Shannon here: Historical Romance author, Ada Brownell shares a romantic excerpt from her latest release, Peach Blossom Rancher. Comment or answer the question at the end of the post to enter the drawing for a PDF copy. Deadline: June 3rd, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Ada:
John Lincoln Parks finally finds a wife in Peach Blossom Rancher. An historical ROMANCE. Which woman will it be?
From Chapter One:
The young lady rancher flipped her blonde braid over her shoulder.
“But I wouldn’t keep Bellea around here. She has a temper to match her red hair. Yet, after her parents died, she lost her spunk. Claims Wellington compromised her, but nobody believed it.”
John took his knife out of his pocket and began grooming his fingernails. “She was doing a lot of praying when we found her, and she wanted me and Abe to leave her alone. Soon as I understood a baby was on the way, I went for Polly.”
Edwina Jorgenson wrinkled her little turned-up nose. “What’s that terrible odor?”
John stepped to the fence. “Might be coming from my prize pigs. See the big one over there I call Gertie?”
Gertie trotted close and rubbed her prickly mud-covered back on the hog wire. “I expect to make big money from pork while I rebuild the horse herd and work in the peach orchards. You ought to try a few pigs. You get a quicker turnover with your money than with horses. Your papa used to raise them. Besides, it’s always nice to have smoked ham and bacon available.”
Edwina leaned over the fence. The pigs grappled with each other over the slop, snorting and grunting.
“I might get some. The little ones are cute. Since my papa is in the wheelchair, I’m running everything. How is the pork market doing?”
“It sounded great to me. It …”
Gertie stuck her snout through the fence and sucked Edwina’s lacy pink dress. Edwina jerked the skirt out of the slimy jaws and then, stringy pig saliva slid down her pretty legs.
“Eeeeewwww!” she squealed, holding her dress out away from her. “I didn’t know pigs would eat clothing.”
Laughter almost escaped John’s lips. He pressed his fist over his mouth until his insides quit quaking in case she was mad enough to use the gun strapped on her slim middle.
“Gertie probably smelled the cornstarch you used to starch your dress. I’d guess for her it was quite tasty. I’ll get you a towel.”
“Don’t bother.” She grabbed a big blue handkerchief from the buggy, wiped at her legs and jumped in the driver’s seat. “You probably wanted me to stand over by the fence so that would happen. You are incorrigible, John Parks. Get someone else to go to the church picnic with you!”
As the dust rose from her departure, she almost ran into the mailman. John meandered to the mailbox. Strange. He hadn’t asked her to the picnic. He didn’t intend to.
From Chapter 13
Walking toward the house, he noticed Bellea hanging diapers on the clothesline. Her red hair glistened in the sunlight. Every strand flattered her flawless face.
Valerie played with her own little son who walked on the lawn. Hadn’t it been more than a year since her husband died? She should be out of mourning by now. He frowned.
Two available women here and he had no wife. Well, he’d be sure to send Valerie away tomorrow on the train with a kiss she wouldn’t forget, and he’d get Bellea out of the house before he got ideas about kissing her.
The next morning at the railroad station John disregarded Valerie’s dress, black because she still mourned for the husband killed in the fire, pulled her close and pressed his ready lips to her lightly painted ones. She blinked, and her mouth dropped with surprise. Yet elegance radiated from her whole body.
“We didn’t have much time together,” he whispered near a small ear that held a diamond earring. A pleasing fragrance filled his nostrils. “I don’t want you to forget me when you get to Boston. I’m not much of a writer, but I’ll write you if you write me. When your mourning’s over, I’ll come to Boston so we can see what the future holds.”
She glanced at the waiting passengers and allowed them to go by. A smile pulled her lovely cheeks into roses, already brightened with pink. “Sure. I’ll write. I enjoyed our visit and will look forward to seeing you.”
John pecked little Christian on the cheek and then reached out and drew them both into his arms and gave them a squeeze. “We need much more time together.”
Valerie clutched his hand with her dainty fingers and held on until the train whistle blew and the conductor shouted, “All aboard!”
Her warm damp lips touched his cheek. “I’m glad I met you at your sister’s wedding.” “Tell John bye-bye,” she urged her boy. He waved, a huge smile revealing about a dozen shiny teeth.
Ada Brownell has been writing for Christian publications since age 15 and spent much of her life as a daily newspaper reporter. She has a B.S. degree in Mass Communications and worked most of her career at The Pueblo Chieftain in Colorado where she spent the last seven years as a medical writer. After moving to Springfield, MO in her retirement, she continues to freelance for Christian publications and write non-fiction and fiction books.
She currently is working on another novel, plus compiling her more than 125 articles from The Pentecostal Evangel into a book.
She is author of Peach Blossom Rancher, released By Elk Lake Publishing in 2016; The Lady Fugitive, Elk Lake 2014; Joe the Dreamer: The Castle and the Catapult, 2013; Swallowed by Life: Mysteries of Death, Resurrection and the Eternal, 2011; Imagine the Future You, released 2013; and Confessions of a Pentecostal, Radiant Books, out-of-print but released in 2012 for Kindle;. All the books are available in paper or for Kindle. Imagine the Future You also is an Audio Book. Learn more and connect:
About the book – Peach Blossom Rancher:
The sequel to The Lady Fugitive; Book 2 in the Peaches and Dreams series. Suspense, romance, humor, murder, insanity, hope, fun, wrapped in a Western you won’t forget By Ada Brownell
A handsome young man inherits a ranch in ruin and a brilliant doctor is confined to an insane asylum because of one seizure. Yet their lives intersect.
John Lincoln Parks yearns for a wife to help rebuild the ranch and eyes Valerie MacDougal, a young widow who homesteaded, but also is an attorney.
Will the doctor ever be released from the asylum? Will John marry Valerie or Edwina Jorgenson, the feisty rancher-neighbor he constantly fusses with? This neighbor has a Peeping Tom whose bootprints are like the person’s who dumped a body in John’s barn. Will John even marry, or be hanged for the murder?
Can’t wait for the drawing? Get your copy now: http://ow.ly/4ETL302QdhW
Question for readers: What’s your favorite ranch or farm animal? What’s your least favorite?
Come back May 30th for Regina Merrick!