Griff: I learned early on that the easiest way to avoid a broken heart is to always be the first out the door. Caring about anyone or anything is asking to be disappointed, which is why I avoid relationships and chase freelance gigs - ghost writing restaurant reviews and penning articles about the efficacy of cheesy pick up lines - instead of chasing my dreams. Besides, dreams don't come true for people like me. And no one, not even the sexy-as-hell bartender at the club can convince me otherwise. Because I'm never risking my heart again. Sam: As a bartender I've watched a million pick-up artists work their magic, but none as talented as Griffin Marian. He's a flirt, a good time. Hooking up with him was supposed to be just a fling. I wasn't supposed to care abut his fractured past or his buried dreams. I have my own future to worry about, especially after that stupid food critic scuttled my hopes of finally opening my own restaurant. But, the more time I spend with Griff, the more I'm beginning to realize that my plans mean nothing without him. If only I can convince him to give us a chance to follow our dreams together.
Blue: When my ex walks into the resort bar with his new husband on his arm, I want nothing more than to prove to him that I've moved on. Thankfully, the sexy stranger sitting next to me is more than willing to share a few kisses in the name of revenge. It gets even better when those scorching kisses turn into a night of fiery passion. The only problem? Turns out the stranger's brother is marrying my sister later this week. Tristan: I have one rule: no messing with the guests at my vineyard resort. Of course the one exception I make turns out to be the brother of the woman my brother's about to marry. Now we're stuck together for a week of wedding activities, and there's no avoiding the heat burning between us. So fine, we make a deal: one week. One week to enjoy each other's bodies and get it out of our system. Once the bride and groom say I do and we become family, it'll all be over between us. Right?
What happens when a group of tough vigilantes meets up with a big-hearted family with boundary issues? Reese: It's supposed to be an easy job. You know, the kind you get after you've been gone a while and the boss is unsure of how capable you still are? But then there's a mugging, an abduction, two thugs, and a blackmail scheme. And smack-dab in the middle of it is a beautiful lost soul who needs me. The scared, young gamer-geek pushes all my protective buttons and awakens something inside me that's ready to dive right in and inhale the man. But how could I have anything to offer someone like Ben? I'm a mess. Injured, scarred, practically closeted, the recognizable son of a famous man... There's no way I can ask him to give me a shot at forever. Right? Ben: It seems like I've been looking out for myself my entire life. Heck, I was even given away the day I was born. And, yeah, maybe if my adoptive parents had survived, I would have had a nice life. But they didn't. And I don't. Instead, I'm forced to put up with a hateful, scheming foster parent for the sake of sticking around to care for my little sister. Only, when a blackmail plan lands little Georgie in the hands of thugs, it's clear I'm her only hope. At least... until I meet the big, strong bodyguard someone sends to watch over me. Reese is everything I've ever daydreamed about: protective, attentive, affectionate, and dedicated. But he's hiding something, and I don't have the time or energy to figure out what. Because time is running out, and Georgie is the only family I have left. Until the biological brother who never wanted me shows up and turns everything on its head. After having finally accepted it's just Georgie and me, suddenly falling for my protector and being surrounded by Griff and the Marian clan makes me question everything I've ever known about myself and what defines a family. Can a guy with a broken past ever build a family with someone who seems too good to be true?
Teddy: If there's one thing I don't do, it's commitment. You don't become an award-winning photographer by staying in one place. I'm always on the road, looking for the next shot, the next award, the next hot body. Which is how I end up on Dr. James Marian's front porch in the middle-of-nowhere Alaska. He's known as the Wildlife Whisperer, and I want to photograph him in action. He's reluctant at first, but I can be persuasive. Soon enough I have him in bed saying yes over and over and over again, but my ability to shoot and scoot is frozen by a Denali snowstorm. Jamie: I always thought of myself as the marrying type. Until I got left at the altar. Now I have a new motto: never commit and never fall in love. So when a cocky nature photographer decides I'm the key to his next masterpiece, it seems like the perfect arrangement: the hotshot's only in town for a brief assignment and then he'll be gone. No commitment, no strings, and no chance of getting my heart broken again. There's just one problem: I think I'm falling in love. Now I'm afraid that maybe I'm the marrying type after all. And he definitely is not.
Jude: Reaching the top of the country music charts brings out the crazy, and there's no one crazier than my ex. Unfortunately, his threats to out me are escalating. Enter the bodyguard of my dreams. I'd probably chafe under his constant presence if his attention to my body wasn't so... ah... thorough. Now I have to worry about outing myself to millions of fans if I can't keep my hands off him in public. Derek: Now I'm an ex-Marine turned babysitter. If I have to hear Jude sing his mega-hit Bluebells one more time, I might murder him myself, and after 6 years in special ops, I know my way around a weapon. Unfortunately, so does he. Except his arsenal includes washboard abs and a killer set of pipes. I've faced guns, knives, explosives and yet it's Jude Marian who may end up bringing me to my knees.
AJ: I know Dante's story better than anyone. After all, I was the one who rescued him from his homophobic, abusive father eight years ago. Since then, I've kept my distance, but when I run into him at the Marian House gala and he doesn't recognize me, I can't resist the incredible, sensitive man he's become. I would do anything to protect Dante Marian, but what if his past keeps me from being part of his future? Dante: Every new relationship has obstacles, it just turns out that ours involves my bumbling inexperience (ugh), an octogenarian naughty toy party (don't ask), and being on the run in an RV with Aunt Tilly (it involves the Secret Service- no really, don't ask). When my biological father takes his homophobic views to a national platform, the only way to stand up for what I believe in is to claim my past and confront him. So now it's time to decide: do I put the past behind me and walk away from AJ for good or face my biggest fear and fight for what's mine?
Nico:I left my family and tiny Texas hometown fifteen years ago to escape small-town gossips and to give my mom and sister the chance at a better life. But when a phone call from an attorney back home informs me that my sister passed away, leaving me custody of her newborn baby, I'm shocked out of the steady life I've built for myself running a tattoo shop in San Francisco.The thing is: I don't do babies. And I don't do small towns. Or commitment. And I especially don't do family. My plan is to go back to Hobie just long enough to sign adoption papers, giving my niece the kind of stable, loving family I could never provide. But the moment I meet my niece in the arms of Weston Wilde, my sister's best friend and the town's handsome doctor, my plans begin to change. Because suddenly, I see a different future. One with the very thing I thought I never deserved: a family. If only I can convince West that I'm not the same good-for-nothing kid ready to bolt when things get tough.Weston:There's one thing I know for sure about Nico Salerno: he was a good-for-nothing as a kid and judging by the purple-haired, tattoo'd punk who shows up at his sister's funeral, he hasn't changed. There's no way I'm letting him take custody of my best friend's baby. But the more time I spend around him, the more I realize that his rough exterior is just a shell and that beneath all the tattoos is a scared, insecure man searching for a place to belong. And pretty soon I know exactly where he belongs: in my bed and by my side.The problem is, he abandoned his family once before, how do I know that if we become a family he won't do it again?Facing West is the first in the new Forever Wilde series about the huge Wilde family from Hobie, Texas, whose patriarchs aren't above a little meddling if that's what it takes to help their grandkids find true love.
Hudson: Don't ever accidentally propose to your girlfriend. In front of her family. Especially if her dad is your boss. Because when you make it clear you've made a mistake, he's likely to send you out of the country to get you as far away from his broken-hearted daughter as possible. It happened to me. Now I'm stuck in Ireland trying to redeem myself so I can get promoted and have the life I've planned for: successful career, loving wife and kids, a comfortable, financially-secure home life in Texas. But all of that seems to evaporate the moment I walk into the historic pub and see the most beautiful woman I've ever seen. Only, he's not a woman. Charlie Murray is most definitely a man-the kind of man who causes me to take a second look for the first time in my life. And a third look, and fourth. I can't help but want to get to know him better... to get close to him, touch him, maybe even kiss him. But I'm straight. Or so I've always thought. Even if I'm not, how in the world could a feisty Irishman ever fit into the safe, predictable life I've always planned for? Charlie: Don't ever accidentally fall for the straight guy. Especially when he's trying to pry your family's business right out from under you. I should know. Because when Hudson Wilde walks into my family's pub and begins babbling so adorably, I can't help but fall just a little bit in love. But I'm looking for Forever Man, and the sexy American is certainly not him. He's so confused about what he wants, even choosing something from the dinner menu throws him into a fuddle. But those eyes... how can I resist? So maybe I'll give in. One steamy night before he heads home and I go back to life at the pub. We'll never see each other again. Until, of course, his business deal sends me to Hobie, Texas, right into the middle of Hudson's steady life, more gay Wildes than can fit on a dance floor, and an ex-girlfriend who may or may not be content remaining an ex. But the more time I spend with Hudson, the more I think he might be my Forever Man after all. And I may be his. Is it possible we could both be so lucky? Hudson's Luck is the fourth book in the Forever Wilde series but can be read on its own. Beware it includes 93k words of delicious man parts touching, grandfathers meddling, neighbors nosy-ing, dogs fornicating, cats being cats, horses... ah, crunching apples? or something... and one very flirty Stevie.
Oz: Escaping the international modeling scene to design my own fashion collection is the first step to shucking my bobble-headed supermodel reputation and proving to the world I'm more than just a pretty face. But the minute I have to accept roadside help from the sexy man next door, I feel like the airhead people think I am. And what's worse, the man clearly doesn't think I'm worth the time of day. But despite trying to ignore my attraction to the mysterious doctor, I can't help but be drawn to him. With every moment spent together, I begin to realize he's hiding more than just some details of his past. He has one foot out the door. As soon as I start to feel like everything might be coming together for me, I realize the man I'm falling in love with isn't who I thought he was. Jake: After three years on the run for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, I've finally found a seemingly safe place to settle in Haven, Colorado. With friends, a job, and a cabin in the woods, I have everything I need to live a simple life without drawing attention to myself. Everything's fine. Fine. Until I meet my new neighbor. The gorgeous man is anything but subtle and brings color to my life that I didn't know was missing. But I learned years ago that falling in love with someone wasn't an option anymore when simply being seen with me could have dire consequences. It's time for me to run again, but I wonder if it's safe to stick around just long enough for a taste... Just when I begin to realize Oz is the missing piece to bring me back to life after years of hiding, my past catches up to me and throws everyone around me into danger. I know I should run, but what if it's time to finally stop running and make a stand, once and for all? While Body and Soul is the third book in the Twist of Fate series, each novel can easily be read as a standalone.
He promised to never leave me. But when I needed him the most, that was exactly what he did... Wilderness guide Xander Reed has spent fifteen years trying to forget the night he turned to his best friend in his darkest hour, only to find the young man who'd sworn to always have his back was turning his on Xander instead. Two thousand miles and fifteen years of building a new life in the quiet backcountry of the Rocky Mountains should have been enough to put the memory of Bennett Crawford out of his mind forever, but old wounds run deep and when Bennett suddenly reappears in his life as part of a wilderness expedition Xander is guiding, the scars he thought long healed break wide open. I'd only ever wanted to protect Xander from getting hurt again. I never considered the one he needed protection from was me... Bennett Crawford was faced with an impossible choice the night his best friend needed him. He chose wrong. As the only son of one of the wealthiest families in New England, he should have had the world at his feet, but losing his best friend at the tender age of fourteen changed everything. And even though Bennett's managed to hide behind a mask of contentment as he takes his place at his father's side in the family business, inside he's searching for the piece of himself that's been missing ever since Xander Reed walked out of his life. Bennett's only saving grace is his work with a group of inner city kids, and when he's given the chance to show the troubled teens that there's a bigger world out there waiting for them if they just have the courage to reach for it, he takes it. But when he steps off that bus for what was supposed to be a week of fun and adventure, he's instantly returned to the past when he discovers their expedition guide is none other than the boy he let go so long ago. Only, the soft-hearted, insecure little boy Bennett once knew is gone, and in his place is a brooding, bitter man who isn't interested in second chances. People leave. I know that now and nothing Bennett has to say to me will change anything... All Bennett wants is another chance to show Xander that friendship was only the beginning. But when a stubborn Xander refuses to even hear him out, Bennett realizes he's going to need to fight dirty. Because now that he's found Xander again, he's not letting him go a second time...
Otto: Seth Walker was my first love and I always swore he'd be my last. Even after he moved away our senior year in high school, we vowed to reunite after graduation. But when he suddenly broke things off without explanation and crushed my heart, it was my turn to run. After a decade in the navy, I've finally come home ready to move on with my life as Hobie's newest firefighter. Unfortunately, the minute I set eyes on the new sheriff in town, I know I'm screwed. Hobie's top cop is none other than Seth Walker. Turns out, he's come home too. And hell if he doesn't have a lot of explaining to do. Walker: I thought I was doing the right thing when I walked away from Otto Wilde ten years ago without an explanation. I was wrong. I also thought I could come back home without having to face my past mistakes. I was wrong about that too. What I'm not wrong about: The fact that my heart catches fire every time I set eyes on the sexy man. The fact that I can't imagine my life without him. The fact that things are still just as complicated now as they were then. And the fact that I have a lot of work ahead of me if I expect to win him back. Just when things start heating up between us again, a serial arsonist strikes and suspicion falls close to home. I already lost Otto to a secret long ago but I'll be damned if I let another threaten to send our future up in smoke. Because Otto Wilde is mine, and I don't plan on ever letting him go again.
Beauty. Beast. Not your grandma's fairy tale... Prince Christopher is as conceited as he is handsome. After his overwhelming ego offends an evil sorcerer, Christopher is robbed of the source of all his arrogance: his looks. Transformed into a hideous beast, Prince Christopher has only a limited time to fulfill a near-impossible condition or the curse will remain with him forever. Bobby Farmer is a stunning and innocent twink. When Bobby's father is imprisoned as a trespasser at Prince Christopher's castle, Bobby offers himself in his father's place, and Prince Christopher accepts the brave young man's deal. It isn't long before a friendship begins to blossom between the happy-go-lucky Bobby and the newly-humbled Prince. Friendship isn't enough to lift the sorcerer's shapeshifting curse, and unless Prince Christopher can win Bobby's heart, his fate will be sealed... But as the Prince-turned-beast wonders, how can a man whose beauty is more than skin-deep ever come to love a creature such as himself?
Sassy-mouthed Stevie Devore has always had a crush on the local fire chief. Gorgeous silver fox, Evan Paige, is way out of Stevie's league, however, not to mention the chief has always been a ladies' man, but when Stevie turns twenty-one, he decides he's tired of only daydreaming about Evan. He wants a real taste of that sugar daddy, even if it means turning the flirt factor up a notch or ten to make it happen. This 36k word story has pee-in-your-pants humor, peel-the-paint-off-the-walls steam, and a smidgie-poo of hand-on-chest swooning.
I've been drowning for a long time. I never thought I'd find someone who knows what that's like... Self-proclaimed playboy, Aiden Vale, has it all - good looks, successful career, plenty of cash in the bank and an endless supply of men who know the score... that one night is just that. So the last thing he wants, or needs, is to forge a connection that might mean revealing more of himself than he's ready to. But when fate intervenes, putting Aiden in the path of someone who threatens to knock down his carefully constructed walls, he's quick to realize the young man he's become infatuated with is hiding a painful secret. I finally have a shot at freedom. I'll never let anyone take that from me ever again... Ash Valentine is just looking for a way out, and the last thing he wants or needs is another man controlling every aspect of his life. Desperate for the cash that will help him flee his abusive boyfriend, Ash accepts what is supposed to be a temporary job at a local coffee shop. But nothing prepares him for the gorgeous and enigmatic Aiden Vale, and the small acts of kindness the charming coffee shop regular bestows on him or the new friends he begins to make along the way. Terrified of once again becoming too reliant on someone else to take care of him, Ash refuses Aiden's repeated offers of help in any form. But when it becomes clear that there's something more behind Aiden's need to save him, Ash begins to wonder if he's found someone who needs saving just as badly. I know he wants to save me, but what if he's the one who needs saving... As their tentative friendship turns into something more, long buried secrets begin to surface. When Aiden's need to protect Ash clashes with the younger man's desire for independence, memories of the one he couldn't save begin to tear at the fragile cords of Aiden's soul, and he's forced to face a truth he's been hiding from for a long time. Threatened with losing what they've only just found, will Aiden and Ash find a way to accept their pasts or will they let the pain drag them below the surface for good?
Fiction by W. E. B. Griffin,William Edmund Butterworth
Author: W. E. B. Griffin,William Edmund Butterworth
Recruited by Wild Bill Donovan to set up an airline that will be an OSS front in 1943 Argentina, Marine pilot Cletus Frade monitors two German operations, including a concentration-camp smuggling ring and a Nazi protection group. 350,000 first printing.
Noah Tanner loves life and the gay men who live it. Bisexuals rock too. Questioning? Even better. One-offs come and go like dates on a calendar, but his friends and his calling never do. He's spent years raising money for San Francisco's homeless in honor of the boyfriend who died. Ensuring the success of his upscale charity event is currently job one. He's closing in on his goal, but the deliciously scruffy, oh-so-sexy Bachelor Bid contestant, Dr. Kyland Davis, is proving far too distracting.Former Texan and no-nonsense surgeon Ky Davis prefers his beat-up Stetson boots to Louboutins. He's sacrificed a lot to help raise his siblings--including keeping his orientation a secret. After a difficult year for his sister, he'll do anything to see her smile again, even agree to participate in the fundraiser she's been hired to organize. Unfortunately, the accompanying makeover by the irreverent and gorgeous Noah Tanner might be his undoing...
On his 19th birthday Kyle Beauchamp gets the surprise of his life—a make out session in the back of the bus. With his wide receiver.Kevin Beauchamp loves two things, football and Kyle. After a rough game and a discreet blow job in the back of the bus, Kevin's life will never be the same. But the love of his life is straight, and off limits in more ways than one.When Kyle returns his feelings, Kevin has to decide if a few nights of intense passion is worth destroying their future. He knows one thing—loving his twin might be wrong, but losing Kyle would be like losing the other half of his soul.
Used in Stanford's CS102 Big Data (Spring 2017) course. Want to get started on data science? Our promise: no math added. This book has been written in layman's terms as a gentle introduction to data science and its algorithms. Each algorithm has its own dedicated chapter that explains how it works, and shows an example of a real-world application. To help you grasp key concepts, we stick to intuitive explanations, as well as lots of visuals, all of which are colorblind-friendly. Popular concepts covered include: A/B Testing Anomaly Detection Association Rules Clustering Decision Trees and Random Forests Regression Analysis Social Network Analysis Neural Networks Features: Intuitive explanations and visuals Real-world applications to illustrate each algorithm Point summaries at the end of each chapter Reference sheets comparing the pros and cons of algorithms Glossary list of commonly-used terms With this book, we hope to give you a practical understanding of data science, so that you, too, can leverage its strengths in making better decisions.