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40 Something by Shannon Peel - Book Tour + Giveaway

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40 Something
by Shannon Peel
Chick Lit, Contemporary Fiction

Five women navigate life while juggling careers, children, family, and the
men in their lives.
Charlie is bored with the family tradition of Sunday Dinner so she brings a
friend her family won't approve of to spice things up a bit. Will
this friend go too far and cause too much damage?
Rose only wants to do what is right and keep her family safe. How can she
do that when the world is so dangerous and her teenagers so willful.
Will helping a friend invite trouble into her perfect world?
Lindsay loves to have fun and enjoys the company of men. She is a modern
playgirl who will stop at nothing to get a man's attention. Will she
find what she's looking for or something unexpected?
Sophie wants to keep the peace and keep everyone happy, especially her
ex-husband, so her children will live with her full time. Will she
lose the children if she can't afford to take care of them?
Justine wants to escape her perfect life, she just doesn't realize it. Will
she find the passion that is missing or will she continue to hide
behind her computer screen?  


 I have an online dating profile.
The photos look nothing like me. The woman in the photos is cute and the write up even makes her sound interesting. Lindsay’s makeover had me speechless, when I was finally allowed to look in a mirror. I didn’t look like me. My hair had body, a bit of curl, and softly, framed my face.  I feel weird looking at myself. I couldn’t stop staring at the stranger that was staring back.
I looked and felt pretty.
Will a guy think I’m pretty? What am I doing? No one is going to want me. I know that, and yet, I let Lindsay and Charlie push me into this. This is nuts. I’m nuts. Why do I let others push me into things?
“Do you want more wine?” 
I shake my head.
“Sophie. You look freaked out, are you OK?”
I shrug.
“What’s on your mind girlfriend?”
“Well.” I’m not sure what to say, they’ve been so nice to me, and I know they mean well. I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Discomfort shifts my body and I look down. “I’m just nervous, I mean, what if no one messages me.”
“Sophie. You already have three messages.” Lindsay says.
I look at her, my eyes wide and mouth open. Did she say three messages? Three men have messaged me? What do I do now?
“Check it out. These guys are the hovering ones, waiting to strike at the newbies while they are fresh, not worth an answer. You’ll get some quality ones soon enough though.”
I take a look, there really are three messages. Two of them don’t have photos and the third is a muscle head with a shaved head, looks a lot like Mr. Clean. I click on each message.
Takeuout: Hey sexy, what you doing?
Hotdude69: You want to come over for a good time?
Mr. Clean: Hello. You are very pretty.
I look to Charlie and Lindsay. I don’t know what to do.
“Don’t message them, the idiots with no pic are either married, ugly, or trolls, all of which you don’t need to bother with. The third. I don’t know. You’re choice. If you think he’s cute then chat with him. Otherwise just ignore it and wait for something better.”
I am unsure about what to do. I don’t want to do the wrong thing.
“What are the rules?” I ask.
“Rules? There are none.” Lindsay says.
No rules? How does anyone know what to do? How to act? What is OK and what is wrong? I don’t want to offend anyone. I don’t want to hurt anyone. And I definitely don’t want to get hurt. There must be rules. There must be a code of conduct.
“It’s whatever you want it to be. You want to have lots of sex, have lots of sex. You want a man to treat you right then you tell him to. You want a relationship, you wait to find a relationship. Don’t do what you don’t want, that’s all.” Lindsay says.
What I don’t want? I don’t know what I want, let alone what I don’t want.
“Take this new message from Wantmore: Hey sexy lady are you lonely tonight? What do you think he is saying he wants?”
“He’s asking if I’m lonely.” I say.
“He wants sex. He’s asking you if you want to come over to his place for a booty call. Do you?” Charlie says.
“NO.” Oh my God, what have I gotten myself into? “Why doesn’t he just say that?”
“Because he knows he’ll get virtually slapped down for it.” Lindsay says.
“Give you a compliment, some innuendo, enough to start a conversation.” Charlie adds.
“Let’s have some fun with this one.”
“Lindsay.” Charlie says.
“He’s hot and we need something to do.”
Lindsay leans over the computer and types, hey hot stuff, I’m very lonely tonight, what about you? I look at her, she lied, why would she do that? His response comes immediately.
Wantmore: Want some company? 
Lindsay: What are you thinking?
Wantmore: Some kissing. Cuddling. My tongue tasting your body. I am very good with my tongue.
Lindsay: Mmmmm. I like a good licking, ;)
Wantmore: I’ll lick you good baby.
Lindsay starts to laugh and Charlie rolls her eyes, I’m at a loss.
“This is dating?” I ask.
“A part of it. There are lots of guys on here who want to get off on dirty talk, while jerking off. A large majority of them want casual sex with no strings. Nothing else. Just come over, pleasure me, and go home.” Charlie says.
“Sounds like they should call a prosititute or call girl.” I say.
“They should, they don’t want to pay or take a hit to their egos by paying for sex. Though I’m not sure why that would be a hit to their egos. Those girls need to make a living too.” Charlie says. “And if they did, they would be probably be less rude when dating. The funny thing is they don’t realize that the woman on here looking for quick sex, are sleeping with a lot of them and they are all sharing the same girls, which is how STDs get spread, because these guys don’t want to use a condom.”
“What?” I am horrified.
Charlie continues, “lots of them were married and are used to sex without a condom, so they don’t want to use one. They are dumb enough to believe that they have chosen someone who is clean, and doesn’t sleep around with other guys, at least not without a condom. They believe the woman is telling them the truth, when she wants to get laid as much as he does. They lie to each other to get what they want.”
“Hey. We always make sure we get tested and are clean.” Lindsay says.
“Yeah, up until your next fuck. I keep telling you to be more careful.”
“I don’t want to do this anymore.”
“Sophie. They aren’t all dumb pigs, just the majority of them. There are decent ones out there who are relationship guys.” Charlie says.
“They all have their uses and are worth exploring. It’s about having fun and some guys are only fun in the sack.” Lindsay adds.
“One of these days you’re going to find one who is worth so much more than a roll in the hay and then what are you going to do if he asks how many men you’ve been with?” Charlie asks Lindsay.
“Tell him. He won’t care.”
“Right. ‘Cause men are such liberal minded creatures who don’t think in double standards. What about, loves his ex guy. He admitted that he wanted to get back together with his wife, but because she’d been with other men he couldn’t. When I pointed out he slept with other women his comment was, that’s different, you’re not a man, you don’t understand. I understood alright, he held one set of standards for him and another set for his ex-wife.”
“You’re too hard on them. They are flawed, sure, but if you are good in bed they’ll keep you.”
“No they won’t. They will fuck ya, but that’s it.”
“You are way too jaded.”
“And you are way too forgiving.”
“I thought you two said this was supposed to be fun.”
The two of them start laughing.
“Sorry Sophie. It’s just that we have different opinions about what is acceptable and what isn’t, when it comes to how men behave. It’s a running debate between us, it is part of the fun. You’ll find your own opinions about men, what you will accept as acceptable, and what you won’t.”
“Charlie’s just a stick in the mud who hates men.” Lindsay sticks her tongue out at Charlie.
“You bet I hate men. All the good ones are married and I’m sick of being treated badly.”
These two are kidding right?  Why in the world do they think that it’s a good idea for me to do this? I’m not sure I can survive being rejected by a man. Craig threw me away and the pain of it still cuts at me daily. Do I want to add to it by having other guys using me for sex or rejecting me because I won’t put out? This is not for me. I am not meant to be with anyone except Craig and he doesn’t want me. 
I can’t do this.

Shannon Peel grew up in Enderby, BC where her family's root run deep. Growing
up where television was either non existent or very limited she
relied on books & imagination to escape into the world

She went to UBC to study and earn a general studies BA with a
concentration in Political Science and Economics. Macro analysis of
world events, social justice and human motivations became a passion
of hers. This passion is a driving force in all her stories, which
have political, economic, and social justice undercurrents. 

After a career in the financial field she decided to stay home and raise
her two children until school age. In 2007 she return to the
workforce as a sales / marketing / advertising professional. She
currently resides in BC's Lower Mainland with her two teenage
Shannon Peel is a creative, intelligent professional with a 20 year proven
track record in sales, marketing, customer relations, project
management, presentations, and communication. 

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