Robert Oaks : 26 Days - A Love Story

26 Days - A Love Story

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For Readers Of

Nora Roberts, Helen Cooper, H. M. Ward, J. S. Cooper, J. S. Scott

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Cynthia Thornton manages a company with 28,000 employees yet she can’t manage her own life. She is firmly entrenched in her New York lifestyle and has everything anyone could want except one thing…a life. Even though she’s 40 and a striking beauty, she’s never had a relationship of any kind with a male, not even a friendship. Her intense, unwavering hatred of all men dominates her life and draws her into behavior that could cost her everything she’d worked so hard to accomplish. When the demons that possessed her drover her to the edge of suicide, her psychiatrist convinced her that the only way she would rid herself of the debilitating hatred was to force herself to interact with a male. It need be nothing more than a casual friendship. It was the only way she would ever learn that all men are not evil. With the help of a “match-making” friend, she is introduced to Nicholas Legitt.


Nicholas Legitt is a Pulitzer Prize winning author who lives in a small town in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. He’s bright and witty and his rugged good looks make it easy for him to find female companionship, or for female companionship to find him. He is not an unscrupulous seducer of women however; in fact he’s just the opposite. Cindy decides he will be the friend who will be her stepping-stone to the future. Their friendship inches along until it becomes a relationship that’s rife with conflicts, yet they have great affection for each other, but when their conflicts drive them to a third separation, they know they will never see each other again.


Jill McNulty and Nick grew up together and had a torrid affair that began in high school and continued for four years beyond that. She ended their relationship when Nick refused to marry her. She knew Nick would never marry her, or anyone else for that matter, and she knew why. Her life moved on after then ended their intense relationship as she chased her dream to have a family. She married; had two daughters; then divorced. She was free to renew the love of her high school sweetheart that had been dormant for so many years. With his relationship with Cindy behind him, Nick was eager to reunite with the high school cheerleader who stole his heart. When they slept together again, it was as if the long separation hadn’t existed.


Peter Markowitz was Nick’s best friend. They grew up together and had been like brothers since they were eight. Markowitz is actively seeking the Republican nomination to be their candidate in the coming presidential election.

So how does the story end? Do they each find the happiness that eluded them all their lives? Will they, each in their own way, live happily ever after, and if so, with whom? The answers are in the story. They might surprise you.

26 Days is intended for mature readers. It contains adult language and adult themes.

Editorial Reviews

Reviewed By Kathi Nidd for Readers’ FavoriteBestselling author Nick Legitt finds himself seated next to glamorous and intriguing Cynthia at a fundraiser for his long-time friend, Peter. Amid the glitz and opulence of the New York City Plaza hotel, the two are drawn to one another, making it even more surprising for Nick when Cynthia immediately dismisses him at the end of the evening. 26 Days: A Love Story by Michael Stafford travels from the exciting energy of Cynthia’s New York home and high pressure career as a CEO to the beauty and quiet of Nick’s Colorado town and calm life with his dog, Gloria. As the two embark on a tumultuous long distance friendship, the reader learns more about Cindy’s tragic past and unusual reaction to it. With each move towards closeness, Nick is met with rampant outbursts that emerge from Cindy’s personality at the slightest provocation. But soon, Cindy comes to trust Nick’s honest character and confides in him the story of her poignant and agonising past. Working together, Nick embraces Cindy, providing her with her first trusted male friendship as they enjoy exploring cities and each other. Soon, their mutual admiration turns to something more as they both experience feelings they have never encountered before. But will their long distance relationship, distinctive personalities, and turbulent pasts create a barrier to lifetime happiness?Michael Stafford’s 26 Days: A Love Story is an up and down ride of the relationship between Cindy and Nick. Nick’s character is slow moving and patient as he helps Cindy work through her demons, making him a most endearing character. Cindy’s battles and subsequent life decisions are very intriguing, providing an unexpected edge from traditional female leads. Stafford does a fabulous job depicting both the physical setting and emotional ties to the locations defined in the book. From New York city to the Colorado Mountains to the cowboy dancing night clubs of Dallas, the reader comes along with Nick and Cindy for their ride as they both work to leave their pasts behind and take a leap into happiness. Stafford’s writing has a rarely found tender edge that works magically through the character of Nick as he helps Cindy move forward through both their conversations and their passionate encounters. I look forward to further stories from Michael Stafford and, given that this is entitled Volume I, I eagerly await Volume II.

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More From this Author