Simply Sensual (Simply Series #3) [NOOK Book]

Overview


Easy money. That's why P.I. Ben Callahan agrees to take the job of watching over spoiled heiress Grace Montgomery. But he soon discovers she has a reckless streak a mile wide. She's determined to experience everything she's been missing…including a chance to explore her sensual side. And she wants to do that exploring with Ben! He's not complaining—it's just too bad what they've got going won't last after Grace discovers Ben's on the family payroll….

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Simply Sensual (Simply Series #3)

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Overview


Easy money. That's why P.I. Ben Callahan agrees to take the job of watching over spoiled heiress Grace Montgomery. But he soon discovers she has a reckless streak a mile wide. She's determined to experience everything she's been missing…including a chance to explore her sensual side. And she wants to do that exploring with Ben! He's not complaining—it's just too bad what they've got going won't last after Grace discovers Ben's on the family payroll….

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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Highly recommended

Ben Callahan readily accepted the offer from Emma Montgomery. As a private investigator, he is more accustomed to clients who tried to weasel their way around expenses and final pay, rather than Emma's generous offer. He not only needs to cover his own bills, but also the cost of the independent living community where he has placed his mother. Emma's job is also intriguing. Emma believes her granddaughter is "in the process of finding herself and she needs a keeper."

The first moment Ben sees the picture of Emma's granddaughter, he's hooked. Just looking at Grace Montgomery's picture is enough to rev up his libido. So Ben travels to New York City, taking the apartment across the hall from Grace. When he sees Grace in person, his reaction is equally instant and intensive.

The sight of Ben in her hall sends Grace's adrenaline pumping. She has escaped to New York to experience life and discover her self-identity. A treat like Ben is just one of the perks of living away from home, even if she mostly watches from a distance. Ben adds spark and zing simply with his presence. Grace has had enough of men who wine and dine her for her connections and family money. She believes Ben to be different. He seems to let her know up front just who he is and what he wants. Little does Grace suspect Ben's connection to her grandmother.

Carly Phillips presents a highly seductive novel in Simply Sensual. Her heroine lends the novel a marvelous sparkle with her spirit and spunk. Phillips also lends comic relief with Emma Montgomery, who is charming, refreshing, and addictive. I would love to see her matchmaking skills reoccur in another of Phillips' delightful romances! Highly recommended.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781460302569
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 9/17/2012
  • Series: Simply Series , #3
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 111,695
  • File size: 353 KB

Meet the Author


New York Times bestselling author Carly Phillips tossed away her legal briefs and a career as an attorney to become a stay at home mom. Within the year, she turned her love of reading into an obsession with writing. Over 25 published novels later, Carly writes sexy contemporary romances, striking a balance between entertainment and emotion, and giving her readers the compelling story they have come to expect and enjoy.

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Read an Excerpt


BEN CALLAHAN FROWNED at the bone china cup on the sterling serving tray in front of him. Unable to fit one of his large fingers through the handle, he tried instead to hold the delicate cup with his whole hand. He'd have chucked the idea of attempting to grasp the cup, if not for his elderly hostess. Emma Montgomery had declared it was teatime, and from what Ben had seen, he wouldn't be getting any information out of her until he'd shared in her daily ritual.

He'd never understand the wealthy, nor did he care to try. He'd had a good deal of experience with the breed, none of it leaving a positive impression. His mother had scrubbed floors for a living and he'd seen firsthand how poorly the help was treated. He'd whisked his mother away from menial labor and verbal abuse as soon as he was old enough to support them both.

It was ironic, really. Most of the clients he'd accumulated as a private investigator had money to burn. Ben didn't mind taking their cash. It paid not only his bills, but the extra money covered the cost of the independent living community where he'd placed his mother. He considered it payback for her years of service.

The elderly woman seated across from him was a potential client. She'd been referred to him by an acquaintance in her social set, one he remembered from the time he'd worked for her last year. So far Emma Montgomery, his hostess, had been refreshing, both charming and persistent at the same time.

While other clients tried to whittle away at his expenses and final take, despite their ability to afford his reasonable fee, Emma Montgomery had paid his airfare and expenses from New York City to Hampshire, Massachusetts, to discuss her reasons for wanting to hire him. As further enticement, she'd named a hefty sum he'd never seen before on a single case, and promised him free rein with expenses, no questions asked. All before she'd explained why she needed his services.

Ben was not only intrigued, but inclined to accept. The money she'd promised would enable him to have his mother moved from independent living to assisted care. With her eyesight rapidly deteriorating, she couldn't live alone and this case might make the upgraded care possible. If it meant putting up with idiosyncrasies like teatime, he'd force himself to endure.

He met his hostess's gaze. Piercing brown eyes regarded him from over the rim of her cup. I'm waiting, she seemed to be saying. There was nothing he could do but raise the cup and take a sip.

The minute the hot liquid passed his lips, she said, "My granddaughter needs a sitter. Do you have any interest in the job?"

He swallowed fast, burning his tongue and nearly losing his precarious hold on the fine china. No way he'd heard her correctly. She was offering all that good money for him to play baby-sitter? He shook his head. "Excuse me?"

"Perhaps I didn't phrase that quite right. I think maybe keeper is the correct word." She tapped the side of her head, without messing the perfect bun in her gray hair. "Yes, that's right. My granddaughter is in the process of finding herself and she needs a keeper."

He placed the cup onto the saucer before he could do serious damage. "I think you've been misinformed, Mrs. Montgomery." Good money or not, Ben drew the line at baby-sitting. "Call me Emma." Her smile grew wider.

"Emma. I'm a private investigator. I don't baby-sit wayward children. Just how old is your granddaughter anyway?"

Emma reached onto the table beside the couch, holding a photo in her hand. She turned the picture toward him.

The woman staring back at him was no child. Honey-blond hair, warm brown eyes and a face as delicate as the china he'd recently held stared back at him. A rush of desire hit Ben hard and a shot of adrenaline jump-started his heart.

"She's almost thirty and quite a beauty, isn't she?" Emma asked, pride lilting her voice.

He met the older woman's gaze and shifted uncomfortably in his chair. "She's...something all right." A golden princess.

In his profession Ben was used to observing people and photographs. He was used to forming opinions and going with gut instinct. He was rarely mistaken in his impressions and never blindsided by a pretty face. And he'd always been able to remain detached. Until now.

This woman was beautiful enough to affect his senses and sensual enough to rev up his libido. Her eyes reflected a wealth of emotion and hidden secrets—secrets he yearned to uncover.

The assignment he'd been about to throw away had suddenly become one he couldn't resist and a distinct sense of unease slithered through him.

"Grace moved to New York City a few years ago," Emma said. "She's always lived off the trust her parents set up for her as a child. No steady job, no steady man." She said the last with enforced meaning before she appraised Ben from his work boots to his unkempt hair.

He shook his head as if he could rid himself of her penetrating stare. "And what's going on with Grace that's prompted you to contact me now?"

"She's stopped withdrawing money from her trust and decided it's time to live on her own."

"I'd think that was an admirable move," Ben said, having more respect for the new Grace than the one who had lived off her family money for years.

"Well, of course it is. It's how I raised her, after all—To be her own person. It worked, to an extent. She got out of Hampshire and away from her controlling father, Edgar, who is my son. We call him the judge." She laughed but the sound contained no joy. "He has no idea what family means. Though I admit, with my grandson, Logan's, recent marriage and new baby, he's learning. But Grace isn't around to see it."

Sensing she'd gotten off track, Ben tried to steer her back to what she wanted from him. "So you want Grace back home?"

Emma shook her head. "Not if she's safe and happy in New York. That's all I care about, you see. But I can't get information out of her because she's clammed up on me." The older woman zipped her fingers across her lips. "All she'll say is that she's fine and I shouldn't worry." Emma snorted, telling Ben what she thought of her granddaughter's silence. "How can I not worry, the way she travels with a camera around her neck, paying more attention to her photographs than her surroundings?"

"She's an adult," Ben felt compelled to remind Emma.

"Women like her are attacked every day in New York City. She swears she's taken a self-defense class, as if that's enough to soothe me. I'm certain she's holding out. Ever since my brush with death, she thinks she's protecting me. She doesn't realize it's more stressful on the heart, being kept in the dark."

Ben nodded in understanding. His own father had died of a heart attack when Ben had been eight. He remembered him as a good man with a heart of gold. Too bad that heart had also been weak and he'd died driving home from his job as a department store manager, leaving no insurance and little money in the bank. His mother had been forced to extreme measures to make ends meet, and she'd turned to the only experience she had—housekeeping, only this time she worked in other people's homes.

"Make no mistake, Mr. Callahan. I'm glad Grace is finally ready to tackle the world on her own." Emma's voice brought him back to the present. "It'll give her a chance to sow those wild oats her father made her suppress, but at the same time, that kind of sudden freedom frightens me. Even nearing thirty Grace has been sheltered too long. And I know her. Now that she's made a stand, her pride won't let her call on me or her brother if she runs into trouble. I need to know she's okay." Emma placed a frail hand on his arm.

"Call me Ben," he said, wondering if Emma was right—if Grace had a penchant for getting into trouble, and if so, what kind.

No way he could deny Emma the peace of mind she sought. Her obvious love for her granddaughter, along with his financial need, sealed his agreement.

She smiled. "I've taken a few liberties under the assumption you'd take this case."

Ben was used to presumptuous clients, but he could only imagine what this woman had decided for him. "What liberties would those be, Mrs...." He caught the quick shake of her head and corrected the formality. "What liberties, Emma?"

"Grace lives in Murray Hill, in a one-bedroom off Third Avenue. After a long talk with the landlord, I managed to secure you the apartment across the hall. It seems his brother lives there and he's out of the country on business for the next month." Her white smile widened.

"Wouldn't it be nice of his good friend Ben Callahan to apartment-sit for him?" She reached for something on the sofa table behind her and dangled a set of keys in front of his eyes.

Ben shook his head. "How convenient." He thought he'd been prepared for anything. He'd been wrong. "I'm sure you realize I already have a place to live, Emma."

She rolled her eyes as if he were slow. "Of course you do." Without warning, the older woman grabbed for his hand again, and her eyes met his in a silent plea, one he had a hard time ignoring. His gut clenched as he silently acknowledged he was in trouble.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 86 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 86 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2010

    Absolutely awful.

    The author races to the bedroom without any definition of any type of a plot. If you are looking for a book that is just sex scene after sex scene then this is what you are looking for. This book was so terrible that I will never purchase anything by this author again. I hope that this saves someone some time and money, both of which, I cannot get back.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2006

    Can't put this book down!

    WOW!!! What a great book. A perfect summer read. Fun characters and a terrific, sexy story, lots of passion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2004

    A fun and sexy read!

    Didn't want to put it down! Characters were believable and not untouchable. A lot of fun to read either at the beach, rainy day or during a winter storm.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Simply speaking, a delightful contemporary romance

    Wealthy senior citizen Emma Montgomery paid the airfare and expenses from New York to Hampshire, Massachusetts to offer the job of ¿keeper¿ to private investigator Ben Callahan. The pay is excellent and the job seems easy. However, Ben has doubts about ¿sitting¿ for an adult. Still the fee would allow him to provide assisted care to his mother, whose eyesight is beginning to fail. Further rationalizing that Emma would hire a less scrupulous detective, Ben reluctantly agrees to keep an eye on Emma¿s beautiful granddaughter Grace as the latter seeks to find herself in New York. <P> From just a picture of Grace, Ben¿s libido explodes. When he meets the ¿Golden Princess¿, he realizes that he is more worried about protecting her from himself than from some thug. What he failed to count on is that a finally free Grace amazingly decides she wants to be Ben¿s woman and recklessly goes about insuring that happens. <P> SIMPLY SENSUAL is a fun to read contemporary romance. Ben and Grace make a sexy duo, while the upper class Emma provides humor as she performs matchmaking duties between the sleuth and her beloved granddaughter. Simply speaking, Carly Phillips makes reading a delight. <P>Harriet Klausner

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