Welcome to the blog tour for CURIOUS OBSESSION, a standalone adult contemporary romance by Elora Ramirez. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: CURIOUS OBSESSION
Author: Elora Ramirez
Publisher: Awake Indie Press
Release Date: July 26, 2021
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Amazon DE | Amazon IT | Amazon FR
One moment Juniper Reese existed, and the next she vanished into thin air.
This is how it feels for Lavender, her twin, when she receives the call that Juniper didn’t show up to her job one morning. Still adjusting to Juniper’s cross-country move to run from the ghosts of their mother’s death, Lavender knows something is wrong — but she also knows her sister is still alive.
As she follows Juniper’s footsteps in an unfamiliar town, she begins to uncover a plot that seems to suggest her sister was being stalked before her disappearance. Now it’s on her to find Juniper before time runs out and convince those around her that her disappearance wasn’t an attempt to “get away.”
What she doesn’t know is that she’s being watched by someone who just realized perfection came twice. He begins to hone in on Lavender, his attention never satisfied until he can have them both for himself.
Will Lavender be able to find her sister before time runs out? Or will she be the next target in an obsession gone wrong?
My brain tries to grasp at the clues that we do have and nothing happens — just a blank space where the answers should be. I feel an exhaustion settle in my bones and find myself collapsing into one of the desks, resting my head on my arm.
No one warns you about the crazy-making urgency of looking for a loved one who has disappeared. It’s only been a few days and still I am convinced Juniper will walk around the corner any moment, frustrated that we’re in her space and questioning why we’re freaking out about her brief vacation.
“I told you I was leaving.” She would look at me in that way of hers, where suddenly I wonder if we really did share the same space — the same everything — for nearly 22 years.
“Oh.” I would remember a conversation with clarity and then flush with embarrassment. “You’re right. I forgot.” I’d wave my hand, a can you believe me? type of gesture, and laugh it off.
That’s just a twisted sort of fantasy though, a way my heart is handling this separation that feels more like an amputation. A make-believe world filled with stories of pretend. I don’t know how to exist in this world without my sister taking up space next to me, and so I am creating one where she is still here. Still present. Still bossing the hell out of everyone around her and making me feel less like her identical twin and more like the forgotten and annoying little sister.
I rest my hands on my hips and roll my shoulders, feeling the knots constrict and separate. My stomach growls, a low murmur that grows exponentially. I grimace, realizing I haven’t had anything to eat since the banana I grabbed from my kitchen yesterday afternoon.
I open my eyes and notice Jasper watching me from his perch against one of the desks.
I blush a little, embarrassed by his concern.
“I’m fine. Don’t you have classes or something?”
“I took a long weekend to prep for the gala. It was an agreement between Juniper and me. I would take today off and then she would take next Monday off to wrap everything up.”
“Oh. Is it really that big of a deal?”
He laughs and rolls his eyes. “Like you wouldn’t believe. Think prom times ten.”
“Yeah.” He rubs his face. “There’s way too much money floating around here.”
He pushes off the desk and stretches his arms above his head, his shirt lifting just enough for me to get a peek of his stomach. I bounce my eyes away quickly.
“I don’t think I’ve eaten in over 24 hours,” I respond. I’m running my fingernail against a notch in the desk, avoiding looking in his direction. The air seems to have shifted in the last few minutes, and I can’t place it. It’s not attraction. I don’t even know this person. Maybe it’s just chemistry. But whatever it is, I’m not doing it. I shut down, waiting for him to leave.
“I was planning on grabbing some Mediterranean for lunch if you want to join. There’s a decent place off Thayer St.” He shrugs and keeps his face nonchalant.
I think for a moment.
“Yeah. Yeah food sounds amazing, actually. Do you mind driving?”
We make our way down the hall, and I tell myself it’s just lunch — it’s nothing — it doesn’t have to be something because he’s a guy and I’m a girl and we’re going somewhere. I twirl my keys, trying to find something casual to talk about, when I feel like someone is watching us. I turn around suddenly, expecting to see someone following behind, but I only catch a brief shadow disappear around the corner by Juniper’s door. I frown, craning my neck to see if I can catch any other movement.
“Everything okay?” Jasper’s voice cuts through the silence and I can feel his breath on the back of my neck. I didn’t realize he was so close and I jump.
So much for casual.
“Sorry,” he says, stepping back.
“No. It’s fine. I’m just…I thought I saw something. It’s nothing.”
But it’s not nothing. I know it like I know the hairs still standing at attention on my neck and the way my insides bounce against each other, threatening a gag reflex. I try to stay calm and keep my hands from shaking, but it doesn’t work. My nails leave indentations against the palms of my hands and I can feel a sheen of sweat gathering on my upper lip. I glance behind me again as we walk through the door outside, but there’s nothing to prove what I know.
Someone is watching us.
I just wish I knew who.
About the Author
Elora Ramirez has always been a word girl.
It started when she was four, when she taught herself how to read and write as a way to entertain herself while her grandmother kicked and danced in aerobics class. She cut her teeth on books from Dr. Seuss and writing anywhere she could find the space — including her Fischer Price kitchenette, the pages of picture books, and Highlights Magazines.
She’s matured a bit since then, now choosing to write in the margins of her books and on the mirrors of her bathroom ideas and thoughts surrounding story and what makes us human. By day she leads a team at a tech company, waking up before the sun rises to get in her love for words before stepping into her role of helping others see the plot line of their own story under development.
Intuition and beauty get her through the day, as well as her chef-husband and their little lion son. Curious Obsession is her fourth novel.