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Hello everyone! Welcome to another Jingle Books Spotlight! And I’m trying a new format for book spotlights. Let me know what you think in the comments. So, without further ado let’s get on with the Book Spotlight!
A Holiday with Finesse
Renee is packed and ready for her Christmas couples’ retreat. There’s only one problem – her boyfriend chose not to buy her a ticket.
Embarrassed, low on money, and stranded in another state, Renee calls the only person able to assist her – Finesse, a friend and professional comedian. He offers to drive her back home after his show. In addition to the ride, he takes her to dinner and decides to teach her things men do for women they want.
Renee comes to rely on his candor and consideration…and uses this information to date other men. Will she give him the chance he desires, or will she use his tips to bypass him to find love in someone else?
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Snippet from book:
Renee slapped her hand on the counter, prompting a security guard to hurry to her
customer service agent’s side. She attempted to put her phone inches from the agent’s
eyes to force her to read the itinerary, but the guard intercepted. The look on his face
and grip on her phone promised a trip to the security office and a possible ban from the
airport if Renee didn’t maintain her composure.
“Lady, I spent nine hours traveling yesterday, on Christmas, and am booked for
two more flights to get to Puerto Vallarta. My ticket was prepaid, confirmed two months
ago, and is supposed to be in my hand now.” Renee pointed to her empty palm. “My
plane takes off in forty minutes. Don’t make me miss it.”
“Ma’am, I’m sorry. There’s no record of you having purchased a ticket.”
“Well, my bank statement says different.” Renee tried to peer at the computer
screen but was reminded by the guard to stand back. “You must not know how to find it.
How long have you worked here?”
The agent looked flustered. “I do even though I’m new and –”
“Then get me somebody who isn’t ‘new’ and can get me my ‘old’ boarding pass. I
don’t have time for you to practice finding reservations with me.” Renee pushed and
pulled the handle of her suitcase up and down while waiting for the manager to arrive.
Would be my luck to get the ditzy new girl who doesn’t know how to find a ticket using a
name. So much for an express line.
A short woman with her hair in a fifties-style wrap appeared, twirling keys. “What’s
the problem, Carol?”
Carol gestured to Renee. “This –”
“This? I’m a ‘this’ now?” Renee interrupted and held her hands against her chest.
“This what, Carol? Huh? Say it. This what?”
Carol appeared stunned and afraid to let the words come out of her mouth. A
couple of seconds later, she blinked rapidly, faced her manager, and continued. “This
woman, er, Ms. Bridges says she’s supposed to be on the 12:13 flight to LAX, but I’ve
told her that she can’t get a boarding pass because she doesn’t have a ticket. I don’t
see her in the system.”
The manager held out her hand but did not look up from the screen. “May I see
your ID and the card used for the purchase?”
Renee placed the driver’s license in her hand, explained her boyfriend had made
the transaction, and waited.
“Carol’s right. You’re not listed for a ticket. The only thing I see is that you arrived
here last night at 10:37 p.m. Why did you believe you had another flight?”
Renee’s patience was short. She shoved the phone showing the flight information
into the manager’s view. “See? It’s right there – my name, time, reservation number. All
of it.” She pointed to the screen and huffed. “What does it take to get a boarding pass
around here? How are you not finding information in your own system when you’re the
ones who email out the confirmations?” She threw up her arms. “Why Trent thought it
would be a good idea to use this airline instead of the one where my cousin works is
beyond me. You people are incompetent.”
The manager shook her head. “There is…” she looked as if she were choosing her
words carefully, “no confirmation for the name Renee Bridges.” She paused. “If you’d
like, you may purchase a ticket for this evening. I have one for $846. You’ll arrive at LAX
“Eight hundred dollars? You’ve lost your mind! I’m not buying a second ticket.
You’re trying to scam me.” She turned her body toward other patrons behind her in line.
“Scam! This airline’s trying to take advantage of me during the holidays.”
“Ma’am, I need to ask you to step out of line.”
Renee refused. “Ooooh, no. I’m not about to let you guys waste my money. I paid
for a plane ticket and have an emailed receipt and itinerary to prove it. You’d better find
a way to make sure I get on that plane. I have a connecting flight to Puerto Vallarta.”
The manager motioned away from the line. “Ma’am, please. I don’t want to make a
scene. You don’t have a ticket, and I’m trying to make this easy on you. Please let’s talk
Renee raised her finger to the air and turned her neck. “Lady, if I don’t see my
boarding pass soon, making it ‘easy on me’ will be your last concern.” She banged her
fist on the counter. “Gimme my ticket!”
The security guard guided the reluctant Renee away from the counter to the office,
where she was informed that she would be arrested for any threatening outburst. Renee
called Trent and left a voicemail.
Renee: Hey, I know we’re supposed to be on the flight. I didn’t see you in line and am now in the
security office. Are you already at the gate? Can you ask them to wait a few minutes so I can clear this
The manager stood to the side of the desk. “Ma’am, I was trying to be discrete.”
She folded her hands. “Please pull up the itinerary you have so I can show you
Renee went to the screen showing the flights.
“This wasn’t sent from us.”
“No, I sent my boyfriend the money to buy our tickets, and he emailed me the
schedule. See?” She pointed to the price total. “That’s what he paid for both of our
The manager gave the guard a knowing look and continued speaking. “There may
have been ‘a’ ticket purchased…but not for you. I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but
your name was typed into the place of the original passenger. Your money may have
been used to buy the ticket, but the reservation was never placed under your name. If
the email doesn’t come directly from us, then when someone forwards the message,
parts of the email can be added, deleted, or altered. In this case, it sounds like the
name was changed.”
Renee didn’t blink. “Wait a minute.” She held up a hand. “Are you trying to tell me
that this email isn’t real?”
“No, the email is real. Everything about that reservation is real except the
passenger name. I think your name was replaced to make you believe you had a ticket.”
Renee slapped her hands to her thighs. “Do you mean I purchased a ticket that
“It seems that way.” The manager walked toward the door. “I need to check on
Renee couldn’t stand. “Can you tell me if Trent is on the flight and if there’s
someone in my seat?”
The guard interjected. “We can’t share that information with you, ma’am. It’s a
violation of privacy to tell you the passenger roster.”
The manager stood, partially outside the room. “He’s correct, Ms. Bridges.” She
widened her eyes and nodded while speaking slowly as she exited. “I would be wrong to
confirm that Trent and another woman are on the plane.”
Renee let the words and motion echo in her head and made a bolt for the door.
“Oh, I know that punk wasn’t bold enough to use my money to treat somebody else!”
Two security officers restrained her, and one said, “Ma’am, you’ll have to settle
that with him off the premises. Since you have no flight and are looking to harm another
patron, you have to leave the airport.”
Renee asked flatly, “And go where?”
“Anywhere but here, ma’am.”
About the Author:
Thank you all for reading and remember:
Live. Love. Laugh.