Two months after her divorce finalizes, Rachel Baker escapes to the BBarG Resort in western Wyoming. A winter vacation of outdoor activities and quality time with her sister near Grand Teton National Park is her holiday gift to herself. While on a cross-country ski trek in attempt to soothe her soul amid the grand Teton Mountains, Rachel spies what she believes is a wolf but turns out to be a lost husky dog. Together with handsome resort guide Nick, she attempts to reunite the magnificent dog with its owner. Nick Fenton questions the woman skier’s assessment of a lone wolf in the woods. Upon discovering London, a husky lost the previous year during a dog-sled race, Nick discovers more about Rachel, her passion for pet rescue and adoption, and the betrayal she experienced from her ex-husband. He relives his own romantic loss, yet the more time he spends with Rachel, the more attracted to her he becomes. Can Rachel and Nick set aside their hurts and find love in the shadow of Mount Moran amid the glorious Teton Range?
Gayle M. Irwin
Give us the one to two sentence tagline for your book.
Letting go of fear beneath Wyoming’s Teton Mountain Range
What is your favorite scene/moment in your book?
When Rachel and Nick stop fearing their feelings for one another.
Does your heroine prefer a real or artificial tree for Christmas?
What’s the one present your hero least wants to open Christmas morning?
Would your hero hang mistletoe?
What scene did you adore writing in this book?
When the lost husky accepts Rachel’s outstretched hand and her help
What is your heroine’s favorite Christmas tradition?
Embarking on an outdoor snow activity, like skiing
Does your hero love or hate snow?
For Christmas, will you be having turkey, goose, ham, prime rib, or something else?
Prime rib, just like in my book!
What’s the strangest Christmas tradition your family does to celebrate?
Hangs stockings for our pets
Excerpt from In the Shadow of Mount Moran
Nick slammed on the brakes, nearly stalling out the snowcoach. He looked at his passenger and then turned his head in the direction she pointed. At first, his eyes didn’t see what caught her attention, but a few seconds later, he saw a flicker of movement. The animal stepped out of the shadows of the lodgepole forest and seemed to stare at them.
Nick pulled out binoculars stashed in the oversized glove box to his right. He focused the lenses as the animal stepped back among the trees.
“Do you see it?” Rachel asked.
“No. It blended back with the trees. We’ll wait a minute and see if it comes out again.”
“Am I right? Do you think it’s a wolf?”
“Sure looked like one, but I just saw it briefly.”
“There it is!”
Nick followed Rachel’s pointing finger and then scrambled to set the binoculars again. He inhaled as the lens brought into view a skinny wolf-like animal. Nick’s eyes took in the entire creature. Long legs extended from a black and gray body with protruding ribs, a black muzzle, and piercing blue eyes.
“Can’t be,” he murmured.
He grabbed his phone and scanned through messages. August, June, April, and March – all the same photo. He looked through the binoculars again.
“I don’t believe it!” he murmured.
“What? What is it?” Rachel asked. “A wolf? A hybrid?”
“It’s a husky.”
“Husky? As in dog?”
Nick nodded. He turned and gave the binoculars to Rachel. As she placed her eyes over the viewfinders, he continued, “Lost nearly a year ago.”
Rachel whipped her head to stare at Nick. He showed her the photo on his phone.
“This guy was part of a dog sled race in the area last January. After the musher stopped to fix a blade on the sled, the dog somehow got away. He’s been missing ever since. You, Ms. Baker, have helped locate him.”
“Do you think he’d come to us?”
Nick shook his head. “I don’t know. He’s been in the wild almost a year, maybe even living with a wolf or two. But, while we’re here, let’s give it a try, shall we?”
“Yes. I’m part of a dog rescue organization in Montana …”
Nick’s gray eyes widened. “You are? That’s incredible. The musher is from Montana.”
Rachel’s eyes grew as well. “Who is it?”
“The man’s name is Jared Owens. The dog’s name is London.”
Her mouth rounded in an “O,” and then she said, “I remember that story. Do you really think …?”
Nick nodded. “I’m sure of it. Trouble is, I don’t have a leash.”
Rachel smiled and drew one from her pack. “I never travel without one. A person never knows.”
Nick grinned. “I don’t suppose you have any dog treats.”
She grinned back as she removed a small bag of dog biscuits from her jacket pocket and shook the sack.
Nick laughed. “Well, let’s see if we can entice one lost and likely hungry husky into rescue.”
Gayle M. Irwin is an award-winning author and freelance writer, being recognized by Wyoming Writers, Inc., and the Wyoming Press Association for several of her works. She’s contributed short stories to seven Chicken Soup for the Soul books as well as pet stories to Colorado’s Prairie Times. Gayle is the author of many inspirational pet books for children and adults. Her works include two clean, contemporary western romance books, part of a continuing series called Pet Rescue Romance. She’s also authored several pet books for children. Gayle subtly weaves life lessons within the pages of her stories, including courage, perseverance, and the importance of pet rescue and adoption. An animal advocate, she volunteers for various dog rescue and humane society organizations and donates a percentage of all book sales to such groups. Learn more about this Wyoming writer by visiting her website: www.gaylemirwinauthor.com.