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A Son of Carver
by Haven Francis
Genre: Upper YA/NA Contemporary
Release Date: May 17th 2016


Sometimes the best version of yourself is the one you can only see through someone else’s eyes. But what happens when those eyes belong to the one person you don’t want them to?
Thanks to her father’s affair and her parent’s resulting separation, Presley Knox has been ripped from her life in California and dropped into an abyss in the middle of Georgia. With her alternative looks and creative spirit, trying to find her place in a sea of jocks and cheerleaders is hard, but doing it while living with her cousin who belittles her every chance she gets is almost impossible. There is one person in Carver who embodies everything Presley hates about her new life and she can’t help but use him as the outlet for all of her frustrations.
Nash Carter’s bad boy image isn’t a fa├žade; he drinks too much, sleeps around, makes his money street racing and has zero plans for his future beyond living a rowdy life with his likeminded dad and older brother. His good looks, cut body and popularity have always gotten him anything and anyone he’s ever wanted. That is until Presley Knox showed up at Carver High.
Nash knows to steer clear of Presley and her sharp tongue that’s always aimed at him. But that becomes impossible when they’re paired together for a semester-long photography assignment that promises to push them into the depths of each other’s personal lives. In order to survive the semester, Nash implements a new strategy: get the one girl who’s immune to his charm to change her mind about him.
With Nash’s unwavering pursuit to know everything about her, and with the nagging voice inside her head that’s insisting there’s more to him than she’s letting herself see, Presley struggles to keep her wall firmly in place. When it slowly begins to crumble, Nash wonders if he should have kept his distance after all because the girl that’s been hiding under Presley’s hard shell is breaking his heart wide open.
Nash has been a lot of things to a lot of girls, but Presley’s the only one he’s ever wanted to shelter and protect. But how is he going to do that when he knows she’s right to keep their friendship a secret in order to protect herself from him?

Due to mature language and content, A Son of Carver is intended for readers 17+. 

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“From one to ten, how much do you hate living here?” I ask Presley.

She laughs – a normal cute laugh, not an angry one. “Depends on where I am.”

“You’re here; in your room… with me.”

She rolls her eyes at me. “Ten’s the worst?”


“An eleven?” she smirks.

“Is it because the room part or the me part?” I ask, cocking my head at her.


I pout at her.

“Don’t even try that with me,” she says, narrowing her eyes.

“It’s cute,” I tell her.

She shakes her head.

“Come on, I’m cute – you have to admit it.”

“You’re not cute, Nash.”

“Yeah, I guess sexy’s the more accurate word.”

She squints her eyes at me, her mouth lifting with a wicked grin. “It bothers you, doesn’t it?”

“What? That I’m so sexy? No, not really. I mean, sometimes I just want to be left alone but it comes with the territory. What am I supposed to do?”

“It bothers you that I don’t think you’re cute, or sexy and that I don’t particularly like you.”

Yes. Completely. In fact, I’ve made it my mission to make you like me.

“Am I the only girl who hasn’t crumbled after a mere glance from you?”

I lean forward and cock my head at her, giving her a sly smile. To which, her reaction is a tight grin that says, nice try, cheese ball. “Probably. But don’t worry, I’m pretty sure I’m getting to you already. Not particularly liking me is a huge step up from absolutely despising me. And I can maybe believe the not cute thing, but there’s no chance you don’t think I’m sexy. Have you seen me with my shirt off?”

“You realize that huge muscles aren’t a turn on for everyone and that some people even find things like a brain and modesty to be sexy?”

I give up the act and lean back on my elbows. “I don’t know what to say – you got me. I don’t have much of a brain and I’m definitely not modest. You could still like me though, right? I mean in a, I’ll tolerate him for a couple of hours kind of way.”

She mimics my posture, laying back on her own elbows. “I suppose.”

I stare at her – she’s got her hair pulled up on the top of her head in a messy bun, her face is bare; her ivory skin glowing in the sun that’s coming through her window. Her eyes are closed, her long lashes brushing against her cheeks. She looks peaceful. I pick up my camera, aim it towards her and snap a picture.

“What are you doing?” she mutters, eyes still closed.

“Taking your picture.”

“Can we talk about it for a minute before you proceed with your assignment?”

“Talk about it?”

She lets out a frustrated breath, sits up and looks at me. “We were supposed to start at your house. This makes me uncomfortable; having someone take my picture, especially here in my home landscape that’s not actually my home at all.”

“Are you trying to tell me you don’t want me to take your picture? Because I’m pretty sure I can’t pass the class if that’s another one of your rules I have to abide by.”

She pinches her eyes closed and clenches her teeth. “You can take my picture. I know you have to do that. I just thought if we laid out a plan I could limit the number of pictures taken.”

“I don’t get you, Presley. I’m trying to get you, I really am… but honestly, I can’t figure you out. Why wouldn’t you want your picture taken?”

She glares at me, which happens so often I’m pretty much immune to it.

“You’re not self-conscious?”

Another glare, this time it punctures the surface of my skin.

“You’re gonna have to use words, I’m not fluent in severe facial expressions.”

“Forget it, Nash. Just do whatever you’ve gotta do, it’s fine.” She stands and grabs her camera off her desk and shoves it into her backpack.

I stand too and walk to her. I turn her around so she’s stuck between me and the desk. She has a talent of running away when our conversations become too personal but I’m not gonna be dealing with whatever issue she’s got with my camera for the rest of the semester. “I get that you’re immune to my charms, so please don’t take this as anything other than a fact being stated.”

She crosses her arms over her chest, but doesn’t tell me to shut up, so I carry on.

“You’re pretty. Like really, really pretty – you know that, right?”

“I swear to God, if you say one word about my body…”

“I’m not talking about your body which, by the way, is extremely beautiful. I’m not even talking about your blue eyes, your thick hair or your perfect skin. I’m talking about your cute smirks, your impressive eye rolls, the way you chew on your lip and how you’re always hiding behind your hair. I’m not artist, I can barely work the camera on my phone, but I’m pretty sure I’m gonna ace this class because you’re my subject matter.”

“Jesus, Nash, you are seriously too much. I mean I get it – I can see how a speech like that would win over any girl you know but you’ve gotta stop trying to use your lines on me. It’s seriously starting to piss me off.”’

My head actually retracts at that. There is no winning with this girl. “You really don’t believe a word that comes out of my mouth, do you? You think everything I say is just some stupid line meant to convince people that I’m likeable because, in reality, I can’t possibly be anything other than scum, right?” I stare at her, fully aware that I’m getting more worked up than I should be. She stares back at me but says nothing.

“When I saw you in that class I wasn’t any less annoyed than you were, but I told you I would try with you. And I believe you told me the same thing. But I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who’s actually doing it. I’ve been nice to you, I’ve taken two days out of my weekend to prove to you that I’m taking this seriously because you told me you needed that from me, I’ve tried getting to know you, I even tried being a friend to you. And every time you make it clear that you hate everything about me I find some reason to justify why that is and I let it go because I’m trying to get somewhere with you. But we’re never gonna get anywhere if you’re constantly pissed off at me for no damn reason. I can’t even give you a genuine compliment without you making me feel like a piece of crap.”

She flares her nostrils and shakes her head.

Presley’s never been able to keep her mouth shut. She’s got an opinion about everything and everyone, especially me. I didn’t think anything could be more annoying. But this is. Her refusal to acknowledge anything I say like I don’t even deserve her words is way more annoying than a litany of insults.

Forget it. I grab my bag off her bed and head out the door.

Book One (click on image for Goodreads link):
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About the Author

An escapist filled with wanderlust, writing is Haven’s responsible adult version of getting in the car and driving without aim. Reading and music are close seconds.  She and her husband can often be found checking out their favorite bands locally or hundreds of miles away via road trips. Reading is something they don’t have in common but he tolerates her late night, dimly-lit habit.
Haven graduated with a B.A., double majoring in English literature and fine arts. She made a living writing about trends in interior design but thoroughly enjoys that fact that people, unlike furniture, can fall in love. She especially loves when they fall desperately and into a forbidden kind of love. She has a slightly embarrassing fascination with the period of life that sits awkwardly between childhood and adulthood; the years when nothing is certain, lots of mistakes are made, falling in love is inevitable and finding yourself is a struggle. For her it’s a fun place to escape to and she hopes her readers agree.
To date, Haven has self-published six new adult and young adult romance novels, and her first traditionally published novel will be released through Harmony Ink Press in July, 2017. She also works as a graphic designer but considers Mom her most important title.
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