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Promises We Make (Harlequin Kimani Romance\Platinum Brides) Mass Market Paperback – January 18, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Pamela Sadadi Yaye has a bachelor’s degree in Christian Education and her love for African-American fiction prompted her to pursue a career in writing romance. When she’s not working on her latest novel, this busy wife, mother and teacher is watching basketball, cooking or planning her next vacation. Pamela lives in Alberta, Canada with her gorgeous husband and adorable, but mischievous son and daughter.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

"Is it just me or do all the men up in here look like broke-down versions of Boris Kodjoe?"

Niveah Evans laughed out loud at her best friend's assessment of the male guests at the Ritz-Carlton's annual New Year's Eve bash. Tickets to the black tie event had set her back a hundred dollars, and as she glanced around the elaborately decorated ballroom, she wondered what all the hype was about. Champagne flowed from a gold fountain and the performers suspended from the ceiling were giving one hell of a show, but it was nothing Niveah hadn't seen before. As a creative director for the largest advertising company in the U.S., it was her job to be up on the latest trends, and she'd seen the act six months earlier in a Paris nightclub.

"I can't believe no one's asked us to dance," Roxi Gonzalez complained, wrinkling her nose as if she'd just gotten a whiff of an old shoe. "I wasted the entire morning getting plucked, waxed and shaved and no one in here gives a damn."

Jeanette Miller released a deep, pitiful sigh. "This is turning out to be the worst New Year's Eve on record. I should have stayed home and watched the ball drop in Times Square."

"You're right, this is pretty bad," Niveah conceded, reaching for her mai tai, "but at least your boss isn't bringing in some clown from head office to babysit you for the next few weeks. I single-handedly landed that Discreet Boutique account, and now Mr. Russo thinks I need help. How am I supposed to shine with another creative director breathing down my neck? I have half a mind to complain to—"

Her friends groaned.

"The next time you mention your job I'm out of here," Roxi threatened, leveling a finger at her. "I came down here to have a good time, not listen to you bitch about work."

Jeanette put down her wine flute. "Niveah, you know what your problem is? Your life has no balance. All you care about is impressing Mr. Russo and getting another raise."

"What are you talking about? I travel—"

"For work," Jeanette chirped.

"I entertain on a regular basis—"

"For work."

"And I take the last Friday of every month off to recharge."

"Yeah, but that's because Mr. Russo forces you to!"

It was times like this that Niveah wished she hadn't befriended Jeanette at the company picnic five years earlier. Within weeks of meeting, they were working out together, gossiping about their colleagues and planning the first of many Las Vegas shopping trips.

Intent on being heard, Jeanette raised her voice above the rock song playing. "Working sixty hours a week is prematurely aging you. I didn't want to say anything because you just celebrated your birthday, but you've lost your youth, your shine, that healthy glow I always envied."

"You're so busy clawing your way up the corporate ladder you don't realize that life is passing you by," Roxi continued. "You're working like a dog to forget what happened with—"

Niveah silenced her with a look. "Don't even think about mentioning that jerk's name. I've moved on, and I wish you guys would, too."

"We will, as soon as you start living again." Smiling sympathetically, Jeanette rested a hand on her best friend's shoulder. "You know what you need to do? Let your hair down. Live on the edge. Do something wild and spontaneous for once," she admonished.

"Ever since you started dating Tavares you've been obsessed with hooking me up," Niveah complained, running a hand through her naturally curly hair. She'd accomplished a lot in her thirty-four years, and contrary to what her girlfriends thought, she loved her life just the way it was. So what if she didn't have a husband, kids and a three-story house in the suburbs? She was successful and financially stable and that's all that mattered. "Quit badgering me, Jeanette. And for your information, I do tons of exciting things."

Roxi raised her eyebrows. "Really? Like what?"

"She's bluffing," Jeanette accused. "Niveah will do anything to stay in her boring little world, including lying about having an active social life."

"I have a lot of fun. Just last week I went rock climbing with some of the teens I mentor."

Roxi guffawed. "If that's what you call exciting, then you're worse off than I thought!"

"Niveah, you're never going to find true love if you keep hiding behind your attache case," Jeanette told her. "You need to take a page out of my book because once I quit stressing about work and started doing activities I enjoyed, I couldn't keep the men off me. And now I have Tavares, and my life is complete."

Roxi gave Jeanette a high five. "Me, too, girlfriend. It's just a matter of time before Cedrick pops the question, and once he does, I'll be all over the Saks Fifth Avenue bridal registry!"

"If you two are so blissfully in love," Niveah challenged, "then why are you at this party?"

"Keeping your rusty butt company!"

Jeanette and Roxi roared with laughter.

"Before the night's over, I'm going to find you someone to dance with. Someone like…" Jeanette's gaze panned the crowd and after several seconds, she squealed. Bouncing up and down on her seat like an unruly toddler high on sugar, she clapped her hands and nodded her head. "Check out the hottie at the end of the bar. He's a perfect ten!"

Niveah didn't bother looking up from her drink. Jeanette's idea of good-looking was a lanky gangbanger plastered in tattoos; but Niveah preferred studious, conservative types. Not a square, just someone with manners and class, who'd treat her with respect. But as her ex-fiancé had so aptly proven nine months ago, looks were deceiving.

"That man is beyond fine! I'd do him in a New York minute!"

Niveah's ears perked up. If Roxi thought the stranger was fine, then he was. Despite being divorced twice, she was in the market for husband number three, and could spot a good-looking guy a block away.

Straightening in her seat, Niveah peered around the cluster of model-esque clones obscuring her view of the bar. Jeanette yanked her to the left, pointed an acrylic fingernail directly ahead, and yelled, "He's the one in the dark designer suit."

Niveah's mouth fell open.

"I told you he was perfect."

And he was. Words couldn't describe how truly gorgeous the stranger was. Bald, buff brothers didn't usually catch Niveah's eye, but this man had it seriously going on. Immaculately groomed, with clear skin, and defined features, he had a one of a kind look that instantly made her wet. His gaze was hungry, almost predatory, and his sexy mouth was rimmed with a neat, trim goatee. The brother owned the room, and the hearts of all the females in attendance—including hers. Her body hummed, and suddenly the grand ballroom felt hotter than a furnace. An aura of mystery surrounded the stranger, making him even more appealing. Staring at him, so intently, was bound to make Niveah go cross-eyed, but she didn't have the strength to look away. She was drawn to him, overtaken by a blinding sexual hunger she'd never known.

"If I had a man like that at home, I'd never leave," Roxi quipped, fanning her rosy cheeks. "I think I'll just go over and say hello."

Niveah cut her eyes at Roxi. "What about Cedrick?"

"What about him? Until he puts a ring on it, I'm keeping my options wide open."

Jeanette gripped her girlfriend's forearm, preventing her from rising from her seat. "Sit your big butt down. I picked him out for Niveah, not you."

"Girl, please. Miss Thang can't handle all that man. He's six feet tall and over two hundred pounds. He'd probably snap her skinny body in two." Cackling like a witch on a broom, she adjusted the neckline of her outfit. Roxi used every opportunity to show off her boobs, and her zipper-front dress served up an eyeful. "I on the other hand, specialize in turning out jocks, and that cutie's exactly my type."

Angry about being dissed, Niveah shot her soon-to-be ex-friend a scathing look. "You think you know everything about me, Roxi, but you don't. I'm every bit as daring as you are. If not more." To prove it, she stopped a passing waiter, ordered a cognac, and instructed him to deliver it to the gentleman at the end of the bar.

"Very well, ma'am. Would you care to include a message?"

Niveah shielded her mouth with the back of her hand. She spoke only loud enough for the waiter to hear, and when he departed, she couldn't help but smile to herself.

"So you sent him a drink. Big friggin' deal. You're as straitlaced as they come, and—"

"Wanna bet?"

Roxi smirked. "I'd love to."

"Knock it off, you two," Jeanette ordered. "You sound like a couple of kids having a pissing contest on the schoolyard."

Roxi ignored her and addressed Niveah. "If I'm right about you being a Goody Two-Shoes, you'll have to hand over your new Gucci handbag. You know, the one I watched you drop a thousand dollars on at the mall yesterday."

"Okay, and I want your Oprah tickets."

Her face crumpled like a piece of paper. "B-b-but they're the tickets to her final show."

"Those are the terms. Deal or no deal?"

"You're on. That purse is going to look great with the dress I plan to wear to the show." Flashing a superior grin, she leaned forward in her chair, and rested her elbows on the table. "Did I tell you guys that Oprah will be interviewing her all-time favorite guests on the finale?"

"Only a million times," Jeanette grumbled.

"There are also rumors circulating that world-famous singers will be performing together. I can hardly wait! It's going to be…"

Having heard this before, Niveah glanced absently around the ballroom. It was no surprise that her eyes strayed to the bar. Her mouth dried. He was staring right at her. Guests blew noisemakers, and boisterous laughter filled the room, but Niveah could still hear her deafening heartbeat. It was beating in double-time, throbbing painfully in her ears.

Wearing a broad, megawatt smile, the handsome stranger lifted his tumbler in the air, tilted his head toward her and downed his glass in one smooth swig.

"Go over there and introduce yourself," Jeanette encouraged, brimming with excitement. "He's definitely interested in you, girl."

Roxi shook her head. "Miss Thang is too much of a lady to approach a guy. Attending a high siddity university made her all proper and whatnot. See, I believe in taking life by the horns, so if you'll excuse me, that hottie at the bar is calling my name."

"Then, you need to get a hearing aid, because he's checking out Niveah, not you!" Jeanette laughed at her own joke. "I know it's hard for you to believe, Roxi, but you can't have every man you want."

"Oh yes I can," she snapped, twirling her index finger around in the air, "and besides, Niveah wouldn't know the first thing to do with a brother like that."

Niveah gripped the stem of her cocktail glass to keep from shoving Roxi off her chair. They'd had a love-hate relationship ever since Jeanette introduced them, and it was at times like this that Niveah wondered why they were even friends. "We'll see about that."

Niveah downed the rest of her mai tai, pushed back her chair and stood. Her legs wobbled as she walked across the sleek hardwood floor. I can do this. I'm smart and sexy and I have a lot to offer. Repeating the words she'd once heard on an afterschool special didn't bolster her confidence. Niveah wished she had another drink, because as she approached the bar, she felt an intense bout of the nerves.

The stranger stood against the counter, holding his Blackberry, oblivious to her approach. As Niveah came up beside him, she tried to think of something clever to say. Anything besides the standard greeting. "I hope you're enjoying your cognac," she said, in her sultriest voice, "you strike me as the kind of man who likes a strong drink."

Damien Hunter glanced up from his cell phone and his eyes bulged out of his head like a cartoon character. Standing before him in a slinky champagne-colored dress was a caramel-skinned goddess. A woman he felt an instant, undeniable connection to.

Examining her gave Damien great pleasure, so he did a slow, thorough appraisal. He took in every detail of her face, committing each exquisite feature to memory. Her blinding white teeth drew his attention to the delicate curve of her lips. To the pretty, full rosebuds he could already feel around his—

Damien purged his thoughts. He was putting the cart before the horse. Conversation first, mind-blowing sex after.

Resting his arms against the counter, he continued his assessment. Loose, luscious curls grazed her shoulders, brushing lightly against her arms. Her mouth looked sweet, her hips were fine and he was itching to stroke her long caramel brown legs. She looked wholesome, like the kind of woman who baked bread and enjoyed playing with children, but there was nothing innocent about her sultry smile. It was provocative, tinged with lust and full of suggestion. In his profession, he mixed with a lot of attractive women, but no one had ever captured his attention like this sister with the bedroom eyes. Play it cool, man, the voice inside his head cautioned. She's just another crazy beautiful woman looking for a good time, and you're just the man to give it to her. "What's your name, beautiful?"

Niveah licked her lips. The sound of his voice, all deep and masculine, was enough to melt her panties right off. He oozed with confidence, pulsed with positive energy and smelled like expensive aftershave. "I'm Niveah. And you are?"

"Damien," he said smoothly. "I appreciate you buying me a drink, but now it's my turn to return the favor. What would you like?"

You, naked in my bed. The thought made a wave of giddiness sweep over her. Where had that come from ? she wondered. Niveah hadn't had sex in—hell, it had been so long she couldn't remember. That's why being in close proximity of this tall, dark and handsome man made her wet in all the right places. "Two cocktails are my limit, so I'll just have a ginger ale."

While he placed the order, Niveah checked out his profile. Jeanette was right about him being good-looking, but he was much, much more. On top of having a smooth-as-chocolate-pudding complexion, he had a straight nose, chiseled jaw and a chest that she was aching to lick, and stroke and caress. "Thank you," she said, taking the glass he offered. Electricity passed between them when their fingers touched, and it took a moment for Niveah to recover. "Tell me about yourself, Damien."

"I'm in town on business. What about you?"

Product Details

  • Series: Harlequin Kimani Romance\Platinum Brides (Book 224)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Harlequin Kimani (January 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0373861990
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373861996
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.6 x 6.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #571,894 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jackie Roberts on January 15, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Niveah Evans is a workaholic creative director for an advertising agency. Her friends Jeanette and Roxi thinks she needs to add a little spontaneity to her life. On a dare she decides to approach a man her friends spot at the bar.

Damien Hunter has an instant attraction and connection to Niveah. He invites her to his hotel room for one night of passion. But is one night enough for Damien?

It took me 2 days to read this book. The story was realistic, witty and charming. If you are a fan of Pamela Yaye, like me. You will definitely want to purchase her latest book "Promises We Make". Thanks Pamela for a great book.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Amari Howard on January 18, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Not only was this book amazing, it was fantastic. As a avid romance reader, this is one book that has captured and held my interest throughout the whole book so much so that I read this entire book in one sitting. Yaye creates a couple that is not only realistic but exciting and intense. I recommend this book to avid romance readers like myself not only because it is an amazing read but also because readers gain a connection with the characters including Niveah, Damien, Roxi and Jeanette. BUY THIS BOOK!It honestly is one of her greatest!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Michelle J. on March 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have to say that i agree with the reviewer who called this book boring!! Let me explain why i say this, first i think it started off with a bang i loved chapters 1 and 2. From chapter 3 on Ms. Yaye lost me. I read all the reviews and i don't understand why nobody seems to notice the fact that Niveah has some serious issues!! She treats her staff like crap she claims she loves her parents so much but she's clearly ashamed of them and she treats Damien like dirt under her shoe once she finds out she has to work with him. I couldn't stand her character and i really don't know why a man as fine and decent as Ms. Yaye wrote his character to be would put up with her and her crap!! He was clearly a good man and she was awful to him through the whole book minus the first 2 chapters. Her attitude was not understandable and it irriated me to no end!! I understand being career driven and all but the bottom line is Niveah was not a nice or pleasant person!! She is suppose to be this strong take no crap woman but she couldn't even stand up to her so called friend Roxi who constantly gave her a hard time and put her down and enjoyed doing it!! Yet the people who we're actually nice to her she was a total bitch to!! I could barely get through this book and doubt i will ever read another one of Ms. Yaye books again. Oh yeah Damien and the actual couple of times he got through to her and got her to act like a normal woman were the only reason why i gave it a 2 star rating and not a 1!! Sorry
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By marie28 on February 21, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I totally didnt like this book. I've never read a book by Yaye so I tried this one due to the high rarings and was extemely disappointed. From the beginning it didn't captivate me. I struggled to read the book and at one point almost gave up completely. It was just a terrible read and extremely boring. I don't think I will be buying another book by her unless its free.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 26, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have read so many of these romance books/stories that they all seem to run together, but I really loved this one! This was a pleasant surprise and a great book with a perfect story. This book is a jewel.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By JAZZYJ on January 19, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Niveah Evans is a creative director for an advertising agency who puts her work and job before anything else her idea of fun is staying home and watching TV or just chilling. Her friends Jeanette and Roxi feel she needs to get out and enjoy her life, she needs some excitement in it. Enter Damien Hunter who was at the bar at a New Year's eve party they were attending. On a dare from her friends she sends him a drink an then approaches him an instant attraction takes place especially after they have a dance. He invites her to his hotel room to see where things might lead, and it leads after some convincing on Damien's part to a night of passion and a morning of him finding hisself alone.

It just so happen's that these two end up competing for the same job, and it's on from there. There are alot of twist and turn's and a very enjoyable story. Pamela Yaye brings to light some intesting medical scenerio's and show's that there are good men out there who love's and care's about family above all else.
I also love that she brought up to date from the Hollington serie's what's going on with Terrence and Kyra.

I found this to be a very good and fast read. I recommend this book whole heartedly so enjoy. Cudos!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 12, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I must say I bought and read this book in one sitting, it was so good. They meet and fight the attraction they have for each other but they cant fight passion,
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By Red on May 11, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I will admit; I was not feeling Niveah at all. Granted she was career driven and financially sufficient but she did not know how to treat her subordinates, she had a superior attitude towards her co-workers and her parents. Damien made the story worth reading because he was a confident and patient man. He was patient enough to work at breaking down Niveah's defenses and show her the imporatance of relaxing, enjoying life and loving those people who are there for you. Eventually she came around; but it took the entire book for her to see the light. Damien was great and in my opinion, Niveah didn't deserve him; but the book emphasizes the fact that people do change. Trust me; I was so glad when Niveah got a clue and started treating people right.
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