No Kind of Hero (Portland Devils)

No Kind of HeroNo Kind of Hero (Portland Devils, Book 2)

Coming from Amazon July 1, 2017

Some men are hard to quit. Some heroes take you by surprise.
Beth Schaefer isn’t just on the partnership track at her Portland law firm, she’s in the lead. Unfortunately, she’s about to fall at the finish line. When she makes a list of Breakdown Destinations, she can’t even manage to choose between them. Which means she has to come home to Wild Horse, Idaho, for her breakdown. She has exactly eighteen-point-five days of accumulated vacation time to devote to it.

Evan O’Donnell’s girlfriend took off when their baby girl was a month old, and that’s just fine by him. His daughter Gracie is all the female companionship he needs, thank you very much. Beth Schaefer’s not even in the running. Eight years ago, her parents convinced her to give him up, and he’s had enough of snobs and women who don’t stick. Evan’s a blue-collar guy from his too-broad shoulders to his scuffed work boots, and he’s nobody’s white knight and nobody’s hero. Not anymore.

But what if Beth isn’t the only one who needs saving?

Excerpt:

Beth turned at his approach. Well, everybody turned at his approach. Gracie was making that kind of an entrance. He dumped the diaper bag into the stroller with one hand, kicked the chair out, sat down, and plopped the nipple into Gracie’s mouth.

Blessed silence, except for the thup-thup-thup of a very greedy baby.

Beth said, “I guess babies have their own ideas.”

Evan laughed, to his own surprise. “Yeah. You could say that. They work your blood pressure up like that to make you do what they need.”

“I suppose it’s a sort of evolutionary thing,” she said. “Human babies being born so helpless and all. Not like ducks.” She indicated the creek, where a mother mallard was giving swimming lessons to eight fuzzy ducklings. “Babies are helpless because they have big heads, right? Because of brain size?”

“Uh . . .” He adjusted Gracie in his arm and tipped her bottle up so she wouldn’t swallow air. “Brain size?”

“Their heads are big in comparison to, say, puppies, because human brains are so big,” she said. “They can’t get born as . . . as far along, because a woman couldn’t give birth to them otherwise. It hurts a woman a lot more already than a puppy hurts a dog. Imagine if babies had to be born able to walk. Think how big their heads would be. You’d never get them out of there.”

This was what he’d always loved about Beth. The way her mind worked, the things she said. She seemed so quiet, but she was so damn smart. “I’m surprised you got born at all,” he said, and found that he was smiling despite every bit of better judgment. “With how big your head must have been. So tell me why Gracie has to scream for that bottle. Evolution-wise.”

“Well,” Beth said, “she’s helpless. She can’t get it if you don’t give it to her. She can’t even reach for it and bring it over to her mouth. She has to scream, and her scream has to trigger something in everybody who hears it—not just you, but you most of all. It’s better, though, if it triggers that response in everybody—that almost everybody within earshot is agitated and wants to do something, because a baby’s mother wouldn’t always be around, right? She needs to be able to signal somebody else besides her mom, or she won’t survive.”

That one wiped the smile off. He’d been stabbed in the heart, and she was trying to twist the knife? That wasn’t like Beth. But then, he didn’t know who Beth was anymore. Eight years was a long time.

He looked down at Gracie, at the dreamy look on her face, at her hand rubbing over her hair like the pleasure of getting that milk was so good she had to feel it all sorts of ways, and thought, I might not have a girlfriend anymore, but I made a good trade.

A few seconds passed before Beth said, her voice sounding much more constrained, “I just realized I should apologize.”

“You just realized that, huh,” he said before he could stop himself.

She wasn’t drinking her milkshake. He was looking at his—which was melting, of course—wishing he could drink it, and she was just shoving the straw up and down in hers.

“You should drink that,” he said, “before it melts.”

She shrugged, still not looking at him. “I haven’t been doing so hot at eating lately.”

He remembered that. When she got tense and stressed, she had trouble eating. It had driven him crazy, and then, when she’d been lying around in bed with him, eating a sandwich he’d made her, rubbing her bare legs against his as if she couldn’t bear not to touch him . . . he’d felt like her hero. Her safe place, where she could relax.

Stop that. What was he, the world’s slowest learner? Gracie was done with her milk, and he put her up on his shoulder, started to pat her back, and said, “Maybe you should give me that apology, then, and then you’d be able to drink your shake.”

She took a deep breath, then said, “I realize I shouldn’t have been talking to you like you were still a single guy. I came up to you on the beach, and I know that if I’d been your wife, that wouldn’t have been all right with me at all. For your old girlfriend to be trying to reconnect like that, to ask you to be friends. I’d have hated it. Sorry. I saw you, and I . . . I suppose I didn’t think. But I’ve thought since.”

“I don’t have a wife,” he managed to say. If I’d been your wife.

She made an impatient gesture with one hand. “Your girlfriend. Your fiancée. I don’t know. Whatever she is, I was out of line. I’m sorry.”

About rosalindiiams
  1. When will No Kind of Hero be available on Audible? I can’t wait!!!

    • Rosalind James says:

      Should be up for preorder around August 1! Releasing mid-August.
      I can’t wait to hear it either. :) It’s been recorded and is being edited/engineered now.

  2. Love it! I took me just over six hours to read it, I just couldn’t put it down. Having a hot single dad taking care of a baby girl is just too endearing. I kept hoping that Gracie will call Beth mama. I liked that Beth’s mom finally stopped thinking about societies “rules” and saw her daughter’s heart. I really liked that Evan is not a rich guy but just a man. A man on his own and raising “above” what live had dished out. I really liked the end since it had Jim Lawson from Take me Back, that was my favourite of that series. An amazing story that speaks of the heart and going for what you need instead of what is “safe”.

    On an side note… I love dragonflies so there have been dragonfly wedding invitations, decorations, lavender plants. There is also a stained glass jewelry box from my maid of honor with purple dragonflies, dragonfly earrings and pendants that my husband gave me on our first Christmas and more over the years. I even got the idea for a dragonfly belly button from having Dakota have a belly button on the previous book. Not to mention that I moved from New York city to a farm in Minnesota after I married, where I actually got to see dragonflies for real.

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