Karen Booth--Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl

Secrets of a Somewhat Sunny Girl by Karen Booth

As sisters, they tell each other all their secrets…except one.

With divorce and infidelity hanging from nearly every branch of her family tree, Katherine Fuller sees no point in marriage. Boyfriends? Sure. Sex? Of course. Wedding vows? No, thanks. Still, when her younger sister Amy gets engaged, Katherine gathers all the enthusiasm she can. She won’t let Amy down. She’s done enough of that for a lifetime.

As the sisters embark on wedding plans, Katherine’s college love resurfaces. It nearly killed Katherine to part from sexy Irish musician Eamon more than a decade ago, but falling under his spell a second time forces her to confront everything she hid from him. The secrets surrounding her mother’s death are still fresh and raw in her mind, but one has haunted her more than the others. She can’t bear to tell anyone, especially not Amy. It could ruin far more than a wedding. It could destroy a sister’s love forever.


My Favorite Romances Featuring Irish Heroes

I have a serious weakness for a man with an accent, especially British or Irish. It helps to explain my lifelong Duran Duran addiction and my ridiculous crushes on Chris O’Dowd and Cillian Murphy. (Seriously, whenever my husband and I watch Peaky Blinders, he says, “Guess we need to watch your boyfriend.” I LOVE him for that.) Of course, it doesn’t necessarily explain why I enjoy reading or writing books with British or Irish heroes, since I have to make those sexy voices in my head. I guess I just have a good imagination. Readers must, too—these heroes always seem to sing a siren song. My brand new book, Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl, has an Irish single dad musician for a hero, and in honor of that, I’m sharing a few of my favorite romances featuring Irish heroes, most of which are also set in Ireland. What are some of your favorites?

Roomies by Christina Lauren

This is the only book on my list not set in Ireland, but since I’m not quite sure I could be more in love with subway busker-turned-Broadway star Calvin Mcloughlin in Roomies, we’ll give him a free pass. I totally understand why heroine Holland was so enamored of him—he had this easy confidence that was so endlessly appealing. I swear I could hear his voice from the very beginning. This marriage-of-convenience story was excellent on so many levels, most important of which (to me, at least), was the way the actual marriage was worked into the story. Much attention was put into making it plausible, which really helped sell the book from beginning to end. I also loved the ways in which Holland sought Calvin out early in the book before she knew him. I could totally see myself doing something like that. Thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish.

Her Best Laid Plans by Cara McKenna

I’m a huge sucker for Cara McKenna to begin with, so this book was a total no-brainer for me. She has a way of tapping into the heat and emotion of a story in a very visceral way. Plus, her dialogue is freaking awesome. Her Best Laid Plans delivers all of that, but it’s a novella, so it’s quick to get to the action. Ahem. Hero Connor Kelleher is a tall and brogue-y bartender, perfect for a sexy romp. But of course, those pesky feelings have to get involved and heartbroken heroine American Jamie Webb, who is only in Ireland for two weeks, has some big-time choices to make.

Love in Dublin by Jennifer Gracen

This is Book 4 in Gracen’s McKinnon Brothers series, which can be read as stand-alones, but you do get more out of it if you take the plunge and read them all. Single dad Colin McKinnon meets American travel writer Maggie in a pub and he’s drawn to her right away. She’s everything he isn’t right now—full of life and with a huge sense of adventure. This is an enchanting opposites-attract story that leaves you wondering until the very end whether a guy with very deep roots can hold on to a woman who’s so committed to never standing still.

Wild Irish by CM Seabrook

Book 1 in the Wild Irish series, this is another set in Ireland, featuring another hero whose name starts with a C. Rock star Cillian is struggling with the betrayal of his brother when American Delaney runs into him—quite literally, right through a fence and into a field of sheep with her rental car. Delaney is spending a month in Ireland trying to forget the death of her sister and a betrayal of her own, hers by her cheating fiancé. This is a story of two deeply damaged people who are equally terrified of taking a romantic leap. They both describe each other as dangerous or trouble and that’s exactly what they believe until brick-by-brick, they begin to tear each other’s walls down.

Unfixable by Tessa Bailey

It seems to be a common theme in these Irish romances that the heroine heads to the Emerald Isle to escape. It makes sense—I think a lot of us use these books as an escape and it’s a lot cheaper than a plane ticket. In Unfixable, Willa Peet is trying to lick her wounds after a particularly terrible break-up. Running headlong into Shane Claymore, an Irishman with a bad attitude close to her own, is about the last thing she needs. Not that he’s rolling out the red carpet. He’s in Dublin only to sell his family’s inn, then he’s determined to return to his career on the Formula One Circuit. He just didn’t expect to find a sarcastic woman who would make him question his entire existence. This one delivers trademark smart and sexy prose from Tessa Bailey, with extra bonus points for a super grumpy hero. 


Secrets of a Somewhat Sunny Girl by Karen Booth

As sisters, they tell each other all their secrets…except one.

With divorce and infidelity hanging from nearly every branch of her family tree, Katherine Fuller sees no point in marriage. Boyfriends? Sure. Sex? Of course. Wedding vows? No, thanks. Still, when her younger sister Amy gets engaged, Katherine gathers all the enthusiasm she can. She won’t let Amy down. She’s done enough of that for a lifetime.

As the sisters embark on wedding plans, Katherine’s college love resurfaces. It nearly killed Katherine to part from sexy Irish musician Eamon more than a decade ago, but falling under his spell a second time forces her to confront everything she hid from him. The secrets surrounding her mother’s death are still fresh and raw in her mind, but one has haunted her more than the others. She can’t bear to tell anyone, especially not Amy. It could ruin far more than a wedding. It could destroy a sister’s love forever.

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Excerpt:

Katherine and Irish musician Eamon had a super-steamy relationship 11 years ago. Now he’s back in her life, but out on the road, leaving them to talk on the phone every day. This is the night of Katherine’s sister Amy’s engagement party, an event Katherine has been dreading.

“How did the party go?” Eamon asked. “You don’t sound drunk, so it must’ve been at least tolerable.”

“It was okay. Everyone was really nice, but I definitely did not feel comfortable. Their whole family is like pod people. They’re all so happy and normal.”

“Why does that make them pod people?”

“I don’t know. Because that’s nothing at all like my family? And there’s no family dirt, which I find a little impossible to believe.”

“You went digging for dirt at your sister’s engagement party?”

“Hey. You’re the one who told me not to drink too much. I had to entertain myself somehow.”

He unleashed the laugh I find most disarming. In my head, I could see his off-kilter smile. “There’s always dirt somewhere. Trust me.”

“That’s what I was thinking.”

It got quiet on the other end of the line and I wondered what he was thinking about or whether he was maybe tired. I would’ve given anything for him to be waiting for me at home right now, rather than thousands of miles away. I couldn’t escape the loneliness of that fact.

“Katherine, can I ask you something?”

“Of course. Anything.”

“What exactly is it about that situation that makes you so deeply uncomfortable? Your sister getting married. I know it’s not just that you feel like you’re losing her. There’s something more to it, isn’t there?”

It felt like my heart was doing a bad impression of an old clock, ticking away at an unreliable pace. There was so much about this for me to unpack, probably because I’d devoted so much of my life to keeping it hidden. “My parents didn’t have a great marriage and they did a lot of things to hurt each other. It’s hard as a kid to witness that. It definitely sours your opinion of the institution.”

“I suppose.”

“Am I being unreasonable?”

“No. You’re not. I just think that’s not the only way to look at it. Some people might go through that and decide that they can do better. Maybe that’s the way your sister feels.”

Was he right? Had Amy taken things one way while I’d run with it in the opposite direction? She’d definitely seemed comfortable at the party, acclimated to the idea that marriage was this normal thing normal people did, and that she was a member of that group. Maybe I needed to accept that just because I saw her one way, and I saw myself the same way, perhaps I’d been completely wrong. After all, she had been younger than me. She’d witnessed less than I had. And of course, she hadn’t been the catalyst for the ultimate bad. She hadn’t set the demise of her own family in motion. Amy didn’t have to live with that.

“Maybe you’re right. Maybe I need to stop looking at it like that.” I knew then that I needed to get my attitude straight. Amy deserved better than a maid of honor who was being a complete pain in the ass.

“I could be wrong.”

“Nope. It’s a great suggestion. You make me a better person, you know. You always have.”

“Do you really think that?”

I thought back to the way I’d been with him the first time, so full of sunny optimism, not at all the way I was right now, but I could admit it was a place I wanted to get back to. “I do, Eamon. I really do.”

 

About Karen Booth: Karen Booth is a midwestern girl transplanted in the South, raised on ‘80s music and repeated readings of Forever by Judy Blume. An early preoccupation with rock ‘n’ roll led her to spend her 20s working her way from intern to executive in the music industry. When her kids came along, she traded late nights for early mornings, writing contemporary romance and women’s fiction. Karen was a finalist for RT Magazine’s Series Romance of the Year and Gold Seal of Excellence, and the 2018 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award. Her books have been translated into seventeen languages.

Connect with Karen: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Giveaway: Win a signed print set of Karen Booth’s three Romantic Women’s Fiction novels: Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl, Bring Me Back and Back Forever, or 1 of 2 e-copies of Bring Me Back!

About Bring Me Back: Nearly forty, Claire Abby had thought life would be a whole lot smoother by now. Single parenting her college-bound daughter is trying, her journalism career is fading, her sister’s a handful, her dad is worse, and her mom has been gone so long it’s hard to remember what it was like when she was here.

So it’s both a lucky break and a jaw-dropping distraction when Claire lands an interview with British rock star Christopher Penman. Claire spent her teenage years fantasizing he was her boyfriend. In person, Chris is everything Claire feared—off-the-charts sexy, ridiculously charming, and utterly nerve-wracking. He’s not about to discuss the rumors he’s dodged for a decade. She must earn his trust and unearth the truth, but she never banked on the heartbreaking secret behind it.

His blockbuster story is her first priority when she returns home, a nearly impossible task when Christopher starts calling. And flirting. There’s no denying his wit or his buttery British accent, and once she agrees to see him, it’s beyond anything her teenage brain ever imagined. But when Christopher’s painful past repeats itself, can Claire smooth out her life and save the man she could never forget?

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One Response to Karen Booth–Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl

  1. Deborah Sabin

    Love this book!

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