Mcknight In Shining Armor

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  • Format: Trade Book
  • Copyright: 2009-09-29
  • Publisher: Bantam
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When did love get so complicated? That's the question Kelsie Connors keeps asking herself. Stung by a bitter divorce, Kelsie's been married to her job as a high-end animal wrangler ever since. So when her disastrous first encounter with advertising executive Alexander McKnight a man so gallant he'll overlook the destruction of his office by an out-of-control chimpanzee blossoms into romance, she finds herself in uncharted waters. She certainly never expected to fall for a man this charming, this flawless, this quickly. For Alec, Kelsie's devotion to her career is the only thing keeping her from saying yes to the best business proposition of all: a new relationship. He'll try every trick in his arsenal to get her to put down the phone, set aside her calendar, and let him care for her and her two children. But with only so many hours in the day, can she set aside enough time to learn to love again?

Author Biography

Bestselling author Tami Hoag’s novels have appeared regularly on national bestseller lists since the publication of her first book in 1988. She lives in Los Angeles.


Chapter One


"Jeffrey Connors, I do not want to hear that kind of language in this house," Kelsie Connors said, admonishing her nine-year-old son while trying to dry the fingernail polish on her right hand as she attempted to butter a slice of toast with the left.

"But, Mom!" Jeffrey whined, peering at his mother over the myraid cereal boxes on the kitchen table. "My pencil broke and I have four math problems to finish and the bus is gonna be here in five minutes!"

Kelsie's toast fell from her plate to the floor, landing facedown. An orange tiger-striped cat darted out from beneath the table and ran off with it. Kelsie dropped her knife and heaved a sigh. Murphy's Law would have to strike full force today of all days, she thought.

An enormous dog with shaggy black and brown hair pushed open the basement door and bounded into the kitchen, his nails clicking on the linoleum floor. He gave two enthusiastic barks, reared up, and plopped his massive paws on the table, toppling the milk carton, which spewed its contents over five cereal boxes and two hand-quilted place mats that belonged in the dining room.

"Damn!" Kelsie bolted out of her chair, grabbed a dishtowel, and began sopping up the mess.

"Damn!" echoed the parrot from its cage in the dining room.

"Mom, you swore!" Jeffrey said, smiling.

"Who let Bronco in the house?" Kelsie asked in a tone of voice that did not invite confession. The towel she had grabbed had stuck to her nail polish, and now the fingernails of her right hand were coated with fuzz.

Jeffrey pointed to his thirteen-year-old sister as she danced into the room, absorbed in singing her latest favorite song along with the radio.

"Elizabeth did!"

"I did not!" the pretty blond girl denied automatically, glaring at her little brother.

"Cease fire!" Kelsie yelled, dragging Bronco by the collar to the back door. She tried to avoid brushing against his body because he shed year round, and she was already dressed for her meeting at Glendenning Advertising in downtown Minneapolis—which promised to be the most important meeting she'd attend since starting her talent agency for animals two years before.

With the dog safely out in the fenced backyard, she turned back to her children. "Now, listen up. I'll be a little late tonight because they're shooting that tissue commercial at three o'clock. The number at the studio is on the bulletin board; don't call unless there's blood. There are cookies in the cookie jar; don't eat them all. Supper is at six. Don't forget, I have a party tonight."

Elizabeth frowned. "I thought you were quitting that job, Mom."

Kelsie crossed her fingers and held up both hands. "As soon as I land the Van Bryant deal, sweetheart. If the people at Glendenning Advertising decide to use Darwin the chimp in the Van Bryant Department Store campaign, the first thing I'll do is turn in my Naughty Nighties home party kit."

When her marriage to Jack Connors disintegrated, Kelsie had found herself in a deep hole. She'd been twenty-nine years old with no solid work experience, two children to raise, and a mini-menagerie to feed. She'd kept a roof over their heads and food in the cupboards by giving lingerie sales parties. Then one day it hit her. Why not let her pets earn their own keep? The idea had mushroomed into a business—Monkey Business—named for Kelsie's first outside client, Darwin the chimp.

She had enjoyed a certain amount of success with the business, but she still was struggling a bit financially. This was her make-it-or-break-it year. With the Van Bryant account under her belt, she would definitely make it. Without the Van Bryant deal, she could end up working as a clerk at the 7- Eleven again.

Excerpted from McKnight in Shining Armor by Tami Hoag
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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