Our best time of year for contemporary romance novels has just come around and I have something fresh and hot to share with you. This basketball + pregnancy romance is perfect for fans of Love And Basketball, Basketball Wives, or any fans of NBA teams. This book follows the fictional Kansas Sundevils player, Rex Irving and his romantic relationship with the last person on earth he expected: his best friend's pregnant ex-girlfriend.
This book drips with lust and love that you expect from amazing romance novels with African American characters. Lydia Lowell, the female main character is a dark-skinned ex-model with flawless skin and a struggle to carve out a stable life for her unborn child. If you love beautiful romance novels saturated with the best contemporary fiction out there, check out this story between a black woman and a white man in a world that's darker and grittier than either of them could have ever imagined.
Here's the official book description:
My three interests are fighting, drinking and f##king.
When my best friend’s pregnant ex-girlfriend turns up at my doorstep, getting involved is the last thing on my mind.
Lydia isn’t like other women.
She doesn’t care what any man thinks of her, least of all me.
No one says no to Rex Irving.
I don’t care if she promises to never date another baller again.
I know just the way to change her mind.
Hank’s fingers snaked through my braids and he yanked my head to the left, slamming my body into his apartment wall.
“OUCH! You’re hurting me!”
“SHUT UP AND I’LL LET GO!”
“Fuck off, Hank!”
“I’ll make you pay, Lydia, I swear to God…”
“I’m pregnant with your child. I dare you nigga! I dare you!”
He punched the wall next to my face. I screamed and ducked, running down the hallway of Hank’s apartment, racing for the bedroom where I could barricade myself in when he calmed down.
“I swear to God, Lydia…”
I reached the bedroom door before him, but at seven feet, three inches tall, Hank could grab me from across the room, and he did, grabbing the back of my neck and yanking me back.
“Where. Is. It,” he growled.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about!”
“You know, Lydia. You knew where it was.”
“Can’t you get a new one made?”
“I swear, I didn’t take it.”
“I left it right inside that vase. Right there”
“Maybe one of your side-pieces took it!”
“Watch your mouth.”
“Let go of me.”
He released my arm from his grip and I grabbed it, rubbing the area where his fingers had pressed into my skin.
“This is how you treat the mother of your child?”
“I’m sorry, Lydia.”
“You’re always fuckin’ sorry.”
“I mean it,” Hank said, walking to the kitchen and pouring himself a full glass of Hennessy.
“No. I want you to stop drinking.”
“Shut up, Lydia.”
He drank and my heart quickened. I’d come here with a plan. As usual, Hank had gone crazy on me, and I was having second thoughts. Only this time, I’d practiced for every scenario with my best friend, Tiana. She was just a phone call away in case Hank went crazy.
“You have a game tomorrow. What do you think your coach will say if you show up drunk?”
“I said, shut up.”
I reached for my keys inside my bag, pushing them between my fingers in case I needed an easy weapon.
“Why do you even need that key?”
“It’s none of your business.”
“I didn’t take it.”
“Whatever, Lydia. I don’t want to talk about it. Now get dressed. I told the team we’d meet them at the club.”
“I said get dressed,” Hank snarled.
“What did you just say to me?”
“You heard me,” I replied, my hands trembling as I gripped my keys fiercely.
Hank polished off his Hennessy and approached me, the cognac on his breath churned my stomach.
“What did you say, Lydia?”
“I’m not going to the club.”
“Because it’s over, Hank. I’m dumping you.”
He laughed. It wasn’t a polite or awkward chuckle but a deep laugh with a vibrato that shook Hank Humphries’ high ceiling kitchen.
“I’m not joking. It’s over. And I’m leaving.”
“You’re pregnant. Where the hell are you gonna go?”
“I dunno,” I lied.
Hank snickered, “Great plan. Pregnant ex-model homeless in New York City. I’m sure you’ll have clients lining down the block.”
“That’s not funny, Hank. And anyway, I don’t care what you think. I’ll send Tiana on the weekend to collect my things.”
He glanced over at me and saw my pursed lips and shaking arms.
“You expect me to stop you?”
“No,” I lied.
“Good. Get out of here. You’ll just be a trash whore knocked up by Hank Humphries. It’ll be the best fucking thing that ever happened to you.”
I saw him for the pathetic man he was and for a moment, I nearly felt sorry for him.
“Try to quit drinking, Hank.”
“Get out. If you’re leaving, get out.”
I walked towards the front door of his apartment but before I could reach the door to the penthouse, Hank was behind me. I reached for the front door and he grabbed my other hand, throwing me up against the wall again. I cried out as my head slammed against the wall.
“Why are you doing this now, huh Lydia? Are you sleeping with one of my team mates? Are you choking on another guy’s cock…”
“Let me go…”
“Tell me,” he growled, “Now.”
I stared into his deep brown eyes with resentment.
“No. I promise.”
“Good. Because that pussy is mine. Whether you like it or not, it’s mine forever.”
He let go of me forcefully and I nearly lost my balance.
“Get out of my house, whore.”
I made it to the hallway and breathed a sigh of relief. After five years, I’d managed to shake Hank Humphries, and its as all because of my baby — all because of her. I touched a hand to my stomach and smiled as I walked away. No more Hank. I’d finally done it. Once I got closer to the elevator, I felt freer.
I walked outside and prepared to walk the mile or so back to my place. I reached for my phone and called Tiana as soon as I was on the street.
“Yeah. It’s surreal. I finally did it.”
“Good. Did you bring up Bali?”
“Fuck him. Did he lay hands on you?” Tiana asked.
“No… Well, yeah. A little bit,” I admitted. Tiana made me promise I’d stop lying about when Hank went too far with me.
“Fuck that bastard.”
“He’s still the father of my child,” I reminded her.
“I could do worse. He’s in the NBA.”
“He’s a deadbeat,” Tiana reminded me, “They’re all deadbeats.”
“So fuck them!”
“Are you home?”
“K, I gotta go so call me once you’re home?”
“Love you girlie!”
Tiana left me in bliss for the walk home. Yes, I’d caught my man cheating on me while I was four months pregnant with his baby, after we’d gone through so much to have this kid, but that wasn’t even the worst part of our relationship, just the straw that broke the camel’s back.
My feet were heavy as I climbed the stairs up to my apartment, much smaller than Hank’s on a sketchier, more fragrant side of town. As I approached the door, I noticed a piece of paper stuck to it.
These Jehovah’s Witnesses at it again, I thought to myself.
I didn’t mind the kind old ladies and their faith so much as I wished they would stop leaving pamphlets taped to my door. As I got closer, I got a sinking feeling that Jehovah’s Witnesses didn’t have red pamphlets and “EVICTION NOTICE” probably wasn’t one of those obscure books of the Bible either. I grabbed the piece of paper and ripped it off the door, rereading it over and over again.
“This serves as notice that you have been evicted from the premises, effective immediately. Please speak to the manager to begin the process of moving your belongings. Your presence on this property without permission of the manager is a crime, and the authorities will be called.”
Bullshit. I paid my rent on time, every month and I’d never so much as smoked inside the building. Evicted? Like this? No way in hell. I chucked the paper on the ground and stuck my key in the lock. I rattled it.
“What the hell,” I muttered out loud to myself.
I rattled the key in the lock again. The key didn’t budge. I picked up my cellphone and called my landlord, a chubby, short white woman who lived in yoga pants, messy buns and twenty year old New Balance sneakers.
“Kathy? It’s me, Lydia.”
“Oh hey Lyd, what can we do for ya?”
“I just uh… showed up at my apartment after a day away and there was an eviction notice pinned to my door and uh… my key won’t work.”
“Well uh. This has to be some sort of mistake. Can you check?”
“Jerry’s out of town, but he’s got a whole system, I’m sure it’s not a mistake.”
“Is your husband here in LA?”
“Uh huh. He must have changed the locks.”
“Could I call him, get them changed back? Kathy, you can check the direct deposits, I’ve never been late on a payment, I swear.”
“Call Jerry, 555-4322”
I hung up, my hands trembling. Kathy’s reaction hadn’t exactly been apologetic or reassuring. I called Jerry.
“Heya, who is this?”
“It’s Lydia Lowell, your tenant in the Hamilton Estate Complex.”
“Oh Lydia! What’s goin’ on?”
“I got home today to an eviction notice on my door.
“I’m pretty sure it’s a mistake. I’m not behind on rent or anything.”
“According to Ryan in accounting, you are.”
“I’m not though. I pay by check every month. The money comes out of my account.”
“Hm. I’ll have to look into that. I’ll call you back tomorrow and we’ll see if we can sort it out.”
“Tomorrow? Jerry, listen, maybe you don’t understand… My key doesn’t work. I can’t get into my apartment. At all.”
“What about that fella of yours, the Sundevil.”
“Hank and I broke up.”
“Oh, sorry to hear about that ma’am.”
“Jerry, where am I supposed to go tonight? Can’t you call your guy and find out what’s going on?”
“No can do. I got a business dinner with some developers from Denver.”
“Thanks, Jerry. Thanks.”
I hung up and slammed my phone against the wall with a frustrated groan, lucky that I didn’t crack it. Great. I couldn’t go home, I couldn’t go to Hank’s and I was getting tired of standing on my feet. The first trimester had been hell and so far the second wasn’t any better.
I called Tiana.
“Hey girl, I’m home. But I have some bad news.”
“Is it Hank?”
“No. There’s been some kind of fuck up with my landlord and they served me an eviction notice, changed the lock and everything.”
“Damn girl, what happened?”
“I don’t know. It’s a mistake. I just — I’m pregnant. I can’t handle this right now!”
“Come down here.”
“My money’s inside, I only got about $20.”
“I told you I don’t use Uber anymore,” I snapped.
“Sheesh, calm down! One Uber driver grabs your ass and you’re willing to throw the whole thing out the window.”
“Sorry, I don’t want to deal with creeps right now, Tiana. I’m pregnant and hormonal and having the worst goddamn day.”
“Okay. Fine. Walk down here then. Can you handle it?”
“Yeah. I think so.”
“Great. I’ll wait for you. But Felix and I wanted to take you out.”
“I don’t want to go out…”
“You have to. You got dumped by Hank Humphries, the media is going to be on this shit.”
“I don’t care about the media. I’m going to be a mom. I want a good life for me and my baby, that’s it.”
“Your baby will never have to worry about a damn thing.”
“Fine. I’m on my way.”
“Good. But no drinking for you!”
“Of course not.”
“Ciao, girlie!” Tiana shrilled before hanging up.
I started walking towards Tiana’s place, a long way away from mine on foot. I felt like a fool, adorned in Yeezy sneakers and a Gucci bag but with only $20 in my pocket and an NBA player’s baby. I’d become a stereotype for L.A. Models and the love that I’d been seeking was nowhere to be found. I stomped on the eviction notice, causing the orange paper to rip as I stormed away.
At night, the sweltering heat of Los Angeles in the summer cooled to a tolerable but smoggy climate. I walked as fast as I could, hoping to get to Tiana’s place before dark. Dark fell before I’d completely a third of my journey. I reached into my purse for my phone, hoping that I could convince her to meet me at a café a little further away from her place so we could walk together. I pulled my phone out when I heard footsteps behind me.
They were too close and too fast for me to react. I felt the cold steel press into my belly. My baby.
“Give me your fuckin’ purse.”
My body shook from head to toe.
“Give me the fuckin’ phone.”
He yanked the purse off my shoulder and I handed him the phone, my body trembling as I didn’t dare to move.
“Now the Yeezys. Take off the fuckin’ Yeezys.”
He prodded my side with the gun.
“Okay, okay, fine.”
“These ugly fuckin’ shoes go for about $300, don’t they?”
I didn’t bother answering as I shamefully stripped down to my white socks.
“Good. Now you stand still missy and if you dare turn around, I’ll blow your fuckin’ face in.”
“Okay. Fine. I won’t turn around.”
He ran off in the opposite direction. By the time I dared to turn around, the street was empty and I stood all alone with no way of calling Tiana, no shoes, and no purse. There went my emergency $20. I kept walking, hugging my shoulders and staring off into the distance with a dazed expression. I couldn’t feel the chilly night and my mind was blank as I went through the motions, plodding one foot in front of the other.
A loud car horn blared behind me.
Great, another asshole.
I kept walking and the car pulled alongside me, slowing down.
I didn’t turn and look.
“HEY! Humphries’ chick!”
I jerked my head around. Rex Irving, my ex-boyfriend’s teammate and as I’d guessed, another complete asshole.
“Oh. Hey. Didn’t hear you.”
“Sure. What’s up, where are you shoes?”
“I got time. Where’s Hank?”
“Hank and I are finished.”
“Sorry to hear that.”
His grin indicated otherwise.
“Yeah, you look sorry.”
His grin didn’t falter.
“Where you goin’ with no shoes?”
“The boulevard. My friend Tiana’s place.”
“You’re going to walk forty minutes with no shoes?”
“Why don’t you let me give you a ride?”
“Because I wouldn’t get in a car with another NBA player if you offered me fifty-thousand dollars.”
“Your girl Tiana’s at the club anyway. Thought you should know.”
“I follow her on the ‘gram.”
“Of course you do,” I replied with an exaggerated eye roll which amused Rex.
“What? Everyone knows Tiana Wheeler is smoking hot.”
“Thanks for the offer, but I think I can handle it.”
“You don’t have a purse. Or a phone. Or shoes. Let me guess, mugging?”
My cheeks grew hot.
“Why don’t you just go home?”
“I got evicted today.”
“Damn. And you still won’t accept my offer for a ride? Hank must have really screwed the pooch.”
“He did. I’m pregnant.”
“Okay, now this is a matter of honor. Get in the car or I’ll honk my horn and I won’t stop until you open that door.”
“Rex, no —”
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If you loved this free sample and want to read another book opening 100% free, why don't you consider The Biggest Ego? Read the first part of this older woman, younger man billionaire romance here: Click here to read.
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