Then Comes Love [NOOK Book]


Back in the day, Jasmine Brown had wanted heartthrob Drake Whitcomb in the worst way. But to him she was his best friend's baby sister and off-limits.

Years later when Jasmine got the chance to work in Drake's veterinarian practice halfway across the country, she jumped on it. She'd finally have Drake's attention! She'd also have a chance to meet the father she'd never known.

Hoping to help Jasmine heal the rift with her family, Drake was ...

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Then Comes Love

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Back in the day, Jasmine Brown had wanted heartthrob Drake Whitcomb in the worst way. But to him she was his best friend's baby sister and off-limits.

Years later when Jasmine got the chance to work in Drake's veterinarian practice halfway across the country, she jumped on it. She'd finally have Drake's attention! She'd also have a chance to meet the father she'd never known.

Hoping to help Jasmine heal the rift with her family, Drake was stunned by the explosive desire he suddenly felt when they worked together. Even though she still had way too much attitude, he found himself irresistibly drawn to the sassy, sexy beauty...

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426805592
  • Publisher: Harlequin Enterprises
  • Publication date: 9/28/2005
  • Series: Harlequin Kimani Romance Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 253,728
  • File size: 159 KB

Meet the Author

     Candice Poarch, a nationally best-selling author, fell in love with writing stories centered around romance and families many years ago. She feels the quest for love is universal and portrays a sense of community and mutual support in her novels.  Married thirty years, Candice is a mother of three children. She is a graduate of Virginia State University and holds a degree in physics. Please visit her website at
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Read an Excerpt

Then Comes Love

By Candice Poarch


Copyright © 2007 Candice Poarch
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780373860333

Performing an ultrasound on a horse might be an indelicate procedure, Dr. Jasmine Brown thought, but after years of vet school she took it in stride. She wore a plastic sleeve covering her completely from her fingertips to her shoulder, and said hand was stuck up the horse's ass, so to speak.

It was a good thing she wasn't squeamish. Of course, by the end of her first year of vet school, all possible squeamishness had been ruthlessly eradicated.

This wasn't just any horse, though. No, indeed.

Maggie Girl was a thoroughbred, the bread and butter of River Oaks Thoroughbred Farm. And horse people loved and took excellent care of their animals. They were patted, groomed and their meals were chosen with precision after years of study based on meticulous scientific research. There was nothing an owner wouldn't do for his horses. From pristine stables that offered better accommodations than many people's homes, to topof-the-line medical care. The room where Jasmine stood held state-of-the-art equipment from one end to the other.

It was clear the woman standing farther back with men on either side of her hadn't been exposed to this particular procedure very often—if ever. Her face had puckered up an hour ago the moment Jasmine began examining the first horse. She'd examinedseveral horses since, checking to see whether the mares were pregnant. Maggie Girl stood obediently, as if she was accustomed to the procedure.

Chuckling, Burt Taylor, the head trainer, held the animal's reins to steady her. "Better you than me."

"Very funny." Jasmine scowled as she repositioned the probe.

Burt's face was a road map of wrinkles that deepened when he laughed, which was often, as the man was endowed with a keen sense of humor.

This time of the year, ultrasounds were done practically every day. Jasmine manipulated the instrument until the gray image of the fetus displayed on the monitor. And then she smiled. Everyone smiled. Oh, but there was something special about hearing that little swish of a heartbeat and the slight movement that appeared with it. A large-animal vet, Jasmine specialized in equestrians.

"She's definitely pregnant," Jasmine said. They studied the monitor as workers went about their daily routine, preparing a colt for his maiden race, filling feed tubs and mucking stalls. On a thoroughbred farm there were always a million chores.

This was horse country, near Middleburg, Virginia, and Colin Mayes and George Avery, River Oaks's owners, stood nearby.

Colin, a drop-dead gorgeous male in his late twenties, had an arm slung around the attractive female's shoulder. She had long auburn hair and her complexion was darker than Colin's nutbrown. "You okay?" he asked.

"I'm fine," she mumbled behind her hand.

He chuckled. "How does it feel?" he asked, squeezing the woman slightly. "Knowing the foal is going to be yours?" He regarded her closely. She finally uncovered her mouth.

"Mine?" Squealing, Noelle Greenwood forgot about the stench and carried both hands to her cheeks before she turned in Colin's arms and kissed him, then looked for confirmation from Mr. Avery. Her grandfather beamed down at her in an indulgent avuncular way.

Jasmine couldn't help it. Her insides burned like acid. She turned away from the scene. It didn't help. Whether she looked or not, it hurt like hell.

"Yes. She's all yours," Mr. Avery concurred.

"Thank you, Colin, Grandpa. I can't believe it! My very own horse." Jasmine faced them in time to see her hug Mr. Avery with such unexpected enthusiasm the older man swayed back before he caught himself. He chuckled out loud and patted her on the back.

Anyone would want him for a grandfather. With his intelligent, aristocratic nature and warm smile even at his age, which had to be mid to late sixties, his form was erect and dashing.

It would be perfectly normal for Jasmine to be envious of Noelle, but she wasn't jealous for the gift of the horse. She'd have her own one day.

Wealthy thoroughbred farms paid enormous vet fees. No, the anger wasn't materially based.

Observing the touching scene between Noelle and Mr. Avery, Jasmine felt a fist squeeze her chest. She closed her eyes briefly in an effort to ease the ache.

In all her life, a man had never loved her. Perhaps that was a bit of an exaggeration, but close. Periodically, memories of her maternal grandfather trotting her around on his shoulders with both of them laughing—emerged. But he'd died a couple of decades ago, so the mental snapshots were sketchy at best.

Jasmine tried to make herself believe she hadn't missed anything. But her heart never, ever listened. Her stomach muscles tightened and anger came swift and sharp, even as she tried to push it away. The horse sidestepped.

"Easy girl," Jasmine said, relaxing her muscles and patting the horse's flank with her free hand. Take it easy, she admonished herself. How would you like some asshole getting tense up your behind? Examination done, Jasmine extracted her arm and disposed of the glove before she washed up. Pulling her sleeve down, she approached Burt.

"The other four horses are ready to be shipped.

You'll want to wait at least a week and let me do another sonogram before you ship the last two," she told him while she input data into her BlackBerry. The purpose of the ultrasound was to make sure each mare still held her fetus before she was shipped back to her owner.

Burt nodded and Jasmine finished inputting data.

"Call the office and make an appointment for next week," she continued while surreptitiously glancing at Mr. Avery.

"Jasmine," said Colin Mayes as he beckoned her over. "I'd like you to meet my fiancée, Noelle Greenwood.You're going to be seeing a lot of us."

Jasmine approached the couple and extended her hand. "A pleasure to meet you, Noelle." Her stomach was still flip-flopping with an excess of emotions at the unexpected introduction.

"We'd like to welcome you to Virginia by giving a party in your honor Saturday. Please come," Noelle said with an easy smile. "And bring a guest with you."

Jasmine hated parties. People stood around feeling out of place or else indulged in idle chitchat. Waste of time as far as she was concerned. Exactly the reason she worked with animals.

She'd had enough of feeling like a fifth wheel with her own family. Damn, no sense in complaining. She was the new kid on the block, so she had to attend. "Thank you," she said as graciously as she could muster.

Noelle had obviously grown up in the lap of luxury, but there was something genuine about her, and Jasmine felt drawn to her effervescent personality. Besides, this woman was Jasmine's half sister.

She still couldn't believe she had a biological sister—a half sister, she reminded herself. This was just too much. Jasmine regarded Noelle closely for similar features. She'd recently discovered George Avery's son, Dr. Mackenzie Avery, had been her mother's sperm donor. Unfortunately, he had died last August. Now she was in Virginia to learn about the family she'd recently discovered. Except they didn't know she was family….

Jasmine wanted to memorize everything to assimilate it all later. Her hair was dark brown in contrast to Noelle's auburn. Jasmine was also a couple of inches taller. They didn't favor at all except maybe the eyes. Noelle had a sweet, pleasant personality. Jasmine certainly didn't. "I'll send you an invitation informing you of the time," Noelle said.

Jasmine nodded but was still left with a dilemma. She didn't have a date. The only person she knew was Drake Whitcomb and he wasn't a person she wanted to get too close to, even though he'd been friendly enough since she arrived. She was grateful for the information he had provided about her family, and he seemed caring but she didn't trust her stepbrother and therefore, by association, didn't trust Drake.

"Jasmine?" Noelle frowned at her. "Is everything okay?"

Forcing a smile, Jasmine nodded curtly. "Could you tell the fetus's sex?" Noelle asked hopefully.

"It was in the wrong position. Maybe next time."

"I really don't care which sex it is as long as it's healthy."

There it was again. Another avid horse lover talking about animals the way humans spoke of their babies. Jasmine heard it every day.

"Don't you worry. Maggie Girl is going to produce a fine foal," Mr. Avery said.

Colin smiled. "Especially since she's sired with Diamond Spirit." said, glancing at his watch. "I have a ton of research to do. Have you had lunch, Jasmine?"

Jasmine glanced at her watch. "No. And I have to get to my next appointment."

"Come up to the house. Leila has lunch ready. She always makes more than enough. Hard working on an empty stomach."

Jasmine's first reaction was to say no, but she stopped herself in time. No sense in cutting off her head to spite her face. She wanted to see the house. She'd also see more of Mr. Avery, her grandfather, and be able to observe her half sister.

Swiftly walking out of the stable, she packed her instruments and stowed them in her SUV before she climbed in. She took a long drink from her bottle of water, then started the motor and followed them to the grand house on the hill.

She'd seen it before—from a distance. Jasmine tried to relax. It was April and flowers had already started to bloom in the yard. An entire garden of azaleas, begonias and God knew what else were bursting with color. And the mountains surrounding them were an explosion of green, even though the temperature still fluctuated considerably from day to night.

She neared the house. It was a picture straight from Architectural Digest, Jasmine thought as she parked and exited the truck.

Noelle was waiting for her at the back door. "Quite a show place," Jasmine said, nodding toward the house.

"I love Grandpa's heated pool best of all," Noelle said. "There's nothing like a nice swim when it's snowing outside and I can't get out to exercise. It's nice having an open invitation to stay here when the spirit moves me."

"You're going to turn into a mermaid," Colin said affectionately, rubbing Noelle's back. He was obviously bowled over by his fiancée.

On the closed-in porch, everyone pulled off their boots. Several pairs were lined up against the wall. After leaving her boots by the door, Jasmine followed them inside.

"Oh, so this is the new doctor," an older woman said, looking up from what she was stirring in a pot. As the aroma hit her nose, Jasmine's mouth watered. "She's as pretty as can be."

Embarrassed, Jasmine stopped in her tracks.


Excerpted from Then Comes Love by Candice Poarch Copyright © 2007 by Candice Poarch. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 31, 2007

    pretty good

    I can't say anything bad about the book. The author kept you interested in the different scenes. O.K. plot, and good characters that brought out what the author was saying.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2007

    Too Many Loose Ends...

    This is the second novel in Mrs. Poarch's 'Looking For My Father' series, and it wasn't nearly as good as the first novel 'His Tempest.' The attraction and romance between the Drake and Jasmine was very sensual and sweet. However, the storyline was too scattered and a little unrealistic. Jasmine and some of the secondary characters in this story had way too many issues that were left unresolved, so the ending sort of leaves you hangin'. I can only hope Mrs. Poarch plans to revisit some of these issues with the third novel in the series so we can have full closure in Jasmine and Drake's tale.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2007

    Interesting Story

    I really enjoyed this book, but the story ended suddenly. I was hoping for a few more pages to tie up some loose ends. Needless to say I was disappointed about that. The book is worth reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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