achievers. Her brother has a doctorate in mathematics and her sister is a well-known Australian sports journalist.
An avid reader, especially of romance, Donna finally found she couldn't stop the characters residing in her imagination from spilling onto paper. Naturally, rugby league is the backdrop to her spicy tales of hunky heroes and spunky heroines overcoming adversity to eventually find true love.
A multiple ARRA awards finalist in 2013 & 2014 for her League of Love series, Donna is spreading her genre wings In 2015 with the launch of her new romantic suspense Haven Security Series and the re-release of her contemporary erotic novella A Fruitful Intimacy.