||Just My Best Publishing
||Nov 1 2001
Ski Lodge Christmas
By Janet Sue Terry
The ski lodge enchanted Nora. The round tables in the dining room were covered in white linen, and sprigs of mistletoe hung from the ceiling in strategic places. Pots of red Poinsettias graced the center of the tables accompanied by crystal condiments and candleholders.
A bar with a mirrored backdrop took up one side of the room. Photos of famous skiers who had visited or competed at the resort were displayed on the walls above it.
Fresh fruit, candy and nuts were available throughout the lodge. The aroma of coffee brewing and pumpkin pie, spiced ham, and turkey baking, mingled together and permeated the air.
"This is a lovely place," Nora commented.
They exited the elevator on the second floor where Blake unlocked a door and held it open for Nora.
Nora watched Blake disappear through the door, then removed her clothing from the suitcase. She felt as though she were caught up in a fairy tale, and chided herself for being vulnerable.
Shampoo, bubble bath, perfume, and deodorant were all tucked away in the bottom of the valise. She grabbed them, and hurried into the bathroom.
Afterwards, Nora slipped into a white sweater, dark tweed skirt, and black pumps. She coiled her hair and secured it to the side of her head. When Blake knocked, she opened the door and let him in.
He was dressed in a navy blue suit with a gray shirt and thin black tie. His hair was wet and slicked back severely. Nora could not help noticing his delightfully male fragrance. He pounded his chest comically. "Heart, calm down!"
"You look nice," she said.
Blake grinned and offered her his arm. They said very little on the way down in the elevator. The main lobby was filled with couples murmuring to one another or sharing kisses beneath the mistletoe. They entered the restaurant and found a secluded table.
Blake asked, "Are you happy?"
"Yes," she admitted.
His hand stole across the table and clasped hers.
"You have the most unique lips."
"Unique in what way?"
"In a good way," he assured her. He touched her face with his finger and drew the outline of her lips. It was the gentlest, and yet the most sensuous thing anyone had ever done to her. It stirred a deep awareness within her, making her want to respond. However, she lowered her eyes and willed herself to appear detached.
After they ate, Blake led her into the bar area, where a roaring fire was crackling in the fireplace. Several couples stood with arms intertwined, talking quietly and sipping drinks. The lights were dim, and the music soft and romantic. Blake ordered a mixed drink and handed it to Nora. "You should try this."
"What is it?"
"A Chi Chis."
Nora sipped the coconut-based concoction, enjoying the taste. It was growing late, and most of the other guests had retired by the time Blake led Nora out onto the dance floor. Afterward, beneath the mistletoe, he tilted her chin up and kissed her.
"My God, you're so tempting," he breathed into her ear. "You remind me of sin. It's so much fun, but you aren't supposed to do it."
When Nora yawned, Blake told her that it was time for bed. She walked beside him into the elevator.
Blake took her key, unlocked the door, and followed her inside. He leaned against the doorframe and drew Nora into his arms. He kissed her and groaned, drawing her even closer. He caressed her back and hips as the kiss continued.
Nora reacted immediately when his fingers touched her breast. "No!" she cried, wrenching away from him. "Don't paw me."
"Nora," he whispered, reaching out for her.
She pushed him away. "No!"
In truth, Nora was more annoyed with herself than she was with Blake. Why did such a special moment have to be marred with memories of Jason and his vile attacks on her?
Blake smiled his crooked smile, kissed his fingertip, and touched it to her lips. Without another word he disappeared through the connecting door.
Nora undressed, crawled into bed, and pulled a pillow into her arms. Her lips still tingled where Blake had kissed her. Her nipples were hard, and her stomach churned with excitement. She realized that Blake had rekindled deep passions that seemed to be reserved only for him.
After enjoying a hot breakfast of cinnamon oatmeal and apple muffins, Blake and Nora wandered outside. Blake began to teach her the basics of skiing. They spent the morning on the slopes, and everything was progressing smoothly until Nora threw a snowball at him. He responded in kind, and soon they were in a snowball fight. He tackled her to the ground, and they lay in a tangled heap hooting at their plight.
"You're beautiful when you laugh. You should do it more often."
"I don't have much to laugh about."
"Maybe we can fix that," he grinned.
At noon they went inside for lunch, ate hot chili with crackers, and drank cold milk. For dessert, they enjoyed freshly baked peanut butter cookies.
Afterwards they returned to the slopes and resumed Nora's lessons. They worked hard all afternoon, and by six o'clock she was able to move about on her skis.
Later that evening they went downstairs for dinner, and once finished, they returned to the bar. Nora rejected the drink Blake tried to order for her. However, she allowed him to lead her onto the dance floor. Blake held her too close, but she was still able to follow his lead. During the dance his lips fluttered over her temple, cheek and neck. The room was dimly lit, and no one seemed to pay any attention to them. When Blake lowered his head and kissed her, she surrendered. Her limbs turned to jelly, and deep cravings clamored for fulfillment. Nora knew that she had to get away from him.
After the dance was over, and Blake was chatting with other visitors, she slipped away to her room.
By the end of their second day at the resort, Nora was able to ski. In celebration, Blake took her for a ride in the sled with two other couples. Everyone huddled beneath lap blankets as the horses trotted down the lane. The driver began to belt out Jingle Bells in a loud baritone, encouraging his passengers to sing along, and they did. They toured the village and then circled back the way they had come.
On the third day, Blake decided to take the lift to the top of the mountain. Nora's stomach was tied up in knots as they boarded. She was terrified of heights, and felt ill as she looked down over the treetops. The view from the top of the mountain was amazing. The Lodge itself was located far below, in a cuplike crevice between the mountains.
At the combination gift shop and cafe, Nora sipped the hot chocolate Blake handed her, secretly hoping to delay the inevitable moment when he would expect her to speed down the slope beside him. Nora was not sure that she was capable of going through with it. But she was just as reluctant to climb back into the lift.
She stood on the edge of the slope looking down. The height seemed overwhelming, filling her with trepidation. She could barely breathe because of the fear that gripped her.
"Don't be afraid," Blake advised her. "Just do what we did on the smaller slopes, and everything will be fine."
Nora lifted her chin, squared her shoulders, and drew a shaky breath. She was not one to give in to fear. "I'm ready," she whispered.
They pushed off, and together zigzagged down the incline. It took all Nora's concentration to avoid the trees and stay on her feet, but she did it. When she finally neared the flat area around the lodge, a smile spread across her face, for she was proud of her courageous accomplishment.
Blake was full of praise. "I've never kissed a girl on skis before," he avowed. "But somehow, I'm going to find a way to do it now!"
Nora eyed him with apprehension as he aligned his skis with hers and slid closer. "You're going to trip us!"
Finally he was able to encircle her waist. "You feel like a stuffed doll in that jump suit."
"Don't you dare make me fall," she cried as their skis slid a few inches. Blake tightened his grip and kissed her like a victorious pirate demanding his booty.
"You're mad!" Nora accused as he retreated inch by precarious inch. When he was a foot away from her, she exhaled.
Just My Best, Inc.
Just My Best Book Publishing
Copyright(c)2002 By Janet Sue Terry
Possibilities, is set in the turbulent 1960's, and is the story of a young woman named Nora Steele. She must face her worst fears, when she is dragged into a dark alley late at night, by abusive, would be rapist, Jason Merk.
Despite the fact that she was raised in an orphanage, Nora lands a decent job just before she has to move out on her own. Her hard work and dedication pays off however, when she wins the respect of her employer, powerful Detroit Michigan defense attorney Houston Ripley, and he volunteers to pay for her college education, and then gives her an impressive promotion.
Ultimately, masquerading as a newspaper reporter Nora locates her maternal grandparents, in historic Mariemont Ohio, and through them finds her mother, famous author, Amy Snider.
Her life is almost perfect until Blake Baxter, on leave from the Navy, anticipating a tour in Vietnam, shows up at a co-workers party.
Although he is accustomed to having his way with women, he can't get to first base with Nora Steele. Every time he turns on the charm, she insults him. The fact that she hates him, and sees him as a clumsy, annoying jerk, only intensifies his desire to win her over.
Memorable characters include, Jeff Foster, an impressive and smart attorney with a perky personality, Rose, the Italian bookstore owner in Cincinnati, who works diligently to keep her business open, Roy Rollick, the big redheaded farmer from London Kentucky who loves fat women, Laura, the orphan who dreams of becoming a doctor, Jane Goodbee, the compassionate head mistress of the Seventh Street Orphanage, Mindy Wilson, an aging heiress who is alone in the world, Samantha Tabor, the woman Blake Baxter expected to marry, and Susan, the beautiful black paralegal that falls in love with a white man, even though her parents are over zealous in the civil rights movement.
When Blake Baxter bumped into Nora at Jeff’s party, he was instantly intrigued. She looked so young, so innocent, and most of all completely devastated by the accident. As her angry emerald eyes clashed with his, he impulsively asked her out.
Receiving a prompt refusal for the effort. Blake never expected to see her again. However, the following morning he accidentally plowed right into her on the street, and sent her reeling helplessly into the snow. He was compelled to prove to her that he was not as bad as she judged him to be. Nevertheless, the harder he tried to win her over, the angrier she became, and everything he did seemed to go wrong.Note: Please leave a review.
"The world is full of possibilities, and tomorrow is a new day."
Writers Digest - Review
"What impressed me most about Possibilities was its detailed narration and its emphasis on movement and action in the plot. The opening is powerful because the reader gets a vivid picture of Nora and senses the danger she’s in by the negative descriptions of Jason. The action of the book reveals urgency for Nora to work through the psychological effects of her circumstances, and thus sustains the reader’s attention until there is resolution."
Molly Martin - Review
"Possibilities is the first in the series, book two will pick up the story as Blake searches for Nora. Writer Terry has produced an interesting page turner sure to keep the reader engrossed. From the opening lines as Nora flees from her attacker right to the last paragraphs as Blake is bereft when he realizes Nora may be gone from his life for good the book moves right along. Characters are well rounded, filled with human frailty, foibles, and imperfection. Dialogue is full of grit, hard hitting, acceptable. Blake is a good foil for the serious Nora. Possibilities is an excellent initial work for this series, the reader is caught up in the tale, then the book ends with the reader wanting to know what happens next."
Shirley Johnson - Review
"The author takes you deep inside the heart of Nora, her search for her parents, her battle with her deep seated emotions of rejection. At times your heart goes out to her, at other times you want to tell her to stop using her past as a crutch in her present. It is a sea-saw of emotions."
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Reader Reviews for "Possibilities - Hardback"
|Reviewed by m j hollingshead
|Possibilities.............. Molly's Reviews
'Possibilities' is the first in the series, book two will pick up the story as Blake searches for Nora. Writer Terry has produced an interesting page turner sure to keep the reader engrossed.
Enjoyed the read, happy to recommend.
Reviewed by: molly martin http://www.angelfire.com/ok4/mollymartin
|Reviewed by Katie Jo
|I absolutly loved this book. I actually read it all in one day. Blake and Nora Caught my attenton and didnt let it go. I cant wait to see what happens next, especially because parts of it take place in London, Ky, my home town.|
|Reviewed by Christy French
|I'm hooked just from he brief excerpt. I love the characters you've listed and the love-hate dialogue.|
|Reviewed by Kenny
|OH MY Goodness, the first book I have read in a year. What a story line, always anticapating the next event for young Nora and blake.
This is real, hardships, and goodtimes make this book so interesting I couln't put it down.
I forgot about the internet, TV and the other worries in life and got so tied up in this book.
I can't wait till The next one is out...
|Reviewed by Ann Barley
|The world is full of possibilities, and tomorrow is a new day. I loved this sentence. It reminded me of Gone with The Wind, when Scarlett O'Hara says I'll think about it tomorrow. Throughout the book the author continues to show the positive side of the heroine and I soon realized that she is not one to indulge in self pity. There are many original verses and memorable characters in this novel. I was caught up in the story from the beginning, and ultimately fell in love with the hero Blake Baxter. What a man! Nora Steele was a troubled young woman and the writer weaved her tale around the characters growth. Similar to real life there were ups and downs, laughter and tears. Just when you think she will live happily ever after someone kicks the floor out from beneath her. But she carries on. I do recommend the book for anyone who wants something different. It would be a great motivational book for troubled teens if it were not for the explicit sex scenes, which are few, and inserted in just the right places.. I did not care much for the end since it left me wondering about the conclusion, but that is pretty common in series, and I'll be the first in line to buy Resolutions which will be out in the spring. I really enjoyed this book.
|Reviewed by Ruth
|Strong dialog, original quotes,and remarkable characters. A thoroughly creative novel that touched my heart. It was the tale of a young girl who is afraid to believe in love, magic, miracles or christmas. Therefore when a really great guy comes along, she tries to push him away. But he keeps right on trying to get through to her. I think the love story is the focus of the book, and yet there was so much more. She was a honest, sincere hardworking woman who made things happen and didn't waste time feeling sorry for herself. In fact when things got tough, she got going. Unlike so many romance novels this one did not depend on sex scenes to carry the story. However, when they did surface, they were at just the right time, and sensitively done in a way that matched the personality of the heroine and the setting. The author had a unique way of stepping into her characters shoes and allow us to really know her. I laughed and I cried, and I felt so good at times and found myself really involved in their lives. I even felt as though they were real people and this was really happening to them. The book had a feeling of Danelle Steele, Nora Roberts, and Dorothy Eden to it. Some of my favorite authors. It was different and entertaining. I'm looking forward to book 2 in the series.|
|Reviewed by Junefly
|When I started this book was on a Sunday morning.. I finally finshed it sometime Sunday night.. I could not put if down. It was spell binding and I really enjoyed it. I look forward to the next book in the series. If you enjoy a good romance than I highly recomend this book.|
|Reviewed by Nikki Butler
|The book moved me to want to call around and check on orphanes
our forgotten children. Out of sight out of mind seems so true.
And the rejection and abuse of this young women made her strong
enough to face her own enemy in love herself. Becouse Nora the young lady had built such strong walls around herself, her falling in love would appear impossible.
Funny how only a week ago a news story focused on orphanes and how alot of them grow up and get into trouble or even end up dead
this fiction book could be real how one young lady choose to make it in this cold world and did so well. the book made me laugh, it made me cry It would be a GREAT MOVIE and I'm wanting
The next book COME ON JANET LET US HAVE IT!!
YOUR fan from LOVELAND I know this is your first book but I hope to read many more from you . YOUR incredable.God bless you for touching this old heart.
|Reviewed by BonniP
|I received my book Thursday 12/16/02, and started reading it immediately. It was
so good that I had a hard time putting it down. I finished it last night, and
am looking forward to the next book, and next one, and next one.
Here are a few things that I particularly liked about your novel:
· The list of characters in the front of the book.
· Your cast of characters were believable.
· The story points to higher morals than going along with the crowd.
· There was a discreet message that setting goals is important to success.
· I agree that regardless of how bad a persons raising is, they can rise above it.
· Frugality – this generation wants everything now, unlike Nora.
· Modesty – Nora’s modesty was enduring.
It is true that our choices have consequences, and seemingly small things
have far reaching impact. Though you did not emphasize God’s hand in the lives of the characters, it was easy to perceive. For instance we are blessed with abundance, so we can bless others, as in the case of Nora,
and her friends at the law firm, helping the orphanage.
No doubt the impact that Beth’s words had upon young Nora, molded her character. Mothers, teachers, and anyone working with children, need to reflect upon how their words are used, and what impact they will have on impressionable young children.
If I really took time to reflect on it, I could get many more insights out of
“Possibilities”, but these are the ones that jumped out at me.
Of course, I’m telling all my friends about your book, so get on the stick and finish the next sequel, and quit leaving me hanging.
|Reviewed by Sharon Aiken
|I could not stop reading.. I loved the story and am really looking forward to any other work Janet does.|
|Reviewed by Erin Moore
|I have had the privilege to read many excerpts of this novel. I have loved it from the beginning. Janet has a way to make you see and feel how these characters act and react. It's a special talent, and Janet, I'm glad you were able to finish the work. I can't wait for the book!