Spencer is almost ten years older than Melissa. While he’s attracted to her, he also realizes that she’s a forever kind of girl. Spencer doesn’t believe that happily ever after really exists. He tries to convince himself that just staying friends is for the best, but can’t resist her allure either.
After attending her younger cousin’s wedding, Melissa asks Spencer if he thinks there’s something wrong with her because she’s twenty-seven and not married. Of course, Spencer reassures her that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with her, then with the aid of a bottle of champagne proceeds to show her just how desirable she is. Only afterwards, Spencer asks if they’re still friends, shattering all of Melissa’s dreams of a relationship beyond friendship. The following week, back at work, they continue on as usual with a little added flirtation and Spencer invites her to go to Aruba with him during their joint vacation week. Melissa’s hopes skyrocket and they have a wonderful time on vacation, until Spencer begins to pull away from her physically and emotionally giving her the famous “I love you but . . . ” line. Spencer’s obviously afraid of any sort of commitment beyond friendship with Melissa, and Melissa wants love and forever. Sometimes friends make the best lovers, but will Melissa be able to convince Spencer of that?
HOT OFF THE PRESS is a true emotional roller coaster. In addition to Spencer and Melissa’s on again/off again relationship, you get an inside look at what it must feel like to be a reporter handling devastating news stories. Several of the stories had me crying for not only the victims and their families but for Melissa as well. They each have such a huge impact on her already bruised heart. Spencer’s fear of hurting Melissa wars with his need to love her, until he realizes that he already loves her and it’s the idea of a commitment that scares him. Erin Katz does an amazing job reinforcing the idea to let loved ones know you love them because you never know when it will be your last chance.