Title: Closed Set
Author: Julia Harlow
Genre: Erotica, Romance
Release Date: June 15, 2014Summary:
Cassandra Carlson is working on her five-year plan. A professional dancer, she moved to Los Angeles after college to work at her best friend’s Hollywood dance studio. She decides she can put up with the glitterati for the time being until she saves enough to open her own studio back home in Cincinnati.
When soon-to-be A-list British actor, Christopher Edwards, comes to her for dance lessons for his new film, the attraction is instantaneous and intense. Both are young, available and beautiful, but while she finds Hollywood garish and superficial, he’s on the brink of realizing his life’s ambition with no inclination for a serious relationship. Or so he thinks.
Just when their white-hot desire can no longer be denied, a jealous actress targets Cassandra in an insidious scheme, and a powerful studio head poses a formidable threat to them both. Cassandra puts herself in jeopardy in order to protect Christopher, but will she lose him in the process?
I face Cassandra, firmly grasping her shoulders. Without taking my eyes from hers, I nod towards the door. “Tell him to give us a minute.”
Her eyebrows shoot up and her perfect pink mouth frowns at me. “What are you doing, Mr. Edwards?”
“Please, just tell him to wait.”
“I’m trying to run a business here.”
I pull her into the alcove away from Kurt’s view, with her reluctantly trailing behind me. “You need to be really careful around this guy. He’ll take one look at you in that leotard,” my eyes flicker over her curvaceous body, “and if you touch him the way you touched me, he’ll interpret it as an open invitation to have sex with him.”
She backs away from me dislodging my grip on her shoulders and bites out, “I appreciate your concern, Mr. Edwards. Consider me duly forewarned.” Before I can stop her she’s across the room, greeting Kurt and showing him where to change. She stalks back to me none to gracefully.
“Well?” With her hands planted on her hips, she nods towards the door, clearly expecting me to leave.
“Being on your guard is not enough. I’m staying.”
“You are absolutely not staying.” She might as well be stamping her dainty foot with that petulant expression on her face.
“Look, I know Kurt Jordan. He’s in the film I’m working on. This guy’s got a criminal record.” I soften my voice hoping to get through to her. “Please, don’t do this.” Casting her black-lashed eyes up at me I finally detect understanding in those green depths.
“Okay, okay.” She shakes her head and sighs. “I’ll have my boss come down and stay in my studio while he’s here.”
“Is your boss a man?”
“Brinley Collins is every ounce a woman, but I wouldn’t cross her if you value your manhood.”
“Call her. I’ll wait.” Glancing skyward in exasperation, she grabs her phone and calls Brinley.
“Let me have your cell number so I can call you after his lesson to make sure you’re all right. Please.” I pat down my sweats in search of my phone to enter her number but remember it’s in my jeans pocket in the changing room.
“My cell number is private and not for clients.” She starts to turn away from me.
“Either I get your number or I stay here. Your choice, Cassandra. This is serious.”
She grabs and pen and scribbles her number on a piece of paper and thrusts it at me. “Happy now?”
“No, but at least it’s something.”
Kurt passes me on my way to the changing room. After making a disgusting wet sound with his tongue he says, “That’s one sweet piece of ass in there. Can’t wait for my turn.”
“What?” I snarl, jerking around to face him, fists tight at my sides, itching to knock that smirk off his cocky face.
“Don’t be such a stiff ass, Edwards,” he sneers, punching me hard in the shoulder before sauntering toward Cassandra.
Yanking off my sweats, T-shirt and shoes, I change quickly, far too agitated to shower. A small stack of colorful Dance Academy of Beverly Hills brochures sits on a glass-topped table at the entrance of the changing room. I snatch one up on the way back to the studio doorway hoping it contains information about Cassandra, whom I really shouldn’t be interested in.
A slim blond with soft features perches on a stool keeping a hawk- eye on Kurt Jordan. Must be Brinley Collins.
The mild, breezy late summer day is lost on me as I stalk to the parking lot. What the fuck am I doing? Without even knowing this girl for more than a couple of hours, I’m intervening in her business. Focusing on my career is first and foremost after struggling for fifteen years to finally get recognition. The last thing I need is to get ensnared in this Kurt Jordan shit, or to get involved with Cassandra Carlson. With a sharp yank, I slam the car door, start the engine and accelerate away from the Dance Academy of Beverly Hills and that frustrating, enticing woman.
Dream Cast for Closed Set by Julia Harlow
There was never the slightest doubt in my mind who should play the part of Christopher Edwards. It must be Henry Cavill. Swoon-worthy doesn’t begin to cover his gorgeousness.
For Cassandra Carlson, I chose Emilia Clarke. She’s got Cassandra’s blend of sweetness/determination written all over her.
Nick Carlson, Cassandra’s older brother, was also a no-brainer. Chris Hemsworth. I could seriously look at him all day, and he is so Nick.
Brinley Collins, Cassandra’s cool and elegant best bud, was a bit more of a challenge to cast. I almost went with Blake Lively, but Maggie Grace won the part in the end.
Sam Claflin is spot on for Kurt Jordan. He has the perfect evil glint in his eye.
Finally, Malin Akerman was cast as the diabolical psycho Margo Reed. Can’t you just see it!
Favorite Male Characters in Fiction by Julia Harlow
We all love a solid alpha male character. A man who is dominant without dominating. Who’s confident and controlled. Witty and intelligent. Passionate, driven, composed. He must be comfortable with himself. And of course tall and physically fit. Oh, and very successful and a good listener. This is fiction, after all.
So here are my top 10 favorite male characters. If you haven’t met them, you should!
Jamie Frazer - Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
Gideon Cross - Bared to You by Sylvia Day
Braden Carmichael – On Dublin Street by Samantha Young
Ted Beaudine – Call Me Irresistible by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Cal Morrisey – Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie
Travis Maddox – Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
Kenny Traveler – Lady Be Good by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Phin Tucker – Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie
Gabriel Emerson – Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard
Christian Grey – Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James
I love romantic fiction. Any kind of romantic fiction, whether it be historical, contemporary, fantasy, erotic - you name it. What's not to love about a swoon-worthy hero and a spunky heroine plagued by all sorts of conflicts keeping them apart, until it all works out and they live happily ever after? For the most part.
My first book, Closed Set, was published in June 2014. I am currently working on my second book. It definitely has a very swoon-worthy hero and an unforgettable heroine. Stay tuned for more info!