Book Extract: A Scottish Island Surprise by Holly Wyld

I’m pleased to be welcoming Holly Wyld to Novel Kicks and the blog tour to her book, A Scottish Island Surprise – a Primrose Island Novella. 

“Far as I’m aware–” Joe said, dropping his head briefly, the better to compose his features, “–far as I’m aware, Miss, we’ve no rabies in the Hebrides at the moment.”

Rose Mackie has inherited a house on a far-flung Scottish island from her curmudgeon of a father who wanted nothing whatsoever to do with her.

So she lands on Primrose Island with the intention of packing up the old beach house, selling it to the first person who’ll make an offer, and moving firmly on. But Joe Fraser, her late father’s neighbour, has some inconvenient news for her on that front.

Rose prepares for battle – only to find that the longer she spends on Primrose Island, and the more time she spends around Joe in particular, the more she begins to question everything she thought she knew…


Holly has shared an extract with us today. You know what to do – grab that drink, the comfortable chair and enjoy. 


*****beginning of extract*****


The Island Castle – Book 5, Primrose Island Novellas

The spectacular Dornie Castle across the tidal causeway from Primrose Island has a trio of new owners: the Hansen brothers from Norway.

The brothers won the castle in a dubious bet – but unfortunately for the old castle, none of them are remotely serious about becoming its custodians.

Hackles are raising and feathers are ruffling all over the island. But none of that is going to stop Elspeth McGillicuddy from embarking on a match-making frenzy. Because if Elspeth McGillicuddy can find each of these bachelor brothers a romantic match on Primrose Island?

Well, they might very well decide to stick around… mightn’t they?

Extract: Chapter One

 The room was sombre and dimly lit and redolent with the masculine scent of leather and cigars.

And tonight, this sombre masculine room – it had been their grandfather’s study – was rendered all the more solemn because their grandfather, Lars Hansen, one of Norway’s wealthiest shipping titans, the founding father of HansenLine International – was dead.

Four men in black suits, their expressions heavy with grief, were seated around a table in the dead man’s study.

The man’s son.

And the man’s three grandsons.

The four were gathered alone in the masculine gloom of the late titan’s study because this was how it was done in their family.

This was how matters were settled.

This was how they mourned.

Magnus Hansen, the eldest grandson, looked around the table at his uncle, at his two brothers, and then he stared for a time at the stacks of poker chips and the deck of cards in front of them.

When his uncle spoke, it was to say, simply, “Deal.”

So Magnus dealt.

The night would be a long one, he knew. Tumblers of whisky would be filled and raised to the now-departed patriarch. Poker chips would clink. Cards would be shuffled and dealt. And as the grieving men played, these actions, these sounds, would become a soothing rhythm. A familiar comfort to them in the midst of their loss. A shared solace. A shared experience of honouring the man through the game he loved – and according to whose rules he had often operated.

It was to be the forum, per their grandfather’s wishes, in which their uncle would take them through their considerable inheritance – shares in the family’s billion-dollar-annual-turnover shipping company, along with innumerable assets and investments.

When he had briefed his nephews on all they needed to know, the brothers’ uncle paused, lingering over the last of the whisky in his tumbler, and looking at each of them in turn.

“Of course, your grandfather being your grandfather kept a few surprises up his sleeve, also,” he said, enigmatically.

The older man then produced two envelopes and placed them in the centre of the table.

“He wanted you brothers to choose one of these,” he said, looking again at each of them in turn.

Magnus, the eldest. The thoughtful, responsible one, people tended to say. The serious one, his brothers tended to say. They were probably right.

Henrik, the youngest. The one with the glint in his eyes and the mischievous grin. The one most like his grandfather. Which was both a good thing and also… a complicated thing, in Magnus’s opinion.

And, finally, Jakob, the middle brother. Ever more distant, these days, Magnus felt. He was pulling away from them.

Pulling away from family.

Perhaps they were all pulling away from each other.

 “You may choose only one,” their uncle was saying, interrupting Magnus’s thoughts, “you must bet on only one, boys,” he added, something mischievous flashing in his eyes now, too.

Magnus shot a look at his brothers before settling his eyes back on his uncle.

“Do you know what’s in these, Uncle Jonas?” Henrik said.

Their uncle shrugged and shook his head, his face inscrutable.


Magnus looked again at the two envelopes in the middle of the table and found himself glancing about the room at his grandfather’s photographs. The framed industry awards. The souvenirs from his travels. A photograph of him as a young man with his arm slung around his grandmother. Another of his uncles and his own late father as boys, freckle-faced and grinning on their father’s boat.

Magnus couldn’t explain why, but he felt a cold sensation at the back of his neck. A sense almost that something – what though? Fate? – was about to come into play.

He looked at Henrik. Looked at Jakob. And then he looked once again at his uncle.

“Well?” his uncle repeated, lifting a brow, indicating the envelopes again. “Which is it to be?” He pushed both envelopes a little closer to Magnus – Magnus being the eldest.

“This one? Or this one?”

*****end of extract*****



About Holly Wyld  –

Holly lives in the wilds of Scotland with her family.

When she’s not busy writing books she’s probably curled up with one in a cosy corner somewhere!

Currently, Holly’s busy working on her Primrose Island novella series with lots of cosy, heartwarming stories to come in 2023!

Click to buy A Scottish Island Surprise, which is part of the Primrose Island Novellas. 


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I’m Laura. I started Novel Kicks in 2009. I wanted a place to post my writing as well as give other writers like me the opportunity to do the same. There is also a monthly book club, a writing room which features writing prompts, book reviews, competitions, author interviews and guest posts.

I grew up by the sea (my favourite place in the world) and I currently live in Hampshire. I am married to Chris, have a cat named Buddy and I would love to be a writer. I’m trying to write the novel I’ve talked so much about writing if only I could stop pressing delete. I’ve loved writing since creative writing classes in primary school. I have always wanted to see my teacher Miss Sayers again and thank her for the encouragement. When not trying to write the novel or writing snippets of stories on anything I can get my hands on, I love reading, dancing like a loon and singing to myself very badly. My current obsession is Once Upon a Time and I would be happy to live with magic in the enchanted forest surrounded by all those wonderful stories provided that world also included Harry Potter. I love reading chick lit. contemporary fiction and novels with mystery.

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