July 30, 2018 8 min to read
Book Blitz: Whole Lotta Frogs by Samatha Harris
Title: Whole Lotta Frogs
Author: Samatha Harris
Genre: Standalone Romantic Comedy
Release Date: June 19, 2018
My name is Lennox Brooks and I’ll admit, I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I don’t take the big risks, I cover my insecurities with snark, I’ve shown my crazy a few more times then I would’ve liked, and I’ve been trying, and failing at love pretty much since I first grew tits.
Weirdos, Mama’s boys, the over-coiffed, and underwhelming, I’ve been out with them all, just read my blog. I’ve got horror stories that would curl your toes and singe your nose hairs, but none of them compare to the toad who started it all, Ellis Walker.
He was the boy next door, the charming, infuriatingly gorgeous one who broke my heart and disappeared without a trace. Now he’s back and determined to throw my life into chaos, dredging up painful memories just when things were getting good.
But the thing is there are always two sides to every story.
I’ve spent the better part of my life hating him for everything he put me through, but without that resentment clouding my judgment how will I ever resist him?
Love is complicated, appearances are deceiving, and sometimes you have to kiss a whole lotta frogs before finding your prince.
GOODREADS LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/
There is a giveaway for a $20 Amazon gift card + an eBook of Whole Lotta Frogs (1 winner)
I got ready in a fury and reread Ellis’s invasive text three times while I fixed my hair and makeup, shaking my head each time and fighting back a smile.
I still hadn’t answered when I started walking the six blocks to Sawyer’s apartment. I’d barely stepped off the stoop of my building when my phone rang.
“You never answered my question,” Ellis said.
My lips curled up at the corners. “Of course, I didn’t.”
“Because it’s none of your business.”
“Len, your nudity is absolutely my business. In fact, I’m the CEO of that luscious body and I’m a hands-on kind of leader.”
I shook my head, unable to hold back my smile any longer. “Wow, you managed to turn a creepy text into an even creepier metaphor. Kudos to you.”
Ellis laughed. “Are you?”
“Am I what?”
“Naked,” he said. “I’m about the hop in the shower and I need a visual to, you know, help me finish the job.”
“Unbelievably sexy you mean.” I could hear the grin in his voice.
“Seriously, though,” he said. “What are you up to?”
“Well.” I took a deep breath, the ice-cold air burning my nose. “If you must know, Sawyer offered to make me dinner. I’m on my way to his place.”
“Really?” he asked. “Great!”
I stopped short on the sidewalk my feet frozen to the pavement. People around me grunted their disapproval and moved around me as I stood glued to the concrete.
“Great?” What happened to throwing his hat in the ring?
“Yeah. I’m starved; I’ll meet you there in ten.”
“You can’t be serious.”
“I love his food—man, that guy can cook. Best decision I ever made, going into business with him. Even if he’s trying to steal my woman.”
“Ellis!” I shouted into the phone. An elderly woman pulling a grocery cart behind her glared at me for my outburst. I mouthed my apologies to her then returned to my phone. “So help me God if you show up at Sawyer’s…”
“What’s the big deal? I’m friends with him. He’s friends with you. We can all have dinner together, it’ll be fun.”
“You aren’t invited.”
“Oh, Len, I’m hurt. I thought we were moving forward. We’re friends, aren’t we?”
I sighed. “Yes, we’re friends.”
“And friends sometimes eat together?” I groaned, not liking the route this conversation was taking. “Sawyer and I are friends, which I expect might change when I tell him how I feel about you. Oh, what the hell—we’ll just leave him out of this and you and I will just go ourselves.”
“Smooth, Ellis,” I said. “Real smooth.”
“I am pretty smooth if I do say so myself. Not to mention devastatingly handsome, and moderately charming.”
“Only moderately?” I asked.
“Yes, but don’t worry; I grow on you.”
I took a deep breath to calm my nerves and closed my eyes. “Please tell me you are not going to show up this evening.”
Ellis laughed. “Relax. I won’t be interrupting your little dinner.”
“Thanks.” I checked the address and looked up at Sawyer’s building. The door to which was sandwiched between a dry cleaner and a greasy pizza place. “I’ve got to go. I’ll talk to you later.”
“Okay,” he said. “Lennox?”
He didn’t say anything right away. I just stood there, the cold wind biting at my fingertips.
“Don’t—,” he started, his voice sounding almost pained.
I stood there listening to him breathe on the other end.
“Nothing.” He sighed.
I groaned and rolled my eyes. “Bye, Ellis.”
I stepped into an enormous bowl made of trampolines. Bright neon-green padding ran in a grid-like pattern across the entire arena, separating each trampoline into its own little rectangle. The springy black fabric covered every available surface, including the walls.
I stepped down into the closest square, giving it a test bounce, and smiled. It doesn’t matter how old you get. It’s impossible not to smile when bouncing on a trampoline.
We had the entire bowl to ourselves. I could still hear the music and the screaming, but it sounded distant and not nearly as deafening.
Ellis bounced back and forth from square to square, the squeaking of the springs mixed with my own tentative steps.
“Is this part of your plan?” I asked.
Ellis stopped jumping and rested his hands on his hips to catch his breath. “I could’ve gone with the cliché dinner and movie, but I figured you could use a little bit of fun.”
I laughed. “You’re right. I could use some fun. I’ve been a little stressed since this guy from my past came back into my life and won’t leave me alone.”
Ellis shrugged. “Maybe he likes you.”
I laughed and jumped to another square. “He thinks he does.”
“Trust me, Len. He knows.”
“Okay, so what’s next? Or was your grand plan to make me work out against my will.”
Ellis held up one finger and disappeared through the curtain of netting, only to reappear with a bag of bright red balls.
“What is that?”
“I was thinking about what you said about me torturing you when we were younger. I was a punk kid trying to get the attention of the girl he liked, but I get how it may not have felt that way to you.” He dropped the bag at my feet and turned it upside down, emptying six rubber balls at my feet. “This is your chance to get me back.”
Ellis made his way to the other side of the bowl and opened his arms. “Let me have it, Len. All I ask is that you don’t aim for the face.”
“You want me to hit you?”
“If you’re ever going to give us a chance, you need to let go of the past, and if this is what it takes to get you to forgive me then so be it. I’m willing to take the hit.”
I picked up a ball, testing the weight in my hands and eyeing him as he stood, arms wide open, feet spread apart, muscles tense and prepared for impact.
I wanted to hit him. I really did. But I am an adult, and adults don’t solve problems by hurling rubber projectiles.
“I can’t,” I said. “This is childish.”
“You scared?” he asked that trademark smirk of his spread wide across his face.
“I’m not scared. This is stupid.”
“I agree, but continuing to punish me for the mistakes I made as a kid is also pretty stupid.”
Anger welled inside of me and I drew back, hurling the ball as hard as I could toward his chest. The ball hit its target with a loud thud and bounced away.
Victory swelled inside my chest.
“See?” Ellis said. “Feeling a little vindicated, aren’t you?”
“Shut up,” I said, hurling the next ball toward him.
Samatha “Sam” Harris lives near Baltimore, Maryland with her husband David and daughter Ava. Born in Florida, she migrated north which most people agree was a little backwards. She has been an artist all of her life, a Tattoo Artist for more than ten years, and a storyteller since she was a kid.
Sam has a slightly unhealthy love for Frank Sinatra, classic movies, and Jazz and Blues music, but her first love will always be reading. From Romance, to Thrillers, to Historical Fiction and everything in between, she loves to become a part of the story. As a writer she tells the stories that she would want to read.