Wednesday, December 30, 2015


Finally, finally, finally! After months of preparation and waiting, my American Mail-Order Bride Series #42, PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON, releases TODAY! I am beyond excited. And although it's not exactly a party except in my office where I'm dancing around, I'm offering a giveaway--check below in this post for prize details.

Although I prefer writing books set in Texas, which is where I live, Trinity Ford chose Texas so I needed to choose another state. After hemming and hawing around, I chose Washington. Jacquie Rogers and I decided our heroines would be sisters. Her book is MERCY, BRIDE OF IDAHO.

I enjoyed researching a new state, a new industry, and diving into a new situation. Fortunately, my husband and I used to have several hundred peach trees and also apples, pears, plums trees, as well as grape vines. So, I could visualize a commercial fruit orchard.

I hope you are lucky enough that you have NO idea how time-consuming pruning hundreds of fruit trees and harvesting fruit can be. Hero did much more pruning than I did, but I helped. If I’d thought about how much there was to do, I’d simply have given up and gone to the house. However, all I had to do was finish this tree and move to the next one, finish this tree and move to the next one, finish this tree and move to the next one—endlessly. Thankfully, we sold that land and now live in town on a lovely, neat, oak-tree-wooded lot complete with a yard man. Ah, but I digressed.

Patience Eaton and her sister lived with their parents in Lawrence, Massachusetts, where her father is the head teacher in a public school. Not much money for a family of five. When the sisters lose their jobs at the garment mill and factory, they are not successful at finding decent positions—although they try and have a series of misadventures.

Patience arrives in Washington when
the trees are in bloom--mmm.
Taking matters into his own hands, their father Moses Eaton arranges with the matchmaker Elizabeth Miller in Beckham for a groom for each daughter. And that’s what launches their adventure. Here’s the blurb for PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON:

Travel to Victorian America in 1890 with award winning and bestselling western romance author Caroline Clemmons for a humorous novel about two people destined for one another after a turbulent getting acquainted period. This book is sweet.

After a fire destroys the factory where Patience Eaton worked followed by a succession of job failures, she travels from Massachusetts to Washington to marry the man her father chose via a matchmaker. While Andrew Kincaid appears to be a very nice man, he’s older than her father and not someone she wants to marry. Her prospective groom places her in a respectable boarding house and agrees to give her a job in the office of his commercial apple orchard so she can learn about his life and business. But working alongside her handsome future stepson presents unexpected complications.

Two years ago, an unjust accusation ruined Stone Kincaid’s chance at happiness. Now he concentrates all his energy on building the family business. When he meets his prospective stepmother, he’s angry that his father cares so little for his mother’s memory that he sent for a mail-order bride younger than Stone.  He believes Patience to be interested only in his father’s fortune. Stone plans to keep an eye on the attractive woman who’s slated to become his stepmother.  

Can two people working at cross purposes arrive at a compromise?

Here’s an excerpt from PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON:

On an April evening, Moses Eaton addressed his daughters. “Several months ago, you brought home something called the Grooms’ Gazette. I saved the copy. After your letter from your friend Roberta, I wrote to the matchmaker, Elizabeth Miller.” Her father handed each of them a letter. “These are in answer. You will each leave on the same train, so you’ll travel together until Mercy leaves at a place called Nampa, Idaho.”
Mercy’s eyes grew wide. “Idaho? T-That’s all the way across the country.”
Patience scanned the paper she held and her heart broke. “Not as far as Washington. Papa, we’ll never see you and Mama and the boys again. I know we’ve upset you but please don’t send us away in disgrace.”
Mama said, “Girls, you’ve got everything wrong. Your father is only looking out for you two. You know how hopeless situations here are. We love you so much, he wants you provided for and secure.”
Papa smiled at Mama then looked at Patience and Mercy. “Your mother is correct. There are more women here than there are jobs—or suitable men to marry. The way things are in Lawrence, you can’t earn a good wage even if you find a position. My teacher’s salary barely stretches.” He held up his hand. “We’d manage somehow if there were prospects for you here.”
He rose and paced. “Each of your prospective grooms is well-to-do and can offer you a nice home and security. Perhaps you can even travel back here for a visit from time to time.”
Patience re-read the letter from Andrew Kincaid. “He sounds nice, and he enclosed a ticket and money for meals. He said I’d have a month to get acquainted before the wedding.”
“Mr. Isaac Fairchild says the same.” A frown furrowed Mercy’s lovely face as she looked up from the sheets of paper in her hand. “But Idaho is so far.”
“But it’s close to Washington. We can probably visit back and forth.” Patience tried for a positive attitude, but neither she nor her sister had ever been away from their parents or one another.
Her brothers clomped into the room. 
Twelve-year-old Jason looked at the adults. “Why’s everyone so serious? What’s going on?”
Papa patted ten-year-old David on the head and smiled at Jason. “Your sisters are deciding whether or not to accept marriage proposals.”
“From who?” David asked.
Papa thumped the boy on the head. “From whom, young man. You know to use whom when you use a preposition before the word.”
Rubbing his scalp, David said, “Sorry, Papa. I’ll try to remember.”
Jason held out his hands. “Please just tell us who proposed?”
Holding up her letter, Patience gazed at her two brothers. “Papa wrote to a matchmaker, a woman who arranges marriages. Mercy and I have answers. Her groom is in Idaho and mine in Washington.”
Jason rose to look at the globe where it sat on a table by the window. “That’s a long way from here. When would you leave?”
Mercy consulted the letter. “In five days. Oh, my, we have a lot to accomplish before then.”
Ticking off on her fingers, Patience listed, “We’ll each need a trunk and a valise. Let our friends know how to write us. Do the laundry so everything is clean.”
 “And we can’t share things since we’ll be in different places.” Mercy rose to get a sheet of paper from Papa’s desk. “We’d better make lists.”
 Later in the bed they shared, Mercy said, “I can’t believe Papa wrote away without consulting us. I don’t know whether to be relieved or angry or sad.”
“I’m a little of all those. Thank heavens I never again have to work for a man with lecherous thoughts. I’ll miss our family, but I’ll have my own home and soon my own children.”
“You’re right. Oh, I hope we like our grooms-to-be. Mine lives on a ranch. I hope he’s handsome and strong and rides a white horse.”
Patience reminded her sister, “I remember that Roberta said Miss Miller investigates the grooms before she’ll send a bride to them. She works with agents all over the country. Even if the men are not ideal, at least we know they’re not criminals or drunkards.”
“Four days to get ready and on the fifth, we leave. We’ll ride on a train and see the country and then we’ll meet our grooms. How can you not be more enthusiastic?”
Pulling the cover under her chin, Patience admitted, “I’m kind of excited. I’ve never ridden on a train or been out of Massachusetts.”
“Ha, we’ve never been out of Lawrence. That’s going to change.”

All American Mail-Order Bride Series books are available through Kindle Unlimited. Not a member? The books are only $2.99 each from Amazon. Amazon Link: 

Would you do it?—be a mail-order bride if there was no chance of a suitable marriage where you lived? I'm not sure what I would have done, but I think I might have. 

Grand Prize For Series

The entire American Mail-Order Brides Series group is awarding a Kindle stocked with books from the 45 authors who have participated in the series. Not the books in this series, but other books. This Kindle will be given away at the end of the releases on January 7. Go to to learn more or the Pioneer Hearts Facebook Group.

Other Prizes From Me!

Prize 1: Today/tomorrow, I'll give away a $25 gift card to one winner. 

Prize 2: In addition, I will be awarding a prize pack to someone who leaves a review for PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON between now and midnight on January 7. The prize pack includes apple-themed products, chocolate, swag, and surprises.

For a look at real-life mail-order brides, check out the book by Chris Enss, HEARTS WEST: TRUE STORIES OF MAIL-ORDER BRIDES ON THE FRONTIER. Some are dire, others are happy. Of course, I hope you read PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON first. 

On the 31st, snap up Jacquie Rogers' MERCY, BRIDE OF IDAHO.

I love my readers and appreciate your encouragement. Mwah! Sending you hugs and kisses! 

Have a Happy and Prosperous New Year filled with health, happiness, wealth, lots of good books and time to read them!


katsrus said...

Sounds like a really good book. Loved the excerpt. Pretty cover.
Sue B

GiniRifkin said...

Great excerpt Caroline. Makes me wonder what lies ahead for both young women. Beautiful cover.

Earl Staggs said...

Looks and sounds great, Caroline. All my best wishes for continued success.