In 1866 Colorado, Ethan Kincaid agrees to a marriage of convenience with the same casual disregard he gives every decision. Audra Gilliland, young mother of two, accepts his proposal because she wants to stop being a burden to her newly married stepdaughter.
And suddenly both of them are in far deeper than they'd planned.
Ethan doesn't expect Audra to affect him so profoundly, and when she begins to, he's terrified of the pain he's felt before when someone he loved was seriously injured on his watch. He's determined that his new wife will do as he says so he can keep her safe from the dangers that lurk on their ranch.
Audra has been cared for all her life by one man or another--and they've done a poor job of it. Now she's planning to stand up for herself. And her new husband had better agree or get out of her way!
What will it take to transform two wayward hearts fearful of getting in too deep into two trusting hearts ready to risk falling deeply in love?
Seth Kincaid survived a fire in a cave, but he's never been the same. He was always a reckless youth, but now he's gone over the edge. He ran off to the Civil War and came back crazier than ever.
After the war, nearly dead from his injuries, it appears Seth got married. Oh, he's got a lot of excuses, but his wife isn't happy to find out Seth doesn't remember her. Callie has searched, prayed, and worried. Now she's come to the Kincaid family's ranch in Colorado to find her lost husband.
Callie isn't a long-suffering woman. Once she knows her husband is alive, she wants to kill him. She's not even close to forgiving him for abandoning her.
Then more trouble shows up in the form of a secret Seth's pa kept for years. The Kincaid brothers might lose their ranch if they can't sort things out. It's enough to drive a man insane--but somehow it's all making Seth see things more clearly. And now that he knows what he wants, no one better stand in his way.
Dare Riker is a doctor who saves lives, but someone seems determined to end his. It may have something to do with the traitors he dealt with during the Civil War, or it might be related to the recent incident with Flint Greer and the ranch. Whoever the culprit is, he or she seems really fired up, and Dare can't let his guard down for a moment, which is a challenge, since right now he's trying to win the heart of the recently widowed Glynna.
Glynna Greer came west as a mail-order bride and ended up in a bad situation. Now her husband, Flint, is dead, and she's determined to care for her son and daughter on her own. She wants to believe Dare Riker is as decent as he seems, but she's terrified to lock herself into another marriage. She plans to support her small family by opening a diner--never mind that cooking is not her greatest talent. The men in Broken Wheel, Texas, are so desperate for home cooking that they seem willing to overlook dried-out beef and blackened biscuits.
Glynna can't help but notice that danger follows Dare wherever he goes. There's the avalanche. And then the fire. But things really get out of hand when someone plunges a knife from Glynna's diner into Dare's back. Are Flint's cronies still plotting revenge? Is Glynna's son engaged in a misguided attempt to protect his mother? Is a shadowy outsider still enraged over past injustices? And can Dare survive long enough to convince Glynna to take another chance on love?
This charming bouquet of novellas introduces you to four Hitching Post Mail-Order Bride Catalogue prospects in the year 1870, all eager for second chances . . . and hungry for happiness. Year in, year out, they’ll learn that love often comes in unexpected packages.
“And then Came Spring” by Margaret Brownley
Mary-Jo has traveled halfway across the country to meet her match, arriving just in time for his funeral. Returning home seems like her only option until her would-be brother-in-law proposes a more daring idea.
“An Ever After Summer” by Debra Clopton
Ellie had no idea she’s not what Matthew ordered. And what’s wrong with being a “Bible thumper” anyway? She’s determined to show him she’s tougher than she looks—and just the girl he needs.
“Autumn’s Angel” by Robin Lee Hatcher
Luvena would be perfect for Clay if she didn’t come with kids. But kids are a deal breaker, especially in a rough-and-trouble mining town. e trouble is, there’s no money to send them back . . .
“Winter Wedding Bells” by Mary Connealy
David’s convinced he’s not long for the world. He needs someone to mother his boys when he’s gone—nothing more. Can plucky Irish Megan convince him to work at living instead of dying?
Swept away when her wagon train attempts a difficult river crossing, Ruthy MacNeil isn't all that upset at being separated from the family who raised her. All they've ever done is work her to the bone. She prayed for a chance to get away, and then came the raging flood. Alive but disoriented, she's rescued by Luke Stone...so unfortunately, there are more chances to die in her immediate future.
Luke is heading home to reclaim the ranch stolen from his family. But the men who killed his father are working hard to ensure Luke doesn't make it alive. He has no choice but to keep moving. Still, he can't just abandon Ruthy, so she'll have to come along.
His friends--a ragtag group of former Civil War soldiers--take a fast interest in the pretty gal. Luke thinks that's rather rude--he's the one who found her. And the more time he spends around the hard-working young woman who is a mighty good cook, the more he finds himself thinking beyond revenge and toward a different future. For the first time in a long time, Luke is tempted to turn from his destructive path and be swept away by love.
Four best-selling, award-winning historical romance authors join together to share tales of unlikely love sparked in the late 1800s, reminding us that love often arrives in the most unexpected ways.
Spitfire Sweetheart by Mary Connealy
Maizy Place is an unruly tomboy. When she causes an accident, injuring neighbor Rylan Carstens, she becomes his unlikely caregiver. Rylan has never noticed how pretty his infuriating neighbor is, and he never expected to fall in love.
A Love Letter to the Editor by Robin Lee Hatcher
Molly Everton is the outspoken daughter of the town newspaper's owner. When her father brings in an outsider to be editor, she tries to drive him out of town. But Jack Ludgrove is not intimidated. HeÆs resolved to change Molly's mind about himùas an editor and as a man.
A Cowboy for Katie by Debra Clopton
Katie Pearl has no interest in men or love. But she needs help on her ranch so she hires Thad Rayburn, a wandering cowboy looking to make a buck. Will Thad change KatieÆs mind?
Courting Trouble by Margaret Brownley
Grace Davenport is either the unluckiest woman aliveùor a killer. When her third husband is found dead, Grace is arrested. Attorney Brock Daniels isn't interested in the caseùuntil he meets Grace. Only a miracle will prove her innocence, but the joining of two lonely hearts may be their saving grace.
". . . four stories from four wonderful authors about the unpredictability of life, the amazingness of the Lord, and the wonderful ways He works within our lives to find that special someone He's picked out for us." ùCBA Retailers + Resources
Rafe Kincaid has spent years keeping his family's cattle ranch going, all without help from his two younger brothers, who fled the ranch--and Rafe's controlling ways--as soon as they were able. He's haunted by one terrible day at the cave on a far-flung corner of the Kincaid property, a day that changed his life forever. Ready to put the past behind him, he plans to visit the cave one final time. He sure doesn't expect to find a young woman trapped in one of the tunnels--or to be forced to kiss her!
Rafe is more intrigued by Julia than any woman he's ever known, but how can he overlook her fascination with the cave he despises? And when his developing relationship with Julia threatens his chance at reconciliation with his brothers, will he be forced to choose between the family bonds that could restore his trust and the love that could heal his heart?
Shannon Wilde is the middle sister--and the one who loves animals. She's established her own homestead and is raising sheep for their wool. Things are going fine...until Shannon gets swept over a cliff by Matthew Tucker!
Tucker seizes every opportunity to get away from civilization, but one particular walk in the woods ends with him sprinting away from an angry grizzly and plunging into a raging river, accidentally taking Shannon Wilde with him. Their adventure in the wilderness results in the solitary mountain man finding himself hitched to a young woman with a passel of relatives, a homestead, and a flock of sheep to care for.
As Tucker and Shannon learn to live with each other, strange things begin to happen on Shannon's land. Someone clearly wants to drive her off, but whoever it is apparently didn't count on Tucker. Trying to scare Matthew Tucker just makes him mad--and trying to hurt the woman he's falling in love with sets off something even he never expected.
Big John Conroy is a Texas Ranger asked by a friend to assist Carrie. He catches up to Carrie and her brother Isaac and races away from a dangerous man who will stop at nothing to make the beautiful young woman his wife. Soon Big John's feelings for Carrie turn to more than simply protective, and Carrie finally feels that she's in the presence of a man she can respect--something she's never known. Fans of Mary's The Kincaid Brides and Trouble in Texas series will enjoy catching up with those characters.
Burned out, exhausted, and disillusioned, Jake Hanson hits the road. He empties his bank accounts and cuts all ties with everyone he knows. Searching for meaning, he buys a deserted Victorian mansion ten miles from civilization in South Dakota and determines to live off the land.
Emily isn’t looking for a man, and she certainly isn’t looking for more responsibility. Since her parents died, she’s been running the family ranch and raising her younger sister alone. She has plenty to keep her busy. So when she finds a stranger hiding out in the house next door, why can’t she just let him be?
When their worlds collide, will their inexplicable attraction draw Jake and Emily together or will their circumstances force them apart forever?
"I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being." Ephesians 3:16
#1: The Advent Bride
Melanie Douglas is alone on the Nebraska plains, teaching school to get by. She finds a unique box with hidden drawers to use over the advent season to engage a young boy in his schooling. When Henry O’Keeffe sees a positive change in his son, he has to see for himself what this new teacher is doing.
Don't be late! Watch for all 12 stories:
Available Now - #1: The Advent Bride
Available Now - #2: The Nutcraker Bride
Available Now - #3: The Evergreen Bride
Available Now - #4: The Gift-Wrapped Bride
Available Now - #5: The Yuletide Bride
Available Now - #6: The Gingerbread Bride
Available Now - #7: The Nativity Bride
Available Now - #8: The Christmas Tree Bride
Available Now - #9: The Festive Bride
Available Now - #10: The Christmas Star Bride
Available Now - #11: The Snowbound Bride
Available Now - #12: The Fruitcake Bride
...have yourself a Cozy Little Christmas!
Kylie Wilde is the youngest sister--and the most civilized. Her older sisters might be happy dressing in trousers and posing as men, but Kylie has grown her hair long and wears skirts every chance she gets. It's a risk--they are homesteading using the special exemptions they earned serving in the Civil War as "boys"--but Kylie plans to make the most of the years before she can sell her property and return to the luxuries of life back East.
Local land agent Aaron Masterson is fascinated with Kylie from the moment her long hair falls from her cap. But now that he knows her secret, can he in good conscience defraud the U.S. government? And when someone tries to force Kylie off her land, does he have any hope of convincing her that marrying him and settling on the frontier is the better option for her future?
"Another great laugh-out-loud historical romance with memorable characters who have charm, style, grace, and a bit of mischief."
--RT Book Reviews on In Too Deep
"Connealy's style is fast-paced and spritely and sure to keep drawing fans."
"With her trademark humor, Connealy weaves a delightful tale that is sure to please her fans and win new readers."
--Library Journal on Over the Edge
She’s reckless spitfire and, thanks to her, he’s a wreck . . .
Maisy Place didn’t mean for Ryan to come to any harm. She was just looking for a quiet space to nurse her wounded pride after he’d hurt her feelings. But then she wandered onto Ryan’s property and into a heap of trouble. Ryan rescued her from a charging grizzly only to find himself with serious breaks and bruises.
Maisy sheepishly agrees when her father insists that she nurse the wounded Ryan back to health as penance. And when his ranch hand leaves him high-and-dry just weeks before a critical cattle sale, Maisy steps in to help. Her cowboy-like ways that have always driven him crazy may ultimately prove to be his salvation . . . and pave the way to their romance.
"Nobody tugs a heart or a smile quite like Mary Connealy . . . she is a master storyteller who leaves her readers both breathless . . . and breathless for more." —Julie Lessman, award-winning author of The Daughters of Boston (on "Winter Wedding Bells" in A Bride for All Seasons)
“Christian novelist Connealy writes to tickle the funny bone and tease heartstrings.” —Publishers Weekly
When Cimarron ranch patriarch Chance Boden is caught in an avalanche, the quick actions of hired hand Heath Kincaid save him. Badly injured, Chance demands that his will be read and its conditions be enforced immediately.
Without anyone else to serve as a witness, Heath is pressed into reading the will. If Justin, Sadie, and Cole Boden don't live and work at home for the entire year, the ranch will go to their low-down cousin Mike.
Then Heath discovers the avalanche was a murder attempt, and more danger might follow. Deeply involved with the family, Heath's desire to protect Sadie goes far beyond friendship. The danger keeps them close together, and their feelings grow until being apart is the last thing on their minds.
In the small town of Dry Gulch, Texas, a good-hearted busybody just can't keep herself from surreptitiously trying to match up women in dire straits with men of good character she hopes can help them. How is she to know she's also giving each couple a little nudge toward love?
A Cowboy Unmatched
Neill isn't sure who hired him to repair Clara's roof--he only knows Clara desperately needs his help. Can he convince this stubborn widow to let down her guard and take another chance on love?
An Unforeseen Match
Hoping to earn an honest wage on his way to the land rush, Clayton ends up on Grace's doorstep, lured by a classified ad. He may have signed on for more than he expected though--and he may have found the one woman who can keep him from moving on.
No Match for Love
Andrew can't fathom how refined Lucy ended up as the caretaker to his dotty aunt, and somehow her arrival has prompted even more bizarre occurrences around the ranch. When they join forces to unearth the truth, will the attraction between Andrew and Lucy develop into more?
Meeting Her Match
When the tables are turned and a tenderhearted meddler becomes the beneficiary of a matchmaking scheme, her world is turned upside down. As her entire life changes, will she finally be able to tell the banker's son how much she cares for him?
David’s convinced he’s not long for the world. He needs someone to mother his boys when he’s gone—nothing more. Can plucky Irish Megan convince him to work at living instead of dying?
"Nobody tugs a heart or a smile quite like Mary Connealy, and in Winter Wedding Bells she tugs a tear or two as well! With an achingly tender love story that will lift your spirits—and your heart—Mary Connealy proves once again she is a master storyteller who leaves her readers both breathless . . . and breathless for more.” —Julie Lessman, award-winning author of The Daughters of Boston and Winds of Change series
“Every character Mary Connealy draws with her pen comes to life. She has a way of dropping these characters into difficult situations, and she takes us on their often humorous and nail-biting journey as they find their way out. Connealy unites two people you never think will get together, but can’t help but hope they will.” —Lorna Seilstad, author of When Love Calls
Mary Connealy writes romantic comedy with cowboys. She is a Carol Award winner, and a Rita, Christy, and Inspirational Reader's Choice finalist. She is the author of the best-selling Kincaid Brides Series: Out of Control, In Too Deep, Over the Edge, Lassoed in Texas Trilogy, Montana Marriages Trilogy, and Sophie's Daughters Trilogy. Mary is married to a Nebraska rancher and has four grown daughters and two spectacular grandchildren.
in Mary Connealy's Latest
Bailey Wilde is one of the best new ranchers in the West. She's been living disguised as a man for a while, but when Gage Coulter comes to drive her off her homestead, he quickly realizes he's dealing with a woman--a very tough, very intriguing woman at that.
Gage is an honest man, but he didn't make his fortune being weak. He won't break the law, but he'll push as hard as he can within it. Five thousand acres of his best range land is lost to him because Bailey's homestead is located right across the only suitable entrance to a canyon full of lush grass. Gage has to regain access to his land--and he's got to go through Bailey to do it.
Spending a winter alone has a way of making a person crave some human contact. In a moment of weakness, Bailey agrees to a wild plan Gage concocts. Can these two independent, life-toughened homesteaders loosen up enough to earn each other's respect--and maybe find love in
Collection Offers Love and Laughs
Four top historical romance novelists team up in this new collection to offer stories of love and romance with a twist of humor. In Karen Witemeyer's "The Husband Maneuver," Marietta Hawkins decides to grab the reins when the ranch foreman she loves seems to be leaving forever. Regina Jennings offers "Her Dearly Unintended," where friends stranded by a rising river pretend to be newlyweds when a dangerous stranger arrives.
Mary Connealy's "Runaway Bride" finds a Texas ranger getting more than he expected when he rescues a young woman fleeing a dangerous arranged marriage. And Melissa Jagears' "Engaging the Competition" finds a young woman forced to assist the man she's sparred with for so long after an accident leaves him helpless. Each tale is a fun blend of history and romance that will delight readers.
Amanda Star’s father always wanted her to come into the family business, and run the majestic old Star Inn with him but she had bigger plans. She’s a high-powered executive in the multi-national Halston hotel chain. One more promotion—which she expects to get by Christmas—will make her the youngest vice president in Halston history and she’s got her sights set on the CEO job.
Then she inherits the Star Inn. With no time to be away from her job, she impatiently rushes home to list the beautiful old bed and breakfast for sale. Now that she’s here she’s swamped with sweet memories and keen regret. Her father has made the inn a safe haven where weary travelers can get away from their hectic lives, and Amanda, working 10-hour days and living on coffee and antacids, desperately needs that safe haven.
As Amanda struggles against the lure of home, she also is reunited with an old classmate: Anthony Carter, a handyman with a guarded heart. Hurt before by a woman who saw his contentment and pleasure in building and living on his own land as a lack of ambition, Cart reluctantly finds himself drawn to a woman who wants so much more than a man with callused hands and sawdust in his hair. A woman who came home for Christmas and badly needs to stay. With the help of Angel Rafferty, the front desk clerk and a lifelong friend of Amanda’s parents, can Cart help Amanda realize the hospitality industry is far more than spreadsheets and bottom lines in time for Christmas?
The Boden clan thought their problems had ended with the death of a dangerous enemy, but have they truly uncovered the real plot to take their New Mexico ranch? Rancher Justin Boden is now in charge. He is normally an unshakable and rugged man, but with his brother, Cole, shot and in mortal danger, even a tough man faces doubts. And it doesn't help that Angie DuPree, the assistant to the doctor trying to save Cole, is as distracting a woman as Justin ever laid eyes on.
With her and the doc's timely skills, Cole looks to be on the mend, and Justin and the rest of the Bodens can turn their attention back to the dangers facing them. It's clear now that everything that's occurred is part of a much bigger plot that could date back to a decades-old secret. Can they uncover all the pieces before danger closes in on them, or is the threat to the ranch even bigger than any of the Bodens could imagine?
Chance doesn't want to work for anyone, but Frank's beautiful daughter, Veronica, gives him reason to delay buying his own holdings. With winter coming, no home in which to live, and Veronica's offer to care for young Cole while Chance learns the ways of ranching in the desert, Chance has little choice but to accept the Chastains' offer to stay on.
When Frank is attacked, his last wish is that Chance marry his daughter, but after dealing with his in-laws, Chance doesn't want anyone coming between him and his son. Then, before Frank dies, his precarious hold on the land he received as part of an old Spanish Land Grant forces him to make a desperate choice to save Veronica's inheritance--and also gives the men who attacked Frank a reason to come after his legacy.
When an explosion kills men and damages the CR Mining Company, the Bodens realize their troubles are not behind them as they thought. Shadowy forces are still working against them.
Cole Boden finds himself caught between missing his time back East and all that New Mexico offers. Sure he fights with his siblings now and then, but he does care for them. He enjoys running the mine and, when he's honest, he admits that Melanie Blake captures his interest in a way no other woman ever has.
Melanie has been a friend to the Bodens forever. A cowgirl who is more comfortable with horses and lassoes than people, she never expected to find herself falling for someone. Particularly for refined Cole Boden, a Harvard graduate who may not stay long at the ranch. She's determined, however, to help the Bodens finally put an end to the danger that's threatened all of them. But will putting herself in harm's way be more dangerous than anyone expected?
Candy Cane Christmas by Laura Trentham
Christmas has come to Cottonbloom for two rebel hearts. Jeremy Whitehurst has tried to leave his bad-boy behavior and tarnished image behind in Alabama for a fresh start in Cottonbloom, Louisiana. Unfortunately, trouble has dogged him across state lines. One rebellious summer dented Kayla Redmond’s carefree innocence. Now her focus is on completing her associate’s degree for bookkeeping, and no one is going to derail her plans. Will one reckless Christmas night and some time spent in the back of a cop car be the best present Jeremy’s ever been given?
Silent Night, Star-Lit Night by Ruth Logan Herne
More Grinch than grace, cowboy Jed Taylor is determined that his best friend’s very pregnant widow won't make the long trek home for Christmas alone, but when a blizzard lands them at a town hunkered down to ride out the unexpected storm, they begin to see that facing this once-dreaded Christmas together could be the very best way of all.
Do You Hear What I Hear? by Margaret Brownley
This holiday season, it will take the storm of the century, one stage-struck young boy, a certain meddling “angel”—and even a cranky cat—to convince two bruised hearts that second chances can lead to the love of a lifetime.
Room at the Inn for Christmas by Mary Connealy
When Amanda Star inherits her family’s historic inn at Christmas, she takes one more trip back home to put the beautiful old bed and breakfast up for sale and runs into an old friend – and crush – Anthony Cart. Surrounded by memories of warmth and laughter, tinsel and holly, can Cart help Amanda realize the hospitality industry is far more than spreadsheets and bottom lines in time for Christmas?
California’s gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep. Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.
Then she meets Michael Hosea, a man who seeks his Father’s heart in everything. Michael obeys God’s call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Slowly, day by day, he defies Angel’s every bitter expectation, until despite her resistance, her frozen heart begins to thaw.
But with her unexpected softening comes overwhelming feelings of unworthiness and fear. And so Angel runs. Back to the darkness, away from her husband’s pursuing love, terrified of the truth she no longer can deny: Her final healing must come from the One who loves her even more than Michael does…the One who will never let her go.
A powerful retelling of the story of Gomer and Hosea, Redeeming Love is a life-changing story of God’s unconditional, redemptive, all-consuming love.
Includes a six-part reading group guide!
In this compilation of the five books in the best-selling Lineage of Grace series by Francine Rivers, we meet the five women whom God chose—Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary. Each was faced with extraordinary—even scandalous—challenges. Each took great personal risk to fulfill her calling. Each was destined to play a key role in the lineage of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World.
The first book in the bestselling Mark of the Lion series, A Voice in the Wind brings readers back to the first century and introduces them to a character they will never forget—Hadassah. Torn by her love for a handsome aristocrat, this young slave girl clings to her faith in the living God for deliverance from the forces of decadent Rome.
#2 An Echo in the Darkness: Turning away from the opulence of Rome, Marcus is led by a whispering voice from the past into a journey that could set him free from the darkness of his soul.
The dream of a farmstead and a good life in America had led Roald and Inegborg Bjorklund to cross the Atlantic and pioneer the virgin prairie of Dakota Territory. But Roald's tragic disappearance in a winter storm had turned Ingeborg's dreams into a living nightmare. Against nearly impossible circumstances and overwhelming grief, she struggles to keep the farm and her family together. Finally, with the coming of spring and the arrival of Roald's distant cousin to temporarily take over the heavy fieldwork, Ingeborg is definitely on the mend after the long winter of darkness of both her soul and mind. Able to return to her care of the children and the soddy, Ingeborg cannot ignore the joy that Haaken brings to their lives or the attraction she begins to feel toward him. When Roald's brother from Norway also arrives to help her, things become very complicated around the simple prairie dwelling! He Reminded Her of a Viking of Old. Could He Be Persuaded to Stay?
Bandit troubles intensify as Caleb Bender's family tries to settle into their new life in 1920s Paradise Valley. When El Pantera kidnaps Rachel and leaves her brother, Aaron, for dead, Jake Weaver and the Mexican native Domingo pursue the bandit leader to his mountain stronghold in a hopeless rescue attempt. Jake and Domingo manage to escape with Rachel, with the bandits hot on their trail. In a desperate attempt to avoid recapture, Domingo puts himself squarely in harm's way, giving Jake and Rachel time to get away. This is not the quiet life Caleb Bender envisioned when he led his family out of Ohio. What is a father to make of his daughter's obvious affection for a man outside the fold? And how will a pacifist Amishman like Caleb respond to the events that threaten his family and their way of life?
-Rosslyn Elliot, author of Fairer Than Morning and Sweeter Than Birdsong
"A Bride for Keeps treats readers to an engaging, prairie romance...delivering a heartwarming, satisfying read."
-Maggie Brendan, CBA bestselling author of The Heart of the West and The Blue Willow Brides series.
"Melissa Jagears has penned a tender tale of a mail-order bride who takes both the groom--and herself--by surprise when love comes softly...quietly... to heal their broken hearts."
-Julie Lessman, author of Love at any Cost
"A Bride for Keeps is just beautiful. It put me in mind of Janette Oke's sweet prairie romances but with a bit more edge, which I found compelling...I loved it."
-Mary Connealy, author of Fired Up
Everett Cline will never humiliate himself by seeking a mail-order bride. Not again. He's already been jilted by three mail-order brides and figures a wife just isn't in his future. However, a well-meaning neighbor hasn't given up on seeing him settled, so she goes behind his back to bring yet another woman to town for him.
Julia Lockwood has never been anything more than a pretty pawn for her father or a business acquisition for her former fiance. A mail-order marriage in faraway Kansas is a last resort, but she'll do anything to leave her life in Massachusetts and the heartbreak she's experienced there.
Although Everett doesn't see how a beautiful, cultured woman like Julia could be happy sharing his simple life, he could really use a helpmate on his homestead. Determined to prove she's more than just a pretty face, Julia agrees to a marriage in name only. Faced with the harsh realities of life on the prairie and hesitant to explore the tentative feelings growing between them, can Everett and Julia ever let each other in long enough to fall in love?
#1 A Voice in the Wind: Torn by her love for a handsome aristocrat, a young slave girl clings to her faith in the living God for deliverance from the forces of decadent Rome.
#2 An Echo in the Darkness: Turning away from the opulence of Rome, Marcus is led by a whispering voice from the past into a journey that could set him free from the darkness of his soul.
#3 As Sure As the Dawn: Atretes. German warrior. Revered gladiator. He won his freedom through his fierceness . . . but his life is about to change forever.
It had taken four long, difficult years to tame the virgin prairie of Dakota Territory. Looking back through all the heartache and the body-breaking labor, Ingeborg Bjorkland knew that God had been with them every step of the way. Dreams that had turned into veritable nightmares had been reshaped with the promise of a new day rising, and her marriage to Haaken had been its sure sign.Hjelmer travels west to work on the railroad, and after sending only one letter to Penny, who has agreed to wait for him, he is not heard from again. As the months pass, Penny is pursued by other eligible suitors, and her love for Hjelmer is sorely tried. Will he ever return to keep his promise? America's westward expansion continues, bringing the railroad to their area. Before them lies the challenge of proving up their homesteads, developing a sense of community, building wooden barns and houses, a schoolhouse and a church, a grain elevator and store.
No one steps on Archer land. Not if they value their life. But when Meredith Hayes overhears a lethal plot to burn the Archer brothers off their ranch, a twelve-year-old debt compels her to take the risk.
Fourteen years of constant vigilance hardens a man. Yet when Travis Archer confronts a female trespasser with the same vivid blue eyes as the courageous young girl he once aided, he can't bring himself to send her away. And when an act of sacrifice leaves her injured and her reputation in shreds, gratitude and guilt send him riding to her rescue once again.
Four brothers. Four straws. One bride. Despite the fact that Travis is no longer the gallant youth Meredith once dreamed about, she determines to stand by his side against the enemy that threatens them both. But will love ever be hers? Or will Travis always see her merely as a short-straw bride?
Amish pacifism is sorely tested in the Paradise Valley settlement in the 1920s. When an army of bandits descends on them, the Amish are saved by the last-minute arrival of government troops. But they soon learn that soldiers can be as cruel as the bandits themselves. Then a bishop travels to Mexico, and Caleb's daughters are finally able to marry, though the ban still looms for Miriam even as her beloved Domingo decides he must go off to fight in the coming war. As Caleb's frail hope of peace and freedom in Mexico slips away, he is left to ponder the question: In times of trouble, on whom should we rely?
But Britta's other great love is for the violin, and her talent is recognized by Brenton Maltese, a conductor from England. He proposes she accept the coveted first chair position in his orchestra...and also his hand in marriage. At a crossroads, Britta must determine what her heart truly longs for--and if she's willing to fight for it.
Jem Wheeler has always been a survivor. He just wants to make a fresh start in Colorado Springs after the loss of his wife. But then he happens upon a young mute woman being sold off to the highest bidder. He wasn't looking for a mail-order bride. He wasn't looking to rescue anyone either. But desperate circumstances can drive a good man to do things he hadn't planned on doing...
When Jem steps into Annie's life, she's not expecting anyone to save her. Mute from birth, she's just using all her wits to survive. All she's ever really wanted is a family of her own. For someone to see her. To look at her long enough to hear the things she can't say.
Can Annie finally break through the silence to win Jem's heart?
Sweet Historical Western Romance
A Mail-Order Bride Novel
Each book in The Brides Series can be read as a stand-alone novel, but reading in order will provide a more complete reading experience.
THE BRIDES SERIESThe Unexpected Bride
Sleigh Bells & Mistletoe
The Bartered Bride
Only the Heart Knows
Jem took the apple core from his daughter and passed her one of the remaining crackers with a piece of cheese on it. Mae munched that down and looked to him immediately for another, the last one.
He gave it to her, then showed her his empty hands.
She frowned. "More?"
"No more," Jem said, and showed her his empty hands again, making a bigger gesture out of it, as if the little girl was accusing him of hiding some.
If Annie weren't so intent on eating her share of cheese and crackers she might have smiled at the sight of them, one of the most dangerous men she'd ever seen sitting side by side with that tiny little girl. They made quite a mismatched pair.
Mae looked over at Annie, at the last cracker in her hand and the last bit of cheese.
Annie gulped down the mouthful she was chewing. She looked down at the last of her meal and back at the little girl. To her shame, she didn't want to give up her last cracker. She could barely remember the last meal she'd eaten.
"That's Annie's food," Jem admonished the little girl. "You've had yours."
Mae bit her lip. She glanced down at her lap, then back at Annie again.
I can share, Annie attempted to tell Mae with her eyes alone. She snapped her cracker in half--simply unable to bear parting with the whole thing--and passed it across to the little girl. Mae took it and popped the whole thing in her mouth, making Annie smile.
"Mae!" her father said.
She looked at him wide-eyed, her mouth full of cracker. "Whaf dafdda?" she said, muffled, spraying a few cracker crumbs onto his trousers.
He closed his eyes briefly and brushed them off. "You didn't have to give her any," he said to Annie, "but thanks."
Annie grunted, her way of saying she didn't mind that much. She looked down quickly and finished her last bit of food. The crackers had been crispy and the cheese silky and smooth. They'd tasted like heaven.
"You must be thirsty," he said. "Do you mind sharing?"
She shook her head and automatically lifted two fingers.
"Two's no?" he asked.
She nodded, pleased, and lifted one finger. She'd grown up sending signals through the floor of the Ruskins' house, one stomp for yes, two for no. It came natural as rain now.
"And one's yes," he said, catching on quick.
Annie drank deep when he passed her the flask of water, amazed he'd let her drink from it. She tried her best to pour it down her throat without touching her lips to the flask, so he wouldn't regret giving it to someone so dirty. She wished she could tell him thanks, but after Mae had her fill and he took his own swallow, he was back under his hat, likely going over the events of the day.
How he'd stuck himself with her.
How he probably regretted even stepping off the train at the last stop.
She couldn't say she blamed him.
She hadn't much wanted to marry a stranger herself.