Monahan's Gamble

Monahan's Gamble
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THE LOVE BET?The bettor: Sexy Sean Monahan. At stake: dating beautiful– if slightly flaky– Autumn Pulaski, the new girl in town, for more than her prescribed four weeks. If he could only get her to go out with him for eight weeks, then she' d be in danger of breaking her rule. Or was he the one in danger?While her no-man-for-more-than-four-weeks policy might sound a bit bizarre, twice-jilted Autumn was not about to risk her heart again. Not even for the bluest eyes this side of paradise. But when the four weeks were over, the sound of her rule had been replaced by… funny thing, they sounded like… wedding bells?

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“Autumn Pulaski Only Has Her Cockamamy Four-Week Rule Because She Knows It Will Make Guys That Much More Determined To Go Out With Her.”

Sean Monahan waited for his pronouncement to sink in.

His brother Finn studied him. “So what makes you think that you could avoid being so bamboozled yourself?”

“Like I said, I know women,” Sean reiterated. “I’m hip to her game before we even play it. I will come out the winner. In more ways than one.”

“You really think so?” Finn asked.

Sean nodded. “Hey, if there’s anybody out there who can last longer than four weeks with Autumn Pulaski,” he said with a smile, “I’m the man.”

Finn eyed Sean with much consideration. Then, right when it occurred to Sean, at the very back of his brain, that he might have just steered himself toward a deadly cliff, Finn uttered the words that, for thirty-four years, had tolled the death knell for Sean’s good sense.

“Prove it, little brother,” Finn said knowingly. “Prove it.”

Dear Reader,

The year 2000 has been a special time for Silhouette, as we’ve celebrated our 20th anniversary. Readers from all over the world have written to tell us what they love about our books, and we’d like to share with you part of a letter from Carolyn Dann of Grand Bend, Ontario, who’s a fan of Silhouette Desire. Carolyn wrote, “I like the storylines…the characters…the front covers… All the characters in the books are the kind of people you like to read about. They’re all down-to-earth, everyday people.” And as a grand finale to our anniversary year, Silhouette Desire offers six of your favorite authors for an especially memorable month’s worth of passionate, powerful, provocative reading!

We begin the lineup with the always wonderful Barbara Boswell’s MAN OF THE MONTH, Irresistible You, in which a single woman nine months pregnant meets her perfect hero while on jury duty. The incomparable Cait London continues her exciting miniseries FREEDOM VALLEY with Slow Fever. Against a beautiful Montana backdrop, the oldest Bennett sister is courted by a man who spurned her in their teenage years. And A Season for Love, in which Sheriff Jericho Rivers regains his lost love, continues the new miniseries MEN OF BELLE TERRE by beloved author BJ James.

Don’t miss the thrilling conclusion to the Desire miniseries FORTUNE’S CHILDREN: THE GROOMS in Peggy Moreland’s Groom of Fortune. Elizabeth Bevarly will delight you with Monahan’s Gamble. And Expecting the Boss’s Baby is the launch title of Leanne Banks’s new miniseries, MILLION DOLLAR MEN, which offers wealthy, philanthropic bachelors guaranteed to seduce you.

We hope all readers of Silhouette Desire will treasure the gift of this special month.

Happy holidays!

Joan Marlow Golan

Senior Editor, Silhouette Desire

Monahan’s Gamble

Elizabeth Bevarly

For Eathel and Rex Bellaver,

two of the funnest people I know.


is an honors graduate of the University of Louisville and achieved her dream of writing full-time before she even turned thirty! At heart, she is also an avid voyager who once helped navigate a friend’s thirty-five-foot sailboat across the Bermuda Triangle. Her dream is to one day have her own sailboat, a beautifully renovated older model forty-two-footer, and to enjoy the freedom and tranquillity seafaring can bring. Elizabeth likes to think she has a lot in common with the characters she creates, people who know love and life go hand in hand. And she’s getting some firsthand experience with motherhood, as well—she and her husband have a six-year-old son, Eli.


Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve



There was nothing Sean Monahan enjoyed more than a game of cutthroat poker—unless it was a game of cutthroat poker played with a couple of his brothers. Sean was a gambler by nature, and a winner by birth. When he took chances, they invariably played out. And there wasn’t much that gave him a bigger charge than fleecing his own flesh and blood.

Hey, that was just the kind of guy he was.

He and two of his brothers and two of their friends had only been playing poker for an hour, and already Sean’s take was substantial. Best of all, he’d won most of his loot from his big brother, Finn. At this rate he’d have the down payment for that new roadster he’d been lusting after for months, in no time at all.

As he sat in the kitchen of Finn’s expansive—and, Sean knew, expensive—condo, he gazed over a pretty decent hand at Cullen, one of his three younger brothers, and tried to gauge his sibling’s hand by the expression on Cullen’s face. As he did so, Sean puffed diligently on a very nice cigar, inhaled the spicy aroma of Finn’s famous five-alarm chili and pondered whether or not he should get up for another beer or simply wait until someone else did—preferably Finn—and have him get Sean one, too.

Life just didn’t get any better than this.

“Where’s Will tonight?” he asked, having noted the glaring absence of Will Darrow, Finn’s best friend since childhood and a staple at the group’s twice-monthly poker/chili/beerfest.

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