Welcome again to another instalment of Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from my works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Mostly. Having guests around to play is fun too!
Today is a guest day, and I’m delighted to welcome Victoria Purman to Teaser Tuesday. You may know Victoria from her wonderful coastal-set romances and Boys of Summer series but—besides being from my home state of South Australia, which makes her special anyway—Victoria is also a lady of many talents and has swapped beach boys for … *shivers with excitement* … FIREFIGHTERS!
Here’s Victoria to tell you more.
I was so thrilled when Cathryn offered me a spot on her fabulous “Teaser Tuesday” blog and I knew right away which book I wanted to tease you all with. I have a novella – FLAME – coming out on July 5 and for this one, I’ve left behind the familiar coastal settings of all my Australian set books and headed across the Pacific to Montana. While I’ve been to the US, I’ve never been to Montana, so it was right to the internet to do research on some of the most amazing people around: smokejumpers. Here in Australia, we’re pretty familiar with the incredibly brave men and women who fight our Aussie bushfires. In the States, these smokejumpers JUMP OUT OF PLANES and then fight fires in inaccessable parts of the Rocky Mountains. I thought that was pretty intense and was so excited to be asked to write a book in the Firefights of Montana series for Tule Publishing.
Here’s a little tease for you all!
Extract from FLAME: Firefighers of Montana Series, Tule Publishing
Cady Adams surveyed her shop with a ridiculous sense of exhausted satisfaction. Cady’s Cakes look as sweet as the cookies and cakes and muffins she baked. As tantalizing as sugary icing and donuts, as tempting as the chocolate and mint slices she stacked neatly in her display cabinets. Its white painted bentwood chairs and wooden tables, photographs of the Montana sky framed in rows on each wall, its pale pink painted walls and its high ceilings were exactly as she’d imagined, but only better because it was real and it was hers. Her cake shop was light and big and the counter with glass display cabinets on top ran down one side, the cash register at the counter dogleg at the front. She’d painted the chairs, sewn the pink gingham curtains and hung them, and decorated the place all by herself and she still shimmered with delight every morning when she came down the stairs of her apartment above, turned left on the sidewalk and slipped her key into the front door lock and flicked on the lights. Even when she was tired. Even when snow was piled up on the footpath and she had to jump over it to push open the half frozen front door. None of that got in the way because Cady’s Cakes was hers.
Every day, she was her own boss. Every day, she was in control of her own destiny, her own career, her own choices, her own life. All of that had become super important to her after what had happened in her life. She knew that if her Mom and Gran were still alive today, they’d be so proud of her. Even in Glacier Creek, Montana, her customers expected nothing but the freshest cakes and the hottest coffee—every day except Sunday—when she had her one and only sleep in day of the week, and she made sure she lived up to the expectations of her customers.
That getting up before the birds thing she had going on? Early nights were a small price to pay for this freedom, this independence, this strength in herself that having her own business gave her.
So, when Dex McCoy drove slowly down Main Street on Saturday morning, Cady was already wide awake and alert to everything happening in her shop and in the street out front. She’d just served a crew of smokejumpers from Kalispell Forest Service Station, a bunch of guys who were regulars (black coffee and sugared donuts) when she saw him.
She had some kind of sixth sense when it came to that man. The connection was made the day after his mom’s funeral, their senior year at high school. He’d looked so wounded, so hurt and so angry. Until he’d seen her, until he’d let her wrap her arms around him because she couldn’t say anything meaningful enough to take away his pain.
He’d left Montana soon after, still wounded and hurt and angry and they hadn’t really spoken again until four years ago at The Drop Zone, the bar in Kalispell where all the smokejumpers hung out. She tried to push the memory of that night aside.
Cady tried to shake off the awareness of him but it was stuck in her head like a sliver of sliced almond in between her teeth. Her attention caught like a falcon seeing a mouse scamper in the grass a hundred feet below its extended wings. She looked outside, past the display of cupcakes on top of her glass counter, and the heads of her customers, and saw him in his truck, driving slowly past.
Without realising it, Cady let out the breath she’d been holding for three months, since Dex had driven off to Missoula to smoke jump with another crew. There was absolutely no reason she should have been scared for him. She was born and bred in Glacier Creek and her best customers were the smokejumpers who parachuted out of DC-3s to tackle wildfires in the Montana mountains before they became truly wild and even more dangerous. She knew those men and women were highly trained, extremely skilled, strong as oxes and fit.
So why had her heart been in her mouth the whole damn time he’d been away? Why had she dreamt about him, so vividly, over and over? Why had a tall, scarred smokejumper called Dex McCoy, a man who continued to cross The Drop Zone with a whiskey in his hand rather than say hello to her, got inside her head like he had? She huffed. It was inexplicable. How could she be so worried about a man who – not once, ever – had come into Cady’s Cakes and bought one single damn thing?
Thrilled by that teaser? Of course you are! But imagine how even more thrilled you’d be knowing that Flame will whiz straight into your ereader on release day if you pre-order it right now. Clickety-click on Amazon or iBooks. Go on. Everyone needs a sexy smoke jumper in their life!