I’d like to welcome Caroline Clemmons to the blog today! She’s giving us a glimpse behind the scenes of Angeline.
Please help me celebrate the release this month of ANGELINE, Bride Brigade book two, on Amazon and in Kindle Unlimited at http://amzn.com/B01CEK3W0S.
Creating this town in which all the women are elderly widows or part of older couples—except for the wealthy young widow, Lydia Jane Harrison—was fun. Many bachelors are threatening to move to Fort Worth or another city so they can meet a wife and start a family. Who can blame them?
Lydia loathes the fact there are no women her age and no children in town. Her friend Sophia Gaston challenges Lydia to do something about the problem because Sophia’s son is threatening to leave. Lydia travels back to Richmond, Virginia to recruit young women of high caliber with a view to marriage. She chooses four but by the time she reaches Tarnation, she has seven young women with her. I love the name of the town, Tarnation, don’t you?
The site of this fictional town near the base of the Palo Pinto Mountains in North Central Texas is an area I love. To people from other locales, these may look like hills. By geological standards, they are mountains. There is something about that area that calls to me. I never tire of driving through the mountains and picturesque small towns like Palo Pinto, Strawn, and Santo.
This was one of the hardest books I’ve written. I’ve said that before, but this really was the most difficult. Not because of research, but because the hero is the minister of Tarnation. Writing a minister hero without being too “churchy” was a challenge. Not that I have anything against inspirational romances—I read them, but they’re not what I write. My goal is to have the same tone for each of the Bride Brigade books. I’m sure my family is happy I’ve completed and published ANGELINE so I’d quit fretting about it (yes, that’s a nice way of saying complaining).
I have to admit I love the heroine, Angeline Chandler, and the hero, Grady McIntyre. In my opinion, they make the perfect couple. Lydia Harrison gave Angeline a second chance and secretly knew she was right for Grady. This makes a marriage for two of the seven women Lydia brought to Tarnation.
Here’s the blurb for ANGELINE:
A desperate young woman
A second chance
A life-changing decision.
Angeline Chandler didn’t invite the attack that created her condition but she’s suffering the result. Disowned by her family and left alone and destitute, she gets a second chance when a kind woman rescues her and invites her to travel to Tarnation, Texas with six other young women for the purpose of marriage with a local bachelor. The prospect of marrying one man while carrying another’s child worries Angeline. Who would want her with another man’s baby?
Grady McIntyre is a minister whose wife died soon after their son was born. The woman who has been helping with his toddler has told him she’s too old to continue. When Angeline’s name is suggested as a part-time nanny, he seizes the chance to hire her. Their attraction is instantaneous but Angeline resists. A minister needs a virtuous woman, not a fallen one. Soon they marry and both are happy.
Trouble rears its ugly head until matters come to a crisis. Angeline and Grady must be strong to protect their love and preserve Grady’s ministry.
Here’s an excerpt from ANGELINE:
The vigor which had been with her on her walk had completely disappeared. In its place a clammy, smothering sensation overwhelmed her. If only she could reach Lydia’s she’d be safe. She hardly remembered taking her fabric and going out the door.
The world spun and she reached out her hand to steady herself but found only air. She gasped for breath, unable to breathe. Her knees turned to rubber and she felt herself sinking.
Firm hands clasped her upper arms. “Miss, may I help you?”
She looked into the kindest hazel eyes she’d ever seen. His blond hair barely showed under his hat. “I don’t know what came over me. I suppose I’m still tired from my journey.”
He looped her arm onto his. “I’m the local pastor, Grady McIntyre. Please allow me to escort you to the Harrison home.”
“Thank you, I’m Angeline Chandler. Frankly, I can use a solid arm to lean on for the walk.” She clasped his forearm as she would a stair banister. For a minister, he was muscular and appeared strong.
“You must be one of the young women who came with Lydia. I couldn’t get away to greet your arrival but I understand there was quite a reception committee.”
She forced a smile. After all, he was gallant enough to help her and deserved a friendly response. “I was awfully tired. I hardly remember anyone except the mercantile owner and the sheriff. Lydia made a point of greeting them.”
“I remember that trip and imagine by then you only wanted a bath and a bed. That’s a tiring ride.”
“Deadly. I’m surprised my teeth didn’t fall out with all the bumps and rattles.”
“Don’t understand how anyone’s brave enough to leave town. Once I arrived, I vowed never to leave.”
She grinned at his attempt to cheer her. “Me, too…
I hope you’ll read ANGELINE. If you haven’t read the first Bride Brigade book, JOSEPHINE, won’t you try it, too? There are five more of the Bride Brigade series to come. So far, reviews have been good for both books. I hope you agree. If you do, please post a review.
Caroline Clemmons is an Amazon bestselling and award winning author of historical and contemporary western romances. A frequent speaker at conferences and seminars, she has taught workshops on characterization, point of view, and layering a novel.
Caroline and her husband live in the heart of Texas cowboy country with their menagerie of rescued pets. When she’s not indulging her passion for writing, Caroline enjoys family time, reading, travel, browsing antiques, genealogy, and getting together with friends.