Excerpt: Shine With Me - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

Sabrina Harrison hates being famous. She walked away from show business, from the flashing bulbs and prying eyes years ago, and is happy in her rural Oregon home, dedicating her life to her non-profit.

Until Hollywood calls, offering her the role of a lifetime. In more than ten years, she’s never felt the pull to return to the business that shunned her, but this role is everything Sabrina’s ever longed for.

Now she has to get in shape for it.

Benjamin Demarco’s gym, Sound Fitness, continues making a name for itself in Seattle. And now, he finds himself with the task of training Sabrina, getting her in shape for the role of her life. He’s trained hundreds of women. This is his job. So why does he suddenly see Sabrina as more than just another client? His hands linger on her skin, his breath catches when she’s near.

He knows better. Soon, she’ll be gone, living her life. A life that doesn’t include him.

Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you’ll enjoy each one as much as we do.

Book Type:

Contemporary Romance

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Excerpt: Shine With Me
By Kristen Proby

Excerpt: Shine With Me

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kristen Proby comes a new story in her With Me In Seattle series. SHINE WITH ME is out tomorrow, but you can read an excerpt below right now!

It’s Monday morning, and I’ve been awake for an hour. I’m on my second cup of coffee and just bit into my bagel when the doorbell rings.

He’s prompt, I’ll give him that.

All I know is that my new trainer’s name is Ben. That’s it. This should be interesting.

I open the door and am immediately under intense male scrutiny—which I expect from a trainer.

He’s going to be getting me into shape.

What I don’t expect are the long silence and the gaping mouth.

“Hi, I’m Ben.”

I shut the door in his face and turn away, dialing Luke’s number as I walk across the room.

I hear the door open behind me, but I don’t turn around. I pace and mumble, waiting for Luke to answer.

Sure, gawk at the washed-up movie star, you jerk.

“Hello?” Luke says.

“Seriously, Luke?”

Suddenly, the phone is taken out of my hand, and Ben ends the call, earning a glare from me.

“I wasn’t staring because you’re a movie star. I was staring because I wasn’t expecting you to be quite this gorgeous.”

I prop my hands on my hips. Seems I might be speechless now, and that doesn’t happen often.

“I’m Ben,” he repeats.


He looks me up and down again as my phone rings in his hand. To my surprise, he answers.

“Hey Luke, Ben here. She’s fine.” He passes me the phone with a smirk on his cocky lips, and I press it to my ear.


“Everything okay there?”

“Yeah, false alarm, I guess.”

“Okay, let me know if you need anything. Have a good day.”

He hangs up, and I slip my phone into my pocket, then turn and lead Ben to the kitchen. Mostly, I have to look away from him so I don’t make a fool of myself. Because the man is hot with a capital H.

I take a bite of my bagel and watch in horror as Ben takes my plate and dumps the uneaten portion into the trash.

“Uh, that was my breakfast.”

“That isn’t on your list of approved foods,” he replies and sets a bag I didn’t even notice on my counter. “But I brought supplies for a day or two until we can go over your diet, and I can have the chef start cooking your food.”

“I have a chef?”

“Of course.”

“Luke doesn’t mess around, does he?”

“No. And neither do I. So, let’s get down to business.”

I sit on the stool by the island and watch as Ben starts pulling containers of food out of the bag.

“First, we need to chat,” he says as he stows some things in the fridge. “I want to make sure we’re on the same page and have the same goals in mind.”

“I have some rules,” I begin. “And I don’t bend well on them.”

“Okay, tell me.”

He leans on the counter, and the flex of muscles in his forearms does things to me.

Focus, Rina.

 “I don’t starve myself.”

His eyes narrow. “You’re going to have so much food to eat, you won’t know what to do with yourself.”

I nod, relieved.

His brow creases. “Wait. What does this stem from?”

My eyes whip up to his. “None of your business.”

“It’s absolutely my business, Sabrina. If you have food issues, I need to know.”

“I don’t. Not anymore. I was anorexic for a long time when I was in the business. I guess it doesn’t matter if I tell you that. It was in every tabloid for years.”

He tips his head to the side, watching me. “And how are you now?”

“I’m firmly on the path away from starvation, and I actually like myself again., I’m not going back to that dark place.”

“Good. Because I have plenty of food planned for you, it’s just not bagels. Actually, there won’t be many carbs in your diet. There will be some because we all need some, but you’ll be on a protein and veggie-heavy plan. You’re not vegan or vegetarian, are you?”

“If I am?”

He sighs. “It’s doable, it just gets trickier. But I can work with it.”

“I’m not. I just wanted to see what your answer was.”

“Okay, let’s go over this list, and I’ll fix you a breakfast burrito.”

“I can have burritos?” I feel my face light up at the idea. I’m obsessed with Mexican food.

“My version of them, yes.”

“Why do I think our versions are different?”

“Because they most likely are. But don’t worry. You’re in good hands.”

I’ll be the judge of that.

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