WALK OF SHAME
a Love Unexpectedly novel
Releasing April 18th, 2017
Sparks fly between a misunderstood New York socialite and a cynical divorce lawyer in this lively standalone rom-com from the USA Today bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Love Story.
Pampered heiress Georgianna Watkins has a party-girl image to maintain, but all the shopping and clubbing is starting to feel a little bit hollow—and a whole lot lonely. Though Georgie would never admit it, the highlights of her week are the mornings when she comes home at the same time as her uptight, workaholic neighbor is leaving to hit the gym and put in a long day at the office. Teasing him is the most fun Georgie’s had in years—and the fuel for all her naughtiest daydreams.
Celebrity divorce attorney Andrew Mulroney doesn’t have much time for women, especially spoiled tabloid princesses who spend more time on Page Six than at an actual job. Although Georgie’s drop-dead gorgeous, she’s also everything Andrew resents: the type of girl who inherited her penthouse instead of earning it. But after Andrew caps one of their predawn sparring sessions with a surprise kiss—a kiss that’s caught on camera—all of Manhattan is gossiping about whether they’re a real couple. And nobody’s more surprised than Andrew to find that the answer just might be yes.
And who is he, you ask?
Andrew Mulroney, Esquire.
I know this because we moved into the building on the exact same day, and right before we got into a horrendous fight over whose movers should have access to the building loading dock first, he handed me his business card.
The thick white card stock declared that he had a fancy law degree to go along with the fancy suit he was wearing on a Saturday.
Andrew handed it over with such superiority, I actually wished for a half second that I had a business card of my own that would somehow be better than his. Like, lined with gold or something. No, platinum. With a diamond in the corner. It would be too heavy for him to hold, and he’d drop it, thus having to kneel at my feet to pick it up.
But then I realized it was just as well that I didn’t have a business card.
Because it would say . . . what? Georgie Watkins, professional party girl?
Anyway, I digress. Despite the high temps of that swampy July morning, the encounter had been the start of an epic cold war.
Me, the socialite in apartment 86A against the uptight esquire in apartment 79B.
I’m not entirely sure I’m winning the war, but I’ll never tell him that.
I let my gaze drift over Andrew, even though his appearance rarely holds any surprises. The man’s a lesson in sameness, like some sort of anal-retentive version of Groundhog Day.
There’s always the black mug with some healthy gunk inside held in his right hand, Tom Ford briefcase and Armani garment bag in his left, containing what I know to be a perfectly tailored three-piece suit.
Andrew’s coppery hair is perfectly styled, although I’d swear that there’s some natural curl in there threatening to disrupt his perfect order. I imagine that annoys him, so it therefore makes me happy.
Let’s see, what else about my nemesis?
He’s got a hard, unfriendly jawline that’s perfectly shaven.
Dark brown eyes, cold and flat. Black gym bag over one shoulder.
I suppose you could say he changes up his attire, because he does alternate between black and gray gym shirts. But considering that they seem to be the exact same fit, both colors molding perfectly to his impressively sculpted upper body, we’re not giving him any points for variety there.
Same goes for the lower half. The black shorts worn in summer have given way to sleek black sweatpants now that October’s upon us, but they’re both black and Nike, so we’ll give him no credit for changing it up there either.
The shoes, though . . .
I do a double take.
Well, well, well . . .
Instead of the usual black gym shoes, the man’s shoes are red. I don’t know how I missed it before.
I drag my eyes back up his body with a grin, and he gives just the slightest roll of his eyes to indicate that he’s noticed my slow perusal and isn’t fazed in the least.
“You went shopping, Dorothy!” I say happily.
He stares at me. “I don’t shop.”
Of course not. Far too frivolous.
“No, that makes sense,” I say, pointing at his feet. “Glinda would have given these to you.”
Andrew looks down at his Rolex watch. “I’ve got to go. Have a good day, Mr. Ramirez.”
“You too, Mr. Mulroney,” Ramon says with a deferential nod. “Enjoy your workout.”
“Yes, do,” I say, turning and watching as Andrew moves toward the front door of our building. “What’s on the schedule today? Treadmill, or just skipping down the Yellow Brick Road?”
Andrew Mulroney, Esquire, doesn’t respond. He doesn’t even turn before pushing through the revolving doors and stepping out into the still-dark autumn morning.
Now come on. Tell me that wasn’t at least a little bit fun, despite the ungodly hour.
Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.
A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.