Friday, October 8, 2021

Read an Excerpt from AGAINST THE ODDS by Taylor Lee



Gia is a hotshot campaign manager. She should be. Her father ruled the county for years…until he went to prison. Determined to back a worthy candidate, Gia chooses to run a newbie who happens to be her fiancé.

Logan is a high-tech phenomenon. In addition to being more than a little arrogant, he is beyond wealthy. Desperate for campaign cash, Gia is determined to convince him to support her candidate. She insists she doesn’t want him, she just wants his money. That assertion lasts until she meets him.

Not surprisingly the sparks fly between Gia and the sexy entrepreneur, until he refuses to fund her candidate. Infuriated by his rejection, she kicks him to the curb. When her  fiancé/candidate commits an unspeakable crime, Gia admits that the wealthy tech magnet was a better judge of character than she was.

That doesn’t mean that she will accept his outrageous proposal as to who should run for office to replace her disgraced candidate.

Love Kaylea Cross's heart pounding romantic mystery thrillers? Sylvia Day’s and Maya Banks red hot sexy heroes, feisty heroines and high adrenaline action? Grab AGAINST THE ODDS and prepare to be addicted.


Gia stared unseeing at the morbidly obese man towering over the corner of her booth. Forcing herself to focus, she saw the concern tightening the giant’s florid, pockmarked face. Unwilling to acknowledge his distress, she shook her head and waved an impatient hand at her empty glass. When his frown deepened and it was clear he wasn’t going to comply with her silent demand, she struck out. “Dammit, Granger, what’s it going to take to get another shot of the rotgut booze you swill in this scummy dive of yours? The last time I looked, my money smelled as sweet as the shit of any other drunk’s you serve.”

“C’mon, Gia. Not only is your money good, so is your credit. And, sugar, as you know only too well, I never put a limit on my favorite lushes. But, honey, I’m thinkin’ a big, greasy burger loaded with everything I’ve got in the kitchen would be better than another one of those.” Pointing with his chin at the shot glasses lined up like soldiers on parade, he wheedled her. “How about it, sugar? Why don’t cha let your ole buddy Granger bring you something loaded with fat and protein to soak up all that sixty proof you’ve been swigging back tonight?”

“Goddammit, Granger, since when did you care if your ‘clients’ get shit-faced as long as they pay their bill? So nix the ‘I’m your baby daddy’ crap. You ought to know by now no one takes care of me—but me.” Frantic for another shot of the brain-numbing booze, she tried to concentrate on the row of empty shot glasses in front of her but lost count. Not sure if it was the sixth or seventh round she wanted, she gave up in exasperation. “Dammit, can’t you see that I’m having a breakdown? What the fuck kind of a friend are you? Forget the food. And forget these itty-bitty glasses. They aren’t cutting it tonight. Bring me a goddamned bottle, an unopened one. Now!”

A deep, cultured voice sounded at her elbow. “Hold that order, Granger. I think our little political hotshot has had more than enough of that cheap booze.” The man reached for her arm, his voice edged with disgust. “Really, Gia, if you’re going to drink yourself into a stupor, the least you can do is drink decent booze.”

Gia forced herself to look up. Through her bleary eyes, she struggled to see who dared to interrupt her effort to drink herself into oblivion. Seeing the impressive man frowning at her, a shiver of revulsion almost took her down. It was bad enough that her nemesis, who was tossing a big bill Granger’s way, was the guy she hadn’t been able to get out of her head or her wayward body since she’d met him. He was also the man who’d made it abundantly clear that she was eons beneath his exalted status. She wasn’t too drunk to appreciate the irony that her about-to-be, indulgence-triggered blackout wouldn’t help to raise her in his sights. She didn’t know how or why she allowed him to haul her out of the booth where she’d planned to make her refuge for the night. A bigger miracle was that she managed to stagger out the back door of the crowded tavern into the alleyway.

Even as discombobulated as she was, she admitted that without his arm wrapped securely around her waist, she couldn’t have done either. Much less made it into his Ferrari convertible if he hadn’t scooped her up in his arms and summarily deposited her in the front seat of the extravagant automobile. When he assumed the seat beside her, the last thing she remembered before she passed out was the enticing fragrance of his expensive cologne overlaying his seductive, masculine scent. Later, from the depths of her befuddled brain, she had a dim memory of him tucking her in a king-size bed that she learned the next morning was in his penthouse condominium.


Looking back, it had been a usual night. Fifteen-hour days were her norm. Far from an aberration, her long days were de rigueur for the campaign manager of a looming congressional race. She was alone in her office, having shooed her staff home hours before. Almost ready to call it a night, she reviewed the schedule for tomorrow and sighed. She knew she could handle the campaign stops on the agenda without breathing hard. She wished she could be certain that Aiden was up for the rigorous schedule. She could only hope that once he was in front of the modest crowds, he would come to life. Which wasn’t a certainty. More and more, he peevishly complained that campaigning was hard work and she needed to figure out a way to get more downtime for him. She sniffed, acknowledging that was the problem with trust fund babies. They didn’t have the stamina that people who’d had to fight for everything they’d ever achieved had. People like her.

Scrubbing at the tension in the back of her neck, willing the hard knots to loosen, she thought she heard a sound from the hallway. Knowing that she’d been alone in the office for at least a couple of hours, she assumed it was the cleaning people. When she heard the muffled sounds again, she decided to check and see if one of the staff members was working late. Walking down the hall, she heard a high-pitched sound from Aiden’s office. In what turned out to be the biggest mistake of her life, she didn’t bother to knock, rather opened the door and strode in. In the cacophony of emotions that threatened to crush her, she wished that she could rewind the clock, retrace her steps. If only she’d gone home as she’d intended to. As she should have. But it was too late. She was here now, and her life would never be the same again.

He was bending over the top of his desk. His pants were riding his ankles, baring his ass to God and country. Gia was struck by an illogical thought. Staring at his naked ass, she realized that she’d never appreciated how pale Aiden’s ass was or, frankly, how hairy. His cheeks looked like the tapioca pudding her mother dared to call dessert. Except that this pudding had been sprinkled with a crop of wiry hair. Inconsequentially, she wondered if she would have found him as attractive as she had if she’d realized that his ass was not only pale and a little scrawny but decidedly hirsute. Aiden’s ass became unambiguously less interesting when she acknowledged the woman’s bare legs wrapped around the waist of her candidate. And coincidentally, her fiancé.

Gia didn’t need to see more of the woman sprawled on the desktop and under Aiden’s thrusting hips. Her slender legs were familiar, as were her breathy moans. In that never-to-be-forgotten moment that was engraved on her brain for eternity, Gia knew that Sissy Blankenship was the woman her grunting candidate was fucking. It was bad enough that Gia knew her and that she’d personally carved out a place for her on the campaign. At the time, Gia thought it was the least she could do for the eager young woman who’d reminded her of herself at that age. Gia remembered how she’d begged her father to give her a real job on his campaign. Like Sissy was now, she’d been a starry-eyed sophomore in high school—and had just turned sixteen years old.

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