Tirgearr Publishing Logo

Released: June 2015
ISBN: 9781310988844
ASIN: B00XLYRD1Q
Kindle US, Kindle UK
Smashwords
Apple, Kobo, Nook
THE ECOLOGY OF LONESOMENESS
Author: David J. O'Brien
Length: Novel
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Price: $4.99

Kaleb Schwartz isn't interested in the Loch Ness Monster. He'd enough cryptobiological speculation about Bigfoot while studying the Pacific Northwest forests. He's in Scotland's Great Glen to investigate aquatic food webs and nutrients cycles; if he proves there's no food for any creature bigger than a pike, then so much the better.

Jessie McPherson has returned to Loch Ness after finishing university in London, hoping to avoid the obsession with its dark waters she had when younger and first discovered lonesomeness. She knows any relationship with a scientist studying the lake is a bad idea, but something about Kaleb makes her throw caution to the depths.

When Kaleb discovers Jessie's lonesomeness refers not just to the solitude of the loch, he's faced with an ecological problem of monstrous proportions. Can he find a way to satisfy both the man and the scientist inside himself, and do the right thing?

10% of the author's royalties will be donated to WWF, the World Wildlife Fund.

Excerpt
Kaleb got out of the Land Cruiser and put his hood up against the rain. It showed little sign of being the short shower he'd hoped it would be; he might have to take a long lunch.

Instead of heading to The Bothy or The Lock Inn when he crossed the canal bridge, he ran to the Canalside Fish and Chip Shop that faced The Clansman Centre: a tourist attraction where some guy dressed in a kilt played with Claymore swords and other Braveheart props.

It was greasy food, and he knew it was far from good to eat every day, but it was tasty, and heated the belly after a few hours out on the lakeshore with the wind whipping across the water. It was also quick and handy compared to sitting for an hour in The Boathouse restaurant next door. Besides, it was an anthropological investigation into the eating habits of the British Isles. Battered Mars Bars—now there was a marvel as confounding to Kaleb as the weather.

Immediately he pushed the glass door open and lifted back his hood, he did a double-take at the girl behind the counter. Instead of the big-bosomed, matronly woman who'd served him his fish and chips before, Kaleb found a new girl behind the counter.

Not only was she young, but she was pretty—very pretty—with glowing cheeks that looked like they dimpled when she smiled, and a heart-shaped face with a cute little pointed chin. Her long, wavy, black hair was tied in a ponytail that had not quite captured all the wisps of wayward ringlets.

A part of him wondered whether she shouldn't be wearing a hair net or something in a food preparation establishment, and another part told that first part—in a Scottish accent, inexplicably—to shut up talking shite and concentrate on the pertinent facts: one, she was a "bonnie lassie" indeed; and two, her hair was wonderful. And that second part of him was right. If Kaleb had seen her in an Inverness pub three weeks ago, he'd have downed a couple of pints in record time for even a seasoned American in Scotland to get up his Dutch courage, and screw the memory of Becky and all the bullshit baggage she'd left him. But this was not a pub, and he had to speak to her right now. He took a breath and smiled broadly, hoping he didn't look like an idiot.

She seemed to double-take him, too, when she looked up from putting lots of just-cooked fries into the little paper bags. Kaleb supposed that she had noticed he was new, too, though he would have assumed that a tourist destination would have strangers coming in and out all the time, and, when he thought about it, she was new, so every customer was new to her. But she was about to talk to him and he concentrated to ensure he understood her with the accent.

"Hello. What can I get you?" she asked.

Kaleb saw that her cheeks did indeed dimple when she smiled.

"Hi," he replied, thinking that her accent was, at last, a beautiful, lilting, musical thing like he'd hoped the Scottish accent would be but had, until then, seemed to him only an amazingly rapid series of guttural grunts that made it hard to understand everyone around him. "I'd like a bag of chips and fish, please."

"Fish and chips? Okay." She nodded, her smile deepening as she heard his own accent, no doubt, and his inability to say the stock British phrase "fish ‘n' chips" properly. "Just be a minute."

She went back to her work, jiggling a fryer full of the thick French fries he was quickly becoming addicted to, and picking up a wet battered fillet of fish: it was supposed to be cod, but he'd have said it was probably whiting.

Kaleb felt a sharp pang in his chest watching her, as if he'd been pierced with a porcupine quill. "You're new," he said.

She looked up with a quizzical expression. "No." She shook her head. "I'm old."

"I don't think so. I mean, I haven't seen you in here before."

"Oh, aye, no. I'm just back."

"Oh. From where?"

"London."

"Awesome. I've been there. I'm Kaleb. What's your name?"

"Jessie."

"Oh nice. That's cool. Appropriate name."

She frowned. "How's that, then?"

"Well," he said, feeling a little stupid for even thinking it, but also aware he couldn't just say it was nothing, to forget about it, now. A stupid conversation was better than no conversation—wasn't it? Perhaps not, but he was moving forward on this one already, there was no going back. "It's, like, Jess from Loch Ness..
What the reviewers are saying
A must read
Once in a while a book takes you completely by surprise. This was one of those books for me . . . I can only describe how I felt while reading this book as captivated. It somehow managed to balance a lot of science with love and make it so NOT boring. It has the mysteries of Loch Ness intertwined with the mysteries of Jessie’s heart is such a creative way that I was truly blow away by this book – and I wasn’t expecting that. ~ Crystal's Many Reviews, Amazon

• • •

He wants to satisfy the man inside himself as well as the scientist ...
I admit I was a little worried at first as this is not my usual genre to read. However once I picked it up I found it hard to put it down. The love story was beautiful but also believable. Not a lovely girl falling in love immediately, but the relationship having ups and downs. The science is written in such a way that you can understand and follow it. ~ Helen Pearce, Amazon

• • •

he meets and falls in love with Jessie
This is a captivating story that leads the reader through the scientific method without being boring. It leads one on a merry chase as to what the "glitch" could possibly be in Kaleb's data. The writing is beautiful and makes one be able to visualize the entrancing scenery that is Scotland. Kaleb and Jessie are well fleshed out characters, but they aren't the only characters worthy of note. Arab and Malcomb are both eccentric men who add flavor to the piece. They can be crusty and cantankerous, but they both know what they are about. There are several plot twists that keep the reader thinking. This is a marvelous book that everyone who has wondered about the Loch Ness should read. ~ Belinda Wilson, Amazon

• • •

FANTASTIC
When I first started reading The Ecology of Lonesomeness, I thought I wasn't going to like it or be able to get into it. I mean who wants to read anything that has anything to do with any kind of science. I was SO wrong! O'Brien tells this story in a way that pulls you in and keeps you interested. His characters are written so well that the reader feels they know them. The plot twists are wonderful. They keep you on your toes that's for sure! O'Brien never fails with his books. If you're looking for something more than romance this is definitely the one you'll want to read! ~ Minde1397, Amazon

• • •

What a wonderful story! Kaleb and Jessie are the type of people I would like to have as friends. The descriptions of the flora and fauna and landscape in Scotland made me wish I was there. The interactions between the people in the book were fun, interesting and believable. The dilemma that Kaleb faces is definitely a major one – one that could impact his future. I liked the fact that Jessie was portrayed as a strong woman with strong beliefs, able to keep a secret and knew what she wanted. Kaleb was much more open than Jessie in some ways but not in others. I loved the scene with the kilt! Mr. O’Brien has created another well written story that was a pleasure to read. Thank you to him for asking me to read and review this book! ~ Cathy Geha, Library Thing

 

HOMEAUTHORSBOOKSSUBMISSIONSNEWSLETTERTIRGEARR
                    

• Copyright © Tirgearr Publishing - All Rights Reserved •