Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I will spoil this one, because its too good not to! They are seriously a dream, the whole family is just amazing. I remember reading a book where the Montgomery and Taggert family come together through a marriage, I was elated. Anyway here comes Mac Taggert, he is a rich man, has a business where Karen works in.

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But lack of makeup only revealed perfect skin, high cheekbones, and eyes like dark emeralds. She was as dark as Karen was fair, half a foot shorter, and voluptuous. Remember that red dress you had, slit so high your tonsils were visible? But how you and Ray looked when you danced together was worth it! Those legs of yours had every man in the room drooling.

Every man in Denver was drooling! Except my Charlie, of course, he never looked. She was so hugely pregnant she could hardly reach the kettle. A man who is alive. Ray and I were more than just married, we were partners.

We were equals; we shared everything. Ray asked my opinion about everything, from the business to the color of his socks. He made me feel useful. Can you understand that? The minute you start telling him your opinions, he asks the waiter to give him the check.

If you are bound and determined to commit suttee for Ray, so be it. Turning away from the window, Karen laughed.

How is that beautiful man? And what did they give you? A hand-crocheted shawl, or maybe a rocking chair and a couple of cats? Just the usual things. Actually, they chipped in together and got me a very nice gift. You know, one of those string things that goes around your neck.

With little, ah, cats on the clasp. The combined age of those women must be three hundred years. I added it up one day. You have to get out of there. Karen gave her sister-in-law a look of innocence. You are much too clever to throw away everything. Eight years of managing a hardware store means nothing to a personnel director. Only that piece of paper saying I sat through years of boring classes means anything.

Everything in that office, from every department, goes across my desk. Please, Ann. Now tell me everything. We all figure he was buying her off. Drying her tears with emeralds, so to speak. He really is. In the event of a divorce, even the clothing he bought her would remain with him. I swear he instructs personnel to hire them by the length of their legs. He surrounds himself with beautiful women executives. He needs no other person in life. How are you planning to get a baby if you run from every man who looks at you?

Help me. Just in case. You know. Must be something I ate. But anyway, when you mentioned babies, it made me want to hear all of it. Really nothing. We both thought we had all the time in the world. I seem to be perfectly healthy. Put an ad in the paper for a donor? Apply box three-five-six. He beats a turkey baster any day.

Karen continued to smile. Are you all right? This hurts! Tearing off a paper towel from the dispenser on the restroom wall, she dabbed at the tears, then saw that her eyes were red. Frowning, Ann had taken her baby from her sister-in-law. So now Karen was at the office and she was nearly overpowered with a sense of longing for a home and family. Making another attempt to mop up her face, she heard voices at the door, and without thinking, she scurried into an open stall and locked the door behind her.

She did not want anyone to see her. Today was the office Christmas party and everyone was in high good spirits. Between the promise of limitless free food and drink this afternoon and a generous bonus received from Montgomery-Taggert Enterprises this morning, the whole office was a cauldron of merriment.

Karen knew she was trapped inside the stall, for if she tried to leave the restroom, Loretta would catch her and badger her into hearing more about the wonders of the saintly M. Her sentiments exactly. Standing against the wall, Karen put her head back and wanted to cry out in frustration.

Did Loretta never talk about anything but the Great Jilt? Taggert was madly, insanely in love with a young woman named Elaine Wentlow. He wanted his own home, his own place of security. Now Loretta was on to the magnificence of the wedding that Taggert had alone planned and paid for.

What was her reason? It was her belief that Taggert waited until the night before or the day of the wedding to present his bride with one of his loathsome prenuptial agreements, letting her know just what he thought of her. That was the job of his personal secretary. But beautiful Miss Gresham was much too important to actually feed data into a computer terminal, so she gave the work to the person who had been with the company the longest: Miss Johnson. But then Miss Johnson was past seventy and too rickety to do a lot of typing.

This morning, minutes after the bonuses had been handed out, a tall, gorgeous redhead had stormed into the offices with a ring box in her trembling hand. Except Karen. Karen would remain at her desk, forcing herself to keep her opinions to herself. Now Loretta gave a sigh that made the stall door rattle against its lock. Since Loretta had told every female in the office all about the divine Mr. McAllister Taggert. Even if she hated him, she should have thought of the wedding guests.

A moment later, Loretta gave a sigh that had to have come straight from her heart. Yes, I like that very much. Now we must go. After washing her hands, she went to the towel holder and there she saw what the women had just been talking about.

So much better, in fact, that she allowed herself to be pulled into the elevator by fellow employees to go upstairs to the huge Taggert Christmas party. One whole floor of the building owned by the Taggerts had been set aside for conferences and meetings.

Instead of being divided into offices of more or less equal space, the floor had been arranged as though it were a sumptuously, if rather oddly, decorated house. There was a room with tatami mats, shoji screens, and jade objects that was used for Japanese clients.

Colefax and Fowler had made an English room that looked like something from Chatsworth. For clients with a scholarly bent there was a library with several thousand books in handsome pecan-wood cases. There was a kitchen for the resident chef and a kitchen for clients who liked to rustle up their own grub. A Santa Fe room dripped beaded moccasins and leather shirts with horsehair tassels.

And there was a big, empty room that could be filled with whatever was needed for the moment, such as an enormous Christmas tree bearing what looked to be half a ton of white and silver ornaments. This tree would be a source of discussion for weeks to come. Personally, Karen liked the tree in the day-care center better.

It was never more than four feet tall so the children could reach most of it, and it was covered with things the children of the employees had made, such as paper chains and popcorn strings. For a moment they tried to get Karen to go with them, but when they realized who she was, they backed off.


Just Curious

But lack of makeup only revealed perfect skin, high cheekbones, and eyes like dark emeralds. She was as dark as Karen was fair, half a foot shorter, and voluptuous. Remember that red dress you had, slit so high your tonsils were visible? But how you and Ray looked when you danced together was worth it!


More Books by Jude Deveraux

Just Curious 6 Jude Deveraux An hour later, after a quick breakfast, she and Mac were walking to the rental car, and on the lawn were the bridegroom and other men playing ball. Steve shouted to Mac, asking him to come play with them. Feeling quite flattered, Karen smiled brilliantly at all the young men playing touch football and she smiled even more brightly when she saw that Mac was frowning. Looking up at him, she saw that male shrug that meant that she was in charge. I called him my elephant.


Jude Deveraux



Simple Gifts: Just Curious / Miracles / Change of Heart / Double Exposure


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