Today’s feature post is the Review & Excerpt tour for Tierney Fowler’s newest release He Loves Me Not, available now!
Excerpt He Loves Me Not by Tierney Fowler
“Maggie, seriously, you have nothing to worry about. Stop obsessing.” Caroline batted Maggie’s hands away from where she had been pulling at the bottom of her cheerleading top. Despite the diet she’d been on for the past two weeks, she still looked like a cow in her uniform.
“I look disgusting. I can’t go out there.” Maggie managed to get out, her throat thick with tears. If she could hardly even look at herself in the mirror, how was the entire county going to watch her win homecoming queen tonight at the football game? They were going to laugh her off the stage.
“Then just fake it till you make it, Mags. Isn’t that what your mom always tells you?”
Maggie managed to smile at her best friend in the mirror. Her momma did say that. And it was the truth. Even when Maggie felt like she was at her most disgusting, she could just pretend to be confident, and it would eventually become real.
“I think I’m just nervous. About…about them announcing queen at the game and not at the dance.” Maggie tugged at her top again before Caroline could see.
“Why be nervous? We all know you’re going to win. Isn’t it, like, your legacy?” Even if her words sounded bitter, Maggie knew Caroline wasn’t angry. Their friendship had never been competitive. Plus, Caroline didn’t really understand the South’s obsession with tiaras, while Maggie’s momma had already cleared out a space in the trophy case for the crown Maggie was sure to get.
“Yeah, I just…I don’t know. I’m freaking out.” Sick with nerves, she tried to distract herself with applying another coat of mascara on top of her fake eyelashes.
Caroline watched for a minute, and then she slid off the counter in the locker room where the cheerleaders always primped before the game. “About the game? Or…about Bobby?”
Maggie nodded, trying not to let the welling tears ruin her makeup. “I just…I wish he’d…” She trailed off, her shoulders shaking from the effort to keep from sobbing.
“Oh, Mags.” Caroline wrapped her arms around Maggie’s shoulders and squeezed.
Bobby had been distant the past few weeks, and Maggie couldn’t figure out what was going on. The other day, she’d been telling him all about the new pageant dresses that had come into Miss Patsy’s on King Street, and he’d actually snapped at her. “Maggie, there are more important things in life than stupid beauty pageants.” He hadn’t actually used the word stupid, but another word that Maggie couldn’t even think about without blushing. The entire sentence slapped like a physical blow. He never cursed like that around her.
Maggie remembered sitting back in his car, suddenly sick to her stomach. There was more to her than just pageants or shopping. She did a lot of great work in the community, and she got good grades and even donated brand new clothes—with the tags still attached!—to the Junior League’s annual charity drive.
Bobby had ignored the tears in her eyes and just aggressively shifted gears without a word.
Even thinking about that night made Maggie want to start crying all over again. “Why won’t he just talk to me? I don’t know what I did wrong.” Maggie’s breath started coming in shuddering gasps. She was supposed to be on the field in a few minutes, and she was a nervous, crying, raccoon-eyed wreck. That night Bobby had yelled at her wasn’t even the worst part. In the past week, he’d canceled two dates with her, missed a few lunches, and ignored all her texts—even though he totally had the read receipts on.
Even Tommy thought the situation was weird. He’d pulled her aside the other day after football practice, when Bobby had stormed past them without a second glance. “What’s going on, Mags?” They’d sat on the bottom row of the bleachers and whispered, aware that people were trying to listen in for any juicy gossip.
Maggie had sighed, hiding her face in her hands. “I don’t know. I was hoping he’d said something to you.”
Tommy had shaken his head. “We haven’t hung out in weeks. He’s always busy now.”
“I think I did something really bad.” Even with everyone watching them—while pretending to not watch them—the familiar tears started welling up again. “I wish he’d just tell me. I’ll change. I’ll do whatever he wants me to do.”
Tommy had put his arm around her shoulders and squeezed. “It’s not you, Mags. Trust me. You’re the best.”
Maggie had beamed through her tears. Flattery really did get people anywhere. “You think?”
“I know. Just give it some time. Maybe he’s just nervous about the football scouts.”
That had seemed like the perfect explanation, and Maggie had let it go for a few hours until Bobby had deactivated his Facebook account. Why would he go and do a thing like that? Now, instead of being in a relationship with a living, breathing—okay, well, virtually living and breathing—Bobby, now his name was just there in black text—like she’d made it all up.
“Maggie,” Caroline was saying as she leaned back from where she’d been touching up Maggie’s makeup. “I said I’m all done. Now you look even better than before.” She smiled, pink lips very bright against her dark skin. It was a daring look, but Caroline could pull off brave fashion choices way easier than Maggie could.
Maggie turned around to look in the mirror and studied herself. Her dark red hair was perfectly curled, and her green eyes were glowing, if not a bit bloodshot. She lifted her chin and practiced her best regal queen pose.
Surely Bobby would come to his senses once he saw how pretty she looked. They belonged together. The cheerleader and the quarterback. The king and the queen. It’d all work out. It had to.
About He Loves Me Not by Tierney Fowler
In the game of love, everyone roots for the underdog. You know, that girl-next-door type who wears glasses and has a shy smile and who falls for the most popular boy in school…she’s the hero of every story. And when the shy girl takes off her glasses and the quarterback kisses her and the crowd roars and the movie fades to black, people sit back and are satisfied.
But what about the cheerleader? The one he dumps at the fifty-yard line and the one who runs off the field humiliated and sobbing? What about her feelings? What about her?
He Loves Me Not tells the story of what happens after the cheerleader is denied her fairy tale ending. Maggie’s life was perfect–she had perfect friends, perfect parents, and a perfect boyfriend. But when she’s abruptly dumped in front of the entire county by that perfect boyfriend, her life falls apart. With her clique, her friends, and her social standing obliterated, Maggie is resigned to a lonely, humiliating senior year of high school.
…at least until she meets AJ Abbott, a musician who breaks every rule her mother ever taught her. He has no college degree. He wants to be a rockstar. He wears entirely too much black and leather.
But despite their differences, Maggie is slowly drawn into AJ’s rock and roll lifestyle, and she’ll be forced to choose which is more important–clinging to her nonexistent popularity or learning that maybe there’s more to her than her beauty queen tiaras and cheerleader pom-poms.
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About The Author
The long lost Wakefield twin. Blair’s head minion. The BSC party planner. The original Pink Ranger. Stephanie Tanner’s BFF.
In addition to crafting young adult and new adult novels, Tierney Fowler works as an IT consultant by day and a style blogger by night. She resides in Northern Virginia near four shopping malls, counts leopard as her favorite color, and once shot a reality TV show pilot…that never went anywhere.
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