Guest Post: The Trail Rules by Melanie Hooyenga, Author of The Trail Rules and The Slope Rules *****Giveaway*****
The Trail Rules (The Rules Series #2)
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 9th 2018
Junior year’s looking up for sixteen-year old Mike. Her new BFF isn’t a sadistic control freak, her boyfriend adores her, and she’s learning to bike in the mountains without decapitating herself on a tree.
When she meets a group of riders who welcome her into their pack, she feels like she’s finally found where she belongs. One particular rider—a boy with an amazing smile and an even more amazing ability to see what she’s truly capable of—gives her the confidence to go after what she wants: her own life with her own rules.
There’s only one problem—he’s not her boyfriend.
Just as things seem to be falling into place, her parents put on the pressure to figure out her future—one that doesn’t include riding. Mike soon realizes that having everything isn’t that great when she’s not the one choosing it. She needs to decide if she’s going to continue to be a follower or step out of the shadows and find her own trail.
Guest Post by Author Melanie Hooyenga
Cycling and The Trail Rules
I’ve always loved sports. Give me something physical and I’m there. I’ve tried pretty much every sport under the sun, and since I’ve skied since I was five, writing about downhill skiing made total sense. But that was The Slope Rules, the first book in The Rules Series.
For The Trail Rules, I decided to write about mountain biking because many skiers and snowboarders bike in the off-season—never mind the fact that the riskiest maneuver I’ve tried on my bike is hopping a curb into oncoming traffic. But I didn’t let that stop me. I interviewed an avid biker to understand the terminology, gear, and what happens when riders encounter each other on the trail. My favorite line in the book, “there’s a hiker in every biker,” comes from that research.
Mike, the main character in Trail Rules, is a beginner rider and is deathly afraid of crashing into trees— a fear she get from me. At the beginning of the book, her boyfriend Evan is teaching her, and the story follows her growing self-esteem and increasing skills on a bike. She meets a new group of friends who are both fearless and welcoming, and starts to realize that everything she thought she wanted isn’t enough.
Because I’m not an experienced rider, I didn’t feel comfortable writing a main character who is, so instead I made her new friends the experts. They drop the lingo and jumps Mike wishes she could, and encourage her to push herself farther. The book is packed with tree-lined trails, spectacular crashes, and a few glimpses at legs so muscular they take your breath away.
In The Trail Rules, cycling is what gives Mike the confidence to figure out what she really wants and go after it, no matter what anyone else thinks. By the end of the book she learns there’s more to life than following the crowd.
While not a fan of matching Day-Glo outfits, Melanie’s been skiing since she was five and always points her tips up while exiting the chairlift. She lives in the land of lake effect snow—also known as west Michigan—with her husband Jeremy and Miniature Schnauzer Owen, and is always looking for ways to enjoy the outdoors. This novel, her fourth, inspired her to purchase her first helmet.
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