It’s the four-year anniversary of signing my first book contract with Tule Publishing. What a fun ride it has been since then! I’m writing book #8 for them with two more after this one and hopefully another 4-book series for another family in River’s Edge. Whew! I love this little town and all the people in it. The characters feel like family to me and I truly hope they do to my readers as well.
Speaking of River’s Edge—we were, right? It’s been a while since I’ve given y’all an actual snippet so today here you go. A little tiny snippet involving the town from The Valentine Wager. Setup, briefly, is that cop Ryker Lange has stopped in the diner for supper, where he runs into other townsfolk. When he sees the woman who has bowled him over headed to the diner, too, he sorta loses his stuff…
Mac stepped down to the cash register to settle a check with Noah Barker, who’d come in with Dot Higgins for the third time in less than two weeks, by Rye’s count.
He watched as Dot waited shyly by the door while Noah paid the bill. Something was definitely brewing there. Noah had been a widower for several years and Dot was what was once referred to as a spinster, although town lore had it that she’d suffered a broken heart many years earlier. Noah’s hardware store was right down from Dot and her sister Mary’s Seams Pieceful quilt store, and he had seen Noah making the trek between the two places more than once lately. Rye caught Dot’s eye and winked. “You and Noah courting now, Dot? You aiming to break my heart?”
“Just you never mind, Ryker Lange.” Dot shook one finger at him, but kept her position by the door. “Besides, we both know you could never keep up with me. I need a man with experience.”
Noah’s big laugh filled the diner, turning the heads of the other patrons. “She’s gotcha there, Rye.”
Rye chuckled. “She sure does.” He waved as Noah opened the door. “Enjoy your evening, you two.”
While he was turned around, he noticed a couple of women crossing the street in the crisp evening dusk.
Hold on. Is that Kathleen Boynton, heading straight for the diner with Carly?
His heart skipped a beat or two as the bell above the door jangled and the two women entered, chattering like old friends.
He spun back around on the stool, trying to be unobtrusive and not appear like he was gawking. Instead, he knocked over his glass of iced tea, the ketchup bottle, and the saltshaker with his elbow. The tea spilled all over the counter and the ketchup and salt clattered to the floor behind the counter as heat rushed to his cheeks. “Oh, damn, I mean, darn, I mean…” Rye jumped up as iced tea ran off the counter onto his jeans. “No, no…” He grabbed a fistful of napkins from the dispenser on the counter and ended up knocking it off, too. “Crap…”
When he glanced up, Carly and Kitt were both obviously holding back laughter and a quick side-eye to Mac showed that he wasn’t making any secret of a grin as he gathered up the fallen items beneath the counter. Mac tossed a dry towel and Rye caught it midair, applied it first to the front of his pants, and then started mopping up the stool and the red Formica counter.
So there you go…welcome home to River’s Edge! Ryker and Kitt’s story is up for preorder at your favorite e-book retailers and releases on February 1, 2022. Hope you enjoy!!
Stay well, stay safe, wear your mask, and most of all, mes amies, stay grateful,