God is a stripper. A male stripper. Only Ria has no idea. She is just getting over the fact that there is a God and that he is sexy as hell, has a great sense of humour and seems to like to explore her scatterbrain. If only he would explore her body as well. But every time he tries, he has a panic attack. No wonder, the two find themselves one morning in Manhattan's top psychiatric clinic. Straight out of the strip club.
The Book's Creation
If you know anything about me, I have a spiritual background and one of my personal challenges is to ground myself and not get stuck in my head. On the plus side, I never get bored with myself because my mind is quite literally a cave of wonders with never-ending rabbit holes. On the downside, it’s been a challenge to get a routine and stay in physical reality, as and when needed. Self-development and constant practice are key factors, of course.
Having many spiritual friends, one of them is a gifted artists who paints, sculpts and does gardening. She is amazing how she always creates in physical form, yet at the same time, when she is in her studio, in her zone, she is having parties with her guides and other light beings, some of which are the spirits of deceased musicians and singers whose music she likes to play while working. And she had ever-changing hair colours over years. So Ria is mainly inspired by a mix of these two women – myself and my friend, plus, some other aspects, uniquely her own.
Being so much stuck in her own world, it is understandable that she needs a lot of me-time and cannot cope with a relationship like her BFF Izzy (the FMC of Book 1 of The BFF Diaries) has. So when she meets Jordan, who is a lot more grounded but also at a stage in his life where he requires a lot more peace and quiet, the two instantly connect.
I wrote this book during the time I was coming out of a massive burnout and Jordan is in part my way of dealing with these mental challenges and experiences, although I’ve not gone the same route in detail. After all, I’m a mother and couldn’t just take off for healing in the way he does in this book. But some aspects are there and it was cathartic to write his character’s story in this way. This is the background of my two MCs in this book and, of course, you also meet Izzy, her men and their other BFF who is also Izzy’s assistant, Lucia, whose sister Reyna features in Book 3 of the series in Reyna’s Dancers.
However, Ria is the only FMC in the series who has a single-man relationship and when you get to know her, you will understand why. I couldn’t have written it any differently and I hope you’ll fall in love as much with the characters as I did while bringing them to life on the pages of this book.
I am an artist, a spiritual person. I need a lot of peace and quiet and alone time, at least in my head. That’s why I get on so well with my best friends. I don’t have many close friends but those I have, get me. They know when I’m suddenly off in my head it doesn’t mean I’m not interested in what they’re saying. I’m having a vision of a Goddess, my next painting or a present for them. I love giving presents. Really personal ones that I know will totally make them scream with delight. I’m extremely good at finding those things, too.
That’s why I’m here, to look for some utensils for my next present for Dante. He needs tools and we all put our money together, made a list and I am the designated person to pick them up, so Dante won’t find out. He’s quite clever and would if anyone else got them. But he’d not think I’d get a present for him in a million years. But I am. And I am going to make a statue out of it all that he has to dismantle one by one. I know he will be sorry to destroy my work of art.
Dante doesn’t have much sense for art but he loves everything I do. Genuinely. He isn’t just being polite about it like Yann who only thinks of things in a way as to how he can use it as a kinky toy of some sort. At least that’s what Izzy tells us. It’s his kink. But Dante will be sorry and take lots of pictures, look at it from all angles and admire it before taking it apart.
With each tool he unwraps, there will be a bad memory slip that Izzy wrote on a piece of paper she sealed with wax. Not that I would read it if she had told me not to. And she knows that. But she wants Dante to know his secrets don’t get passed around with the girls. It looks cute, too. I cut her a seal from a potato and she used it to put her mark on the hot wax. It’s a nice touch. Dante will know that with each part he takes off, he lets go of an old, unhappy memory and that he uses the wisdom and knowledge he has gained to build a new, better life.
Izzy had loved the idea when we thought it up one night and got straight to work, using some self-made paper of mine to write on with a calligraphy pen and sealing the notes with red wax. Manu sent a list of items together with links from a local hardware store, so we’d be sure not to get the wrong ones. So here I was, looking for a special kind of screwdriver and finding myself face-to-face with a god in the flesh. And all that comes out of my mouth is, “Excuse me, I need to screw.”
His eyes widen and I slap my hands over my mouth.
“I need to find a screwdriver,” I quickly qualify from behind my hands.
The god looks like he is trying to hide a wide smirk and only manages to downsize it to a small but all the more sexy one. It looks like it’s an insider joke he’s so amused about. I want the earth to open up and swallow me. But I stand transfixed. This man is nothing but a sight for sore eyes. And I can’t get past and the assistant I stopped to ask where to find the power screwdrivers told me to search in this aisle towards the end and look on the right. God is standing in my way. And I have become religious. Enlightened. Whatever I am, I stand there and can’t move, even if he did step aside.
“What kind of screwdriver do you need?” God asks me.
“A turbo power one,” I say. “And you stand in my way.”
I swear I didn’t mean to be rude. It came out all wrong. But he steps away, his face closing off.
“I’m sorry,” he murmurs and walks past me and disappears around the corner.
I am so contrite, I have tears welling up in my eyes. I hurt this man and he isn’t really God. He’s got feelings, too. And I just hurt those feelings. And he is definitely not used to someone doing that, so he most likely doesn’t have a coping mechanism and feels it all the more acutely and painfully than an ordinary mortal would. And before I know it, I am running after him.
“Excuse me!” I call. “Excuse me!”
He turns around to look at me, half surprised, half annoyed and not quite certain which emotion to settle on. But he stops walking with those megalomaniously long legs of his. Is that a word? If not, it has to be one now. Nothing else will do for those legs. They are not only long, they are perfectly proportioned and strong. He’s got a crunchy butt, powerful thighs and strong calves. My fingers are already itching with the need to paint him.
Before I can lose momentum and clam up again, I have verbal diarrhoea and spill all my thoughts out unfiltered and tell him I never wanted to hurt his feelings, all I wanted was to screwdrive my way down the aisle and it came out all wrong and I was terribly sorry and I wanted to paint him or at least draw him in coal.
“Woah! Easy, love,” he says and raises a hand to ward off the onslaught of all those words. “Take a breath or you’ll faint.”
I take a deep breath after considering his prediction and agreeing that he might have a point there.
“Better?” he asks.
“So you came after me to apologise because you want to paint me?”
“No, I came after you to apologise because I hurt your feelings. I only realised as I was running after you that I wanted to paint you,” I corrected and mentally kicked myself in the teeth for admitting I had been running after him.
He’d seen me running. I didn’t have to point it out to him, too. I was pathetic and coming across like a crazy person already.
“I like your hair,” he suddenly says.
“Which colour is it today? I forgot,” I say and God bursts into peals of laughter.
At least he isn’t angry with me anymore. God has a wicked sense of humour. That’s a good thing, right?
Reviews for Ria's Healing
This story has touched my heart so deeply!
Ria is a spiritual artist whose head is mostly absent in other dimensions. She has spirit guides with which she parties in her studio and when she holds conversations, half of it happens in her head, so following her responses can be a bit of a challenge for people who talk to her. Her hair is as colourful as her creativity and her spiritual beliefs do not incorporate the typical kind of Christian concept of God. Until she meets Jordan and believes him to be God at first. Then she wants nothing more but to paint his behind. Yes, all of him from the rearview. And don't get me started on her verbal reaction to him!
Jordan has had a difficult childhood. His father left the family early on and his mother, stricken with grief, turned to the bottle to cope with the pain, leaving Jordan to fend for himself for the most part. But Jordan has been successful in turning his adversities into strength and has built himself a stripper empire, owning his own nightclub in Manhattan and being world-famous. Women pay enormous amounts of money to spend time with him, not only with him dancing.
When he meets Ria, however, in a hardware store of all places, his old demons rise to the surface, however, and he suddenly experiences an anxiety attack. This is how these two completely different characters form an unlikely alliance and friendship that turns to love. If only there wasn't the problem with Jordan fretting over being too good in bed, fearing it could destroy all they have between them.
When you hear male stripper, you probably first think of Magic Mike. I did. I expected something similar, although with a lot more depth, knowing the author's style already. But then, it all comes completely different. This book had me laughing out loud, rooting for the two, groaning in agony and suspense and yes, I was in tears as well.
The characters came to life off the pages and I so felt for them that I couldn't help but really live in this story. I felt for Ria and Jordan, laughed, cried and fretted with them. There were such tender moments and such great acts of friendship as we meet the characters from Book 1, Izzy's Law, of The BFF Diaries series again. One of Izzy's men, Yann, actually plays an important role in this story as well, which also moved me deeply.
The unforeseen twists and characters kept me on my toes and turning the pages. I am amazed at and impressed with the author's sensitivity and knowledgeable handling of the subject of mental health issues without making it too depressing and dark. She shines a light on taboo subjects and lets them shine not in their negativity but ultimately brings a positive lesson learned and a "Night of the Soul" turns into bright daylight.
If you ever need a pick-me-up and a story that will make you believe in the rainbows at the end of the dark thunderstorms of life, this author is a definite go-to. No matter, how unique and eccentric a character is, she shows the positive aspects of a person, their strengths and a good influence on the people in their lives. She also showcases how supportive friendships can help a person reach their full potential and develop a belief in and love for themselves. Ria, Izzy and Lucia are the best BFFs I've yet come across in romantic literature. They are real, all different but complement each other perfectly. And their mutual support is exemplary.
Ria's Healing is an amazing read and it also makes sense why this is not a reverse harem but a one-on-one story. But read it for yourself and thank me later!
Hot 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 five stars for Ria!
I loved this book. The beginning had me all cracking up laughing 😆. I could so relate to Ria:
“My fingers are already itching with the need to paint him. Before I can lose momentum and clam up again, I have verbal diarrhoea and spill all my thoughts out unfiltered...”
This could have been me. Verbal diarrhoea. 🤣
Tirza Schaefer expertly manages to combine positive elements like humour true friendship, trust and sexual tension before plunging us into the abyss of Jordan’s battered and abused, anxiety-ridden mind. She then gently takes us on a healing process that wasn’t only a revelation for the characters, but also for me.
I loved the multiple layers of meaning, the understanding of the human psyche and the energies involved, showing them as colours of the soul.
Going full circle, the end is full of love, positivity and steamy release. Tirza Schaefer, thank you for the happy end 💖
Finishing this book left me in a state of bliss that simply made me feel good all over. Deserved five stars!
J.C. Seal, Author
Talk about anticipation!
Jordan is a man with heavy baggage and Ria was just the right woman to lift it from his arms.
A charming read.
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I totally fell in love with Ría and Jordan. The opening chapters when they meet at a hardware store are SO funny.
‘I need to screw...I mean a screwdriver!’
I was laughing my ass off. Both characters are so well developed and are so intricate I fell in live with both. This is an opposites attract novel and I am rooting for them until the end.
I love that the characters don’t jump into bed right away, the author teases us for awhile before giving us a good finale. That’s one of the things I liked about the novel the most. The growing connection and anticipation. Love this series.
Lyndsay Whitlock, Author
Wow! Now this, I didn't see coming at all.
After the family-oriented and pragmatic Izzy (Izzy's Law, Book 1 of The BFF Diaries), which was a reverse harem with three men, Ria's Healing is quite a change. A slow burn, one-on-one romance with a very deep topic. Anxiety. And it's not Ria who suffers from it. It's the man she falls in love with, the stripper (although she doesn't know he's a world-famous stripper) Jordan. And Jordan is literally scared out of his wits to have sex with Ria. This story starts with a hilarious first encounter when Ria thinks, Jordan is God and wants to paint screw him. Or paint him. Well, she is a bit out of this world but in a really cute way. And she has the biggest heart you can imagine.
I loved this book because the author is not afraid to go into the darker recesses of a man's mind with a traumatic past. But it's not overly dark and there is, of course, a happy ending. Still, I would have loved to have a little more action on Ria's side because I was so taken by this lovely spiritual artist that I wanted more of her.
I am happy to report that I took the liberty to reach out to the author and she was so kind as to reply and told me, we will see more of Ria in Book 3, Reyna, which is not yet published but there will be a lot more to come. I can't wait to read more of this series. From what the author shared with me, it's going to be hotter, deeper and with more men, too. Ria is going to be the only one-on-one romance in the series but Tirza Schaefer explained that Ria needs a lot of peace and quiet to be creative and having to concentrate on more than one man in the worldly realm would just be too much for her.
And Jordan has had his wild times. He's fed up with being surrounded by women who just want in his panties and Ria is the only one he feels at peace with and really seen. Until he tries to have sex with her, that is. But find out for yourself! Definitely a great book!
And check out the author's website. There are some great videos on The BFF Diaries page as well. Love that website, anyway. It's brilliant. You can see Tirza Schaefer's love and devotion to her craft for sure!
Tuari Eagleswing, Reader
A great read!
After meeting the main character Ria, in "Izzy's Law", the previous book in this series, I was really looking forward to hearing her story. I certainly haven't been disappointed. Tirza writes so movingly, Ria and Jordan's love story, overcoming so much together to achieve their happiness.
Just wonderful, and full of compassion as well as beautifully written sensuous and passionate love scenes. Looking forward to the next in this lovely series. Many thanks!
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This is a deeply emotional book. Jordan has huge problems stemming from his childhood causing anxiety when he meets Ria. Jordan is a god to women and Ria is his goddess. No one is better fitting than these two characters.
I loved the humor and the emotional ride. Ria has a wonderful personality and is a fantastic character.
Kim Kurtz, Reader