Kenneth Hailey, an uptight conservative mathematician, believes he’s in control. After all, every problem can be solved in a deliberate and logical manner. Even love. When his fiancée dumps him for his best friend, he leaves Manhattan for the West Coast. What better place to forget his past. It’s 1967, and San Francisco is the place to turn on, tune in, and drop out.
But is he ready for Rose Red?
Rose Red, a free-spirited flower child, challenges Kenneth, thrusting him into her world of love-ins, protest rallies, and rock concerts. Kenneth finds himself falling down a rabbit hole, hanging on for dear life.
Old habits die hard, and he retreats, but Rose Red has other plans for him.
Priscilla had been his last and only girlfriend. Sure, he’d dated and slept with a few girls before her, but she was the first who’d understood him. She respected his need for boundaries and his need to work out mathematical theories in his head. Distractions cursed his very existence. But in the end she had left him.
“So you broke up with your girlfriend.”
Kenneth stabbed at his sprouts and shoved a bunch in his mouth. He coughed them into his napkin, rolled it up, and stuffed it under the rim of his plate. “I said a change, not a breakup.”
“But you did leave because of a girl.”
What was with this chick? She had an uncanny way of seeking out the truth. “I’m over her.”
“Then I say, ‘love the one you’re with.’”
His generation’s answer to everything. Well, not for him. “What’s with you? You throw yourself at every guy you meet on the street. That’s not love.”
“I met you at the park, not on the street. And what’s wrong with sharing a little love? The world needs more of it.”
“Sex isn’t love.”
Rose picked up her fork and pointed it at Kenneth. “Maybe not for you.”
“You talk of me not allowing love in, but it seems to me you’re as bad. So you sleep with a bunch of guys. That’s not letting in love.”
Hard eyes stared at him. Rose tapped the rim of the plate with the tines. “I do know the difference between love and sex, but why be lonely? To share the night with someone is a beautiful experience.”
Mathematics did not allow for frivolous assumptions Rose spouted so freely. Arguing with Rose was pointless. Stubborn, with that russet hair and bright eyes, a real nut case—yet what she said about choosing to love someone instead of being lonely held some truth for Kenneth. He was lonely. And feeling like this, maybe he would settle for any girl to keep him warm at night.
Who is Viki Lyn…?
There’s nothing better than reading a good book over an espresso, watching a movie, trying out a new restaurant with close friends or laughing hysterically with my sisters. Some of my favorite movies reveal the truth, that I am a sentimental girl at heart: When Harry Met Sally, Something’s Gotta Give, Latter Days, Lord of the Rings, Sense and Sensibility and North and South (the BBC series).
What inspires me – the reality that romance between lovers is a hope more than a guarantee. My stories are an eclectic mix of contemporary and paranormal, but it is always romance that drives the story to its final happily-ever-after.
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