Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Best Day Ever by Kaira Rouda ~ Excerpt & Giveaway


I glance at my wife as she climbs into the passenger seat, and I am bursting with confidence. Today will be everything I’ve promised her…and more…

Paul Strom has the perfect life: a glittering career as an advertising executive, a beautiful wife, two healthy boys and a big house in a wealthy suburb. And he’s the perfect husband: breadwinner, protector, provider. That’s why he’s planned a romantic weekend for his wife, Mia, at their lake house, just the two of them. And he's promised today will be the best day ever.

But as Paul and Mia drive out of the city and toward the countryside, a spike of tension begins to wedge itself between them and doubts start to arise. How much do they trust each other? And how perfect is their marriage, or any marriage, really? 

Forcing us to ask ourselves just how well we know those who are closest to us, Best Day Ever crackles with dark energy, spinning ever tighter toward its shocking conclusion. In the bestselling, page-turning vein of The Couple Next Door and The Dinner, Kaira Rouda weaves a gripping, tautly suspenseful tale of deception and betrayal dark enough to destroy a marriage…or a life.




An excerpt from BEST DAY EVER by Kaira Rouda

I glance at my wife as she climbs into the passenger seat, sunlight bouncing off her shiny blond hair like sparklers lit for the Fourth of July, and I am bursting with confidence. Everything is at it should be.
            Here we are, just the two of us, about to spend the weekend at our lake house. Today represents everything I’ve worked for, that we have built together. The sun blasts through my driver’s side window with such intensity I feel the urge to hold my hand up to the side of my face to shield my eyes, even though my sunglasses are dark and should be doing the job. Under any other circumstances, on any other day, they would be, I know. But today, something is different between us; some strange tension pulses through the air of the car’s interior. I cannot see it, but it’s here. I’d like to name it. Discover its source and eliminate it.
….
            And now we’re getting on the road. Mia turns toward me and smiles. She has a perfect smile: half-moon-shaped, with glistening white teeth. My smile is more of a rectangle; no matter how hard I try, I appear to be smirking, I know that. But my teeth are perfect, thanks to the cosmetic dentist. I grin back.
            She loves me so much, and of course the same can be said for me. We’ve been together almost ten years now. We know each other’s best qualities, and we know each other’s dark sides. Although to be quite honest about it, I’m not sure Mia has what you’d call a dastardly alter ego. Her dark side is simply grumpy, and it typically only appears when she is tired, or when one of our boys faces a rough patch. For my part, I wonder if Mia thinks I have a dark side. Most likely, as far as she knows, I am just her dear loving husband.
            Today, though, this morning, right now, she is exuding energy; it oozes from her pores, from her flawless face. It’s the cause of the strange pulsing between us, I decide.
            “You seem wound up, honey,” I say. I want to pat her leg and tell her to relax but I don’t. Despite her odd mood she is still beautiful, almost perfect in every way.
            “Do I? I guess I’m just excited,” she says, confirming my assessment while stretching her hands toward the front windshield. The diamond from her wedding ring flashes in the overbright sunshine as if imitating her energy.
            “Me, too. But we’ve got a long drive ahead of us, so try to relax. Let’s make today the best day ever.” I attempt to add the proper lilt in my voice. I need her to believe I am just as happy and carefree as she is. That driving up to our lake house for the first time this season is the most exciting thing I could ever imagine doing on any day, ever.

© 2017 Kaira Rouda, with permission from Graydon  House 
Praise for Best Day Ever by Kaira Rouda
“Clever pacing and an unreliable and chillingly unrepentant narrator.”
—Kimberly McCreight, New York Times bestselling author of Reconstructing Amelia and The Outliers

“Kaira Rouda's BEST DAY EVER is a breath of fresh air. Move over Kepnes' Joe Goldberg, there's a new sociopathic voice in town. Paul Strom is irreverent, arrogant, psychotic and yet, utterly addicting. Who will win the Lakeside showdown, Mia or Paul? You'll whip through the pages to find out. Highly entertaining and truly surprising!“
—Kate Moretti, New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Year

“Kaira Rouda spins a sinister tale of a disintegrating marriage that raises the bar on the unreliable narrator. Deliciously diabolical and highly readable, BEST DAY EVER kept me flipping the pages with anticipation and fascination. Unputdownable!”
—A. J. Banner, USA Today bestselling author of The Twilight Wife

“We read BEST DAY EVER in one sitting—ripping through the pages with a breathless urgency. The book takes place over just twenty-four-hours, making you desperate to know: what exactly does the seemingly perfect Paul Strom have planned for his wife when he takes her away for the weekend? Here's what we can tell you: whatever you think it is, you’re wrong. BEST DAY EVER isn’t even close to what you’re expecting. BEST DAY EVER is a creepy, spine-tingling and utterly addictive tale of domestic suspense.”
—Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke, bestselling authors of The Good Widow

"Riveting and provocative, BEST DAY EVER is a gripping suspense that plays with your mind and makes you wonder how well you truly know your spouse. Accomplished author Kaira Rouda deftly navigates a day in the life of Paul and Mia Strom where what appears to be a perfect marriage is not all what it seems. Fast-paced, dark, and slightly disturbing, you won't be able to put this book down until its jaw-dropping ending. Rouda kept me glued to my seat. Absolutely brilliant!”
—Kerry Lonsdale, Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Everything We Keep

"His voice will grip you. Through self-conscious charm and a chilling wit, Rouda's narrator creates laugh-out-loud moments that will feel like guilty pleasures in light of the story's high-impact conclusion. This may well be the most entertaining read of your year.”
—Kathryn Craft, award-winning author of The Far End of Happy

“A tensely written, shocking book that will hold readers on the edge of their seats to the very last page.”
—Publishers Weekly

Publishing Praise for Best Day Ever
“Paul Strom is the ultimate in unreliable narrators, and his singular perspective makes BEST DAY EVER a roller-coaster ride of twists and turns you’ll never see coming. Unforgettable.”
—Loriana Sacilotto, Executive Vice President of Global Editorial, Harlequin

“A gripping and provocative tale of a marriage that isn’t what it seems, narrated by a man whose secrets will keep you guessing until the end. I loved it.”
—Dianne Moggy, Vice President of Editorial, Harlequin

“BEST DAY EVER is a psychological thriller narrated by a creepy, delusional husband who thinks he has the perfect life, but not all is as it seems. I read this page-turner in one sitting as I could not wait to get to the shocking ending. This is a book that you won’t want to put down until you get to the very end!”
—Kim Gombar, HarperCollins TeleSales Representative

The perfect couple is the perfect illusion.

In her upcoming novel BEST DAY EVER (Harlequin/Graydon House; September 19, 2017; Hardcover; $26.99; ISBN: 978-1525811401), one of the highly anticipated launch titles for new Harlequin imprint Graydon House, USA Today bestselling author Kaira Rouda has written a brilliant and chilling page-turner that explores what goes on behind the closed doors of seemingly perfect lives.

In BEST DAY EVER, Paul Strom has the perfect life: a glittering career as an advertising executive, a beautiful wife, two healthy boys and a big house in a wealthy suburb. And he's the perfect husband: breadwinner, protector, provider. That's why he's planned a romantic weekend for his wife, Mia, at their lake house, just the two of them. And he's promised today will be the best day ever.

But as Paul and Mia drive out of the city and toward the countryside, a spark of tension begins to burn between them and doubts start to arise. How perfect is their marriage, or any marriage, really? How much do they trust each other? Is Paul the person he seems to be? And what are his real plans for their weekend at the cottage?

The novel is already receiving terrific advance praise. Wall Street Journal bestselling author Kerry Lonsdale, who wrote Everything We Keep, says: "Riveting and provocative, Best Day Ever is a gripping suspense that plays with your mind and makes you wonder how well you truly know your spouse. Accomplished author Kaira Rouda deftly navigates a day in the life of Paul and Mia Strom where what appears to be a perfect marriage is not all what it seems. Fast-paced, dark, and slightly disturbing, you won't be able to put this book down until its jaw-dropping ending. Rouda kept me glued to my seat. Absolutely brilliant!”

Kathryn Craft, award-winning author of The Far End of Happy, says of Rouda’s protagonist, Paul Strom: “His voice will grip you. Through self-conscious charm and a chilling wit, Rouda's narrator creates laugh-out-loud moments that will feel like guilty pleasures in light of the story's high-impact conclusion. This may well be the most entertaining read of your year.”

Asked about what it was like to get into the mind of Paul, Rouda says, “I loved it! Does this sound strange? Paul appeared in my imagination one day as a multi-dimensional character with a very distinct point of view on the world. Coupled with research both in person and online about malignant narcissists, the story unfolded with ease. Paul is charming, intelligent, and completely in charge of the plot, and everyone involved in the story, or so he’ll tell you. The difference between who Paul says he is, and the reality of what is going on in their marriage was the fun of writing this tale of deception and betrayal. Oh, and don’t get me wrong, he did give me the creeps, but he has left a lasting impression.”

Forcing us to ask ourselves just how well we know those who are closest to us, BEST DAY EVER crackles with dark energy, spinning ever tighter toward its shocking conclusion. In the bestselling, page-turning vein of The Couple Next Door and The Dinner, Kaira Rouda weaves a gripping, tautly suspenseful tale of deception and betrayal dark enough to destroy a marriage…or a life.

Says Rouda about the inspiration for BEST DAY EVER: “One of my favorite ideas in literature to work with is the theme of what goes on behind closed doors of seemingly perfect lives. It always starts with a ‘what if’, doesn’t it? What if Paul isn’t what he seems? What if his promise of a special romantic weekend is anything but? Secret lives and unreliable narrators always have held my interest as both a reader and a writer.”

More About Kaira Rouda:

Kaira Rouda is a USA TODAY bestselling, multiple award-winning author of contemporary fiction. Her debut novel, Here, Home, Hope, was the Winner of the Indie Excellence Book Award in Mainstream/Literary Fiction, Winner of the USA Book Awards in the Women's Fiction category and received Honorable Mention in Mainstream/Literary Fiction for the Writer's Digest Book Awards. Her novel, The Goodbye Year, which was released in May 2016, was Redbook Magazine's “20 Best Books You Absolutely Must Read This Spring.” Kaira’s latest novel, Best Day Ever, is one of the major launch titles for Harlequin’s new imprint Graydon House, and will be available on September 19, 2017.

Kaira is also the author of Real You Incorporated: 8 Essentials for Women Entrepreneurs and the creator of Real Living, one of the nation’s most successful real estate brands and the first national women-focused brand in real estate. She has given speeches to both women and men’s entrepreneurial conferences and programs across the country on the power of women as consumers and in the world. Kaira was named Best Entrepreneur from the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, and was also recognized in Entrepreneur magazine’s inaugural Top 50 fastest-growing, women-led companies list.

In addition to her many entrepreneurial and literary accomplishments, Kaira is very active in both her native Ohio community and in her community in Southern California, where she now resides. Her philanthropic pursuits began when she founded Central Ohio’s first homeless shelter for families when she was twenty-five years old, and Kaira has since received numerous awards for her civic service.

Kaira’s family includes her husband of 28 years, her four kids, and her two spoiled dogs. She lives in Southern California and is at work on her next novel. After living in Columbus, Ohio, for most of her life, she now enjoys the beach whenever possible.

Connect with Kaira Rouda
Website: wwww.KairaRouda.com
Facebook: Facebook.com/KairaRoudaBooks
Twitter: @KairaRouda
Instagram: @KairaRouda
Pinterest: @KairaRouda



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2 comments:

  1. I've read The Goodbye Year. I can wait to read Best Day Ever!

    **Excuse my google name, my 9 year old thought it would be hilarious to change my name since he uses it and didn't want people to think he was a girl! Lol

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