Sunday, August 2, 2009

Ground Rules - Christmas fantasy

Ground Rules
Christmas fantasy
Available on Smashwords
Also available for Kindle

Can a bad boy angel and a dispirited mortal find a Christmas miracle together?

Luke, newly promoted to Watcher Angel, has been watching one human too closely—Alice. Unfortunately, she’s his latest assignment. Good thing the ground rules forbid getting involved with a human.

Alice Garner scores a great contract to illustrate a children’s book by a famous author, but lack of inspiration forces her to cancel her holiday plans. Alone on Christmas to meet her looming deadline, Alice wishes on her treetop angel for help. She wasn’t expecting an angel to answer, especially one as surly as Luke.

As they try to restore Christmas cheer to another, Luke brings Alice more than inspiration. He reawakens her heart. Now Alice has to convince him he’s her greatest wish. With a little Christmas magic, can she convince him to break the ground rules and stay?

(For previous version)
A perfect love story with a little hint of Christmas...
This was such a short, sweet, light-hearted story about finding love, even if you're not looking. Alice and Luke were both strong-willed and not easily intimidated. They had both been heartbroken and not looking to be hurt again. Ms. Masters took a simple love story and made it magical, drawing the reader into the world where angels can make your dreams come true. And the fact that Luke could make a mean margarita certainly didn't hurt, either. I'm a sucker for a Christmas story - throw in a hot angel on a Harley and we've got a party!

Luke is the Harley, hunky not-like-you’ve-seen-before Angel. Had his heart broken and doesn’t want to listen to his heart. In Ground Rules he shows Alice that others have worse circumstances.
I really enjoyed Ground Rules. It reminded me of It’s a Wonderful Life with a love twist. If you want a good book to get you into the spirit of Christmas and miracles I recommend Ground Rules.
- Sizzlin' Hot Book Reviews - 4

This fun fantasy tale will keep you reading and waiting to see just what happens next. I didn’t see this ending coming, and I consider that an accomplishment for the author.
Why not try this read for yourself. It’d be a great book to read while sitting in front of the fire and sipping a hot chocolate. Just don’t drink and read at the same time ... you might make a mess when you laugh out loud at the great humor the author shares.
- The Long and Short of It Reviews - 3.5

Ms. Masters has written a wonderfully magical story that is refreshing to read. This creative story gives us a new take on the Christmas guardian angel. Complete with romance and snow.
- Romancing the Book - Lovely Rose

Casting Call - Who would Cate cast in these roles? Find out here.


Rankled by her doubt, or maybe his inability to convince her, Luke heaved a sharp breath. Of all the bloody things to bring up, she had to ask about the wings. He hated to bend the truth—okay, he’d outright lied—but lesser angels deserved equal respect too.

“You don’t believe me? Do you really need the flash? The ridiculous special effects?” He hadn’t yet mastered those. If she demanded it, his demonstration would wilt her belief in an instant.

Her frustration apparently equaled his. With a wary look, she sat up and fingered the edge of a pillow. “It’s just that… you don’t look like an….” Brow furrowed, she swept her gaze over him. “If anything, you look more like a rock star.”

There you go, love. That’s more like it. Yes, given his love of music, a rock star made a fitting comparison. But he’d tolerate no others.

Lifting her feet, he rested against the sofa and laid her ankles across his lap. “Perhaps you were expecting Clarence from It’s A Wonderful Life? I don’t go in for theatrics. And don’t get any ideas about jumping into a freezing river. I don’t do cold water rescues either. Or rescues in general.” Though Peter would applaud the movie reenactment.

Sarcasm tainted her tone. “Well, that’s not very helpful, is it?”

“You’re the one who called. And at the last minute, mind you. It’s nearly Christmas Day. Most people put their requests in much earlier than a week ahead of time.” If she had, Peter would undoubtedly have sent someone else, someone more qualified to help her. Someone more objective about her.

Though Luke had to admit, she was even more adorable when angry. And the smooth curve of her ankles drew his attention to her toenails, painted cotton candy pink. His tongue darted to his teeth, wanting to taste each toe. Strange, he hadn’t had a notion like that in all his otherworldly days.

Somber, she drew her feet beneath her. “I see. If I wanted the best, I should have asked earlier?”

A tough cookie, indeed. “Hey, I’m here. Not willingly, rest assured. But everyone else had already been dispatched.”

Hugging the pillow, she took an unusual interest in its fabric. Looking up, triumph lit her eyes. “If you’re really an angel, then how, exactly, did I ask?”

Here we go. Heaving a sigh, he stood. “If we must go through this futile exercise…you stood by the tree.”

To appease her—and hoping the distance would remove his temptation to taste her toes or any other part of her—he traveled in a whoosh through a tunnel of prismatic light to stand beside the decorated fir. “Here. You said you couldn’t take one more night alone, too much work, yadda yadda yadda.”

Repeating every word might remind her too much of her sadness. And he’d forgotten the drudgery of human life, how day upon day could wear down a soul.

Her brows furrowed. “Save the sarcasm. It’s not very angelic.”

Yes, the label sounded preposterous, he had to admit, when applied to him. “Have I left anything out?”

Her lower lip curled, an adorable pout. “Yes. Your sensitivity.”
“Eons ago, babycakes.” He wouldn’t tell her his fiancĂ©e had murdered it.


Thanks to The Wild Rose Press, which first released this ebook in 2011.


Nancy Jardine said...

He sounds really...nice and ...friendly? But he's going to get much nicer isn't he? Or maybe he should just get much badder? (Is that word allowed?)anyhow I like the story already.

Cate Masters said...

Can't give anything away, Nancy.
As the blurb hints, he has a very good reason for disliking the holidays. But maybe Alice can change his mind... :)