If he kisses me right now, I’ll drown.
Every sip of air is shallow and burning, because in the arms of my best friend’s brother, I’m the closest I’ve ever been to sin.
His eyes flick to my lips, and I remember the first time I tasted him, seven years ago before I left this town and vowed never to return. His hands grip my waist, and I remember the pain when he rejected me, when my entire world crashed down at his command. His jaw clenches, and my senses come alive with one stinging reminder.
I’m not his to kiss, and he’s not mine.
I tried to stay away from Tyler Wagner, putting an entire country between us. But when his sister’s wedding brings us back to the same town, to the same house, I can’t avoid him, no matter how hard I try.
He’s always there, his dark eyes bewitching, luring me into their depths. The memory of us pulls me under like a rip current, and when he flashes that smile, I lose my breath, along with my will, unable to escape his grip and find the surface.
Now, hours before our plus ones arrive for the wedding, I’m in his arms, begging him to make me hate him, knowing he never could.
If he kisses me right now, I’ll drown.
And I’ll take him down with me.
Make Me Hate You is a best friend’s brother romance that will have you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.
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Librarian Laura’s Review of Make Me Hate You
Make Me Hate You is Kandi Steiner’s all new standalone best friend’s brother, second chance romance loaded with angst and sizzling moments of forced proximity during a wedding weekend on the Cape. It’s fire, and trust me when I tell you that you want to let it burn. Kandi is the queen of angst and slow burn.
Jasmine lives in Oakland, CA where she makes a living running a very popular podcast. She has an adorable, doting boyfriend. Her lifelong best friend, Morgan Wagner, is getting married and she is excited about all the maid of honor duties the upcoming lavish wedding plans bring. Well, all except for seeing the person who broke her heart 7 years ago – Tyler Wagner. Jasmine grew up without a father, and her mother was in and out of rehab for years before leaving Jasmine altogether right after she graduated from high school. Thankfully, the Wagner family took her under their wing, treating her like another daughter, and not just the best friend of both of their children, Morgan and Tyler. They were the “Wagners – Plus One” – an inseparable group of best friends.
Heading back home to her New England town brings up painful memories for Jasmine – being left behind by her mother, and being told that the night she became more than best friends with Tyler was a mistake. Jasmine’s feelings for Tyler have never lessened; but she knows he made his choice 7 years ago. The choice to let her go, when all she wanted to do was hold on to him for dear life. Now Tyler is famous for his YouTube channel were he gives financial advice and is ogled for his ridiculously good looks by his millions of followers. And, of course, he has a perfect, glamorous, exotic girlfriend. There’s no way he would change his mind about Jasmine. So, why is he showing up every time she tries to distance herself from him?
Jasmine wants to hate him for the way he hurt her, but she just can’t. The fine line between hate and love she has for Tyler Wagner is blurring. Once thing is for sure; this is going to be a wedding to remember. And not just for the bride and groom.
If you like steamy, second chance romance, you’ll love Make Me Hate You from the queen of angst, Kandi Steiner. Be prepared for a roller-coaster of emotions with this one. I highly recommend this book and also the Becker Brothers series from Kandi.
Thank you to Valentine PR for a review copy of this novel.
Seven miles and an hour later, and all the anxiety I’d felt the night before was completely gone.
At least, until I rounded the foyer into the kitchen and saw I wasn’t the only one up early on Sunday morning.
Tyler sat at the kitchen island, still in his navy blue sweat pants and simple white t-shirt, with one foot planted on the ground and the other hooked casually on the lower bar of his stool. His hair was an absolute disaster, the boyish waves sticking up this way and that. He had both hands wrapped around a mug of hot tea, his eyes focused on the iPad he had propped up in front of him, and BlueTooth headphones in his ears.
At first, he didn’t notice me, and I slowed my steps, standing silently at the entry of the kitchen and watching him. I’d done everything I could last night to avoid his gaze, to not look at him, and now that I had a stolen moment to observe, I found my chest tightening again, my mouth dry and sticky.
His brown eyes were hidden beneath bent brows, expression serious as he watched whatever was on the screen. Small lines creased the edges of his eyes — lines that weren’t there when we were kids. He’d grown into a man somehow, overnight, it seemed. Then again, it had been years.
I’d seen him on social media, watched from afar as his YouTube channel took off. I’d seen pictures of him on Instagram — traveling through Europe, hiking in Australia, swimming in hot pools in Iceland. I didn’t follow him, of course, but his profile was public, which allowed me to flip through picture after picture on the nights when I was a pathetic mess.
But, pictures and videos didn’t do justice to the actual man who sat studiously at that kitchen island.
He was something between the boy I used to love and the man I’d never know, familiar and unreachable all at once.
Tyler shook his head at something, letting out a frustrated sigh and kicking back the bar stool a little before taking a sip of his tea. His eyes flicked to me then, back to the screen, and then, he did a double take, this time fixing his gaze on me and leaving it there.
Something changed in his eyes when he looked at me, like a shadow passed over them and held him captive. I was dressed in jogger shorts and a modest tank top, but from the way he watched me, I might as well have been completely naked.
That’s what his gaze did to me, what it always had done.
It stripped me bare.
Kandi Steiner is a bestselling author and whiskey connoisseur living in Tampa, FL. Best known for writing “emotional roller-coaster” stories, she loves bringing flawed characters to life and writing about real, raw romance — in all its forms. No two Kandi Steiner books are the same, and if you’re a lover of angsty, emotional, and inspirational reads, she’s your gal. An alumna of the University of Central Florida, Kandi graduated with a double major in Creative Writing and Advertising/PR with a minor in Women’s Studies. She started writing back in the 4th grade after reading the first Harry Potter installment. In 6th grade, she wrote and edited her own newspaper and distributed it to her classmates. Eventually, the principal caught on and the newspaper was quickly halted, though Kandi tried fighting for her “freedom of press.” She took particular interest in writing romance after college, as she has always been a die-hard hopeless romantic, and likes to highlight all the challenges of love as well as the triumphs. When Kandi isn’t writing, you can find her reading books of all kinds, talking with her extremely vocal cat, and spending time with her friends and family. She enjoys live music, traveling, anything heavy in carbs, beach days, movie marathons, craft beer, and sweet wine — not necessarily in that order.
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