About Author Nikki

Nikki Prince is a mother of two, who’s always had a dream to be a published author in the romance genre. Her passion lies in raising her children as readers, gaming, cooking, reading and her writing. Her mother can now breathe easy about the child who used to get in trouble because she was hiding books everywhere and reading when it wasn’t appropriate. Nikki’s a multi-published author with several epublishing houses. She loves to write Interracial romances in all genres, but wants to let everyone know to not box her in, because there is always room for growth.

Differentiation

Lays is a potato chip company first introduced in Canada in 1932 that makes a variety of potato chips and was bought by PepsiCo in 1965 and is under the Frito-Lays brand.  Lay’s promises its consumers, “Wherever celebrations and good times happen, the LAY’S® brand will be there just as it has been for more than 75 years. With flavors almost as rich as our history, we have a chip or crisp flavor guaranteed to bring a smile on your face” (Frito-Lay North America, 2020).  “Lay’s potato chips come in over 200 flavors” (Attride, 2020) according to, Tiana Attride.  Pringles is an American stackable potato chip company founded in 1967 by Proctor & Gamble and then sold to Kellogg’s in 2012.  Pringles has 162 flavors readily available in most markets. “Pringles comes in many different flavors but is best known for its original version” (Snack History, 2020). 

 Each company utilizes social media such as Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.  Both companies also have user friendly websites in which a customer can easily find out how to buy their products, what new offerings they have along with videos with celebrity endorsements.  They also both use humor to get their points across, as well as polls and visuals to garner engagement with consumers.  Across the board on their social media platforms the companies are consistent in their messaging to win over new consumers and to keep their current consumers.  Both companies run promotions on their websites that consumers can sign up for coupons, sweepstakes, and receive updates.  Lays has PepsiCo Tasty Rewards while Pringles has Kellogg’s Family Rewards.

Lays is running a campaign #SmileWithLays which is a promotion to showcase people who go above and beyond in their communities and by doing so they are featured on Lay’s social media as well as their smile being placed on bags of chips.  This campaign is being used to showcase everyday people who make a difference in their community on the website it states, “Lay’s is celebrating people across the country who inspire smiles in their communities in extraordinary ways. From a man who inspired hundreds of teens to mow their neighbors’ lawns to a retired nurse who founded a food pantry, these people go above and beyond to share kindness and joy… Each Smile with Lay’s bag you buy helps us reach our goal of a $1 million donation to Operation Smile – a nonprofit that changes and saves lives one smile at a time” (Now This, 2020).  This is a great way to get people interested in Lays products as well as to keep their current consumers and produce brand loyalty and make their brand personal to its consumers by participating in philanthropy. 

  1. Has 767 posts and 968k followers on Instagram
  2. 42.6k Tweets and 456.5k followers on Twitter
  3. 6,556,007 likes and 6,450,322 followers on Facebook
  4. 77.6k subscribers on YouTube but hasn’t posted anything for 4 weeks ago.

Pringles has taken the approach to realizing that people have been in quarantine since the beginning of the year and that sports has had to change from public viewing to virtual enjoyment.  The campaign is called #CrunchTimeCam in which they are asking their consumers to Tweet one of the below hashtags to receive exclusive behind the scenes content of their favorite team while they enjoy virtually.  This gets consumers excited and starts engagement through user generated content since they can’t go to a game in person because of COVID-19.

  1. 295 posts and 670k followers on Instagram
  2. 30.1k Tweets and 437.8k followers on Twitter
  3. 23,705,822 likes and 23,669,491 followers on Facebook
  4. 13.3k subscribers on YouTube and last post was a month ago.

One thing noted is that while Lays has more followers on most social media, Pringles has overtaken them with likes and followers on Facebook.  This is where Pringles excels on social media in comparison to Lays. Whether it be Pringles or Lays that is your flavor of choice both companies seem to be doing a bang-up job to please their consumers. Do you have a favorite? Or do you like them equally?  I personally like them both for different reasons. Lays because of nostalgia and taste. Pringles for something different.

References

Attride, T. (2020, July 21). 10 things you probably didn’t know about Lay’s potato chips. Insider. https://www.insider.com/lays-fun-facts-potato-chips-2018-11.

Frito-Lay North America. (2020). About Lays. Home. https://www.lays.com/about-us.

Frito-Lay North America. (2020). Company Story: FritoLay. Home. https://www.fritolay.com/about-frito-lay/company-story.

Lays. (2020). Lay’s. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/lays.

Lays. (2020). Lays. Login • Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/lays/.

Now This. (2020). Lays Smile Stories. Now This. https://nowthisnews.com/lays-smiles.

Pringles. (2020). Pringles. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/PringlesUS.

Pringles. (2020). Pringles. Twitter. https://twitter.com/Pringles.

Pringles. (2020). Pringles. Login • Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/pringlesus/.

Pringles. (2020). Pringles®: Home. Pringles® | Home. https://www.pringles.com/us/home.html.

Snack History. (2020). Pringles. Snack History. https://www.snackhistory.com/pringles.

Dante’s Hope by Jenn Nixon with a Giveaway!

A curse, a vision, and a secret.

With a flimsy piece of evidence and a Psychic vision, “Miss Butterfly”, crashes the Reyes Brother’s charity fundraiser hoping one of them believes in curses. She has a devastating secret and they may be her last chance to get answers.

Fearing the affliction haunting him is tied to the alluring woman roaming through his library, Dante agrees to help her, fighting the powerful attraction building between them.

Together they scour centuries’ worth of myths and legends, determined to find the truth. Neither is prepared when they discover their intense connection may be the key to breaking the curse.

Excerpt:

Perched on the second story walkway, overlooking the crowd piling into the oversized dining hall, Dante Reyes sighed, unsure how many more of these events his brother would force him to organize and attend before the end of the year. While he enjoyed supporting worthy causes, hopping from country to country for the last eight months was wearing him thin. Grateful to be back in one of their homes for an extended period, he watched the couples of Psychics and nulls filling his home, wondering how many of them were native to London. The city had changed so much in the ten years they’d been gone.

The air sizzled with building energy. Hoping the effervescent and happy vibe bouncing through the room soothed him for a few hours, Dante shut his eyes and breathed in to absorb and charge his body using the energy below.

Drake busted through the double doors behind him, breaking his concentration. “There you are.”

“Here I am,” he replied.

“Last one, okay?”

He glanced back and lifted his brow. “Do you mean it, brother?”

“Yes, okay, yes. Such a grumpy immortal you’ve become.”

“We are not immortal.” He grumbled, turned, and stared at the crowd, ignoring the decorative blue Colombina mask floating next to his face. Drake chuckled and Shifted it closer, honing the skill quicker than he had. Dante swiped the mask from the air and fixed it in place, aware the coloring drew attention to his eyes.

“Your best feature, my man. ‘Cuz your attitude is trash.”

“Forgive me for tiring of meaningless interludes with a string of overzealous participants.”

“Casual. Sex. It’s not that hard to say, and you know that’s not why I do this. Just a perk. Maybe if you didn’t talk like the stuffy old goat that you are people would stop calling you one.” He slapped a hand on Dante’s back.

To win a signed paperback and a gift card click here: http://www.jennnixon.com/giveaways/dantes-hope-giveaway/

About the author:

Twitter: @Jennnixon Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JennNixonAuthor/ Website: www.jennnixon.com

Summer Romance Reading Giveaway! African American, Interracial and/or Multiracial Romance!

Featuring African American, Interracial, and/or Multicultural Romance novels available on Apple Books, Kobo, & Nook. Plus enter to win an Amazon Gift Card. http://www.blacklovebooks.com/summer-reading-2020 #blacklovebooks #summerreading #diverseromance #wideromance TWITTER READY POST SUMMER ROMANCE READING for every device. #Giveaway featuring African American, Interracial, and Multicultural romance novels. http://www.blacklovebooks.com/summer-reading-2020 @blacklovebooks #IARTG #pdf1 #bookdeals #booklovers #aaromance #irromance #multicultural #diversebooks #kindle #ibooks #kobo #nook

It has been a while…

Greetings my friends. Sorry it has been so long since I’ve done an email.  Almost 2 years to be exact.  I’d   moved to Texas in 2018.  In Texas, I was teaching and trying to survive being a single parent of two teens in a state far from my home and family.  I did survive a year and came back to California in June 2019.  So much has happened since then.   2020 came in with all kind of crazy…such as #BlackLivesMatter, Quarantine because of Covid 19.  I hope you all are faring well through the madness and finding some solace.

I know that life is crazy right now and I’m hoping in this time of quarantine you and yours are thriving and surviving.  I know how much a good read can make the difference and was so glad to get back into the groove of writing.  I have several stories coming out and wanted to share. 

I have a Facebook Readers group where I have other authors stop by, there are games, giveaways at times and interaction daily!  Come join us: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1114070102066354/ 

In other news I have started a natural products business!  Quarantine will make you find ways to keep sane for sure.  Besides writing this has been a wonderful experience and so much fun.  Right now I have mainly homemade soap.  Check me out.  You can find me on Facebook under N.P. Naturals here:  https://www.facebook.com/NPNaturalsOne
Some pictures of the some of the soaps


And now on to the book news!

After a bitter divorce three years earlier, Dyani Delacroix has focused all her energy on her job as a professor at the local university. So, when her star student, Caleb Tegner, begins to flunk out, she immediately calls him in for a meeting. The last thing she expects is to be the one taught a lesson when Caleb unleashes a passion she can’t resist.

Available July 9th, 2020 on preorder now!

Buy Links:
                                      AMAZONUS        AMAZONUK           AMAZONCA


Indelible scars and memories chase us like ghosts.

He was supposed to be coming home. But not like this, never like this. I’d always dreamed that one day Quinton Grayson would be mine. Now he’s back and we’re both dealing with paralyzing guilt. Does wanting him make sense when I have the responsibility to take care of my nephew? Quinton is holding back; dare I find out why?

When you’re on the sand you’re supposed to leave everything there. Unfortunately, I’ve brought it back to Arlington Heights and Lyric Scott’s doorstep. My body reveals all the scars for everyone to see, but the ones on my soul are graver. Will she even look my way? What can I possibly offer her other than to keep the promise I made to her brother, my best friend who I couldn’t bring back?

We’re a ready-made family now, how can I walk away? But how can I allow her to deal with the demons at my door?

Available August 7th, 2020 on preorder now!

Buy Links:

Amazon US    

Amazon UK     

Amazon CA


Book 2 (Undeniable Series)

She knows her heart is at risk

Professor Âine Reid has crushed on Darian Tisdale since college. She succumbed to his sexy charms more than once, but when he made it clear he only wanted friends with benefits, she friend-zoned him, no benefits on offer. Now co-workers up for the same tenure track promotion, Âine has more reason than ever to keep Darian at arm’s length. He tempts her like no other, but she values his friendship too much to take another risk with her heart.

Can he prove that he’s changed?

Darian knows he hurt Âine long ago. He wants to prove that he’s now ready for more and to take their friendship to the next, more permanent and sexy level. He thinks she feels the same except when she signs up for a dating site, Darian knows he has his work cut out for him. He’s all in for the challenge except there’s the career making promotion they are both up for.

Can their friendship and sizzling chemistry combust to create a win-win for them both?

Available September 14, 2020 on preorder now!

Buy Links:

AmazonUS     AmazonUK     AmazonCA
Barnes&Noble     AppleBooks    KOBO 

Orkut, Goodbye? Hello?

Orkut was a social media networking site launched in 2004 owned and operated by Google and named after its creator Orkut Büyükkökten a Google employee created that ended in 2014.  The social media platforms purpose was for its users to be able to find communities.  As stated by L. Meghan Mahoney and Tang Tang, “Community is a natural necessity for humans” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017 ).  With that being said we can see why social media has become a hit and is addicting, is because its users want to find places where the feel they belong, where they can communicate with other users of like minds.  Social media works because it allows consumers/users to communicate with each other as well as with the platform rather than the business or platform talking “with a mass audience with a single media message” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017).  By giving users the ability to communicate on social media it allows them to share their experiences and stories.

Orkut was a user-friendly platform which made it easy for users to join and move through the site to join communities. It allowed its users to:

Rate other users on how sexy, cool and trustworthy they found each other

Privacy concerns for its users was high

Users could search for classmates and friends

Communities that users could join online schools, workplaces, and residential street groups

Allowed direct communication with others, recommend products and services to their friends with ease

Combine technology and culture (Mahoney & Tang, 2019).

Orkut was a leading social media site in Brazil.  Because outdoor advertising is banned in Brazil there was a wave online marketing.  According to Loren Baker there are several reasons Orkut was a hit in Brazil. Those reasons consisted of:

Brazilians are just very community-oriented.

Orkut is easy to pronounce in Portuguese making it easy to remember.

Users can prequalify the friends they make.

Mobility ease of use.

Competition, awards, fan citations, friendship offerings (Baker, 2009).

Photo by Perry Grone on Unsplash

Being able to attract others in the community that had the same connections which built a strong community of “150,000 communities” (Mahoney & Tang, 2019).  Orkut was a trailblazer in showing how to utilize social networking.  In being one of the firsts, Orkut lost their advantage through:

Novelty wearing off.

Technology changing (growing) and not following the changes.

Stopped meeting the needs of their target audience.

Functionality problems with the website (Mahoney & Tang, 2019).

Competition such as Facebook used better coding and grew faster.

In order to continue to be a leader in social media a platform must keep up with technological advances as well as the needs of their target audience.  Although the interface was user friendly, the issue of slow loading graphics, outdated coding, and something as simple as the homepage being the users profile versus, “…Facebook and Twitter both are different, because the home page is about other people. As soon as you log in, you see what others are doing” (Bhasin, 2018).  Plain and simply put, Orkut fell short because they did not keep up with technology or their users needs.  In this fast-paced world, a company must keep up with the newest tech to stay relevant and to keep their users attention.  One thing I would suggest to Orkut which has rebranded to “Hello Network,” under the same website www.orkut.com and launched in India in 2018, is that they must research their competition, ask their users for feedback to find out what they want, and to use better coding.  According to Dutta Moupiya, Orkut stated, “This app is built specifically for the new mobile-generation seeking to bring people together around their interests to create positive, meaningful, authentic connections” (Moupiya, 2018).  One can hope that Orkut Büyükkökten has learned from the mistakes made with Orkut and that their Hello app will bring him much success and their users what they need and want.  

What are the issues that you find with the platforms you use?

Bhasin, H. (2018, March 09). 7 marketing lessons from Orkut – orkut marketing lessons. Retrieved December 20, 2019, from https://www.marketing91.com/7-marketing-lessons-orkut/

Mahoney, L. M., & Tang, T. (2017). Strategic social media: From marketing to social change. Chichester, United Kingdom: Wiley-Blackwell.

Moupiya, D. (2018, April 11). New alternative to facebook, Orkut founder Launches hello app in India. Retrieved December 20, 2019, from https://www.techgenyz.com/2018/04/11/orkut-founder-launches-hello-app-india/

One App to Rule Them All

In America we have a lot of different apps to do a plethora of different things.  Such as Facebook where you can share pictures, stories, comment on other users’ pictures and stories, as well as buy and sell things.  There is also Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, and Twitter to name a few more apps that we use consistently to share our world.  In China, however they aren’t allowed to use outside apps as they are banned.  They have Weixin (pronounced “way-shin”) which is also called WeChat.  Weixin was founded in 2011 by Tencent and has quickly become the main social media platform that “allows its users to send messages, share news, and pictures via their mobile phone” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017)  I find myself fascinated by the thought of having just one app that would take care of all my needs versus having to use several apps that clog up my cell phone and if I’m honest can be a time suck. 

Reading the case study about Weixin, I have found out that the application is not only a “combination of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and eBay” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017), it is also user friendly.  One would think with so much packed into an app that it would be hard to navigate because of complexity. Mahoney and Tang state, “Weixin allows its users to record messages by simply holding on one button and talking, which saves the trouble of typing Chinese characters on the phone” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017).  To have such ease when trying to get a message out makes the app a dream application.  There is also the fact that when news is being read on the application it doesn’t send the reader to an outside website the reader is linked directly to the URL within the app!  Oh, how glorious that would be to have that function within the apps we currently use.  Shannon Liao from The Verge says, “WeChat has 902 million daily users, and about 38 billion messages are sent on the platform every day. Last year, Tencent added mini-apps to WeChat, creating an app store of sorts: inside WeChat, you can play games, pay bills, find local hangouts, book doctor appointments, file police reports, hail taxis, hold video conferences, and access bank services. State-run media and government agencies also have official WeChat accounts, where they can directly communicate with users” (Liao, 2018).  For instance, when I use Facebook a lot of the time the app will send me to the news website and completely take me out of Facebook.  A true annoyance to be sure, because if I’m, using Facebook I want to use Facebook and not be redirected somewhere else.

It’s amazing that this one application has so many functions that are just helpful in everyday life.  If this type of app came to America we would not need, Lyft, Uber, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, various news applications, banking apps and a whole lot more applications would become defunct.  I honestly don’t see this happening here or perhaps anywhere else because that would most likely mean those other platforms would be out of business.  There is also the fact that this app is a state-run application and as we know most of us don’t want the government in our business let alone in our applications.  Tencent also pays attention to what their consumers want and need by adding campaigns that speak to those needs.  One campaign in particular which had their users responding was their 2014 “Qiang Hongbao” campaign (Red Envelope), this campaign allowed for users to link their bank accounts to a Weixin account and send and receive virtual red envelopes.  Mahoney and Tang say, “Red envelope is a traditional Chinese culture that includes a monetary gift that Chinese people give to their family and friends during holidays” (Mahoney & Tang, 2017).

China seriously has one app that rules their world and I find it fascinating. Ge Wang, Wei Zhang, and Runxi Zeng state, “In China specifically, socializing on WeChat has become an indispensable part of users’ everyday lives, and WeChat is the most important social media application for maintaining users’ online interpersonal relationships” (Wang, Zhang, & Zeng, 2019).  What do you think?  Would you like an app that did all those things this app can do?  This application is part of China’s daily life because it involves all the things that they need to get through their day.  Do you think such an application would be successful here in America?  I’d like to think so, however as I stated before I think that other platforms would find some reason to not want it as it would interrupt our free enterprise.

References

Liao, S. (2018, February 01). How WeChat came to rule China. Retrieved December 07, 2019, from https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/1/16721230/wechat-china-app-mini-programs-messaging-electronic-id-system

Mahoney, L. M., & Tang, T. (2017). Strategic social media: From marketing to social change. Chichester, United Kingdom: Wiley-Blackwell.

Wang, G., Zhang, W., & Zeng, R. (2019). WeChat use intensity and social support: The moderating effect of motivators for wechat use. Computers in Human Behavior, 91, 244-251. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2018.10.010

Cyberactivism,Social Media, & Change

Let’s face it everyone wants to be that person who does something great. If you want to get your target audience motivated you mobilize them by giving them a reason to act socially responsible as well as showing that you support a cause or charity.

According to L. Meghan Mahoney and Tang Tang in their book Strategic Social Media from Marketing to Social change, “Humans want to do the right thing” (Mahoney & Tang, 2019). For instance in October National Breast Cancer Awareness is celebrated by organizations, individuals, and businesses. Social media is one of the most popular places where those who are advocating for a cure will post. Doing something great has been made easier because of the invention and innovation of the internet. People are now able to click on links, search the net for causes and charities to donate to with ease without leaving their homes.

In the case study Breast Cancer Meme in Mahoney & Tang’s book states that, “Various forms of Internet memes circulate on Facebook to help spread awareness” (Mahoney & Tang, 2019). What better way to garner support for social good than to be where there are according to Statista, “2.45 billion monthly active users” (Statista, 2019). In order for cyberactivism to succeed those who want to make sure their message goes viral and encourages behavior change go where the “people” are.

The campaign involved private messages being sent to women where they were asked to, “put a single color as their status update” (Mahoney & Tang, 2019). This color signified the color of the bra the women were wearing along with their name. This action mobilized women and brought awareness to breast cancer. According to The Susan G Komen Foundation began Friday 8th January with 135 fans on their Facebook page. By 5:30 in the evening, they had 135,000. As of today they now have 138,606 fans” (Macleod, 2010). Social media and cyberactivism go hand in hand. If you want to create a buzz about something you believe in the best place to post that would be by using social media.

A few questions to make you think. What do you believe in? Do you think posting to a social media platform the best way to get your message out? What does change look like for you? A few questions to make you think. What do you believe in? Do you think posting to a social media platform the best way to get your message out? What does change look like for you?

References

Macleod, D. (2015, January 09). What color is your bra for breast cancer awareness. Retrieved November 23, 2019, from http://theinspirationroom.com/daily/2010/what-color-is-your-bra-for-breast-cancer-awareness/

Mahoney, L. M., & Tang, T. (2017). Strategic social media: From marketing to social change. Chichester, United Kingdom: Wiley-Blackwell.

Statista. (2019). Facebook users worldwide 2019. Retrieved November 23, 2019, from https://www.statista.com/statistics/264810/number-of-monthly-active-facebook-users-worldwide/

A Matter of Choice in the Digital Age.

As someone who has to wear glasses the options for places to buy them can seem vast. In my view, the idea of having to go into a doctor’s office and get an examine, then have to buy their glasses which can be very expensive can be tiring.  Warby Parker is an online company that started in 2010 when a bunch of college students got together because they were unhappy with the choices for prescription glasses.

The classmates decided to start an online delivery center for sunglasses and prescription glasses which would open up avenues for those who couldn’t afford the high prices. traveling to stores, and the usual need of an appointment in order to see an eye doctor.  The fact that the college students started a business from a seeming need is to be admired. The students saw a need and found a way to fill that need creatively.

One of the great things about this company is the fact that they make it easy in this fast-paced world to get the glasses you need without having to step foot out of your home.  One of the great campaigns is the “Home Try-On Campaign” where customers can order five pairs of glasses, have them sent to them no charge and t hen find the pair they want and return the others at no charge.  This would be something I would love to do because it gives me the chance to find something I like without all the hassle of going into the store and then I don’t have to pay to get them shipped to me or ship them back! What a deal.

The great thing about Warby Parker is that they respond to their customers comments on their social media which makes the customer feel like it’s not just about the money that the company makes but that they actually care about them as a person.  Warby Parker’s use of social media isn’t done to just sell but to actually take the time to get to know their customers.  By allowing their customers to generate content on their social media it gives their products a more personable feel and lessen the dissonance and disconnection that customers might feel in ordering online and not in person.  As a consumer myself I find that if a company engages with me and allows me to put content on their sites it means that they are transparent and trustworthy.

The other fact that I love about Warby Parker’s as a company is that they are socially conscious and will give one pair of glasses to someone in need when a customer buys a pair of glasses.  It was interesting to find out that Warby Parker to date has given out,500,000 pairs of glasses.  A company willing to help others prove that they aren’t just in it to gain money.  As a conscious buyer if I know a company is helping out others, I will tend to buy from that company because I feel good about my purchase being able to help others. A company who’s socially conscious is a company that cares about people.

I will preface this with the fact that I haven’t used Warby Parker’s services. However I have used other competitors such as Zenni.com and the like. For me the information about how Warby Parker does business is most helpful and may influence my next purchasing choice.

I’m curious. What makes you go to a certain company and buy their product or service?

Coming May 22, 2018 Down and Dirty Boxset!

Coming May 22, 2018, in the Down and Dirty boxset! Blurred Lines

Meet Phaedra Sims and Rocco De Angelis. Their attraction to each other has come to a boiling point. The issue is, is that they shouldn’t even be on each other’s radar.

Sgt. De Angelis and his assigned help need to find a way to get the job done without crossing the line. But how easy it would be to blur the lines and take what each of them needs and want to let the healing begin.

Phaedra Sims had taken the job at the prison to block out the memories in her head as she helps to heal others. Memories of a love that died too soon. Sergeant Rocco De Angelis is a man who has proven his dedication to his job over himself. Phaedra can’t deny the chemistry between them. Rocco plans to make sure she doesn’t. Healing the heart and soothing the soul will definitely be blurring the lines.

Available for preorder for just 99¢!
Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07B3X69KL/

Love is Definitely Complicated!

I can’t believe that the first book in my Undeniable series is here!  It’s Complicated featuring Keiko Jarrett and Ashton Locke!  Friends turned lovers! I’m so excited to share with you an excerpt of their love story.  

Blurb:

Ashton Locke has had a thing for Keiko Jarrett since college. So when she proposes adding friends with benefits to the mix, he’s intrigued, but wary. Sure, he’s always wanted her, and is definitely not ready to settle down with anyone, but what happens if one of them crosses the line?

Keiko is ready to take her flirty friendship with Ashton to the next level of hot. But she never bargained for feelings to intrude and cause complications. She laughed at Ashton’s hesitation and promised she’d remain heart-whole.

Some promises are meant to be broken and as Keiko and Ashton’s benefits bleed in all aspects of their lives, Keiko needs to convince Ashton that love is worth the risk.

EXCERPT: 

“Repeat that again?” Ashton was sure he hadn’t heard what Keiko had said to him.

He looked at the dark-haired beauty with the stunning mocha-colored skin, who was also his friend, and wondered if she was daft.

She’d taken him from the group and asked him to go inside to help her with the hors d’oeuvres and, while he was arranging the veggies and fruit onto a tray she’d given him, she’d dropped this bombshell on him. He’d almost let go of the grapes but managed to catch them when he turned to look at her.

“I want us to take our relationship to a different level. I want to be your fuck buddy.”

“Okay, who are you and where have you taken Keiko?”

She giggled softly as she continued to fix the tray with cheese, meat, and crackers as if she hadn’t just told him she wanted them to fuck. Not that the thought of fucking her hadn’t passed through his mind a time or two since knowing her. But this was Keiko, his friend and not some random girl.

“Hear me out, Ashton, before you say no, please?” She stopped messing with the tray and looked into his eyes.

Leaning back against the counter in the cozy kitchen, he waved his hand for her to continue. God, he hoped he wasn’t going to regret letting her continue. He probably should have stopped her and walked away. “Go ahead Kei.”

“Well, I’ve been thinking about this for a while. I’m tired of the games that dating brings. So, I thought what better way to still have the benefits of a relationship and none of the drama than to date my best male friend. That best friend being you. Besides, you want me, you’ve said so yourself.”

She had hit the nail squarely on the head with the comment about him wanting her and having stated it before. He wasn’t about to deny that, but to actually have sex with her and keep their friendship intact? How would they manage that? It didn’t seem to be possible to have sex with her and not have it run into the emotional issues.

“How in the world do you expect us to have sex and remain friends, Kei?” They had a strong friendship. If this turned into anything but lust there would be problems. His parents proved that to him repeatedly. He saw a wicked glint hit her eyes and he was in for it. She put down the cucumber she’d been cutting, wiped her hands, and came around the counter to stand directly in front of him.

She pressed her lush body to his and wrapped her arms around his neck as she looked up at him with her beautiful chocolate-brown-colored doe eyes.

“Easy. I’ll show you. Kiss me, Ash. You and I’ve been doing this dance way too long.”

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Published by: Tule Publishing 
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