Book by Jordan, Penny
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
After reading a serialized Mills & Boon book in a magazine, Penny Jordan quickly became an avid fan! Her goal, when writing romance fiction, is to provide readers with an enjoyment and involvement similar to that she experienced from her early reading – Penny believes in the importance of love, including the benefits and happiness it brings. She works from home, in her kitchen, surrounded by four dogs and two cats, and welcomes interruptions from her friends and family.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
'That was some game you played over the weekend, Sam. I certainly never expected to see the Corporation's gold trophy go to a woman...'
'Sam isn't a woman, women are small and cute and cuddly, they stay at home and make babies.... Sam...even her name isn't womanly...'
Samantha Miller drew herself up to her full height—an inch over six feet—which was an impressive four inches above the man who had just so publicly and cruelly criticised her.
'You know your trouble don't you, Cliff,' she drawled affably. 'You just don't know a real woman when you see one. Seems to me that a man isn't so very much of a man if the only kind of woman he can handle is the kind you've just described, and as for making babies.' She paused for emphasis, well aware of the fact that she had the attention of their fellow employees who had happened to be in the large airy open-plan office with them. 'I'm woman enough to have a baby any time I want one.'
Only now was she revealing the true extent of her anger at the way Cliff had insulted her; her eyes flashing challenging sparks, her voice trembling a little with the force of her feelings.
'You have a baby...' her antagonist jeered angrily before she could continue. 'Who the hell would want to impregnate a woman like you? No way. Your only chance of having a child would be via some med student's sperm and a syringe..
Enough of the people standing around broke into laughter for Samantha to recognise that no matter how publicly she might be accepted by her colleagues, an uncomfortable proportion of them seemed to share Cliff Marlin's views.
Faced with the same situation another woman might have burst into tears or lost her temper but not Sam. You learned young when you were as tall as she was that crying didn't look cute, and besides.
Looking down from the advantage of her extra inches Samantha bared her teeth in a totally false smile and gave a dismissive shrug.
'You're entitled to your opinion, Cliff, but gee, it's a shame that you're such a sore loser. Mind, if I played golf as badly as you do, I guess I might be a tad sore about it, too. And as for making babies...how many times did you miss that putt on the eighth.'
Now it was Samantha's gibe that earned a responsive titter of amusement from around her.
Without giving Cliff the opportunity to retaliate she turned on her heel and walked quickly away, her head held high.
What did it matter that she knew the moment she was out of sight and earshot that the others would be talking about her, gossiping about her, the six foot Amazon of a woman who, in all the time she had been with the Corporation, had never attended any of its social events with an escort; the only one of her admittedly relatively small group of female peers in what was essentially a very male-biased industry who had not, at one point or another, confided the details of her private life to the others.
Now, at just over thirty, Samantha was well aware that she had entered a decade which might prove to be one of the most productive and fast-paced of her whole life. It was also a decade which would see the chance of her meeting a man, the man...the man she would be able to fall in love with, the man she would want to spend the rest of her life with, the man with whom she would have the babies she craved so much, sharply declining.
There would be men of course...were men...masses of them, men who didn't want to commit, men who didn't want children, men who did want children, but who most definitely did not want a wife, men who were already married...men who... Oh, yes, the list of men to avoid was endless and the choice narrowed even further when one was as picky as she.
'Why don't you at least have a date with him?' her twin sister Roberta had demanded the last time she had been over visiting her family in the States from her new-found home in England. Their mother had been complaining to Bobbie about Sam's obduracy in not accepting a date from the man who had been pursuing her at the time.
'There isn't any point. I already know he isn't the one,' Samantha had told her fatalistically. 'It's all very well for you to take Mom's side,' she had complained to her twin later when they were on their own. 'You've found your man, your perfect "one and only," and when I've seen how special what you and Luke have together is, how happy you are, how could I possibly settle for anything less.'
'Oh, Sam.' Bobbie had hugged her contritely. 'I'm sorry, you're right, you mustn't but I have to say I hope you find him soon. Oh dear,' she had then apologised as she'd started to yawn, 'I do feel tired.'
'Tired, I'm not surprised,' Samantha had laughed, and then unable to stop herself she glanced with rueful envy at her twin's heavily pregnant body—not with twins as Bobbie had first hoped, though. This was another single pregnancy. Seeing the look in her eyes Bobbie had asked her gently, 'Have you never met anyone you could love, Sam? Has there never been anyone you have loved?'
Samantha had thought for a moment before shaking her head. Her blonde hair, unlike her twin's, was cropped into a mass of short tender curls that framed her perfectly shaped face making her large blue eyes seem even larger and darker than Bobbie's.
'No. Not unless you count that crush I had on Liam way back when he first started working for Dad... I must have been all of fourteen at the time and Liam pretty soon made it clear that he wasn't interested in a juvenile brat with braces on her teeth and her hair in plaits.'
Roberta had laughed. Liam Connolly was their father's most senior assistant and it was no secret in the family that Stephen Miller was encouraging him to run for the position of State Governor when he himself retired.
'Yeah, well, I guess to a man of twenty-one, especially one as good-looking as Liam, the idea of having a fourteen-year-old adoringly worshipping him doesn't hold that much appeal.'
'Believe me, so far as Liam was concerned it didn't have any appeal,' Sam had returned feelingly. 'Do you know he even refused to kiss me one particular Thanksgiving. Can you believe that—and me his boss's daughter...'
'Yeah, that could have been a real bad career move,' Bobbie had agreed tongue-in-cheek, 'and an even worse one if Dad had found out Liam was encouraging you.'
'Mmm...and Liam has always put his career ahead of everything else.'
Bobbie had raised her eyebrows a little at the critical note in her twin's voice, inviting an explanation of Sam's acidic one.
'Oh, come on, Bo Bo, there's been a succession of women in his life—and his bed—but even Dad's commented on the fact he's never come anywhere near making a serious commitment to anyone. Lordy, he hasn't even allowed any of them to move into his house.'
'Perhaps he's still looking for Ms. Right...'
Samantha had given her sister an old-fashioned look.
'If he is, then all I can say is that he surely is having one hell of a good time with an awful lot of Ms. Wrongs first!'
Now, all too well aware of what was likely to be being said about her behind her back in the general office, Samantha headed for the elevators. So what if officially she wasn't due to take her lunch break for another full half an hour? Right now she needed to breathe fresh clean air and not the stale rancid stuff she had just been forced to endure, contaminated as it had been by Cliff's malice and envy. Because that was what had sparked his attack on her, Samantha knew that... He had been riding her hard for the last six weeks—ever since she had been offered the promotion he himself had wanted.
She had a month's leave coming up soon, thank goodness, and she had already made arrangements to spend most of it in England with her twin.
Her father's term as State Governor had only a little more time to run, otherwise he and her mother would have been joining her.
Theirs was a very close family, made all the more so because of its history. Her mother had been born illegitimately to Ruth Crighton, the unmarried daughter of the Crighton family of Haslewich in Cheshire, England, at the time when unmarried girls of Ruth's class simply did not become pregnant or certainly were not supposed to.
It had been during the Second World War. Ruth had fallen deeply in love with Samantha's grandfather but, due to a misunderstanding and the disapproval of her own father, who had a bias against Americans, Ruth had erroneously believed that Grant had lied to her about being single and actually already had a wife and a child in the States. Pressured by her family, Ruth had given her baby, Samantha and Roberta's mother, up for adoption.
By one of those quirks of fate that always seemed too farfetched to be possible, Ruth's baby had been adopted in secret by Grant, who had assumed that Ruth was rejecting her child in the same way she had rejected him.
It had only been when, on realising how badly their mother Sarah Jane was still affected by the dreadful hurt caused to her by her mother's rejection, that Samantha and Roberta had hatched a plan to bring Ruth to book for her desertion of her child. It was then that the whole real circumstances surrounding the birth had come to light.
Not only had their grandparents been reunited, but Roberta had also met Luke to whom she was now married and already had one child. Another was on the way.
Like their grandmother, Luke, too, was a Crighton. Only from the Chester, not the Haslewich branch of the family.
Crightons and the law went together like peaches and cream and so it was no surprise that Luke should be one of the city&#...
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Book Description Harlequin, 2012. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110373249837