Looking back over my MFRW Book Hooks, I noticed I hadn’t done one for the most recent book in my Asian Adventures series, Dragon Boat Blues. Thought I should remedy that!
After you enjoy my brief excerpt, I hope you’ll visit some of the other authors participating in today’s blog hop. You’ll find their links at the end of the post.
My lost superhero Josh had jet black hair, movie star cheekbones, clever hands, the devil’s mouth, and an instinct for driving me crazy. Josh believed in his own myths. He was forty miles an hour over the speed limit that day, more powerful than a locomotive, when we smashed into the tractor trailer. He blew out like a candle. I sputtered in a sort of half life, year after year, marked forever by that brief dance with insanity.
I booked the dragon boat cruise on Ha Long Bay to use up a few free days at the end of my business trip, figuring my disability wouldn’t be a problem on the luxurious junk. I wasn’t looking for companionship, just a bit of peace. But when British honeymooners Stan and Phil welcomed me into their circle of love, I discovered how much healing I still needed.
I didn’t have much difficulty getting into the dinghy—just handed my cane to the guide, sat on the pier, and eased myself down to sit with the rest of the tourists. Boarding the wooden junk anchored out in deeper water was another story. A ladder of planks and rope led from the open rowboat to the deck above. To climb, I would have to put all my weight on my bad leg. I knew that wouldn’t work.
I balanced precariously in the dinghy, surveying the situation. Maybe this was a bad idea after all.
“Up you come, love.” The speaker leaned over the rail of the junk, offering a ham-sized paw. “Give us your hand.” He had a ruddy complexion and a curly russet mop threaded with gray.
“Are you sure? I’m not exactly light.” I’d never been petite, and since the accident, I’d put on quite a few pounds.
“No problem,” said his younger, sandy-haired companion. “We’re used to tossing hay bales.” He shot me a friendly grin and extended his arm in parallel with his friend’s. “Just hold on tight. That’s the way.”
I gripped their wrists. They did the same to me. As they began to haul me upward, the dinghy captain clamped me around the waist and lifted me off my feet. My good leg flailed, trying for a foothold on the rungs of the ladder. It was all very awkward and embarrassing, but in a few moments I was standing safe on the deck.
The guide passed me my cane, then scrambled up the ladder like a monkey.
“You alright?” The burly older man shot a wry look at the tangled rope contraption the guide was pulling over the gunwale. “Not exactly accessible, that.”
“Thanks for your help.” My long shirt had bunched up below my breasts. I smoothed it down over my leggings, feeling flustered and sweaty. “Probably I should have thought about that before I booked the cruise.”
“C’mon! And miss this?” My other rescuer made a sweeping gesture, indicating the lavishly appointed ship. “All this carved teak and polished brass?” The crimson sails over our heads snapped in the wind as the junk began to move. “Ha Long Bay’s supposed to be one of the wonders of the world. We’ve been saving to take this trip for three years.”
Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BJJTHQF
Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07BJJTHQF
Smashwords – https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/804710
Barnes and Noble – https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dragon-boat-blues-lisabet-sarai/1128233847?ean=2940155178255
Kobo - https://www.kobo.com/en/ebook/dragon-boat-blues-asian-adventures-book-5
Don’t forget to check out the other Book Hooks posts today.
Oh, and congratulations to Daryl, who won my book giveaway last week!