Title:Girl with Guitar
Release date:May 22, 2013
Age Group:New Adult (Mature 17+ content)
Event organized by:AToMR Tours
Barnes and Noble:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/girl-with-guitar-caisey-quinn/1115382236?ean=9781484835265
After Kylie’s dad dies in a freak accident, he leaves her with nothing other than her crazy stepmother, Darla, and the ability to play guitar. When Darla kicks Kylie out and she loses her job all in the same day, she hops a bus to Nashville determined to make her late father’s dreams come true. Waitressing and saving her pennies to record a demo, her big break comes when she’s asked to join a tour going down the tubes with once platinum album-selling country music superstar Trace Corbin. But touring with Trace is hardly a dream come true since he’s pretty much drinking his career down the drain. If Kylie can’t pull Trace out of his rut, he’ll pull her and her dreams down with him.
About the Author
CaiseyQuinn is a wearer of cowgirl boots, writer, and avid reader. She is a lover of wine and is addicted to chai tea lattes. She is also the brand spanking new author of several New Adult romances including Girl with Guitarand soon to be released Keep Me Still(which may or may not include spanking).Caisey is a Gemini, wife, mom, and former high school English teacher living in Birmingham, Alabama, who spends her days chasing a three-year-old and hiding away with her MacBook. She spends her nights writing and is a firm believer that sleep is overrated.Currently she is hard at work on Girl on Tour, the second book in the Kylie Ryans series.
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She cut the song off before the last chorus and opened her eyes. “Well?” she asked, looking up at Tonya. Who had tears in her eyes. “Whoa, hey, what’s wrong?”
“That was beautiful, really. It was like you knew my whole life story, which you don’t, thank God.”
“Thanks.” Kylie beamed.
“But you can’t play that tonight,” Tonya said evenly, dabbing her tears away with a bar napkin.
Her heart sank into her stomach. “I can’t?”
“No.” Kylie watched Tonya’s eyes harden as she gripped her shoulder. “Listen to me, kid. I know a few things. Like for one, your life’s goal is probably not to be a waitress in a honky tonk. And for two, I know that all you really want is to make it big in country music like every other kid in this town, and that’s all fine and good and I’ll say I knew you when. Matter of fact, hold up, sign this napkin.”
Kylie’s mouth gaped open at her friend’s blunt observations. And she was seriously holding out a napkin and a pen. Slowly, Kylie took it and scribbled her name across it.
“But here’s what else I know. If you go play that sappy song that no one knows the words to, everyone will smile and nod and keep right on drinking. The managers and talent scouts that show will keep texting on their phones and someone somewhere might say, ‘That was a nice song,’ or ‘She was cute,’ and that will be it.”
“Okay, so…” Kylie was still too stunned to say much of anything. Tears threatened behind her eyes. This was the song she’d worked so hard on, put so much of herself into. Wasn’t it a good thing to be original?
“So you get your cute little butt out there, you sing some Taylor Swift or Kelly whoever cover, and you shake it up and make it your own so the audience can sing along while not comparing you to whoever really sings the damn thing.”
“Oh, is that all? Well, that should be a piece of cake. Thanks for the advice.” Kylie rolled her eyes and left them focused on the ceiling so her tears wouldn’t fall.
“Look, you can sing, you play good enough. You’re kinda sexy and all that stuff they want. I wouldn’t waste my breath or my time, Kylie, if you didn’t just blow me the hell away, but I know this town. If this was your first day of meeting with a label exec, I’d say bust that song out. But this is a bar, and you need to get their attention fist. The guys who come in here are looking for one thing. Acts that bring in money. People want to hear that song that makes them stand up and sing along and stay up drinking and partying all night. Think you can do that?”
Kylie swallowed hard, pushed her tears back behind her eyes, and forced a smile. She’d grown up without a mother. Buried the only man she’d ever loved less than a year ago. Lost everything in the blink of an eye. Surely she could do this. “Yeah. Yeah I can.”
“Good, ‘cause no matter what they call it, this shit ain’t for amateurs.” Tonya stood, offering her a weak smile before leaving Kylie all alone to figure out what the hell she was going to do.
There was only one way out of this. Okay, maybe two. Duck and hide and risk losing her job, or face the man whose song she’d just butchered in front of several hundred people. And risk losing her job.
Well, she’d never been one to back down, and she’d never ducked and hid from anyone in her life. Certainly not some cocky-ass country music singer who everyone knew was pretty much drinking his career down the drain.
“Can I get you a drink, Mr. Corbin?” Kylie asked in the sweetest tone she could muster, stepping towards the stage.
“No, ma’am. Got one,” he told her, winking at the audience and lifting a beer bottle in her direction. Thick dark hair peeked out from under a trucker’s hat, and muscular suntanned forearms flexed at the end of his rolled up shirtsleeves. His bright white smile was framed by boyish dimples, and damn those jeans were doing things to her.
“Then what can I do for you?” she asked, rolling her eyes at the crowd as if she was annoyed with the megastar for interrupting her work. Good Lord. If they only knew that her heart was beating triple time against her ribs.
“Well, since you stole my song, the least you could do would be come up here and sing with me,” he slurred. For heaven’s sakes, the man was half drunk. And geez, could his jeans get any tighter? Focus, Kylie.
“Excuse me, sir. You mean to tell me you sing a song about bein’ a single girl that can’t be tied down?” The audience cracked up all around her.
“She’s cute, Clive. Where’d you find this one?” Trace bellowed across the bar. Kylie didn’t look to see what Clive did, but she could see a few cell phone screens lighting up the room. This was definitely going to be on YouTube. Trace Corbin was going to make sure she never got recognized in the industry, unless it was by people laughing at her.
“Well, pick a song already. I got tables to wait on,” Kylie said, hopping back onto the stage.
He eyed her carefully as he lifted his guitar. “You gonna change the words all up? Make me look like a fool?”
“Oh no, darlin.’ Pretty sure you can handle that all on your own,” Kylie answered with a flirty grin.
She prayed she looked like she was keeping her cool, but the last time she’d seen this man he was on CMT and she was watching from her bedroom in Okla-fricking-homa. And holy hell if he wasn’t even hotter in person. He smelled like aftershave and bourbon. Kylie decided then and there that she’d never be able to get a whiff of either without recalling this moment.
“Trace?” Pauly called from the front of the bus.
Kylie was already dressed so she stepped out of her room.
“Kylie, you seen Trace?”
“No, not recently, why?” No he was not doing this again. No fucking way.Pauly muttered something equally as harsh under his breath and stomped off the bus. Her mind raced. What was his freaking deal? Was he trying to get dropped from Capital Letter Records, the biggest damn label in Nashville? Whatever, not her problem. Him pulling another no-show where the audience would blame her and then the tour getting canceled before she could blink, that was her problem.
Kylie racked her brain as she made her way to the bar. Surely Pauly had checked the green room. Some bars, nice ones like this, had private party rooms for VIPs only, according to Tonya. If she could get into the one here at The Texas Player’s Club, she’d drag Trace Corbin out by his ass, stick her arm up it, and do his entire set ventriloquist style if she had do.
Pushing through the crowd, she found a back hallway backstage similar to the one at The Rum Room. After several failed attempts, she found a locked door with voices, mostly high-pitched female ones, coming from within.
Freaking hell, she did not want to think about what was happening on the other side of that door. But she had to get in somehow. Yanking a bobby pin from her hair, she took a deep breath to brace herself for whatever lewd acts she might be about to witness. Just as she was about to pick the lock like her dad had taught her to do in case she ever forgot her house key when he worked late, a male voice from behind her stopped her.
“No need to pick the lock, sweetheart. Pretty girl like you can come in as my personal guest.”
Running lights on the floor illuminated the interior of the bus just enough to keep her from falling and breaking her neck on her way to the kitchenette. She reached out and felt around for the switch under the cabinets that lit up the area above the sink. She had just flicked it on when Trace’s bedroom door opened.
Her heart stuttered and Kylie froze. If the blonde from the bar was in there with him, Kylie was taking her ass to that Winnebago dressed just as she was.
Taking a few deep breaths to brace herself, she turned. Trace stood in the doorway, his dark shirtless figure making her heart race.
“Couldn’t sleep,” she said softly. He just stared at her, reminding her with his scorching gaze that she was dressed in a thin nightshirt that barely reached her thighs. “No company tonight?” she asked, doing her best to keep her voice light, unaffected.
Trace said nothing as he stalked towards her slowly, the force of his stare backing her against the counter.
“Trace,” she said softly as he came close enough to touch.
Still nothing. Just his eyes burning into hers as his bare chest expanded with each breath. His hair was a mess, like he’d spent all night raking his hands through it, and he was barefoot in jeans. Kylie was pretty sure this was the hottest she’d ever seen him. Heat flooded her body, liquefying the lust between her thighs.
The sensation became so intense it was almost painful. Before she had time to ask him what he was doing, Trace’s strong hands gripped her and lifted her onto the counter. His labored breathing was the only sound she heard as he used those same hands to spread her knees apart. Kylie whimpered when he moved forward to press himself between them.
This was not the Trace Corbin she was used to. This man had pleading eyes and was trembling to the point of vibrating with…want. Or maybe it was need. Kylie wasn’t sure. The muscles holding her rigid relaxed under his warm hands. He trailed them up her thighs, to her hips, finally reaching up and touching her face with gentleness she hadn’t expected him to be capable of. His thumb grazed her bottom lip and it sent a shock straight through her, causing her to arch into him.
“You played those boys tonight.” His quiet ragged voice raked over her.
She couldn’t speak, so she nodded. Yes.
“You been playing me?” He pinned her with an intense stare she struggled to return.
This time she shook her head no.
When he let his hands fall back to her hips, she reached up and placed her fingers in his hair, using the lush brown locks to pull him closer. His head dropped below hers with a soft moan, and she could feel him breathing her in. She took advantage of the opportunity to do the same. Bourbon, aftershave, and that woodsy scent that was all Trace. No cheap perfume from his friend from earlier. Trace’s soft warm lips brushed against her neck, sending another shiver through her with so much force it would’ve jolted her off the counter had he not been holding her in place. “I’m sorry about what happened in Jackson,” he whispered. “God, I’m so sorry.” His voice was thick and raw and broke something inside of her.
She still couldn’t manage to get any words to reach her mouth, so she just gripped him tighter. She’d already forgiven him.
Her mind raced with questions. The most pressing one being, what the hell are we doing? But somehow it didn’t seem important to figure it out right that second. She wanted this, ached for it. She hadn’t even realized how badly until that very moment. Holding him close to her felt right. Safe. As if this was what she had needed all along. This is what would take the pain away.
Trace pulled away, just a few inches, but Kylie moaned her displeasure. She tried to pull him back in, biting her lip when he shook his head. God, those eyes. Take cover, they said, because the storm was here, now. And Kylie wanted nothing more than to hurl herself right into its path.
She didn’t know what he was looking for, but his eyes sought answers in hers that she didn’t have. She didn’t even know what the question was. She just wanted him. Like she had never wanted anything or anyone in her entire life.
Cupping her chin firmly, Trace leaned in and oh, oh she was more than ready for his mouth. But he didn’t kiss her. He pressed his forehead to hers and closed his eyes. “So damn beautiful,” he rasped.
Gripping his hips and pulling him as close as possible, until the only thing keeping them apart was the thin lace of her panties and the denim of his jeans, Kylie let her hand stroke his stubbled cheek. She pulled her legs up to wrap them around his waist and Trace let loose a deep growl that had her throbbing against him. The intimacy of it was like nothing she’d ever experienced, taking her higher than even performing on stage had. Trace Corbin should come with a warning label: highly addictive.