Being appointed to the Board of his father's empire means nothing to Carter Chase since his fiancé, Avery, left him. Carter intends to use every resource-and compromise every moral-to find her and get her back.
Carter's brother, Michael, has a problem of his own. His relationship with his wife, Kimberly, has been strained ever since she exposed a shocking secret from his mother's past. Now Kimberly's own past could destroy her marriage-and the entire Chase legacy.
Meanwhile, oldest daughter, Leigh Chase, is being wooed by a hot Hollywood star whose fast lifestyle places her in danger. And with youngest daughter, Haley, creating scandal after scandal, the family may be in hot water even their billions can't buy them out of. . .
"Entertaining. . .the pacing is fast and the drama [is] unrelenting." --Publishers Weekly
"More backstabbing than a soap opera." --Romantic Times
|Product dimensions:||4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.10(d)|
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NO MORE GOODA VIEW PARK NOVEL
By Angela Winters
DAFINA BOOKSCopyright © 2008 Angela Winters
All right reserved.
Chapter One"What is this, Daddy?" Six-year-old Daniel Chase was standing over something in the hallway of his uncle's penthouse condo in downtown L.A.
"What is what?" Thirty-year-old Michael Chase waited for Evan, Daniel's twin brother, to get inside before closing the door behind him.
"It's a bra!" Evan rushed to his brother, picking up the lacy pink lingerie for his father to see, his little brown hand waving it in the air.
Michael sighed, realizing it might be a mistake to bring his boys over to his brother's place. He should have known something this like would happen. He'd been warned last month when he walked in on Carter and a Brazilian model having very loud sex hanging halfway off the dining room table.
"Put that down," Michael ordered. "Just drop it."
"These are panties!" Evan was reaching for the matching bottoms just a few feet away. They were lying on top of a silk cocktail dress.
"Don't touch that." Michael took his son's arm.
"Mommy has these." Evan struggled to get away from his father. "Is Mommy here?"
"All mommies have these, stupid." Daniel rolled his eyes.
"Uncle Carter needs to do laundry." Michael cautiously led his boys down the hallway, praying that he wouldn't have to explain the birds and bees to them today. That really wasn't on the schedule.
"Where is he?" Daniel asked impatiently as soon as they were at the steps to the living room of the three-thousand-square-foot, three-bedroom penthouse condo.
"He's probably working in his office," Michael answered. "Working hard."
He led his boys to the living room sofa and reached for the remote control. "You boys stay here, do you understand?"
Evan was already looking antsy, eager to get out of his church clothes. They were both used to being able to run wild whenever they were here.
Michael found a suitable television station on the large plasma screen on the wall. "Just watch this and don't move."
"Why not?" Evan asked.
"Look at me," Michael ordered, waiting until both of them did so. Keeping stern eye contact, he said, "Because I said so. Do you understand?"
Daniel nodded, but Evan just shrugged, always the difficult one.
As Michael made his way to the master bedroom, passing scattered pieces of clothing along the way, he wasn't looking forward to the reason he was sent over here by their mother. He had to remind Carter to show up tonight at Chase Mansion, their parents' fifteen-thousand-square-foot estate in View Park, to celebrate in his honor. Carter hadn't been answering his phone for three days now, so Janet sent Michael to track him down.
This wasn't the first time in the last six months Carter had "disappeared." Ever since his fiancée, Avery Jackson, left him, Carter would leave for long periods of time. Avery not only left Carter, but left L.A. and didn't want to be found. He'd gone ballistic when he realized she had no intention of coming back.
He had become a Jekyll and Hyde, moving between two states of being. One was an obsessed psycho desperate to find Avery, who he swore on the Bible was the only love of his life, using the considerable means at his disposal whether legal or not. The other was a reckless drunk who didn't care about Avery, swore he was better off without her, and wanted to prove it by nailing every woman he could get his hands on.
And the bra and panties in the hallway suggested Carter had been doing just that. This was the Carter that their parents were concerned about, the one who could get the family in real trouble.
And trouble for this family meant more than it did for others. The Chase family was American black royalty. They were not part of the entertainment or sports worlds, which high society looked down on. Those people didn't belong to, nor were they invited into, the world the Chase family ran in. No, the Chases were a cut above that. Filthy rich was where the Chase family stood—or stood out depending on how you looked at it.
The family was led by Steven Chase, a man from humble beginnings who built his cosmetics company, Chase Beauty, into a multibillion-dollar corporation. He had become an American titan and used the family's billions to influence business and politics all the way to Capitol Hill. His money was invested in several industries, including real estate in some of the most exclusive areas in the western United States.
Meanwhile, his wife, Janet, brought social standing to the family as the daughter of high-society East Coast lawyers with a strong heritage and several generations of wealth and community leadership. From their gated palace in the mostly black, affluent suburb of View Park, she single-handedly took over L.A.'s society scene, black and white, and created an empire envied by even the best East Coast families. Together, no one could rival what they had created.
And although it was Steven's money, influence, and power that put out the fires his children started, it was Janet who was the architect of the Chase family image and publicity. With the recent family scandals still lingering, she couldn't allow Carter to throw the family into another one. Especially not one of a sexual nature, which of course is what Carter was known for. He not only slept with lots of women, but he also treated them badly when he was through. Word was starting to get around, and that could be dangerous.
Michael stood in the doorway to Carter's bedroom and observed the mess in front of him. He could only smile because Carter was such a neat freak, almost to the point of obsessive, and here he was, living like a frat boy complete with a naked woman sprawled facedown on the bed.
Carter Chase's light brown eyes flew open as he heard a loud bang. Had something just happened or was it the awful pounding in his head again?
"Wake up!" Michael yelled, closing the door behind him. "It's afternoon, boy."
Carter struggled to sit up on his bed with his hand pressing against his forehead. He felt like shit. "What the fuck are you doing here, man?"
His younger brother, dressed in a sharp gray suit, sat down on the bed looking at him with a smirk on his face. At least Carter thought it was a smirk. Things were a little blurry.
"You know I brought my boys here," Michael said. "You got her thong in the hallway. They don't need to see that."
"Don't come by uninvited, then." Carter cleared his throat.
Michael nodded to the naked, chocolate body next to Carter. "She is?"
Carter turned his head slowly, because that was all he could do to keep it from exploding. Nice ass, was all he could think of. "I don't know."
"That's smart." Michael was envious of his brother's wanton freedom. With his having been married seven years himself, things were a bit more complicated. "This is what Mom is talking about."
"Can you not mention her right now?" Carter asked. He leaned back against the headboard. "What day is it?"
"She's afraid you're going to get some strange girl pregnant."
"Like you did?" Carter asked, reminding Michael of how he had introduced his current wife to the family seven years ago.
"Touché." Michael made a fist and socked Carter in the arm.
"Stop." Carter pointed to the half-empty condom box on the dresser. "I'm not stupid."
"But you don't know her name."
"Her name doesn't matter," Carter said. "She's getting out of here as soon as she wakes up."
The woman made a sound as if she'd heard Carter, but didn't move. It wouldn't matter to him if she sat up and started a scene. She was just some hot chick who had offered to buy him a drink at Level Three Nightclub. They moved on to one of the club's infamous beds with the curtains closed. Less than twenty minutes later, he took her home. In these matters, he preferred to go to the woman's place, so he could leave as soon as he was done, but this one had a kid and a mother at home and ... well, a very nice ass.
"Mom sent you here?" Carter asked.
"No one has been able to reach you for days. I thought you'd gone off to chase after Avery again."
Carter felt his temperature boil at the mention of her name. "She's not in Tampa."
"Last month it was Atlanta."
"It was never Atlanta!" Carter swung around on the bed, feeling the room move around him. "I told you she was never in Atlanta. Her stupid sister used to go to school there, so I—"
"Hey!" Michael stood up. "Don't yell at me. I don't give a shit where Avery is. And last week you said you didn't either."
"I didn't," Carter lied. "I don't. She can be in hell for all I care."
"Who do you think you're talking to?" Michael asked. "I've seen you break down and all ... this. Like it's not all about her."
"So you're my therapist now?"
Michael turned away from his brother, not willing to get caught up in this argument again. There was no talking to him when it came to his precious Avery. Instead he walked over to the full-length mirror and checked himself out, something he never tired of doing. He smiled at his fine, dark features. Everyone said he looked like Sidney Poitier at his most handsome, but Michael knew he looked much better than that.
"What about Sunday?" Michael asked.
Carter didn't feel like facing the family. He was tired of having to put on that perfect front that was such a lie. His life was a mess and he had embraced that. He didn't appreciate his mother making him act as if everything was okay.
After finding out Carter paid a woman to have sex with her fiancé, Alex, in order to win her away from him, Avery left him. Despite everything he had done—the millions it had cost him to hide his mistake and all he promised never to do again—she handed him his engagement ring and walked away. Carter was devastated, but never considered giving up. He had come to love Avery, the middle-class girl next door, more than he knew he was capable of loving a woman. She was different from him, but she quickly became the only thing that mattered in his life. So there was no doubt in his mind he would win her back. It would take some time and a lot of work, but he would get her back. After all, he was Carter Chase and what woman could resist him?
Then Avery disappeared. Actually, she ran away with her family's help, and Carter hadn't been able to find her. It seemed impossible, considering he had the power of the Chase name and all its money and connections. If only her father hadn't been chief of police of View Park and her brother a detective, he would have been able to impose himself on them more. They were keeping an eye on everything he did in trying to find Avery, waiting for the chance to catch him breaking the law. He'd even gotten a call from the FBI after a bug was found in Nikki Jackson's car. They couldn't trace it to him, but they all knew he'd had it done. It was driving him crazy.
He'd begun trying to find her immediately, his only distractions being the law firm he ran and the commitment he'd made to his father to look after Chase Beauty while his parents were away for his mother's rehab treatment. He had everyone she knew traced and bugged. He put a flag on Avery's Social Security number and credit cards, but her family found out and he was blocked out after only one week. He tried to get the police involved, but Avery's father convinced them that she wasn't missing and of course they sided with him. They were getting in contact with Avery some way that satisfied Missing Persons enough. Even Carter's deep connections as one of the hottest up-and-coming lawyers in L.A. couldn't help him.
After a few months, he gave up and decided he didn't care. It was all a lie, but he knew it would drive him crazy if he didn't at least try to convince himself he didn't want her anymore. He called off all but one of the ten private investigators he had on retainer but still remained focused on the Jackson family. The Jacksons knew he was following them and they were able to elude him at every step. Still, whenever they left L.A., Carter had someone on them, searching for Avery. The last trip had been to Tampa, Florida, followed by a rental car driven to St. Petersburg, which was where Avery's mother, Nikki, disappeared before showing up in Charlotte, where she caught a plane back home to L.A. Carter had sent his P.I. to Charlotte two days ago.
"You're coming to the celebration whether you want to or not. It's for you."
"My birthday was last month," Carter said. "It's not for your birthday, asshole. You better come, you bastard!"
"Stop yelling." Carter covered his ears.
"Stop being such a—"
"She might be in Charlotte," Carter said.
Michael sighed, feeling pity for the brother he had always looked up to. Carter had never been this sick over a woman. "You don't have time for another trip."
"I'm not going until my P.I. comes back with proof."
"What about the board?" Michael asked.
Carter made a grumbling sound. "That's what the party is about, right?"
Michael couldn't believe this. "You're going to be made a member of the board of directors Wednesday, Carter. That's a big deal."
"I know," Carter said. "I'll be there."
"Do you have any idea how important this is to Dad?"
"Of course I do. It's important to me too."
The idea that he would be made a member of Chase Beauty's board was still odd to Carter, considering that when he made the choice to start his own law firm instead of going to work for Daddy, Steven had all but promised him he'd never be on the board. It had been a major bone of contention between him and his father and their relationship, which had always been on edge. It had been better some times than others, but never recovered from that decision to do his own thing years ago.
"Nothing is important to you anymore," Michael said, concealing his envy.
Michael was always a little on edge when Carter and their father started getting close again, even though he knew it never lasted. Still, this one-millionth make-up was lasting longer than usual and Michael felt left out. He was the favorite son and that position meant more than anything in the world to him. Chase Beauty was going to be his, and Carter's so-called invasion didn't make him happy. Michael had always been fine with Carter as the company's legal firm on retainer. He enjoyed working with him almost as much as he enjoyed working with his father. But this was more, much more. He loved his brother without question, but couldn't ignore that he felt uneasy about his formally joining the company.
"You better straighten up," Michael ordered. "Avery is gone. Stop being such a pussy and get over it."
Carter stood up from the bed and faced his brother head-on. Both a little over six feet, they met eye to eye. Even though his head was spinning, Carter stayed steady. "Back off."
Michael didn't blink. "You lost her, but you keep this up, you'll lose everything."
Carter smiled, because at that moment, he believed Michael, but he really didn't care.
"I need you to tell me what you mean when you say ... complete renovation." Marcus Abbott, interior designer to the fabulously wealthy, made a quotation marks gesture around his last two words. "I mean, this pool is only two years old. It has all the state of the art technology, so—"
"It's ugly," Kimberly Chase answered with a pout. "That's what I mean."
The pool wasn't the only thing Kimberly hated about the new house. Actually, the house was beautiful. Nestled in the ultralux Hollywood Hills, the gated, Tuscan-inspired villa was six thousand square feet with four bedrooms, sixteen-foot-high ceilings, and opulent furnishings purchased by a world-famous designer from every end of the globe. It had everything Kimberly wanted: oversized French doors, large windows for ample sunlight, precision-cut inlaid imported marble, custom wood floors, an enormous gourmet kitchen, a dramatic rotunda entryway with an Italian Renaissance–styled garden and a four-car garage.
There was one problem; it was a consolation prize.
It was a rushed choice made so because of a plan gone horribly wrong. Under any other circumstance, it might have been her dream home and it wasn't as if she hadn't tried to make it so. They had been living in the house for four months now and Kimberly was miserable. She believed if she could change everything, it might make her happy. She was starting with the pool, expecting to spend much of the upcoming summer out back.
"This whole area looks like it's from the eighties." Kimberly's Jimmy Choo heels clacked against the stone-paved ground surrounding the house's backyard pool as she walked the length of it. "Plus, it's ... it's a square."
Marcus nodded with an upturned nose. "I can't imagine what the designer was thinking. This beautiful house and then this pool? Must have been designed by a straight man."
Excerpted from NO MORE GOOD by Angela Winters Copyright © 2008 by Angela Winters. Excerpted by permission of DAFINA BOOKS. 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.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
i have been searching for another series or even just a novel like this. i read all 5 books in 10 days, staying up to 5am just to see what will become. You have to read this series you want regret it.
i love ur books bt i relle want to kno is when the 4th book going to come out?? i relle rele want to kno pleae i hope ot comes out soon
Angela Winters is back with her third installment of the View Park series. No More Good continues with Carter causing much havoc with the disappearance of his fiance Avery Jackson. He will do anything and everything in his power to find her and get her back, because Carter always gets what he wants. On the other hand, Carter's younger brother, Michael is having marital problems with his wife Kimberly. Every since she revealed the shocking secret of Janet's past there nuptials has been on the rocks. Now with the latest dilemma you would not believe from Kimberly's past has come back to haunt her, will there marriage come to an end for good? On the other side of the world, Avery is putting her life back in order after abruptly leaving Carter. When she receives a phone call regarding her father, Charlie Jackson the chief of police. She is forced to return home to View Park, and Carter discovers the secrets she has been carrying for the past 6 months. Leigh the oldest of the Chase clan is smitten with a Hollywood Star. Will his philandering ways cause her more harm than good. No More Good will knock your socks off it is so so good. It has more twist and turns than you can imagine. The glitz, the glamor of a prime time sitcom in the making. No More Good should be made for television, along with View Park and Never Enough. Mrs. Winters has really outdone herself with this series. Tangerine, 'Reader's Paradise Book Club'
The View Park Series is a MUST READ!!!!!!!!!!! No More Good will satisfy you beyond your wildest dreams and still want you craving more of the Chase and Jackson Families!!!!!!!! Oh my God! The View Park Series has been bumped up three million levels. The Drama still continues with Carter and Avery, Michael and Kimberly. There are twist and turns all through out the book. You think you know what is going to happen but you totally wrong. Carter still loves Avery but the after a while he demeanor changes, it is shocking what he says to her. I was near tears because I am a HUGE Carter Chase Fan! And it hit Avery REALLY HARD and you wonder why? But as you know in View Park and Never Enough, Carter ALWAYS get what he wants. The new drama that is No More Good really challenges the whole Chase family but really Carter and Michael Chase. Now Michael and Kimberly OMG!!! I would have never guessed in a million years that things would go down the way that did in No More Good. Then the bomb drops is worst the Atomic Bomb. The Chase family will never be the same. You think the Chase's have secrets, ha! What kimberly reveals will but the Chase's secrets to shame!!!!!!!! Mrs. Winters is the best! She has continued to keep me interested and excited about The Chase and the Jackson families! I can't wait for the next novel to come out. Great book Ms. Winters!!!!!