Publication Date: May 2, 2016
Genres: Romantic Suspense, Erotic Romance, Organized Crime
PURCHASE (#Free with #KINDLEUNLIMITED!): Amazon
Synopsis: Calisto DonatiShe was just a woman. That’s what Calisto wanted to tell himself; that’s what he wanted to believe. Emma was nothing more than a woman. There were other women for him to want. To obsess over. It couldn’t be Emma Sorrento. Not for Calisto. She was taken. She was claimed. She was not his. In a few days, Calisto would hand her off, and that would be that. He wondered why it wouldn’t be that easy to let her go. What good had saving her done? He had simply taken her from one monster to give her to another. Emma Sorrento Emma slid on her mask. All someone would need to do was look close enough to see what was really beneath the sheer falseness of her smile. At the other end of the table, Emma found her lies staring her right in the face. He smirked. And winked. Calisto Donati was her worst mistake, her greatest shame, and the one thing she still wanted more than anything. Emma could still feel him all over her, long after his touch and kiss was gone. In thirty days, her entire world had changed—he had changed her. Emma had a feeling that if she played another game with Calisto, she would surely lose. She had already lost once. Wasn’t it enough? WARNING: The first two books in the Donati Bloodlines Trilogy end on a cliffhanger, and are not considered safe romance.
THIN LIES - MUSIC PLAYLIST
“Maximo,” Affonso said, “are we just about ready to leave for the church?”
Emma was shocked that her uncle was going to church at all. He hadn’t returned to the Catholic church since he divorced his first wife. Maybe it was another way for Maximo to extend a hand to Affonso in friendship. She wasn’t sure.
Her uncle nodded. “Yes, we are. The cars are waiting.”
“We’ll catch up in a minute,” Affonso replied to Maximo. “I want a second alone with Emma, if you wouldn’t mind, old friend.”
Maximo passed Emma a look as if to silently ask if she was okay with the request herself. Emma didn’t see how her opinion of things mattered at all. It hadn’t before, so why would it now?
Before long, the house had cleared of people but for Affonso and another man standing at the bay window. The color streaming in through the glass bathed him in bright light, showcasing a tall frame and broad shoulders hugged by a tailored suit. His dark hair was cropped short, but it was still long enough for him to run his fingers through as he lifted a glass of water in his hand to take a drink.
“Now that we’re alone,” Affonso said, turning to Emma.
She shot the quiet man with his back turned a look. “Um—”
“My nephew always stays close by. Ignore him. As I said earlier, I was promised a girl who knew her place, Emma. I want to make sure you understand everything that means.”
“I think you explained it well enough.”
“Then why are you trembling like a little leaf?” he asked.
Emma stilled on the spot. She hadn’t realized that she was still shaking. “I’m nervous.”
Affonso frowned. “Calisto?”
The man at the window turned his head slightly, just enough to stare at his uncle and Emma. Dark brown, almost black, eyes and a strong jaw framed the man’s face. His sharp cheekbones and unsmiling lips hardened his features, but it still stunned Emma.
It stunned her because he was … beautiful.
A hint of something dangerous and sinful wafted from the young man as the corner of his mouth tugged upwards into something resembling a smirk or even a sneer. She couldn’t be sure. Long fingers wrapped tighter around the glass he was holding, drawing Emma’s attention to the fact he wore no wedding band and his hands seemed strong.
She could clearly see the resemblance between the younger man—Calisto, Affonso had said—and his uncle.
“Sì?” Calisto asked.
“Cal, ottenere vino. Fill a glass. Hurry, before someone comes back and bitches about her age and drinking.”
Calisto chuckled deeply. The sound came out dark and heavy, and his tall, fit frame rocked with movement. Emma thought he sounded almost musical, even if the man looked entirely bored with the situation and day.
“Whatever you need, zio.”
Then, Calisto was gone.
“Wine?” Emma asked.
“It’ll take the edge off for you,” Affonso said, smiling widely. “As long as you’re a good girl, Emma, I will always take care of you.”
A good girl.
Emma felt sick again.
“And of course, Cal will always be around to keep an eye on you when I can’t,” Affonso added. “He’s closer to your age, at twenty-seven. Too bad, really. Had he wanted what I wanted for him, then I wouldn’t need you at all, Emma.”
What was that supposed to mean?
“I prefer Emmy,” she said.
It was the only thing that came to her mind. She felt stupid for even saying it, but it was better than spitting out how disgusted the man made her.
“Emmy,” Affonso echoed. “Sounds a bit girlish and young, doesn’t it?”
Suddenly, a presence was behind Emma. She knew Calisto was back before he’d even said a thing.
“Here,” Calisto said, handing Emma a glass of wine.
Her fingers brushed his and warmth spread up her arm. She pulled her limb and the wine glass back as fast as she could, but not before dropping her gaze.
“Thank you,” she said.
“I prefer Emmy,” Calisto said quietly.
Emma’s head jerked up, finding Calisto watching her curiously.
“Pardon?” Affonso asked.
“Her name. Emmy. I like it.”
Emma tipped her wine glass up and gulped down a mouthful just to keep from smiling. Who was this man? A few minutes ago, he seemed like he didn’t care who she was or if she was even breathing.
“It’s got a nice ring, zio,” Calisto added. “Rolls off the tongue, if you know what I mean.”
Affonso scowled. “You would think so, Cal. Hurry up with the wine, Emma. We have things to do and people to see. A good Don doesn’t keep people waiting. You’ve spent enough time around Maximo to know this.”
Emma drank her wine a little bit slower.