Wednesday, May 08, 2019
A BRIDE FOR GIDEON, #16 PROXY BRIDES SERIES
What an exciting week for me! A BRIDE FOR GIDEON releases May 9th and has been available on preorder for a couple of weeks. This is #16 of the popular Proxy Brides Series, a multi-author project. I’m so honored to participate in this project. The beautiful cover was designed by Virginia McKevitt.
I'll be giving away a $25 Amazon gift card to one person who comments on this blog between now and midnight May 12.
A BRIDE FOR GIDEON takes place in Montana in 1871. Here’s the blurb:
Keira desperately wants to belong somewhere
Gideon is haunted by a secret too horrible to share
Fate conspires against them…
Keira Cameron came to Boston from Scotland after the death of her parents. She wanted a job, a husband, and eventually a family. She feels rejected because she’s too tall, too foreign, and too pretty for a wife to want Keira working near her husband. Were her expectations unreasonable? Her cousin convinces her to enter a proxy marriage to his friend, Gideon Ross, who lives in Montana Territory. Out of options, she agrees and hopes her goals will be realized.
Gideon Ross is a large man at five inches over six feet. His business is a smithy and gun repair shop. The war left him with a terrible scar on his face. He wears a beard to try to conceal the scar but still hears people whisper he’s a monster and a giant. Do they think he has no feelings? He’s haunted by the war and has terrible nightmares. Reluctantly, he agrees to wed Keira by proxy.
Outside forces work against the couple. Keira and Gideon must find the key to the attack on their lives. Can they defeat the enemy before they’re too late?
I love writing books with outside forces working against the hero and heroine. The more mayhem in the story, the more I enjoy writing. I also enjoy humor in a book but that I write is subtle. Still, I hope readers find a smile tugging at them once in a while.
The Universal Amazon buy link is http://mybook.to/Keira A BRIDE FOR GIDEON is available in e-book, print, and is in KU.
Here’s an excerpt from A BRIDE FOR GIDEON of when he finds out his sister and brother-in-law have arranged a proxy marriage for him:
Darren strutted around in front of Gideon. “So what do you think about Keira?
Following Darren’s conversations was always a winding road. “Who?”
“Keira Cameron, the girl I’ve been telling you about, who else?” Darren rubbed his hands together expectantly. “Shall I set up your part of the proxy wedding this afternoon?”
Gideon leaned on the anvil. “Are your ears plugged then? I said I’m not interested.”
Darren pulled off his cap and wrung the thing in his hands while a worried expression hovered on his face. “Well, you see now, Gideon, there might be a problem with you saying no.”
Gideon stood with his hammer in one hand and stared at his best friend. With Darren and Orla’s scheming, he had no need for enemies. “What have you done this time?”
Darren’s eyes widened and he backed two steps and held up a staying hand. “Now take it easy, Gideon, until you’ve heard me tell it all. You see, Keira’s done the proxy wedding on her end and is on her way here.”
Gideon laid down the hammer and tongs and stared at his friend. Surely he’d misunderstood Darren’s prattling. “She’s what?”
“She’ll be on the five o’clock stage today.”
He hadn’t gotten the wrong idea, drat his luck. “Auch, the time must be near four now.”
Darren pulled out his pocket watch. “Aye, half past three. We’d better get you wedded on this end before she arrives.”
Gideon advanced on his friend. “What the devil is wrong with you, man? How could you let this situation get so far out of control before you told me? What do you intend to do when this woman arrives and there’s no groom to meet her?”
He stabbed a finger in Darren’s chest. “You’d better decide fast.”
Darren’s wheedling tone of voice changed to demanding. “Now look here, Gideon Ross. Don’t be mistreating the nice lassie because you’re put out with me. It’s coming on cold weather and you’ll be happy for a wife to warm your bed. Plus, having a wife in your arms at night may stop your nightmares.”
He shook his head, sorrow claiming him. “I doubt anything will make the night terrors cease. Nothing even makes them less.”
“You’ll be surprised. Having Orla next to me has done wonders. Besides, you admitted you wanted a wife and a family.”
He exhaled. Would the man never shut up? “Maybe I’ve changed my mind.”
At six feet to Gideon’s six foot five inches, Darren stared up into his face. “You know you haven’t. Don’t let your stubborn pride prevent you from marrying the one lassie perfect for you. Alec’s description sounds like you and Keira are well matched in height and temperament and the other things you enjoy.”
Gideon couldn’t resist leading on his friend. “Is she a blacksmith going to help in the smithy then or does she repair guns?”
“Don’t be daft, man. You know I mean things you do when you’re not working.”
When would that be? Lately he was working from can until can’t. “Such as?”
“She likes to read and play chess and go outdoors for walks and such. She wants a home and children and the security of a good man. How can you fault her for that?”
“Auch, I’m not faulting her, you idiot. You’re the one whose neck I’d like to wring. I’ll bet your wife—my own little sister—knew about this and conspired with you against me. Am I right?”
Darren wouldn’t meet his gaze. “Orla and I might have talked the possibilities over between us. Listen, Gideon, the idea came to us only because we think so highly of you and want you to be happy. Orla especially worries about your well being.”
The truth of what his friend said softened his anger. “Well, you’re in a fine mess now, aren’t you? How did this woman come by the funds for the train and stage fare?”
Darren grimaced. “Um, well, you see, Orla took the money from her inheritance, the money from your grandparents’ estate. She said there was no better use for it than seeing her dear brother happy.”
Gideon hated that his sister had used part of her money on his behalf. What was Darren thinking to let her? Gideon took a deep breath. Auch, what was he thinking himself? There was no “letting” Orla do anything. His sister was stubborn as a stone once she’d made up her mind.
He frowned and pointed at his friend. “Through no fault of her own you’re bringing a woman over two thousand miles under false pretenses.”
“But, don’t you see? They’re not false if you wed her by proxy before she arrives. Orla is waiting at the parsonage until you and I show up. She’ll stand in for Keira and I’ll be a witness. Come on, Gideon, you won’t be sorry.”
“What’s the point? She’ll soon be here and I can marry her then if I wish.”
Darren did a few fast steps to get in front of him. “No, can’t you see that won’t work? Think about the situation. She’s already married you by proxy in Boston and believes herself properly wed. You have to do the same before she arrives, else I don’t know what will happen. Don’t let being peevish with me cause you to hurt Keira.”
Gideon found himself weakening. In truth he would like a wife to come home to each day. He admitted he’d been depressed since Ella had publicly rejected him six months ago. Was he that unlovable? Her privately recanting her criticism recently had done little to soothe his hurt even as it made him glad he wasn’t married to the fickle woman.
He looked down at his leather apron tied over his grimy work clothes. “Did you not think I might like to look a little better on my wedding day? Did you not consider that this Keira might appreciate coming to a clean home?”
Darren tugged on his arm. “Come to the church parsonage now. While you’re at the stage stop, Orla and I will nip over to your house and tidy it a bit.”
Recalling the state of his home, Gideon shook his head. “A ‘bit’ won’t do the job. You know I’ve been rushed with jobs and working all hours for months. I haven’t cleaned in… well, it’s been a while. Unless I’m mistaken, I don’t even have a clean shirt. Once again, you’ve created a mess with your meddling.”
Darren refused to be daunted. “Don’t give it a second thought. Orla and I will make things presentable while you’re meeting the stage.”
Resigned to Darren and Orla’s manipulation, Gideon removed his apron. He must be losing his mind. He told himself he was only agreeing to spare this Keira the humiliation he’d experienced.
Fact was, not only curiosity fueled him. He admitted he was lonely. He looked forward to a wife sharing his life.
I hope you’ll join me in celebrating this release and that you’ll buy and read A BRIDE FOR GIDEON. If you enjoy the book, please leave a review on Amazon. I’ll appreciate it and you’ll be helping me and other readers.