A brand new contemporary romance from New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author Katy Evans.
It started as a game.
We flirted. We played. Most importantly"we won.
Then I discovered who he was: Gambler. Famous playboy. Silver-eyed player who never plays to lose.
"And my best friend"s soon-to-be brother in law, Cullen Carmichael.
He needed a good luck charm, I needed a distraction.
So we made a gamble and set off for Vegas"but pretty soon"I was in too deep.
My heart, soul, and body weren’t supposed to be part of the deal.
But somewhere between big wins and long nights, my house of cards started to tumble.
What was this devil with those piercing eyes doing to me"
I"d given up on love, but the wicked, all-in Cullen Carmichael was upping the ante and wouldn"t stop until he"d won it all.
*This book contains characters from the Manwhore series but can be read as a complete standalone.Books in Series:Manwhore Series by Katy EvansBooks by Author:Katy Evans Books
"Are you sure this is safe"" I ask as my date parks his car in an empty parking lot next to a dozen others.
All of them too elegant for the surroundings.
My fingers tremble as I open the door and step out into the eerily quiet night, then I watch as my date hops out and takes a selfie standing next to a royal-blue sports car. I frown in confusion. What is he doing"
God. I"m not really out on a date with this guy" Am I"
"Relax, this"ll be fun." He motions me to a huge looming warehouse. My heart gives a little kick of dread as I follow him.
After he picked me up, my date let me in on the fact that he was taking me to this clandestine poker game in the underground of Chicago. Now I"m wondering about my judgment and if it"s kind of like a girl"s virginity. Once it"s gone, there"s no getting it back.
I mean, we"re in the worst part of town. In the distance, the city"s skyscrapers hover like concrete bodyguards. It"s intimidating and comforting at the same time, but I"m not na"ve enough to think I"m safe here. We"re in gang territory. Whoever runs this game is paying a steep tax to stay and play.
As I glance around the empty lot to be sure we aren"t held up at gunpoint before we reach the building, I smooth a hand nervously down my dress. This night out was supposed to be fun.
This was supposed to be a nice change for me.
An evening out of the apartment.
Except jail was never on the menu. Just stepping past those filthy-looking, crooked doors of that huge warehouse, I"ll be breaking the law.
I never break the law.
I"m a solid, responsible girl at thirty. Hell, I"m already way past the age I thought I"d be married and having babies. My friends are married. Rachel has a boy and a girl, Gina a girl, and Livvy is getting married this weekend. Me" I have a long string of breakups. Starting with my most recent one, from a relationship that lasted like four or five years and amounted to a big chunk of nothing.
I was dating a commitment-phobe. I didn"t know it at the time, and he sure as hell didn"t know it either. He could never take that step of proposing"much less the dozen steps it took to walk up to the altar and wait for me there. He asked for time and time and time, and I gave it to him. I gave him everything. I used to think he was the One. I used to think the One would come when I was ready.
"No, he wasn"t. He"s not the One, I tell you. If he were you"d be""
"Married and popping out babies," Rachel finished for Gina last week when we discussed my breakup.
I sat in sullen silence as I stared at the tissue box in front of me. Unable to believe that he threw me away the way he had. Still struggling, even now, to put the pieces of my life back together again.
"If I win over this guy, I can do fucking anything. Anything. Even win the Texas Hold"em Championship Tournament."
My date"s voice has a slight tremor of excitement in it.
If Rachel or Gina could see me now, they"d fall back from the shock. They"ve always seen me as the sweet one. The innocent one. I"ve never even gotten a parking ticket.
Now I"m going to illicit poker games with a guy I just met"
Of course, my date is nice and moderately handsome. Medium height, nice brown hair, brown eyes crinkled at the corners. We met at the gallery when he purchased a work from my last exhibit, and I always admire people who love art like me. I"m not even sure why I agreed to the date in the first place, except when he asked me out and I weighed the option of spending the night alone in my apartment versus going out, there was no contest. Although I"m not interested in reliving a broken heart nor interested in anything with any man, I also know I need to get over my ex and it can"t happen if I don"t allow some new things to come into my life. I plan to focus on my gallery and stay off men completely"or at least stay off anything serious with any. But I still need to distract myself if I"m to get over him.
Emmett, a legendary chef in the making, wouldn"t take me down the street for a hotdog unless he prepared it in his restaurant kitchen. And even then, I"d need to make an appointment.
Maybe that"s why I"m here.
But as soon as my eyes land on the crooked doors of the warehouse we"re about to enter, I"m reminded of all the bad choices I"ve made in my life. Life choices involving the men I"ve decided to date.