Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Here we are at the end of the WESTERN ROUNDUP GIVEAWAY HOP. Winners will be announced on Friday, August 1st. (Where the heck did July go?) To end with a bang, I’m reviewing one of my favorite reads for the past year. I’m all fangirl about anything Jacquie Rogers writes. I wouldn’t have believed doing so to be possible, but each of her books is better than the last.

**I’ll give away a copy of MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS to one person who comments on the tour.

MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS by Jacquie Rogers is the long awaited continuation to MUCH ADO ABOUT MARSHALS. I speak for myself as well as others of Ms Rogers’ fans. Daisy Gardner and Cole Richards in MUCH ADO ABOUT MARSHALS were a perfect couple. Cole is one of my favorite fictional heroes. Ah, but in MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS, Kade McKinnon surpasses Cole in hero status.  

Here’s the synopsis of MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS, the fourth novel in the Hearts of Owyhee series:

Cupid’s bullet...
Hired gun Kade McKinnon interrupts a bank holdup and is shot by the teller, Iris Gardner, whose victims have a tendency to be the next groom in town. Will he be the groom this time?

Cupid’s bow...
Iris Gardner, a smart, independent bank clerk, fell in love with Kade when she was too young to know better. So when he walks back into her life and her bank, it's only fitting that she shoots him ... by accident, of course. But she’s a suffragist now, so his charms can’t affect her...right?

Cupid’s blindfold...
Kade doesn’t know Iris’s company is the one who hired him to escort a bullion shipment, and Iris doesn’t know Kade owns the security company, but they both know robbers are on their trail. Which is more likely to be stolen—the silver, or his heart? 

Here’s my review:

Iris Gardner, the spectacle-wearing bank teller in Silver City (1885) is victim of an attempted robbery. In the first book of the series, Iris shot Cole Richards. In this book, Iris shoots Kade McKinnon.  She is not trigger happy, but is a confirmed suffragist who defends the bank against robbers. The fact that men keep getting in between her gun and the robbers is not her fault.

Kade has come to Silver City to help his family freight bullion from their mine. He has a reputation as a hired gun, but no one except his partner Phineas Stratford and, eventually, Sheriff Sidney Adler know Kade owns Prospero Security Transport. He’s hoping to meet with Ivan M. Bonnet, owner of the Bonnet Consortium that hired him to transport his family’s ore.

There is no Mr. Bonnet, however. The consortium is a group of women investors headed by Iris Gardner. They have been organized for a year and believe that after this shipment is delivered safely, they will each be independent.

I never give spoilers in my reviews. I will say that this is a fun book. Not only did MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS keep me smiling, it is filled with action and adventure—and romance. The secondary characters are as cleverly crafted as the hero and heroine. I cannot conceive of anyone who would fail to love this book. If possible, I’d give it higher than a 5 out of 5 stars.

Amazon buy link:

Books by Jacquie Rogers
Hearts of Owyhee series (western historical romance)
#1: Much Ado About Marshals
#2: Much Ado About Madams
#3: Much Ado About Mavericks
#4: Much Ado About Miners

Single title western historical romance
Sleight of Heart

Novellas and short stories by Jacquie Rogers
Willow, Wish for Me (western historical fantasy romance)
Faery Merry Christmas (fantasy romance)

Non-fiction by Ann Charles and Jacquie Rogers
Growing Your Audience: Workbook for Published, Unpublished, and Under-published Writers
Nail It! The Secret to Building an Effective Fiction Writer's Platform

Short stories for Western Fictioneers anthologies and for Prairie Rose Publications anthologies.Show more

You can keep up with Jacquie at her blog,, on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and her website.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, July 28, 2014


As a reminder, I'm giving away three ebook copies of THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP to commenters during this giveaway hop. Leave your email to qualify.

As a reader and as a writer, I love heroines who match the hero for strength of will and intelligence—with a little humor tossed into the mix. While the hero may be physically more powerful, the heroine must be resourceful. Since I loved visiting Bavaria, I’ve wanted to write a heroine from there. I live in Texas, and many Germans settled the Texas Hill Country near Austin and San Antonio.

For THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP, I needed a stubborn, determined woman who could match wits with the hero, Storm Kincaid, a rancher temporarily a Federal Marshal. After deliberation, Renata “Rena” Hausmann Dmitriev appeared.

When her grandfather-like husband is murdered, Rena will no longer stand for injustice. In Bavaria, she had seen her father murdered when she was twelve. Rescued by kindly Adam Dmitriev, she had traveled with Abram as his granddaughter until she was fifteen. Due to her being Christian and him being Jewish, they fit in no community. In the hope of warding off unwanted attentions as her beauty blossomed, she and Abram married, but never consummated the marriage. Instead, Abram continued to treat her as his granddaughter.

Rena and Abram came to Texas to start over. All the while, Abram taught her English and saved for her dowry so she could marry well when he died. That day came seven years later. Rena had always been a dutiful daughter and wife-in-name-only. When four killers tortured and robbed Abram, outrage replaced Rena’s patience. While the murderers did their foul work, she had followed Abram’s instructions and hidden in the secret place he’d constructed.

But no more! This time, Rena is determined to avenge Abram’s murder. She’s donned a pair of Abram’s trousers and has the pistol he taught her to fire. When Storm Kincaid arrives and helps bury Abram, Rena tells Storm she saw the faces of the gang members. She vows to shoot at least one of the evil men.

Cover design by the fabulous Kim Killion

Storm says he is chasing the men, who are probably heading from Central Texas toward Indian Territory, a hard ride and one they might not survive when finally confronting the men. Rena is insistent that she will shoot at least one of the men who killed Abram. Rather than have her riding off on her own, Storm agrees to let her accompany him. The two ride north across the Texas ranching county.

Nothing stops Rena. She is wounded crossing the flooded Colorado River. She is almost trapped inside a burning cabin helping Storm rescue three children orphaned by the same killers, and helps Storm when one of the killers shoots him in the leg. The adults and children are caught in a choking dust storm, but make their own shelter.

When the killers try to abduct Rena, she is able to shoot one to save Storm’s life. But she doesn’t have time to revel in vengeance because Storm’s injury has become infected. The local doctor wants to amputate Storm’s leg, but Rena refuses. How could Storm ride around his ranch with only one leg? Instead, she wires his sister who is an herbalist healer.

While taking care of the three children, Rena follows instructions to treat Storm until his sister can arrive by train. When Storm’s sister and brother in law arrive, Rena thinks all will now be well. As the family travels to Storm’s home by train, they all fall asleep. But the brother of one killer is seeking his own retribution. During the night, their train cars are disconnected and the killer attacks. Rena helps Storm battle the unknown assailant.

Rena has traveled from Bavaria to Texas. She thought all she wanted was avenge Abram, recover her dowry, settle in a nice town, and enjoy meeting suitable young men. She’s learned that she wants Storm Kincaid and their three little ones, that life with him holds all she desires.

She emerged from the brush straightening her trousers and shoving her pistol back into her waistband. “Where do you think those men are going?”
“Indian Territory. They’ll steal all they can before they reach the Red River and leave no survivors to identify them. They’re selling off the stolen stock along the way, so that will slow them some.” He wondered if she knew how to use the gun.
“But I saw their faces.”
He sent her what he hoped was a frightening stare. “If they knew that, you’d be dead for sure.”
She shivered, but glared at him. “Do not think to frighten me. I will do everything I can to kill these men and reclaim my gold and my mother’s locket. It is not that I care about the jewelry that once belonged to Abram’s wife. But to him, it meant a great deal, and I want it because he gave it to me.”
Storm wanted to shake her. Not that he hadn’t lived all his life with stubborn women. At least his oldest sister Pearl made sense. He’d worried about shy Sarah, especially when she’d appeared head over heels with a con man. Now that Sarah and Nate were married, she had life figured out. Nate had surprised everyone, even himself. Storm suppressed a smile and worked up his anger again at his traveling companion.
“We can be in Llano by nightfall. We’ll get a couple of rooms there and you can rest.”
She shot him a suspicious glare. “You think to abandon me in that town. If we stay somewhere, we will be in the same room so I can watch you.”
Shocked, Storm wondered what he could do with this woman. “We wouldn’t be allowed to stay in a decent hotel. You want to sleep over a saloon? Besides that, folks will be shocked when they see you in those trousers. You want people to think you’re a fallen woman?”
With her chin raised, she placed her hands on her hips. “I am a good woman. You can tell them we are married and I wear britches to ride more easily.” She held up her hand and wiggled her fingers. “I have a wedding band, see?”
He raised his hands and backed up a step. “Oh, no. I’m not even pretending to be married. If I were ready to marry, which I’m not, I’d pick a woman who knew when to let a man do his job.”
“Ha, and when I recover my dowry, I will marry a man who knows a woman can do as much as a man.”
He swept a formal bow. “And when you marry, will you be wearing the lovely gown you now wear?”
She appeared angry enough to use that Colt on him. “You are wrong to…to talk so. I do not have the English words to tell you what I think, but do not try to leave me behind. If you do, I will go after the men alone.”
Disgusted, Storm stomped over and retrieved the horses. “Then let’s go.”

Buy Links:

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Friday, July 25, 2014


Welcome to another entry in our WESTERN ROUNDUP GIVEAWAY HOP. Prizes are offered at each participating blog (there are 18 of us), so comment here and then head over to each of the other participating blogs and comment there to be eligible for other prizes.

Here at A WRITER'S LIFE, I'm giving away three ebooks of GABE KINCAID and THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP, two of KATIE AND THE IRISH TEXAN, and I'm adding two of JUDGE NOT, the story for today. Winners will be announced on August 1st.

Elsie Parry and her eight mules survived the war, but can they escape the wrath of the Danby Gang? She lived alone for five years after the Recent Unpleasantness and was overcome with happiness to be reunited with her father. Now, his fondest desire is to leave all the bad memories behind and see the Pacific Ocean, so she agreed to head west. All’s well until they approach Wolf Creek, where they’re set upon by the notorious gang of ex-Confederate guerrillas… intent on proving the war is not over, after all.

This is not Ms Rogers’ first story involving mules. She has several books in which a mule becomes a secondary character. My favorite is MUCH ADO ABOUT MARSHALS, with a to-die-for leading man and a secondary character who rides a mule—a racing mule.

But this is about JUDGE NOT: THE MULESKINNERS #1. This story first appeared in the anthology HELL ON THE PRAIRIE, written by Jacquie Rogers and several other members of a western group called Western Fictioneers. This story is only 10,000 words, 38 pages, published by Western Trail Blazer. Don’t be deluded by the length. Ms Rogers packs a lot of adventure and a dose of her special sense of humor into this story. At only 99 cents, readers have a bargain!

First, choosing any book or story by Ms Rogers is a wise choice. In addition to fast-paced western adventure, romance, and a wry way with humor, Ms Rogers’ books offer readers a well-researched plot that always delivers a satisfying read. As you can tell, I am one of her fans and have been for years. I’m also a member of her Facebook group, PICKLE BARREL BAR AND BOOKS, and receive her newsletter, THE PICKLE BARREL GAZETTE.

I give JUDGE NOT: THE MULESKINNERS #1 a five star rating and believe readers will share my opinion. I also urge readers to dive into her Hearts of Owyhee (Idaho) series, beginning with MUCH ADO ABOUT MARSHALS. You can purchase the book at multiple sites. Here is the link for Amazon:

About the Author

Jacquie Rogers, Author

Jacquie Rogers is a former software designer, campaign manager, deli clerk, and cow milker. Her 2007 release, Faery Special Romances, won the Fall NOR Award for Best Print Sci-fi/Fantasy Romance and finaled several other contests. She donated all royalties from FAERY SPECIAL ROMANCES to The Children's Tumor Foundation, ending neurofibromatosis through research. She also has stories in other print anthologies. Her current print release/EBook is MUCH ADO ABOUT MINERS, which has received several top picks and 5-star reviews.

She teaches several workshops both online and in person, and is co-creator of 1st Turning Point, a website where authors come to teach, learn, and share--all about promotion and marketing. Learn more about Jacquie Rogers at 

Find her blog at


Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

THE HUSBAND MAKER BY KAREY WHITE and Western Roundup Continues

Husband Maker Tour

The Husband Maker by Karey White

Charlotte’s a girl with nicknames. She may not love being called Charles or Chuck, but the hardest nickname to take is the one she was given in college, the one that’s followed her now for too many years. They call her “the husband maker” and sadly, it fits. Every guy she’s dated since high school has become his next girlfriend’s husband. Not hers. Not three girlfriends down the road. The next.

Is she doing something wrong or is she just cursed?

When Kyle Aldsworth enters the picture and sweeps her off her feet, Charlotte begins to hope that maybe she's not destined to be single forever. A senator’s son with political aspirations of his own, Kyle's wealthy, handsome, and in need of a wife. Will Charlotte be disappointed yet again, or will she finally be able to make a husband for herself?

Get your copy of The Husband Maker for just $3.99!

add to goodreads new

Mrs. Shelton’s words bounced around in my head. They call her the husband maker.

“That’s quite a frown you’ve got going there.”


Angus dipped his head, forcing me to make eye contact with him.

“Don’t be sorry. Just talk to me.”

“Have you heard anyone call me the husband maker?”

Angus leaned back in the booth and shook his head. His dark, worried eyes watched me. “Who told you about that?”

“So you have?” When he didn’t immediately speak, I knew the answer. I sighed and leaned back against my seat as well.

There we sat, both of us slouching against our seats, looking at each other.

“Why didn’t you tell me?” I whispered.

“Now why would I do that? Why would I purposely tell you something that would hurt your feelings?”

I should have appreciated his desire to spare me, but at the moment, I wasn’t sure what to think. “Wouldn’t a real friend be honest with me?”

“I was honest. If you’d ever asked me, I’d have told you. I wouldn’t have lied to you. But I don’t think a real friend would jump at the chance to share something hurtful. Wouldn’t a real friend be protective?”

I shrugged.

“Who told you?”

“No one.”

“Then how—?”

“I overheard Hannah Shelton’s mom in the restroom. She was telling some other woman that everyone calls me the husband maker.”

“Not everyone, Chuck.”

“You know what I mean. And why shouldn’t they? There I was at Harrison’s wedding. I guess I just made him a husband. I guess I made Skyler a husband. And CJ and Jerry and . . . I can keep going if you want me to.” I would have kept going to illustrate my point, but my voice was starting to quiver, and in a minute, I’d only have two options—cry or yell at Angus. As upset as I was that he’d never told me, I knew he didn’t deserve to be yelled at. He was here for therapy, after all.


His voice was full of concern, and he used my given name, so I knew he wasn’t kidding around.

“What?” My voice cracked.

He shook his head. “Don’t worry about what people say. You’ve had bad luck. That’s all. It isn’t your fault.”

The waitress brought out our food. “Can I get you anything else?”

“This is great, thanks.” Angus wasted no time piling food on his plate. “I hope you’re hungry,” he said after she left.

“I can’t believe we’re eating this much food at almost ten.”

“If the food doesn’t take your mind off all this junk, the heartburn will.”

I laughed.

Angus’s voice turned serious again. “If you wish I’d have told you, I’m sorry I didn’t.”

I nodded. I wasn’t sure I wanted the answer, but I had to ask. “Have you ever called me that?”

“Of course not.”


Karey White

Karey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist.

She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

Coming Fall 2014 - Charlotte's Story continues in The Match Maker
The Matchmaker final ebook cover
add to goodreads new

$25 Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 8/15/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the publisher. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Thanks for stopping by! To participate in the WESTERN ROUNDUP GIVEAWAY HOP, please scroll down to the previous post and leave your comment there. Come back on Friday for another addition to the WESTERN ROUNDUP GIVEAWAY HOP! 

Monday, July 21, 2014


Continuing with the Western Roundup Giveaway Hop, today I'm featuring a book by Carra Copelin, one of my critique partners. Carra is the author of the Code series, which is contemporary. However, she has planned a historical introduction to the families in her contemporary series. The first of these is a short novella titled KATIE AND THE IRISH TEXAN. I love this story and want to share part of it with you. In addition to the copies of my books I'm giving away on August 1st, I'll give away two copies of KATIE AND THE IRISH TEXAN.

Here is the information about Carra's book: 


Dermot McTiernan is determined to move on with his life after losing his one and only love to another man. He decides to try his hand at ranching in North Central Texas with his friend, Ian Benning. He figures if that doesn't work out, there are many other opportunities in the booming post-war state. When the luscious red-head from County Cork, Ireland shows up in Dallas, can he retain the courage of his convictions and move on without her?

Kathleen O'Donnell made a monumental mistake marrying, Kelsey Gilhooley. Her decision for entering the union, no matter how honorable, had made her life a living hell. Even though still married, she holds out hope for finding the man of her dreams. When she comes across her tall, dark-eyed Irishman in Dallas, Texas, will she be able to abandon happiness and walk away a second time?

Isn't this a gorgeous cover?


Dermot looked around the room and its many patrons. Most were men dressed in black business suits. He noticed two women serving food and drinks, one a tall brunette, the other had red hair worn in a long single braid down the center of her back. He sincerely hoped the brunette served them because he wanted nothing else to remind him of Katie O'Donnell What-ever-her-married-name-was.

He closed his eyes to the memory and swore he caught a whiff of her scent. His imagination was playing a cruel trick. He thought to get up and leave, but before he could tell Ian he'd changed his mind about eating, a female voice whispered in a familiar brogue. "Jesus, Mary, and Joseph."

Kathleen O'Donnell Gilhooley almost swallowed her tongue. The very moment she'd prayed for since the day she'd left Ireland a year ago had materialized, yet she wanted to run as far and as fast as she could. She'd hoped to meet Dermot McTiernan dressed in her best, but obviously the saints had other plans.

Hands shaking, she smoothed the humidity-laden curls back from around her face, and blotted the perspiration from her forehead with the hem of her apron. Trying her best to hide her nervousness, she stepped forward, shoulders squared. "Dermot, is it really you?"

"It would appear so, wouldn't it?" He stared past her to the window apparently fascinated by the activity on the street.

There was no way she could've known how he'd react to seeing her for the first time in almost ten years, but his tone took her aback none-the-less.  She wondered if he'd gotten her letter explaining the circumstances surrounding her union with Kelsey Gilhooley.  From his reaction this morning, she guessed he hadn't. Either that or it hadn't made a difference.

Well, that was okay. They were here now and, hopefully, with time on her side, she could make him understand. "How many eggs for ye?"

Dermot's friend and the taller of the two by a couple of inches, spoke up first. "I'll have four, please."

Kathleen waited patiently for Dermot to speak. He took so long, she wondered if he'd gone mute in the last minute and a half.

Finally, he lifted his head, looked her straight in the eye but spoke to his companion, "Ian Benning, this is Katie O'Donnell."

"Pleased to meet you, ma'am." The man stood, offered his hand in greeting.

She shook his hand, correcting her name, "Kathleen Gilhooley, 'tis my pleasure." She directed her attention back to Dermot. "Will ye be havin' four eggs, as well?"


After turning in the order, she checked on the pan of biscuits she'd left cooking in the oven. She'd placed them in to bake just before going out to help Sarah take orders. Normally she liked to help out in the dining room instead of being cooped up in the over-heated kitchen. This morning, however, turned out to be a different story.

Following what just happened in the dining room, she certainly questioned her decision to leave her homeland. She might've expected anger when they met, discomfort to be sure. What he'd exhibited had been much different. He'd been distant and sullen. That scared her more than any outburst.

She put two biscuits on each plate and took them to the table. The man introduced to her as Ian, thanked her. Dermot said nothing until she grabbed the pot and poured each of them a cup of coffee. The hurt and betrayal in his eyes wounded her far more than any physical injury she'd endured in her marriage to that drunken monster Gilhooley.

As she turned to walk away, he grabbed her hand demanding, "What're ye doin' here?"

His tone set her off and, while she knew it wasn't rational, that he was trying to defend himself by making the first strike. But she'd learned to protect herself, too, and rose to the bait. "'Tis a free country and I can be here if I want." She backed away in an effort to pull her hand from his grasp, but he only tightened his grip.

"I want to know why you're here," he demanded through clenched jaws. "How could ye've done such a thing to me?"

Ian stood. "McTiernan, calm down and let her go."

"I'll let her go when she gives me a good answer."

Kathleen looked about the large room in a panic. Every one of the café's patrons watched the scene with interest including the owner, Mr. Browder, who was walking in their direction. She feared what Dermot might say and she needed this job to keep her room above the establishment.

"Can we talk outside?" she pleaded. With one last great tug, she wrenched her hand loose but the motion sent her reeling backwards into the table behind her where she sat in a plate of fried eggs and a bowl of strawberry jam. A couple of gentlemen, their mouths agape, helped her stand, after which they returned to their seats. Her face heated with humiliation, she straightened to face her boss.

"Mrs. Gilhooley, please return to the kitchen. I'll handle the situation from here." He turned to Dermot and Ian. "I apologize for the interruption to your meal. Let Sarah or me know if there's anything else you require."

Kathleen entered through the kitchen door, as Mr. Browder aided the diner who'd lost his eggs to her backside. The whole incident had been embarrassing enough without having to sashay through the dining room with bright yellow yolks streaming down her green skirts.

Mrs. Browder waited for her with a wet soapy rag. "What in the world caused all that commotion?"

"A reunion with an old friend that didn't go as well as I'd hoped."

"I see."

Sarah came into the kitchen carrying the customer's empty plate. Her look was one of wary amusement. "Mr. Browder said to replace Mr. Smith's breakfast right away."

Kathleen took the egg soaked rag from Mrs. Browder and, while the older woman fussed over cooking the gentleman's eggs, she found she didn't care if her dress could be saved. She really didn't even care if she lost her job.

The only thing that mattered to her more than her livelihood or a place to lay her head at night was Dermot. She had to talk to him and make him understand she'd married to ensure a good future for her parents. After that, well, she didn't know yet but, being the optimist she was, something was bound to turn up. 


KATIE AND THE IRISH TEXAN, The McTiernans, ia available on Amazon in ebook and print.

About the author

Carra Copelin

Carra was born in Dallas, Texas and raised a few miles to the west just a stone's throw from where the Dallas Cowboys now call home. Unlike other authors, she didn't write from childhood or read long into the night beneath the covers, but discovered romance novels as an adult. Little by little, as she read her way through hundreds of books, she discovered there were many people residing in her head. With all of them demanding their stories be told, she decided to give writing a try. From that day she was hooked, and, even though life took over for a while, she's busy bringing her characters to life. 

She is a member of Romance Writers of America and President of the Yellow Rose Romance Writers. When she's not writing she loves creating and plotting with her fabulous critique partners [ta da! one of whom is moi], watching NCIS and NASCAR, and visiting with her three beautiful grandchildren. She and her husband reside in Arlington.

You can find her on the web at and at her blog, Under Texas Skies, at 


Don't forget to stop by the other blogs in this Western Roundup Giveaway Hop!

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