Friday, June 28, 2024


 By Caroline Clemmons

A couple of friends and I were at lunch a few days ago. One of the numerous subjects that came up was: what in books and movies scares us? What scares you so much you sleep with the lights on? These friends and I meet to discuss writing and books. Mostly.

In books, every great hero or heroine has a flaw and/or a secret. His secret is something he would be embarrassed to admit or that he believes might damage his reputation and employment. For example, tough and seemingly fearless Indiana Jones feared snakes. So, he had to deal with a lot of them at once. Shudder.

In KEITH AND THE MAIL ORDER BRIDE, banker Keith Martin fears people learning his family are crooks, especially if a family member came to town. Such a revelation would cause bank customers to withdraw their money as well as shun him. You can get your copy of e-book or print at Amazon here:


 Writing terrifying scenes is sometimes intriguing. In THE MOST UNSUITABLE HUSBAND, the rogue-ish hero had been buried alive and barely escaped before he suffocated. As a result, he feared confined dark spaces. Can you blame him? Imagine how difficult it was for him to crawl through a narrow tunnel to enter a cave and rescue a child, but that’s aside from the main plot. I’m so pleased that book has been very popular with readers. Get your copy of e-book or print at Amazon here: -



Who would fear a precious baby? How about a rugged bounty hunter, a bachelor, who has never been around children? He finds the baby crying after criminals kill the little girl’s parents. He loads up her belongings to take to the person who adopts her. No one he can trust will take the child. You guessed it—STUART becomes a dad. It’s a fun story. If you haven’t read it, you’ll find it at Amazon here:  


In HIGH STAKES BRIDE, Alice Price fears the big cave her rescuer takes he to, but not as much as she fears the two men chasing her. The cavern appears endless, and she realizes her rescuer, Zach Stone, has used it many times. I love Alice—she’s as klutzy as I am. Wish I looked like her! If you haven’t yet read this book, it’sw available in e-book, print, and from audible.



Whatever you choose, reading expands your mind and delays dementia. I and many other historical authors do a lot of research to make sure details in our books are credible. So, in addition to being entertained, you’ll learn painlessly at the same time. Buying and reading our books makes us happy. We want you to love the fruits of our labor.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, June 24, 2024

Pieces of Blue by Liz Flaherty

Pieces of Blue
by Liz Flaherty


 My intent, once I got rolling on Pieces of Blue, was to write Maggie’s story. Just that. She’s a natural-born loner, so maybe just this once, I could keep the character count in a book at a manageable level. Lots of others writers do it; surely I could, too. 

But everyone—at least everyone who makes herself at home in my keyboard—needs a best friend, so we met Ellie Wentz, a nurse practitioner whose been Maggie’s “ride or die” since they were in second grade. Then, when Maggie was walking around the lake, she stopped to look at the pristine little church and, before she kept walking, she met its pastor. Young Cari Newland went to culinary school and ended up in the pulpit—go figure.  

Then there’s Sam, who’s Maggie’s lawyer friend. Who suddenly gives her frissons. She’s a writer; she really likes the word frisson. When he appeared to me, he looked like Mark Harmon in his 50s, but to Maggie, he just looks like Sam. And he gives her frissons.  

I hope you love Maggie’s story as much as I do, and…hey…if you get a frisson or two along the way, all the better.  

Book Blurb: 

Life comes in shades of blue... 

      Self-imposed loner, Maggie North, has worked for bestselling author Trilby Winterroad her entire adult life, starting as simply his assistant and ending up as his ghost writer. Through ups and downs--including a divorce from an abusive husband--he has been the one person on whom she could always rely. So when Trilby dies suddenly, Maggie finds herself adrift, not sure what she’ll do or where she belongs in the world any longer. And the confusion continues when she discovers he’s not only left her his beloved dachshund, Chloe, but a house she knew nothing about, on a lake she’s never heard of. 

It only takes one visit for Maggie to fall in love with both the house and the small lakeside community. The longer she’s there, the safer she feels and the more her life begins to do her feelings toward her friend and Trilby’s attorney, Sam Eldridge. 

       But is she really safe? Or are the glistening pieces of her new life about to shatter as an old danger returns? 

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There were ten of us that night, all women. A few drove together from Placer to join us. Several of them had been at coffee that morning. We entertained each other by explaining why we were or were not wearing the same clothes we’d worn then. 

The night was warm, the air soft. I looked at them as we walked and talked. I listened to their stories—Trilby taught me a lot about listening and its importance.  

We’ve all known struggles and heartbreak; several of us have known physical abuse. Sadie had lived in her car for a while. Rose had left Colby in Detroit and come to the lake, saying he could come or go; it was up to him. Adrian told the story of her Uncle Henry’s father beating his wife half to death because their son “wasn’t right.”  

Maxine said her husband had raised his hand to her exactly one time and she told him he’d better not let it fall or he’d never, ever be able to go to sleep again. We laughed at that, but she didn’t. “I was scared to death and so was he. Not that I’d kill him, but that he’d gotten so angry over something minor. He got himself to an anger management therapist and I went along with him. But I’m aware every day that we’re the lucky ones. Our lives could have gone a whole different way from that day forward than what it did.” 

We’ve laughed together at the images people have of others’ lives. While Harper Loch doesn’t look anything like a resort or even a high point on rural Michigan’s social scale, it does look like a place where bad things can’t happen. Where marriages are all good, no one uses illegal substances, and everyone is safe.  

But we know better—and it’s not lost on me how often I use the word we when I talk about the lake. We’ve absorbed each other’s pain. I didn’t know how Cari could bear the weight of the secrets she kept.  

 “How many women around here have been abused? Not just on the lake, but in the area.” 

“More than we know,” Rose acknowledged. “Just like anywhere. Some talk about it, but more than a few don’t.” 

“Many,” Haley agreed. “Because they think it’s their fault or it’s never going to happen again or they don’t have any alternatives.” 

I thought of those women. Of their children. I thought of the people who’d circled the proverbial wagons around me to keep me safe. I thought of Cari and Ellie and the confidences they kept and carried with them. I thought of Aunt Lin and Claire and Annabelle and how strong they’d been when their lives turned on them. 

I thought of the ashes. And of the sapphires. 

Author Bio: 

Liz Flaherty has spent the past several years enjoying not working a day job, making terrible crafts, and writing stories in which the people aren’t young, brilliant, or even beautiful. She’s decided (and has to re-decide most every day) that the definition of success is having a good time. Along with her husband of lo, these many years, kids, grands, friends, and the occasional cat, she’s doing just that. You can reach her at or find her anywhere on She’d love to hear from you. 

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Finding Love by Julie Navickas



Who says you can’t find love over a plate of mushroom ravioli?

Finding Love

Clumsy Little Hearts Trilogy Book 2

by Julie Navickas

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Who says you can’t find love over a plate of mushroom ravioli?

Rachel Prescott has always dated the wrong men.Each relationship begins with hope, but within months ends with “nope.”The harder she tries, the harder she fails. That is, until the new owner of Pier Ninety-Two, Miguel Rodriguez, spots her wallowing over her latest dating disaster in his restaurant.

Easily smitten with the brown-haired beauty, Miguel offers her his heart. Or at least, what’s left of it. Because Miguel has had his own troubled past finding the right woman. With the echo of lost love still haunting his heart, he convinces himself he’s ready to move on—and who better with than the spunky, sexy, and strong-willed, Rachel Prescott?

Over a bottle of wine (or two), Miguel and Rachel instantly connect. And by the end of the evening, it’s more than their shared plate of mushroom ravioli left steaming.

Best-selling and award-winning author Julie Navickas tugs at your heartstrings in her second book in the Clumsy Little Hearts trilogy about love and letting go of the past. Fans of KG Fletcher’s The Reining Hearts Series and Katie Cotugno’s How to Love will find a new one-click buy with Ms. Navickas’ romances. Fall in love with imperfect, but perfect for the right person.

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Trusting Love

Clumsy Little Hearts Trilogy Book 1

What does a s’more, a tent, and a campfire have in common? For Ryan Prescott, it’s a typical weekend camping trip. But for Tess Browning… it’s a recipe for the truth.

Tess Browning earned the nickname Little Vixen for a reason. And she has no incentive to play by the rules anymore. Because why bother? All it ever did was trap her in a loveless marriage. Tossing faithfulness out the window, the only thing she is committed to now is her new code: keeping it fun, flirty, and deliciously sultry.

That is, until Ryan Prescott walks in and charms his way into her heart with a leather tool belt strapped around his waist. He’s sexy, smart, and as emotionally damaged as they come. And Ryan seemingly wants nothing more than to have Tess pick up the pieces of his broken heart.
But there’s one thing he doesn’t know about her.

When the details of Ryan’s past heartache come to light, Tess digs her hot pink heels into the ground and will stop at nothing to hide her past indiscretions from the man who stole her heart. Because if there’s one thing Ryan won’t tolerate—it’s dishonesty.

Will Tess manage to keep the truth hidden? Or, will the secrets of a lifetime shatter her one true chance at love?

Best-selling and award-winning author Julie Navickas brings back fan favorite, Tess Browning for her own shot at love. Readers of the Trading Heartbeats trilogy will recognize the flawed heroine but may not recognize the woman she’s become. After all, no one is above redemption. Fans of Lynn Painter’s Mr. Wrong Number and Katie Cotugno’s Birds of California will find a swoon-worthy and engaging romance in TRUSTING LOVE.

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Julie Navickas is a best-selling and award-winning, nationally recognized contemporary romance novelist, known for her keen ability to tell heart-wrenching, second-chance love stories through relatable characters with humility, humor, and heroism. She is also an award-winning university instructor in the School of Communication at Illinois State University. Julie earned master’s degrees in both organizational communication and English studies with an emphasis in book history, as well as a bachelor’s degree in public relations, graduating cum laude from Illinois State University. She is a mom of three and has been happily married to her high school sweetheart for twelve years.

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Monday, June 17, 2024

Stone of Fear by Margaret Izard




She’d give everything to keep his love. He’d chase her through time to save her soul. 

Stone of Fear

Stones of Iona Book 2

by Margaret Izard

Genre: Time Travel, Paranormal Romance 

She’d give everything to keep his love. He’d chase her through time to save her soul.

Marie Murray, a spunky expert on spiritual buildings, jumps at the opportunity to renovate the chapel mosaic floor at Dunstaffnage Castle, where she falls hard for the dashing John MacArthur. From their first kiss, sparks fly.

Believing her religious renovation creates magic, a fanatical priest kidnaps Marie. Obsessed with obtaining a powerful magic Stone of Iona, he drags her to 15th-century Scotland.

With his love kidnapped, John must tackle his hereditary duty and locate a magic Fae stone while chasing his love across time. Her memories of their passion keep her sane. His fuel his will to find her.

Will John get to Marie in time to save her soul?

What readers are saying:

Author Margaret Izard has done it again! With a prevalent theme of true eternal love that spans centuries, she will take you on a breathtaking adventure in Stone of Fear.

-Ronél Steyn 5-Stars Reader's Favorite

The world-building, setting, characterization, plot progression, and emotional narration blend to create a sweeping time travel romance. Every nuance is described so the reader feels like they are a part of the story. Breathtaking.

- N.N. Light 5 + Star Review!

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Stone of Love

Stones of Iona Book 1

Against all odds, is true love strong enough to save a human soul?

After leaving her abusive ex, American scholar Brielle DeVolt embarks on a career-changing opportunity, the renovation of Laird Colin MacDougall’s Chapel ruin. The attractive, broad-shouldered Laird leaves her weak-kneed, but can she trust herself to love again?

Dusted in construction dirt, the curvy beauty in his study captivates Colin. As Brielle steps to the window, her brunette tresses halo in the sunlight, and he sees her as his dream soul mate. When he learns his hereditary duty is safeguarding magic Fae stones, all he wants is to protect Brielle from the evil forces of the Fae.

Traveling to the past to assume his forefather’s identity and find a missing magic stone is challenging enough. When Brielle appears, an undeniable attraction to his ancestor ignites, causing her confused passion. Faced with fighting an evil Fae to save the realms, Colin must choose between saving the stone or saving his love.

What readers are saying:

It's a mesmerizing dance of passion and mystery, making it a must-read for anyone who craves a love story with a touch of enchantment. Literary Titan, 5 Stars, Gold Award Winner

The immersive narration is sweeping and filled with emotion. Outlander readers will clamor for more of Margaret’s books. N.N.Light 5++ Stars

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Margaret Izard is an award-winning author of historical fantasy and paranormal romance novels. She spent her early years through college to adulthood dedicated to dance, theater, and performing. Over the years, she developed a love for great storytelling in different mediums. She does not waste a good story, be it movement, the spoken, or the written word. She discovered historical romance novels in middle school, which combined her passion for romance, drama, and fantasy. She writes exciting plot lines, steamy love scenes and always falls for a strong male with a soft heart. She lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband and adult triplets and loves to hear from readers.

Watch out for the June 12th - 16th Facebook Release Party!

Stop by for some giveaways and fun on Facebook!

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Friday, June 14, 2024


 By Caroline Clemmons

 One of the most popular historical western romance series ever is the Pinkerton Matchmaker Series, conceived by the very clever Christine Sterling. The beautiful covers were designed by the late Virginia McKevitt. We were so sad when she passed away earlier this year. Authors lost a kind and generous friend.

When the series became affiliated with Barr26 Publishing, who plan to eventually produce an audio version of each book, the covers had to be changed. I hated to lose my lovely covers designed by Virginia. However, I’m happy to say those provided by Barr26 Publishing were as lovely as the originals.

The first I wrote was AN AGENT FOR MAGDALA, book 28. 4.7 stars. Writing is always hard work, mentally and physically, but I especially loved writing this story. I was able to use two of my favorite locations for the story—Santa Fe, New Mexico, and San Antonio, Texas. Each of those towns is very old and is unique. They were there before the Spanish claimed the land. Our family loves including them on a vacation. Even though they obviously have changed since the Spanish conquistadors, they are still unique. In San Antonio, the Menger Hotel is still a luxury hotel after close to 175 years, refurbished and expanded numerous times over the its reign. Our youngest daughter stayed there during an educator’s conference. The hotel is reported to be haunted, and she was disappointed that she didn’t have a ghostly encounter.

Magdala is ready to add adventure to her life when she learns the Denver Pinkerton office is accepting women as agents. She’s shocked—but not deterred—to learn she has to marry another agent to achiever her goal. She weds Cloud Ryan with the intention of getting an annulment once they’ve captured the jewel thieves plaguing the Menger Hotel. They face grave danger in solving the case.

Get your copy here:

 Years ago, our family drove through the harsh and desolate and strangely beautiful area known as “the badlands.” Seeing it made it easy to understand how criminals could hide there. AN AGENT FOR LYDIA, book 43, 4.6 stars, leads the couple to these badlands, where the agents come close to losing their lives while escaping with people they’ve rescued.

Backing up, Lydia Wood was left at the altar by Pinkerton agent Jake Hunter. She had no idea he was attacked and severely beaten and his identification stolen. In fact, he lies in a coma in the hospital. When he recovers consciousness, he realizes that if Lydia had been with him she might have been killed. She’s the most important person in his life. To protect her, he goes back to Denver without contacting her. Lydia is not willing to give up easily and determines to see what it is about being a Pinkerton agent that is so all-consuming.

Get your copy here:


By now, you know I love the Southwest. The state of New Mexico has desert and gorgeous mountains. The state motto of “Land of Enchantment” is easy to understand—especially if you watch the sunsets. Fortunately for Judith McAdams, AN AGENT FOR JUDITH, book 58, 4.6 stars, the search for her brother takes place in one of the loveliest areas. Having Pinkerton agent Peyton Knight and his men accompany her is reassuring, even though she had to enter a marriage of convenience with Peyton. The woman who raised Judith and her brother insists on coming along on the trip, too. The group is in for danger even before they contend with a vicious rancher holding her brother prisoner.

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I hope if you haven’t read these books, you will. Relax and take an exciting trip back to the Old West. I believe you will enjoy these books as much as I enjoyed writing them.

Thanks for stopping by. Stay safe and keep reading!


Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Romancing the Tropics Volume 2



These five short tropical romances, spanning from 1901 to the present day, will put you in the mood for sunshine and love. 

Romancing the Tropics

Volume 2

with stories by Leah Miles, Sara J. Walker, Vanessa Victoria Kilmer, Erika Kilmer Freidly, L.J. Green

Genre: Sweet Romance Anthology 

These five short tropical romances, spanning from 1901 to the present day, will put you in the mood for sunshine and love. This collection offers sweet to edgy stories perfect for lazing on the beach or poolside.

Join these couples as they defy the conventions and expectations of their worlds to embrace love’s fullest connection with their happily ever after waiting to be discovered.

Here’s what's inside:

Not Another Jack by Leah Miles

Her final wedding gig takes an unexpected turn when a hunky Navy SEAL crashes the party, reigniting old flames and stirring new misunderstandings amidst the choppy seas of love.

The Gardener’s Secret by Sara J. Walker

In the tranquil beauty of the Keys, love and deception collide. Will their journey lead to healing or heartbreak?

Catch As Catch Can by Vanessa Victoria Kilmer

A private investigator is out to find an online hacker of billions of dollars. Will she catch the thief or find someone even more valuable on Grand Cayman Island?

R&R, and a Rescue by Erika Kilmer Freidly

A couple of soulmates travel to St. Thomas for a much-needed vacation. They get caught up in the theft of Blackbeard’s coin.

Where Trade Winds Meet by L.J. Green

This story captures the blossoming connection between William and Muriel as they bond over their shared dreams of exploration and adventure, defying societal expectations and forging a deep, resolute bond in the vibrant setting of Key West, Florida in 1910.

Proceeds benefit the First Coast Romance Writers, an independent non-profit organization that helps writers hone their craft and expand their knowledge of the publishing industry.

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The authors participating in this anthology are members of First Coast Romance Writers (FCRW), and proceeds from this anthology benefit their organization. FCRW is a non-profit that welcomes both published and unpublished authors, as well as any individuals involved in writing and publishing. The chapter is dedicated to promoting excellence in romantic fiction through monthly meetings and workshops in a comfortable forum. They strive to help writers establish careers by providing innovative programs, networking opportunities and pertinent information on effective marketing techniques. Learn more about FCRW online at 

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Monday, June 10, 2024

A Wife For The Werewolf by Rose Kent



 Matchmaking monsters, one heart at a time.  

A Wife for the Werewolf

Monster Match Book 1

by Rose Kent

Genre: Paranormal Romance

 After inheriting her grandmother's business, Potion Palace, witch Kate Halloway struggles to keep it afloat. In a bold move inspired by the booming world of online matchmaking, she and her best friend Cassie launch Monster Match, a dating service for supernatural beings, hoping to boost sales.

But when their first client, alpha werewolf Trent Everwood, finds success with their help, a rival coven creates their own competing service using Kate's potion recipes. To make matters worse, a death occurs at one of their events. Kate becomes a prime suspect and must fight to clear Monster Match's name.

Trent also has his hands full as humans start breaking treaty laws and trespassing on pack lands. And just when things couldn't get any more complicated, a match between him and Kate threatens the stability of their lives. Can they save Monster Match from scandal and protect the Potion Palace?

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Chapter 1 



Adulting… the bane of my existence. I didn’t imagine myself saddled with so much financial responsibility before thirty. I pondered my current situation while seated at the small desk in the back of the Potion Palace, my grandmother’s shop, surrounded by stacks of bills and a calculator perched precariously atop them. This was my least favorite part of running a business—the constant battle of making ends meet and trying to stay afloat. I vowed when I inherited this business, I’d do everything in my power to make it succeed. 


I groaned into my lukewarm tea as the bell above the door jangled, making me jump. Looking up from the ledger where I keep all my expenses, I watched Cassie burst into the shop with far too much energy for this early in the morning. Waving my fingers above my cup, I chanted a warming spell to add some oomph to my morning pick-me-up. 


Dust swirled in the air behind Cassie’s hurried movements. Her dark hair was pulled back in a hasty ponytail, strands escaping to frame her face. “You didn’t call me on the way into work this morning. What’s wrong?” 

I watched in awe as Cassie pinned me with an intense stare, all while pulling the dusting cloth from under the register and wiping down the ancient bottles that lined the shelves. Cobwebs stuck to her cloth, but she kept moving. Cassie was a hurricane, an unstoppable force, especially when she fretted over things, which was often. 

“Cassie, what are you doing?” I asked, taking another sip of my morning tea. 

“Inventory,” she answered without pausing, her tone clipped. Another bottle, another swipe of the cloth. Her movements were mechanical, almost robotic. “If you’re mad at me, just tell me, Kate.” 

I stepped around the corner and placed my hand on her shoulder. “Cassie, I'm not mad at you. I’m also not giving you the silent treatment,” I smirked, trying to hide my grin. “I’m conflicted.”  

“Conflicted about what? I know when you are off, and it’s obvious.” Her blue eyes scanned the room like she was looking for a clue.  

"Cass," I finally said, trying to force a smile. "Business has been slow, as you know. The reason I didn't call this morning is because I was occupied with the bank. I currently owe them two months' rent." 

Cassie raised an eyebrow as she leaned against the counter, her posture relaxing but her gaze sharp. “It’s the weather. Spring in this area is drab at best. Who would want to shop?” Cassie continued to ramble on. “Summer is our busy season. We should prepare for that.”  

I smiled, appreciating Cassie’s interpretation of the situation. But even her attempt at explaining away the lack of business fell flat as she resumed dusting and organizing, moving a jar of eye of newt a fraction to the left. 

She wasn’t wrong. This lazy, coastal New England beach town was always busier in the summer and fall. Before long, tourists would come strolling in, talking animatedly about the lighthouse and the delicious lobster rolls they had for lunch. In the meantime, I needed to be patient and find a way to make some money. 

Step into the supernatural world crafted by Rose Kent, me, the daring alter ego of a passionate science teacher, devoted mom, and proud pet owner. Within my paranormal, fantasy romance stories you will find a fiery mix of lust, love, and magic. I work hard to weave vivid tales of forbidden love, uncomfortable angst, pulse-pounding action, and otherworldly creatures that will keep you hooked from the very first page. Come join me on a wild ride through the realm of the supernatural, where passion and the unknown collide to create a truly magical reading experience.

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Friday, June 07, 2024


By Caroline Clemmons

Frequently, my books include children as supporting characters. In my books, of course, the homeless children find great homes with loving couples. The 19th century had many children living on the streets. (Unfortunately, there still are.) Readers of Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist or of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables (much better and more in depth than the play or the movie) are provided a glimpse into the grim life of orphans or abandoned children. Who could forget Victor Hugo’s young boy living in a culvert?

But I write happily-ever-after books that offer a vacation for the minds of those experiencing exhaustion from the hectic lives we live today. Or, who simply like a fun story to read quickly. I hope I offer food for thought even though the books are not lengthy tomes.
In my opinion, the way a character reacts to a child reveals a great deal about the person. Yes, the characters are people in my mind, friends I get to know well or villains who are dealt with severely.

Seeing a rough, strong bounty hunter like STUART McGee rescue a baby still in diapers lets readers know he has a kind heart, protects those in need, and accepts responsibility. Readers learn a lot watching a would-be con-man Nate Bartholomew with three young orphans, one of whom is ill and another is mute, in award winning THE MOST UNSUITABLE HUSBAND. Sometimes it’s humorous, other times frightening.

Henry Cameron

Several books in my current historical western romance series, Texas Hill Country Mail Order Brides, include children. In Book One, rancher GENTRY McRae and Heidi don’t hesitate to help three frightened children. Book Two has Sheriff JESSE Cameron and Rosalin adopting two boys, one at a time. In Book Five, KEITH Martin, and Elliana take in three unusual siblings, thanks to Elliana’s quick action.

Why are they unusal? Most of the children in my books are attractive. Not so at first glance in Keith and Elliana’s story. The three children’s red hair has been chopped in tufts that stick out in all directions. Their faces are so freckled there is hardly any white skin showing. But they are not doomed.

I have a beautiful, strawberry blonde cousin who is kind and loving. She is twelve years older than me, and I have always admired her character and her lovely complexion. Imagine my surprise when I saw a picture of her from junior high. Her face was covered in freckles. I don’t mean the cute, tiny freckles sprinkled across her nose. Nope, these were huge ones melded together. Now, please don’t think I am judgemental and shallow. She was pretty with freckles, but she was self-conscious. Apparently some people make fun of those who have them, especially girls.

My cousin grew up on a West Texas cotton farm where she helped “chop cotton,” as we called hoeing weeds in the fields, and “pull bolls,” which is harvesting the cotton in back-breaking work. Fortunately for farmers, that is now done mostly by harvesting machines. Obviously, she was in the sun a lot. I wish I had that picture of her in junior high to show you how lovely she appeared even with large freckles.

What happened to her freckles? My uncle kept adding acreage to his farm and it was too large for the family to handle. My uncle’s fortunes increased, and he was able to hire people to harvest his cotton. At the same time, their improved financial situation allowed my aunt to purchase creams that lightened spots on skin. I suppose not spending long days working in the sun helped fade the freckles, too.

When Elliana and Keith brought home the children, Elliana immediately acquired creams to fade their freckles and she protected them from too much sun. Elliana also shaped the girls’ scarecrow hair while Keith took the boy to the barber. As you can imagine, going from living with a terrible stepfather to being in a safe, loving home made a huge difference in their sense of well being. To me, the immediacy and ease with which Elliana and Keith welcomed three children into their home demonstrated their compassion and kindness.

I hope you’ll read and enjoy y books. I love to write for you.

Thanks for stopping by. Stay safe and keep reading.

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Wednesday, June 05, 2024

When Plans Go Awry by Denise M Colby



Sometimes you have to lose everything to find what you truly need

When Plans Go Awry

Best-laid Plans Book 1

by Denise M. Colby

Genre: Historical Christian Romance

Olivia Carmichael escapes her past to become the next schoolmarm in the small ranching community of Washton, California. Her plan? Live a quiet spinster life alone, never to depend on anyone again.

Luke Taylor selected a mail-order bride to help raise his two younger sisters and protect his broken heart. His plans don’t include being responsible for the beautiful new schoolmarm, who threatens his resolve between his need to stay away and his need to ensure her safety.

Along the way, Olivia’s carefully laid-out plans are challenged at every turn, and Luke’s mail-order bride is not what he expected.

With the help of the entire town and its wily rooster, can Luke and Olivia learn to trust again?

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Cutting through the station, he dodged folks coming and going on that newly arrived passenger train while remnants of smoke puffed out the smokestack. A group of ladies descended and moved straight across the platform, chattering and oblivious to those around them.  

A young boy darted in his path. Luke jerked to the left. “Whoa!” 

“Sorry, sir,” the boy called as he ran away. 

Luke acknowledged the apology and then observed his surroundings. 

A young lady stood at the exit of the passenger car. Loose strands of blonde hair blew around her face, but she didn’t swipe them away. Instead, her eyes darted back and forth before she set her things at the top of the steps. 

Why did she pause? Did she need help? A strange protectiveness surged inside him. 

She closed her eyes, tilted her head back, and a small smile spread across her lips. 

An unbidden awareness engulfed him as everything around him faded into the background except her. Would Evelyn glow like this woman? He swallowed, smothering the spark that struck his heart. He wanted none of this awareness floating through his veins. What he wanted was a wife to manage his home and help raise his sisters, not a pretty lady who would drive him to distraction. 

He forced himself to move but couldn’t help watching her out of the corner of his eye. Sweat broke out on his forehead. If Evelyn looked anything like this woman, he’d indeed be distracted. 

Passionate about all types of stories—whether they are from songs, theatre, movies, or novels—Denise M. Colby loves history and constantly finds herself contemplating how it was to live in the 1800’s. Combining her love of learning about history, and reading, Denise writes Christian historical romance novels. Her first novel, When Plans Go Awry, is the first novel in her Best-laid Plans series.

Born and raised in Northern California, Denise moved to Southern California for college and to dance in the parades at Disneyland, where she met her husband thirty years ago. A mother to three boys and soon to be daughter-in-love, Denise loves to read, watch movies with her family, sing 80’s and musical songs, tap dance, and spend date nights with her husband at ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’. She treasures the written word and the messages that can be conveyed when certain words are strung together. An avid journal writer, Denise usually can be found with a pen and notepad whenever she’s reading God’s word.

Every year Denise chooses a word to focus on. She shares her learnings about that word throughout the year on the two blogs she writes for. Sign up for her newsletter or you can follow Denise on her social media or visit those blogs by clicking on the links below.

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