Finally, the cool autumn nights have arrived in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and I’m ready for the chunky sweaters and spiced apple cider. But I’m most excited to share a sneak peek at my September 27th release, Confessions of a Glamour Girl.
This is the third and final book in my Her Confessions Series. I can’t tell yet if there will be a spin-off or a subsequent series built on this world, but I won’t close the door to possibilities in the future. For now, this will be goodbye to Jen, Maggie, and Lily.
If you’re in the mood for an Age Gap, Office Romance, then you should definitely snatch a copy of Confessions of a Glamour Girl. Lily’s story will give you all the warm, fuzzy feelings. Check out the first chapter below…
I might as well be wearing a flashing neon sign over my head that says New Girl. After suppressing the urge to retreat, I take a deep breath and ignore the curious glances. Lifting my chin high, I cross the lobby, savoring the click of my kitten heels on the marble tile.
Staring is rude, but that’s exactly what they’re doing. Gawking. Not that I can blame them. The cherry print swing dress with the red petticoat always turns heads. Probably not the best choice for my first day working in a corporate position, but I don’t care. This is me, and I refuse to dim my shine to conform to ridiculous contemporary fashion standards. I readjust the purse strap over my shoulder, cursing the soft cashmere of the bolo sweater.
A glance at the clock on the wall calms my nerves. I have fifteen minutes until I have to be on the forty-fourth floor. I skipped my morning coffee to ensure I would be on time, but the lack of caffeine has undermined my confidence.
This is my first major step toward financial independence. After five years in college and six years working at a boutique downtown, I am still dependent on my father. He has paid for everything to get me to this point. My college degree. My wardrobe. My hobbies. Everything. Hell, he owns the Brooklyn Heights brownstone where I live with my three roommates. We pay rent, but still, I have my dignity. I’m tired of being daddy’s little girl, living on his charity.
Which is why I applied to Valentina’s. If I want to make my mark on the fashion industry, I need to understand how it works. College didn’t prepare me for that, but this will. Valentina’s is the largest high-end department store in the country, and I fully intend to learn everything I can.
With a yearly salary and room to advance, this job will give me the advantage I need to break free from my father’s controlling grip. He might be the most wealthy, powerful man in New York City, but he’s far from generous. He never invests in anything that won’t guarantee him a return. Me included. He’ll be pissed when he finds out my long-term goals don’t include him.
I’m relieved to see there’s a café in the lobby, and I step in line behind a tall man in a dark gray suit. While I wait, I admire the expensive fabric and the custom cut of the jacket. As a designer, I take in every detail, noting the polished brown leather oxfords and expertly tailored suit. Whoever this guy is, he knows exactly what to wear to make an impression.
He steps up to the counter and orders his drink. “Doppio. Two sugars.” The deep, confident cadence of his voice leaves me breathless. He steps to the side, glancing to the left and giving me the perfect view of his profile.
Holy shit. Silver fox alert. I’m not normally attracted to older men—unless they’re Cary Grant or Gregory Peck—but dark hair threaded with silver at the temples is my kryptonite. Something inside me whimpers.
But it actually escapes my lips and he turns toward me. Oh. My. God. I look away and fidget with my purse.
“What can I get started for you, hon?” The petite barista raises a brow in question. She’s kind enough to not say anything about my gaffe.
“Cappuccino with caramel drizzle, please.”
She rings up my order and takes my money. I step off to the side to wait for my coffee, joining the sinful silver fox, who looks like he just stepped out of a vintage noir film set.
His attention remains on the newspaper in his hand when I stand beside him. Who is he? Does he work here? The thought of working alongside this man on a daily basis has my body thrumming. How the hell would I get any work done? I’d be distracted all the time.
The barista sets his drink on the counter and calls out his order. I manage to tamp down my disappointment when he takes the cup and walks away.
“Cappuccino with caramel drizzle.” She sets mine down on the counter. I grab it, making sure the lid is tight before I head for the elevator. I step into the full car right before the doors slide closed. When I reach for the button for the forty-fourth floor, it’s already lit.
It stops a few times on the way up, and by the time we reach the thirty-second floor, there is only one other person in the car with me.
The silver fox. He’s still reading his paper. I hold my breath and close my eyes.
“Please don’t be on the same floor,” I mutter.
Oh, shit. He heard me. I clear my throat and turn with a smile. “Forty-four.”
He looks up from the paper and I’m pinned in place by his ice blue eyes. “Hmm. You must be the new hire.” He folds the paper beneath his arm and takes a sip of his coffee.
“Yes, sir.” I’m so screwed.
“What’s your name?”
His brow knits momentarily, accentuating the firm set of his jaw, but his expression quickly relaxes. “Ah, yes. Miss Astor.” He holds out his hand. “Mr. Roberts.”
I shake his hand. His firm grip conveys strength and confidence, and it takes all my effort to mirror it.
The elevator comes to a stop on the forty-fourth floor, and I sway at the sudden halt in motion. His hand grips my elbow, steadying me. Before I can speak, the doors slide open.
“If you will come with me, Miss Astor.” He gestures for me to exit first.
I do, but the moment I’m out of the cloistered space, I step to the side and allow him to lead me down the hallway. We make our way through the maze of cubicles and hallways lined with offices. I keep my attention focused on his broad shoulders and curse myself for not looking up the staff I would be working with before I arrived.
“Good morning, Mrs. Foster.” Mr. Roberts nods to the woman sitting behind a desk outside a row of large offices facing the southern tip of Manhattan.
“Good morning, Mr. Roberts.”
He pushes open the door and steps into the office beyond the secretary’s desk. “Come in, Miss Astor.”
I nearly stumble over my heels but manage to compose myself quickly. Mrs. Foster casts me an encouraging smile before I follow him into his office. I glance at the door in passing and gasp when I see his name and the title beneath it. Vice President. Mr. Roberts closes the door behind me.
Oh. Sweet. Hell. I’ve been lusting after the vice president of the company. I take a fortifying sip of my cappuccino and hiss when it burns my lip.
“Please, sit down.” He gestures to the leather chair beside his desk.
Maintaining some semblance of decorum, I gently sit on the edge of the chair, careful not to mush the crinoline skirts, and cross my ankles.
He rounds the desk and unbuttons his jacket before sitting. “Well now, Miss Astor. I have a few questions before I let you get settled in.”
“Yes, sir. Of course.” I clear my throat and pray my voice sounds stronger than my confidence.
He pulls a file from the corner of his desk and opens it. “It says here you have a degree in fashion design from NYU.” He sets the file aside and meets my gaze with an intensity that leaves me simmering.
“Tell me, Miss Astor.” He steeples his fingers together and leans back in his chair. “Why Valentina’s?”
“Valentina’s is the oldest, most successful department store chain in the country. I want to learn all I can from the leader in the industry and be instrumental in reviving vintage fashion.”
“Interesting.” The corner of his mouth lifts, betraying his amusement. “Why work for us? With your family connections, I’m sure you could cast your influence with a much larger shadow.”
“I’m sorry?” I feign ignorance, but inside I’m cursing myself for not changing my name. Of course, they would run a background check before they hired me. My father once again asserts his influence without effort.
“Surely you don’t need to work when your father is one of the wealthiest men in the country.”
“In all transparency, sir, I may be the daughter of Monroe Astor, but our connection is in name alone.” I straighten my shoulders and keep my jaw from trembling.
“The tabloids once painted you as a daddy’s girl searching for her prince charming.”
“The tabloids print lies and fabrications to suit their own ends.” I pin him with a confident stare. “I am not a daddy’s girl any more than I am a media darling. I applied to Valentina’s in an effort to step out from under my father’s shadow and cultivate a name for myself. Now, do you have any other questions, or may I be permitted to do the job you have hired me to do?”
“Of course, Miss Astor. Please, forgive me. I did not mean to pry into a sensitive subject.” Mr. Roberts rises from his seat. “I look forward to having you on the team.”
“Thank you, sir. I’m excited to be here.”
He reaches the door before I can and opens it. “Mrs. Foster, will you please show Miss Astor to her desk?”
“Of course, sir.”
Mr. Roberts turns to me. “If you need anything, Miss Astor,” he smiles, and my heart shatters at the charm he carries with such ease, “please do not hesitate to reach out. My door is always open.”
Mrs. Foster leads me down the hallway, but the tension between me and Mr. Roberts remains like a nagging itch in the back of my mind. This will either be the best experience of my life or a waking nightmare.
One thing is for sure. I can’t indulge in vivid fantasies about my boss. Mr. Roberts might be the modern equivalent of Cary Grant with Paul Newman’s eyes, but I can’t let that distract me. His assertion about my father was accurate. I could have just batted my eyelashes and my father would have hung the moon for me. But that’s not what I want.
I’ll do it myself. I’ll show every last one of them how tough I really am. I’m more than a rich man’s daughter with a pretty face and expensive taste.
One day I’ll have my own vintage line with staying power like Gucci and Versace. But it won’t be my father’s name they see—it’ll be mine.
Thanks for checking out a sneak peek at my new release! I’m excited to share Lily and Jackson’s story with the world. xoxo
Releases September 27th…Check it out on release day for a special sale!
Kirsten S. Blacketer