Tag Archives: sweet romance

Guest Interview with Pam Crooks

I’m happy to introduce a writing friend, Pam Crooks. We met while contributing stories to a couple of multi-author series–one is the newly launched “Bachelors & Babies” series.

Tell us a bit about you and your background.

I grew up in the ranch country of western Nebraska.  Cowboys and pickup trucks were everywhere, and though I was a city girl through and through, those cowboys were thrilling.  My husband and I had four daughters before we moved to Omaha, and it was here where I discovered a writer’s group, Romance Authors of the Heartland.  Without RWA, I wonder if I’d be published today.

I’ve been a writer forever. I (like many other readers) read Kathleen Woodiwiss’ The Flame and the Flower, and I was hooked.  Back then, we didn’t have computers, and I typed out my story on a Smith-Corona electric typewriter, which was a birthday gift from my husband.  I was in heaven!  Imagine my delight a few years later when my brother gave me his cast-off Apple computer.  Oh, my goodness.  No more correction tape or White-Out.  Now THAT was heaven!

It took me nine years to make my first sale to Leisure Books, but when I did, the sales kept coming.  After four books with them, I got picked up by Harlequin Historicals and wrote ten more.  By then, they were having some distribution troubles, and the self-publishing phenomena hit.  I jumped on the band wagon with a few more titles, and well, the rest is history.

In 2019, I released three titles, two self-pubbed historicals and one contemporary with Tule Publishing.  I have come to love multi-author groups like Bachelors and Babies!  TRACE is my 23rd book, and it’s been quite a joyride.

Is your writing style planned or freestyle?

It’s a little bit of both.  I have to have a framework (doesn’t everyone?) with hero and heroine, their conflict and goals.  I love making them as opposite as I can since it makes the story writing easier (yeah, right).   But other than that, I am very much a pantster.  No matter how much I try to pre-plot, my brain goes in a different direction while I’m writing, and admittedly, a better one.

If you use music while writing, name your favorite types.

I do use music. It has to be instrumental, otherwise I’d sing along with the artist and that’d be a huge distraction. Ha!  Piano, flute, guitar, or harp are my favorites.  Top of the list, though, are Gregorian Chants.  So soothing.

Can you share a tip about what you do when you get stuck in creating a story?

My tip has to be my critique group and brainstorming verbally with them around my dining room table.  It’s that give and take, a lively and spirited discussion, that really gets my juices going.  After all these years, brainstorming is still my favorite part of writing.

Describe a normal writing day (or period, if you have other employment obligations).

I’m retired.  My brain can’t focus on writing until I get my daily slate cleared.  That means breakfast eaten, bed made, bathroom tidied, dog walked.  I have to finish email and some computer work, too.  By then, it’s usually late morning, and I finally get myself in front of the computer.  I stop for lunch with my husband and then take a brisk walk.  Inhaling deeply while I walk is miraculous and amazing.  I can then sit at my computer again and really focus.

I use a calendar to plot out my weekly page goals. I do a minimum of three pages a day, and if I don’t make the three pages one day, then the shortage gets tacked onto the next day.  Good incentive!

What’s your dream vacation destination?

Europe.  Specifically, Italy.  My grandparents immigrated from there, so the country’s influence has been a strong part of my childhood.  I hope to get there soon.  Fingers crossed!

Do you use visual aids (storyboards, Pinterest, collages) when plotting or writing?

I am VERY visual.  Pinterest is my salvation.  Very inspiring and just plain helpful.  And like I mentioned above, I need to see how many pages I’m accomplishing, too.  Writing them down on paper makes me feel like I’m actually accomplishing something.

Are you a pet person? If so, what do you have?

I wouldn’t call myself a pet person, but when my husband and I retired (a few months apart), I wanted a puppy to give a layer of purpose to our days.  We got a purebred Golden Retriever named Louie.  He lights up our days, keeps us walking, gives us something to talk about and take care of, and he is just a joy.  (Notice I didn’t say I enjoy the dog hair, cleaning up the backyard or his barking, but oh, well.)  I wouldn’t say the puppy stage is easy, but he’s almost three years old now and mellowing. Very smart and very sweet.  I can’t imagine my life without him!

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Trace McQuade has lost everything–his ranch, his brother, and the woman he wanted to marry. When his quest for justice fails, he leaves Texas to head north, but he never expects to gain an outlaw’s baby along the way.

Morgana Goldwater needs to be needed. After she endured a terrible tragedy, she lives in a narrow, protected world. When Trace needs help caring for the baby girl, she is quick to take them both into her heart and into her life.

But their troubles return, and Trace and Morgana must face their past to keep loving the little girl–and each other–in their future.

SNIPPET FROM REVIEW

5 stars–“Awesome book. I couldn’t put it down till I finished it. Now I have to wait another month for the next one to come out… great job, Pam.”

BUY LINK

Amazon  (free in Kindle Unlimited)

EXCERPT

If the basket held a tangle of rattlesnakes, Trace couldn’t have been more apprehensive looking inside.

Sure enough, there was a baby lying there, sleeping, with one miniature fist curled next to her cheek. She wasn’t much more than four or five months old. She had more hair than most, at least from other babies Trace had seen. Dark, with ends that curled over her ears and temple.

Slick-Shot had curly hair, too.

The knowledge churned inside Trace. Cruel twist of fate the man’s bastard daughter had been forced upon him. Wasn’t it enough the outlaw had stolen the woman Trace once loved, and worse, shot and killed Robbie? Who wouldn’t be angry over it? Who wouldn’t try to refuse?

Trace wallowed in a thick pool of righteous indignation, for sure, but the longer he stood there, the harder it got to pull his stare off the infant. He couldn’t see much of Emma in her, but that part might come out later. Too early to tell what kind of woman she’d be, too. If she’d have her father’s inclination for crime or if she’d take on a more lawful frame of mind.

Regardless, the baby was innocent of her father’s murdering ways and Emma’s poor decision-making. A miniature human being that, through no choice of her own, now depended wholly and completely on a stranger—on Trace—for survival.

He blew out a breath from the immensity of it.

But he’d not be beholden to this child just because Emma wanted him to be. Trace had plans, Nebraska plans, and none of them included taking care of an outlaw’s baby.

He just had to get through tonight, that’s all.

Tomorrow, he’d make arrangements. Whatever he needed to do for the baby’s best interests—and his own.

His mood lifted. Careful not to jar the child into waking, he cradled the basket and knapsack in his arm and entered the cabin, easing the door into a quiet latch behind him. He managed to set the basket onto his bed with little more than a faint stirring from the baby, then went for the knapsack, hoping its contents would make caring for a child easy and quick.

Not surprisingly, the bag yielded several sleeping gowns, diapers, a can of condensed milk, a contraption for a feeding bottle and a letter.

Taking it, he ripped open the envelope, unfolded the paper and read the feminine handwriting:

Trace,

You took care of me once, now I’m asking you to take care of my daughter. Her name is Harriett, and she was born on January 28, 1881.

There’s no one I trust more than you.

Emma

Trace’s lip curled. She might as well be standing right beside him, speaking the words in her Texas drawl. It was just like her to expect such a thing from him, too, taking on the care of her daughter as if the girl was a geranium in a pot, needing only watering now and then. Trace could imagine her lashes fluttering, her smile coy, cajoling his promise to do what she wanted. As if he had nothing else to do with his life.

Until he remembered how she’d suffered because of him. A physical pain that would’ve paled compared to the knowledge she wouldn’t live to see her baby daughter grow up. The prospect of leaving her behind, of forcing her into the care of a stranger, well, hell. Trace couldn’t think of anything worse.

Emotion welled up in his chest. He owed Emma, for sure. He’d take care of Harriett as long as he could. Until he found someone better capable and more deserving.

Emma trusted him to do at least that.

A whimper intruded into his thoughts. He tossed the letter aside and strode back to the wicker basket. Seeing him, Harriett suddenly quieted. Her dark eyes fastened onto him and rounded.

Then, her little face scrunched, turned red, and she filled her lungs with a howl that reached to the rafters. The girl must’ve known Trace wasn’t familiar. Might be she was even afraid, and Trace scooped her up and put her to his shoulder to offer some comfort.

A wet diaper soaked into Trace’s shirt. Grimacing, he rummaged one-handed through the pillowcase stuffed at the foot of the basket for something dry to put between them, only to discover it held more diapers, just as wet and soiled with who knew what else, carrying a godawful smell that nearly felled him to his knees.

Trace stuffed it closed again and bolted toward fresher air. The howling grew to a fevered, shrieking pitch, and no matter how he patted and soothed and bounced, no matter how hard he tried to think of the best thing to do, he had no choice but to accept the cold, hard truth.

It was going to be a very long night.

While expecting her first child (more years back than she cares to count), Pam Crooks read her very first romance novel, and she’s been in love with them ever since. She grew up in the ranch country of western Nebraska, and it was inevitable she’d eventually write lots of books about cowboys. Pam still lives in Nebraska with her husband (who is not a cowboy), four married daughters and a whole slew of perfect grandchildren.

She’s a long-time member of RWA and RAH, her local chapter. Pam is also one of the founders of Petticoats & Pistols, a popular blogsite for western romance.  She loves to cook, hang out at her lake cabin, and decorate birthday cakes for anyone who will let her.

WEB CONTACTS

To see more books Pam has written, visit www.pamcrooks.com

Or visit her author page on Amazon 

Or check out her page on Bookbub

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Release day for Hazelanne

This novella is my second title in the multi-author series titled “The Widows of Wildcat Ridge” which is set in 1884 Utah Territory.

Hazelanne Pitts dreams of more in life than the responsibilities of raising her five younger siblings to assist a sickly mother. Secretly, she corresponds with a rancher in Wildcat Ridge, Utah Territory, who wants a mail-order bride. When the money for the stagecoach ticket arrives, she sets off to be married. But a week later, a mine explosion claims the life of her new groom. Struggling to tend the ranch chores on her own, she becomes injured and doesn’t know if she can ride to town for help.

A pretty sweet-natured passenger, Hazelanne, caught stagecoach shotgun rider Brice MacAndrew’s eye when she traveled to Wildcat Ridge. Hearing she was the mail-order bride of Clay Oliphant, a known drunkard, didn’t sit well. After the mine disaster, Brice goes out to the Oliphant ranch and finds an injured Hazelanne who is on the edge of collapse. The only way he can help is to offer a marriage of convenience. Can the ranch become the haven both are looking for?

Amazon buy link at only $2.99

I have ARC copies available for those willing to post a review. Reviews posted within seven days of receipt earn the reviewer a chance at a $10 Amazon card or choice of three backlist titles. Email l.carrollbradd@gmail.com to receive a copy and mention this blog post.

Backlist promotion–Unlocked Treasure

A Halloween-set romance in ebook, audio, and anthology (print too)

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TAGLINE

Will a prophecy keep a lonely woman from accepting the promise of adventure?

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Aleen MacRae blames the lure of the sea for breaking apart first her family then her engagement. When her interest is caught by a man she sees both in person and in a dream, she resists—afraid to believe in her aunt’s prediction that her future is tied to the sea.

Braden Williams is on the hunt for treasure buried centuries earlier by Rhode Island pirates. His search brings him to the property where Aleen lives. Collaboration on genealogy research draws them closer, and Braden steers her toward his true passion–sailing.

Attending a party with Braden’s family lets her glimpse what she’s been missing. An unexpected discovery before her date with Braden at the Halloween Midnight Organ Recital forces a decision. Will Aleen play things safe or accept what this free-spirited man offers?

BUY LINKS

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audio at TWRP

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audio at Amazon

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EXCERPT

Ah, the story of her life—practically invisible. The reminder his first sighting had been of her bikini-clad backside made her blush. Still didn’t change the facts. Aleen squared her shoulders. “I remember, but the Manor grounds are still closed.” Should she be nervous about being alone with this stranger, especially one who ignored posted rules?

“Sorry for the intrusion. Let me start over.” Smiling, he approached and extended his right hand. “My name’s Braden Williams.”

Aleen bit her lower lip, but accepted his hand. “Pleased to meet you. I’m Aleen MacRae.” At the moment their hands clasped, she felt warmth flooding her fingers. With a jerk, she released her grip, tingling sensations running along her skin. Immediately, the scent of fresh air and summer breezes wafted her way. Definitely a man of the sea. Just where I foretold your future lies. Whispers of her great-aunt Zsofika’s prophecy trickled through Aleen’s thoughts. At the memory, her cheeks flamed with heat.

“Wow.” Frowning, Braden flexed his hand and narrowed his gaze then dropped it to his flexing fingers. “That was bizarre.”

“Static electricity, from all that wind yesterday.” A reasonable explanation. In the back of her mind, Aleen could hear Zsofika scoff, “Static schmatic. A connection like that is destiny.”

“Well…” His gaze searched her face. “Aleen—hey, that’s pretty, like the direction alee.” A wide smile exposed even teeth.

Her own smile dimmed. Like I’ve never heard that before. “Thanks.” This guy was not charming his way around the rules. “Sorry, but you’ll need to come back when the gardens are open for visitors. That’s Wednesdays through—”

“Yeah, I read the sign.” He gave a dismissive wave then turned to gaze back at the main house. “But I just needed five minutes to check out some dimensions and the lot layout.”

“So, you woke up this morning and just decided to start out your week by trespassing?”

WEB CONTACTS

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Hauntings in the Garden, Volume Two, Anthology including Unlocked Treasure and:

Love Her Like the Devil by Stacy Dawn

Caper Magic by Veronica Lynch

ShriekWeek by Anne Knol

TWRP ebook

TWRP print

Amazon

Amazon print

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Contest for Small-Town Romance Titles

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I’m participating in a contest where two lucky people will be chosen from those who enter to win a book from each participating author. Hosted by BookSweeps, this contest run through October 24th.

My book Laced by Love, is one of 40 ebooks in the giveaway. Other participating authors include Shirleen Davies, Cathy McDavid, Kathye Quick, Charlene Raddon, and many more.

Free reads go to every entrant and an ereader is the grand prize.

Good luck!

Join the fun here!

Release Day for Love’s Target, a Montana Sky Kindle Worlds novella

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I’m pleased to announce the release of Love’s Target, my 7th story in the Montana Sky world created by Debra Holland.

Blurb:

When a casino owner demands her hand in marriage to cancel her father’s outstanding debt, Vanora Deverell and her father go on the run. No matter what Vanora does, she’ll never do it as well as her late brother, even though she’s stepped in as her father’s apprentice. Having to dress as a boy to enter shooting contest grates on her nerves, but her shooting skill is their best chance to get out of debt.

Rancher Trent Melbyrne strives for recognition as a horse breeder in his own right. In a Bozeman shooting contest, he’s chagrined when his accomplishments are bested by a boy…until he learns a secret about his opponent. By revealing the shooter’s secret, he sets off a string of events that lead to a showdown on his ranch in Morgan’s Crossing, Montana Territory. Can he atone for the danger he’s caused?

Only $1.99 on Amazon or free in Kindle Unlimited

Also new to the Montana Sky world are stories by three other authors.

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A May Bride by Kari Trumbo

Jasper’s Wish by Linda Hubalek

Why the Heart Loves by Judy Pennell

Guest Release Promotion–Eagle Eye by Darcy Flynn

I had so much fun linking Jillian Jeffrey, a character from my first book, Keeper of My Heart, with the second book in my “Like No Other” Series. My readers wanted Jill’s story told, and I’m happy they insisted.

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Could one little mistake derail everything she’s worked for?

Undercover journalist, Cameron Phillips, is known for his forthright exposé articles uncovering scandals of New York City’s rich and famous. Using the pseudonym Eagle Eye to hide his identity, he is free to wield his finger pointing, no-holds-barred articles at leisure.

Jillian Jeffrey, teen fashion industry’s latest darling, has a heart for the less fortunate. Her goal is to raise enough money for fashion icon Anna Delany’s, Like No Other charity foundation. The donation will not only keep the charity afloat, but will place Jill in the running for a coveted position on LNO’s board of directors.

In a moment of weakness, at the charity gala, Jill reluctantly accepts a bet from her ex-boyfriend and uses a homeless man to raise twenty thousand dollars. Unknown to Jill, the homeless guy is the cynical, undercover journalist, and Jill has just become his latest exposé target.

In a twist of fate, Cameron is soon hired to shadow Jill as she volunteers with the charity. Shorthaired and clean-shaven, he looks nothing like the bearded, disheveled man Jill had encountered the night of the gala. During their time together, he not only discovers the noble reason behind the bet, but witnesses first hand his article’s negative impact on her business. Faced with the prospect of losing her, will Cameron come up with an antidote for Eagle Eye’s toxic exposé before Jill loses everything she’s worked for?

BUY LINKS

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

EXCERPT

“Okay. I admit it. I was having coffee in the bistro near the park when I spotted you. So, I followed you here.”

An incredulous expression crossed his face. “You do see the weirdness in this don’t you?”

“I felt badly for what Sandra said last week.”

“It was the truth, wasn’t it?”

“To a point, but—”

“Look. An abandoned subway is no place for a spoiled socialite. This place is dangerous.”

“You think I’m spoiled?”

“Yes and twenty thousand dollars richer.”

“The twenty thousand was for charity.”

“I guess that made what you did to me okay?”

“No. Of course not.” She sighed. “Look, I admit that I’ve done fairly well for myself. But it hasn’t always been that way.”

“You’re a Jeffrey. It’s always been that way, sweetheart.”

She pulled her hands away from the flame and clasped them to her chest. “What do you mean?”

“Wealthy, wrapped up in yourself, and according to the society pages, One of New York City’s wealthiest families back in town,” he mocked. “Everyone who’s anyone in this city knows about the Jeffrey girls of Scarsdale.”

“Girls?”

“Your sisters.”

“Oh, of course, them.” First Mark and now him. No wonder he had ill feelings toward her. He thought she was one of those Jeffreys.

“So, you think because of that you know me?”

“Not you personally, but…” He shrugged.

“When you’ve met one high society dame, you’ve met them all. Is that it?”

“Dame? Now there’s a word.” The corners of his mouth lifted. “First hobo and now dame. You and your friends should get out more.”

For one second, all she saw was his to-die-for half-smile. That along with his disheveled appearance was quite a package.

“Well, according to your earlier comment, my friends and I get out plenty.”

He gazed down at her. His crooked smile still played around his lips and his eyes held a sudden twinkle that disarmed her. But she couldn’t help notice the note of disdain behind that charming twinkle. She’d used him, coaxed him into a glamorous environment, then humiliated him. It probably wouldn’t make any difference as to what he thought of her, so let him think what he wanted.

Darcy Flynn

Darcy Flynn is known for her heartwarming, sweet contemporary romances. Her refreshing storylines, irritatingly handsome heroes and feisty heroines will delight and entertain you from the first page to the last. Miss Flynn’s heroes and heroines have a tangible chemistry that is entertaining, humorous and competitive.

Darcy lives with her husband and a menagerie of other living creatures on her horse farm in Franklin, Tennessee. She raises rare breed chickens, stargazes on warm summer nights and indulges daily in afternoon tea.

Although published in the Christian non-fiction market under her real name, Joy Griffin Dent, the empty nest was what turned her to writing romantic fiction. Proving that it’s never too late to follow your dreams.

WEB CONTACTS

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Stay in touch with her latest happenings by signing up for her newsletter here.

Guest Release Promotion–A Rancher’s Request by E. Ayers

Most marriages in the late 1800’s were actually arranged marriages. I wanted to use a local tie to Creed’s Crossing, WY. It didn’t take me long to decide to use a young woman from Franklin, VA and have her discover that her father has arranged a marriage for her. Then the fun began.

The historical seesaw into the attitudes of the time, living conditions, along with the social customs, and characters with a sense of humor was all I needed to create this story of the early 1890s.

A Rancher's Request ebook cover

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Zadie Larkford, recently graduated from an Eastern women’s college, lives a quiet life in her hometown of Franklin, Virginia. Content to spend her days painting by the river and watching her friends marry, she is shocked to learn that her father has promised her hand in marriage to a complete stranger. Ultimately unable to disobey, she leaves her childhood home to travel – unaccompanied – to Creed’s Crossing, Wyoming to meet her betrothed.

BUY LINK

Preorder on Amazon only 99cents until June 27th

EXCERPT

Duncan settled his horse before making his way to his cabin. Opening the door, he encountered the water on the floor where it had come through the open window. One more thing in my day that is not going well. First I get soaked and now this? He left his packages on the table and grabbed his dirty clothes to mop up the water. If I’m stuck inside, I might as well do my laundry. With the worst of the water soaked into his clothes, he pulled off his wet shirt and tossed it with the others. From the shelf near his bed, he lifted the last pair of clean pants he owned and left the last clean shirt where it was. He certainly didn’t need to be dressed to do his laundry. Then he tossed a few pieces of wood into his stove and began to heat some water. While he waited on the water, he unwrapped his food items. The way they’d been bundled, the only things that had become wet were his sweet sticky buns and the paper that held the corned beef.

If he cooked the beef right away, the water wouldn’t matter, and certainly he could eat a dozen slightly waterlogged buns before the day was finished. One cookie was also a little damp. He shoved that cookie into his mouth as he poured the hot water into the washtub.

By the time he’d finished doing his laundry, his stomach was loudly protesting. He sat at his table and ate three of the cinnamon raisin buns and washed them down with leftover coffee that had been there since morning. He loved those sweet treats more than anything he could remember eating at home. Sorry, Mom. Even soggy, these are the best.

It was then it dawned on him that he had letters from home. He had tossed them on his bed as he had gathered his laundry. Collecting them, he chose to first read the flourished handwriting from Franklin, Virginia. From my future bride?

He opened each piece of mail and spread out the damp pages on his table, and then poured the last bit of coffee into his cup. The cabin was hot from the stove, so he opened the front door, hoping that the roof over the porch was enough to keep the deluge of water from entering.

Raindrops hitting his metal roof told him when the rain had eased up and when it returned to a full downpour. His parents had a standing seam roof, and he remembered hearing the dissonance of rain on the roof. But his childhood home had an attic to deaden the sound, and this cabin had nothing to suppress the cacophony. He covered his ears and realized it did nothing for the situation.

Perspiration ran down his chest and soaked the waistband of his pants. He downed that last bit of coffee and made another pot. Pumping another pan full of water, he added the corned beef. He figured he might as well fix the meat. It certainly wasn’t going to get any cooler anytime soon.

Satisfied, he picked up the one letter written in an elegant script and sat on the bench on the front porch. Rain sheeted off the roof and onto the ground. He lifted the scalloped page to his nose and sniffed. “Humph.” Not even the slightest scent of perfume. “I thought women were supposed to scent their letters.”

The rain had caused the ink to bleed on the page, but it was still very legible. He read the note, and when he reached the part about her refusal to slop the pigs, he couldn’t stop his laughter. As his composure returned, he read the rest of his letters. As usual, his mother missed him. And his father’s note was brief, but mostly about herring and the number of pounds per day that had been caught. The only other letter that captured his interest was from Dr. Gregory Larkford, promising his daughter’s hand in marriage.

Zadie was apparently spoiled, but from the father’s letter, she was learning how to manage a household and do the associated chores. The father also spoke about his daughter’s talent. Apparently she was quite gifted.

Duncan went inside and checked on the stove. He fixed another cup of coffee and then found his box that contained pen and paper. So many times while plowing he’d given thought to how he might woo his bride. But after reading the letter from her father and Zadie’s own letter, all thoughts of pressing and sending her the pretty orange and yellow flowers that grew in the fields left his mind. She wasn’t going to be impressed with a few dead flowers.

He stifled his laughter and figured he could give what he’d received from her. He opened his box of stationery, withdrew a sheet of paper, opened his inkbottle, and dipped the nib of his pen into the liquid.

Dear Miss Zadie Larkford,

I don’t own any pigs.

Sincerely,

Mr. Duncan Lord

E. Ayers 4x5

E. Ayers lives in a pre-Civil War home with a rescued dog and cat. Her idea of a perfect day is spent at the keyboard, coffee in hand, and everything in the house actually working as it should. Unfortunately old houses never cooperate.

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99cent sale on Laced by Love and An Unlikely Marriage

If you read historical romance and want a couple of great bargains, try my Montana Sky Kindle Worlds stories that are on sale during June for only 99cents each.

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Laced By Love is one of the original 14 launch novels that expanded the little mining town of Morgan’s Crossing established by Debra Holland in two of her books, Mail-Order Brides of the West: Prudence and Mail-Order Brides of the West: Bertha.

A vaudeville troupe arrives in Morgan’s Crossing late in the traveling season. When an event occurs that shakes up the troupe, seamstress Cinnia decides to say no to older sister Nola who has made the sisters’ decisions since being orphaned a decade earlier. Leather worker Nicolai Andrusha is lying low and using an alias until the patent is approved on his family’s leather tanning formula. But he finds the auburn-haired poetess irresistible. Will Nicolai oppose his family obligation to help the stranded beauty who has caught his eye?

buy link Amazon

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An Unlikely Marriage follows the second York sister’s relationship in a marriage of convenience story.

Helping injured cowboy Torin Quaid drive mustangs north seems like a good way for vaudevillian Nola York to earn a train ticket east—and get one step closer to her goal of auditioning for Buffalo Bill’s Wild West stage production. Easy-going Torin liked the pretty brunette the first night he saw her performing on stage, and he admires her determination to complete the drive.

The temporary marriage is solely for propriety’s sake to avoid scandal on the week-long overland ride to Meadowlark. Until disaster strikes, and the two must rely on each other—emotionally and physically—to safely reach Torin’s ranch. Will a marriage of convenience turn into more on a trail drive through Montana Territory?

Buy link Amazon

Grandma’s Wedding Quilts series on sale

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The entire 12-book series is on sale in connection with Mother’s Day. The prequel through book 7 are on sale until May 14. Books 8-12 are on sale May 12 through May 16. All are priced at only 99 cents each. 12 stories for less than $6 is quite a bargain. Here’s the individual page on Amazon

The stories take place ranging from post-Civil War to early 1890s and in a variety of states. One of the main characters of each story is a descendant of Mary Godwin Benton Palmer who sewed a wedding quilt for each of her grandchildren.

My story, Ione’s Dilemma, comes 8th in line (on sale today through Tuesday) and has a tie to my existing Dorado, Texas series.

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When Ione Forrester calls off her wedding, she becomes the social pariah of Des Moines. Much to her society parents’ chagrin. To escape the gossip, Ione accepts a teaching job in Dorado, Texas, vowing to avoid scandal at all costs. Relocating from a doctor’s household with cook and maids to a room in a boarding house is quite an adjustment. Then she has to face her biggest challenge—a schoolhouse full of students.

Carpenter Morgan Shipley’s business is doing well and now he’s looking for companionship. An ad for a mail-order bride brings a deluge of letters, which prove more than he can handle. To his surprise, an intriguing woman from a big city arrives in his small Texas town. Correspondence is nothing like interacting with a flesh-and-blood woman every day. But gossip-leery Ione wants nothing to do with Morgan’s attempts at courting, which makes him try even harder.

Amazon 99cents

Kindle Unlimited FREE

Release Promotion–Baling Wire Promises

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YAY! Today is release day for BALING WIRE PROMISES, Entertainers of the West #4, a Montana Sky Kindle Worlds novella. In this story, I bring the third Andrusha brother, bounty hunter Pete Andrews, who is still living under his alias from when spies attempted to learn the family’s leather tanning secret, into contact again with his brothers in Morgan’s Crossing.  On his ride from Idaho Territory, he encounters a woman and five children making their way south after an orphanage fire robs them of their home. Raised better than to desert a woman, Pete offers to help her reach the next town.

Only by a fluke did Fantine Pomeroy and five children survive an orphanage fire. Now she needs to travel hundreds of miles to deliver them to Virginia City. Fantine’s upbeat manner is tested by the exhausting toil of driving all day, foraging for food and dealing with traumatizing nightmares. But a promise must be honored. One night a stranger invades their campfire, and a tentative alliance is forged.

Exclusive to Kindle

I’m looking for readers willing to accept an ARC with the promise of posting a review by the end of this month. Those doing so will be entered into a drawing for either a print copy (US only) or a boxed set of A Year of Romance, Books 1-4 in “Dorado, Texas” series. Interested, email me at l.carrollbradd@gmail.com. Limited copies available.