Tough Enough to Tango – Book 2

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When her father’s heart problems sideline him, Shae Harriman agrees to oversee Sullivan’s Creek, the largest residential building project the company has ever tackled. Though she has the education, her lack of management or supervisory experience, alienates her crews.

Megastar singer Ned Collier undertook Sullivan’s Creek to get his mother into safer housing while he is on the road. But he’s running out of money and doesn’t want her, or anyone else, to know. To Shae’s consternation, he insists on serving as project manager to control costs.

Their inexperience, pitted against her desire to succeed, his penny-pinching, and high stakes construction issues propel them into each other’s arms. Can they build a life, as well as housing, together?


The invitation just slipped out. But once offered, she knew this was exactly what she wanted, despite all the arguments she’d given herself.

A muscle twitched on Ned’s forearm. Probably involuntary, but the movement shot ripples of pleasure throughout her body. Yes, this was what she wanted, all right, discretion be damned.

In a hoarse whisper, she breathed, “I’ve got to know.”

His eyes narrowed into a blur of gray curiosity.


“What it’s like. Making love with you.”

He stepped back. “I…uh, where did that come from?”

She removed her hand from his arm. “Left field, I guess.”

He eyed her, probably to figure out how to rebuff her advances gently. But she’d put herself so far out there that anything he said or did other than drag her off to bed would be a rejection. Why had she set herself up like this?

The Story Behind the Story

Although it’s difficult if not downright impossible for me to pick my favorite of the books I’ve written, I feel especially proud of “Tango,” because this one is about the construction phase of Sullivan’s Creek. It was written while my husband and I built our second dream house. This was our downsized home for our later years complete with walk-in shower, office for me on first floor, engineered walnut wood flooring, and a man-cave woodworking shop for my husband. I was there on the lot every few days in the summer of 2013 taking photos of each phase of the building process so this story could reflect the same. Some of those photos are posted on Pinterest,

My husband even served as technical adviser on the book, so I wouldn’t botch up the terms or confuse the process.

This book is also special in that it is a “reincarnation” of the original manuscript. The first version of this book was finished a few years ago. I left it alone for a few months while I moved on to another manuscript. During that period, the flash drive on which it was stored became corrupted. Though shaken when I discovered the problem, I wasn’t worried because I had a back-up on my external drive. However, when I went to retrieve that version, it wouldn’t convert. After several months of attempting every means I could find to “uncorrupt” the flash drive, I finally had to concede defeat. Fortunately, I’d kept an earlier version of the first part of the book on another flash drive and had paper copies of the excerpts of later chapters I’d sent to my critique partners. It took several more months to recreate as much of the original version as I could remember. Along the way, I made more revisions and hopefully enhanced the manuscript even more.
In real estate, they say, “Location, location, location.” In writing, it’s, “Back up, back up, back up.