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Far from the Usual by Avril Ashton


Product Description

He’s her ex’s brother, yet Arden Windham aches to be in Cam Mercer’s arms. The man is rude and obnoxious, his blue eyes cold and unfeeling, but he makes her body melt. Being with ex-con Cam is nowhere in her plans, not if she wants the affection she’s worked so hard to gain from her overbearing father. Still, Cam’s touch is unlike anything she’s ever felt and Arden finds herself having to choose between her wants and her needs.

Cameron Mercer is his family’s black sheep, a man apart. For six months he watched Arden waste her time with his twin and now she’s free, he’s not waiting another minute. He’s on a campaign to get her off the tight rope she’s been walking. There’s a rebel behind that smooth façade and he’s on a mission to set Arden free. Too bad she insists on putting up a fight.

Be Warned: anal sex.



 “All done, Mr. Mercer?”


“Yeah, you’re good to go.” He held her gaze, heating her skin under all that ice as he quoted his price.


“Great.” She broke eye contact and fumbled with her purse. “I assume cash is acceptable?” At his curt nod she counted out the appropriate amount plus a nice tip and handed it over. “Thank you for your prompt service.”


He stared at her then flipped his gaze to the money in her hand and backed away without taking it.


“What the hell?” Arden scrambled out of the car, cursing those damned heels as they sank into the soft ground. Rain pelted her in the face as she yelled after Cam. “What the fuck is your problem?”


He ignored her and she kicked off her heels and raced after him. Grabbing his arm, she tugged.


“What the hell is your problem with me, Mr. Mercer?” She brushed wet hair from her eyes and glared up at him. “Did I kill your puppy or something?”


He shrugged and her gaze darted to those shoulders.




“I don’t like you,” he said.


What? Arden gaped up at him. She would never cop to how her chest felt like he’d sliced her open. “Everybody likes me.”


He laughed in her face. “You’re a spoiled, entitled rich kid.”


Where the hell did he get off? “You don’t know me.” She poked him in the chest. “You don’t know shit about me, so you have no right to judge me.”


Water dripped from his hood and down his chin. “My brother knew, right? And it seems he had enough of you.”


“Motherfucker!” She lifted her hand to punch him in the freaking nose, but Cam grabbed her wrists. She fought him, kicking at his shins.


“Get your hands off me, you son of a bitch.”


He lifted her off her feet and brought her down on the hood of his truck. Arden struggled as he grabbed her nape and brought their heads close.


“Does daddy know how dirty his little girl’s mouth is?” His lips brushed her ear and Arden shivered.


Damn. She struggled harder but his vice grip held her immobile. Rain poured, wetting her tight white dress, molding it to her skin.


“Did my brother get any of those dirty words or are they all for me?” His fingers at her nape tightened. His bulky frame covered her vision and Arden inhaled his scent of clean soap and anger. Her nipples beaded.


She tried sliding out from under his hold, but only succeeded in sprawling backward on the truck’s wet hood. Lifting her hands, she clutched his arms.


“Cam.” She heard the whimper in her voice, but rejected it. She didn’t whimper.


He lifted his head, met her eyes, and her tremors started. His fingers at her nape flexed. The coolness in his eyes bled away, leaving only heat. Leaving only flames.


“No.” She shook her head. It wasn’t right, but her cunt was all slippery. He didn’t like her, but she tightened her grip on his forearm. “You don’t like me.”


His lips curved, his hold on her slackened and Arden scrambled away, nearly falling to the ground in her attempt to get away.


Cam grabbed her hand, yanked her into his chest.


Arden held her breath to avoid breathing in his musk.


“I don’t have to like you to want you, Princess.”


She was burning up, melting, but Arden gathered her strength and pushed at his chest. “I don’t like you, either, Mr. Mercer. Nor do I want you.” Oh, God. She couldn’t even convince herself.


He chuckled, blue eyes flashing. “Liar. I’ve seen it in your eyes, Princess. You think I don’t know you’ve been avoiding me?”


“Shut up! Shut up!” She squeezed her eyes shut, panting. He knew. God.  She should leave, walk away, but there was a strange buzzing in her ear, her heart thudded in her chest, and her pussy was all kinds of hungry.


Wet fingers grazed her cheek, cupped her jaw. His hot breath fanned across her face. Arden forced herself not to inhale, not to move, not to moan. Soft, firm lips brushed against hers, feather light. Barely there. She sucked in a breath, reached for him, but he’d already moved back.


Away from her.


His gaze was hard, inscrutable. “If you want it then I’ve got it, Princess.”


She swallowed, coughed. “No.” Arden shook her head, the lie burning her tongue. “I don’t want it.” She straightened her wet dress and turned her back, walking back to her car.


Cam raced after her. “I’m not alone in this attraction, Princess. You can’t hide from it and me forever.”


She heard the words but chose to ignore them. He had no idea what the hell he was saying. This wasn’t an attraction, merely a lack in judgment. Arden bent over, digging out her heels from under a pile of mud with a grimace. “I have to go.”


He grabbed her arm. “The road is blocked because of an accident. No one is coming down this way, you’ll have to take the long way home.”


She stared down at his hand on her arm. “I should thank you, I guess. Right now, I just need to get dry. And drunk.”


He narrowed his eyes. “What are you trying to forget?”


“A lot.”


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Product Reviews

  1. The Romance Reviews 3 Star Review

    Posted by on 17th Oct 2012

    FAR FROM THE USUAL is one of those books that really should carry a warning label for the heat it packs. Though I had some issues with some plot element, there is no doubt that its emotional honesty and irresistibly spicy lead couple made for quite a fun and steamy read.

    Arden Windham has been adjusting a lot lately. After moving back in with her rich, emotionally distant father and her demanding stepmother, her philandering boyfriend Clark Mercer decides to end their relationship. Arden is willing to take a lot in stride with a sassy smile, but when she gets a flat tire one rain-drenched night and has no one to call but Clark's brother, Cam, everything in her life begins to change.

    Cam has always made Arden a little uneasy, whether it's the stigma of being an ex-con and the black sheep of his family, or the intensity of his stare whenever they've met. But now that they are face to face, Arden realizes there is so much more behind that gaze.

    For six months, Cam has watched Arden, and for six months, he has wanted and fantasized about nothing but having Arden as his very own. Now that she is single again, he isn't about to waste a single moment letting Arden know how he feels, and all that he has to offer. But even if he succeeds in getting her into his bed, what hope does Cam have that Arden will be willing to stand up to both their families and fight for a future with someone like him?

    It's hard not to root for Cam's unlikely love with Arden. I have an enormous soft spot for bad boys, and Cam is a wonderful blend of tortured, tempting and rebellious. He is utterly genuine about his feelings for Arden and ready to risk everything he has for a chance to make her happy. I also really respected him for demanding honesty in return from Arden.

    Arden has been hiding behind so many masks, it seems she's started fooling herself. Constantly under pressure from her father and stepmother to be someone she isn't, Arden comes across at first as someone rather shallow and selfish. With a little prodding from Cam, however, she finds the courage to show the strong, determined woman Cam saw from the beginning.

    The chemistry between Arden and Cam is shocking, spicy and irresistible, but the lack of build-up kept me from getting involved in the plot for longer than I would have liked. Because Arden's real history with Cam isn't revealed until much later in the story, when they met, I didn't assume there was anything much between them. Hence, Cam's reaction to Arden and his subsequent pursuit of her felt out of place. Looking back, these scenes made much more sense, but taking some time to build some tension and or give some back story to our hero and heroine before their affair began would have been helpful. Similarly, I liked that some of the conflicts between Cam, Clark and Arden were revealed over the course of the book, as it kept the plot moving nicely, but sometimes, knowing a bit more of what the characters knew would have enriched the story a bit more.

    However, as I got more involved in the story and its characters, the more I enjoyed watching Arden and Cam come to terms with each other and face the world together. Though I'm not into Cam's more colorful language or dirty take, it seemed to work between him and Arden. The emotional and sensuality in this book certainly kept the plot moving, and the final, intense scene together certainly guaranteed this book ended on a high note. I'd be interested to read more of Avril Ashton's work in the future, especially since meeting such a complex character like Cam!

  2. Guilty Pleasure Book Reviews 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 30th Jun 2012

    When Clark Mercer decides he’s done with his girlfriend Arden Windham, his twin brother, Cam, resolves to make her his. A stroke of luck helps him when he has to rescue her after she has a flat tire during a storm. Arden feels a little put back with Cam though because he’s served time in prison. Later on, we find out the real reason he served time and it makes you want to hate his twin even more.

    It moves quickly for these two to recognize that the two of them really are the same kind of people, they’ve both been held down by family. Each are seeking the love and affection of a parent. When they let their guard down, they realize that they are all they need for one another.

    I really liked Cam. He’s just enough of a bad boy to make you want to go out and find one for yourself. Arden is a little bit of the smart ass that every girl wants to be and it makes her very likeable. Even though this is a shorter type book, the author did a very good job in getting the reader a back story so that their motivations are understood.

    Immediately there is chemistry between these two. They are the epitome of the word hot! The sex is off the charts! If you like to read yours a little dirty and the words a little raunchy, then this is the book for you! Personally, I would love a second book, I think the author kind of leaves it open for that. Maybe someday?

    This is a really good, hot summer read. If you’re at the pool today, I recommend you grab it!

  3. Literary Nymphs Reviews 4 Star Review

    Posted by on 29th May 2012

    She’s tired of trying to please a father who sees her as an embarrassment and staying with a man who cheats. Things should be clear, now that Arden Windham has ended things with her cheating ex-boyfriend, but she’s more confused than ever. Her ex’s brother has always left Arden feeling unsettled because he treats her as if she killed his dog or something. Arden can’t stand the man, yet she also can’t stop lusting after him.

    Cameron Mercer is grumpy and anti-social. He’s alienated from the entire town and has a strained family relationship because of his time in jail. In his eyes, Arden is a spoiled little rich girl, but that doesn’t stop him from staking a claim on her. He’s wanted Arden the entire time she was with his brother and now is his chance to have her.

    Cameron refuses to stay away from Arden, regardless of how much Arden avoids him. They come together and things are more intense than either of them anticipated. Arden learns the truth behind Cameron’s bad-boy image and Cameron digs deeper into the broken relationship Arden has with his brother. Several people express their unhappiness about them being together but in the end, Cameron and Arden follow their hearts.

    Far From The Usual perfectly describes Arden and Cameron’s relationship. They seemed like extreme opposites but as I got to know their characters, I discovered they were so much alike. Both of them had spent way too long doing what was expected of them by their family. Arden’s father and Cameron’s brother are on my hit list. The entire town made assumptions about them that weren’t true. Arden was far from the pampered princess that Cameron saw her as and Cameron’s feelings extended to more than wanting marathon sex. He was a good man and I was surprised by how humble he really was. He had reasons for his gruff behavior, so I was able to forgive him. Cameron came to Arden’s defense when she needed him. Though at times, I admit I wanted to slap him myself. But when he poured all that emotion into his love for Arden, that made it all worth it. That is the kind of man Arden deserved and this is the kind of story that readers will remember after finishing it.

  4. You Gotta Read Reviews 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 21st May 2012

    “Far From The Usual” is a very sensual and steamy read, that will most definitely have you squirming in your seat and fanning yourself. The story was well worked out and was very pleasant to read and the characters were very fascinating. I loved Cameron’s character; he was dominant and very sexy in his behavior and dirty talk. When I read that he was an ex-con I though him to be the typical bad boy, but Cameron was so much more and had hidden depths. As did Arden, I first thought her to be the spoiled rich kid but she was anything but that. Both of them had very deep issues with their family. It felt really good to read that they could be themselves with each other, could feel accepted for who they truly were. I loved the hot and passionate attraction between Arden and Cameron, which lead to many steamy scenes.
    Also how Arden set Clark in his place. He’s the one that broke up with her and then he wanted her back? Did he even love her or was it really just about money? Either way Arden held her foot down and didn’t let him worm his way back in. Nevertheless I can’t help but hope for him to have his own story in which he may finally find a woman who will set him straight and help him see the importance of love and family and that money or standard isn’t everything.

    There were a few grammar mishaps I came across while reading. And Arden’s personality changed a bit too much for my liking. She cussed much more than she did at the beginning, which made her look like the juvenile her father thought her of. But other than that, was “Far From The Usual” a very sensual and sexy read with underlying issues, it’s one book that I could read over and over again.

  5. Night Owl Romance Reviews 4 Star Review

    Posted by on 6th May 2012

    I had to read this book because I loved the premise. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Cam Mercer, the twin brother of Arden's ex, is not his identical twin.

    The book was an enjoyable, and certainly a hot read, but I would have liked to see more character development for Arden. She isn't the typical spoiled rich girl, that she is presented to the reader as being. Yes, she is supported financially by her rich father, but she wasn't raised by him, nor does she have the snobbish attitude you would expect.

    So though the book tries to contrast the two main characters as opposites, with Arden as the society beauty and Cam as the 'bit of rough' ex con, they actually have more in common than not.

    I did find that some of the language, which was supposed to be sex talk, came off as just crude. I prefer my romances to be hot and explicit, but found that note offputting.

    Overall the romance worked on all levels, but I found I wanted to know more about Arden, yes, we know she wanted to 'do' Cam, but what about the rest of her life?

    Cam as the sexy mechanic who doesn't hold back with how much he wants Arden, certainly has the reader understand exactly what Arden sees in him.

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