Kaitlyn Driver needs to convince her dad that the wrench-wielding daughter he has is just as good as the son he lost. What better way to do it than by winning the Atlantic Coast Big Rig Pulling Series? But when her step-mom gets sick, Kaitlyn must set aside her big plans so he can run the company and take care of her step-brothers. Then, rumors start to fly, and the garage and her reputation are in danger of being torn apart.
After an accident, IT specialist Nate Gordon is forced to share a garage with the tough, yet tender, Kaitlyn Driver. Suddenly Nate's knee-deep in boys and baby bottles, trucks and turbos, but he's fascinated with the blue-eyed beauty who can handle a big rig the way most girls run their curling irons.
Kaitlyn is intrigued by Nate, but she isn't sure if Nate will stick around or believe the rumors. When her dad’s drivers start quitting, Nate could be the only one who can save their company. Can she learn to depend on someone besides herself?
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Duct tape. She’d put duct tape on the child’s knee.
Nathan Gordon watched from the other side of the quiet street as the chestnut-haired woman knelt in front of a sweet little girl, patting the makeshift duct tape bandage into place. The girl’s knee no longer bled, but there were still several small streaks of blood drying on her lower leg. She no longer cried either. Although the salt tracks on her face testified to the fact that she had been.
But Nathan wasn’t exactly watching the little girl. It was the grease-covered woman who had caught his eye. The soft, late summer breeze skimmed the back of his neck as he stood, still and silent, on the cracked sidewalk in front of the hardware store. The woman’s beauty could not be denied—classic profile with perfect angles of nose and chin, hair curling down her slim back and long legs encased in soft blue jeans, wearing a worn tee with a heavy machine company’s logo. That wasn’t what made his heart thump and his eyes linger.
It was the unexpected contradictions.
The woman’s hands were tender and gentle, but what kind of woman carried around duct tape? Or would think to use it to patch a knee? There were streaks of black grease along one high cheekbone and more grease dotted her arms and clothing. Was she a mechanic? Her work boots were worn and scuffed; they weren’t a fashion statement.
He couldn’t hear what she said to the little girl, but he could see the woman’s grin and the slight toss of her head as she indicated the other children, mostly boys, who stood just inside the playground gate.
The little blond head came up and the girl’s pointed chin jutted out. She nodded at the woman once, like a football player about to leave the huddle, and then with her thin shoulders squared she marched back to the gate, alone, while the woman watched with arms akimbo.
Was the woman her mother? No ring glistened on her hand.
The child met the boys, ran past them, her newly bandaged knee pumping, and raced to the shiny red and blue monkey bars. The woman stood for a minute more then turned and stepped to a blue, long nosed semi-truck parked close to the curb. Opening the door, she hopped up the steps of the big rig and disappeared inside.
Nate turned back to the hardware store to pick up the rest of his order. When his sister, Eve, asked him to come to the small Pennsylvania town of Transmission and run their trucking company while she and her family went on vacation, she had mentioned there was a local lady, Linda, who was perfect for him. Nate found himself hoping that Linda carried duct tape in her purse and drove a big rig.
Question 1: At the end of Chapter 1, Kaitlyn drops her phone. Why?
Answer 1: Because of the rumors going around, she knew Eve's brother would have reason to dislike her and possibly want revenge.
Question 2: What is Nate's biggest fear?
Answer 2: That he will turn out to be abusive like his father.
Question 3: How did Eve get her scars?
Answer 3: Her father (Nate's father) threw her out of a window in a drunken rage.
Question 4: What is Kaitlyn's biggest fear?
Answer 4: That she might need to depend on someone else.
Question 5: What does Nate try to do in order to avoid facing his fear?
Answer 5: He's determined to fine a mild-mannered woman who is easy to get along with.
Question 6: How is Nate able to face his fear?
Answer 6: Kaitlyn points out that he might be like his dad in other ways, but he doesn't have his dad's temper. He realizes that his fear was unfounded, based on what other people had always said.
Question 7: Kaitlyn feels like her dad doesn't love her. What did she do to try to compensate for the lack of love?
Answer 7: She tried to find love in the physical relationship of various men.
Question 8: At the beginning of the book, Kaitlyn felt that she could prove she was as good as any boy by winning the truck pulling championship, and thus earn her father's love. How had she changed by the end of the book?
Answer 8: She realized her dad loved her, even though at times it didn't feel like it to her. By the end of the book, she wanted to win because she was competitive, but she no longer felt she had to prove herself.
Question 9: Kaitlyn felt like strength was doing everything herself. Is that what real strength is?
Answer 9 Answers will vary. I believe sometimes it is harder, and therefore takes a stronger person, to allow others to help. I also think perhaps Kaitlyn confused strength with pride.
Question 10: At the end, Nate refused to fight, even though Kaitlyn would probably have been okay with it. Why, then, did he refuse?
Answer 10: He was very aware of his example to Bobby, who had already struggled with fighting at school.