Blog Tour + Author Interview, Review & Giveaway: Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson

I’m so excited to be a part of the blog tour for Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson! I have an interview with Megan on the blog today, as well as my review and a fantastic tour giveaway!

Author Interview: Megan Erickson

What was your favorite part about writing Dirty Deeds?

I loved writing the scenes where I got to have the whole crew together. I loved writing the girls’ night out and backyard barbecue scenes.

What made you decide on writing a hot British businessman as the hero for Alex?

You know, I wanted someone not like her in any way. I didn’t want her to fall for another mechanic. I wanted to get her out of her comfort zone so she could see what she had to offer.

What makes Alex and Spencer different from your previous main characters?

They are both really honest. I think I liked that the most. They were upfront with each other every step of the way.

Which book was your favorite to write in the Mechanics of Love series?

DIRTY TALK. Brent was a really easy character for me to write. I loved being in his head.

Will we be getting a story about Davis? Or Delilah? I love their characters!

I’m not ruling it out! And thank you, I love them too!

What are you currently working on?

Currently, I’m finishing up the fourth book in my Gamers series with Entangled Brazen. And I have a bunch of side projects I’m sorting out. I’m excited for 2016.

Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson

Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson
Series: Mechanics of Love #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: December 8th 2015
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Alex Dawn is saying no to men. No to bad relationships, disappointments, and smooth-talkers. Focusing on her family and her job at Payton and Sons Automotive keeps her mind occupied and her heart content. She doesn’t really miss a man’s touch, until one night, one shows up with the body of a god and a voice from her dirtiest dreams.

L.M. Spencer is only in Tory, Maryland, to scope out the town as a possible site for one of his company’s hotels. The British businessman didn’t expect his car to break down or to find the hottest little American he’s ever seen holding a tire iron, piercing him with bright blue eyes.

They agree to one hot night, one dirty deed to burn out the chemistry between them. But from their first kiss, Alex can’t stop saying yes to this man. And when Spencer’s company threatens everything she cares about, they must make the choice to stand together or apart.

Buy Links:
Amazon • HarperCollins • B&N • iTunes • Google Play

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Megan Erickson knows how to write contemporary romance! The Mechanics of Love series is the first I’ve read by her, and it won’t be the last. I’ve enjoyed each one of the books in the series immensely – Dirty Talk is still my favorite, but Dirty Deeds, the third and latest book, is one that definitely lived up to my expectations. It’s a book full of heart and humor, with touching characters that can’t help but endear themselves to your heart.

I’d been so excited about Alex’s story since Dirty Talk – as a female mechanic who’s sworn off men, she’s a memorable character. Her last relationship almost ruined her family, so when she and her sister and niece got away from her abusive ex, she was determined not to let any man in. She gives off this tough, sassy, badass persona, but deep down, she’s also a woman who gives her whole heart to those she loves. She may have given her heart to someone who abused it in the past, but ever since she’s met the Paytons, she’s opened up once again. But the one who really breaks down her walls is a one-night-stand she never expects to see again.

Spencer’s eyes were wild as he took her in. “I’m the luckiest man in the world to be here right now.”
Her heart ached, because they would be only this, a screw in a bed, a fuck against a wall. Quick, dirty deeds that would never have a future. Oh well, she’d make the most of it.

Though the past two books in the series have been about some HOT mechanics, I have to say that this one British businessman was definitely able to keep up with the previous heroes. Spencer was only supposed to be Tory for a little while for his job, so his one night – the hottest night of his life – with Alex was only supposed to be just that. But when his job forces him to go back to Tory and see Alex again and again, Spencer can’t help wanting her more and more… except that his stay in Tory is once again only temporary.

“…you love to love, Alex. And you love to be loved. And you deserve it. You deserve it all.”

I adored Alex and Spencer together. The two of them are the kind of characters who have walls around their hearts, and I loved seeing the two of them break down their walls and let in love. They make such a great couple, and the chemistry between this is seriously hot. If you’re a fan of the series, you definitely don’t want to miss Dirty Deeds.

I’m desperately hoping there will be more in this series, especially a book about Davis or Delilah (or the both of them together). I seriously can’t get enough of all of these characters! And the Paytons, I just love them all so much, especially Brent. All of their interactions with each other leave me with a smile on my face. If you love your romances with the perfect balance of humor and sweet, touching moments, then you definitely need to get your hands on this series!

4 hearts
lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.

Reading Order: Mechanics of Love series

Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson

#1 ~ Dirty Thoughts: My Review • EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#2 ~ Dirty Talk: My Review • Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads
#3 ~ Dirty Deeds: EbookPaperback • Goodreads

about the author button

Megan EricksonMegan Erickson grew up in a family that averages 5’5” on a good day and started writing to create characters who could reach the top kitchen shelf.

She’s got a couple of tattoos, has a thing for gladiators and has been called a crazy cat lady. After working as a journalist for years, she decided she liked creating her own endings better and switched back to fiction.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids and two cats. And no, she still can’t reach the stupid top shelf.

Website • Twitter • Facebook • Goodreads

Praise for MEGAN ERICKSON:

“A super sweet, extra sexy second chance romance that will have you laughing out loud and needing a minute to cool off. Dirty Thoughts is right!”
— Jay Crownover, New York Times bestselling author

“Megan Erickson ratchets up the romance and sizzle in her sexy new series. The Mechanics of Love will rev readers’ hearts.”
— Jennifer Ryan, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author

“Megan Erickson writes hot, hot, HOT stories packed with emotion and humor. You’re going to want to read everything she’s ever written!”
— Sophie Jordan, USA Today bestselling author

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$25 gift card to e-book retailer of winner’s choice

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Blog Tour + Release Day Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson

Dirty Talk Tour Banner

I’m so excited to be a part of the blog tour for Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson! Check out my review for the book below, as well as the first chapter and a giveaway!

Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson

Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson
Series: Mechanics of Love #2 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: September 15th 2015
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When the one you shouldn’t want is the one you can’t resist…

Brent Payton works hard, plays hard, and has earned his ladies’ man reputation. But he’s more than just a good time, even though no one seems to see it. Until a gorgeous brunette with knockout curves and big, thoughtful eyes walks into his family’s garage and makes Brent want more.

Ivy Dawn and her sister are done with men, all of them. They’ve uprooted their lives too many times on account of the opposite sex, but that’s over now. The plan seems easy until a sexy, dirty-talking mechanic bursts in Ivy’s life and shakes everything up.

Brent can’t resist the one person who sees past his devil-may-care façade, and Ivy finds it harder and harder to deny how happy he makes her. But she has secrets of her own and when the truth comes out, she must decide if she’ll run again or if she’ll take a chance on forever.

Buy Links:
Amazon • HarperCollins • B&N • iTunes • Google Play

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Megan Erickson’s Dirty Talk is perfect. Absolutely perfect. I loved everything about this book, and have no complaints, honestly. It’s a wonderful romance between a single mother and one sexy, endearing mechanic. I had high hopes for Dirty Talk after highly enjoying Dirty Thoughts, and Megan Erickson went above and beyond what I expected for Brent’s book. If you love contemporary romances, then you absolutely MUST read this book!

Brent Payton is the middle brother, the easy-going, funny one, the one no one takes seriously. He’s a playboy who has always had no trouble with the ladies… until Ivy Dawn enters his garage and his life. Brent is stunned by this incredible, headstrong single mother, and the more he sees her, the more he can’t get her out of his mind or his heart.

He would have been perfectly happy if women in the past had said he wasn’t a guy to take seriously. Because sometimes, he liked being the joke. He liked no strings and complications.
But with Ivy, he wanted the strings and the complications, and he didn’t know why. He just fucking did.

Ivy made a pact with her sister to swear off all men, after the rough life their little family had been through thanks to the opposite sex. They’re making a fresh start in Tory, and Ivy is determined to finally make a home and a life for her family. But Ivy’s vow isn’t quite holding up after meeting Brent. She sees right through his light-hearted exterior to the vulnerable, kind-hearted, dependable man no one ever notices, so how can help but fall for this wonderful man?

I loved how perfect Ivy and Brent are for each other – they see right into each other’s hearts, and they respect and appreciate the other so much. Ivy is at first wary of Brent’s intentions, but when Brent is determined to win the heart of the woman who’s stolen his own? I. Died. Protective, funny, charming, and with a wicked dirty mouth, Brent seriously became my new favorite hero. I fell so freaking hard for this man when he sets out to prove just how serious he is about Ivy and her daughter!

He wanted . . . Fuck, he wanted everything. To be inside of her, to be against her, to consume her.

And did I mention how HOT this book is!? As sweet as Brent is, he can also be dirty when he wants to, and holy hell, he was burning up the pages with his wicked mouth! *Grins* I loved it!

Dirty Talk is the perfect combination of sweet, sexy, and funny. I couldn’t help but be charmed by the romance and the characters, including all the supporting ones. This was such an endearing read, with wonderful characters I fell madly in love with. This is Megan Erickson’s best book yet, and I highly recommend it for fans of sweet, light-hearted romances!

5 hearts
lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.

Now here’s chapter one from Dirty Talk! ❤

excerpt button

Brent Payton wanted some decent music while he was working.

Not this pop-rock crap the radio had been playing but real rock ’n’ roll. Hell, he’d take George Thurgood right about now. Some “Bad to the Bone”? Hells to the yeah. That was better than a cup of coffee, which he could really use this Monday morning.

He’d volunteered to spring for an iPod and a docking station so he could play his own music, but his technology-inept father had acted like Brent wanted to buy a spaceship.

So that was out.

“Brent,” Cal’s voice called from the other bay of their garage at Payton Automotive.

“Yeah?”

“What’s this shit on the radio?” his older brother asked. “Turn it down before my ears bleed.”

Brent snorted. Cal was grumpy on a normal basis. But now that he’d quit smoking and wore a nicotine patch, he was even more insufferable. So Brent didn’t argue and turned down the music.

A truck rumbled into the parking lot, and Brent turned around, squinting to see who it was.

Alex Dawn, the new employee they’d hired a week ago, strolled into the garage, a bandana wrapped around her head, wearing baggy jeans and a tight T-shirt. She held a banana in one hand.

Brent grinned and walked over to where she stood outside the door to the office, looking over the schedule for the day. She peeled her banana and took a bite. He leaned in and inhaled deeply. “I love the smell of estrogen in the morning.”

Her lips twitched only slightly before she turned around and socked him in the bicep, hard. The woman could hit.

He howled dramatically and clutched his arm, swinging it limply from the elbow. “I’m injured! I can’t work!”

While Alex gazed at him, one eyebrow raised in amusement, he forgot about his injury, grabbed her banana, and bit off half of it.

“You asshole! That’s my breakfast!” Alex smacked him in the stomach, and he started laughing, nearly choking on the banana. “I’m so stealing the Snickers you keep hidden in the office.”

He straightened in shock. “You wouldn’t.”

She was smug, the witch. “I would.”

“That’s war, woman.”

She took the rest of the banana out of the peel and then tossed it so it landed on his shoulder. “Then don’t mess with my banana.”

“That’s some grade-D dirty talk,” he said, picking the peel off of his shoulder and throwing it in the trash can.

“Will you two quit it and get to work?” his dad, Jack, hollered, sticking his head out of the office door. “It’s like you’re related.”

Brent shrugged and walked over to the minivan to continue rotating its tires. Alex smirked at him from her bay. Brent winked back.

Working with Alex had been rocky at first. She had a chip on her shoulder—which she refused talk about—and Brent really enjoyed trying to knock it off, which only led to their sniping at each other. But when some asshole customer gave her a hard time because she was a woman, and she told him to shove it—Payton and Sons Automotive didn’t really have that customer-is-always-right policy—Brent developed a newfound respect for her. When Brent backed her up in front of said asshole, she began giving him some respect in return. And so they’d fallen into this brother-sister type relationship that was actually kinda fun. Brent didn’t really have friendships with women and especially not women he’d never fucked.

And the thing about Alex was . . . he didn’t want to fuck her. It wasn’t because she wasn’t hot, because she was. But the chemistry between them was . . . lacking. Which surprised Brent. Because he was like hydrogen; he reacted with everyone.

Brent worked quietly for the rest of the morning, singing to himself when decent music came on, taking care of the minivan before moving on to the next job.

He was draining oil from an old Toyota when he heard voices from the front of the garage. He spotted Dick Carmichael talking to Alex. She pointed toward the back room, where Cal had disappeared. The Carmichaels had been coming to the shop since before Brent had started working there. Dick was a retired accountant, and his wife still cut hair in an add-on at their house.

“Can I help you, Dick?” Brent asked as he walked closer.

The man turned to him. “Hey, Brent. Uh, no, that’s fine. I’ll just wait for Cal.”

“Oh, well if you need—”

Dick waved him on. “It’s fine. You can get back to work. I’m sure you want to break for lunch soon.” He patted him on the shoulder, like he was a kid, and chuckled. “Your dad always says that’s your favorite part of the day.”

Brent tamped down the irritation. First, whatever Cal could help him with, Brent could too. Second, yeah, Brent liked eating a hell of a lot, but that didn’t mean he didn’t do his job.

So he nodded and walked back to the Toyota. He didn’t look up when he heard Cal return, when Dick spoke with Cal about some work he wanted to do to his car—work that Brent would probably be assigned to, but he wasn’t Cal, the responsible one.

Nor was he Max, their younger brother, the first of them all to become a college graduate.

Brent was the middle brother, the joker, the comic relief. The irresponsible one.

Never mind that he’d been working at this shop since he was sixteen. Never mind that he could do every job, inside and out, and fast as fuck.

Never mind that he could be counted on, even though no one treated him like that.

A pain registered in his wrist, and he glanced down at the veins and tendons straining against the skin in his arm, where he had a death grip on a wrench.

He loosened his fist and dropped the tool on the bench.

This wallowing shit had to stop.

This was his life. He was happy (mostly) and free (no ball and chain, no way), and so what if everyone thought he was a joke? He was good at that role, so the typecasting fit.

“Why so glum, sugar plum?” Alex said from beside him as she peered up into his face.

He twisted his lips into a smirk and propped a hip on the counter, crossing his arms over his chest. “I knew you had a crush on me, sweet cheeks.”

She narrowed her eyes, lips pursed to hide a smile. “Not even in your dreams.”

He sighed dramatically. “You’re just like all the ladies. Wanna piece of Brent. There’s enough to go around, Alex; no need to butter me up with sweet nicknames—”

A throat cleared. And Brent looked over to see a woman standing beside them, one hand on her hip, the other dangling at her side, holding a paper bag. Her dark eyebrows were raised, full red lips pursed.

And Brent blinked, hoping this wasn’t a mirage.

Tory, Maryland, wasn’t big, and he’d made it his mission to know every available female in the town limits and about a ten-mile radius outside of that.

This woman? He’d never seen her. He’d surely remember if he had.

Gorgeous. Long hair so dark brown it was almost black. Perfect face. It was September and still warm, so she wore a tight striped sundress that ended mid-thigh. She was tiny, probably over a foot smaller than he was. Fuck, the things that little body made him dream about. He wondered if she did yoga. Tiny and limber was his kryptonite.

Narrow waist, round hips, big tits.

No ring.

Bingo.

He smiled. Sure, she was probably a customer, but this wouldn’t be the first time he’d managed to use the garage to his advantage. Usually, he just had to toss around a tire or two, rev an engine, whatever, and they were more than eager to hand over a phone number and address. No one thought he was a consummate professional anyway, so why bother trying to be one?

He leaned his ass against the counter, crossing his arms over his chest. “Can I help you?”

She blinked, long lashes fluttering over her big blue eyes. “Can you help me?”

“Yeah, we’re full service here.” He resisted winking. That was kinda sleazy.

Her eyes widened for a fraction of a second before they shifted to Alex at his side and then back to him. Her eyes darkened for a minute, her tongue peeked out between those red lips, and then she straightened. “No, you can’t help me.”

He leaned forward. “Really? You sure?”

“Positive.”

“Like, how positive?

“I’m one hundred percent positive that I do not need help from you, Brent Payton.”

That made him pause. She knew his name. He knew he’d never met her, so that could only mean she’d heard about him somehow, and by the look on her face, it was nothing good.

Well, shit.

He opened his mouth, not sure what to say but hoping it would come to him, when Alex began cracking up next to him, slapping her thighs and snorting.

Brent glared at her. “And what’s your problem?”

Alex stepped forward, threw her arm around the shoulder of the woman in front of them, and smiled ear to ear. “Brent, meet my sister, Ivy. Ivy, thanks for making me proud.”

They were both smiling now, that same full-lipped, white-teethed smile. He surveyed Alex’s face and then Ivy’s, and holy fuck—how did he not notice this right away? They almost looked like twins.

And the sisters were looking at him now, wearing matching smug grins—and wasn’t that a total cock-block? He pointed at Alex. “What did you tell her about me?”

“That the day I interviewed, you asked me to re-create a Whitesnake music video on the hood of a car.”

He threw up his hands. “Can you let that go? You weren’t even my first choice. I wanted Cal’s girlfriend to do it.”

“Because that’s more appropriate,” Alex said drily.

“Excuse me for trying to liven it up around here.”

Ivy turned to her sister, so he got a better glimpse of those thighs he might sell his soul to touch. She held up the paper bag. “I brought lunch; hope that’s okay.”

“Of course it is,” Alex said. “Thanks a lot, since someone stole my breakfast.” She narrowed her eyes at Brent. Ivy turned to him slowly in disbelief, like she couldn’t believe he was that evil.

Brent had made a lot of bad first impressions in his life. A dad of one of his high school girlfriend’s had seen Brent’s bare ass, while Brent was lying on top of his daughter, before the dad ever saw Brent’s face. That had not gone over well. And yet this impression might be even worse.

Because he didn’t care about what that girl’s dad thought of him. Not really.

And he didn’t want to care about what Ivy thought of him, but, dammit, he did. It bothered the hell out of him that she’d written him off before even meeting him. Did Alex tell her any of his good qualities? Like . . . Brent wracked his brain for good qualities.

By the time he thought of one, the girls had already disappeared to the back room for lunch.

***

“Do you think we hurt his feelings?” Ivy picked at a stray piece of lettuce hanging out of her sandwich.

She didn’t meet her sister’s eyes, not even when Alex started making choking sounds across from her at the small table in the back of Payton and Sons Automotive.

“E-excuse me?” Alex stuttered.

Ivy bit her lip and lifted her gaze to her sister’s. Alex had talked a lot about Brent, and while there was an underlying platonic affection to her words, most of her talk was complaining about how much of a pain in her ass he was. Maybe Alex hadn’t been looking at Brent close enough during their conversation out in the garage, but Ivy had been. She’d noticed the flash of frustration over his face when they’d shut him down.

What made her pause was that it seemed like frustration directed at himself, not at her.

Crap. Ivy dipped her gaze back to her sandwich. This would not do. She and Alex had basically stamped a big red X over all dicks—literal and figurative—for a good long time. They’d already moved twice to get away from men who had ruined their lives. Tory was supposed to be where they settled in, got their lives straight, and raised Violet.

Ivy’s defense mechanism was to immediately be cold to Brent. She could have gotten bees with honey, but she didn’t want bees. Or honey. Or whatever. So she was all stinger.

She and Alex didn’t need men. The two of them and Violet would be just fine.

And yet at this moment, Ivy couldn’t stop thinking about Brent. Alex hadn’t warned her that he looked . . . like that. Like six-feet, two-inches of hotness straight out of a Mechanics of Your Dreams calendar. Jesus. That dark hair, those full lips that smirked, those slate eyes that did nothing to hide the fact that this man was trouble with a capital T.

“Iv-eeeeee.” Alex drew out her name in that way only big sisters could do when they planned to interrogate.

Ivy poked the wheat bread of her sandwich. “What?”

“Why are you concerned about Brent’s feelings?”

She didn’t know. Honestly and truly, she didn’t know, but she couldn’t forget that momentary flash of emotion that passed over his face before he covered it with a smirk. “I don’t know; he’s your coworker and—”

“I know he’s basically sex on legs, Ivy, but he knows it. And I’d be hard-pressed to find a woman who hasn’t taken a ride in this town.”

Ivy pressed her lips together, chastising herself for letting her soft heart show. She needed to focus on finding a job and raising her daughter. Those were her priorities. Not going toe-to-toe with some cocky hot guy. “You’re right; forget I said anything.” Ivy held up her index fingers and crossed them in an X. “No men.”

“Ick,” Alex spat.

“Gross,” Ivy said.

Alex grinned at her, and Ivy returned it, sipping from her iced tea. “So, work going okay?”

“Yeah, I like it here. Cal’s fair. Brent’s fun to work with. Jack’s still a hard-ass but I think he’s warming to me.”

Alex had told Ivy that Brent and Cal’s dad was a brick wall of gruff and stubborn. “Good.”

“Violet off to school okay?” Alex asked.

Ivy’s daughter was in first grade at White Pine Elementary School in the Tory school district. They’d moved in time for her start at the beginning of the school year. “Her teacher called me again, saying Vi cried on and off this morning.” Ivy knew moving was hard on her, but they hadn’t had much of a choice. “I hate this.”

Alex squeezed Ivy’s hand where it rested on the table. “It’s school. You’re not torturing her. She’ll get used to it.”

Ivy’s stomach rolled, thinking about it. “I hope.”

“She’s a good kid. She just needs time.”

Ivy sighed. “I guess.”

“Alex,” a deep voice said from the doorway. Ivy craned her head to see a man who looked a lot like Brent but . . . wasn’t Brent.

“Yeah?” Alex answered.

The man nodded at Ivy. “I’m Cal.” He turned to Alex. “Sorry. I know you’re eating lunch, but got that customer of yours out front from last week. I tried talking to her, but she likes you better.”

Alex laughed. “Greta Sherman?”

“That’s the one.”

She balled up her empty sandwich wrapper. “I’ll be back in a couple of minutes,” she said to Ivy.

Ivy looked down at her half-eaten lunch. “I can leave—”

“Nah, I’ll be right back. You finish eating.”

Alex tossed her trash into the can on the way out.

Ivy took a sip of her tea and picked at her sandwich. She’d spent all morning on the computer, applying for jobs in and around Tory. It wasn’t necessarily a mecca of job opportunities, but Alex had found a place she fit in, and the pay wasn’t bad. Ivy had some savings, but it wasn’t going to last forever, and she wanted to pull her weight in the little family they’d created.

Her résumé was a bit slim. She had a high school diploma but no college degree, having spent her early twenties raising Violet. Her job options in Tory were working as a secretary for a lawyer, selling furniture at a department store, or being a nanny.

None was appealing.

But at least they all paid.

The chair across from her squeaked, and she lifted her gaze, opening her mouth to tell Alex about her job options.

Except Alex wasn’t sitting across from her.

Brent was.

He leaned back in his chair, feet up on the table and crossed at the ankle. He held a packet of peanuts and tipped it so a couple fell into his mouth. He chewed, steel eyes on her.

She clenched her jaw shut.

He swallowed. “You looked like you were going to say something.”

“Sure I was. To Alex. But you’re not Alex.”

“No, I’m not. But I’m a great listener.”

“I’m sure,” she said drily.

His lips quirked. “Want to hear about what other things I’m good at?”

“Not particularly.”

“Because I can do this thing with my tongue—”

Good God. “I don’t do this.”

“Don’t do what?”

She waved a hand between them. “This. Flirting.”

He raised his eyebrows. “Babe, I haven’t even begun to flirt.”

She took a deep breath to calm her rising blood pressure. “Don’t do that either.”

“Jesus! Now what?” His exasperation might have been cute if she still had a heart.

“Nicknames.”

“Babe?”

“My name is Ivy. I-V-Y. Three letters. Two syllables.” Even she wanted to cringe at how much of a bitch she was being.

He was studying her now, his face a little less amused and more . . . thoughtful. She didn’t like thoughtful Brent. Amused, flirting Brent? Harmless. Thoughtful Brent, who tried to look deeper? Dangerous as hell.

He ran two fingers over his lips and then dropped his hand to the table, cocking his head. “You’re just thorns everywhere I touch, aren’t you?”

She froze at his words, like a deer in headlights because yes—yes, she was a whole lot of thorns because she’d learned long ago they were necessary to protect all her soft parts.

Brent wasn’t done, though; his voice was softer when he spoke again. “You born that way, or something make you that way, Ivy?”

She swallowed. Yep, Brent Payton was dangerous in a sexy-as-hell package. His words were seeping past those thorns, hitting all the spots where she was weak. So she gathered herself and clenched her fists at her sides. “You’re just acting like this because I’m the first woman who hasn’t fallen at your feet.”

He laughed at that. “Fallen at my feet? Nah, there are plenty of women who’ve told me to go to hell. My percentage is good, though. Maybe eighty-twenty.” He grinned that shit-eating grin. “But you got me curious now. I wanna keeping prodding until I find a place that isn’t a thorn. How long do you think that’ll take me?”

Shit, no; that’s exactly what she didn’t want. With those eyes that were smart and trouble at the same time.

She swallowed and straightened her spine. “You’ll never get close enough.”

He cocked his head. “No?”

“No.”

He hummed a little and leaned back in his chair again. He threw a peanut in the air and caught it in his mouth. Then he chewed, with those steel eyes daring her to look away. “Guess I gotta plan my attack better next time, huh? You better work on those defenses.”

She heard Alex’s voice as her sister made her way back to the lunchroom. Ivy smiled and lifted her chin. “Who says I’ll be the one who needs defense?”

He laughed sharply, like he was surprised. “Oh, babe, bring it.”

She gritted her teeth. “Ivy.”

“Babe. I call it as I see it, and you’re definitely babe.”

Ivy growled.

He smiled, and then he was up out of his chair and walking out the door as Alex made her way in. Her eyes trailed Brent as he retreated to the garage.

Alex turned to Ivy, eyes concerned. “Was he bothering you?”

Bothering didn’t even touch it. “No, he’s fine. Nothing I can’t handle.”

Alex shrugged. “I can talk to him—”

“Alex, I swear, it was nothing, and even if it was, I could handle it.”

Her sister eyed her and then stole a bite of her sandwich. “Fine; now eat. You’re getting skinny.”

“Quit mothering me.”

Alex pointed to the sandwich with raised eyebrows, and Ivy glared at her as she took a bite.

Reading Order: Mechanics of Love series

Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson

#1 ~ Dirty Thoughts: My Review • EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#2 ~ Dirty Talk: Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads
#3 ~ Dirty Deeds: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads

about the author button

Megan EricksonMegan Erickson grew up in a family that averages 5’5” on a good day and started writing to create characters who could reach the top kitchen shelf.

She’s got a couple of tattoos, has a thing for gladiators and has been called a crazy cat lady. After working as a journalist for years, she decided she liked creating her own endings better and switched back to fiction.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids and two cats. And no, she still can’t reach the stupid top shelf.

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Blog Tour + ARC Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson

I’m so excited to be a part of the blog tour for Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson! Check out my review for the book below, as well as the first chapter and a giveaway!

Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson

Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson
Series: Mechanics of Love #1 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: June 16th 2015
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Some things are sexier the second time around

Cal Payton has gruff and grumbly down to an art…all the better for keeping people away. And it usually works. Until Jenna Macmillan—his biggest mistake—walks into Payton and Sons mechanic shop all grown up, looking like sunshine, and inspiring more than a few dirty thoughts.

Jenna was sure she was long over the boy she’d once loved with reckless abandon, but one look at the steel-eyed Cal Payton has her falling apart all over again. Ten years may have passed, but the pull is stronger than ever…and this Cal is all man.

Cal may have no intention of letting Jenna in, but she’s always been his light, and it’s getting harder to stay all alone in the dark. When a surprise from the past changes everything, Cal and Jenna must decide if their connection should be left alone, or if it’s exactly what they need for the future of their dreams.

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What a fantastic romance! I highly enjoyed Dirty Thoughts (and YES, there are tons of dirty stuff going on in this book 😉 ). This is the first book I’ve read by Megan Erickson, but after reading and loving Dirty Thoughts, I know it will not be my last. I loved the way the romance was written – it’s easy to read, fun, and did I mention, hot! The characters were portrayed in a realistic way and it was hard not to love them. Dirty Thoughts is a feel-good romance, with a hidden depth that surprised me, and I highly recommend it.

I absolutely adore second chance romances, and this one was written so well. Megan Erickson really captured the history between Cal and Jenna without having to bring in too many flashbacks. They were high school sweethearts, but an unfortunate circumstance drove them apart. Ten years later, Cal is working at his family’s mechanic shop, and the last person he expects to show up at Payton and Sons unannounced is his ‘sunshine’, Jenna. She’s back in town for good, and all those feelings from high school they thought they’d buried come rushing back up. And wow, it seriously gets hot between Jenna and Cal! The chemistry is so palpable between them, and they soon quickly fall back into lust again.

This. Them. Together. It was the same as it was a decade ago, yet different. Their bodies had changed. There was a new learning curve, but this magnetic connection that had always existed still crashed them together. Cal’s pull still tugged at her gut. Her heart ached, like it wanted to crawl out of her chest and into his.

Cal is a… surly sort of hero. It’s not necessarily unattractive, since I found myself loving him. Cal’s mother left their family when he was young, and he had to do a lot of growing up in order to take care of his two younger brothers. And because he’s had to take care of them for so long at such a young age, he feels like he’s all tapped out on being a family man. He doesn’t want to settle down – though the only person who ever made him want to was his high school sweetheart and the only girl he’s ever loved. Now that Jenna’s back, he’s questioning whether he truly wants to live a life of bachelorhood.

Jenna is the sweet, mothering kind of woman, and I adored her and her determination to make Cal see that they deserve another chance. She fights to make Cal see that he has so much love in him to share, even if he doesn’t see it. I also loved that Jenna was hilarious! She’s always got a quip ready, and the way she banters with Cal is so freaking sweet. Honestly, Jenna and Cal made the most adorable couple ever.

What I found most fascinating and endearing was Cal’s character growth. I feel like Dirty Thoughts is much more Cal’s journey than Jenna’s, as he struggles to come to terms with wanting more in life. I love characters who have a depth to them, and Cal is certainly one. He’s got his gruff, surly exterior, but inside, he’s got the most beautiful, warm heart ever. It takes a while for him to recognize that living a life of loneliness is not a happy one – it takes a bit too long, I felt, but the end was totally worth all the wait.

“Love you, Sunshine. Not sure I ever stopped. But what I felt for you at eighteen is nothing compared to how I feel for you now.”

Gah, Cal is just the sweetest hero ever. If you’re a fan of romance, you definitely want to read this book. It’s a satisfying, heartfelt read that I just really enjoyed. And can I say, I’m so, SO excited for Cal’s brother Brent’s story, which is next! He’s a total goofball in this book, so I can only imagine what he’ll be up to when he meets his woman.

4 hearts
lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.

Now here’s chapter one from Dirty Thoughts! ❤

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CHAPTER ONE

Cal Payton sighed and braced himself as the opening guitar riff of “Welcome to the Jungle” reverberated off the walls of the garage. Sure enough, several bars later, his brother, Brent, began his off-key rendition, which didn’t sound much different from his drunken karaoke version.

Which, yes, Cal had heard. More times than he wanted to.

He growled under his breath. Brent kept screeching Axl Rose, and if Cal wasn’t stuck on his back under this damn Subaru, he’d be flinging a wrench at Brent’s head. “Hey!” Cal yelled.

There was a blissful moment of silence. “What?” Brent’s voice came from somewhere behind him, probably in the bay next to him at the garage.

“Who sings this song?”

“Are you kidding me?” Brent’s voice was closer now. “It’s Guns N’ Roses. The legendary Axl Rose.”

“Yeah? Then how ’bout you let him sing it?”

There was a pause. “Fuck you.” His brother’s footsteps stomped away. Then the radio was turned up, and Brent started singing even louder.

Cal blew out a breath and tapped the socket wrench on his forehead, doing his best to tune out Brent’s increasingly loud voice. Cal vowed to buy earbuds and an iPod before he murdered his brother with a tire iron.

He turned his attention back to the exhaust shield he was fixing. The customer had complained of a loud rattle when his car idled. Sure enough, one of the heat shields covering the exhaust system under the car was loose. It was an easy fix. Cal used a gear clamp to wrap around the pipe of the exhaust system to prevent the shield from making noise.

It didn’t necessarily have to be done, but the Graingers were long-time customers at Payton and Sons Automotive. And they always sent those flavored popcorn buckets at Christmas. He and Brent fought over the caramel while their dad got the butter all to himself.

He finished tightening the hose clamp onto the pipe and then banged around the exhaust system with the side of his fist. No rattle.

He slid out from under the Subaru and patted it on the side. He squinted at the clock, seeing it was almost quitting time. Their dad, who owned half of the shop—Cal and Brent split ownership of the other 50 percent—had already gone home for the day.

Cal put away the tools he’d used, purposefully ignoring Brent as he launched into a Pearl Jam song. Cal rubbed his temple, wiping away the bead of sweat he could feel rolling down his face. The back room had a small table and a refrigerator, so Cal made his way there to get a water.

In the summer, they kept the large doors of the garage open, but the air was thick and humid today. The American flag outside hung like a limp rag in the still air.

Cal wore coveralls at work and usually kept them on to protect his skin from hot exhaust pipes and any number of sharp tools lying around. But as he walked back to the lunchroom, he stripped his upper body out of the coveralls so the torso and arms of the clothing hung loose around his legs. Underneath, he wore a tight white T-shirt that still managed to be marked with grease and black smudges from the work day.

In the back room, he grabbed a bottle of water from the refrigerator and leaned back against the wall. After unscrewing the cap, he tilted it back at his lips and chugged half the bottle.

After the Graingers came to pick up their Subaru, he was free to head home to his house. Alone. That was a new luxury. He used to live with Brent in an apartment, and it was fine until he realized he was almost thirty years old and still living with his younger brother. He was tight with his money, which Brent teased him about, but it’d been a good thing when he had enough to make the deposit on his small home. It had a garage, so he could store his bike and work on it when he had free time. Which wasn’t a lot, but he’d take what he could get. If his father would quit dicking him around and let him work on motorcycles for customers here, that’d be even better. But Jack Payton didn’t “want no bikers” around, ignoring the fact that his son rode a Harley-Davidson Softail.

Cal’s phone vibrated in the leg pocket of his coveralls. He pulled it out and glanced at the caller ID. It was Max, their youngest brother. Cal sighed and answered the call. “Yeah?”

“Cal!” Max shouted.

“You called me.”

“What’s going on?”

“Workin’.”

“You’re always working.” Max huffed.

Cal took another sip of water. “That’s what people do.”

“Hey, I work.”

“You play dodgeball with a bunch of teenagers.” Cal knew Max did a hell of a lot more than that at his physical education teaching job at a high school in eastern Pennsylvania, but it was fun as hell to get him worked up. Cal smiled. One of the first times that day.

“Hey, I had to hand out deodorant and condoms to those teenagers this year, so don’t give me that shit,” Max said.

“Condoms?”

“Yeah, they’re kinda liberal here,” Max muttered.

“Huh,” Cal said, scratching his head. They sure never handed out condoms in school when he was a teenager.

“Anyway,” Max said.

“Yeah, anyway, what’dya need?”

“How do you know I need something?”

“Why else do you call?”

“I want to hear your pleasant voice?”

Cal grunted.

“I just wanted to know if you had any plans for your birth—ouch!” There was rustling on the other line, some mutters, and a higher-pitched voice in the background. Then Max spoke again. “Okay, so Lea punched me because she said I’m doing this wrong.”

Cal smiled. Lea was Max’s fiancée, and she was a firecracker.

“We wanted to come visit you and take you out for your birthday. All of us.” Max cleared his throat. “And you can bring a date too. If you want.”

A date. When was the last time he’d introduced a woman to his family? Hell, when was the last time he’d had a date? “The five of us should be fine.”

“So that’s okay? To celebrate? I mean, you’re turning thirty, old man.”

Cal let the old man comment roll off his back. “Yeah, sounds good.” He paused. “Thanks.”

Max seemed pleased, chattering on about his neighborhood and how he was enjoying being off work for the summer. Cal drank his water and listened to his brother ramble. Max hadn’t always been a happy kid. Cal had tried his best after their mom left the family shortly after Max was born. Their dad was pissed and bitter and immersed himself in working at the garage. So as the oldest brother, Cal scrambled to hold the reins of his wild brothers.

He hadn’t done such a great job, he didn’t think. His brothers survived in spite of him, not because of him, he was sure. Brent was still a little crazy, and it had taken Lea to straighten Max out in college. Cal tried not to dwell on his failure and instead appreciated that at least they were all alive and healthy.

It was why he valued his own space so much now. His alone time. Because he’d been a surrogate father at age six, and he was fucking over it.

Although, by the time he hung up the phone with Max and slipped his phone back into his pocket, he had a warm feeling in his gut that hadn’t been there before his brother had called.

He was flipping the cap of the water in his fingers and finishing the last of the bottle when Brent poked his head in the back room. “Hey.”

Cal raised his eyebrows.

“Someone’s asking for you.”

Cal tossed the empty bottle in the trash. “The Graingers?”

“Nope, they just came and got the Subaru and left. This is a new customer.”

Cal threw the empty bottle in the recycling bin, turned off the light to the back room, and followed his brother out to the garage. “We’re closing soon. Is it an emergency? Are they regulars?” He pulled a rag out of his pocket and began to wipe his dirty hands. He thought about washing them first in case this customer wanted to shake hands.

Brent didn’t answer him, didn’t even look at him over his shoulder.

And that was when a small sliver of apprehension trickled down his spine. “Brent—”

His brother whirled around and held his arm out as they walked past a Bronco their dad had been working on. “I think it’s better if you take this one.”

Cal squinted into the sun and when his eyes adjusted to the light, her legs were the first thing he saw. And he knew—he fucking knew—because how many times had he sat in class in high school staring at those legs in a little skirt, dreaming about when he could get back between them? It’d been a lot.

His eyes traveled up those bare legs to a tiny pair of denim shorts, up a tight tank top that showed a copious amount of cleavage, and then to that face that he’d never, ever forget as long as he lived.

He never thought he’d see Jenna MacMillan again. And now, there she was, standing in front of his garage next to a Dodge Charger, her brunette hair in a wavy mass around her shoulders.

Fuck.

***

Okay, so admittedly Jenna had known this was a stupid idea. She’d tried to talk herself out of it the whole way, muttering to herself as she sat at a stop light. The elderly man in the car in the lane beside her had been staring at her like she was nuts.

And she was. Totally nuts.

It’d been almost a decade since she’d seen Cal Payton, and yet one look at those silvery blue eyes and she was shoved right back to the head-over-heels in love eighteen-year-old girl she’d been.

Cal had been hot in high school, but damn, had time been good to him. He’d always been a solid guy, never really hitting that awkward skinny stage some teenage boys went through after a growth spurt.

And now . . . well . . . Cal looked downright sinful standing there in the garage. He’d rolled down the top of his coveralls, revealing a white T-shirt that looked painted on, for God’s sake. She could see the ridges of his abs, the outline of his pecs. A large smudge on the sleeve drew her attention to his bulging biceps and muscular, veined forearms. Did he lift these damn cars all day? Thank God it was hot as Hades outside already so she could get by with flushed cheeks.

And he was staring at her with those eyes that hadn’t changed one bit. Cal never cared much for social mores. He looked people in the eye, and he held it long past comfort. Cal had always needed that, to be able to measure up who he was dealing with before he ever uttered a word.

She wondered how she measured up. It’d been a long time since he’d laid eyes on her, and the last time he had, he’d been furious.

Well, she was the one who’d come here. She was the one who needed something. She might as well speak up, even though what she needed right now was a drink. A stiff one. “Hi, Cal.” She went with a smile that surely looked a little strained.

He stood with his booted feet shoulder width apart, and at the sound of her voice, he started a bit. He finally stopped doing that staring thing as his gaze shifted to the car by her side and then back to her. “Jenna.”

His voice. Well, crap, how could she have forgotten about his voice? It was low and silky with a spicy edge, like Mexican chocolate. It warmed her belly and raised goose bumps on her skin.

She cleared her throat as he began walking toward her, his gaze teetering between her and the car. Brent was off to the side, watching them, with his arms crossed over his chest. He winked at her. She hid her grin with pursed lips and rolled her eyes. He was a good-looking bastard but irritating as hell. Nice to see some things never changed. “Hey, Brent.”

“Hey there, Jenna. Looking good.”

Cal whipped his head toward his brother. “Get back to work.”

Brent gave him a sloppy salute and then shot her another knowing smirk before turning around and retreating into the garage bay.

When she faced Cal again, she jolted, because he was close now, almost in her personal space. His eyes bored into her. “What’re ya doing here, Jenna?”

His question wasn’t accusatory. It was conversational, but the intent was in his tone, lying latent until she gave him reason to really put the screws to her. She didn’t know if he meant, what was she doing here at his garage, or what was she doing in town? But she went for the easy question first.

She gestured to the car. “I, uh, I think the bearings need to be replaced. I know that I could take it anywhere, but . . .” She didn’t want to tell him it was Dylan’s car, and he was the one who had let it go so long that she swore the front tires were going to fall off. As much as her brother loved his car, he was an idiot. An idiot who despised Cal, and she was pretty sure the feeling was mutual. “I wanted to make sure the job was done right, and everyone knows you do the best job here.” That part was true. The Paytons had a great reputation in Tory.

But Cal never let anything go. He narrowed his eyes and propped his hands on his hips, drawing attention to the muscles in his arms. “How do you know we still do the best job here if you haven’t been back in ten years?”

Well, then. Couldn’t he just nod and take her keys? She held them in her hand, gripping them so tightly that the edge was digging into her palm. She loosened her grip. “Because when I did live here, your father was the best, and I know you don’t do anything unless you do it the best.” Her voice faded. Even though the last time she’d seen Cal, his eyes had been snapping in anger, at least they’d showed some sort of emotion. This steady blank gaze was killing her. Not when she knew how his eyes looked when he smiled, as the skin at the corners crinkled and the silver of his irises flashed.

She thought now that this had been a mistake. She’d offered to get the car fixed for her brother while he was out of town. And while she knew Cal worked with his dad now, she’d still expected to run into Jack. And even though Jack was a total jerk-face, she would have rather dealt with him than endure this uncomfortable situation with Cal right now. “You know, it’s fine. Don’t worry about it. I’ll just—”

He snatched the keys out of her hand. Right. Out. Of. Her. Hand.

“Hey!” She propped a hand on her hip, but he wasn’t even looking at her, instead fingering the key ring. “Do you always steal keys from your customers?”

He cocked his head and raised an eyebrow at her. There was the smallest hint of a smile, just a tug at the corner of his lips. “I don’t make that a habit, no.”

“So I’m special, then?” She was flirting. Was this flirting? Oh God, it was. She was flirting with her high school boyfriend, the guy who’d taken her virginity, and the guy whose heart she’d broken when she had to make one of the most difficult decisions of her life.

She’d broken her own heart in the process.

His gaze dropped, just for a second, and then snapped back to her face. “Yeah, you’re special.”

He turned around, checking out the car, while she stood gaping at his back. He’d . . . he’d flirted back, right? Cal wasn’t really a flirting kind of guy. He said what he wanted and followed through. But flirting, Cal?

She shook her head. It’d been over ten years. Surely he’d lived a lot of life during that time she’d been away, going to college, then grad school, then working in New York. She didn’t want to think about what that flirting might mean, now that she was back in Tory for good. Except he didn’t know that.

“So, you think the bearings need to be replaced?” Cal ran his hand over the hood. From this angle, all she saw was hard muscle covering broad shoulders, shifting beneath his T-shirt.

She shook herself and spoke up. “Yeah, it’s making that noise—you know, that growl.”

He nodded.

The only reason she knew was because she’d spent a lot of weekends and lazy summer afternoons as a teenager, lying in the grass, getting a tan in her bikini while Cal worked on his car, an old black Camaro, in his driveway. She’d learned a lot about cars and hadn’t forgotten all of it. She wondered if he still had that Camaro.

“Want me to inspect it too?” Cal was at the passenger’s side door now, easing it open.

“What?”

He pointed to the sticker on the windshield. “I can do it now, if you’d like. You have to get it done by end of next month.”

She opened her mouth to tell him sure, but then she’d have to give him the registration and insurance card, and then he’d know it was Dylan’s car. “No, no, that’s all right.”

He frowned. “Why not?”

“I just . . .”

He opened up the passenger’s side door and bent inside.

“What are you doing?” She walked around the car, just as he pulled some papers out of the glove box. She stopped and fidgeted with her fingers, because he’d know in three . . . two . . .

He bent and tossed the papers back in the glove box. “I’ll have it for you by end of the day tomorrow.” He started walking toward the office of the garage.

He had to have seen the name, right? He had to have seen it. She walked behind him. “Cal, I—”

He stopped and turned. “Do you need a ride?”

“What?”

“Do you need a ride . . . home, or wherever you’re going?”

She shook her head. “I’m going to walk across the street to Delilah’s store. She’ll take me home.”

His gaze flitted to the shop across the street and then back to Jenna. He nodded. “All right, then.”

She tried again. “Cal—”

“You picking it up or your brother?”

The muscle shift in his jaw was the only indication that he was bothered by this. “I’m sorry, I should have told you . . .”

He shook his head. “You don’t owe it to me to tell me anything. You asked me to fix a car—”

“Yeah, but you and Dylan don’t like each other—”

That muscle in his jaw ticked again. “Sure, we don’t like each other, but what? You think I’m going to lose my temper and bash his car in?”

Uh-oh. “No, I—”

He shook his head, and when he spoke again, his voice was softer. “You didn’t have to keep it a secret it was his car. I’m not eighteen anymore. I got more control than I used to.”

She felt like a heel. And a jerk. She wasn’t the same person she was at eighteen, so she shouldn’t have treated Cal like he was the hothead he’d been then. “Cal, I’m so sorry. I—”

He waved a hand. “Don’t worry about it, Sunshine.”

That name—it sent a spark right through her like a live wire. She hadn’t heard that nickname in so long, she’d almost forgotten about it, but her body sure hadn’t. It hadn’t forgotten the way Cal could use that one word to turn her into putty.

He seemed as surprised as she did. His eyes widened a fraction before he shut down. “Anyway”—his voice was lower now—“we close tomorrow at six. Appreciate it if you’d pick it up before that.” He jingled the keys and shot her one more measuring look, and then he disappeared into the garage office, leaving her standing outside the door, her mind broiling in confusion.

She should have known Cal Payton could still knock her off her feet.

Reading Order: Mechanics of Love series

Dirty Thoughts by Megan Erickson Dirty Talk by Megan Erickson Dirty Deeds by Megan Erickson

#1 ~ Dirty Thoughts: EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#2 ~ Dirty Talk: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
#3 ~ Dirty Deeds: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads

about the author button

Megan Erickson grew up in a family that averages 5’5” on a good day and started writing to create characters who could reach the top kitchen shelf.

She’s got a couple of tattoos, has a thing for gladiators and has been called a crazy cat lady. After working as a journalist for years, she decided she liked creating her own endings better and switched back to fiction.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids and two cats. And no, she still can’t reach the stupid top shelf.

Website • Twitter • Facebook • Goodreads

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$25 gift card to e-book retailer of winner’s choice

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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