Working with your childhood nemesis to save a small Amish town’s candy shop might just make for the sweetest love story in Pine Creek Matchmaker by Amity Hope. To satiate that sweet tooth, we have an exclusive excerpt! Find out where to pre-order Pine Creek Matchmaker here.
“To be honest, I don’t have a single fond memory of you,” she announced, then pressed a hand over her mouth as if appalled the words had slipped out.
Instead of feeling offended, Caleb simply smirked and said, “Can’t say I remember you too fondly either.” He said the words without malice and hoped they weren’t too harsh.
“Me?” Sadie scoffed. “You were the one who was wretched when we were growing up.”
Caleb laughed at that, though the words did sting just a little. “How so?”
“Do you really need to ask?”
He gripped the steering wheel and shot her a look that implied he sure did. She was the one who had been a pain in his backside his whole childhood.
She let out an indignant huff.
“When I won the spelling bee in third grade, I returned to my chair only to drop down on a whoopie cushion you had placed there. The entire class laughed at me.”
“I was only ten,” Caleb said, feeling slightly chagrined. “I didn’t have good manners then.”
“Then?” Sadie growled. “When I was in sixth grade, you put a chocolate bar on my seat. It was hot in the schoolhouse, so it had melted. When I sat on it, it looked like”—she waved her hands in the air, scowling—“you know.”
He winced, because he did know. At the time he really had thought it would be funny. But after the fact, after seeing how truly mortified Sadie had been, he’d felt awful. He was two years older than Sadie and Grace, and really, he’d been old enough to know better. It was no surprise that Grace had taken matters into her own hands. She’d whopped him good alongside the head—never mind the peaceful, forgiving Amish way—she’d been livid, then had made sure everyone knew it had been a cruelly placed chocolate bar. His mamm had made him rise before dawn and scrub the already spotless kitchen floor every day for a week.
“You were no treasure to be around either,” he countered. “You were always tattling. Or threatening to tattle.” In a voice meant to mimic he said, “I’m going to tell your mamm. I’m going to tell the teacher. I’m going to tell your daed.”
“I did not,” Sadie exclaimed.
He laughed wryly. “Oh, for sure you did.”
She scowled at him.
He flashed her a knowing grin. “You know what I think? I think you were always in my business because you had a crush on me. I think you wanted me to notice you. It’s common, you know, having a crush on your best friend’s brother.”
She made a strangled sound, and he wasn’t sure if it was a sound of horror or if the very thought made her ill. The way her face scrunched in disgust didn’t boost his ego any. He’d been teasing, of course he had been, but it bothered him a bit that Sadie looked so utterly appalled by the idea.
He might not be a prize, but was he really that bad?
“I absolutely did not, do not, and never will have a crush on you,” she said firmly.
Love can lead anyone to redemption—in this unforgettable and heartwarming Pine Creek romance from author Amity Hope…
After leaving Pine Creek—along with his family and the rest of their Amish community—four years ago, Caleb Weaver has returned. He’s come back to help his parents with their struggling candy shop, and everyone in their small town is buzzing with the news. But no sooner does he return than he’s flagged down by the last person he wanted to see…with a helpless, abandoned kitten.
Sadie Ziegler will do almost anything to save an animal, including accepting a ride from her best friend’s older brother, her childhood nemesis. Only, the troublesome boy she remembers has been replaced by a serious, kind, and hardworking man. But not everyone is ready to accept someone who’s been shunned…
Now Sadie and Caleb find themselves organizing the town’s community fundraiser, working together to help his family, and even matchmaking along the way. For the first time, redemption—and a chance at love—seems almost within reach. But there’s no escaping the secret that drove Caleb from Pine Creek…
Amity lives in beautiful northern Minnesota with her two sons, two cats and their Rottweiler. She has a degree in elementary education and worked in that field for ten years before deciding to chase her dream. Her debut novel, Twisted, was listed by Amazon as a Top 100 Kids & Teens Kindle Book of 2012. If she’s not writing, or spending time with her boys, she’s most likely reading.