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The Cosmic Order Bride

How does a man go about finding his perfect partner? He orders her, of course. Once he orders that perfect partner, how does he convince her that she is the one and only? Well . . . John Dougherty wakes up one morning on his Montana ranch and decides he is ready . . . to take that journey.

He is a fourth generation Montanan who had “escaped” twenty years earlier by attending Evergreen College in Olympia, WA. He is not going to be a rancher, but a writer. That dream ends when both his parents die in head-on collision during a freak blizzard on the Chief Joseph Highway.

John writes his way out of his deep despair and loss. In his quiet solitude, romance becomes a thirst. He quenched that thirst by writing the very thing he was searching for—romance. To his surprise, his books were top sellers and the ranch endured despite decades of draught. This ninth novel stirs a deeper longing in him for something . . . no, someone.

If he can just keep up his secret identity for a few more years, as long as Aunt Novalyne Dougherty, his father’s sister, agrees, and who is just eccentric and literary enough to fill a size seven high-heeled romance author’s shoes, he could keep the family ranch—all 7,500 acres. In this large, but humble home by the Madison River, John’s self searching from a deep spiritual thirst is just about to pay off—in a bride—in a cosmic order bride!

The last thing Téa Saint Jacques wants to read is a love story. As a successful book review editor for the New York Review of Books, Téa feels like she’s hit an all time low when her Editor-in-Chief, Phillip Rotner, assigns her to write an in-depth review of the successful writing career of the romance author, Novalyne Dougherty. The in-depth review has to coincide with the author’s forthcoming book, already positioned to hit high on the New York Times Best Sellers list.

Who has time for love or even wants to risk it today? Téa loves a challenge, even if she hates the genre, so she flies to San Francisco at the invitation by the publisher, Selene Pearls, who is launching the author’s book, The Cosmic Order Bride. Ms. Dougherty is attended, not only her publisher, but also her nephew, John Dougherty. At first glance of him, Téa hears a booming voice in her head announce. “You need to know this man!”

So begins John Dougherty’s story of how he orders and is delivered a cosmic order bride. It is a romantic-comedy filled with tumbleweed mishaps involving ETs suspect in spooking cattle in Big Sky Country. An unexpected author-in-waiting (already a New York Times Best Seller) wins a national writing contest with her debut novel about gay cowgirls growing up in Montana in the 1940’s. A journey of a thousand women (including the local cowgirls), becomes inevitable for a man-in-waiting to find the one love of his life. An African-American woman breaks all the stereotypical roles as a Western rancher, recent widow, and mystical guru dispensing pearls of wisdom over the fence at her llama ranch.

And . . . a New York book reviewer discovers the misplaced identity of a romance novelist and the love of her life under a canopy of stars in The Last Best Place.