Always and Forever Love
by Lynn Crandall
The presence of a ghost in her life doesn't alarm Lacy Aegar, in fact it makes her happy. Two and a half years ago when her dead husband Nicholas reappeared in her life as a full-bodied spirit, she questioned her sanity. But with Nicholas' explanation that there are things about life that are not as she's always believed, she settled into a pleasant routine of working with her sister at their private investigation business and enjoying home life with her now 10-year-old son – with Nicholas never very far away.
Lacey's complacency and sense of stability is sent topsy-turvy when she runs into Jackson Carter, the son of powerful and influential business tycoon, William Carter. Typical of the Carter reputation, Jackson's slick new private investigating business is siphoning off clients from the Aegar sisters' business, creating financial difficulty. It's a recurring nightmare for Lacey, who has already seen damage done by the Carter family, and when she encounters Jackson, she wants nothing to do with him.
But things are not what they seem when it comes to Jackson Carter, either. Unbeknownst to Lacey and her sister, Jackson is fighting a battle to preserve his business, too, and his integrity. For him, it's a fight for his soul, and he enlists Lacey's help because of her unique investigative skills and open heart. When she uncovers a mole in his business, she also discovers that one of his clients' drug trials has been given the green light to go to the next phase based on falsified data. As they work together to save both their businesses, Jackson and Lacey not only face death, they must come to grips with their feelings about love and life.
Walking into the master bath, Lacey stopped short. “Geez! Now, that’s a bathtub,” she exclaimed. Her voice echoed slightly against the marble tile walls and gray slate floor. Jason waited patiently at the doorway while her gaze moved from one opulent element to another. A large white and gold marble whirlpool tub, deep enough to disappear in, was framed on three sides by frosted glass windows and a small garden of palms and feathery ferns. On another wall stood a shower stall sporting a gold rain-head showerhead and etched glass doors.
Hi, Uncle Jake.”
Jason’s greeting jolted Lacey out of her skin. Retreat was impossible. She turned to face the square shoulders, tall frame, and solid jaw of a dark-haired man. “Uncle Jake, I presume?” She wasn’t doing anything wrong, so why did she feel her as though Brad Pitt had just caught her picking her nose?
“I know who I am. Who are you and what are you doing in my bathroom?” The man’s voice was clipped velvet. His arm circled Jason protectively.
She stuck out her hand. “I’m Lacey Aegar. And as for what I’m doing here…”
“I hired her, Uncle Jake. She’s going to find Snickers.”
She looked from Jason’s cherubic face and up into the glistening brown eyes of his uncle and felt her composure melt into the cold slate beneath her feet. “Umm…I’m a private investigator. And your nephew has asked me to…”
“I think you’ve seen enough, Ms. Private Investigator or gossip columnist or whoever you are.” The man grabbed Lacey’s elbow and began to usher her briskly out of the room.
“But Uncle Jake—”
“If you’ll just hold on a minute I can explain.” Lacey’s face burned at the man’s insinuation. With Jason at his heels, the man swept Lacey down the stairs and was heading toward the front door, where she spread out her hands and planted them against the hard wood. "Stop,” she demanded, whirling around to face him head-on. “I’m not leaving until I finish what I came here for, and that’s to help Jason find his dog.”
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Lynn Crandall lives in the Midwest and writes in the company of her two cats. She has been a reader and a writer all her life. Her background is in journalism, but whether writing a magazine or newspaper story or creating a romance, she loves the power stories hold to transport, inspire, and uplift. In her romances, she focuses on vulnerable, embraceable characters who don't back down. She hopes that readers discover, over and over, stories of ordinary people who face ordinary life challenges and are transformed by extraordinary love.
This story was NOT what I expected at all! When you start reading, you think you're reading another romantic suspense novel, then BAM, here comes a ghost. But it's written in such a beautiful way that you almost forget you aren't reading a story about a typical married couple. Nicolas and Lacy's love transcends death and she is happy with that. Nicolas wants her to move forward, but will she accept that?
Enter Jackson Carter, the son of Lacy's nemesis. When she helps his nephew find his lost dog, the last thing she wanted to do was make nice with Jackson. Her preconceived notions about him cloud her astute judgement and while she is cool and professional, she is far from being friendly. Especially since his new business is taking clients away from Lacy and her sister.
When a situation arises that requires Jackson to hire Lacy, she reluctantly agrees. Throughout the course of her work, she finds herself thinking more of Jackson, but what will Nicolas think? Is she ready to let go of her husband and welcome a new love in to her life?
Nicolas sets things in to perspective for Lacy. He is her voice of reason, her rock. Jackson is new and has a lot to prove, and Lynn still has a job to do. The longer the job plays out, the more dangerous it becomes, and the more Jackson and Lacy fall for each other.
This is a sweet story of new beginnings. It's a paranormal that isn't a paranormal. Lynn strikes a perfect balance of romance and suspense and throw in a ghost husband and you have yourself a wonderful story. To fully understand Lacy's relationship with her husband you have to read the book. Lynn does a beautiful job giving the reader a glimpse in to their relationship and the love they share. This story makes you happy and opens your eyes to see what could happen when you let someone new in and that it's ok to let go.
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