Adrienne deWolfe and “His Wicked Dream”


Adrienne will be awarding the following to random commenters:

  • a $20 Amazon Gift Card
  • a $15 Amazon Gift Card
  • a TIN-STARS AND TROUBLEMAKERS (4 full-length ebooks in a box set by best-selling Western Historical Romance authors Adrienne deWolfe, Patricia Rice, Sharon Ihle, and Patricia Hagan
  • a copy of the best-selling WILD TEXAS NIGHTS series by Adrienne deWolfe (3 books, total)
  • a copy of the award-winning VELVET LIES series by Adrienne deWolfe (ebooks 1-3) .

Click on the banner above to follow the tour and increase your chances of winning! Click here for the Rafflecopter!

About His Wicked Dream

Haunted by scandal, Eden Mallory is determined to start over in a small Kentucky town.  But she won’t soon forget the sexy, rugged doctor who rescued her from an outlaw, then rode off into the storm.

After losing his kid-brother to consumption, Dr. Michael Jones is obsessed with saving lives. He has no room for love or a wife. But the nights are lonely, and Eden haunts his dreams.

When Eden becomes his backdoor neighbor, she turns his world upside-down with her unconventional healing skills and sweet temptations.  Then outlaws return, forcing Michael to confront his past if he is to save the most precious life of all.


Velvet Lies Series

Wild Texas Nights Series

The Secrets to Getting Your Romance Novel Published (Series)

Tin-Stars and Troublemakers

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The Dinner Guest 

“What the devil do you think you’re doing?

Cover_HisWickedDreamEden spun guiltily at that rumble of ire. She hadn’t heard Michael come down the hall. In fact, she hadn’t heard much of anything but the shrieking of her conscience and the hammering of her heart. Spying Michael’s medical books high on the shelves in the family parlor had seemed like the answer to her prayers. But guilt had made her sneak. How could she explain her interest in medical research without revealing her secret?

“M-Michael.” Thunder shook the walls, or did that quaking come from Michael’s boots? “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to pry—”

“Of course you meant to pry. Prying is what females do best.”

He snatched the volume from her hand, and Eden winced. Looming over her, all muscle and menace, he practically steamed. She felt his heat like a furnace blast, flushing her skin and melting her nerves into a puddle.

“I’m sorry,” she repeated. Good heavens, what had put him in a foul mood this time? “I was just curious. About, um, respiration.”

“This volume is clearly marked A through H. Respiration would be in another volume entirely.”

“Yes, but bronchial inflammation—”

“Are you ill?”

Her pulse tripped as his gaze swept to her bodice. How could eyes so ice-blue one moment burn so scintillatingly hot the next?

She cleared her throat. “No. Nothing like that. I was just—”

His gaze snapped back to her face. “Then kindly refrain from snooping.”

She managed to gulp a breath. A sudden suspicion, one having to do with Sera and matchmaking, crept through Eden’s mind.  As much as her reluctant host deserved a tongue lashing, Eden had to concede that Sera was the real culprit:  she did nothing but try to marry Michael off.

Eden’s chin raised a notch. Well, it’s high time Michael Jones learns that Eden Mallory isn’t like all the other spinsters in this town.

She mustered the shreds of her decorum. “I completely understand your upset, Michael. If I’d come home after a long day’s work and discovered I was expected to entertain, I’d be put out too. If you prefer, I’ll leave.”

“That won’t be necessary. You’re my sister’s guest.”

And clearly unwelcome by you.

She told herself her hurt was ridiculous. She didn’t care one whit for Michael.  Sera was the one she loved. “I don’t want to cause tension between you and Sera.”

“Sera causes tension between me and Sera.”

“Yes, well… I’m sure she believes she’s acting in your best interests.”

“By scheming to end my bachelorhood?”

Eden fidgeted. He did have a point.

“Dinner doesn’t have to be difficult,” she said, opting for a topic change. “Even though you don’t like me—”

“Who told you that?”

“Well . . . You did. Or rather, you do. Whenever you snap.”

“You shouldn’t take everything so personally.”

Did he actually mean to say that he liked her?

She had trouble hinging her jaw closed. “Well, that may be. But you have to admit, you’ve been short with me since the first day we met.”

“Are you asking me to apologize?”

“Well, no, I…” She caught herself.  Why was she trying so hard to appease the cuss?  “May I speak frankly?”

“When do you not?”

Ooh. Insufferable man.

“Honestly, Michael, you would try the patience of a saint. Contrary to what you might think, I don’t spend my nights dreaming up schemes to make you court me.”


“Heaven forbid. Why on earth would I waste a perfectly pleasant evening with a man who’s so unpleasant?”

“The question does give one pause.”

Her irritation climbed another notch. “You see? That’s precisely what I’m talking about. Rather than own up to your failings like a proper gentleman, you resort to sarcasm.  You’re as high-handed as a tyrant.  And you’re more prickly than a porcupine!”

“I see.” He folded his arms across his chest. “Anything else you’d like to share before dinner?”

Her hands flew to her hips. “Well, if you must know, I find you completely lacking in humor!”

His laughter startled her. It was a warm, rich, rumble of mirth, so utterly masculine and thoroughly frustrating, she wanted to smack him.

“That wasn’t supposed to be funny!”

“My dear Eden, are you certain you aren’t the one lacking in humor?”

About the Author

Adrienne deWolfe_AuthorAdrienne deWolfe is a #1 best-selling author and the recipient of 48 writing awards, including the Best Historical Romance of the Year for Texas Wildcat (Book 3, Wild Texas Nights) and Doubleday’s Book of the Month Selection for His Wicked Dream (Book 2, Velvet Lies.)  Adrienne is excited to announce that she will be donating a portion of her royalties from the Velvet Lies Series to urban reforestation efforts.

Fascinated by all things mystical, Adrienne writes a weekly blog about dragons, magic, and the paranormal at to help her research her upcoming paranormal romance series. She also writes a weekly blog featuring tips about the business of writing. She enjoys mentoring aspiring authors and offers professional story critiques with her book coaching services.


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Rue Allyn and “One Day’s Loving”

The Shy Heroine

I love series books, especially when a family (yes, metaphorical families are fine) is involved. What I don’t like is when every family member feels like the same person with a slightly different appearance. You know the type—they talk alike, walk alike, even make love alike. Every man is the MOST handsome and every woman is the BRIGHTEST beauty. I don’t know a single family where all the relations are exactly alike.

When I set out to write my Wildfire Love series about the Alden sisters of Boston the first two books, One Moment’s Pleasure and One Night’s Desire, came easily because Edith (the oldest) and Kiera (the middle child) were both bold. Edith was more of a planner than Kiera and a bit less of a risk taker. Edith was attractive, but not beautiful. She knew how to present herself. Kiera never had to worry about her appearance. She was stunning in a potato sack. These women let me know right up front who they were and what they wanted.

roses2Not so with their youngest sister Persephone Mae. As the youngest, she’d always been sheltered and protected by her siblings. She grew up shy and unassuming and a bit on the dowdy side. When circumstances leave her on her own to deal with the disasters caused by her grandfather’s will, she’s forced to come out of hiding. But getting her there wasn’t easy.

Have you ever dealt with an extremely shy person? Someone who is too awkward and/or ignorant to be able to express what he/she wants. Someone who lacks the experience and confidence to act assertively. I feel for the shy ones in life because all too often they are ignored or derided and they don’t even realize they don’t have to put up with ill treatment.

Because she’d been sheltered all her life, Mae had no idea what she was capable of. For her, simply traveling from her home to the attorney’s office for the reading of the will was a challenge. She went, despite her worries. Once I got her out of the house, I wouldn’t let her go back to hiding until she recognized that a shy, retiring life wasn’t what she wanted or needed. I won’t spoil all the fun by telling you how Mae changes her life. I will tell you that despite all the difficulty of dealing with a shy heroine, I think she’s the most courageous of the three Alden sisters. She is absolutely not a mirror image of her siblings, but is her own woman.

Please leave a comment and let me know if you like heroines who are shy, feisty or somewhere in between.

If you’d like to know more about Mae and discover the answers to some of the questions raised here you may read a longer excerpt at

One Day’s Loving will be released on November 18, 2013 and is the third book in the Wildfire Love Series. Freedom or love? Courage or comfort? Unless Mae Alden meets the terms of her grandfather’s outrageous last testament she will lose everything. She’s ready to sacrifice all creature comforts to preserve her principles, but is she willing to lose her one chance at love?


You can find the first two books of the series here, or you may pre-order One Day’s Loving here.

About the Author

HPIM0613.JPGAuthor of historical, contemporary, and erotic romances, Rue Allyn fell in love with happily ever after the day she heard her first story. She is deliriously married to her sweetheart of many years and loves to hear from readers about their favorite books and real life adventures.


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Her Hottest Heroes: 4 Historical Romances by Victoria Lynne

Warning: This title is intended for readers over the age of 18 as it contains adult sexual situations and/or adult language, and may be considered offensive to some readers.


(Click banner for links to the other tour stops.)

Her Hottest Heroes

(Historical Romance Boxed Set)

by Victoria Lynne

Historical (Regency) Western Romance 

FOUR of Victoria Lynne’s hottest heroes brought together in one great, money-saving bundle. Each book is a full-length novel.

Warning: This title is intended for readers over the age of 18 as it contains adult sexual situations and/or adult language, and may be considered offensive to some readers.


An act of heroism leaves Morgan St. James, Viscount Sinclair, scarred for life. Rake turned recluse, he withdraws into his sheltered estate, away from the busy whirl of London society. There he remains until Julia Prentisse approaches him with a scandalous offer: if he marries her and protects her from her uncle, she will help him capture the arsonist who ruined his life.

“A smoldering Victorian era romance.” –Booklist

A Romantic Times “Top Pick” Nominated for their prestigious “Best Historical Romance”


When Nicholas DuVall, rakehell Earl of Barrington, witnesses Katya Alexander pick the pocket of a fellow passenger, her skill and audacity captivate him. He enlists her help to retrieve a priceless family scroll, unaware that an age-old family feud has made them mortal enemies, and that his beautiful thief has secrets to burn.

“A wild ride of an adventure romance destined to keep you reading all night. Simmering with sexual tension and the perfect amount of suspense.” –Romantic Times


Treachery destroys Captain Cole McRae’s ship and most of his crew. Now he’s determined to take Devon Blake, British beauty and convicted spy, to the gallows. Her wild attempts at escape only fire his fury, until their daring race through enemy territory ignites a passion stronger than vengeance.

Nominated for two RITA Awards.

“A pure delight. Plenty of suspense, and beautifully drawn characters.” -Rendezvous


Smooth-talking gambler Jake Moran finds himself volunteering to escort the notorious Outlaw Annie, along with the ugliest cat he’s ever seen, to Cooperton, Colorado. Once Jake’s roped in and they hit the trail, nothing prepares him for the final showdown as he tries to tame the wildest woman in the west.

“Extremely well-written, faced-paced, and funny, Chasing Rainbows is a pot of gold from this talented, up-and-coming author. One for your keeper shelf.” – Romantic Times 


Available at


About the Author

Victoria Lynne is the author of five historical romance novels. She’s received two RITA Award nominations, and has consistently earned Romantic Times’ “Top Pick” award. She lives in Vermont with her husband, two children, and one very playful mutt.


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Rue Allyn: Photography in the Old West + GIVEAWAY

Rue is offering two chances to win a free digital copy of One Night’s Desire. See contest details below.

Susana, thank you very much for inviting me to visit with your followers today to tell them a little about my newest release, One Night’s Desire, and some factoids about nature photography in the late nineteenth century.

A visit to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks in 2008 with a friend who is a superior photographer inspired an important detail of One Night’s Desire. Because I began to share my friend’s interest in photography (although I lack her skill) I started to look into the source of many of iconic images associated with the parks. I discovered that the expeditionary force responsible for mapping and recording the details of the Yellowstone area included a photographer by the name of William Henry Jackson. His pictures are the first of the area and are the foundation for many of those iconic images. You can read about his adventures and see copies of his photographs in Bob Blair’s compilation “The Pioneer Photographer.” The difficulties of transporting photographic equipment to remote locations and the complexities of timing exposures for just the right light, are just two of the small struggles Jackson dealt with in addition to the rigors of a years long expedition in country where survival was risky at best. One story in particular about Jackson balancing his equipment on a cliff side to capture an especially compelling image of a waterfall was especially inspiring. I was so moved that I repeated as much of the action of that story as I could in One Night’s Desire. With digital cameras, we don’t have half the struggle to create photographs that Jackson had. His efforts were truly heroic and contributed greatly to the creation of Yellowstone as a national park. I owe him not only for the inspiration he gave to my story but for the images and places that he preserved.

Giveaway: Two Chances to Win a Free Download of One Night’s Desire.

  1. Leave a comment about this post, photography, the national parks, or any topic you prefer and/or
  2. Leave a review of one of my currently available books at Amazon. Just check my author page for book details.

I’ll be collecting entries throughout the entire One Night’s Desire release tour (June 13 – July 29, the  schedule of appearances can be found here. The winner will be announced July 31st on my blog.

About One Night’s Desire

roses2A WOMAN ON THE RUN: Rustlers, claim jumpers and fire, nothing will stop Kiera Alden from reuniting her family. But an accusation of murder threatens her dreams and sets Marshall Evrett Quinn on her trail. She may be able to escape prison bars and eventually prove her innocence, but she can’t escape Quinn’s love.

A LAWMAN IN HOT PURSUIT: Marshall Evrett Quinn is relentless in pursuit of law-breakers, and pretty Kiera Alden is no exception. Clever and courageous, she evades him until a chance encounter turns the tables. Finally he has this elusive desperado under arrest, but success is bittersweet when she captures his heart.




One Night’s Desire and its sister book One Moment’s Pleasure are heavily discounted at Amazon for the entire month of July.

About the Author

????????????Author of historical, contemporary, and erotic romances, Rue Allyn fell in love with happily ever after the day she heard her first story. She is deliriously married to her sweetheart of many years and loves to hear from readers about their favorite books and real life adventures.  Learn more about Rue and her books at


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Meg Mims: Traveling the Transcontinental Railroad + Giveaway

Meg is offering a free digital copy of Double or Nothing for one lucky reader and I’m throwing in a $10 Amazon gift card for another. To enter: leave a comment (and your email address) on this blog entry and then click here to enter the Rafflecopter. The winner will be chosen and notified on April 19th. Good luck!

I love reading historical fiction. I love researching them even more… and the transcontinental railroad is a favorite topic because the first book in my Double Series is a twist of True Grit and Murder on the Orient Express. Double Crossing won the 2012 Spur Award for Best First Novel, and my new release, Double or Nothing, is the sequel. Book two is not set on a train, but incorporates some further information about the New York to San Francisco railroad.

So let’s talk trains! Most people take for granted the highways of today. Over 150 years ago, when gold was first discovered in California, men hoping to get rich traveled to San Francisco via steamships which navigated through the dangerous Panama River and jungle region in Central America. Settlers heading west chose stage coaches, river boats, Conestoga wagons, oxen or horses, which dictated how far one could go—and such trips would often take many months due to weather, Indians and no real roads.

After the ‘war of Rebellion,’ the Union Pacific began laying tracks west from Omaha. They had their own problems with marauding Indians, the Rocky mountains and keeping up the pace (although I’m not certain the AMC series Hell on Wheels is all that accurate). The Central Pacific had far greater obstacles and dangers. Relentless winter storms in the Sierra Nevada mountains stalled the work. Snow sheds were fashioned to keep progress going, and thank goodness for nitroglycerin and the Chinese laborers who gave their lives to build that route. The five-mile-long Summit Tunnel in the Sierra Nevada took 15 months, in fact, to finish. The “race” between the two companies ended at Promontory Point in Utah in May of 1869.

After the Golden Spike ceremony that joined the two lines, travelers could begin in New York and end up in Sacramento within a week or 10 days in good weather. But travel wasn’t easy. The Pullman Palace sleeping cars proved expensive for the average traveler, but were not luxurious by any standard. Station houses with 30-minute meal stops gave way to dining cars within the decade. Indians who had often sabotaged the Union Pacific crews withdrew further north to fight at the Little Big Horn—and eventual defeat after that short-lived victory by the turn of the century. The Western Pacific railroad was also built from Sacramento via Stockton and San Jose to get as close to San Francisco as possible, although many people took a spur railroad to Vallejo and then a ferry across the Bay. Within 25 years, the majority of fruit shipped to the East Coast from California via refrigerated freight cars.

The transcontinental railroad proved to be the biggest fuel for American western expansion. My Double series gives the reader that sense of the west, of adventure and mystery, a touch of romance, and a bit of inspiration as well. Double Crossing is a twist of True Grit and Murder on the Orient Express, while Double or Nothing continues the adventures of Lily and Ace with a twist on The Fugitive.


Endorsed Double Crossing 500 x 750A murder arranged as a suicide…a missing deed…and a bereft daughter whose sheltered world is shattered.

August, 1869: Lily Granville is stunned by her father’s murder. Only one other person knows about a valuable California gold mine deed — both are now missing. Lily heads west on the newly opened transcontinental railroad, determined to track the killer. She soon realizes she is no longer the hunter but the prey.

As things progress from bad to worse, Lily is uncertain who to trust—the China-bound missionary who wants to marry her, or the wandering Texan who offers to protect her … for a price. Will Lily survive the journey and unexpected betrayal?

Click here to see the BOOK VIDEO

DoubleorNothing 500x750 (3)DOUBLE OR NOTHING—BOOK 2

A mysterious explosion. A man framed for murder. A strong woman determined to prove his innocence.

October, 1869: Lily Granville, heiress to a considerable fortune, rebels against her uncle’s strict rules. Ace Diamond, determined to win Lily, invests in a dynamite factory but his success fails to impress her guardian. An explosion in San Francisco, mere hours before Lily elopes with Ace to avoid a forced marriage, sets off a chain of consequences.

When Ace is framed for murder before their wedding night, Lily must find proof to save him from a hangman’s noose. Will she become a widow before a true wife?


About the Author

Meg in ViennaClocks and time play a big part in any late bloomer’s life. And time plays a vital part in every mystery.

Meg Mims is an award-winning author and artist. She writes blended genres – historical, western, adventure, romance, suspense and mystery. Her first book, Double Crossing, won the 2012 Spur Award for Best First Novel from Western Writers of America and  was named a Finalist in the Best Books of 2012 from USA Book News for Fiction: Western.  Double or Nothing is the sequel. Meg has also written two contemporary romance novellas,The Key to Love and Santa Paws — which reached the Amazon Kindle Bestseller list.



I burst into the house. Keeping the flimsy telegram envelope, I dumped half a dozen packages into the maid’s waiting arms. “Where’s Father? I need to speak to him.”

“He’s in the library, Miss Lily. With Mr. Todaro.”

Oh, bother. I didn’t have time to deal with Emil Todaro, my father’s lawyer. He was the last person I wanted to see—but that couldn’t be helped. Thanking Etta, I raced down the hall. Father turned from his roll-top desk, spectacles perched on his thin nose and hands full of rustling papers. Todaro rose from an armchair with a courteous bow. His silver waistcoat buttons strained over his belly and his balding head shone in the sunlight. I forced myself to nod in his direction and then planted a quick kiss on Father’s leathery cheek. The familiar scents of pipe tobacco and bay rum soothed my nervous energy.

“I didn’t expect you back so early, Lily. What is it?”

With an uneasy glance at Todaro, I slipped him the envelope. “The telegraph messenger boy caught me on my way home.” My voice dropped. “It’s from Uncle Harrison.”

Father poked up his wire rims while he pored over the brief message. His shoulders slumped. “I’ll speak plainly, Lily, because Mr. Todaro and I were discussing this earlier. My brother sent word that George Hearst intends to claim the Early Bird mine in a Sacramento court. Harrison believes his business partner never filed the deed. He needs to prove our ownership.”

“Hearst holds an interest in the Comstock Lode, Colonel.” Todaro had perked up, his long knobby fingers forming a steeple. The lawyer resembled an amphibian, along with his deep croak of a voice. “His lawyers are just as ambitious and ruthless in court.”

Father peered over his spectacles. “Yes, but I have the original deed. I didn’t plan to visit California until next month, so we’ll have to move up our trip.”

“Oh!” I clasped my hands, a thrill racing through me. “I’m dying to visit all the shops out there, especially in San Francisco. When do we leave?”

“We? I meant myself and Mr. Todaro.”

I stared at the lawyer, who didn’t conceal a sly smirk. “You cannot leave me behind, Father. I promised to visit Uncle Harrison, and what if I decide to go to China?”

“Lily, I refuse to discuss the matter. This trip is anything but a lark.”

“It’s a grueling two thousand miles on the railroad, Miss Granville. Conditions out west are far too dangerous for a young lady,” Todaro said. “Even with an escort.”

“The new transcontinental line has been operating all summer. Plenty of women have traveled to California. I’ve read the newspaper reports.”

“I’m afraid the Union and Central Pacific cars are not as luxurious as the reports say. You have no idea. The way stations are abominable, for one thing.”

I flashed a smile at him. “I’m ready for adventure. That’s why I’ve considered joining the missionary team with Mr. Mason.”

Father scowled. “You are not leaving Evanston until I give my approval.”

“You mean until you dissuade me from ‘such a ridiculous notion.’”

“Need I remind you of the fourth commandment, Lily?”

“No, Father. We’ll discuss this later.”

My face flushed hot. Annoyed by being reprimanded in front of Todaro, I ignored the rest of the conversation. I’d always wanted to see the open prairie and perhaps a buffalo herd chased by Indians, the majestic Rocky Mountains and California. California, with its mining camps, lush green meadows and warm sunshine, the cities of Sacramento and San Francisco that had to be as exhilarating as downtown Chicago. I’d pored over the grainy pen-and-ink drawings in the Chicago Times. Uncle Harrison, who’d gone west several years ago to make a fortune and succeeded, for the most part, would welcome me with open arms. I plopped down on an armchair and fingered the ridges of the brass floor lamp beside me. Somehow I needed to persuade Father to allow me to tag along on this trip.


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Guest Author Linda Carroll-Bradd Talks About “Dreams of Gold” + Giveaway

Thanks for hosting me today, Susana.

Today I’m talking about my sweet western historical novella, Dreams of Gold.  I love stories where one of the characters is definitely outside his or her comfort zone. That’s exactly where my heroine, Ciara Morrissey, finds herself when she acts on a deathbed promise made to her dear mother. From civilized Massachusetts to a frontier town in Wyoming Territory is quite a leap, and Ciara finds herself in all sorts of trouble.

Leave a comment here which includes your email address for a chance to win a copy of Dreams of Gold.

DreamsofGold_SMAbout Dreams of Gold

1871, Wyoming Territory

Easterner Ciara Morrissey travels west to honor a sacred promise to her mother and locate her fortune-seeking father. Three years of acting as caretaker to her grandparents and mother until their deaths has created a thirst in Ciara to see what the wide world has to offer.

Sheriff Quinn Riley has been tracking the Irish charlatan who swindled half the population of Bull City, Wyoming. He’s determined to stick close to the opinionated woman who arrived on the runaway stagecoach. Within only a few hours, easterner Ciara Morrissey upsets the townspeople by making inquires about his prime suspect. He’s duty-bound to keep her safe, even when being close to the green-eyed beauty sets off a stampede in his heart.


More evidence she was a stranger to the wild circumstances of the western frontier. Anticipation of organizing the chase flitted through him. “Did they use names? Or speak to their horses?” At her head shake, he fought back the urgency rising in his chest. “Anything that might provide a clue?”

“We heard shots, and Mr. McGinnis shouted for us to do what we were told. A man rode up to the window on each side, demanding our money and jewels.” A dainty shoulder lifted in a shrug. “That’s when Miss Fairchild screamed her virtue was about to be stolen and swooned, landing in my lap.” Green eyes danced, and a high-pitched giggle escaped. “Frankly, I doubt the robbers planned on lifting anyone’s skirts.” Eyes widening, she clapped a hand over her mouth and shook her head.

Damn. Quinn had seen witnesses suddenly realize the danger they’d been in and that’s when hysterics set in. Lord, he could not abide a crying woman. “Did you notice any detail about their saddles or markings on their faces that stood out?”

Her brows scrunched low, and she squared her shoulders, pulling her jacket snug across her breasts. “I feared for my very life, sir, and you think I should have noticed their saddles?” She inhaled deeply, and then her whole body stilled. “Yes, I do remember something about the saddles.”

He watched the movement of her chest—in particular, how the buttons strained their closures. The rhythm of his heartbeat kicked up and a bead of sweat trickled on his forehead. Lifting his gaze to her face, he leaned forward, forcing himself to concentrate on what she might share. “What’s that?”

“Each man sat in one.” Her body rigid, she raised the mug to her lips and waited, an eyebrow arched high.

Excerpt © Linda Carroll-Bradd

All Rights Reserved, The Wild Rose Press

authorSMAuthor Bio

As a child, Linda was often found lying on her bed reading about characters having exciting adventures in places far away. Upon reaching a landmark birthday, she decided to write one of those romances she loved so much. Easier said than done. Perseverance paid out and twelve years later, she received her first call from a publisher and a confession story was published. Now Linda writes heartwarming contemporary and historical stories with a touch of humor, and many have a tie to her previous home of Texas.

Linda currently lives in the southern California mountains with her husband of 34 years and their two spoiled dogs, Shiba Inu Keiko and terrier mix Phoenix.

Guest Author: Rue Allyn

TRRanniversarysmWin a $20 Amazon Gift Card and/or a Treasuring Theresa coffee mug!

Susana’s Parlour is celebrating the second anniversary of The Romance Reviews with the Treasuring Theresa Lucky In Love Giveaway. To enter the contest, click the TRR graphic at right or the Treasuring Theresa graphic in the side bar.

Before you go, leave a comment on today’s guest post for five contest entries. Be sure to include your email address in your comment!

This morning I’d like to welcome Rue Allyn to Susana’s Parlour. Rue is another member of our local writers’ group, the Maumee Valley Romance Writers of America. (Which, I’d like to add, is an incredibly supportive group of writers who are beginning to make their mark in the publishing world.)

When does a book begin?

The answer to this question depends on how you take it and who you are. Are you an author, editor, reviewer? Do you contemplate the best moment in a character’s adventure for your story to open? Do you ponder which decade, year, month, day, etc. is the best setting for your story? Are you a reader, interested in the biography of the main characters—how old they are when their story starts, what “backstory” events might have formed them? Or are you a bibliophile (book lover) interested in the evolution of the book? Each of these interests and more are covered in the general question, “When does a book begin?” Today, I’m interested in the last perspective, that of a bibliophile and will draw on my March 18, 2013 western historical romance, One Moment’s Pleasure, for examples.

roses2I could say, with some validity, that One Moment’s Pleasure’s existence began, May 10, 1869—the day the silver and gold spikes were driven into the rails at Promontory Point Utah, completing the first transcontinental railway in the USA. Without that historical event and those leading up to it, none of the fictional events in One Moment’s Pleasure could have taken place as they did. My story, the story that I wanted to tell, would not exist.

I could also argue that the forced or arranged marriage trope is the inciting element for One Moment’s Pleasure’s. I’ve always enjoyed forced marriage stories—especially when they end HEA—and have always wanted to write one. Once I began to think about writing such a tale, I wanted to turn the trope on its head (which I think I did) and make it fresh. The result wasn’t just One Moment’s Pleasure but three books: the entire Wildfire Love series of which One Moment’s Pleasure is the first. But the idea for the first book sprang from that forced marriage trope. How old is the trope? Well, forced and arranged marriages are as old as marriage itself (a subject of much debate between scholars much more sophisticated than I). Assuming that the history of marriage as an institution extends to pre-biblical times, I’d say my little western historical romance began a very long time ago.

I could produce other options for when One Moment’s Pleasure began—the day I had the first idea for a forced marriage story, the day I started research, the day I actually began drafting, etc. Please leave a comment and let me know when you think a book begins.

If you’re curious about the inciting incident of One Moment’s Pleasure, here’s the opening date and line:

Oakland Point California, July 1870

Weaving her way through the crowds thronging the Oakland Long Wharf railway terminal, Edith Marietta Alden of the Boston Aldens finally attracted the attention of a lanky Chinese man with a large wooden pushcart.

Want more? I include a blurb below, or you may follow the links below to find an excerpt and more information.

One Moment’s Pleasure will become a lifetime’s passion when spinster, Edith Alden, embarks on a search for her missing sister.  Pretending to be a rich bored woman looking for an interlude with an anonymous male Edith enters the San Francisco bordello where her sister was last seen. She escapes the bordello almost too easily, but she can’t escape the passion ignited by a stranger’s kiss.

Born and raised in the brothels of the California gold rush, Dutch Trahern worked for years to erase a childhood spent committing petty crimes and worse in order to survive. That past comes back to haunt him in the form of a woman he rescues from prostitution. Now his hard won respectability is threatened by an irresistible desire for a woman he shouldn’t want.

About the Author

????????????Author of historical, contemporary, and erotic romances, Rue Allyn fell in love with happily ever after the day she heard her first story. She is deliriously married to her sweetheart of many years and loves to hear from readers about their favorite books and real life adventures.  Learn more about Rue at

Watch for One Moment’s Pleasure, coming March 18, 2013, from Crimson Romance publishing. Better yet, Pre-order now through Rue Allyn’s Amazon Author Page

Guest Author: Shelter Somerset

Today, my guest is Shelter Somerset, who is here to talk about his historical gay romance, On the Trail to Moonlight Gulch. Welcome, Shelter! 

The first word in my historical gay romance On the Trail to Moonlight Gulch is “Love.” But love is described as a powerful force, even violent. With the ability to smack one in the kisser like a prize fighter. Love, like greedy bandits and loneliness, can cause unrelenting pain. Until honesty and self discovery allow for it to settle softly at one’s feet.

Moonlight Gulch seemed to write itself. The concept of the “mail-order bride” magazine came to me when I placed myself in the boots of the protagonist, Torsten Pilkvist. If I were living in 1886, where would I find same-sex love, not fleeting sexual encounters? I’d turn to the same means lonely men use today—anonymous social networks. In the 21st century, we have Internet chat rooms. One hundred fifty years ago, they had Matrimonial News, a well-known matchmaker periodical that brought together forlorn frontiersmen with women around the world. We can only guess that “gay” men might have satiated their dreams through those pages, as well.

Moonlight Gulch ventures beyond same-sex loneliness in an age when it seemed impossible to find. There is another universal and ageless theme I explore. Insatiable greed. Torsten’s pen pal and unsuspecting love interest, Franklin Ausmus, refuses to pan the gold on his homestead, but local prospectors, having long depleted most of the gold from the Black Hills years before, plot to take possession of Franklin’s land. It’s the age-old tale of the individual versus the ravenous mob.

I hope readers will gain from Moonlight Gulch that which I’d learned while researching and writing it. For one, we humans have transformed little throughout the generations. Only technology has really changed. We still seek love, and use whatever means available to us to find it. In Torsten’s day it was matchmaker magazines. Today it’s the Internet. I also hope readers come away from the novel questioning their own value structure. Strength in ideals comes from holding them up to the light for inspection. That is how Torsten learns the true power of love.

OnTrailMoonlightGultchFSsmAbout Moonlight Gulch

Nineteen-year-old Torsten Pilkvist, American-born son of Swedish immigrants, is searching for same-sex love in the hustle and bustle of 1886 Chicago. Frustrated and forlorn, Tory peruses a “mail-order bride” magazine and is captivated by an advertisement by a lonely bachelor living in the Wild West. Tory and wounded Civil War veteran Franklin Ausmus begin an innocent correspondence–or as innocent as can be, considering Tory keeps his true gender hidden. When Tory’s parents discover the letters, he’s forced out of his home and, with nowhere else to go, he boards the train to the Black Hills and the one place he feels he belongs—Franklin’s homestead, Moonlight Gulch. Can a genuine romance develop once Franklin hires Tory as his ranch hand—all while Tory desperately tries to keep Franklin from discovering his secret?


Dreamspinner Press


He splashed limewater on his chest, dressed in a crisp white shirt, gray pinstripe suit, blue cravat, and felt derby, and jumped on the electric streetcar to go from State Street to the 35th Street cabaret secretly known as a watering hole for men like him. Love was not his aim—he knew that was far from his grasp at a place like the cabaret. He wanted only company, affection, the fleeting kind that might lessen his grief and loneliness, like the way some used alcohol.

The instant Tory stepped inside the cabaret, the usual stares burned holes into him. He disliked the scene, yet he knew of no other place like it in Chicago. Many of the young men, both Negroes and whites, came for “business.” They congregated at the bar and the small standing tables, some selling, others buying. The regulars recognized him as one who seldom interacted with the locals, especially those known as “renters.” A few of the renters dressed as women, which Tory found both entertaining and distasteful. The older men from out of town ogled him. They often mistook him for a renter. He avoided eye contact to communicate his disinterest.

A player piano rolled out tunes in the corner. Some of his favorites, “Oh, Dem Old Golden Slippers” and “American Patrol,” lightened his mood. The cabaret, less crowded than usual for a Monday evening, ebbed and flowed with a sluggish apathy. Since it was the day after Easter, most of the regulars who often stopped by after work for drinks had likely remained at home with their wives and children. Not many out-of-towners had scheduled trips away from their families during the holiday.

The two bouncers appeared more relaxed than usual. Tory never learned if they were like the men who patronized the cabaret. They seemed disinterested in the goings-on, their eyes always narrowed with vigilance.

A boy of about fifteen, the cabaret owners’ youngest son, served drinks behind the bar. With a thin cigar clenched between yellowing crooked teeth, he poured and poured, his face lined with labor. The slightest spill of the liquor and his father, Mr. Levitzki, the stony-faced proprietor with the cannon-like voice, who roamed the cabaret like a grizzly bear, would slap the back of his head. The father’s temper was enough for Tory to want to leave the place, but there was no establishment as safe when looking for companionship.

Tory found an empty bench against the far wall. He kept his derby on, for it gave him the extra furtiveness he liked while at the cabaret. With his hands balled in his lap, he peered around under the short brim, taking note of anyone who resembled a gentleman. Weekdays were often more rowdy than weekends. During the week, drunken construction and railroad workers would come in to make “dates” with some of the younger men. The owners tolerated the flood of teamsters until their pockets came up empty. Afterward, Mr. Levitzki would give a subtle sign—two fingers tickling under his chin—and the bouncers would dispatch to their duties and herd the rowdies like cattle and toss them out the door.

Tonight, the holiday kept most of the heavy drinkers away. Tory enjoyed the dim calmness. Disorderly crowds and obnoxious noise were not what he searched for. Light from the setting sun oozed through the stained glass above the bar. A reddish blue hue, mixed with the pipe and cigar smoke, floated around the establishment. A Negro boy in women’s clothing swaggered by him. The bustle on his skirt protruded clownishly. Not even a stage actress would paint herself with so much makeup, Tory imagined. His contemptuous smirk brought a grunt from the faux woman, and he strutted off.

Some of the patrons held hands and nuzzled while sipping their drinks. Mostly they were renters and buyers. Another couple danced cheek to cheek to the high-pitched music streaming from the player piano. Tory watched, fascinated, as a couple kissed passionately in a dark corner. Even to him, overt displays of romantic affection between men in public seemed shocking.

A man walked into the bar. From across the dimly lit cabaret, Tory saw that he held his breath when he glanced around. He appeared as out of place as Tory felt, but his Panama skimmer and bamboo walking stick gave him a debonair quality. Clearly an out-of-towner on Chicago business. Men like him filled Chicago during the week, working all day, playing all night, looking for brief companionship. Tory watched as the two renters who had been sitting at the bar, including the Negro with the caricature-like bustle, circled him. They could spot an out-of-towner with money like an alley cat sniffing out fish carcasses. The competing boys grimaced at each other, their eyebrows arched high. The white boy nudged out his shoulder, indicating he was willing to fight. The renter in women’s clothing appeared ready to counter, but then his painted face fell. Slump-shouldered, he trudged back to the bar.

As if relishing his victory, the white boy grinned and rubbed against the man, flirting like the coquettish females in burlesque shows. Curious, Tory took mental notes of the out-of-towner’s reaction to the renter. Were his initial perceptions of the dark-featured man with rounded spectacles accurate? The man’s gaze remained fixed on the dartboard along the far wall. Suddenly the man turned to the boy. His lips moved. A second later, the boy’s smile transformed into a scowl, and he stomped off to stand next to his companion by the bar. Inwardly, Tory smiled. He had been right. He was a gentleman. But a married gentleman, no doubt. And a nervous one, at that.

158smAbout the Author

Shelter Somerset’s home base is Chicago, Illinois. He enjoys writing about the lives of people who live off the land, whether they be the Amish, nineteenth-century pioneers, or modern-day idealists seeking to live apart from the crowd. Shelter’s fascination with the rustic, aesthetic lifestyle began as a child with family camping trips into the Blue Ridge Mountains. His “brand” is anything from historicals, mysteries, thrillers, and contemporaries, all with individualistic themes. When not back home in Illinois writing, Shelter continues to explore America’s expansive backcountry and rural communities. His philosophy is best summed up by the actor John Wayne: “Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.”