Just who does this man think he is?
Eli can't resist pretty, passionate Liza Kincaid, even though he's vowed he'd never take another bride. But Liza's tender touch makes him ache with long-forgotten desires, and he quickly decides that their lives won't be complete until he has a wedding ring on her finger. And when his custody of his little girl is threatened, Eli knows he must do anything in his power to make his family whole.
Bold, brash Eli came barging into pretty teacher Liza Kincaid's world, turning it upside down and, at first, making her wish she'd never met the man. But one look in his daughter's sad eyes made Liza realize she would do anything to help the child, even if it also meant spending time with her infuriating father. And although Liza's head tells her he's all wrong, his unexpected kisses begin to feel so right...
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At least she should be thankful for missing the tornado.
Only Eh Liontakis, Liza mused, as she watched him wrap up a lecture to the World Health Congress, had sufficient charisma to convince the board of visitors at Breeland to allow her absence during the orientation for the summer program. That afternoon, while she sat in the cool confines of the ballroom of the Marriott Marquis, five hundred girls, ages 10 to 18, were arriving at Breeland Academy in the small town of Terrance, Georgia. The temperature there, she knew, topped 100 degrees. The humidity made it feel like 110. For years, the staff at Breeland had referred to the harrowing business of getting the students settled and oriented as the tornado And here she was, the assistant administrator of the summer program, in the plush surroundings of a hotel ballroom, listening to the current superstar of medical research charm an international audience of health professionals.
He was expounding on a point, explaining in riveting terms the strides he was making in the lab. She studied him through narrowed eyes and pushed aside a sliver of trepidation. Charisma didn't begin to describe the man's impact. Every eye in the room studied him with avid attention. Not, she admitted, that she could blame them. He was positively mesmerizing. Despite the pictures she'd seen of him, he still looked taller than she'd expected. Too tall. His hairshoulder length and kept in a neat queue athis napewas too black. His shoulders were too broad, his face too angularly attractive. The suit he wore emphasized a lean torso and slim hips that tapered to long legs. Despite his size, however, he moved with a grace that her dancer's eye admired. With a sweep of a tanned, elegant hand, or the intense look in his leonine eyes, he had hypnotized his audience. Was it any wonder the press had taken to calling him The King of the Jungle?
Over the past year, Eli had rocketed to relative stardom when his research on cell-life and chemical alteration began to attract global notice. If preliminary reports proved true, Liontakis' research would likely lead to the first major breakthrough in cancer treatment and prevention since the advent of radiation.
With his good looks, his personable speaking style, and his incredible facility of framing extremely complex scientific ideas in everyday language, his name had become a household word. Interest in science, chemistry, and pharmaceutical research was peaking in his wake. His style and energy had breathed new life into a languishing field, and his specialty, biochemical research, had started the hottest academic trend since Freud's ego and id. One well-known critic had said, "Liontakis has done for chemistry what Elvis did for the back beat."
Almost overnight, Eli and test tubes full of potential miracles had become icons. When his picture appeared on the cover of a magazine, it was a guaranteed runaway sell-out. Women everywhere seemed to adore his slight accent, his cultured manners, and the edge of barbarism that said all the attention had tamed him merely for a moment. Every talk show, news magazine, and network in America was clamoring for a piece of him. A Nobel prize nomination, and eventual award, seemed a foregone conclusion.
Liza had persuaded Breeland to invite him months before the media firestorm had begun. At the time, she'd believed that his relative youthhe was just 34and his energetic lecture style would appeal to the students. She'd once heard him speak at a national teacher's symposium. Impressed with his accessibility and creative approach to a normally dry subject, Liza had felt he'd make an excellent addition to the summer teaching staff.
The students, she knew, would benefit from exposure to a scientist so versatile and talented. But, and this was surprising, he accepted the invitation after his meteoric rise to fame had him gracing the cover of Time magazine.
For personal reasons he'd discussed only with Anna, he'd agreed to spend the summer at Breeland and delayed responding to offers from several major research facilities. Anna had told Liza that Liontakis' ten-year-old daughter had played a major role in the choice he'd made. He'd also insisted that Liza fly to New York to accompany him and the girl on their trip to Breeland.
As she watched him now, Liza decided it was an unqualified blessing that he'd chosen not to arrive at Breeland on orientation day. The last thing the staff or students needed during the tornado was another element of chaos. And Eli Liontakis, she'd learned, spread chaos like Jack Frost spread ice.
As he wrapped up his speech, Liza mentally chided herself to get a grip. She had a job to do. Eli Liontakis was Breeland's star attraction for this year's summer program. And Liza cared too much about the program, its students, and Breeland to let her personal feelings stand in the way of making him feel welcome.
The audience began to applaud, and Liza slipped out the back door for their scheduled rendezvous. She pressed a hand to her stomach as a coil of tension began to tighten. Soon, she reminded herself, he'd be at Breeland. He'd be on her territory. Then she'd feel in control again.
She waited in the impressive atrium while he made his way through a crowd of admirers. He stopped occasionally to extend a hand in greeting, or answer a proffered question, but he made his way steadily, inexorably toward her. When he finally reached her, he didn't even stop walking. His long fingers linked beneath her elbow and he steered her toward the door. "Ms. Kincaid?"
"Yes." She resisted the urge to wrench her elbow free of his imprisoning grip.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Teacher Lisa Kincaid invited biochemist Dr. Eli Liontakis to speak at the small Breeland Girls Academy in Terrance, Georgia. She did so because she liked his energetic speaking style and felt the students would enjoy his talk. However, that was before Eli¿s research into cell-life and chemical alteration took the world by storm. A Nobel Prize looks like a sure shot, yet Eli¿s still coming as he accepted the invitation to speak at the five hundred-student academy after he graced the cover of Time. Eli worries about his daughter Grace who survived the car accident that killed her mother. He knows he was a negligent father, hardly spending any time with his ten-year old child. Now she lives with him. He hopes that Lisa¿s dance class will help Grace recover from all her recent traumas. When Lisa and Eli meet, an electro-chemical reaction of major magnitude occurs. As they fall in love, she struggles with demons from her past and he battles in-laws over custody of Grace. Thus, a lasting relationship seems not likely to happen. YOU MADE ME LOVE YOU is an enjoyable contemporary romance that will thrill fans of the sub-genre. The story line is crisp, loaded with emotion that rarely eases up, and filled with love. Lisa is a wonderful female lead and though Eli seems perfect as an intelligent huggable hunk, his flaws come through loud and clear via Grace. The support cast, especially Grace, provides the extra impetus needed to make readers want more novels like this angst-laden tale. Harriet Klausner