No One’s Angel by Kelly Walker
Tess used to spend more hours than she’d care to admit playing her favorite computer game, using the nickname Angel. She could pretend her life was different, and she could pretend Arion was just a friend. But a girl needs more to keep her warm at night than pixels and she traded her virtual heaven for a real life hell. Now she’s on the run from a past she won’t talk about, and the only place she has to go is the doorstep of the friend she’s never actually met.
When Angel disappeared from their nightly games, it nearly destroyed Arion. He threw himself into work and women, but he can’t help knowing the one night stands will never compare to the angel who haunts his dreams. At first, when she shows up soaking wet and scared-shitless on his doorstep, he thinks his prayers have been answered.
But the more Arion tries to keep Angel close, the more her fear drives her away. If they are ever going to have a chance for a future, they’ll first have to deal with the past that hasn’t forgotten her any more than she’s forgotten it, and Arion will have to learn how to let her go.
No One’s Angel is a New Adult(NA) Contemporary Romance about a girl learning to fight back, and a boy learning how to let go. It is recommended for mature audiences only due to language and sexual content. (HEA with no cliffhanger.)
My bed smells like a girl, and that’s just wrong. Not that I don’t like girls, I just sure as hell don’t like them in my bed. That’s one of my rules, and it’s one I haven’t broken—at least I don’t think I have. So why does my bed smell like sunflowers and honey?
One of the things I love best about my bedroom, is that it doesn’t have any windows, so I don’t get woken up by too much sun at some ungodly hour. The downside is, I have no freaking idea what time it is. A glance at the bedside stand tells me a lot more than the time. I no longer care that it’s only eight and I rarely crawl out from beneath the covers before ten. Angel. She should be here, but all that’s left is her scent.
Not again, not again. I don’t know if it’s a prayer, a plea, or a chant, if it somehow makes her not be gone I’ll take it. I can’t lose her again. Last time hurt too damn much.
Stop panicking, I tell myself as I panic even more. The fucking covers want to tangle around my legs as I extract myself from the bed, stumbling toward the door. Pure momentum carries me through it and the door slams too hard against the wall as I burst free of the dark bedroom.
How could she do this to me? How could she leave again without even a goodbye. “Fuck!” I swear out loud. “Fuck, fuck, fuck!” I don’t even know where she would have gone. Does she know anyone in Philly but me? That stops me for a minute. Is it possible she came all the way here to see me? Then why the hell would she leave so soon, without telling me why she’s come? I don’t understand anything other than misery and a sense of smothering grief that what I want—the only thing I want—just slipped through my fingers. Again. Fuck.
“What the fuck Angel!” I scream, not caring that they might hear me all the way down in the bar. No one will be in this early but the cleaning crew, anyway. As if I give a shit.
The kitchen is untouched, but her clothes are gone from beside the fireplace. I need to just accept that she’s gone again. People are counting on me to keep it together. Falling apart like the last time she left isn’t an option. Chelsea is going to be pissed. I’d finally managed to pull my crap together, and now this.
No girls in your home, no girls in your heart. That’s the rule, but I’d never considered Angel just a girl. A mistake I’d better fix fast. This time, I’m not going to let myself pine over her. Good riddance. I don’t need her anyway, not anymore. Not ever again.
The stool she sat on at the kitchen island is ajar and I kick it back into place a little too forcefully. I’m not satisfied until it is perfectly aligned and orderly, as if I could erase the chaos she’s brought over me if I just concentrate hard enough.
I can’t sit here at home, surrounded by her absence but I can’t go out like this, either. I’m dirty from the hours at the bar last night, and a steamy shower might do me some good.
For one brief moment, the world stops turning as I open the door and step into the bathroom. It occurs to me that the door shouldn’t have been closed about two seconds before I spot Angel huddled in the far corner, with an iron toilet paper stand clutched beneath her white knuckles. A damp towel is wrapped around her, tucked between her arms and her chest. This is the second time in as many days I’ve come through a doorway to find her soaking wet in all of the wrong ways.
Even as her shoulders tremble, her eyes burn with determination. That’s the Angel I know. A fighter who won’t take crap from anyone. I don’t know what’s happened to her, but right now I know without a doubt she isn’t broken, maybe just a little bent. Somehow, I’ll fix this.
Q: Romance readers have a lot of choices these days. What makes No One’s Angel stand out in the crowd so to speak?
A: No One’s Angel touches on several realistic themes that readers may identify with. Online relationships are becoming more and more popular, but how much do we know about someone we’ve never met?
It also tastefully explores domestic abuse and something that isn’t discussed often enough: just because a woman is dating a man, that doesn’t mean she can’t say no.
Arion is a loveable, intense hero with a bit of a bad-boy streak. That scares Angel, despite the chemistry between them. She recognizes his possessive tenancies and she doesn’t want to be hurt again.
Q: We like to include our favorite quote in our reviews of the books we read. What is your favorite quote from No One’s Angel?
A: My favorite quote from No One’s Angel is:
“We all have scars Angel, just because you can’t see them, doesn’t mean they aren’t there.”
If you had to choose one person to trust with a terrifying secret, who would it be?