HOLLIE PORTER BUILDS A RAFT: Teaser!

 

Hello, summering friends! I hope where you are, you’re not baking like a sheet of Toll House cookies on an Arizona dashboard. Seriously, British Columbia has been in the grips of a wicked heat wave but the weather forecast calls for a smidge of rain on Sunday — I might dance in the streets if this happens. Bring on the petrichor!

I am busy like a beaver writing you a new book, now that the other YA project is back in New York with her beloved editor, and I’m excited to share a wee snippet from HOLLIE PORTER BUILDS A RAFT, the *sequel* to MUST LOVE OTTERS. I’d never planned a sequel until folks started asking, and you know, them’s some smart folks. So nice to know that readers have enjoyed Hollie and Ryan as much as I have! How about a summary first?

Hollie Porter Builds a Raft

raft (noun): when two or more otters rest together,

often holding hands, so they don’t drift apart

Hollie Porter has put her old gig as a 911 operator and sad single girl in an attic-bound box, right where it belongs. She’s rebounded nicely from her run-in with Chloe the Cougar in the wilds of British Columbia, and this new life alongside concierge-in-shining-armor Ryan Fielding? Way more fun. After relocating to Ryan’s posh resort at Revelation Cove, Hollie embarks on an all-new adventure as the Cove’s wildlife experience educator, teaching guests and their kids about otters and orca and cougars, oh my.

When darling Ryan gets down on one NHL-damaged knee and pops the question of a lifetime, Hollie realizes this is where the real adventure begins. It’s all cake tasting, flower choosing, and dress fittings until a long-lost family member shows up at the Cove and threatens to hijack her shiny new life, forcing Hollie to redefine what family means to her. What is she willing to sacrifice to have one of her very own?

As Ryan’s words echo in her head—“Our raft, our rules”—Hollie has to face facts: a raft isn’t always tied together with blood and genetics. Sometimes it’s secured by love and loyalty… and occasional help from the clever creatures that call Revelation Cove home.

~ ~ ~

Cover reveal is July 14. I hope you love it as much as I do! Sarah Hansen with Okay Creations does our covers, and she just “gets” it. So fun.

We’re looking at an October 1 release date with ARCs going out in September, alongside a blog tour, etc. Stay tuned for details. Follow on Facebook or sign up for our very occasional newsletter (no bombarding you, I promise — I’m not organized enough to bombard anyone).

NOW, A TEASER!

I find teasers REMARKABLY difficult. I don’t want to give away punch lines or otherwise ruin in-text jokes. And I don’t want to give away spoilers. So this is kinda fun … and it tells you where our lovebirds are at this stage in the game.

Set up: A few days earlier, Hollie and Ryan popped down to Portland to see Nurse Bob (Hollie’s dad) and go to a Winterhawks playoff game. Hollie had an unfortunate run-in with expired foodstuffs. This snippet doesn’t give away much, except to say that these kids are moving right along Love Highway.

***

The closest thing I’ve gotten to 911 in the last eleven months: watching Ryan get hoisted into the air by the Coast Guard helicopter taking him to the mainland post-cougar attack.

That was a dark day.

But today is brighter, I am no longer throwing up from bad processed meat, and we have the whole day to ourselves to hang out in Portland.

I roll over in bed, hiding my morning breath behind the sheet draped across my lips. “Ryan, get me out of this hotel room.”

“As your concierge, I think that can be arranged,” he says, rolling over to face me, his dark brown curls appropriately messed after slumber. “First, however, I need to do an inspection.”

“Of?”

“Everything. I need to make sure you’re fully healed and healthy and ready to face the world.”

“And that would involve …” Ohhhhh, that. His scruffy face tucks under my nightshirt, an old Red Wings T-shirt stolen from his vast collection, and he blows a raspberry between my boobs. Which, of course, leads to laughter and the blowing of raspberries on other important body parts.

It does not matter how many times I see his nekked bod—I still cannot believe I get to touch it whenever I want.

Once fully inspected and deemed fit for consumption, I am cleansed. Head to toe. Ryan is nothing if not thorough in his duties as concierge and boyfriend. Sharing a shower with me is always a win-win for Mr. Fielding, except he’s enough taller that he has to drop to both knees so I can wash his curls. Oh, what a tough job this is.

I’m careful when I bathe the scarred patchwork decorating his left arm. Though it’s been almost a year, Ryan likely has another surgery or two to deal with nerve and tendon damage from Chloe the Cougar’s handiwork. And while he’s self-conscious about the fact that the left arm is now weaker and smaller than the right one, I try to make him forget by kissing all the bits the doctors sewed back together.

***

Take care, my friends. Talk to you soon.

love-and-cake

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