The Truth About Lilly by Christy McKee – Exclusive Excerpt and Giveway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Christy will be awarding a $40 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


Lilly Talbot never imagined she would be starting her life over again. Losing her good name for something she didn’t do has driven her to move into an old lake house she inherited in Vermont. Upon arrival, she is shocked. Half the roof is about to slide into Lake Champlain. Even more upsetting, the man who can fix it will only agree if she trades him room and board for his labor. What will the good people of Haley think of her sharing a house with the handsome bachelor?

A man with a past…

Connor “Mac” McQueen, once one of the infamous Whiz Kids of Wall Street, spent three years in prison for insider trading. Only one thing sustained him during his time inside, the thought of owning Point Cottage, a home he’d fallen in love with years ago. He plans to turn the house into a stunning showcase for his eco-friendly home construction business.

Secrets and lies…

Now someone’s trying to drive Lilly from her home. Is it someone from her past? Mac has secrets of his own– that could ruin lives if revealed. But if Lilly and Mac are to have a future together they must first delve into the past for answers and accept some difficult truths about each other. Only then, will they know if true love is in their hearts.

Enjoy this exclusive excerpt:

Lilly closed the beveled glass doors behind her and leaned against them. Now she could cross another major item off her “to do” list. All of the antiques, oriental rugs and art were loaded on a truck on the way to Mendenhall Galleries, Atlanta’s premier auction house. The remainder of the furnishings, the ones she could afford to keep, would be moved to the lake house in Vermont next month.

For the first time in two years, she felt solidly in control of her own future. She’d clawed her way out of the financial black hole her late husband had dug for himself, and her, too. Lilly straightened and looked around the massive marble foyer. It was impressive even by Atlanta’s standards and graced one of the finest mansions in Buckhead. But stripped of its costly furnishings, the cavernous room seemed as impersonal as an empty stage. The three matching Bohemian crystal chandeliers spilled their light onto the barren white marble floor, awaiting the next cast of players .

The heavy brass pineapple door knocker thudded behind her. Thinking the driver had forgotten something she opened the door and was stunned when a TV reporter jammed a microphone in her face. Sweet Jesus, what was this? Lilly was rooted to the marble floor, not able to move or articulate a word.

The well groomed, blonde reporter didn’t hesitate for a heartbeat and wedged herself in the doorway. “Mrs. Talbott, is it true you are the daughter of the notorious Black Jack Kendall?” Without waiting for an answer, she forged ahead. “Will you attend your father’s prison wedding later this week?”

Even though Lilly’s mouth refused to form cohesive speech, her mind processed her thoughts just fine. Hell no, she wasn’t going to the wedding.

Self-preservation taking over, Lilly rousted and went on the offensive. “Get out of my house, now. Who do you think you are forcing your way in here?” When she tried to close the door in the determined woman’s over eager face, the reporter brazenly refused to budge. The cameraman had the good sense to remain on the porch.

“Do you deny your maiden name is Kendall and your father is Black Jack Kendall?”

Lilly wasn’t about to deny or confirm anything. Furious that she’d been outed after so many cautious years, she finally succeeded in pushing the offensive woman out the door. The reporter made a show of grabbing on to one of the Greek porch columns as if Lilly had physically assaulted her.

“Well,” the reporter spoke into the camera with undisguised glee, “like father like daughter. It appears Black Jack Kendall’s daughter has been living the high life right under our noses, Atlanta. Perhaps she’s already cashed in her father’s stash of nine million dollars.”

Lilly staggered back, absorbing the painful shudder that racked her body. Suddenly it was seventeen years ago and she was a teenager back in her small hometown with another eager reporter thrusting a microphone in her face. It was the day Lilly’s world crumbled around her and she lost everything.

Forcing herself back to the present, she ignored the bitter taste of bile rising in her throat and heaved the door shut, sliding the dead bolt home. Her sandals clicked like angry staccatos across the marble foyer to the thick white carpet as she pounded up the stairs and down the hall to the master suite, her refuge. However, today the soft green sanctuary she’d so lovingly created failed to soothe her.

This invasion was undoubtedly the handiwork of her hateful mother-in-law. Marjorie Talbot had resented Lilly from the day she married her son. Now that the woman had lost her only son, she was on a hell bent vendetta to destroy Lilly socially and professionally. If exposing Lilly’s well hidden identity was her opening salvo, she hated to think what was next in Marjorie’s battle plan.

“Mrs. Talbot,” Flavia, her loyal housekeeper and wife of the gardener, appeared in the doorway. “All those people outside. Should I call the police?”

Lilly looked out the window. Seeing three TV news vans parked along the curb, an angry, unladylike curse escaped her. She thanked heaven her stepdaughter was already in Boston for her freshman year in college.

Lilly reined in her scattered emotions and manufactured a reassuring smile for the compact little woman in front of her. She wouldn’t have survived the last two years following Glen’s death if not for the kindness and compassion of Flavia and Caesar. “No, we’ll ignore them for now. My plans, however, have changed. I’m leaving for Vermont tonight.”

Flavia looked at her in shock. “But Mrs. Talbot, it’s too soon. We are not ready.”

She took Flavia’s small hands in her own. “Flavia, I can’t tell you how much your loyalty and friendship have meant to me. I don’t want you and Caesar to worry. Mr. Towne will pay your salaries until the end of next month. The new owners want you to stay and work for them.”

The small woman shook her head. “No, Mrs. Lilly. Is too fast. We should stick to your schedule for the next month, no?” She kneaded her white apron with her hands. “This is not like you to make quick decisions.”

After fourteen years, dear Flavia knew her well. Lilly never made irrational spur of the moment decisions, and yet she’d just made a monumental one.

About the Author:

Christy McKee began her career in TV news and eventually found her way into advertising and finally fiction. She believes a good story should be about characters who win your heart, sometimes move you to tears and occasionally make you laugh. As a reader, Christy hopes you’ll be swept into her characters’ lives enjoy getting to know them, experience the challenges they endure and be with them when they come out on the other side.

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  1. stacey dempsey says:

    Thank you I enjoyed the exclusive excerpt

  2. Thanks for hosting!

  3. love finding new to me authors!

  4. Nikolina says:

    Enjoyed reading the excerpt, thank you!

  5. The romantic cover is my favorite part!

  6. Thank you so much for having me today. It’s a beautiful day in South Carolina. What’s it like where you are?

  7. The cover looks beautiful and thanks for having the giveaway.

  8. Rita Wray says:

    I enjoyed the excerpt, thank you.

  9. Enjoyed reading this excerpt. The story sounds like it has some intense moments.

  10. Ashley & Rita,
    You are welcome. Good luck in the giveaway.

  11. I’m intrigued by the excerpt!

  12. Oh wow. Talk about a stressful time – and a witch of a mother in law!

  13. Nurmawati Djuhawan says:

    love the blurb..
    thx u for the chance 🙂

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