Monday, April 15, 2024

Fighting for Irish by Gina L. Maxwell ~ #ForcedProximity #SportsRomance #Romance

He’ll fight for her life. She’ll fight for his love.

Fighting for Irish, an emotional, forced proximity, sports romance from New York Times bestselling author Gina L. Maxwell is now available with a stunning new look!

Boston MMA fighter Aiden "Irish" O'Brien hasn’t entered the octagon since accidentally taking another man's life. So when a friend calls in a favor to check on a young woman in trouble, Irish takes it as a chance at redemption and heads to Louisiana.

Kat MacGregor is in a race against time to settle her ex-boyfriend's twenty-thousand-dollar debt to a dangerous crime boss. Facing a dire ultimatum, Kat's ready to flee for her life when the mysterious new bouncer at her bar offers to let her hide out at his place.

While living together, they start to break down the walls of their troubled pasts, finding solace in each other's arms...and in his bed. But Irish hasn't told her the whole truth about who he is or why he comes home with new bruises every night. When his plan to pay off her debt by fighting in an underground MMA ring goes bad, Irish will need to call upon the deadly skills he locked away years ago to stop Kat from being sold to the highest bidder.

But saving her from the mob will be only half the battle. Because if Kat finds out he broke her trust, it could cost him the most important fight of his life––the one for her heart.

Start reading today!

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Keep reading for a look inside Fighting for Irish!

About the Book:

“Just Irish.”

No one down here, or anywhere, needed to know his real name. What was the point of leaving the past behind if every time you introduced yourself you invited it right back?

“Okay, then. Just Irish it is.” Flashing the smile that probably earned him plenty of tips, Johnny grabbed the Mason jar he’d just cleaned and filled it with ice and water from the soda gun. “So, where you from?”

Behind him, the poker gang exploded in obnoxious complaints. He peered over his shoulder. One man gestured so wildly while shouting suspicions his buddy had cheated that half his beer sloshed onto the floor a few feet from Aiden. Johnny hollered at them to settle down and mumbled to himself about another mess he’d have to clean up.

Aiden lifted the glass to his parched lips and tipped his head back until he’d drained every last drop of water. He exhaled with heavy relief and pushed it back, nodding a request for a refill.

“Boston,” he said finally. He should probably try to speak more than a couple syllables at a time if the goal was to strike up a conversation for info. But before he could give it a shot, he heard footsteps coming from the back hallway marked with a sign that read offices.

Pulling her long red hair into a ponytail, a waitress entered the main room and used a mirrored Miller sign hanging on the wall to finish the style.

She was…stunning.

The tightening in his gut, like he’d just been sucker punched in the solar plexus, caught him off guard. Aiden couldn’t think of the last time a female had made his body sit up and beg at first glance. Apparently, his dick had no such problem remembering and wanted to prove it.

Hoping he appeared casual, he placed his left boot on the metal footrest running the length of the bar so she couldn’t see how tight the crotch of his jeans had gotten.

She wasn’t classically beautiful. She didn’t bring to mind formal dresses, stiff up-dos, and dry champagne. More like sundresses, hair blowing in the summer breeze, and the sugary bite of a refreshing lemon—

Fuck. Aiden rubbed his fingers over his forehead. He must have heat stroke from the last few hours of his ride. Yeah, heat stroke sounded good. He’d go with that. The alternative—comparing a woman to something like lemonade—would mean the demise of his virility, and he could kiss his Man Card good-bye.

The living, breathing threat to his recent apathy regarding sex met his gaze in the mirror. She assessed him with a flick of her cool eyes. Something he thought might be mutual interest flared for a moment like a struck match before she doused the flame and looked away. She couldn’t have sent a clearer message than if she’d tattooed Not Interested on her forehead.

Feigning his own disinterest, he turned his attention back to his water, but he continued to study her from the corner of his eye. She turned and reached over the bar counter for the open beer Johnny must have set there in anticipation of her arrival. Lifting the neck of the bottle to her lips, she took several long pulls. Lucky fucking bottle.

Her body willowy and defined, she couldn’t have been taller than five-seven at most. She wore a logoed shirt just like Johnny, but hers had a plunging neckline that revealed the inner swells of her breasts. A stiff black skirt didn’t just hug her ass, it promoted it. The uniform was tight and meant to draw attention.

The wrong kind.

Images of drunken assholes pawing at her as she served them drinks flooded the space behind his eyes. Something he’d thought dead for years stirred in Aiden’s gut. His misguided sense to protect and defend where he had no right. Where this woman worked and the attention she attracted was no concern of his.

Actually, that’s exactly what she might be, dumbass. Your concern.

He recalled the description his friend had given him. Red hair, small, and covered in freckles. Looks like he might not need to make conversation with Johnny after all. She wasn’t close enough for him to see any freckles, but red hair stuck out like a domestic beer in an Irish pub.

“Hey, Johnny,” she said, “think we can claim a measles outbreak or something and shut down for the night?”

The man snorted. “Are you kidding? Lou would probably tell us to wear gloves and paper masks and keep on serving.”

Tying a small black serving apron with pockets around her waist, she sighed and said, “Then I guess we’ll just have to hope time goes fast and nothing gets broken tonight.”

“Your constant optimism is what I love best about you, Sydney,” Johnny said.

Damn. Wrong name.

She gave Johnny a wry grin while sticking an order pad and pen in her apron. “Bite me, Anders.”

As the old guys stopped playing to shout their hellos to the waitress, she made her way around the front of the bar and offered her own greetings in the way of smartass comments. Aiden started to ask Johnny if he could see a bar menu when he heard a squeal next to him.

Her foot had slipped on the spilled beer and sent her on a one-way trip to the floor. Reflexes took over. He took one large step to the left and snaked an arm around her waist, bringing her up short before she hit the ground. Instinctively, her arms had latched onto his neck for dear life, bringing her body flush with his.

Somewhere in the background, whistles and catcalls filled the bar for saving the woman, but he didn’t acknowledge them. Or anything else for that matter. His chest felt branded where her breasts pressed against the steel bars in his nipples and sent shockwaves of pleasure to his balls. Desperate to derail his train of thought, he focused on her face, now only inches from his.

Natural beauty. That’s what popped into his head. Everything about her looked like it had been pulled from one of the four elements. He’d been wrong to think of her hair as merely “red.” Now that he saw it up close, it reminded him of the orange and gold streaks of a sunrise.

Blue eyes with a hue of green, like the water in a brochure for the perfect island vacation, gazed up at him with an innocent uncertainty.

The rest of her face was variant shades of peach: the lightest being her flawless skin, the darkest being her plump lips, and the feature that used every shade in between…


Looked like he’d been wrong after all. Because despite the wrong name, the reason Aiden left Boston for this Podunk town in the middle of nowhere just literally fell into his arms.

For more information about Gina L. Maxwell and her books, visit her website:

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