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Ashlee Mallory | Feeding my Addiction to HGTV and Carter Oosterhouse

January 24, 2015


Who said addictions were unhealthy? I for one have to credit my own addiction for all things HGTV—or anything that had a good home renovation project on it—as the inspiration for my new book, HER BACKUP BOYFRIEND. Heck, well before HGTV and TLC were on the scene, I watched dozens of Bob Villa projects on good old PBS, even if the progress of those projects could be like watching glue dry. Literally.

But later, it was those delicious moments on shows like TLC’s Trading Spaces that really left an impact. You know, right around the time they cued the hot carpenter guy—remember a young Carter Oosterhouse?—to arrive on the scene in faded denim and an oh-so-tight t-shirt clinging to a taut upper torso that sent my mind running to less than wholesome images. It was those guys, with their quiet confidence and surprisingly sharp wit that always, at least for me, stole the show.

My new book, HER BACKUP BOYFRIEND, is about a strait-laced ambitious woman, Kate, who is trying to manage her own home renovation project while staying ahead of the game at work and not falling apart at the news of her ex-boyfriend’s engagement. Enter Dominic, the sexy carpenter with a teasing sense of humor who Kate hires to help with her renovation and, eventually, to play pretend boyfriend. It was tremendous fun to write this story and imagine Dominic playing havoc in Kate’s orderly life and making her question everything she thought was important to her. Tight torso hugging shirt sometimes optional.

Years later and with TLC’s Trading Spaces just a fond memory, I still have that addiction to a good home renovation project and seeing the untapped potential in what looks like to any sane person, a terrifying house of horrors. And I’m grateful to all the other home improvement nuts like me whose obsession had created a market for so many awesome shows like those on HGTV.  In fact, I’m currently obsessed with Fixer Upper right now, which if you haven’t watched, I definitely urge you to program it into your DVR stat. It’s so much fun.

And perhaps, if you’re looking for a new, hot sexy book boyfriend, then maybe pick up HER BACKUP BOYFRIEND and tell me you didn’t fall in love with Dominic. Just a little bit. I know I did.


One little white lie leads to more than she planned…

Straight-laced lawyer Kate Matthews always plays by the rules. But when her ex gets engaged and a big promotion is on the line at work, she blurts out that she has a new boyfriend. And now that she’s proved she “has a life” outside of work, everything is perfect. Except for one teeny little detail―there is no boyfriend. And now Kate’s liable for her little white lie…

Dominic Sorensen is hot, charming, and very definitely not Kate’s type. But not only does Dominic want to help Kate renovate her home, he’s also willing to play “boyfriend.” All he wants in return is a little pro bono work for his sister. Now instead of Mr. Right, Kate has a delectable Mr. Fix-It-Right―and some unbelievable sexual chemistry. And if falling for Dominic is a breach of contract, Kate is guilty as charged…’

About Ashlee Mallory

Ashlee was thirteen when she discovered her first Kathleen E. Woodiwiss book hidden away in her mom’s closet. After two days of staying home “sick” from school to finish it, she was hooked. Her rabid love for romance has continued ever since, and after a misadventure in the world of law, she finally settled into her dream job of writing about people finding their happily ever afters–the only stories worth reading, after all.

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