Saturday, September 7, 2013
Author MELISSA JAGEARS--"LOVE BY THE LETTER" may just send "A BRIDE FOR KEEPS"--inspiring historical western romance
A BRIDE FOR KEEPS by Melissa Jagears
A Tender Tale of Love on the Prairie...
Although Everett Cline can hardly keep up with the demands of his homestead, he won't humiliate himself by looking for a helpmate ever again--not after being jilted by three mail-order brides. When a well-meaning neighbor goes behind his back to bring yet another mail-order bride to town, he has good reason to doubt it will work, especially after getting a glimpse at the woman in question. She's the prettiest woman he's ever seen, and it's just not possible she's there to marry a simple homesteader like him.
Julia Lockwood has never been anything more than a pretty pawn for her father or a business acquisition for her former fiance. Having finally worked up the courage to leave her life in Massachusetts, she's determined to find a place where people will value her for more than her looks. Having run out of all other options, Julia resorts to a mail-order marriage in far-away Kansas.
Everett is skeptical a cultured woman like Julia could be happy in a life on the plains, while Julia, deeply wounded by a past relationship, is skittish at the idea of marriage at all. When, despite their hesitations, they agree to a marriage in name only, neither one is prepared for the feelings that soon arise to complicate their arrangement. Can two people accustomed to keeping their distance let the barricades around their hearts down long enough to fall in love?
"A Bride for Keeps" is a compelling, character-driven historical western romance from author Melissa Jagears. Characters are the elements which capture and hold my interest in whatever I am reading. For me, storytelling is all about how the characters are portrayed. I must care about the people and want to follow their story and find out what happens to them. In "A Bride for Keeps", the hero and heroine are both attractive, yet their looks have worked as much against them as they have for them. Some things come easily to them, yet what they really want most in life seems always beyond their grasp. After returning from the war, Everett Cline has worked hard to hold on to his homestead, depending on his close friends, Dex and Rachel Stanton, and helping them in return. When Everett was jilted by his first love, who was Rachel's sister, Rachel eventually convinced him to seek a mail-order-bride. After three disastrous "matches", Everett believes he will never find a wife and life-mate. Rachel won't give up, though, and she secretly corresponds with a woman whom she thinks will just perfect for Everett. It's quite a surprise for Everett when Julia Lockwood arrives as his latest "bride". She's a petite society beauty from Boston, appearing too delicate and refined for life on a Kansas homestead. However, Julia has left the life she knew far behind, on the run from an uncaring father and an unscrupulous suitor. Determined to be taken seriously, and not just regarded for her stunning looks, Julia resolves to show Everett that she will make him a suitable wife. Everett is quite taken with Julia's beauty, but he is unsure of himself after so much rejection. Can a Boston belle and a Midwestern man of the land truly make a match? Both Everett and Julia struggle with being the person they think each other will want. Each of them has self-doubts, and each of them has secrets. Everett is still a man of religious conviction, while Julia's faith has suffered from the tragedies in her past. Will these two worthy hearts overcome their inner turmoil and trust each other enough to believe in love? A recommended read for lovers of heartfelt historical romance.
Review Copy Gratis Library Thing
LOVE BY THE LETTER by Melissa Jagears
Dex Stanton has never had much time for book learning. He's been too busy helping to provide for his family. Now that he's heading west, Dex is hoping to start a family of his own. However, his attempt to acquire a mail-order bride fails miserably when the lady writes back ridiculing his terrible spelling. Rachel Oliver may be the last person he wants to know what a dunce he is, but she's also the smartest woman in town--and it's clear he needs her help.
Rachel Oliver has lingered in town for three years secretly mooning over Dex Stanton, but now she's done. If the fool wants to write to a mail-order bride company, so be it. Once she begins giving Dex lessons, however, Rachel realizes she may not be prepared to give up just yet.
As their time together runs short, can two of the most stubborn people in town set aside their pride long enough to find love?
Love by the Letter is a companion novella to A Bride for Keeps, Melissa Jagears's full-length debut novel available fall 2013. Includes an extended sneak peek at A Bride for Keeps.
Melissa Jagears, an ESL teacher by trade, is a stay-at-home mother on a tiny Kansas farm with a fixer-upper house, and she likes to read, of course!