(Girlfriends of Gotham #1)
Publication date: April 15th 2015
Genres: Comedy, New Adult, Romance
It’s 1998…and New York City just might not be prepared for the Girlfriends of Gotham…
Natalie Pepper knows almost nothing about New York City, except that it’s far, far away from her home in California. When she packs up everything she owns and moves there on a whim, luck is on her side. She stumbles into a promising marketing job in the developing Internet industry and finds herself surrounded by poised and polished men who are nothing like the guys she knew back home.
One man stands out from the rest… CJ: All-American hunk and genuine good guy. But they work together, and giving in to their mutual attraction could put Natalie’s sparkly new world at risk. She resolves to look, but not to touch…if she can ignore the feeling that he’s the guy she’s been looking for her whole life.
Natalie’s new friend Candace Kanie has no such concerns. From the barroom to the boardroom, she’s used to getting exactly what she wants, and her no-crap attitude ensures nothing gets in her way. But when she meets Damon, the notorious playboy at Natalie’s company, she finds that her take-no-prisoners style might not be as effective in the romantic realm.
Frustrated and often irrational, Candace pushes for what she wants until something’s gotta give. And when it does, she realizes that the one thing she might not do better than anyone else is change.
The first book about the loves, lives, and laughter of a group of friends finding their way in the city is a laugh-out-loud romantic comedy full of Men and Martinis!
Saturday morning brought a call from Candace, who was gushing over her date with Damon. Like me, she’d gone home alone and felt proud of herself for it. My heart raced when we’d first started talking, and I realized that I was going to live with the always-present terror that she might find out I’d kissed Damon. After a few minutes, it was apparent that she didn’t know. I swallowed hard and tried to settle into our usual banter, feeling that at any moment my own tongue might betray me and tell her everything.
“It’s kind of backwards, isn’t it?” I asked her as I lounged in my bed, watching the shafts of sunlight trace dancing lines on the walls around my room.
“What do you mean?”
“Well, you with Damon and me with Sam. We’ve already slept with them, right? But we’re suddenly reversing our positions, now that we’re actually dating.”
“It’s not that odd,” she said.
“Doesn’t it seem messed up?”
“No, Pepper. This is how women of the nineties do things. We demonstrate to the men we want that we will happily put out. But then we show them that after the initial trial period, they need to make an investment in order to receive ongoing dividends.”
“You’ve been talking to financiers too much.”
“It’s the same thing. Sex is a commodity like anything else.”
“What a romantic sentiment.”
“Don’t pretend you don’t agree.”
“I don’t think I do.”
“Whatever. What are you doing today?”
“I don’t know. It’s kind of nice to have no plans at all,” I said.
“You wanna do something?” I offered, mostly to keep her from pouting.
“No, I can’t. I actually have to go to work. The French guy is coming back out in another week and I have to be ready to seal the deal.” She didn’t sound annoyed at all about having to work.
“You sounded mad that I didn’t want to do anything, and you’re not even free?”
“I just wanted you to want to hang out with me,” she said.
“Sure, that’s not needy.”
“Shut up. Don’t call someone needy for admitting that they like hanging out with you.”
“Sorry. I’ll call you later?”
“Good. Let’s do something tonight. My friend Lulu is back in town and you have to meet her. She’s hilarious. She’s tall, gorgeous. She’s Brazilian.”
“Nothing you’ve said so far makes me feel like I will love her. I kind of feel like I’ll hate her, actually.”
“No, you’ll love her. She makes every night an adventure. Call me later.”
I sighed and hung up. One minute later the phone rang again.
“Seriously?” I was sure it was Candace.
It was not. “Natalie?” It was Sam.
“Oh, hey!” I said, surprised to be hearing from him so soon after our date. I was used to guys waiting days or even weeks after a date before calling, either due to a total lack of actual interest in me or because of some devotion to the perception that it wasn’t cool to admit to actually liking someone.
“Wanna hang out tonight?” he asked. “I’m meeting a few friends at a lounge in Soho. I thought you might like to join in. I’d really love to see you again.”
“Can I bring a few friends?”
“Absolutely. We’re meeting at my place. Is that cool?” he asked.
“Yeah, that’s fine. I know you’re on 14th – what building?”
He gave me the details and we hung up. I lay in bed a bit longer mentally prodding my feelings to see what I thought about Sam. I found a lot of feelings about another blond boy that I knew. One who I saw every day at work, who fell squarely into no-man’s land, thanks to my rule about dating men from work.
Stewart has lived on both coasts, in big cities and small towns. She’s been a pharmaceutical rep, a personal trainer and a direct sales representative for a French wine importer. But she has always been a writer first.
A military spouse and the mother of two small boys, her current job titles include pirate captain, monster hunter, Lego assembler and story reader. She tackles all these efforts at her current home outside Washington D.C.
- 2 hand-painted martini glasses (US only)
- Signed paperbacks (Men and Martinis & Highballs in the Hamptons) (US only)
- 5x ebook copies of Men and Martinis (INTL)