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Series: For Your Love #3
Published by Zebra Shout on May 30, 2017
Purchase Links: Amazon | iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | Google Play
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ONE LAST CHANCE
Deirdre Murphy has had her life planned for her since she was born: Work in her parents’ noisy pub in rural Ireland. Live with her family until she marries. Marry her childhood sweetheart ASAP, since he’s decided sexy fun time should wait for marriage. None of it excites her. But before her fate closes in, Deirdre’s got one last visit to her Chicago cousins—where she can spend her mornings in a peaceful bakery, keep to herself, and savor the space she needs…. Until she meets Tommy O’Malley.
Tommy is as tough as his city and twice as ready to welcome her in. He’s covered in tattoos, stays up half the night inking them on other people, and has a reputation for being good with his hands. And he’s heart-pounding, forgot-her-words, can’t-stop-staring exciting.
Tommy knows he’s the opposite of everything Deirdre has prepared for. But to watch her set herself free, he’s willing to risk almost anything…
Also by this author: Hot @nd Nerdy
Shannyn Schroeder revisits the boisterous O’Malley clan in Through Your Eyes, the third installment of her For Your Love series. Almost too-good-to-be-true Tommy O’Malley loses his heart to Deidre Murphy while helping her to find her true self in this tender and authentic love story.
A quiet soul from a domineering family, Deidre has long felt her life choices are not her own. Expected to live with her family in their rural Irish town, work in the family pub and marry her longtime beau, Deidre never found the courage to explore her own desires. When her boyfriend gifts her a ticket to America rather than the anticipated engagement ring, Deidre travels to Chicago to visit her family, where she quickly crosses paths with the charming Tommy O’Malley.
Tommy always regretted his failure to ask out his neighbor’s intriguing Irish cousin when she last visited. Once he sees Deidre again, he swears he won’t make the same mistake again. Treading carefully, but purposefully, Tommy wages a campaign: first, for her friendship, then for her heart. Family ties brought Tommy into Deidre’s orbit but their strong mutual attraction is what drew them closer.
Given the green light from her boyfriend, followed by a cowardice Skype breakup by said boyfriend, Deidre elects to explore her connection with Tommy. She’s buried her own desires so far underneath the surface she’s lost sight of her true self. Tommy is the first person in her life to ask what she wants, the first to see her. His charming smiles and laughing blue eyes, coupled with his tattooed body and artistic soul quickly weaken Deidre’s defenses. Unfortunately for Tommy, Deidre’s family issues and disastrous former relationship have left her unable to trust her instincts, and thus, not truly trust what she and Tommy share.
In Tommy O’Malley, author Shannyn Schroeder has created a near perfect romantic hero, with his faults only serving to make him more relatable. He’s the kind of character whose spark jumps off the page; Deidre, not so much. Her hesitant nature made it difficult to warm up to her and understand exactly what enthralled Tommy so completely. As Through Your Eyes progresses, the depth and causes of Tommy’s devotion become clearer to the reader, and eventually to Deidre herself.
While the tattooed charmer and the quiet Irish baker of Through Your Eyes, may seem like a case of opposites attract, author Shannon Schroeder does a lovely job of demonstrating just how perfectly these two fit together. Through Your Eyes features large families for both protagonists, many of whom have been featured in earlier books, but Tommy and Deidre’s easily, and strongly, stands on its own.
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He drove to the bakery and found a parking spot in front. It was near closing and the business was empty.
He walked through the door and a sweet scent filled the air. The place hadn’t changed much over the years. The fake cakes they had on display were different, changing with the times, showing popular themes, but the classics remained on a high shelf near the ceiling.
One of his earliest memories was coming here with his dad and Jimmy to pick out his birthday cake. His dad had hoisted him up on his shoulders and told him to pick any cake design he wanted. He couldn’t have been more than four or five. It wasn’t long after his mom had been killed, but the memory was such a happy one. He didn’t remember feeling sad.
That realization made him feel crappy.
No one came from the back, so he called out, “Hello? I’m here to pick up a cake.”
From the back room, with her head down, she came toward him.
“Cupcake,” he whispered.
She moved to the counter opposite him and turned her back to dig through a stack of order slips. Her reddish-brown hair trailed down her back in a ponytail. Without any greeting, she asked, “Name?”
She spun with the pink slips in her hand. Her light blue eyes were wide, and the sprinkling of freckles across her nose reminded him how cute she was.
“You’re back,” he said.
“Another cake for O’Malley?”
He lifted a shoulder. “There are five of us.”
“It’s good to know you’re not eating all this cake. I was beginning to think you had a wicked sweet tooth.”
“Uh, your cousin Moira told me you went back to Ireland.”
The papers in her hands crinkled, and a blush swept across her cheeks. “I did.”
“Are you staying long?”
“I’m not sure.” She focused on the slips, flipping through them, looking for his order.
When she found it, she pulled it from the stack and looked up. She waved it at him with a smile. “I’ll be right back.”
She disappeared to the back room, and Tommy sucked in a deep breath. This was it. He had another chance. All he had to do was open his mouth.
Why hadn’t Moira said anything? She knew he had a thing for her cousin. Maybe she was the one who’d put Jimmy up to making him get the cake. That definitely sounded like a Moira move. But to get Jimmy involved, that took skill. Moira was obviously better than he’d given her credit for.
Deirdre returned carrying a box. She slid it on the counter between them and lifted the lid. “Here you go.”
He barely glanced at it. No one would care if something was misspelled. His gaze locked on hers as she lowered the lid.
“Would you like to go out sometime?”
She stared for him so long, he began to wonder if he’d really spoken aloud.
“Uh . . . I have a boyfriend.”
“Oh.” The disappointment hit him hard. Again, he had to question why Moira wouldn’t tell him. This was the kind of pertinent information you gave a guy before he made a fool of himself.
“Your order is all paid for.” She nudged the box forward so he’d take the hint.
He scrambled for what to say to ease the tension. “Maybe you’d like to go out and do some sightseeing. As friends. You’re new to Chicago, and I could show you around.”
“Maybe.” Her eyes shifted away. It seemed no matter what he said, he made her nervous.
“Are staying with the O’Learys again?”
“I’m right across the street. Stop by any time.”
She nodded and he took the cake from the counter. Not quite the answer he was looking for, but at least she hadn’t totally shot him down. She didn’t seem completely uninterested.