Hi guys, we have Charley Descoteaux visiting today with her new release Holiday Weekend, we have a brilliant guest post, a great excerpt, a fantastic giveaway and Prime’s review. So peeps, check out the post and click the link to enter the giveaway! <3 ~Pixie~
Ryan Orchard moved from small-town Idaho to Portland almost two years ago and still feels like a hick. When Paulie Nesbitt dumped him, he wasn’t even surprised. Despite losing twenty-five pounds since then, Ryan’s confidence is nonexistent and his life has stalled. Not only is he convinced the career he wants is beyond his reach, he’s given up on relationships. A new job at a familiar restaurant—and his gorgeous coworker—could be just what Ryan needs to believe in himself again.
Glenn Hernandez might be the only nineteen-year-old in Portland who dreads his days off. Between his horrible housing situation and the ever-present temptation to crawl back into the bottle, Glenn prefers to keep busy. He volunteers at the Elliott Foundation House, a homeless shelter helping LGBTQ sex workers. As an alum of the shelter, Glenn finds it hard to leave his past behind. But when the new server at the trendy restaurant where he works catches Glenn’s eye and works his way into his heart, Glenn finally has a reason to start a new life.
Three things you won’t learn about Ryan Orchard by reading Holiday Weekend
Thanks for having me! I’m thrilled to be visiting MM Good Book Reviews to talk about my Christmas story, Holiday Weekend, Buchanan House: Book Five.
Ryan Orchard is the main character in Holiday Weekend—the guy who prompted the whole story by being so sweet in Tiny House. He was such a nice guy even while I was putting him through the wringer, I just couldn’t leave him alone and lonely. Even though he earned a Happily Ever After with all he’d endured in Tiny House, I still made him work for it.
Ryan is in his midtwenties, so his story had to be different than those in Tiny House and Safe House, where all the leads are late-thirties and older. Most of my stories are about older men so it was a challenge to write an HEA for Ryan that didn’t see him getting involved with another older man. After what happened between Ryan and Paulie in Tiny House, though, I thought he might not have chosen someone twice his age anyway.
Since Holiday Weekend is Ryan’s story a lot about him is included on the page but not everything. Here are three things that didn’t make the cut, and an exclusive excerpt!
- Ryan’s last name comes from a microbrewery in Portland, The Angry Orchard. My commute takes me past their sign ten times a week and when I needed a name that just seemed to fit. I got the name of Jasper Vaughn’s first restaurant in Tiny House from the same place: The Angry Puddle.
- Ryan has always been mature for his age. His parents had him later in life and his brothers were in middle school by the time he came along. His earliest memories are of his brothers playing with him as though he were a crash test dummy. Even though he had friends and an active social life, he spent most of his childhood surrounded by adults.
- This one you may notice, but it’s not spelled out on the page. Ryan’s brothers are kind of jerks—they grew up together and Ryan came later (as a surprise to his parents). Rick and Roger are quintessential country boys: big, strong, not dumb but they didn’t care all that much about school except for winning at sports. Ryan didn’t like sports growing up, he was happier in the kitchen with his mom, which earned him a lot of teasing from them.
This excerpt is from Glenn’s point of view. Especially in the beginning, Glenn sees Ryan much differently than he sees himself, so this will give you a good idea who Ryan Orchard really is.
I felt like a criminal—probably because technically I was—but I stood ramrod straight and knocked anyway. I shouldn’t be here, I knew that, but something was wrong. Especially after Halloween and the next three days that Ryan and I had worked together, shared our breaks, and eaten lunch and dinner together, having him call in sick without a heads-up didn’t track. It just didn’t seem like something Ryan would do. He’s way too considerate to leave me hanging like that.
At first I worried that Ryan had disappeared out of my life because I hadn’t taken the hint and hooked up with him on Halloween. Ryan had obviously tried not to grind against me, but the dance floor had been crowded and we had bumped together a few times.
And I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how big he was without getting caught staring.
But then we went home separately.
And then did it again three more times.
For once in my life, I wanted to know a guy before I had sex with him. For the first time ever, I cared more about the guy than about his dick or his ass. Or his money, but that was too terrifying even to think out loud, so I pushed the thought away. It scared the hell out of me—the potential for getting my heart wrecked, the chance that Ryan could get sick of waiting and find someone else to hook up with. Or a lot of someones.
Ryan could have anyone he wanted.
So when he didn’t show, I tried texting. And after a half-dozen flirty texts, I actually called him. One unanswered call was all it took for me to make the leap to petty larceny. I slipped into Paris’s office and copied Ryan’s address from the file she had on him. Paris looked relieved when I told her I didn’t feel well and had to take off. Mave was there, and counting Paris and her two assistants, the kitchen was more crowded than the dining room.
No answer at Ryan’s apartment, so I knocked again. Louder.
“Go away. You already said enough.”
Ryan sounded really sick. Something heavy hit the inside of the door.
“Ryan? Are you okay?” I waited but didn’t hear anything else. I pounded on the door again. Harder. “Ryan? It’s Glenn. Can I come in?”
It didn’t make sense—I’d heard Ryan’s voice, so he wasn’t in desperate need of medical attention or anything nearly so dire or melodramatic—but I kind of panicked. I couldn’t shake the feeling that I’d never see Ryan again if I didn’t get in there immediately. The door was unlocked. We’ll have to talk about that later. I shivered and eased the door open. Ryan stood frozen in the middle of the room. He looked like shit. Really, he looked like he’d slept outside or not at all, wearing sweatpants and his dirty shirt from PJ’s, with his hair sticking up and his face red and swollen and—
“Shit, Ryan.” I slipped inside and closed the door, locking it without moving my eyes from Ryan’s face. “Did you get in a fight?”
Ryan reached up and gingerly rubbed his cheek. His face reddened. “Did Paris send you?”
“No. I was worried about you.” I wanted to run across the room and grab Ryan, take care of him and make everything okay. But he looked scared. Hurt and scared, and it tore me up inside. It wasn’t a sure thing I was up to staying, since something was obviously very wrong, but at the same time, I knew I wasn’t going anywhere. “You didn’t text me back or answer when I called.”
Charley Descoteaux misspent a large chunk of her youth on the back of a Harley, meeting people and having adventures that sometimes pop up in her fiction. She grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area during a drought, and found her true home in the soggy Pacific Northwest. Charley has survived earthquakes, tornadoes and floods, but couldn’t make it through one day without stories.
Where to find the author:
Prize #1: signed paperback and swag (US only, winner’s choice: Tiny House or Safe House)
Prize #2: backlist book (any ebook except Holiday Weekend; worldwide)
Title: Holiday Weekend
Series: Buchanan House 05
Author: Charley Descoteaux
Length: Novella (125 pages)
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (16 Dec 2016)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 4 Hearts
Blurb: Ryan Orchard moved from small-town Idaho to Portland almost two years ago and still feels like a hick. When Paulie Nesbitt dumped him, he wasn’t even surprised. Despite losing twenty-five pounds since then, Ryan’s confidence is nonexistent, and his life has stalled. Not only is he convinced the career he wants is beyond his reach, he’s given up on relationships. A new job at a familiar restaurant—and his gorgeous coworker—could be just what Ryan needs to believe in himself again.
Glenn Hernandez might be the only nineteen-year-old in Portland who dreads his days off. Between his horrible housing situation and the ever-present temptation to crawl back into the bottle, Glenn prefers to keep busy. He volunteers at the Elliott Foundation House, a homeless shelter helping LGBTQ former sex workers. As an alum of the shelter himself, Glenn finds it hard to leave his past behind. But when the new server at the trendy restaurant where he works catches Glenn’s eye and works his way into his heart, Glenn finally has a reason to start a new life.
Review: Charley Descoteaux’s Buchanan House series is really a fantastic read. However, this particular book can be read as a standalone, those that have read the previous four books in the Buchanan House series may want to go back and work out where things fit in the story. Then again, you may not want to do that either. Whatever.
Charley writes in the author’s note how this particular book fits in the story. It’s not a part of the main timeline within the series, much like the other novella within the series “Pride Weekend”, “Holiday Weekend” is a part of the Buchanan House universe but not directly, also an important of the structure is that these also don’t open with a funeral, as the other three books in the series do. That was me quickly rehashing the author’s note .
The story itself revolves around the Elliot Foundation House – it’s a shelter for young gay men living on the street, most of them as sex workers to get by which has roots in the previous books of the series. Glenn is one of the success stories. He used to live on the streets and sell his body for money but the 19 year old is now a recovering alcoholic who is making life better for himself, even if he doesn’t really see it for himself quite yet. Then there is Ryan – we met him in the book “Tiny House” when his boyfriend Paulie found love with someone else. It wasn’t that Paulie is an asshole but Ryan is a very lonely and tragic figure. Both Ryan and Glenn have a lot of healing to do but the question is once they get together and sparks fly, can they be together and heal each other at the same time? When they head to Buchanan House for a weekend a bit of magic and love from familiar faces just makes everything perfect.
This is a heartwarming story which is full of hope and love. Glenn and Ryan are simply wonderful together, they have plenty of chemistry and a lot of heart. This is a wonderful addition to the series. I love that these guys have their chance at a happy ending within their own little world.