Author Archives: historythrutheages

Author Spotlight with Susan G. Mathis

Today I’m happy to welcome author Susan G. Mathis for an author spotlight.

When did you first discover you were a writer?

I can’t remember not writing. I’ve taught Language Arts for nine years to 4-8 graders, had my own newspaper column, wrote missions curriculum, and have written just about anything God put in my path.

Before I jumped into the fiction world, I served as the Founding Editor of Thriving Family magazine and the former Editor/Editorial Director of 12 Focus on the Family publications. My first two published books were nonfiction, co-authored with my husband, Dale. I also authored two picture books and am published in various book compilations including three Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Ready to Wed, Supporting Families Through Meaningful Ministry, The Christian Leadership Experience, and Spiritual Mentoring of Teens.

I swore I’d never write fiction, but never say never! My hubby and I went to a book talk/signing, and after we left, I jokingly said, “I could write a story about a quilt!” I then proceeded to tell him the entire story, and he said, “Well, write it!” Thus began my journey of writing historical fiction.

What are your novels about?

I have five published historical fiction novels on the market. All are set in the enchanting Thousand Islands in Upstate New York during the Gilded Age era.

My debut novel, The Fabric of Hope: An Irish Family Legacy is the story of a 1850s Irish immigrant and a 21st-century single mom who are connected by faith, family, and a quilt.

Christmas Charity is the story of Susan Hawkins and Patrick O’Neill who find that an arranged marriage is much harder than they think, especially when they immigrate from Wolfe Island, Canada, to Cape Vincent, New York, in 1864, just a week after they marry—with Patrick’s nine-year-old daughter, Lizzy, in tow.

Katelyn’s Choice is book one of The Thousand Islands Gilded Age with Lighthouse Publishing. It’s the story of nineteen-year-old Katelyn Kavanagh who leaves her family’s struggling farm to work on Pullman Island for the famous George Pullman. There she finds herself serving powerful men such as President Ulysses S. Grant, and General Sheridan—and falling in love with her best friend’s brother, Thomas, the handsome boatsman. Katelyn gains popularity with her friends by spilling the sensitive high society gossip she’s privy to. But when she overhears possibly damaging presidential conversations, she knows she can’t tell anyone. She could lose her job—and endanger her president’s 1872 reelection—and jeopardize her relationship with the man of her dreams.

Sara’s Surprise is the story of Sara McNully and Sean Graham who must navigate the challenging waters of work and romance. Sara befriends Sean’s 6-year-old daughter, Madison, but when Sara’s trust is shattered, can Sara learn to trust Sean with her heart or will she break two hearts and run away?

What’s your newest novel?

Devyn’s Dilemma, book two of The Thousand Islands Gilded Age series, just came out April 3, 2020. Here’s the back-cover copy: 1910, Thousand Islands, New York. Others may consider The Towers castle on Dark Island an enchanting summer retreat, but to Devyn McKenna, it’s a prison. Yet as she works as a maid for Frederick Bourne, former president of the Singer Sewing Machine Company, her life blossoms under the kindness of his family and fascinating entrepreneurs such as J.P. Morgan, Thomas Lipton, and Captain Vanderbilt. But more than anything, the growing friendship of Mr. Bourne’s valet, Brice McBride, begins to pry away the painful layers that conceal Devyn’s heart.

Brice is drawn to the mysterious Devyn even though he’s certain she’s hiding a secret, one far more dangerous than the clues they find in The Towers that hint of a treasure on the island. When Devyn is accused of stealing Bourne’s investment in Vanderbilt’s New York City subway expansion, he might not be able to protect her.

I hope you’ll take a peek at these five Gilded Age stories and immerse yourself in Downton-Abby like history, intrigue, wonder, redemption…and love.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Susan G Mathis is an award-winning, multi-published author of stories set in the beautiful Thousand Islands, her childhood stomping ground in upstate NY. Her first two books of The Thousand Islands Gilded Age series, Devyn’s Dilemma and Katelyn’s Choice are available now, and she’s working on book three. The Fabric of Hope: An Irish Family Legacy, Christmas Charity, and Sara’s Surprise are also available. Visit www.SusanGMathis.com for more.

Susan is also a published author of two premarital books with her husband, Dale, two children’s picture books, stories in a dozen compilations, and hundreds of published articles. Susan makes her home in Colorado Springs, enjoys traveling globally with her wonderful husband, Dale, and relishes each time she gets to see or Skype with her four granddaughters.

Lighthouse Publishing: https://shoplpc.com/devyns-dilemma
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Devyns-Dilemma-Thousand-Islands-Gilded/dp/1645262731
Website: www.SusanGMathis.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SusanGMathis
Twitter: https://twitter.com/@SusanGMathis
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/susangmathis
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/susangmathisaut
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6044608.Susan_G_Mathis

 

April 2020 New Releases!

April 2020 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Biblical:

Claiming Canaan: Milcah’s Journey by Barbara M. Britton — When the tribal elders make marriage a requirement for claiming her land, Milcah bat Zelophehad must find a betrothed straightaway. The only problem in finding a husband is that all her suitors were slain while conquering the land of Canaan. Men avoid her in order to stay alive. After praying to God to send her a bold suitor, a man from her father’s clan plummets from a tree right on top of her. Is this God answering prayer, or a foolish antic by Eli, the war-scarred brother from one of her clan’s rival families. Will settling in Canaan sort out Milcah’s troubles, or have her woes just begun? (Biblical Fiction from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])

Contemporary Romance:

Ryan’s Father by June Foster — The rippling influence of Ryan Reid’s less than moral mother and absent father made a mark on his soul. Yet everything changed when the young school teacher accepted Christ—almost everything. An earthquake hurls the beautiful Sandy Arrington into his life, tossing his world upside down. When God calls him to build an annex for needy teens at his church, Ryan must face the carefully guarded secret he’s held deep in his heart. Though Sandy falls in love with him, Ryan’s forbidden affections lie elsewhere, and he must depend on the Lord to see him through a struggle he always hoped he’d never have to face. Sandy’s wealthy cardiologist father and the battle Ryan is powerless to win are hurtles to their romance. Can he dig his way out to find Sandy’s love? (Contemporary Romance from Winged Publications)

Historical Romance:

The House at the End of the Moor by Michelle Griep — What Can a London Opera Star and an Escaped Dartmoor Prisoner Have in Common? Opera star Maggie Lee escapes her opulent lifestyle when threatened by a powerful politician who aims to ruin her life. She runs off to the wilds of the moors to live in anonymity. All that changes the day she discovers a half-dead man near her house. Escaped convict Oliver Ward is on the run to prove his innocence, until he gets hurt and is taken in by Maggie. He discovers some jewels in her possession—the very same jewels that got him convicted. Together they hatch a plan to return the jewels, clearing Oliver’s name and hopefully maintaining Maggie’s anonymity. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Spies & Sweethearts by Linda Shenton Matchett — A secret mission. A fake bride. A run for their lives. According to the OSS training manual, the life expectancy of a radio operator in Nazi-occupied France is six weeks. Partnered with one of the agency’s top spies, Gerard Lucas, newly-minted agent Emily Strealer plans to beat those odds. Then their cover is blown and all bets are off. The border to neutral Switzerland is three hundred miles away-a long way to run with SS soldiers on their heels.
Will Emily and Gerard survive the journey and get home? And what about their hearts? Nothing in the manual prepared them for falling in love. (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)

Devyn’s Dilemma by Susan G Mathis — 1910, Thousand Islands, New York. Others may consider The Towers castle on Dark Island an enchanting summer retreat, but to Devyn McKenna, it’s a prison. Yet as she works as a maid for Frederick Bourne, former president of the Singer Sewing Machine Company, her life blossoms under the kindness of his family and fascinating entrepreneurs such as J.P. Morgan, Thomas Lipton, and Captain Vanderbilt. But more than anything, the growing friendship of Mr. Bourne’s valet, Brice McBride, begins to pry away the painful layers that conceal Devyn’s heart. Brice is drawn to the mysterious Devyn even though he’s certain she’s hiding a secret, one far more dangerous than the clues they find in The Towers that hint of a treasure on the island. When Devyn is accused of stealing Bourne’s investment in Vanderbilt’s New York City subway expansion, he might not be able to protect her. (Historical Romance from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

A Life Renewed by Olivia Rae — In 1554, Lady Jane Grey, “The Nine Days’ Queen” was executed for high treason. But what if, instead of feeling the blade on her neck she secretly survived? Escaping execution, Lady Jane hides as a peasant girl in a principality in Germany. She loves the simple life and never wants to return to England. But her benefactor, a power-hungry German prince, wants to march on London and place her on the English throne again, thereby increasing his dominance in Europe. If she doesn’t agree to his plan, her beloved childhood nurse will be put to death. Desperate for help, Jane must put her trust in the mysterious spy Asher Hayes. Asher Hayes is done rounding up Protestants for “Bloody Mary” and wants nothing more than to live a quiet life as a farmer and expunge the blood of many from his hands. Except Queen Mary isn’t done with him yet. She throws his father, mother, and sister into prison on false charges in order to force him to accept one last mission – find and kill Lady Jane Grey. But when Asher discovers Lady Jane isn’t a threat to the throne as he believed her to be, he faces a devastating decision – does he sacrifice his family for the woman who reigns in his heart? (Historical Romance from HopeKnight Press LLC)

The Chisholm Trail Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo — Stubborn Hearts Clash on a Cattle Drive Eliza Gentry’s pursuit of marriage to the son of her family’s sworn enemy has cost her greatly. Furious at his daughter’s choices, her father sends her off with the cattle drive heading toward Fort Worth and the Barnhart ranch, but under the watchful eye of Wyatt Creed, a Pinkerton man he has hired to see to her safety. With danger at every turn—not the least of which to his heart—can Wyatt Creed keep his focus with Eliza Gentry around? Is the Chisholm Trail a place for falling in love or a place to die at the hands of cattle thieves? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Mystery:

Cooking Up A Mystery by Gail Pallotta — In this romantic mystery Laney Eskridge battles insecurities, loss and a criminal who attempts to destroy her tea house and catering business. (Cozy Mystery from Inspired [Prism Book Group])

Romantic Suspense:

Flight Risk by Cara Putman — Savannah Daniels has worked hard to establish a small law practice, and her early career gambles have paid off with a life that she loves. Jett Mason Glover has almost reached the pinnacle of the journalism ladder in Washington, DC. He just needs one breakout story to seal his destiny. When a plane crashes into the 14th Street Bridge during take-off from Reagan National, everyone thinks it’s a freak accident—until the passenger list is released and the black box is compromised. Savannah does not expect to be connected to the crash until she learns her ex-husband was piloting the plane. She must manage his estate while his name is under a fog of accusations leveled by a journalist named Jett who now claims he wants to help Savannah find the truth. As the threads untangle, Savannah begins to question what she knows and whether she’ll survive the investigation. Maybe she’s as deceived as everyone else, but someone believes she’s closer to the truth than she is. And that belief may just kill her. (Romantic Suspense from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

Border Breach by Darlene L. Turner — When drugs are smuggled across the border, it’s their duty to stop the culprits…at any cost. Forming a joint task force, Canada border officer Kaylin Poirier and police constable Hudson Steeves have one objective: take down a drug-smuggling ring trying to sell a new lethal product. But when the smugglers come after Kaylin and Hudson, this mission becomes more than just a job. Can they live long enough to solve the case? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Plus check out these recent additions to Fiction Finder published within the past month:
Only a Glimpse by LuAnn K. Edwards, Contemporary Romance
Fugitive Trail by Elizabeth Goddard , Romantic Suspense
Critical Decision by Richard L. Mabry, MD, Medical Mystery
Glacier of Secrets by J Carol Nemeth, Romantic Suspense
A Perfect Fit by Christine Schimpf, Contemporary Romance
Riven by H.L. Wegley, Romantic Suspense (Historical)

Forever, Lately by Linore Rose Burkard

Today I’m happy to welcome author Linore Rose Burkard as she shares about her new story, Forever, Lately.

I wanted to write a Regency time travel for years. When I saw the movie “Kate and Leopold” with Meg Ryan and Hugh Jackman I thought, Oh no! Someone used my idea! But I needn’t have worried. Leopold was a Victorian gentleman, not from the Regency, first of all, and secondly, though I enjoyed the flick, I kept thinking it missed so many opportunities for humor. (Having written a screenplay since then, I realize now why it missed so many; tight scripts just don’t have room for all the scenes that could be fun.) When I wrote my story, however, not only was it fundamentally different and unique, but I was able to include the humorous scenes that had been floating in my head for eons. This makes the book a lot of fun–particularly when the Regency hero shows up in the present day. On a side note, I started the book years ago and then dropped it, mostly because I wanted to write it as a Christian romance like my other Regencies. But I kept running into roadblocks. And Christian publishers weren’t interested in time travel. Finally I realized I had to let God out of MY box and write the story He was giving me, not the one I thought He should give me. After that, it came together remarkably easily, and I think in a very fun way. Due to reader interest in a sequel, I’m now brainstorming that book.

BOOK BLURB:
“A writer of historical fiction travels back in time—and into the world of her characters. An enjoyable and dramatic era-spanning love story.”
Kirkus

1816, England
Julian St. John needs a wife. An oath to a deceased guardian must be kept. Miss Clarissa Andrews, a vexatious beauty, has dangled after him all season but he has no intention of choosing such a she-devil.

Maine, Present Day
Author Claire Channing is desperate to write a bestseller to save her failing career.  She thinks she’s writing St. Johnʼs story. But when she discovers an old prayer shawl and finds herself in his Regency world, she falls in love with him, a man she thought she invented! But Miss Andrews is also real—and she’d rather see Julian dead than in another womanʼs arms!
Claire must beat the clock to prevent a deadly tragedy, but can love beat the limits of time itself?

BOOK GENRE: Historical Romance/Time Travel (Sweet and Clean)

SHORT EXCERPT:
“Allow me to congratulate you, Julian, on the excellent handling of your horse,” Clarissa purred. “I am infinitely relieved you have kept yourself in one piece, you must know. I should have been utterly cast down had you been harmed.”

He wished he could tell her to go to the devil, to plague him with her incessant fooleries, but he was too much a gentleman—by God, he would be a gentleman. So he said only, “You could have got someone killed.”

“Yes, you,” she agreed calmly, ignoring the steely blue glint of his eyes. “But here you are, as handsome and alive as ever.” She gave him a sweet smile, reminding him of what he found so vexatious in her. She had an innocent smile, delectable lips, but behind it all a black heart.

“Oh, come, Julian, you give me too much credit. No one was anything near being killed. You know it was naught but a lark, only a lark!”

“Only a lark?” His voice dripped ice. “Your coach came directly at me, and if I had been any less a rider, I’d have broken my neck. My horse might have died as well.”

She was thoughtful a moment. “We were not supposed to drive quite so close to you, I own. And why do you insist upon riding such an immense animal? We should have fared the worst, not you; only it did not work out the way I planned.” She spoke with barely a moment’s stopping. “And I warrant you would have come to rescue me in a moment if Margaret had not spoilt everything.” She pouted at him from within the reaches of a richly beribboned bonnet. “I was perfectly prepared to swoon for your benefit. You would have come to my aid, would you not?” She looked at him hopefully, but he made no answer. He directed his next words to the opposite wall of the coach.

“Are you all right, Miss Margaret?” He couldn’t see Miss Andrews’s younger sister, but a sniffle came from the darkness.

“I—I think so. Thank you, sir.”

“Margaret’s perfectly well!” Miss Andrews cried, moving forward so her ample bosom, half revealed in the formal dress of evening wear, was not only plainly in sight, but she blocked any possible view behind her. St. John looked away, refusing to admire her.

Other men did admire her, for she could have made any wall in the kingdom proud with her portrait. She had dark, lustrous hair, an ovaline face with a well-delineated nose, and dark, long-lashed eyes. She also had slim ankles and small feet, which he knew from attending many a ball or rout in town. But St. John could not admire Miss Andrews’s face or slim ankles, for her brazen impudence gave him a disgust of her.

In the past he would have taken advantage of her, welcomed her when she teased him with her alluring countenance and everything beneath it. At times he wanted nothing more than to take hold of her and…He forced his mind to concentrate only on her irksome behaviour. Tonight’s escapade, what she called a ‘mere lark,’ was the latest in a string of vexatious attempts by her to gain his attention. And it was merely a hoax, another of her tricks, to put him in her path.

©2020 Linore Rose Burkard

PURCHASE LINKS:

Ebook

Print

B&N purchase

 

About Linore:

Linore Rose Burkard is a serious watcher of period films, a Janeite, and hopeless romantic. An award winning author best known for Inspirational Regency Romance, Forever, Lately is her first Regency time travel novel. Linore has a magna cum laude English Lit. degree from CUNY which she earned while taking herself far too seriously. She now resides in Ohio with her husband and family, where she turns her youthful angst into character or humor-driven plots.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS

Facebook: Linore’s Reader’s Club

Facebook Main Profile

Website

 

 

March 2020 New Releases!

March 2020 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Contemporary Romance:

Love & Liberty by Elsie Davis — A New Hampshire firefighter and an Audubon Society member go head to head when his work involving controlled forest fires threatens a rumored eagle nest. (Contemporary Romance from Sweet Promise Press)

Formula for a Perfect Life by Christy Hayes — College senior Kayla Cummings’ dreams are crushed by an unplanned pregnancy after a one-night stand with her secret crush. When she confronts the baby’s father, Ben Strickland, his destined life spins out of control. With the clock ticking and decisions to make, Ben and Kayla embark on a journey where falling in love might be the biggest surprise of all. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published )

Hill Country Redemption by Shannon Taylor Vannatter — When Rance Shepherd takes a job stocking cattle for a local rodeo, he’s shocked that his new client is his ex-sweetheart, Larae Collins. Now he’s determined to prove to the single mother that he isn’t the restless cowboy she remembers. But when he discovers her little girl is his, they both must forgive past mistakes for a second shot at a future together. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Spring Splash by Denise Weimer — An injured college swimmer volunteers to help with a Special Olympics swim team as a part of her sports marketing practicum and butts heads with the team’s handsome but stubborn coach. (Contemporary Romance from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

Children’s:

Selah’s Stolen Dream by Susan Count — Thirteen-year-old Selah’s perfect life unravels when her beloved horse is stolen. Then ten-year-old Emma buys the dream of a lifetime at a horse auction. When she learns the horse was stolen, even removing her hearing aid won’t drown out the voice telling her to make it right.But two girls can’t divide the horse they both adore. So will life surprise them with an answered prayer? (Middle Grade from Hastings Creations Group)

Historical:

Sorrento Girl by Dawn Klinge — It’s 1938, and Ann Brooks has big dreams of her new life as a Seattle College coed. She’s left the old-fashioned ways of her small country town behind to pursue higher education and a teaching career. But not everyone is ready for change. Society still preaches that a woman’s place is in the home. Some refuse to see Ann as an equal deserving of an education — let alone a career — and Ann’s friends think school is simply a springboard to pursue a marriage of wealth and convenience. When Ann meets Paul, an aspiring journalist with strong ideas of his own, she learns an unexpected lesson in courage and discovers what it really means to live her dreams. Will Ann give up everything she thought she wanted for love? Or can she have it all? (Historical, Independently Published)

The Blue Cloak by Shannon McNear — Based on real events beginning in 1797 — Rachel Taylor lives a rather mundane existence at the way station her family runs along the Wilderness Road in Tennessee. She attends her friend’s wedding only to watch it dissolve in horror has the groom, Wiley Harpe, and his cousin become murderers on the run, who drag their families along. Declaring a “war on all humanity,” the Harpes won’t be stopped, and Ben Langford is on their trail to see if his own cousin was one of their latest victims. How many will die before peace can return to the frontier? (Historical from Barbour Publishing)

Roll Back the Clouds by Terri Wangard — Sailing on the Lusitania is a dream-come-true for Rosaleen and Geoff Bonnard, but their journey turns into a nightmare. Will they ever find their joy again? (Historical, Independently Published)

Historical Romance:

The Heart’s Stronghold by Amanda Barratt, Angie Dicken, Gabrielle Meyer, and Kimberley Woodhouse — Join four brave women making their mark on history at Colonial forts. Faced with tragedy and distrust they will fight to bring civility, family, and love to the frontier. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Hope in the Mountain River by Misty M. Beller — This epic journey is not at all what she expected. Joel Vargas can’t believe he’s lost his older brother in the wilds of the Rocky Mountains after surviving their harrowing voyage across the Atlantic. And he can’t shake the feeling that Adam—his only living relative—is in dire trouble. No matter what the cost, he and his band of friends won’t stop until Adam is found. He’s not sure if two Indian women they meet on the way will be a help or hindrance. After the devastating loss of her daughter and husband to a sickness that swept through their Nez Perce camp, Elan is desperate to find an escape from her grief. As she and her friend journey through the mountains toward the great river, a band of white men is the last thing she expects to find, especially as winter blows in full force. When the dangers increase, accomplishing Joel’s mission becomes the only hope for all their survival. If the elements don’t consume them, Elan has a feeling life will never be the same for any of them. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)

Out of the Embers by Amanda Cabot — Ten years after her parents were killed, Evelyn Radcliffe is once more homeless. The orphanage that was her refuge and later her workplace has burned to the ground, and only she and a young orphan girl have escaped. Convinced this must be related to her parents’ murders, Evelyn flees with the girl to Mesquite Springs in the Texas Hill Country and finds refuge in the home of Wyatt Clark, a talented horse rancher whose plans don’t include a family of his own. At first, Evelyn is a distraction. But when it becomes clear that trouble has followed her to Mesquite Springs, she becomes a full-blown disruption. Can Wyatt keep her safe from the man who wants her dead? And will his own plans become collateral damage? (Historical Romance from Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group)

Woman of Sunlight by Mary Connealy — From a remote Colorado mountain to the bustle of Chicago. Ilsa finds herself married and dragged into rushing wagons and horses, high rise buildings and a ruthless killer who’s followed them across a country. (Western from Bethany House [Baker])

The Merchant’s Yield by Lorri Dudley — A debutant finds herself in a compromising situation with a Leeward Islander, which lands her in a marriage of inconvenience with the man who then carries her across the Atlantic to his home. When he learns of her weak constitution and believes she can’t survive the hardships of island life, she sets out to prove him wrong. (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)

A Love Not Forgotten by Linda Shenton Matchett — Allison White should be thrilled about her upcoming wedding. The problem? She’s still in love with her fiancé, Chaz, who was declared dead after being shot down over Germany in 1944. Can she put the past behind her and settle down to married life with the kindhearted man who loves her? It’s been two years since Charles “Chaz” Powell was shot down over enemy territory. The war is officially over, but not for him. He has amnesia as a result of injuries sustained in the crash, and the only clue to his identity is a love letter with no return address. Will he ever regain his memories and discover who he is, or will he have to forge a new life with no connections to the past? (Historical Romance by Shortwave Press)

Romantic Suspense:

Killer Harvest by Tanya Stowe — Can she stop a deadly crop virus from ending up in the wrong hands? Biologist and single mom Sassa Nilsson just witnessed her mentor’s brutal murder by environmental extremists. Now she’s the last link to a deadly pathogen they plan on unleashing—and their number one target! But can handsome border patrol agent Jared De Luca shield Sassa and her baby long enough to find a cure…before the entire world faces the unthinkable consequences? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Traces by Denise Weimer — When a failed romance and a $500,000 prize lure Kate Carson into participating in the reality TV show, Traces, the least she expects is to pick her partner. After all, she’s the PR spokeswoman of the company that derived a thirteen-lens, rotating camera from military use and installed it atop Atlanta’s tallest skyscraper. But she never would have chosen to evade techno hunters for twenty days with “G.I. Joe.” Stoic, ex-military Alex Mitchell is the sort of man she always vowed to avoid, while the shadows of Alex’s past cause him to spurn emotional involvement. When Kate’s insider knowledge makes her a target of someone more threatening than game show hunters, Alex offers her only hope to reveal the dark plans of proponents of The Eye. (Romantic Suspense from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

Song in the Dark by Jessica White — After graduating from Juilliard, harpist Jenna Fields returns home to Albany to escape her manipulative ex and prove to her controlling mother that she can orchestrate her own life. Homicide detective Dean Blackburn spends his days seeking justice for the dead. But darkness taints everything, including him. When his three Dobermans lead him to Jenna playing in the park, he tries to resist the beautiful musician and focus on his cases. At least until he witnesses Jenna’s ex attempt to blackmail her and learns she’s being stalked, just like one of his homicide victims. When her world crumbles beneath her feet, and Dean learns she has her own dark secrets, he helps Jenna see that the key to escaping her mother’s gilded cage is already in her hands. (Romantic Suspense from Mantle Rock Publishing)

Secrets She Knew by D.L. Wood — Boston police detective Dani Lake dreads returning to her small hometown of Skye, Alabama, for her ten-year high school reunion–and not just for the normal reasons. At only fifteen, Dani tragically discovered the body of her murdered classmate, setting in motion the process that led to the unjust conviction of her dear friend and an unshakable burden of guilt she carries to this day. So when new evidence surfaces during her trip home which suggests the truth Dani’s always suspected, she embarks on a mission to expose the real killer, aided by Skye detective Chris Newton–who happens to be the man Dani’s best friend is dying to set her up with, and also the only person who believes her. But when Dani pushes too hard, someone pushes back, endangering Dani and those closest to her as she unearths secrets deeper and darker than she ever expected to learn—secrets that may bring the truth to light, if they don’t get her killed first. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Suspense:

Chasing the White Lion by James R. Hannibal — Rookie spy Talia Inger goes deep undercover in the world’s first crowdsourced crime syndicate to unveil a monster and rescue kidnapped refugee children. (Techno-thriller from Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group)

Kings Falling by Ronie Kendig — Leif Metcalfe and his team, dubbed Reaper, need to recover the stolen, ancient Book of the Wars if they hope to stop the Armageddon Coalition and their pursuit of global economic control. But their attention has been diverted by a prophecy in the book that foretells of formidable guardians who will decimate the enemies of ArC. While Iskra Todorova uses her connections in the covert underworld to hunt down the Book of the Wars, Leif and Reaper attempt to neutralize these agents but quickly find themselves outmaneuvered and outgunned. The more Reaper tries to stop the guardians, the more failure becomes a familiar, antagonistic foe. Friendships are fractured, and the team battles to hold it together long enough to defeat ArC. But as this millennia-old conspiracy creeps closer and closer to home, the implications could tear Leif and the team apart. (Military Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])

Plus check out these recent additions to Fiction Finder published within the past month:

Love & Hope by Elsie Davis, Contemporary Romance
Bite the Dust by Jackie Layton, Cozy Mystery
Jordan’s Arrow by Allen Steadham, Speculative
The Letters by C. Kevin Thompson, Suspense

February 2020 New Releases!

February 2020 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Contemporary Romance:

Hands of Grace by Brenda S. Anderson — She’s always looked for love in the wrong places. He wants nothing to do with love. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Desert Willow by Patricia Beal — A stubborn ballerina and a charming young officer are brought together by an old woman’s dying wish and last love letter. (Contemporary Romance from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

A Gift to Cherish by Victoria Bylin — Rafe Donovan, a cop from Cincinnati, is haunted by a recurring nightmare about the drug death of his high school sweetheart. Those nightmares force him to take leave from his job, seek help, and shelter in Refuge, where he pounds nails for his brother’s construction business. Rafe has no desire to stay in Wyoming. His goal is to get back to being a cop in Ohio as soon as possible. But then he meets Daisy Riley . . . When he finds her stranded late at night with a flat tire, he’s impressed by her courage. Daisy is equally impressed by him, but as a former victim of violence, she treasures her safe and secure life in Refuge. Together they navigate the road to love—one that’s complicated by the arrival of Daisy’s troubled best friend, online dating, and the impossible obstacle of 1,600 miles between her home and his. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Her Rocky Mountain Hope by Mindy Obenhaus — Learning to trust can be the greatest adventure. She’s always played it safe…Can he reach her guarded heart? Ready to open his camp for young cancer patients, Daniel Stephens must impress foundation overseer Blythe McDonald to ensure she approves funding for next year. But the cautious former cancer patient was once let down by a similar program, and she’ll leave no stone unturned in her evaluation. Can he convince her his camp is worthy of the money…and that he’s worthy of her love? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

The Story of Us by Teri Wilson — When a bookstore owner and an architect go head to head over a new development that threatens her store, they find a box of love letters from the past that may hold the key to their future. (Contemporary Romance from Hallmark Publishing)

General Split Time:

The Tea Chest by Heidi ChiavaroliBoston, 1773… Emma Malcolm’s father is staunchly loyal to the crown, but Emma’s heart belongs to Noah Winslow, a lowly printer’s assistant and Patriot. Her father has promised her hand to Samuel Clarke, a rapacious and sadistic man. As his fiancée, she would have to give up Noah and the friends who have become like family to her?as well as the beliefs she has come to embrace. After Emma is drawn into the treasonous Boston Tea Party, Samuel blackmails her with evidence that condemns each participant, including Noah. Emma realizes she must do whatever it takes to protect those she loves, even if it means giving up the life she desires and becoming Samuel’s wife. Present Day… Lieutenant Hayley Ashworth is determined to be the first woman inducted into the elite Navy SEALs. But before her dream can be realized, she must return to Boston in order to put the abuse and neglect of her childhood behind her. When an unexpected encounter with the man she once loved leads to the discovery of a tea chest and the document hidden within, she wonders if perhaps true strength and freedom are buried deeper than she first realized. Two women, separated by centuries, must find the strength to fight for love and freedom. . . and discover a heritage of courage and faith. (General Contemporary from Tyndale House)

Historical:

Heavenly Lights by Barbara M. Britton — God gave Noah bat Zelophehad four sisters, a way with four-legged creatures, and a strong spirit. She will need all three gifts to thrive in the Promised Land of God and find love with a special shepherd. (Historical from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])

Historical Romance:

Waltz in the Wilderness by Kathleen Denly — Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse. Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement. When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt? (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)

The Brightest of Dreams by Susan Anne Mason — Quinten Aspinall is determined to fulfill the promise he made to his dying father and keep his family together. To do so, he travels to Canada to find his younger siblings, who were sent there as indentured workers when Quinn was away at war. While overseas, he agrees to look for his employer’s niece who ran off with a Canadian soldier. If Quinn can bring Julia back, he will receive his own tenant farm, allowing him to give his ailing mother and his siblings a true home at last. Julia Holloway’s decision to come to Toronto has met with nothing but disaster. When her uncle’s employee rescues her from a bad situation, she fears she can never repay Quinn’s kindness. So when he asks for her help to find his sister, she agrees. The quest draws the two of them together, but soon afterward, Julia receives devastating news that will change her life forever. Torn between reuniting his family and protecting Julia, will Quinn have to sacrifice his own happiness to finally keep his promise? (Historical Romance from Bethany House [Baker])

Three Little Things by Patti Stockdale — Hattie Waltz should forget the troubled neighbor leaving for boot camp in 1917. He forgot about her ages ago. It had always been the Waltzs verses the Kregers, his family pitted against hers. When she hands him a farewell gift, a chemistry lesson unfolds. The good kind. Arno Kreger can’t leave Iowa or his old man fast enough. He’s eager to prove his worth on the battlefield and stop blaming himself for his brother’s death. Before entering the train, he bumps into Hattie. He’s loved her forever, always from the sidelines, because nobody crosses Hattie’s pa. One innocent letter soon morphs into many. Arno and Hattie share three little secrets in each letter and grow closer together. But he’s on his way to war across the ocean, and she’s still in her father’s house. Their newfound love will need to survive dangers on both fronts. (Historical Romance from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

The Land Beneath Us by Sarah Sundin — With his future stolen by his brothers’ betrayal, Private Clay Paxton trains hard with the US Army Rangers, determined to do his best in the upcoming Allied invasion of France. Leah Jones works as a librarian at the army base, hoping to find her lost sisters. A marriage of convenience binds them together, but will D-day—and a foreboding dream—tear them apart? (Historical Romance from Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group)

Taming Julia by Jodie Wolfe — A gun-toting, breeches-wearing wife wasn’t what the minister ordered. In 1875, Kansas bachelor Drew Montgomery’s sole desire is to serve God, but his congregation’s ultimatum that he marry or leave, forces him to advertise for a wife by proxy. Jules Walker strides into Drew’s life wearing breeches and toting a gun and saddle–more cowboy than bride. After years on the trail, she’s not exactly wife material, but she longs for home and family, and will do anything to ensure Drew never discovers what she really is. (Historical Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

Mystery:

Under Cover by Linda Shenton Matchett — In the year since arriving in London, journalist Ruth Brown has put a face on the war for her readers at home in the U.S. Thus far, juggling her career and her relationship with Detective Inspector Trevor Gelson hasn’t proven too challenging. The war gets personal for Ruth when her friend Amelia is murdered, and Trevor is assigned to the case. Life gets even more unsettling when clues indicate her best friend, Varis, is passing secrets to the enemy. Convinced Varis is innocent, Ruth must find the real traitor as the clock ticks down toward Operation Husky-the Allied invasion of Sicily. Circumstantial evidence leads Trevor to suspect her of having a part in Amelia’s death, and Ruth must choose between her heart and her duty. (Historical Mystery from Shortwave Press)

Romantic Suspense:

Legacy Reclaimed by Robin Patchen — She’ll risk anything to save the company her parents built. When someone makes threats on her life, he’ll risk anything to save her. But that someone will stop at nothing to make sure they both fail. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Speculative:

Cry of the Raven by Morgan L. Busse — Lady Selene Ravenwood has come into her full power as a dreamwalker just as the war with the Dominia Empire begins. Working with the other Great Houses, Selene and Damien use their gifts to secure the borders and save those devastated by the war. But conflict, betrayal, and hatred begin to spread between the Great Houses, destroying their unity as the empire burns a path across their lands. At the same time, Damien Maris starts to lose his ability to raise the waters, leaving the lands vulnerable to the empire’s attacks. The only one who can unite the houses and restore her husband’s power is Selene Ravenwood. But it will require that she open her heart to those who have hurt her and let go of her past, despite the one who hunts her and will do anything to stop her power. Will Selene survive? Or is she destined to fall like the dreamwalkers before her? (Fantasy from Bethany House [Baker])

Young Adult:

Follow the Dawn by Rachelle Rea Cobb — Anna Emory grew up the invisible, shy younger sister, and she prefers it that way. But when her father attempts to arrange an unsavory marriage, Anna learns that courage is sometimes found in adversity. Then she meets a boy and his father struggling in their relationship, and they tip her quiet world upside down. Captain Mathieu Tudder has run from responsibility, entrusting his young son’s care to another and devoting his Sea Beggar ship to the Dutch Revolution. After that cause fails, Tudder returns to England for the son he left behind. But his son seems to have given his heart to a unknown and quiet lady—a woman who reminds him of all he’s ever loved and lost. Will these two hearts—the battle-scarred and the broken—ever find true freedom? (Young Adult Historical from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

The Vault Between Spaces by Chawna Schroeder — Every legend must start somewhere… No prisoner who enters the gates of HopeWell ever leaves. But from the moment Oriel sets foot inside Anatroshka’s most formidable prison camp, she unsettles both commandant and prisoner alike with eyes that see beyond the surface and music that trails her everywhere. Petite and delicate though she appears, Oriel bows before neither threat nor punishment. Moreover, she makes no attempt to hide her intention: Oriel plans to escape the inescapable HopeWell. But when facades are stripped away and myth becomes clothed in flesh, what begins as a prison break becomes a mission to stop the invasion of evil itself. (Young Adult Fantasy from Enclave Publishing)

Plus check out these recent additions to Fiction Finder published within the past month:

The Duke’s Refuge by Lorri Dudley, Historical Romance
Hannah’s Courage by Molly Jebber, Amish Romance
The Missing Manuscript by Sylvia A Nash, Cozy Mystery
Silvyn’s Tale by Sara Nicole, Fantasy
Freedom Lake Collection: Books 1 – 3 by Toni Shiloh, Contemporary Romance
Yellowstone Yondering by Kristen Joy Wilks, Contemporary Romance

Author Spotlight with Vickie McDonough ( + Giveaway )

Today I’m happy to welcome author Vickie McDonough for an author spotlight. Read through to the end to find out how you can enter to win the giveaway.

What genre(s) do you write in and why?

I think my passion for historical romance was birthed as I watched many of the old westerns of the 1960s and early ’70s with my dad. I loved horses and read every book I could find in the library with a horse on the cover. When I was ten, I talked my folks into buying me a horse. Sadly it was too young to ride and a bit wild, so we soon sold it. Later on, I got a good saddle horse and rode it all over town. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I think God was preparing me way back then to be a writer of historical fiction. Those years of caring for and riding horses have been invaluable as I write stories with horses in them.

I’ve always loved stories about cowboys, lawmen, and others living in the Old West. I guess writing historical fiction just comes natural to me. Writing Christian books is a way for me to share my faith and hopefully encourage and inspire others.

What is your favorite part of writing?

I have several things I like about writing. The main one is that I can work from home. This has allowed me to care for my granddaughter when she was young and then care for my mother after my father died. I also like that I’ve been able to travel some to conferences and interesting locations to do research for my stories. As far as the actual writing process, I like creating characters and seeing how they grow and take on a life as the story progresses. I love taking a rough character and seeing him/her get redeemed by the end of the book. We’re all sinners with issues, and I believe Christian fiction can help us see that we may fail at times, but we are never without hope. And then, being a romantic at heart, I love the happily-ever-after endings.

How has being published changed your life?

I’ve always been an introvert. When I was in my early twenties, something happened that sent me into a deep depression and almost destroyed my self-esteem. Becoming a writer and seeing my books published has slowly helped rebuild my confidence and given me a ministry that I never saw coming.

READERS, leave a comment below to enter the giveaway of one ebook copy of “Joline’s Redemption”, book 2 in her Land Rush Dreams series.

About the Book:

Gabriel’s Atonement, Land Rush Dreams book 1

All Gabriel Coulter ever wanted was to live a comfortable life as a successful gambler, but a confrontation with a disgruntled cowboy who’d just lost his monthly pay to Gabe leads to a family man dying in his arms. Even though it was self-defense, the only way Gabe knows to get rid of his guilt is to return the money he won to the man’s wife.

Lara Talbot sees Gabe as a derelict like her husband and wants nothing to do with him–not even the much-needed money he’s offered her. But as she struggles to provide for her family and makes plans to claim property in the upcoming Oklahoma land rush in hopes of finally having a permanent home, she wonders if God might have sent the meddling man to help.

Buy Link:

https://www.amazon.com/Gabriels-Atonement-Land-Rush-Dreams-ebook/dp/B07YL8PS4Y

On sale for $1.99 / Regular Price $4.99

About Vickie:

Vickie McDonough is the best-selling author of 50 Christian fiction books and novellas. She writes inspirational romance stories about ranchers, cowboys, lawmen, and others living in the Old West. Vickie’s books have won numerous awards, including the Book Sellers Best and the Inspirational Reader’s Award. Visit her website: www.vickiemcdonough.com and sign up for her newsletter.

Newsletter sign-up: https://madmimi.com/signups/80262/join

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/vickie-mcdonough

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VickieMcDonough

Twitter: https://twitter.com/vickiemcdonough

Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/vickiemcdonough

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/VickieMcDonough/

Heroes, Heroines, and History blog: http://HHHistory.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/101317.Vickie_McDonough

Instagram: instagram.com/vickieamcdonough

My Etsy Store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/vickiesvillage

 

Under Cover: Stories Behind the Story — Linda Matchett

Today I’m happy to welcome author Linda Matchett as she shares about her latest release and the story behind it.

Do you consider yourself brave? When I was a younger woman, I would have say yes. Now, not so much. Among other things, I’m claustrophobic and acrophobic, although I take exception with the definition of the latter (“irrational fear of heights”). One can get hurt or killed in a fall from a high place. Just saying.

But I digress.

Research for my historic novels has unearthed countless stories about ordinary people performing extraordinary deeds. A large percentage of those folks have gone unnoticed, and most don’t want any attention. Because of my background as a Human Resources professional, I’m fascinated with the history of women in the workplace, especially holding jobs previously only available to men. An area of particular intrigue for me is, well, intrigue. The world of cloak-and-dagger, codes, disguises, and fake identifications.

In the United States, more than 4,000 women worked for the Office of Strategic Services, precursor to the CIA created in June 1942. These ladies came from all walks of life: high society, Hollywood, middle class housewives, teachers, doctors, lawyers, and prison.

A high percentage of the women were secretaries and file clerks. Still others were math sharks or cartographers. A few were seamstresses tasked with creating clothing that would look “of the country” where the outfits would be worn. A tiny number of the gals went into occupied territory to perform reconnaissance, collect intelligence, and wreak havoc on communication and rail lines.

Virginia Hall is perhaps one of the most well-known spies. Called the Limping Lady by the Germans, Virginia wore a prosthetic leg as a result of an injury she sustained as a young adult. In 1940, she became an ambulance driver in France until the country fell to the Germans. She escaped to Spain where she met a British intelligence officer who was impressed with her enough to give her the telephone number of a “friend” in England who could get her a job. Her new “job” sent her back to France where she created agent cells until her cover was blown. Early in 1944, she transferred to Britain’s SOE and slipped back into France disguised as an elderly peasant. Over six months, she recruited, trained, and armed three units of more than 300 agents who performed sabotage against the Germans.

Czechoslovakian Maria Gulovich stumbled into the underground when her sister brought home a Jewish woman and her five-year-old son who were fleeing from the Nazis. Maria hid them in her apartment until they could be moved. It wasn’t long before she quit her teaching job and joined the Slovak national uprising. As things fell apart in the country, Maria was recruited by OSS agent James Green to help him evacuated downed airmen. Captured, she maintained her OSS cover through twelve hours of interrogation. During her transfer to a prison camp, she escaped, making it out of the country safely and performing several assignments in Austria before the end of the war.

Two brave women whose routes to service as spies were as unique as they were. I repeat…do you consider yourself brave?

About the book:

Under Cover: In the year since arriving in London, journalist Ruth Brown has put a face on the war for her readers at home in the U.S. Thus far, juggling her career and her relationship with Detective Inspector Trevor Gelson hasn’t proven too challenging. The war gets personal for Ruth when her friend Amelia is murdered, and Trevor is assigned to the case.

Life gets even more unsettling when clues indicate her best friend, Varis, is passing secrets to the enemy. Convinced Varis is innocent, Ruth must find the real traitor as the clock ticks down toward Operation Husky-the Allied invasion of Sicily. Circumstantial evidence leads Trevor to suspect her of having a part in Amelia’s death, and Ruth must choose between her heart and her duty.

Purchase Link: https://amzn.to/31ju3I6

 

About Linda:

Linda Shenton Matchett writes about ordinary people who did extraordinary things in days gone by. A volunteer docent and archivist for the Wright Museum, Linda is also a trustee for her local public library. She is a native of Baltimore, Maryland and has lived in historic places all her life. Now located in central New Hampshire, her favorite activities include exploring historic sites and immersing herself in the imaginary worlds created by other authors. 

Social Media Links:

Website/blog: http://www.LindaShentonMatchett.com

Newsletter signup (receive a free short story): https://mailchi.mp/74bb7b34c9c2/lindashentonmatchettnewsletter

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LindaShentonMatchettAuthor

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Linda-Shenton-Matchett/e/B01DNB54S0

BookBub: http://www.bookbub.com/authors/linda-shenton-matchett

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author_linda_matchett

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lindasmatchett

Twitter: @lindasmatchett

Chapter One

A scream pierced the air. Ruth Brown’s head jerked up at the sound, halting her rush through London’s lunchtime crowds on Old Street.

There was a motion from above. A body hurtled to the ground from the brick building across the street. Her eyes widened, and a wave of nausea swept over her.

She turned toward her best friend, Varis Gladstone, whose blue eyes bulged in her whitened face. Murmurs rose from the throng who pointed to the open window in the building, one of many manufacturing plants that had been converted to war-material production two years ago after Hitler declared war on England. A canvas shade flapped in the breeze.

From amidst the mob, a shout rang out. “Is anyone a doctor? We need a doctor!”

Ruth tugged at Varis’s arm. “Come on. They need our help.”

Varis pulled away. “No they don’t. We’re not medical professionals.”

Surely we can do something of value. I’m going over.”

Ruth threaded her way through the mass of people. A lanky, dark-haired man bullied his way toward her. His shoulder slammed into hers, and he scowled when she stumbled. She glared at his retreating back then broke through the circle that had formed around the lifeless figure lying on the concrete walkway. Ruth froze at the sight of the familiar face and flowing red hair of her friend Amelia Harrell. A sob sounded from behind her, and Ruth turned. Varis stood with her arms wrapped around her middle, tears streaming down her cheeks.

##

The Message of Taming Julia — Jodie Wolfe

I believe many Christians are familiar with the Footprints in the Sand poem by Mary Stevenson. One of the most poignant lines I feel is when the Lord said, “The times when you have seen only one set of footprints, is when I carried you.” I’m sure you’ve had time in your life when you feel like you’re hanging on by your fingernails to the side of the boat in the midst of a storm-tossed sea. We don’t always feel God’s presence in our life, but that doesn’t mean He isn’t with us, often carrying us.

For a good chunk of my novel, Jules Montgomery has no idea what it means to follow the Lord. Throughout her story she learns more about God and who He is. She finds that each step of her life, the Lord has been calling her, wooing her to Him.

When her past catches up with Jules and she’s forced to confront it, she must make a choice about protecting her family. Through a series of events she learns that she can trust God even in the midst of a scary situation. She can trust God’s working in her life even when the outcome doesn’t have any hope of getting better. We also can trust God to work in our life. It’s important to seek Him with our whole heart. We can take comfort in Psalm 61:1-2 (KJV) “Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”

How about you… what circumstances in your life have stirred you to seek the Lord? Do you trust Him to work in your life? If you’d like to learn more about what it means to follow the Lord, to trust Him, to put your faith in Him, I’d love to talk with you. Please leave a comment so I can know how to pray for you!

Behind the Scenes of Taming Julia — Jodie Wolfe

Taming Julia is set in Burrton Springs, Kansas. No, it’s not a real place, but I based it on the area of Burrton and Pleasant Grove, Kansas. Over twenty-four years ago my in-laws moved there so my father-in-law could serve as a pastor for two small churches – one in the country and one in the small town of Burrton. We visited them several times during the years that they lived there. Each visit we got to tour around the area and view a lot of the historical sites. I fell in love with this area of the country.

My heroine, Jules Walker moved to Kansas from Texas to be a mail-order bride, even though she didn’t know what that was at the time. She helped her brother track outlaws in Texas as part of his job as a deputy US Marshal.

As part of the story she has to come to terms with a traumatic event in her past. I won’t share more so I don’t spoil it for you, but I needed somewhere in Texas for this incident to take place. Because my husband’s aunt and uncle live in Texas, they were a wealth of resources when it came to accurately describing the area. One place in particular is called the Narrows and it’s situated close to them, but it’s on private property.

A couple years ago I had the opportunity to travel and visit them. We received special permission to go on the private ranch and see the Narrows. It’s an unexpected area with sharp limestone rocks, and a deep cavern carved out by the Blanco River. Most times, it’s a sleepy waterway, but when the area has a flash flood, water rushes through the cavern and often to the top. When this happens, you can hear the water gushing from far away.

I so enjoyed being able to see the area first-hand. There are places where the water is shallow and others that are extremely deep pools. It has such a distinct beauty. At some point I hope to use this setting in another book.

Have you ever had the chance to travel to Kansas or Texas? What all did you see?

 

A Glimpse into Taming Julia — Jodie Wolfe

I’m happy to welcome author Jodie Wolfe back to the blog today to celebrate her new release. Learn more about her story below.

It’s release day! Always a fun day in the life of an author. I thought I’d give you an excerpt from the first chapter. Let me first start by sharing my back cover blurb:

In 1875, Kansas bachelor Drew Montgomery’s sole desire is to serve God, but his congregation’s ultimatum that he marry or leave, forces him to advertise for a wife by proxy.

Jules Walker strides into Drew’s life wearing breeches and toting a gun and saddle–more cowboy than bride. After years on the trail, she’s not exactly wife material, but she longs for home and family, and will do anything to ensure Drew never discovers what she really is.

This story was such fun to write. Here’s a brief look into my new historical romance:

Matrimony News, February 6, 1875 edition

Minister bachelor aged 27, height 5 feet 10 inches seeks genteel, honest and first-rate homemaker with a desire to serve God. Must be willing to marry by proxy and arrive in Burrton Springs, Kansas by May 1.

~*~

Burrton Springs, Kansas, Saturday, May 1, 1875

Dear Lord, please don’t let that creature be my new wife. Drew Montgomery swiped the sweat trickling a path down his neck and shoved the new hat back on his head. He squinted, taking in the lone passenger stepping from the stagecoach. At least, he thought it was a woman. He shielded his eyes from the sun, taking in the britches.

Britches? A gun belt strapped to a slim waist. He gulped. A rifle rested on her shoulder, and she wore a Stetson situated low on her brow. The figure shifted sideways, and Drew groaned, fearing his proxy mail-order bride had arrived by the look of all the curves. He squared his shoulders and crossed the street.

“Are you Montgomery?” Her coffee-brown gaze seared through him.

He snapped his gaping mouth shut and nodded. “Y-yes.”

“Name’s Jules Walker.” She shoved her hand into his and shook it so hard his teeth clattered. “I reckon, Jules Montgomery since we’re hitched.” She waved a slip of paper in his face. “Got the paper here to prove it. So are you my husband or not?”

Drew caught a whiff of dirt. He coughed and cleared his throat.

She peered at him as if he were a chicken with one leg.

“I’m Drew.” He managed to choke the words out. “Isn’t your name Julia?”

She scrunched her face, pushed her Stetson from her head, and allowed it to dangle from the string around her neck. Her brown hair scattered in disarray, slipping from a shoulder-length braid. “I can’t remember the last time I’ve been called Julia. Like I said, name’s Jules.”

“But…” Drew let the word hang between them. No matter. “Where’re your things?”

“Got my knapsack and that there.” She pointed to the top of the stagecoach. He expected to see a trunk, but a saddle rested there instead. What kind of woman brought a saddle into a marriage? What kind of woman showed up dressed like a man? No. No. Something was terribly wrong.

Are you ready to read more? 🙂 Be sure to check it out here:

Purchase Links for Taming Julia:

https://www.amazon.com/Taming-Julia-Jodie-Wolfe-ebook/dp/B083L8MDD5/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=taming+julia&qid=1578503989&sr=8-1

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/taming-julia-jodie-wolfe/1136004491?ean=9781522302711

https://pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=37_46&sort=&filter_id=671&alpha_filter_id=0

https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Jodie_Wolfe_Taming_Julia?id=FH7IDwAAQBAJ

Tune in tomorrow to learn more about the setting for Taming Julia.