WINNERS! WINNERS! The winners of The Halo Effect from my blog last week with Shauna Allen are: Sabrina Robert and Sarah S. Email me at: christie (at) christie-craig.com and let me know if you’d prefer a PDF or Amazon e-book and we will get you your prize. Congratulations!
This week I have the wonderful Robin Kaye as my guest, and she’s here to share about her new Bad Boys of Red Hook novel, You’re the One. Stick around and leave a comment and you might be one of two lucky winners of a copy!
So, Robin, tell us what’s the craziest job you’ve held outside of being an author?
I was a 120-pound bouncer at a restaurant/dance club called Swampwater Al’s AKA The Swamp. I worked the door, threw people out, even got into a few fights. I broke one guys nose—yes, he hit me first, so I laid him out. I had to get my diamond ring cleaned after that one. The man still has a nasty scar.
As you can imagine, my mother was so proud. The only good thing about it was that I knew every cop in Pinellas County, Florida and dated quite a few.
LOL! Sounds like a lot of fun! Must’ve made for a lot of rule breaking, or following, depending on how you look at it! If the Ten Commandments was really a list of eleven, what do you think the eleventh commandment should be?
In my family we have 15 Commandments—number 11 is, Thou shalt marry a nice Catholic boy (or girl depending upon your sex) preferably Italian—and have lots of babies.
Love those Italians! But back to books . . . What is the last great book you read?
I recently re-read Reflections Without Mirrors: An Autobiography of the Mind by Louis Nizer, it’s tied for my all-time favorite book.
Ooh, sounds intriguing. And, for your book, if it were the main entree in a gourmet meal, what would be the side dishes?
Chocolate Fudge Cake with whipped cream, Mood music, and a huge bathtub…
Yuuuuummmm. What scene was the hardest to write? Why?
Technically: The restaurant scene with Skye’s brothers—only because there are so many character’s on stage, it was difficult to make it flow (I hope) seamlessly.
Emotionally, the scene where Skye leaves Red Hook—God, that killed me. Leaving Nicki practically guts her, and Nicki doesn’t understand. Poor Skye had emotional whiplash.
Do you have a favorite character, either that you’ve written or from another book?
I think my favorite character I’ve written is either Nicki in my Red Hook books, or Karma in my Domestic Gods books. Nicki is a ten-year-old foster kid, who just steals everyone’s hearts. And Karma—because she’s funny and she plays all her brothers like a fiddle–she’s just evil, but with the best intentions.
OK, totally serious . . . as I end all my interviews . . . Salty or sweet?
Salty or sweet? Both! I’m addicted to Ghirardelli Sea Salt Caramel Squares and Sea Salt Soiree. Can you say yum?
Why, yes . . . yes, I can. LOL. Now, can you tell us more about the book or give us a blurb?
Award-winning author Robin Kaye proves that home is where the heart is, even for a bad boy from Red Hook, Brooklyn.
Logan Blaise expected to be taking a quick break from his successful vineyard in Napa to visit his hometown of Brooklyn. But what he finds is a complete mess: His father is sicker than he’d imagined, and Logan is responsible for keeping the family restaurant running smoothly. When the chef quits, he’s forced to hire the first person who applies for the job—Skye Maxwell, a beautiful enigma with great skills and gaps in her résumé.
Skye is determined to make it on her own, without trading on her famous family name. Working in the community of Red Hook offers the perfect opportunity to stay out of the limelight while pursuing her dreams. At first glance, charismatic Logan seems exactly like all the shallow men she knew back home. But as she notices his small-town roots and strong family ties, the Brooklyn bad boy and his restaurant start to feel exactly like where she really belongs….
“Rex, the head cook, just quit.” Logan leaned against the bar and looked from Rocki to Francis DeBruscio, waiting for their promised help.
Francis was a cross between a walk-in refrigerator and Shrek’s Sicilian cousin, Guido the Ogre. He’d been a fixture at the Crow’s Nest since he’d beaten the spit out of Logan back when they were in high school. Pete had told Frankie either he could work off the emergency room bill washing dishes or he’d call the cops.
Under Pete’s tutelage and watchful eye, Francis had turned his life around, and became a paramedic and an all-around good guy. It was hard to believe that the man upstairs acting like a cantankerous old fart had changed so many lives and single-handedly turned them all into men of whom he could be proud. Logan shook his head at the irony.
Francis did a double take. “Rex would never just up and quit.”
Logan rubbed his forehead where the mother of all headaches was forming. “He’s an only child and his mother just had a stroke. She’s paralyzed on the left side—and she lives in Florida. It’s not as if he really had a choice.”
Rocki tapped her foot. “Bummer.”
Logan couldn’t believe this. “Come on, guys, you’re supposed to help me out. Can either of you cook?”
The two of them looked like a pair of bobblehead dolls in a crosswind.
“Neither can I. This is just great. What am I supposed to do now?”
Rocki shrugged one shoulder. “I suggest you start looking for a cook.”
“It’s Sunday. How the hell am I going to find a cook by opening on Tuesday?”
A grin split Francis’s face. “You can put a Help Wanted sign in the window.”
“What does Pop do if Rex gets sick, Francis?”
“It’s never happened as long as I’ve known Rex—but Harrison the sous chef might be able to take over for a day or two, I think. Bree knew what was what in the kitchen, I’m sure she could step in if necessary.”
“Not a big help since Bree’s halfway to New Zealand.”
Rocki went around the bar and poured herself a soda, missing the glass and making a mess of the bar Logan just scrubbed. “Have you asked Pete?”
“No, I didn’t want him to have another coronary.”
Both Rocki and Francis shot him matching glares.
“Bad joke. He’s had a rough morning. I caught him smoking his cigar on the roof and we had words.” Logan was definitely not ready for the role-reversal situation he’d found himself in since he returned. “All I need to do is tell Pop his cook just quit.”
Rocki took a long sip of her soda and watched him over the rim of the glass. “It’s not as if you’re going to be able to hide it from him for long. He’ll notice on Tuesday. Maybe he has a backup chef.”
Francis shook his head. “I doubt it. He’s never needed one before.”
Logan’s phone vibrated. He didn’t have to check to know it was Payton; she’d been calling constantly, crying desertion. He let it go to voice mail. “Fine, I’ll tell Pop, but first I’m going to put a Help Wanted sign in the window. Maybe an incredible cook will walk by and want the job.”
Francis laughed. “Yeah, and maybe I’ll win the lottery.”
He got busy with the sign while they made fun of him. He had nothing to lose, and other than putting an ad in the paper, he didn’t have a plan B.
Logan taped the sign up in the front window and wondered if temp services had cooks—it was worth a try.
He was still running his finger over the tape when a beautiful dark-haired woman dragging a suitcase shouldered the door open. She was a little thing with black shoulder-length hair, pale, almost translucent skin, and the darkest blue eyes he’d ever seen.
“You’re hiring a cook?”
Logan shot a glance at Rocki and Francis, who stood beside the bar with their mouths hanging open.
“That’s what the sign says. Can you cook?”
“Honey, there’s nothing I can’t do in a kitchen.” She had a deep, smoky voice that made him think of tangled sheets and sleepy sex.
Between her voice and her comment, Logan’s mind spun directly into the gutter. What was wrong with him? Not only was she not his type, but he was engaged. He cleared his throat, temporarily rendered speechless.
“Lucky for you, I’m looking for a job. Can I see the kitchen?”
“I won’t work in a dirty or unsafe kitchen.”
“Where have you worked?”
“Here and there. You know how it is in the restaurant business.” She pulled a menu out of the rack on the side of the hostess stand and paged through it. “There’s nothing on here I can’t handle. How many people do you seat in a night?”
Logan looked at Rocki and Francis. The two of them shrugged.
“I don’t know. I just took over the place last night—I’m filling in for the month. It was a really bad time for the cook to quit.”
She smiled and she went from beautiful in a girl-next-door kind of way to simply stunning. “It’s a good thing I walked by, then.” She looked around. “I assume the kitchen is through there?” She pointed at the swinging double doors.
“Yes, it is.”
“Okay then, let’s take a look.” She set her backpack and suitcase on the bench of a booth and he found himself following her to the kitchen.
“Did you close today because you lost your cook?”
“No, we’re only open Tuesday through Saturday.”
She shot him another heart-stopping grin. Nope, he hadn’t imagined it. She was absolutely staggering. Her lips were full, rose-colored, and bare. She wasn’t wearing all that lip crap Payton was always applying—most of which tasted bad enough to put him off kissing for life. If this woman wore makeup, he couldn’t detect it—not that she needed it. Her eyelashes were coal black, full enough to create shadows on her pale cheeks, and as long as Payton’s fake ones.
“So I’ll only have to work five days a week? It’ll seem like a vacation.”
The way she spoke, he’d think he’d given her the job. He hadn’t. Still, he followed her into the kitchen and couldn’t help but notice that her back was as attractive as her front—not that he was looking. His cell phone vibrated. He snuck a peek—Payton—and shoved his phone into his pocket as the woman inspected the kitchen like a general inspecting her troops.
She even ran her finger under the hood. “Your cook kept a clean kitchen. I like that.” She took a turn through the walk-through refrigerator, stepped out, and closed the door behind her. “Okay, I’ll take the job.”
“You will?” He shook his head. “Hold on, I haven’t even offered it yet. Hell, I don’t even know your name.”
She stepped toward him and held out her hand. “Skye. Skye Sinclair.”
He took it—her hand was small, warm, and as callused as his. Her shake was surprisingly firm considering she barely came up to his shoulder, and her touch sent a shock wave through him that had him holding on to see if it would continue. It did.
Thanks so much for being here, Robin! So now, everyone show your love and tell us if you’re salty or sweet people! Two lucky commenters will win a copy of Robin’s book. Check back next week to see if you’ve won!
You’re the One is available now at: