Release Blitz & Review - The Difference Between Us by Rachel Higginson
Blurb for The Difference Between Us:
At least when it comes to finding Mr. Right.
I’m tired of men that only want one night stands or blind dates that are nothing but awkward and uncomfortable. I’m tired of avoiding inappropriate text messages and the constant disappointment of always meeting Mr. Wrong.
After all these years of dates that lead nowhere, I can admit that it’s me. I’m the problem. I’m shy and picky and cursed. Definitely cursed.
So I’ve decided two things.
The first? I’m giving up dating and relationships and men in general. Maybe, possibly, forever.
The second? I’m going to have to try harder to avoid Ezra Baptiste.
If I couldn’t hack it in the kiddy pool of dating, I certainly can’t swim in his deep end. He’s too successful. Too intense. He’s all man when I’m used to nothing but boys pretending to be grownups. He’s everything I’m afraid to want and so far out of my league we might as well be different species entirely.
So he’ll need to find a different artist to paint his mural. And a different graphic designer to help him with his website. He’ll need to find someone else to glare at and flirt with and kiss.
My phone buzzed with an incoming email and I resisted the urge to check it during the middle of spin class. I could wait to open it. I didn’t need to know what it said just this second.
Really, it would be fine.
It could wait.
I could wait.
The sender could wait until after I’d sweated off the three pounds of pasta I’d gained this week from my favorite Italian takeout spot to hear back from me.
I couldn’t help the small smile of anticipation that lifted the corners of my mouth though or the way I suddenly didn’t notice the pain from pushing up the hill climb at five-forty-five a.m. Resisting the urge to pick up my phone, I opted for my water bottle instead.
But even after a big, refreshing gulp, I still didn’t manage to lose the smile.
“Why do you look happy?” Vera panted next to me, her legs moving approximately one thousand miles per hour. “You should be miserable right now. At the very least you should be contemplating puking. No smiling.”
“I think I see Jesus,” I wheezed said serenely. “I’ve pedaled myself to death. He’s coming to get me.”
Vann chuckled on my other side. “This is only the warmup.”
“Stop showing off, Vann.” My smile disappeared. “We get it. You’re a super cyclist. The bike seat up your ass isn’t bothering you at all. Stop bragging.” To Vera, I said, “Why did you invite him again?”
“Hey!” Vann protested.
She rolled her eyes. “I didn’t invite him. I tried very hard to keep this a secret from him. But when he heard we were doing something bicycle related, he invited himself.”
“I’m here to motivate you,” he said seriously. “This is good for you girls. You both are in serious need of some cardio.”
“Your face is in serious need of some cardio,” Vera snarled back. At my look of not-the-best-insult-you’ve- ever-come-up-with, she shrugged. “My brain is still sleepy.”
Vann leaned forward on his bike, lifting his bum off the seat and adjusting his bike to make it harder for himself. Because he was crazy and liked weird things- like exercise. This was the end of our friendship forever. I officially hated him. His overachieving did nothing to motivate me to work harder. This was it. This was as hard as I spinned. Spun? My brain was sleepy too.
2. “Are you okay?” he asked with that smooth, even voice that could not be ruffled or perturbed. Ever so elegantly, I pulled myself from my tangled thoughts and replied, “Huh?” “You seem tense,” he added. Champagne forced the truth from my lips. “You make me nervous.” His concentrated gaze found mine. “Why?”
Oh, how to answer that loaded question. I tilted my head to the side, my long hair fell over my shoulder and I confessed, “Probably because the first time we met, you told me my style was juvenile at best.”
His eyebrows drew down. “I didn’t say that.”
The truth strengthened my courage and I added, “You also said that your clientele was too wealthy for my cheap taste, and that if I ever wanted to make it in this city I was going to have to try harder.”
His eyebrows dipped further. “That doesn’t sound like something I would say.”
I laughed. I couldn’t help it. He looked so... affronted! “Are you serious? That sounds exactly like something you would say!” I felt myself loosen up in his arms. His hand pressed tighter against my back, drawing me closer to him. “You asked me for advice and then hated everything I had to say.”
“That’s not at all how I remember it,” he countered, referencing the first time we’d met. Vera and I had made reservations at Lilou and then waited six weeks to get in. When we finally did, Killian had given us the five-star treatment, but Ezra had stopped by our table for all of five minutes. Just long enough to insult me. He continued, “I distinctly remember you calling me an old man with dated taste and a tacky dinosaur of a website.”
I was positive my expression was a mirror image of his, insulted, outraged and maybe, possibly a little ashamed. “I wouldn’t say those things,” I countered. “I’m not that bold.”
His laugh was hard, bit out with the barest amounts of real amusement. “Molly, every single thing about you says otherwise.”