A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Wednesday, May 7, 2014



Special Interests

by Emma Barry



Compared to love, politics is easy

Union organizer Millie Frank’s world isn’t filled with cocktails and nightclubs…until she’s turned into an unwitting minor celebrity. As if being part of a hostage situation wasn’t traumatizing enough, now her face is splashed across the news. But Millie’s got fresher wounds to nurse—like being shot down by the arrogant bad boy she stupidly hit on.

Parker Beckett will do whatever it takes to close a deal for the senate majority leader, including selling out union labor. Charming and smart on the surface, he’s also cynical and uncommitted—an asset on the Hill. But something about Millie has stuck with him and when negotiations bring her to his office, Parker breaks his own rules and asks her out.

Parker can’t understand how Millie has retained her idealism in a place like D.C. Millie can’t believe what Parker’s willing to sacrifice in order to pass a budget. But as they navigate their political differences, what grows between them looks a lot like a relationship…and maybe even a little like love.



The best part about having one of the most identifiable faces in the country, at least for the moment, was that you didn’t wait to put in an order. Millie Frank couldn’t remember when she’d had a bartender respond more quickly. Or when she’d received more smiles from strangers.

She straightened her dress in the mirror over the bar and fluffed her brown hair. She looked…fine. Her ensemble had Alyse’s stamp of approval, as did the smoky eye makeup, and what else was there, really? Looking or feeling like herself, perhaps, which she hadn’t in a week. Whatever herself even meant anymore.

She shoved a generous tip into the jar and turned on her heel, right into a be-pin-striped chest.

"Sorry!" She stepped back quickly, then clutched her glass with both hands, impressed she’d avoided spilling.

The guy she’d bumped into towered over her. She glanced up at him and half-grimaced, half-smiled in apology. It was an honest reaction, but good God, did it help cover her astonishment. He bore more than surpassing resemblance to the underwear model she had absolutely not been ogling in the window of H&M that afternoon. Except for the suit, of course. She assumed the suit covered a body as lovely as what was revealed: wavy brown hair, devastating dark eyes and absolutely perfect teeth.

He smiled and her knees buckled. He had to know the effect that might have on women and yet he did it anyway. Without warning, even. The jerk.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Emma Barry is a novelist and full-time mama and graduate student. When she’s not reading or writing, she loves hugs from her toddler twins, her husband’s cooking, her cat’s whiskers, and Earl Grey tea.

Twitter: @AuthorEmmaBarry

Website: authoremmabarry.com

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GKBIRP8

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20645656-special-interests

Special InterestsSpecial Interests by Emma Barry
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Special Interest by Emma Barry is a 2014 Carina Press publication. I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Millie Frank is Union organizer in Washington D.C. but has found herself in the spotlight due to a hostage situation she was involved in. Trying to get back into her normal routine and wishing the media would lose interest in her, Millie goes out with a friend and meets Parker Beckett. Parker is a workaholic trying to make budget for the senate. An instant attraction occurs between the opposites, but Parker turns Millie down humiliating her deeply. Now the two of them trade barbs and zing back and forth between love and hate. Can the cynical Parker and the idealist Millie manage to make a relation work?
Politics is always difficult when someone wants to help save programs and work for the best interest of other people and someone else is concerned about money. The author does a great job of explaining some of the issues Washington deals with and how the bottom line is what it's all about. Parker has made his entire his entire life about work. He skips meals or eats on the run, has no personal relationships and when Millie crashes into his life he realizes he has been missing out on the things in life that really matter. Millie on the other hand is confused by Parker's on/off mixed signals.
The strongest part of the book was the political angles and push/pull of politics and all the negotiations. The romance was a like an after thought sometimes and as a result the relationship became rushed as the author started to wrap things up. Of the two, Parker had more to overcome and finally began to slow down and enjoy living.
This one gets 3.5 stars.
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  1. fun excerpt. Sounds like a great story.

  2. Thank you for the excerpt, I enjoyed it.


  3. Sounds great! Thanks for posting!


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