Former firefighter Echo Rose may have recovered from the injuries that nearly ended her life but the emotional scars still linger. She now devotes herself to protecting wildlife and sheltering her heart until local contractor Rey Bowen reminds Echo that life can offer so much more.
Rey Bowen is not the only one at Lake Serene with secrets and a desire to reboot his seriously derailed life. Meeting Echo reminds him that life can sparkle with joy and laughter and passion, but can he show the cautious Echo how to love again even as he struggles to trust his own heart?
“I’m under pressures you’ll never understand,” he said so softly she had to strain to hear. “Pressure that goes much deeper than being able to bring in roofing trusses.”
Both fascinated by what he hadn't said and determined not to go beneath the surface with the big, distant man, she started back toward her vehicle.
“We all do what we have to,” she said over her shoulder. “Priorities that drive us. I’ll leave a printout with you so you know exactly what you can and can’t do until the restrictions are lifted.”
“Who made up those rules?”
She was tempted to counter that the rules hadn’t been fashioned out of thin air as he seemed to be indicating but that wouldn’t get them anywhere. For as long as Rey and she were at Lake Serene, they’d have to work together. She had no control over how he handled his side of the relationship, but she intended to be as professional as possible.
Easier said than done, because he’d joined her and was matching his stride to hers, his arm occasionally brushing hers. Touching her in ways she'd nearly forgotten were possible. Reminding her she was a woman.
She started to put distance between them but was distracted by what might be the chipmunk she’d seen earlier. Its life could depend on what she said today.
“Your employee can’t smoke outside,” she told Rey as they neared the cabin with the cigarette-smoking workman now standing in the doorway.
“That’s one of the regulations.”
He stopped, gave her no choice but to face him. “That goes without saying. I’m not an idiot.”
Guest Post – RESEARCH
(How much time do you spend on research, how do you conduct research, and what resources do you use?)
There’s no one answer to the question of how much time I spend researching since every book I’ve written has been different. His Montana Rescue is part of the Montana Lakeside contemporary romance series so I was able to use the results of my research for each of the books. Originally, I’d placed the series in the southern Oregon mountains because my family has a summer cabin within an hour’s drive of Crater Lake, but that changed when I signed contracts with Tule Publishing. They’re doing VERY well with a large, far-ranging romance series set in Montana and when the publisher suggested I take advantage of that, I of course agreed. Much as I wanted to go to Montana, it wasn’t possible so I spent hours Googling that amazing stated, particularly the incredible mountains there. (And yes, I have a thing, a big thing for mountains). In addition, my dear friend Catherine Anderson moved to Montana this summer. She’s been generous in sending me pictures and describing what things feel, smell, and look like. I couldn’t get that from the Internet.
Setting has always been important to me. I’m a country gal born and raised far from cities. Much of the time, I let my characters explore and embrace the open spaces as I’ve always done. The wilderness isn’t just a place where the action happens and people fall in love. It becomes a character in its own right, impacting my characters in ways they’ll never forget. I’m determined to make that emotional impact as authentic as I can.
Setting is only part of what a writer needs to get right. Even more important is creating characters who leap off the pages. I’ve never knowingly patterned a character after someone I know, but I do give my characters backgrounds I can relate to and understand. I mentally put myself in their shoes and look at the world through their eyes. (That’s why I’ve written so much about characters whose relationships with their fathers are flawed or non-existent).
I’m fortunate in that two of my writer friends are also psychologists. They’ve been invaluable when it comes to explaining why people act the way they do. For example, right now I’m working on a book with a minor character who deliberately sets fires. What impulses rule a fire starter? Does he concern himself with how his actions impact other people, including his family and those who have lost their homes? Getting that deep into someone who is so screwed up isn’t something I trust to my imagination so I send a questioning email to Lynda or Cindy and they reply with the details I need.
In addition to understanding the fire starter, I need to have a good idea what his victims go through. Many years ago our next door neighbor’s house burned down, and he lived with us for several weeks. To this day I vividly remember his numb, shocked expression. I also Googled what shock does to a person, but Bill’s eyes made the greatest impact.
Vella Munn freely admits to being a dedicated and sometimes demented fiction writer. She has always been drawn to nature and those who feel at home in it. A career writer, she has had way over 60 books published, most of them romances both past and present. As far as personal statistics go, she has one husband, two sons, four grandchildren, and is owned by two rescue dogs. Home is southern Oregon within a two hour drive of Crater Lake. She frequently visits Montana in her mind and heart.
Vella will be awarding a several photographs of Montana's wilderness sent via email (international and U.S. giveaway) to a randomly drawn winner.
Follow the tour for more chances to win: https://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2016/10/vbt-his-montana-rescue-by-vella-munn.html