Ryatt – Hathaway House Book 18 by Dale Mayer

Hathaway House Book 18
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer



After a rough start at Hathaway House and a major reboot in attitude, Ryatt still struggles to get his feet under him at the center. Seeing his sister back here hit him harder than he expected. He would like to think that, once here, he had a free pass for the rest of his life—but apparently not. Now he needs to see real progress, everlasting change, to make that future for himself that he’s rather desperate to have.

Lana always looked at life with a happy, fun-loving attitude. She loves working at Hathaway and interacting with the patients and staff. It’s heartwarming and rewarding work. Every once in a while she finds a patient who is reticent and even grumpy. That fits Ryatt, but she’s attracted to the dark broken depths of him.

But can she show him another way to live and to view the world? She hopes so, as he’s already helped her to see so much more in her own.


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Ryatt started out at Hathaway House angry and lashing out at everyone. When his sister Quinton ended up back as a patient, he considers it a failure for her. In a fit of pique, he requests to be transferred out, now he’s determined to stay and work through all his issues.

Ryatt is surprised when Lana knocks on his door, he’s sent her away in tears at one point. He starts off by apologizing for his behavior and they start a bit of a conversation having to do with attitudes. Lana is a happy person, and it tends to be contagious. She’s going to town to shop for residents and wants to know if he’d like her to pick up anything for him. He’s surprised he’d never thought of wanting something not readily available to him here. He also learns something more about the tablet he has that integrates with the system. He starts thinking about the licorice she mentioned and messages her. She calls back and he learns something yet again he didn’t know before. Fighting everything around him he really missed out on some things.

Ryatt still doesn’t believe he’s improving at all, yet Shane his PT sees it. Ryatt’s frustration is such that he is still questioning just about everything. Shane doesn’t pull any punches and tells it like it is.

Shane also overhears when Ryatt asks Lana to have lunch with him. A date of sorts.

This is a favorite scene.

She nodded in understanding. “It’s all good.” She pointed outside to the table that she had saved for them. “I didn’t know if you wanted sunshine or not.”

“Today I’m tired,” he murmured, “so the sun will just take more out of me than I’ve got to give but I’d love to catch a few minutes.”

She laughed. “Good enough. Do you want to sit there for a moment and relax or come to the buffet first?”

“Let’s get into line, so we don’t have to wait too much longer for food.”

She stepped in front of him and pulled out the trays that they needed to move along. She’d handle that, while Ryatt had his hands full with his crutches. As she did so, Dennis looked up at her and smiled. “So what’ll it be?”

“I was looking for a salad. Your cooking is killing my weight.”

“You don’t have any kind of a weight issue at all,” he said, shaking his head. “So don’t be worrying about things you don’t need to.”

“Yeah, but, if I don’t keep an eye on it,” she said, with an eye roll, “it’ll become a bigger problem.”

At that, he burst out laughing. “Well, I won’t argue with you on that point because there could be some truth to it.” She smiled at him. “Anyway, how about some chicken on your salad?” At her nod, Dennis made up a vegetable salad, and added chicken and lots of feta cheese.

She stared at the salad in awe. “That’s gorgeous,” she murmured.

“Good.” Dennis handed her the salad, which she added to her tray.

She walked over and grabbed a juice and a small fruit salad for her dessert, chock-full of berries. With that on her tray too, she placed it on their table and looked back to see how Ryatt was doing. He was holding his own, pushing his tray along the ledge of the buffet, except his plate held twice the food that hers did. She returned to him, picked up his tray, and led the way outside.

She smiled when they got to the table. “Wow. You’ve really done yourself in, with that amount of food.”

“I eat this much every day.” He gave her half a smile.

She shook her head. “I would be fifty pounds heavier if I did that.”

“I’m just trying to feed my damaged muscles, which are trying to heal. It takes a lot of protein.”

“I get it,” she murmured, “but it’s a good thing it’s you and not me. I don’t think I could eat that kind of quantity.”

He smiled. “You’d be surprised. I am hungry every day.” Even as he sat here, working his way through his plateful, Dennis arrived with a large shake, a peculiar almost pinky-green color.

She winced, didn’t know how those two colors could even go together. She looked at Dennis. And then she caught the look on Ryatt’s face and laughed. “So that’s more medicinal than fun, huh?”

Ryatt nodded. “Dennis keeps giving me these shakes, getting me to take this stuff, then keeps doctoring up the recipe in different forms all the time, hoping to make it palatable.”

“That’s because it’s good for you,” Dennis murmured. “It will help move you forward a lot faster. It’s chock-full of greens, vitamins, minerals— all the good stuff that you need.”

“I could get it from eating five more plates of this too,” he murmured.

Dennis laughed. “I know you’re a good eater, but not even you can eat all the whole vegetables to get all the minerals and vitamins and nutrients that your body needs right now. Bottoms up.”

“You are probably right,” Ryatt murmured. He picked up the shake, took a sip from the straw, tilted his head to the side as he considered it, and then he looked up at Dennis. “You know what? This one’s not bad.”

Dennis rolled his eyes. “None of them were bad.”

“This one’s great though.”

And Dennis nodded, took his tray full of more healthy shakes, and walked around, handing them off to various patients.

“So does he just do this as an extra offering for the patients?” she wondered out loud.

“I think so, for anybody whose deficiencies are not being met— according to his standards and maybe the nurses and doctors and Shane too,” Ryatt said in a laughing voice. “Dennis is always mixing up these heavy-duty nutritional drinks to help us get through the day.”

“And that’s wonderful of him,” she noted, wondering at all the things she didn’t know about here.

“It is.” Ryatt nodded in agreement. “So many things happen here that I didn’t really appreciate, not when I first arrived.”

“Why were you so angry?” There, she’d done it. She’d asked point-blank what was going on in his head that told him how everything was so terrible.

“I was angry at the world, not at anyone here,” he explained. “I’d just been told I couldn’t have surgery to remove a piece of metal in my back, and it’s something I’ll have to live with. I arrived here, thinking that I would be a cripple forever and that they were only taking me on because of my sister.” He laughed, shook his head, and added, “What can I say? I was an idiot. But I was just so traumatized by everything that had gone on with my accident and afterward that I wasn’t willing and ready to see the good things around me.”

He lifted the large glass with his odd-colored shake. “Things like this. I do tease Dennis on a regular basis because, when he first brought them to me, I was horrified with the taste, of that initial one especially. They were so rough to get down,” he shared honestly. “I lost the first one. It came right back up. Dennis immediately started trying out new flavors.

I’m kind of like a guinea pig here.” Ryatt smiled. “And I appreciate it. I know he’s trying to get me back on my feet, and maybe, just maybe, I’ll make it. Yet, at the moment, it seems so far away.”

“I don’t think it’s as far away as you think.” She took a bite of her salad, paused to chew and swallow, and then added, “One of the best benefits here is the food.”

He laughed. “Agreed.”
Dale Mayer. Ryatt (Kindle Locations 377-425). Valley Publishing Ltd..

We get to see all different aspects of Ryatt’s treatments. Those with Shane and also with the psychologist. Both are so important in navigating recovery as is the developing relationship with Lana.

We see Quinton again and of course Stan and the animals. Dennis seems to always find a way into the stories with his excellent food and advice.  Hathaway House surely has everything to help towards successful recovery.

One of the things I love about these books is how different they are. Everyone is different and while injuries may be similar, no two are exactly alike. The same is true for the people with said injuries.

I can’t wait to read the next book in this series.

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

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Dale Mayer

Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).

She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!

To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.

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