California Dreaming (The Davenports #1) Read Online Bella Andre

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Contemporary Tags Authors: Series: The Davenports Series by Bella Andre

Total pages in book: 113
Estimated words: 104820 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 524(@200wpm)___ 419(@250wpm)___ 349(@300wpm)

Meet the Davenport family! Six brothers and sisters who call picturesque Carmel-by-the-Sea home. Successful, brilliant, and passionate, the only thing they all still need is the perfect partner in love and life. 

Hotshot movie star Archer Davenport has never met a stunt he couldn’t ace, a challenge he couldn’t overcome, or a woman he couldn’t have. When he breaks his leg during a dangerous stunt, the production company insists on hiring a live-in caretaker for him. He refuses the help…until he meets Tessa Taylor. She’s not only caring and beautiful, she’s also as tough on him as a drill sergeant.

Tessa knows all about confident men. She used to be married to one and that didn’t go well. Her only solace is her painting, even if she has no talent, as her late husband always claimed. Her biggest problem on this job, however, is that sexy, magnetic Archer makes her toes curl with desire every time he’s near. She does everything she can to try to remain professional. But it gets harder and harder every day as she starts to fall for him—and for his amazing family—even though she knows she’ll have to leave him for her next client as soon as he’s fully recovered. 

Arch, however, has no plans to let Tessa disappear once his leg is fully recovered. In fact, as the sparks between them grow hotter and hotter, he’s determined to show Tessa that she’s not only the most incredible and loving woman he’s ever known, she’s also the most talented.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************

Chapter One

Archer Davenport gazed out at the beach below the town of Carmel-by-the-Sea and took a deep breath of the salt-tinged sea air. The waves were often huge, crashing into the shore, but today the water lapped gently on the sand. He didn’t have much time in town, and he craved a walk on the beach before he had to leave his favorite place on earth and head back to Hollywood.

He pulled off his shoes and socks, rolled up the cuffs of his jeans, and let his toes squish into the soft, golden sand, just the way he had for more than thirty of his thirty-four years. He loved Carmel, loved it more than anything he could think of, except for his family. Coming home for his dad’s sixty-fourth birthday party had given him the excuse he needed to get away from filming in LA for a couple of days.

Arch was at the point in his acting career where he could pick and choose his roles. At present, he was having the time of his life remaking a famous buddy Western with his real-life friend Smith Sullivan. Smith was playing the older, wiser gentleman train robber, while Arch was playing the younger, devil-may-care character who ran headfirst into danger and worried about the consequences later. Apart from the Western garb and the steam trains, it wasn’t so different from their relationship in real life.

He grinned, watching the dogs running free on one of the few truly dog-friendly beaches in the US. Somehow, without it being explicitly said, all of the dog owners made sure to pick up after their dogs and also knew to bring only friendly dogs that wouldn’t get into fights. Before Arch’s career had taken off, he used to love to come down to the beach to walk the family dog, Buster, and soak in the joy of watching dogs running with their ears flapping in the wind and their tails wagging as they met other dogs.

He knew a few of the people on the beach by sight and took the time to say quick hellos. In most places around the world, he needed to wear a ball cap and sunglasses so that he wasn’t constantly bombarded by requests for selfies. He was beyond grateful for his fans and knew it was the price he paid to be one of the hottest actors in Hollywood. But sometimes he just wanted to walk on the beach in peace. One of the best things about Carmel-by-the-Sea was that there were so many celebrities here—the legendary Clint Eastwood had been mayor for nearly a decade—and the town culture was to leave famous people alone. Amazingly, even the tourists mostly picked up that basic courtesy.

Just then, he heard the click of a smartphone camera and knew someone had caught on to his identity, but apart from that snatched photograph, he was left in peace. At least until a shaggy white dog spotted him, ran up fresh from the sea, and shook itself, depositing a spray of sandy seawater all over Arch. Then the dog dropped a slobbery red ball at his feet and barked an instruction for Arch to throw it.

Obeying the dog’s command, he picked up the ball and lobbed it into the edge of the surf. As the dog went careening after it, Arch kept walking, giving a cheerful wave to its owner.

Coming toward him was a sprightly older lady with a cast on her arm. He had known Margaret Percy all his life. She owned one of the historic fairy-tale cottages built by Hugh Comstock that was a couple of blocks back from the beach. Margaret was one of Arch’s favorite people in Carmel. In her early eighties, she was always off on some adventure or another. There might be a large age difference between them, but deep down they recognized each other as kindred souls.

They were both daredevils.

Margaret was walking with a much younger woman. A woman who made him feel like all the air had been sucked out of his lungs just from looking at her.

Arch mingled with celebrities every day. He worked with some of the most beautiful women in the world, all of whom had makeup, hair, costume, and lighting designers to enhance their looks. But all of those famous women left him cold. Whereas this one, with her blue jeans and navy hoodie, her dark hair pulled back in a simple ponytail, had something about her that drew him. She hadn’t done a thing to enhance her looks—in fact, the only thing on her face even close to makeup was a little gloss on her full lips. Her eyes were big and blue and framed by dark, spiky lashes.

And he couldn’t stop staring.

When she turned her gaze on him, he saw the moment that she recognized him, because her eyes widened ever so slightly. A moment later, however, she seemed to realize she was staring and looked toward the ocean.