Second Chance with the Billionaire (Harlequin Desire Series #2392)

Second Chance with the Billionaire (Harlequin Desire Series #2392)

by Janice Maynard

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Overview

Second Chance with the Billionaire (Harlequin Desire Series #2392) by Janice Maynard

It's a steamy reunion between a single mom and the billionaire who got away, from USA TODAY bestselling author Janice Maynard 

Former ski champion Conor Kavanagh enjoys a challenge. And he's encountered no challenge more arousing than Ellie Porter. Once, she broke his heart. Now that she's back in town? He can't seem to stay away… 

But Ellie has changed. Widowed, with a baby, she has responsibilities—and secrets—weighing her down. Still, his desire for her is undeniable. Surely, he can have her without giving up his heart—or his daredevil ways? He's willing to risk it all to find out…

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781460386682
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication date: 08/01/2015
Series: Kavanaghs of Silver Glen Series
Sold by: HARLEQUIN
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 192
Sales rank: 75,713
File size: 426 KB

About the Author

In 2002 Janice Maynard left a career as an elementary teacher to pursue writing full-time.  Her first love is creating sexy, character-driven, contemporary romance.  She has written for Kensington and NAL, and is very happy to be part of the Harlequin family--a lifelong dream.  Janice and her husband live in the shadow of the Great Smoky Mountains.  They love to hike and  travel. Visit her at www.JaniceMaynard.com.

Read an Excerpt

Conor Kavanagh had been antsy ever since he heard Ellie Porter was back in town. In spite of the many celebrities and moguls who vacationed here, Silver Glen, North Carolina, wasn't all that big a place. Chances were he'd bump into her sooner or later.

The notion gave him goose bumps. But not the good kind. Ellie Porter was part of his past. A fantasy. A regret. A deep hurt he'd buried beneath layers of indifference. He didn't need the ghost of girlfriends past to tell him he'd messed up.

Hell, he'd made more mistakes in his almost-thirty years than a lot of people made in a lifetime. But he liked to think he'd learned from them. Besides, Ellie wasn't an old girlfriend. At least not in reality. He'd kissed her once, but that was it.

In the privacy of his imagination, however, he'd done a lot more. Ellie had featured in his adolescent fantasies on a nightly basis. He'd been head over heels, hormone driven, wildly in lust with her. Everything about her reduced him to shivering need.

The smell of her hair. The dimple in her cheek when she smiled. The way her breasts filled out a sweater. Even the tiny gap between her two front teeth had charmed him. He would have given his family's entire fortune for the chance to spend one night with her. To lose himself in her soft, beautiful body and show her how much he cared.

But Ellie Porter and her twin brother, Kirby, had been his two best friends in the whole wide world. So Conor had kept his daydreams to himself, and never once had he let on to Kirby that he thought of Ellie as far more than a pal, even after he'd finally kissed his buddy's sister.

She'd been popular in high school. A long list of guys had panted after her. Probably even entertained the same fantasies that kept Conor awake and hard at night. Each time she went out with a new date, Conor suffered. He wanted to be the one to hold doors for her and put an arm around her in the movie theater and walk her home on warm, scented summer nights.

But though he and Ellie had shared an undefinable something that went beyond mere friendship, Ellie had disapproved of Conor's risk-taking. Her rejection of an integral part of his personality had ended anything romantic almost before it began.

He'd often wondered what might have happened if the Porters had stayed in Silver Glen. Would Conor ever have persuaded Ellie to give him another chance? It was a question with no answer. And now they had both moved on. Ellie was married. Conor was still the guy who pitted himself against danger to prove he was alive.

Loud laughter at the table behind him startled him out of his reverie. The Silver Dollar Saloon was a rowdy place on the weekends. His brother Dylan owned the upscale honky-tonk. It wasn't unusual to see the second-born Kavanagh behind the bar dispensing drinks and advice and jokes along with the pretzels and booze.

Dylan was an extrovert and a people person. He'd settled down a lot since marrying Mia and adopting little Cora. You might even call him a family man. But he still loved the Silver Dollar.

Conor couldn't blame him. It was the kind of place where everybody knew your name. Locals and tourists alike were drawn to its atmosphere of camaraderie and fun. The music was good, the service above par and the burgers legendary.

Dylan made his way down to the end of the bar and stood in front of Conor, raising an eyebrow at the half-empty bottle of beer Conor had been nursing for the better part of an hour. "I'm losing money on you," he said. "You're not eating, you're not drinking. If I didn't know better, I'd think you were in love."

Conor finished off his beer and grimaced. "God forbid. Just because you're all gaga over marital bliss doesn't mean the rest of us have to follow suit. I'm perfectly happy as a single man. I like my freedom."

"You don't know what you're missing."

Dylan's smug assurance was designed to get a rise out of Conor, but it didn't work. Because deep down, Conor knew it was the truth. He'd seen his older brothers, one by one, succumb to Cupid's mischief, and the reality of the situation was, they were all happier than Conor had ever seen them.

Liam and Zoe, Dylan and Mia, Aidan and Emma. Even Gavin, who was a hermit and a curmudgeon at times, had been tripped up by the gorgeous and bubbly Cass.

So, yeah…it was hard to overlook the self-satisfied arrogance of his siblings, who were getting laid on a nightly basis. They practically oozed testosterone and caveman triumph.

But what really got to Conor was the look in their eyes when they were with their wives. When they thought no one was watching. Those moments when the alpha males softened and Conor could see the wealth of love that bonded each man with his spouse. That kind of connection was rare and wonderful and Conor would be lying if he said he wasn't the tiniest bit envious.

It wasn't in the cards for Conor, though. The one female who had ever inspired such a depth of feeling in him had dealt him a rejection that was very personal. Ellie had disapproved of his love for courting danger. In spite of his attempt to be honest with her and to explain why skiing was so important to him, he'd lost her, anyway.

Ellie had wanted Conor to change who he was. She'd begged him to be more careful. And in the end, she had stood by his hospital bed with sorrow in her eyes and told him they didn't have a future, because he loved the rush of adrenaline more than he cared about her.

Even then he had seen the truth in her words. As a child, he'd suffered from a respiratory ailment that kept him confined indoors. Once he finally outgrew the problem, he'd been determined to prove himself. He was driven to be the fastest and best at everything he did.

That blind determination to be number one had cost him.

Life was full of regrets. He should know. A man had to move forward or be forever cemented in the past. Personally and professionally, he'd had plenty of opportunities to learn that lesson the hard way.

Dylan handed him a menu. "Buy something. Flirt with someone. You're giving the place a bad vibe."

With a reluctant grin, Conor shook his head. "God forbid that you should let your brother hang out undisturbed. Bring me a Coke and a cheeseburger, damn it."

Dylan nodded, his attention drawn to the two men arguing heatedly at table six. "That's more like it."

When Dylan strode away to break up the potentially violent situation, Conor watched the interaction with admiration. Somehow his brother managed to steer both men to the front door and outside without causing a fuss. The Silver Dollar didn't tolerate brawls.

While Conor waited for his food, he flipped through messages on his cell phone and frowned, not really seeing any of them. What would happen if he simply showed up at Ellie's front door and said hello? Would she look the same? Would he like her as much?

They hadn't seen each other in thirteen years, or was it fourteen by now? She wouldn't be sixteen anymore. So why did he still see her that way? It made no sense. All he was doing was torturing himself with one of those weird good-old-days memories that never held up under scrutiny.

Like the octogenarian who goes back to his childhood home only to find a strip mall where he used to play, Conor was keeping alive something that wasn't even real. Memories were not bad things. As long as you realized that the only truth was the moment you were living right now.

His accident years ago had cost him a skiing career. And had erased any possibility of having Ellie Porter in his life. Those two facts were irrefutable.

And what about Kirby? Conor and Kirby had been closer than brothers. They had studied together and played sports together and dreamed dreams together. Both of them had had big plans for the future. But their bond had been broken by something as mundane as Kirby's parents taking him to another hemisphere.

Could a friendship like that be resurrected? Only time would tell…but Conor hoped so.

He finished his meal and yawned despite the fact that it was not even ten o'clock yet. He'd been up at dawn. Had worked his ass off all day. He was the boss. He owned the Silver Mountain Ski Resort. But idle living had never suited him. Maeve Kavanagh had raised seven sons, mostly unassisted, and in spite of the Kavanagh fortune and the family's influence and reach in the town of Silver Glen, she had drilled into her boys the value of hard work.

According to Conor's mother, the size of a man's bank balance was no excuse for laziness. Her boys heeded the message. Liam ran the Silver Beeches Lodge with his mother. Dylan owned and managed the Silver Dollar Saloon. Aidan was some kind of banking genius up in New York. Gavin's baby was the Silver Eye, his cyber security operation.

On Conor's twenty-third birthday, he had officially taken over the ski resort. The move seemed obvious since he had spent a large portion of his childhood and adolescence gliding down those slopes. At one time he had dreamed of medals and podiums and national anthems being played in his honor.

But life had a way of smacking you in the face occasionally. His plans had changed.

Conor had a good life. And a great family. He was a lucky man.

So why did he still think about Ellie Porter?

The two blondes at table six were giving him the eye. They were both cute and looked athletic. No doubt, exactly his type. But tonight he couldn't summon up enough interest to play their game, even with a threesome in the realm of possibility. What in the hell was wrong with him?

"Conor?" He felt a hand on his shoulder.

Summoning a smile, he turned on his stool, prepared to make an excuse…to say he was leaving. But dark blue eyes stopped him in his tracks. "Ellie?"

She nodded, her expression guarded. "Yes. It's me. I need to talk to you."

Ellie found herself at a distinct disadvantage when Conor stood up. She had always been barely five foot five, and Conor Kavanagh was a long, tall drink of water, several inches over six feet. The pale gold highlights in his dark blond hair were the result of many hours spent outdoors. Women paid a lot of money to get that look in a salon.

He wore his hair shorter than he had as a kid. But it was still far too gorgeous for a guy. Not fair at all. The only thing that saved his face from being classically handsome was the silvery scar that ran up the side of his chin and along his jawline. When he was twelve, he'd fallen off the ski lift and cut his face open on a rock.

She and Kirby had been in the seat behind him and had watched in horror as the snow below turned red with Conor's blood. But Conor had jumped up and waved at them, his typical devil-may-care attitude in full view. Even now, the memory made her queasy.

Conor had definitely grown into his looks.

His rangy frame was much the same as she remembered, though with more muscles, a few more pounds and a posture that said he was at ease in his own skin. The extra weight suited him. Back in high school he'd been on the thin side.

His passion for sports, skiing in particular, and his highspeed metabolism had made it difficult for him to take in enough calories. For Ellie, who had always battled her weight, his problem was one she would have gladly handled.

He stared at her without smiling, the expression in his gray eyes inscrutable. "I heard you and Kirby were back in town."

She nodded, feeling vaguely guilty. Should she have called Conor instead of simply showing up? "Grandpa isn't doing well. Kirby and I came home to look after him until my parents retire in nine months. They've opened their last clinic in Bolivia, so once it's up and running to their satisfaction, they'll move back to Silver Glen."

"I see."

Conor's reticence bothered her. At one time, she and Kirby and Conor had been thick as thieves, their friendship unbreakable. But then her parents had done the unthinkable. They'd become medical missionaries and had moved their family to the jungles of South America to dispense health care to the people there.

"We missed you," she said quietly. Even before the move, she and Conor had parted ways.

Conor shrugged. "Yeah. But it's a hell of a long way from Silver Glen to Bolivia. It's not surprising that we lost touch."

She nodded. For several months emails had winged back and forth between Kirby and Conor. The occasional snail-mail letter. But in the end, she and Kirby had been too far removed from their old life to maintain that thread. And Ellie had been too hurt by Conor's pigheadedness to write.

"We were furious, you know," she said. "In the beginning. We begged my parents to let us stay here with Grandpa and enjoy our senior year."

"I remember."

"But they insisted that the four of us were a family. And that we needed to stick together."

Conor shifted his weight, looking beyond her. "Let's grab a table," he said. "Have you had dinner?"

"Yes." She followed him and took the chair he held out for her.

"Then how about a piece of lemon pie? Dylan swears it's the best in the state."

"That sounds great." She rarely ate desserts, but tonight she needed something to occupy her hands and some activity to fill the awkward silences. In her head, she had imagined this meeting going far differently.

Conor's lack of enthusiasm for their reunion threw her. When they had placed their order, he leaned his chair back on two legs and eyed her unsmiling. "You've turned into a beautiful woman, Ellie. And that's saying something, because back in high school you were the prettiest thing I'd ever seen."

She gaped, totally taken off guard. Heat flooded her cheeks. "You're being kind."

"Not kind…merely truthful," he said, his expression guarded. "I was a guy, not a eunuch. Being your friend wasn't always easy."

Still that undercurrent of something.

"Are you angry with me?" she asked, not at all sure what was going on.

"No. Not now."

"But once upon a time?"

"Yeah. I guess I thought both you and Kirby could have argued harder to stay."

She bit her lip. "You don't know the half of it," she said softly, regret giving her an inward twinge. "We were typical sullen teenagers when we didn't get our own way. We yelled and pleaded and sulked. But Mom and Dad insisted we were a family and that we would be leaving the nest soon enough…that we needed to stick together. The thing is, they were right. Kirby and I had the most amazing experiences that year."

"What about your studies?"

"They homeschooled us. And we worked in the clinic. I wish you could have been there, Conor. The jungle is an incredible place. Dangerous, of course, but so beautiful."

"I'm glad things worked out." When he glanced at his watch, she sensed he was impatient.

Sadness filled her chest. At one time this man had known all her secrets. Had been at her side for most of the important moments of her life. "How about a dance?" she said impulsively. "For old times' sake."

His body language was one big negative, but he nodded. "If you want to."

The small dance floor was crowded with other couples. Conor held her close and moved them across the scarred hardwood with ease. Gone was the slightly gawky boy she had known. In his place was a powerful, confident man. Not that the young Conor had ever lacked confidence, but still…this Conor was different.

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Second Chance with the Billionaire (Harlequin Desire Series #2392) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
SusanFrank More than 1 year ago
Very good reunion story. After a devastating accident that ended Conor's dreams of competition he set his eyes on different challenges. One of them is being part of the family business and making his ski resort one of the best. When he hears that his childhood friends, Ellie and Kirby Porter are back in town he's happy, but also wary. His teenage crush on Ellie had ended badly when she wanted him to choose between his risky activities and her, so he's surprised when she comes to him for help. Ellie and her brother have come back to Silver Glen to take care of their sick grandfather. Ellie is also at her wit's end trying to figure out how to help her brother, who was badly injured in the same climbing accident that killed her husband. She thinks that Conor, having had to overcome his own disappointments, is just the person to help his old friend. She doesn't count on her old feelings for him coming back too. Conor agrees to spend time with Kirby, and soon it is as if they had never been apart. I loved their first meeting, as Conor faced the elephant in the room and commented on Kirby's artificial foot. After the initial shock, Kirby reacted with the humor that Conor remembered from their youth. I loved seeing Kirby come out of the depression he was in and begin to live again. Spending time with Kirby also meant spending time with Ellie. The attraction they felt as teens is much stronger now, but there are still obstacles blocking their path. Between her husband's death, having her baby and taking care of Kirby and her grandfather, Ellie has avoided dealing with any of the emotions that came with them. Avoiding her attraction to Conor is out of the question, and a fling with him may be just what she needs. Conor can't stay away from Ellie, but he also doesn't want to take advantage of her while she is vulnerable. He can see that she's living on the edge and he doesn't want to hurt her. I loved how much Conor obviously cared for Ellie. He tries so hard to do the right thing, but she is determined to have her way. The heat between them is intense and opens the door to more than just sex. I loved seeing them grow closer, and especially the way that Conor's protectiveness came out when Ellie was hurt. But he is keeping a big secret from her that may end anything before it really has a chance to get going. And her reluctance to talk about her late husband has him wondering if he's just a stand in. At the same time, Ellie's own past has her believing that Conor wouldn't want her if he knew the truth. Another devastating blow to Ellie and Kirby brings everything out into the open, where both Conor and Ellie have to deal with it. It is here where Conor's feelings for Ellie really shine through and bring them the happiness they both deserve. As a secondary character, I really loved Kirby. It would be great to see him get his own story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
REAL READER. Gonna be nice and just say I have gotten many free books better than this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love all Janice Maynards books but this is my new favorite by far! Captivating from the get go with Ellies return visit requesting Conors help with her brother! I could have used alot more with their dynamite chemistry & the adoration Conor had for Emory! Thanks Janice! Traci south FL
TheSassyBookster More than 1 year ago
3.5 Stars! Conor Kavanagh is at the point where he's longing for something more but not sure exactly what he wants, especially when he sees how settled his siblings are with their spouses but even though he does not think marriage is for him, he can't stop thinking about the one that got away - Ellie Porter. Conor was interested in Ellie back when they were teenagers but the danger he faced everyday on the slopes was too much for her and she ended things between them even before they began. Now Ellie and her twin, Conor's best friend Kirby are back in Silver Glen. Could this be the chance Conor's been waiting for? Ellie Porter and her brother Kirby are back in Sliver Glen to care for their grandfather and give Kirby a chance to heal from the accident that cost him a limb. Conor might just be what Kirby needs to get him out of the funk he's been in since the accident. Ellie lost her husband in the same accident, only to find out that she was pregnant after his death and has not had a chance to deal with her feelings but maybe a brief fling with Conor is just what she needs. SECOND CHANCE WITH THE BILLIONAIRE is very emotional and heartwarming, dealing with loss and grief, how the characters deal with these emotions and the ultimate healing power of love. Ms. Maynard's characters are everyday people who have attained some success and have all gone through tragedy but still held onto the values they were brought up with. Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Judy_F More than 1 year ago
Second Chance With The Billionaire by Janice Maynard is another wonderful story of those sexy Kavanaghs of Silver Glenn. Ellie Porter has come back to Silver Glen to raise her infant son, help her brother and watch over her beloved Grandfather. To say she has a lot on her plate is underselling the issue. Ellie turns to her former crush Conor Kavanagh for helping her brother realize he can get his life back on track. Conor Kavanagh enjoys running the family ski resort. When his Olympic ski career was cut short by injuries he had to overcome the disappointment. He is floored when is high school crush is back in town and needs his help with her brother. Conor agrees to spend time with Kirby. Spending time with Ellie’s brother has Conor spending lots of time with Ellie. When Ellie is injured Conor offers his home for her to recuperate. Living in the same house has old feelings roaring to the forefront. But Ellie is still leery of Conor’s need for adventure. Will her fears stop her from giving the relationship a chance? The Kavanaghs of Silver Glen is a sensational series. You can’t help to fall in love with the family and their mates. Conor and Ellie have a sizzling chemistry. It was a special treat to revisit other family members. Looking forward to more books in this series.
onlyminordetails More than 1 year ago
Upon finishing, my initial reaction: Talk about heavy on the feels! WHOA. My Thoughts (full review): There are often some feels in the Harlequin Desire books, whether they're small or medium. But this one? Oh my goodness, did it throw the feels at me! I mean, almost right from the start I just knew it would continue to be heavy, and I wasn't wrong. While it was full of feels, it was also full of heart, love, and sweet moments. Ellie and her brother, Kirby, are back in town to help care for their grandpa temporarily. Their family had left when they were younger to go to South America. Now that they were back, Ellie asks to Conor if he could do a favor for her. Kirby had an accident that caused him to lose his foot. This same accident killed Ellie's husband--right before she found out she was pregnant with his child. (Can you see what I mean about being heavy on the feels??) Ellie and Conor spend time together, and the desire they felt before is still there. Unfortunately, there are new things blocking their path--with everything Ellie has been through in recent times, she hasn't come to terms with it fully. And Conor hasn't completely changed--he still wants to push the limits. Will their feelings help them find a way? Second Chance with the Billionaire is a feels heavy, sweet love story. You don't anticipate it coming in, but it hits you in the heart and pulls you into their lives even more. You care for every character, not just Ellie and Conor. Janice Maynard really brings it with the latest book in the Kavanaghs of Silver Glen series! My Rating: Very Good
BooksAndSpoons More than 1 year ago
This second chance story took me by surprise. There's more to it, than than I expected. Connor is enthralled with the idea of his childhood friends being back in town, even though Ellie once broke his heart. But things are not as expected. Life has been rough for the twins, Ellie had lost her husband, is a single mother, and nearly lost her twin Kirby, as well. Kirby's left leg is partly amputated, and now their grandfather has fallen ill, needing help. So much agony, sorrow, and pain in the twins' life for the past 18 months. Connor is doing what he can to help, and as it seems to help Kirby, to be around Connor again, Ellie seems to be falling in pieces. Connor is an honorable, gentle, loving man. His own disappointments in life have guided to be in the place in life where he is, in a solid place, where he is content. Ellie understandably has it tough, so much drama in her life in the past couple years. She goes boldly after what she wants, and that is intimacy with Connor, and help with her brother. I wasn't sure if I should have rooted for her resolute to go after Conner, again and again. At times her behavior seemed audacious, but maybe it was just a misplaced call for help. She also reacts rather strongly with things happening, she seems to be a bit of a drama queen. But there is a reason for her emotional behavior, if she could only open up about it, and share her pain. Like said, there's much more to the story than I expected. I enjoyed it, it had some original twists in the story. It also had lots of angst and pain, bereavement and sorrow. All the dark emotions nearly over powered the joy of the baby, the treasure of reunited childhood friends, and the passion, wonder and glee of the new relationship between Connor and Ellie ~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
Pure_Jonel More than 1 year ago
Maynard simultaneously broke my heart and gave me hope. The tragedies that they lived through, yet the happiness that they found was breathtaking. The plot was complex and took me on some unexpected turns. Maynard developed this world in intricate detail, without overshadowing the story itself in a uniquely picturesque manner. I love how the characters were still everyday individuals, even if they do lead lives that many of us couldn’t even fathom. I really enjoyed getting to know them. The unique second chance that these characters were given was really enjoyable. Maynard never fails to capture me heart and soul with her well written tales. This one was no exception. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this work in exchange for an honest review.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
Ms. Maynard's story of star crossed young love that ended before it could begin is a story that I found to be quite likeable. Conor is handsome, sensitive and besotted. Trying to do the right thing for the love of his life isn't easy but he wants her to be happy. Ellie is wary, heartbroken and lonely. Life not turning out how she expected, dealing with many shattering twists. Now that they have found each other once again will the past tear them apart. Second Chance with the Billionaire was given to me in exchange for an honest review. Janice Maynard did a wonderful job in creating characters that touched a special place within the heart of the reader. Although I liked the story. My Rating: 3.5