Who said tempting a sweet Southern belle would be easy?
Bikers and Pearls (Summerbrook #1) by Vicki Wilkerson
eBook, 238 pages
Published August 12th 2013 by Entangled: Bliss
When rebel biker Bullworth Clayton gets tangled up with pastel-and-pearls-clad April Church, sparks fly. Sure, April would clearly rather work with anyone else, but if teaming up with Bull means a successful charity event for a sick little boy they both care about, then so be it.
April is baffled at how drawn she is to the leather-wearing, tattooed Bull—he just doesn’t fit with her simple, safe, country-club life. And as much as the handsomely rugged man tempts her, she still can’t shake the images of the tragic motorcycle accident from her past, which left her scarred and her father broken.
Bull tempts her to don a pair of leather pants and go for a ride with him, while April desperately tries to resist her attraction to the wild side and keep her exploits hidden from her small town. Will they be able to navigate their differences and find a middle road to love?
Let’s get to the good part first—the part about the crazy fun I had writing Bikers and Pearls. It started out with me needing to do some research—lots of research. You see, I had actually never ridden on a motorcycle before—not even a spin around the block. My brother-in-law was a weekend biker, so I asked Joe if he’d take me for a ride. He lives in the country, so I was thinking a slow, leisurely ride down a few rural roads around his farm. But, oh, no. I evidently didn’t communicate that wish or assumption or whatever to Joe. Instead, I innocently—no, make that stupidly—climbed on the back of his Harley, and he took me down Ashley River Road, a scenic/historic two-lane highway near Charleston, South Carolina, with thousands of hundred-year-old oak trees, reaching almost into the road, ready to murder innocent—no, make that stupid—folks like me. And how fast did he take me, you ask? Well, it was way above the 55 mph posted speed limit (and, BTW, even the posted speed limit is too fast for that dangerous road).
I prayed. Literally. Over and over again. I vowed—during the ride—that if I ever made it back to stationary land that wasn’t speeding under my feet at 70 mph, I’d never do something so foolish again!
Then there’s Joe’s side of the story. He says he still has marks from my hands where I gripped him too tightly. He’ll offer to show the marks to you if you get into a conversation with him about it. After the ride, he was gracious enough to answer all my questions about the machines and the reasons behind some of the gadgets on the motorcycles. He explained a great deal about the biker culture to me. He even gave me some of his Harley manuals and catalogues so that I’d get the research right.
Seriously, though, I would love to ride again someday—just not with Joe! But don’t tell him that.
When I finally got down to writing April and Bullworth’s (Bull’s) story, I was armed with enough material for three books. I’ve never taken myself too seriously, so I saw the absolute absurdity in the way I looked groping motorcycles, pointing to their various and sundry parts and asking idiotic questions wherever I went. I was as uninformed about bikes as my character April. So, I was able to use that ignorance and apprehension when writing about April’s reactions to motorcycles.
And now I’m going to tell you all something that’s a little embarrassing. As I sat in my office typing away at the story, I laughed. Audibly. Again and again. By myself. I guess it was a good thing I was by myself; otherwise, someone may have thought me a candidate for some serious counselling. I really did have lots of fun writing April and Bull’s story. April got herself into ridiculous situation after situation—until she finally learned her lesson. She is like me—and maybe like some of you—imperfect. As we make our way through this crazy journey called life, we laugh and cry and, hopefully, we learn.
Now to the more serious stuff. April and Bull’s story is a romance about two people from two completely opposite worlds. April is a cautious Southern belle whose very ordered life is turned upside down by Bull who is a drop-dead-gorgeous biker with a past. She has a past, too, but hers is filled with the trauma caused by a gang of Rebel Angel bikers after a fatal accident in which she and her father were involved.
The story’s inception came to me like all my ideas for books—with a message. I wanted to entertain readers while giving them a little more to chew on than just a cute story. It is especially troublesome to me when I see people judging others without getting to know them or giving them a chance. Many times people see only the outsides, and they miss all the good stuff on the inside—like Forest Gump’s statement about life being a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get with people either. You’ll miss the variety, however, if you try to judge them from what the outsides look like.
I hope you’ll enjoy reading Bikers and Pearls—at least a fraction of the amount of fun I had writing it. It is also my sincerest wish that you turn that last page with laughs under your belt, light in your heart, and a smile on your face.
About the author:
Vicki is a native of the Charleston, South Carolina, Lowcountry and loves to share her enchantment with the area with readers through her writing. Even in childhood, she enjoyed penning stories and poems—no doubt fueled by her grandfather's enthusiasm for telling tales himself. Where else—but in the South—could one find the interesting blend of salt water, eerie swamps, unwritten traditions and unique characters? In her spare time, she loves traveling, spending weekends at her family's lake house, playing golf and cooking (with lots of wine). Visit Vicki at http://www.vickiwilkerson.com.
Opposites attract is a timeless themes authors reinvent in order to tell their character's stories. Author Vicki Wilkerson takes this theme and makes it her own with Bikers and Pearls, the first book in her Summerbrook series for Entangled Publishing's Bliss imprint.
Bikers and Pearls is the type of story a romance reader can fall into while relaxing. April, a pearl-wearing conservative young woman works as an insurance consultant and has a big heart. She likes to help others, in particular a sick little boy. She attends a meeting in her town to brainstorm fundraising ways to help pay for this boy's hospital bills and is surprised to see bikers in attendance. As a child, April witnessed something traumatic with her dad and a biker gang and her family has had to endure its repercussions ever since. Unfortunately, the good looking guy who sits next to her, Bull, is a biker and she has to tell her heart and her body's reaction that he's off limits.
Bull is the kind of character ladies can easily fall for while they're reading. He's good-natured, compassionate, strong, and finds himself drawn to April despite his dislike for her 'type' of woman. She stands for what he can't stand: snobbish, affluent, jaded small town-minded society ladies. But he soon realizes from watching April she's not really like that at all and grows protective of her. Where Bull is open and up front, April is the complete opposite with her closed-up ways. I found it hard at times to relate to April and thankfully, the more she's around Bull, the better she became. As for Bull, I became a cheerleader for him from the beginning. Talk about a patient man! Bad mistakes when he was a kid, he changed his life around to become a businessman. Yes, he's a biker, rides a Harley, but don't judge him only by his ride.
Both characters have their share of troubles. It takes April a lot of time to break out of her shell and accept the idea that falling in love with a biker isn't a bad thing. When she does, this story turns really sweet and remains a clean read throughout. There was certainly a contemporary Pride and Prejudice vibe between April and Bull. The town of Summerbrook becomes a character with its poignant descriptions and accurate portrayal of life in a small Southern town. It was nice to see so much emphasis on community participation in raising monies for a sick child.
Bikers and Pearls puts the 'sweet' in sweet romance.Take this story for a test drive and fall in love with it.
Okay, here goes my comment. Without reading the story, I found this cover adorable and it made me want to read the book. After finishing the book, the guy in the picture doesn't strike me as being like Bull. I pictured someone else. And I hope that bike is a Harley.
I received a promotional eBook from the publisher for my honest review during a blog tour. Thank you Entangled Publishing.
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