The Sound of Temptation, an all new epic and passionate standalone romance from Wall Street Journal bestselling author Dylan Allen is available now!
Unbelievably gorgeous, wildly talented, and on the cusp of stardom,
Carter Bosch was the kind of man I’d never dared to dream of.
But the summer he showed up in my small town – city slick and full of promises –
He put stars in my eyes and hope in my heart.
He called me his muse and said we were meant to be.
And until the day he broke my heart, I believed him.
Ten years later, his reputation tarnished by scandal and personal tragedy, Carter’s back.
He begins a relentless pursuit to win me back, but those stars in my eyes have been replaced by flames.
And for a chance to claim my ticket to freedom, I made a deal with the devil that I dare not break.
But, a rock god fallen from grace is still a god,
And a woman with her walls up, is still a woman.
Soon, my foolish heart is torn between duty and desire.
When it finally falls, he stands ready to claim it.
Just when we think we can see forever, a dark secret is revealed that rips us apart.
Loving him is forbidden, but my heart can’t let him go.
Because Carter and I are meant to be.
And what’s meant to be will find a way.
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“I promise I won’t say a word. You can just pretend I’m not here.”
His eyes narrow. When with no warning, he wraps an arm around my waist and pulls me into his body.
I’m average height for a woman, but he’s above average height for a man, and my eyes are level with his collarbone. I have to drag my eyes up the smooth, tan column of his throat, past his square, lightly bearded chin, over the twin mounds of perfection that are his lips, up the tiny bump in the ridge of his strong nose to his eyes.
And the look in them sends my pulse into a sprint. The unabashed adoration threatens to catapult me back in time. He’s always looked at me like this…like he could see the same magic I imagined.
But the naked need in them is new, and it keeps me firmly tethered to the present.
He runs a finger along my temple, tracing my hairline before he cups the back of my head with his hand. Gooseflesh ripples across my neck and runs up my scalp. My heart is beating out of my chest.
“I thought my memories of you were inflated, but they weren’t even close.” His voice is soft and deep and vibrates between us.
“In—” I have to clear my throat. “In what way?”
“Your skin is so soft. I’ve missed touching it. Seeing it.” His fingers sink into my hair, and his grip around my waist tightens.
“I see.” My body is one big pulse point, and I know he can feel it beating in time with his.
He’s looking at me like he’s seen all my sketches and knows he can have me anyway he wants.
And this is why I put on the worst underwear imaginable.
I knew this was going to happen, and Lord help me, ninety percent of me wants to let it.
I disentangle myself from the sweet cradle of his arms and step away. “You ready?” I plaster a smile on my face.
His eyes blaze with frustration, and he blows out a harsh breath. He drops his gaze to the floor and is quiet for so long that I’m afraid he’s going to say no. But then he looks up and claps his hands together with a resigned but good-natured smile lifting the corners of his lips. “Absolutely. You draw, I’ll play,” he recites it like a mantra and then retreats to the piano.
I stare longingly at his broad muscular back for a beat before I sit down.
As he circles the piano, he runs the flat of his hand over the top in a stroke that’s reverent. He smiles to himself and skims his fingers along the keys.
“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything,” He sits on the bench and starts to play a bright, little melody one-handed while he talks. “Plato said that.”
“Well, tell me what Carter Bosch has to say.”
He bites his lip and then laughs as he starts to use both of his hands. I don’t recognize the song he’s playing, but for now it’s just background music for our conversation.“I would say music is the miracle that saved me.”
His eyes slide to me, and the look in them steals my breath. It’s the wide open vulnerability that comes with being in love…
“It saved you?” And now, I’m jealous of a piano.
He nods. His fingers dance lightly over the keys, playing scales, slowly, deftly. “Let me play for you.” His voice is deep, sensual, and a tremor of excited anticipation runs through me.
Without taking his eyes off me, he starts.
“Oh,” I gasp in surprise when I realize it’s The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. – the same he played the first time he came here.
Just like that night, I’m defenseless against the light that his music bears. It seeps through the fractures in the thick armor I’ve put around the places and spaces that are most vulnerable.
I feel the thaw immediately. Just like that, a long, dark winter ends. Color and light spring to life illuminating all the things I haven’t been able to see for so long. Hungry to capture it, I open my eyes and reach for my sketch pad.
Carter is lost to the song too. His head is tilted back like he’s gazing at the ceiling, but his eyes are closed. He and the piano work in effortless unison to create what to my heart, mind, soul, and body, is the very sound of temptation, hope, and courage, and love.
When I hear it, I can do anything.
I’m not stupid. I know nothing lasts forever, but while I have this light, I’m going to revel in it.
About Dylan Allen
Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author, Dylan Allen is a Texas girl with a serious case of wanderlust.
A self-proclaimed happily ever junkie, she loves creating stories where her characters chase their own happy endings.
When she isn’t writing or reading, eating or cooking, she and her family are planning their next adventure.
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