Curse-breaker or heartbreaker? First look at Rosie Danan's supernatural rom-com, Do Your Worst
Who doesn't loves a romance story with witty banter and a "unbreakable curse" thrown into the mix?
If you're looking for an Indiana Jones meets enemies-to-lovers meets supernatural rom-com than we got the book for you. The Roommate (2020) author Rosie Danan is back at it again with Do Your Worst. Read an excerpt and see the cover below!
Do Your Worst Synopsis
When occult expert Riley Rhodes is hired to break the curse on an infamous Scottish castle, she thinks it's just the break she needs to turn her family's knack for the supernatural into a legitimate business. Her efforts are thwarted by handsome archeologist Clark Edgeware, who immediately tries to get her fired. Fresh off a scandal, Clark refuses to let a so-called "curse-breaker" ruin his last chance at professional redemption. When he fails to have Riley fired from the excavation site, he makes it his mission to make her life miserable, but the pesky curse keeps finding ways to land the pair on top of each other instead of apart. As it turns out, the only thing they do better than fight is fool around. If they're not careful, by the end of all this, more than the castle will end up in ruins.
Do Your Worst Excerpt
A bell chimed over the front door of the pub, pulling Riley's attention from the first stirrings of a mental pep talk.
Holy s---. Her breath caught in her throat at the sight of the man who entered.
Everything from the harsh line of his jaw to the broad stretch of his shoulders pulled tight with a specific kind of tension that seemed…tortured. Even though that didn't make sense. The expression on his face was perfectly neutral; he wasn't limping or dripping blood.
As he walked in and moved toward the bar, Riley had the sudden, visceral memory of a painting she'd seen once. She was far from a fine art lover, but back when she was in the sixth grade, her whole class had gone to the Philadelphia Museum of Art as a field trip.
Riley had found the whole day unforgivably boring—none of the work moved her. Butt hen she'd come to this one massive canvas, and it was like her feet sprouted roots into the marble floor.
All these years later, she still remembered how the artist had captured an angel suspended mid fall. She'd felt the momentum of that still image within her own body. The way anguish strained his face and form until his plunge became like ballet, like poetry.
She felt it again—the painting feeling—now, looking at this stranger. Heat licked up her spine, as swift and sudden as wildfire.
Looking back, that painting had probably been some kind of sexual awakening. For even though the man at the bar was fully dressed, coat and all, the angel had been naked, his modesty preserved in profile.
Riley had found herself fascinated by his body, the high contrast of strength and vulnerability. Sharp ribs and taut thighs versus how tender the pink soles of his feet had looked.How those massive indigo wings had folded as he fell.
Looking at this real-life man who reminded her of an artist's rendering, Riley realized something new about the painting.
It wasn't the despair in the pose that had drawn her in. It was the defiance.
It was that even in the act of falling, the angel had flung up one arm, fingers curling, reaching for the only home he'd ever known, refusing to go quietly, while the other arm remained tucked to his breast, protecting his heart.
The man with his dark head bowed over the bar looked similarly braced for impact. For the fight that inevitably awaited a fallen angel on land.
What did it say about Riley that his weary resilience called to her? Probably something twisted.
Since she was someone trying to make curse breaking into a career, it wasn't a great mystery that Riley wanted to save people, but she feared the parts of herself that wanted to be saved in return.
"Who is that?" She hadn't meant to speak the words out loud, but Eilean heard and answered anyway.
"Oh. Him. Ever since he came to town, he's been causing quite the fuss."
Wait, that guy lived here? Forget the curse; that should be Torridon's new claim to fame.
Though if the unimpressed look on Eilean's face was anything to go by, she was seemingly immune to this guy's whole thing.
Riley leaned forward, lowering her voice. "What do you know about him?"
"He's English." Eilean moved to restock some napkins. "Like the land developers who hired you, though blessedly he doesn't work for them. He comes here most nights, so he probably can't cook. And he's an archaeologist working on—"
"An archaeologist." Riley's ears perked up. "Oh, that's perfect. I just watched a movie about archaeology on the plane!"
Eilean's slate brows came together. "…So?"
"So, that can be my in!" Riley didn't remember all the details of the film—she'd nodded off a bit in the middle—but it had been based on a true story. The main character was ripped directly from the pages of a best-selling memoir after some major film studio purchased the guy's life rights.
"Wait." Eilean stopped working. "You're not going to hit on him, are you?"
"I mean, yeah," Riley said, "but, like, respectfully."
She didn't make a habit of picking up people in bars, but she certainly didn't have a problem striking up a conversation with someone she found attractive. And this guy was hot like burning—even dressed in the repressive layers of a Ralph Lauren ad, with a button-up under his sweater and a tweed blazer over the top.
"I don't think that's such a good idea." Eilean began to shake her head. "The assignment you took—"
"Oh, don't worry." Riley could already tell that Eilean saw everyone under this roof as her responsibility. "I'm not on the clock until tomorrow morning."
She didn't mix business and pleasure at home, but that was mostly because she didn't want to pollute her potential client pool with former flames. Since her first trip to Scotland was likely to be her last, that didn't seem like an issue here.
"Do I have anything—" She bared her teeth at Eilean.
"No," Eilean said after a quick glance, and then, crossing her arms, "I suppose, in your line of work, you know your way around trouble."
"Huh?" She'd gotten distracted looking at the guy again. Before tonight, she hadn't even known they made cheekbones that sharp.
"Never mind." Eilean ushered her forward. "Good luck, curse breaker."
From DO YOUR WORST published by arrangement with Berkley, an imprint of Penguin Random HouseLLC. Copyright © 2022 by Rosie Danan.
Do Your Worst by Rosie Danan will be available on November 14, 2023.
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