Linda Broday: Cattle Drive and Trouble

Are you ready? THE HEART OF A TEXAS COWBOY (#2 Men of Legend) is galloping into bookstores and online on May 2nd! I’m so excited. Houston Legend has tons of adventure, romance, and suspense waiting. This book has more twists and turns than a roller coaster.

After his father, Stoker Legend, gambles away half of the Lone Star Ranch, he tells Houston they can get it back—if he marries the new owner’s daughter. Houston reluctantly agrees but makes one thing perfectly clear—love is out of the question.

Yet, all Lara wants is a name for her baby. And kindness.

He’s never met or seen Lara so he has no idea what to expect, but marry her he does. Two weeks later, he leaves on a cattle drive, taking two thousand head of longhorns up to Dodge City. At the last minute, his cook quits so Lara steps in and goes along. Of course, the baby who’s just started crawling has to come too.

Trouble starts two days out when Houston sees riders trailing them. Soon, he discovers that Lara is unsafe and it turns into an all-out fight. Houston will do whatever it takes to protect his wife.

As they struggle to stay ahead of Yuma Blackstone, love blossoms between them and passion flares under the looming threat.

But, the baby, Gracie, crawls into a dangerous situation and they have to find a doctor…somewhere in Indian Territory.

That took some research and I had to contact Dr. David Ciambrone for help. A very nice man by the way and also a mystery/suspense writer.

I also had to see if anything was available to relieve Lara’s severe discomfort while Gracie is unable to nurse.

Lo and behold! There were breast pumps in 1878. In fact, I discovered that these mechanical devices dated back to Ancient Greece. I couldn’t believe it. In the U.S. they operated like a hand pump. Problem solved.

Here’s a short excerpt following their short marriage ceremony:

Her vivid green eyes held misery. “It’s just that I don’t know what you expect of me.”

Her statement caught him by surprise. What did he expect? Certainly not a wife, given they were utter strangers. But not a cook and housekeeper either. That wasn’t right. No wife of his would ever fill the role of a maid to be at his beck and call.

Hell! He yearned for a stiff drink.

 “A friend.” His answer surprised him probably more than it did her. “I expect you to be a partner. We both have gaping wounds that have to heal and things in our past to forget. I need someone who’ll stand with me in good times and bad.”

 A smile transformed Lara’s face. She was a beautiful woman. He felt the urge to let his fingertips brush her delicate cheekbones and drift along the curve of her jaw.

 “I can use a friend,” she said. “I’ll try not to ever make you sorry for your decision.”

“You won’t.” The words came out gruff and he didn’t know how he could say them with such confidence. Yet, somehow deep in his being a calm surety settled like disturbed silt back to the bottom of a riverbed.

He felt a tug to his trouser leg and glanced down. Gracie had crawled to him and gripped the fabric in her tiny fist. He picked her up. They would face lots of ups and downs but they’d survive. For no other reason than the little girl giving him a toothless, slobbery grin.

The babe needed a father. Lara a husband.

And Houston desperately needed some reason to keep living.

* * * *

I’m giving away three copies of the book before release day. Just tell me if you have a favorite marriage of convenience story, either book or movie. Mine is Sarah, Plain and Tall. Maybe it’s yours too.

* * * *

Oh, and I almost forgot…TO LOVE A TEXAS RANGER (#1 Men of Legend) is on sale for .99 until next Saturday, April 22, 2017!  Just click on the cover.

Linda Broday
I live in the Texas Panhandle where we love our cowboys.There's just something about a man in a Stetson that makes my heart beat faster. I'm not much of a cook but I love to do genealogy and I'm a bit of a rock hound. I'm also a NY Times & USA Today bestselling author of historical western romance. You can contact me through my website and I'd love to connect with you on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more. HAPPY READING!
http://petticoatsandpistols.com/sweepstakesrules/

55 Comments

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  1. Linda, Congratulations on the coming release of THE HEART OF A TEXAS COWBOY. A marriage of convenience is not what I expected, but it should be good. I love mail-order bride stories and realistically, most of them are marriages of convenience. SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL is a sweet one. It has been a long time since I’ve read it. Will have to dig out my copy for a reread.
    One of my favorites is not a novel, but a non-fiction book: True Stories of Mail-Order Brides on the Frontier by Chris Enss. It gives the true stories of these brides, what went right and what went very wrong.

    1. Hi Patricia…….Thanks for coming so early in the morning! Or maybe it was a late night. 🙂 I’ve read some of that Chris Enss book. Those true accounts are fascinating. A lot of those men just wanted someone to raise their kids and relieve their urges. But many found love and became equals with their husbands. I like those that worked. I hope you enjoy this book. I think it’ll tug at your heart.

      Love and hugs!

      1. I am humbled by the faith, hope , and desperation that was behind these women taking the plunge into such great unknowns in their attempt to find a better and happier life.
        And yes, it was late. My vision was slowing me down and I got to bed much later than posting my comment. I need to stop doing that.

  2. Congratulations on your new release!! I love marriage of convenience stories (as well as mail order brides), and I’m really looking forward to your second book in the Men of Legend series.

    Picking just one favorite is hard for me because I love the developing relationships so much, and different stories tackle it from different angles. So among my favorites are Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, Silver Lining by Maggie Osborne, His Secondhand Wife by Cheryl St John, and Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer. If really pushed I guess I’d choose Devil in Winter for a European historical, and Silver Lining for an American western.

    1. Hi Eliza…….I’m happy to see you and glad you’re so passionate about your marriage of convenience stories. Most of those you mention are favorites of mine. I’m going to have to find Silver Lining though. It sounds good. Linda Lael Miller wrote some great marriage of convenience stories too. That early McKettricks series was fantastic. I loved Rafe McKettrick. He’s still my book boyfriend.

      I think you’ll enjoy The Heart of a Texas Cowboy. Good Luck in the drawing!

  3. Linda- I’m so excited the time has come for The Heart Of A Texas Cowboy Book release. You’re going to blow everyone’s mind away with this phenomenal book. It truly is your best book yet. I’m intrigued by your example of Sarah, Plain and Tall, I’ll have to check it out. Catherine Anderson’s Blue Skies come to mine as a marriage of convenience. I know there are many many more, but my mine isn’t awake this early. Ha ha!!
    Congrats on this new book release. You have a great day. Love you my sweet sister friend.

    1. Good morning, Miss Tonya……I hope you’re right and readers will love this book. I hope you try Sarah Plain and Tall. I’ve only watched the movie and it’s amazing. I’ll have to try Blue Skies. I’m sure I’ll love it. You have a very blessed day, sister friend!

  4. Congratulations Linda! I liked the movie “Green Card” where the hero needed to get married to stay in the United States and the heroine found the perfect apartment with a greenhouse on the roof but the apartment was for married couples only.

    I would love to win a copy of your book. It sounds enticing and the cover is gorgeous!

    Blessings,
    Cindy W.
    countrybear52 AT yahoo DOT com

    1. Good morning, Cindy…….I’m so happy you dropped by and thank you so much for the compliment on the cover. I love it too. Oh my goodness! I’ve got to get Green Card! You’ve hooked me. The premise of the story has hooked me.

      Good luck in the drawing, dear friend!

  5. Oh, to choose a favorite. So difficult. I am going with two. Tall, Dark and Texan by Jodi Thomas and Outlander by Diana Gabledon.

    Congrats on the new release. I can’t wait to get to know Houston better.

    1. Good morning, Alisa…….I loved Tall Dark and Handsome! Jodi’s Wife Lottery series is also favorites. The premise of three women in jail having to find husbands to get out was really unique.

      I think you’ll love The Heart of a Texas Cowboy. Good Luck in the drawing on Sunday!!

  6. Congrats on the release!! I always love the marriage of convenience in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

    1. Hi Susan P……..Thank you for coming. You can’t beat Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. A great series! Good luck in the drawing on Sunday!!

  7. I enjoy marriage of convenience stories, but do not have a favorite.
    Congrats on your new release.

    1. Hi Estella……Thank you for coming. It’s always wonderful to see you. I think you’ll like this book. Wishing you tons of good luck in the drawing!

  8. Love a good marriage of convenience story. You have a great set up.

    1. Hi Jolene…..Great to see you. Thanks for coming and for the compliment. I hope to see at RT in Atlanta. That would be fun. Big hugs!!

  9. Congratulations, sweet lady!!! Marriage of Convenience stories are so good. I loved Morning Glory and there are many, many more. I hope you have a great day!

    1. Hi Melanie…….You know, Laveryl Spencer wrote so many great books. Morning Glory was just one of the best. She infused so much warmth and unique circumstances into each of her characters. She was a very special writer.

      Good luck in the drawing.

  10. It’s a troupe I really enjoy but I can’t say I have a favorite. It’s like saying which child is your favorite lol. I had a horrible time trying to work the pump I had – finally gave up!

    1. Hi Catslady…….Great seeing you. I have to agree with you. Picking a favorite out of the thousands of books we read is very difficult.

      Good luck in the drawing!

  11. Well now, a marriage of convenience can’t really think of any from a book, a movie one is The bachelor, where he had to find a bride to get an inheritance before he turned 30 , been a while since I seen it, but you want to go real life, I will say mine, LOL my husband married me because i needed dental insurance so i could be put on his insurance plan and get my tooth fixed, but we were already dating for 8 years, it was like are you going to marry me or what? we have been together come may 26 22years and november will be married 14 years. So I guess you can say we got married for not only love but for health benefits.

    1. Hi Elaine……Your story made me laugh. I’ve never heard of marrying to get a tooth fixed. Too funny! Yes, you definitely had a marriage of convenience! But I guess one reason is as good as another. And your marriage has stood the test of time. 🙂

      Good luck in the drawing on Sunday!

  12. Congrats on this upcoming release! 🙂 I do enjoy an entertaining marriage of convenience story… can not think of a fav off the top of my head though…

    1. Hi Colleen……Glad you came. My brain freezes up too when I’m confronted with something on the spur of the moment. I’m sure you’ve read and watched a million. They’re always so popular.

      Good luck in the drawing, special lady!

  13. This is one of my favorite themes: Some suggestions for the TBR pile
    Matthew by Emma Lang
    The Christmas Bargain by Shana Hatfield
    In Name Only by Janet Bieber
    Heard Through the GrapeVine by Teresa Hill
    all of Carolyn Davidson and Susan Foc books have this theme too

    1. Hi Anon1001…….Thank you for coming. I love seeing you. That’s quite a list. Out of those, Shanna’s is the only one I’ve read. I think readers are drawn to these types of stories because of the uncertainty. Will they or won’t they settle into their marriage and find love?

      Good luck in the drawing on Sunday!

  14. Congrats on your up coming release. To choose a favorite too hard. I enjoy and love all the books i read.

    1. Hi Kim……Thank you for stopping by. I’m glad to see you. Thank you for the congrats. I do think you might like this book. Lots of surprises in it and such a darling baby. She tried to steal the story and she can’t even utter a word.

      Good Luck in the drawing!

  15. Linda I’m on my 47th novel since I’ve started reading again in October, I’ve yet to read a novel that has a marriage of convenience. So I guess I can’t win this contest. Boo! I can’t wait to read Houston’s story because as you already know “To Love A Texas Ranger” was the book I read that got me back to reading again. What an adventure it has been and I owe that to you and Tonya!

    1. Hi Stephanie…….Waving madly. I’m so glad you came. I cannot believe you’ve read that many books in such a short time! Oh my gosh! Hey, you’re in the contest! We have to keep this adventure going.

      Much love and big hugs! Good luck in the drawing!

      1. I can’t wait to read your new book and my mother will be reading it after. So one way or another we will be reading it! I’ve been blessed with so many adventures so far. I’m a little obsessed!

      2. And I’m so excited about all your #1’s they are so deserved! Congratulations!! ?

  16. Happy congratulations on the new book. I can’t wait to read it. I enjoy marriage of convenience stories, and one of my favorites is Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas.

    1. Hi Cheryl C…….I’m so glad you came. Devil in Winter is one of my all time favorites. Such an excellent story. But I’ve never read a Lisa Kleypas book I didn’t like.

      Love and hugs! Good luck in the drawing on Sunday!

  17. Houston and Lara’s story sounds stinkin’ AMAZING!! I cannot wait!!! eek!! And who would’ve thought there’d be breast pumps back then! Huh… pretty cool.

    My favorite marriage of convenience story??? Hmmm….. Well, if we’re talking any genre, one of my latest favorites is Lady Luck by Kristin Ashley. But historical western??? I think I’d pick Tess and John Hawkins from Rosanne Bittner’s Texas Embrace. It was more a marriage of convenience for Tess as she needed a father for her unborn baby, but John was already in love with her at that point. So, I guess that’s a half convenience marriage. haha! 🙂

    1. Hey, Michelle……Glad you came. Yeah, it surprised me too that they had breast pumps. From what I read though they were really uncomfortable–no soft rubber cups or anything. Yuck. Lady Luck sounds good and so does Texas Embrace. I don’t get to read as much as I like–the hazards of a writing career.

      Much love and hugs, sweet lady! Good luck in the drawing on Sunday!

  18. Hi Fellow Filly. What a great blog today. And, for anyone who might read this, run don’t walk to your computer and get all of the Men of Legend books ordered. They are great! This one on Houston is truly fantastic. You really know how to write handsome, strong men and I’ve always thought Houston was the strongest of all and of course your great, sexy down-to-earth heroines. Love, love every word you write. Big hugs to my BFF. Phyliss

    1. Hi Phyliss…….I’m glad you enjoyed my blog. Houston kinda surprised me. He’s such a blend of both strong and tender, but at times I feared his alpha-ness was going to overshadow and not let the tender show. Thanks for compliments on my characters and writing. That’s so sweet of you to say.

      Love you, dear friend!

  19. It should be Susan Fox not Foc
    Montana Bride by Jillian Hart

    1. Thanks for clarifying, Anon1001. I had wondered about that name. And Jillian Hart writes such great stories.

  20. Congrats on your upcoming release, Linda! Although I can’t really name a favorite, I do love marriage of convenience stories!

    1. Hi Brittany……Thanks for stopping by. Glad you like this type of story. They hold a lot of suspense and you’re never quite sure how things will turn out.

      Good luck in the drawing!

  21. Girl you are faster than one of those Texas gunslingers with these books of yours! But no one is complaining, least of all me! 🙂

    1. Hi Rosie…..Yes ma’am! I’m pretty fast. Gotta get these stories in readers’ hands. No time to waste. Good luck in the drawing! 🙂

  22. Linda you got quite a chuckle out of me.. the thought of breast pumps on this cattle drive. Sounds like quite a caper… my favorite marriage of convenience story is short straw bride by karen witemeyer. I love it every time.

    1. Hi Naomi……Thanks for coming. I loved Short Straw Bride! I think that’s my favorite of Karen’s. The very idea of drawing straws for a woman. Karen’s stories are so humorous. Well, they don’t actually take the breast pump along on the drive. It’s more of a necessity they have to find. I apologize that I can’t say more. I don’t want to give the story away.

      Good Luck in the drawing! 🙂

  23. I can’t say I have a favorite marriage of convenience but I do love it when they fall madly in love.
    Lookingforward to reading Houston and Lara’s story

    1. Hi Miss Glenda!!!! So happy to see you. Thanks for coming. That journey between first meeting to the time they fall in love is such uncertainty. You just can’t predict what will happen. I love that and it makes each book very different. I think you’re going to love Houston’s story.

      Love you bunches and looking forward to seeing you in a matter of days!!

  24. Looking forward to your newest release. It was Miss Tonya that introduced me to your books. Thank you for sharing your writing talent with us. My favorite marriage of convenience book was by Catherine Anderson. Best I can remember it was Sweet Nothings.

  25. Linda – Congrats on your second Men of Legend book, THE HEART OF A TEXAS COWBOY.
    Sounds like you have quite a story for Houston & Lara. I have been reading, The Courageous Brides Collection with various authors, like Jennifer Uhlarik. Also read The Convenient Bride Collection. These books tell the stories about mail order brides that came out West to marry someone, site unseen. A lot of marriages of convenience.
    Thank You, Linda for the chance to win & visiting P&P.

    1. Hi Lois…….Those mail order brides had a lot more guts than I do. They left their homes with only a hope and a dream with a big helping of faith thrown in. They had to believe that this would work out because if they failed, they didn’t have anywhere else to go. So scary.

      Thank you for the congrats, my dear. Good luck in the drawing!

  26. Linda, very much looking forward to your newest book. Miss Tonya in Kansas introduced me to your books. And I have greatly enjoyed them. Thank you for continuing to share your writing talent with us. One marriage of convenience book I enjoyed reading was Hidden Away by Jennie Marts.

    1. Hi Jean…….Thank you for coming! You don’t know how happy I am to see you. I’m forever grateful to Tonya for introducing you to me. I loved the sweet card you sent and I’ve got it tucked away. So beautiful and your words touched my heart. You’re a kind, thoughtful lady. I’m going to have to check out Hidden Away. That sounds good and if you recommend it, it must be.

      Much love and hugs, sweet lady. Good luck in the drawing!

  27. I am looking forward to your newest release. Miss Tonya in Kansas introduced me to your books. I have enjoyed every one that I have read. Thank you for continuing to share your writing talent with this Texas reader. One marriage of convenience book that I enjoyed was Hidden Away by Jennie Marts.

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