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Exclusive Excerpt: 'At the Heart of It' by Tawna Fenske

At the Heart of It
Tawna Fenske




Barnes & Noble

Powell's Books


Indie BookShop

October 2017
On Sale: October 3, 2017
Featuring: Jonah Porter; Kate Geary
ISBN: 1542047307
EAN: 9781542047302
Kindle: B06XWQZTL7
Paperback / e-Book
Add to Wish List

Also by Tawna Fenske:
The Best Kept Secret, September 2021
Just a Little Bet, November 2020
Show Time, July 2020
The Two-Date Rule, March 2020
Add to review list


Kate stopped as her phone began to buzz. She slipped it out of her purse and felt her arms start to tingle as Jonah’s name popped up on the screen. She’d programmed it in after Viv had given her the number, wanting to be prepared in case he did call. “Sorry, I need to take this,” she said, stepping away from the giraffe as she tapped the phone screen to answer.

“Hello, this is Kate Geary,” she said in her best professional voice.

“Kate Geary,” he repeated, his voice smooth and warm the way it had sounded over dinner in Ashland that night. It was so different from how he’d sounded at Viv’s house earlier that day or when she’d chased him down the boardwalk during his shirtless dog-walking exercise. “This is Jonah Porter.”

“Hello, Jonah.”

“Tell me something, Kate Geary,” he said.

“What would you like to know, Jonah Porter?”

Kate wasn’t sure if the name or the flirtatious note in her voice made Amy look up. The assistant producer lifted one eyebrow and turned to look at a copper shelf on the wall.

Jonah laughed on the other end of the line and Kate had another flash of memory to their night in Ashland. The way he’d laughed with his whole body, nearly knocking himself off the front porch of the B&B when she’d declared herself unavailable for a one-night stand.

“Do you have my number programmed into your phone already or do you always answer the phone that stiffly?” he asked.

She tried to think of a reason to be coy or pretend she didn’t know what he was talking about, but she couldn’t see a point to it.

“Did your military super-spy-catching skills tell you that, or are you hiding behind a giant giraffe watching me?”

He laughed again. “I’m afraid to ask where you are that you’re lurking near a giant giraffe.”

“I’m at a consignment shop at the moment. To what do I owe the pleasure of your call?”

He didn’t answer right away, and Kate glanced at Amy to see if she was following along. She was studying a mirror, but Kate was pretty sure she was listening.

“I’m not saying yes,” he said. “To the TV thing, I mean.”


“I need to put that out there up front. But I’m rescinding my ‘hell no’ and replacing it with an ‘I’d like to hear a little more about it.’ Is that still an option?”

Kate nodded, which was ridiculous. He couldn’t see her. But she was almost afraid to speak, not wanting to scare him away.

“Yes,” she said. “I’d be happy to tell you anything. What would you like to know?”

“Not on the phone,” he said, sending another ripple of excitement through her.

Kate gripped the phone a little tighter. “What did you have in mind?”

“I’d prefer to meet in person.”

She glanced toward Amy again, this time catching sight of her own face in the mirror. Holy hell, that wasn’t the look of someone having a business call. That was something else entirely. She forced her features into a neutral expression and hoped Amy hadn’t noticed.

Kate straightened up and looked away from the mirror. “I’m sure that could be arranged,” she said. “My assistant producer and I would be happy to meet with you to go over—”

“No,” he said. “Just you. Sorry, I’m sure she’s a lovely woman. But I want to keep this casual. And I want fewer people involved.”

“Any reason?”

She expected him not to answer, or to make up some story. His answer surprised her. “When I got railroaded into doing the Average Joe thing for the book, it was in a big committee meeting. Everyone started throwing out numbers and statistics and research and Viv was pleading and—I guess I just caved.”

“I appreciate your candor. I can’t promise I won’t throw out statistics and research, but I can promise I won’t plead.”

Jonah laughed. “That’s unfortunate.”




2 comments posted.

Re: Exclusive Excerpt: 'At the Heart of It' by Tawna Fenske

(Kathleen Bylsma 3:50pm October 4, 2017)

Oh man! Cannot wait to read this book! Thanks for the
(Kathleen Bylsma 3:51pm October 4, 2017)

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