The Unlucky Ones
Author: Stacey Marie Brown
Genre: NA and Contemporary Romance
Misfortune. Bad luck. Heartache.
Devon Thorpe is no stranger to any of them.
After devastating news, Devon’s life becomes a prison of responsibility, heartbreak, and hardship. All her dreams to leave her small town vanish. A prisoner of circumstance.
At her breaking point, Devon has a reckless moment in a diner bathroom with a blue-eyed sexy stranger. A single encounter with him leaves a deep mark on Devon, giving her only a memory of his touch when nights are lonely, and her life becomes too much to take.
Years later, a terrifying incident takes her and her family to Albuquerque NM, where she finds work as a server at a bar to support her mother.
Tattooed, moody, rough, brown-eyed, sexy as hell, Lincoln Kessler, the mysterious owner of the saloon, instantly draws Devon in. She can’t let go of the feeling there is some strange connection between them.
But the more Lincoln tries to push her away, the more determined she is to figure out the enigmatic man. One fiery kiss and Devon realizes she should have stayed away because when their worlds collide and tragedy strikes, she recognizes they are not each other’s savior, but each other’s misfortune.
A tear-jerking, novel about ill-fated love, heartache, loss, and finding your way through the pain.
And a lot of bad luck.
*A NA/Adult Sexy and heartbreaking Contemporary Romance. Deeply emotional with sensitive subject matter of dealing with a crippling mind disease.
The weekend passed in a blur, days spent with mom, nights at the Saloon. I finally met Julie and Miguel the other employees. Julie was a sweet, cute blonde, who went to UNM during the week, making the bar a perfect place for her to work on weekends. Miguel was in his early twenties, good-looking, and fit. The moment he locked eyes on me, he flirted relentlessly with me. It didn’t take me long to realize his conversation was elementary at best, not going much deeper than working out, women, his diet, and how awesome he was. The costumers ate up his cheeky, flirty vibe. He was the perfect bartender, but my tolerance for his unsubtle quips about getting me in bed, had reached its limit by Sunday night.
I barely saw Lincoln the whole weekend. When he did venture from his office to help stock or get a count of inventory, I was no more than a ghost to him, his frostiness towards me not lifting an inch. It frustrated me beyond belief, especially because I worked my ass off. I stocked, cleaned, and did side-work before I was asked, covered more tables than Julie, had customers laughing, bartenders in awe, and the kitchen staff blowing me kisses.
I was the fucking model employee.
Did he even utter one word of “good job” or “I’m sorry I was a total douchebag, forgive me, I’m so glad we hired you”? No, not once.
Besides Nat, even Miguel had told Lincoln how good I was, when I was grabbing stuff out of my locker Sunday night. Though I wasn’t sure I felt flattered or not.
“Hey, man.” I heard Miguel’s voice stream from Lincoln’s office near where I stood, grabbing my bag, dreaming about a shower and bed. Sunday had been almost as busy as Saturday and I was looking forward to the next two days off. “Here’s the till and report.”
Only a grunt came in response.
“Can I say, thank you for hiring that girl. Damn she’s good. Surprised me. Had all her tickets in order and on every drink the moment I finished making them.” Miguel scoffed, like he was truly shocked I was capable of being good. “And doesn’t hurt she’s fucking hot. Nice eye-candy for the bar.”
A noise rolled out of the room, sounding like a feral growl, fleshing my skin with bumps.
“Just sayin’. She’s smokin’. And you know my standards.”
“And if you want to keep you job, you will repress from ever speaking like that about any woman at this bar again.” The sound of a chair screeching across the wood floor, Lincoln’s voice a rumble. “Especially her.”
“Relax, Linc. It was a compliment.”
“Miguel, you are an average bartender with an over inflated ego.” Lincoln’s voice vibrated with cold anger, curling over my skin. “And I warn you, if I see you make one more sexual comment to her, or even look at her…you’re fired. She may not be, but you are easy to replace. Now go home before I change my mind.”
“Someone needs to get laid. Jesus, what is your problem tonight?” Miguel shot back. “And you wouldn’t fire me, you need me. I’m one of the best and you know it.” With a huff, Miguel stomped out of the office, passing me without a glance, and slamming through the back door.
What the fuck just happened? Did Lincoln actually stand up for me? When did he notice Miguel’s attention on me? He didn’t act like I was even here.
Boots hitting the wood floor, snapped me out of my trance, my head jerking to the doorway. Lincoln strode out, his brown eyes catching mine. Instantly his expression went taunt, his jaw twitching with irritation.
“What are you still doing here?”
“I was finishing side-work.” I forced my feet to stay planted on the floor. He was not going to scare me.
He rubbed the spot between his eyes, his nose flaring. “Go home.” He twisted on his feet.
“Yeah, I was. Thanks for your permission.” I snapped, my temper flared out of my mouth before I could think.
He swung back around, his expression detached, but his jaw rolled with aggravation. His stare latched onto me like a trap, locking me in place. Thick tension sprouted between us, tangling my lungs in its web, and slinking around my body.
He took a step closer, stopping a few feet from me, his form looming over mine.
I couldn’t move or look away, my lungs skimmed the surface as his eyes moved over me. Slowly. Meticulous. Heat bloomed inside, flowing through my veins, and tightening my thighs.
This man was a jerk. Had been nothing but rude to me, but I still couldn’t fight the desire to touch him. See if he was real. Understand why my heart thumped when he was close, why my body responded the way it did to him.
4.5 stars. I could not put this book down! The Unlucky Ones is a gritty, emotional read with a great storyline and remarkable characters. Devon is one of the strongest heroines that I have ever seen in a book. She experiences such heartbreak and grief, yet she perseveres. She is a responsible girl who is loyal and loving to her family, but be continually puts everyone else before her. Lincoln is an interesting hero. He blows hot and cold when it comes to Devon and he has secrets that he keeps hidden from everyone, including Devon. His story is full of grief and heartbreak as well. The two of them seem to be the unluckiest of people - fighting through a series of tragedies that have greatly shaped them as adults. This book is told entirely from Devon’s POV, which I think was fitting, but I would have liked a just few chapters told from Lincoln’s. I loved the secondary characters of Skylar and Nat as well. The Unlucky Ones is a beautifully written novel that puts you through all the emotional feels and has a HEA and no cliffhanger. I received this book for free.
Head to Stacey page HERE to see the Release Day Giveaway!