When the past and present collide
Widower, Matthew Hollister, returns to the small Idaho town of Banner’s Point where he grew up, hoping to provide a wholesome environment for his son.
Matthew’s plans didn’t include Brian starting a feud with the son of elementary school Principal, Grace Banner.
It’s when the boys stop feuding, however, and become the most unlikely pair of matchmakers to ever hatch a plan for romance that Matthew faces his greatest challenge, resisting the widow of the man he considered his very own nemesis.
Matthew also rose to his feet. He found himself wanting to do something to ruffle Grace Banner’s entirely proper demeanor. Wisely however, he chose instead to withdraw his wallet from his back pocket and extract a business card.
“I’ll give you our new phone number.” He jotted it down on the back of the card and extended it to her.
Grace reached out, strangely conscious of the stark contrast of his bruised, tanned hand against her pale, white one. She glanced briefly at the card and noticed it sported the “Divine Deliverance” logo—a gleaming, vintage convertible.
Matthew opened the front door and then followed her outside. “I’m glad you tracked me down today. I care about my son’s behavior, and I wouldn’t have wanted something like this to drag on without me knowing about it. Thank you, Grace.”
Standing on the front steps, Grace stared into his serious face. Dark eyes filled with integrity and strength gazed down at her, holding her with their intensity. Dusk had fallen, and a ribbon of coolness snaked through the unseasonably warm night air. She shivered.
“How long did it take for you to realize who I was,” she asked softly.
Grace Banner stared at the powerful male legs sprawled beneath the car.
She swallowed hard, reminding herself that there was no point dwelling on the past unpleasantness between her family and this man. Not when the new unpleasantness between the Banners and the Hollisters needed their immediate attention.
Grace cleared her throat, preparing to calmly and rationally discuss the situation between their ten-year-old sons—their fiercely loyal, warring sons.
From beneath the car came an ominous clang of metal, then a low gurgling sound. A deep, masculine voice swore. Pithily. The long-legged body shot out from beneath the brown station wagon. She jumped back from its path. The top half of Matthew Hollister rolled into view—shirtless.
As he got to his feet, Grace’s lips formed a silent “oh”.
And, for a moment her eyes were too filled with chest to notice the dark, turbulent eyes glaring down at her from an oil-splattered face.
A powerful hand grabbed a fistful of blue paper towels from a nearby dispenser.
He gestured to the sign at the shop’s entrance. “Can’t you read?”
Author River Ames
River Ames spent the first eighteen years of her life in Southern California. Here is a partial list of some of the cities in which she lived: Pasadena, South Pasadena, Duarte, El Monte, Arcadia La Puente, Lomita, West Covina, Pacifica, Santa Monica, Palm Dale, and Hacienda Heights.
In some of those cities, she lived at six different addresses.
In the city of La Puente, River’s family lived in four different houses on the same street.
The non-glamorous reason for all the moves was habitual eviction necessitated for non-payment of rent.
It was an interesting way to grow up.
River attended twenty-six different elementary schools, two different junior high schools and four different high schools. In one elementary school, she was a student for only three days.
Perhaps, because she was so frequently identified as the “new girl,” the pattern of River being an observer instead of a participant in the interactions going on around her seemed a logical fit for her personality.
When she was thirteen, River read “Gone with the Wind.” She skipped three days of school in order to finish the book in one sitting. Disappointed in Rhett for “not giving a damn,” River wrote her own sequel—in long hand, on three-hole punch, notebook paper. The opening line? “Tomorrow dawned bright and fair.” In less than fifty pages, Scarlett had been transformed into Jane Eyre and Rhett had fallen in love with her all over again.
After Southern California, River has spent the next part of her life living in the semi-rural town of Idaho Falls, Idaho. She is a graduate of Idaho State University, majoring in Health Education Sciences and Addiction Counseling. She’s worked the past ten years at a Behavioral Health Center where she assisted children, teenagers, and adults committed in a 24/7 secured facility because of mental health challenges they are experiencing.
River’s books celebrate the good-natured humor that lays at the heart of most of our human predicaments. The conflicts are significant, yet it is her characters and their quirky (yet somehow universally relatable) thoughts, words, and choices that reflect a light-hearted peek into a world we wish was real.
The amazing thing is that these worlds are real to readers for the time they visit there.
Readers have said: “In a River Ames book, one minute I’m laughing out loud, and the next I have a lump in my throat.”
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