Brides of the West: Something Old, Something New

That’s the theme for the upcoming Love Inspired Historical spring wedding anthology, Brides of the West.  It won’t be out until April, but my author copies arrived in a nice big box. Time for a giveaway!  Leave a comment and I’ll toss your name in the Stetson–a white one to honor weddings.  Sometime tonight I’ll pull out two names and post the winners.

I’m delighted to be sharing the antho with two wonderful LIH authors, Janet Dean and Pamela Nissen.

Here’s our back cover copy:

Josie’s Wedding Dress by Victoria Bylin

Desperate for someone to help her save her ranch, Josie Bright makes a deal with Ty Donner. Now the man who left her waiting at the altar is making her hope for things she had long stopped wishing for.

Last Minute Bride by Janet Dean

Elise Langley was stung to the quick when her would-be suitor suddenly left town. But when David Wellman returns and they are thrown together organizing their friends’ wedding, can she open her heart again.

Her Ideal Husband by Pamela Nissen

As a girl, Lydia Townsend hoped to marry Jebediah Gentry–until his rejection spoiled her dreams. When family duty brings her home, it’s Jeb’s chance to show Lydia that now is the time for wedding dreams to come true.

Now here’s an excerpt from Josie’s Wedding Dress. It’s taken from the middle of the first scene. We’re in a church cemetery and in Ty’s point of view as he faces the woman he left at the altar…

 EXCERPT

The buggy halted, then creaked as the female climbed down. With his neck bent, Ty listened to the squeak of the gate as she opened it. He tried to follow her movements, but the grass muted her steps. He listened for the rustle of her skirt but heard nothing. Frozen and alert, he thought of the years he’d waited in a prison cell. He’d learned to be patient. He could be patient now. He wouldn’t budge until the woman went on her way. He thought of the graves he’d seen. Was she visiting the small one that belonged to a child? A newer one with a name he didn’t recognize?

A rose-like fragrance drifted on the air, becoming stronger as the woman approached. Josie liked fancy soaps. She also liked roses. A soft gasp confirmed his deepest fear. This woman knew him. This woman was Josie.

“Ty? is that you?”

He turned enough to see the hem of her skirt. It took him back to the day before the wedding and the banter about “something borrowed, something blue.” She’d whispered in his ear about a blue garter, and he’d loved her more than ever. Now he looked up slowly, taking in the hard line of her mouth. Gone was the cheerful girl who’d teased him with mischievous smiles. In her place he saw a woman burdened by life. Her eyes were still turquoise and her chestnut hair gleamed under a straw bonnet, but she’d lost her sparkle.

Ty had come home for this very moment, yet he felt unprepared as he matched her gaze. Instead of the words he’d practiced, he stared into her eyes, feasting on the past until he found his tongue. “Hello, Josie,” he said in a drawl. “I’m hoping we can talk.”

 Don’t forget to leave a comment to be eligible for the drawing.  For fun, let’s share our favorite wedding memories.  What made you smile or laugh?  Or do you tear up like I do?  My favorite part of any wedding is when the bride and groom exchange their vows.    

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Victoria Bylin is under contract with Bethany House Publishers for two inspirational contemporary romances.Prior to jumping to the present day, she wrote westerns for Harlequin Historical and Love Inspired Historical. Her books have finaled in the ACFW Carol Awards, the Rita Awards and RT Magazine’s Reviewers’ Choice Awards. She and her husband live in Lexington, Kentucky and have two grown sons. You can learn more about Vicki at www.victoriabylin.com

34 thoughts on “Brides of the West: Something Old, Something New”

  1. What a romantic anthology! And your excerpt has certainly whetted my appetite, Vicki. I love the hint that something besides fear of commitment kept him away from her. Makes me want to learn all Ty’s secrets.

    Congrats on a fun project!

  2. I love anthologies. This one sounds great. When my husband and I got married, we went to light the eternity candle and it wouldn’t light. we stood there and tried to light it four or five times. The minister finally got out a lighter and lit it for us because what we were using wasn’t doing anything.. Everyone in the church just laughed. Thanks for the giveaway.

    e.balinski(at)att(dot)net

  3. Vicki, I’m already loving Ty and Josie! Talk about your cliff-hanger excerpt. :o)

    All the stories sound like fun. Can’t wait to read this anthology.

  4. Hi Joanne B! That’s a fun story about the eternity candle. I can just see everyone waiting and watching . . . waiting and watching 🙂 Glad the minister had a back-up lighter! You’re in the drawing.

  5. The book sounds really good. I like the cover too.
    At my friend’s wedding, she started screaming when the vows were being read. We did not know it at the time, but a bee came out of her bouquet and was flying around her face. Needless to say, there was a slight interruption but the wedding proceded as planned after a few minutes. The poor groom thought it was about him!

  6. Hi Victoria. Great excerpt. Your novella sounds good. The funniest part of my wedding is when my husband said “I do!” really loud before the preacher finished asking him.

  7. Can’t wait to read three of my favorite authors at one sitting!

    So hard to choose for my wedding. It was 110 degrees, no exaggeration, and almost as humid in a church with NO air-conditioning. The ushers all had sweat stains on their tuxes. What pictures those made!

    But everyone noticed I kept prompting the groom as he said his vows. He had said earlier he was worried he would forget, stumble, whatever. I was just making sure that didn’t happen!

    Peace, Julie

  8. I love anthologies and can’t wait to read this one. Such a beautiful cover, too! I always tear up at weddings, even while watching them on TV.

  9. Hi Ladies! I’ve got you all in the drawing…My day just got complicated. I’m headed to the hospital to visit with my father-in-law. He’s doing okay, but I want to go say hi. I’ll be back later.

    Love the stories! A bee in the bridal bouquet needs to go in a romance novel!

  10. Beautiful cover and great excerpt, Vicki. Some reader is going to be very lucky. Hang in there with your in-laws, I know this is a tough time.
    P.S.
    I have blocked my wedding. 🙂

  11. This sounds wonderful love the little blups to the stories, and I can’t wait to read more.

    I haven’t been to a wedding in years but you are right the best part is the wedding vows.

  12. Love the cover… I was waiting to cut cake at the reception… bride & groom were doing the photo op…. ummm hurry up guys.. that layer is starting to slide… gently holding… hurry up!

  13. My wedding. Oh man was that a long time ago.
    It cost (total including reception and pictures) $400.
    The reception was cake and punch and nuts and mints in the social hall of our church.
    the wedding was at 2 pm my husband and I were on the road for our honeymoon by 4 pm.
    I wore my sister’s dress, she’d gotten married six months before me. I think it needed to be hemmed is all, otherwise it fit fine. (well, fine-ish. I wasn’t overly concerned with what I looked like honestly, I wonder why that was?)
    Those were the good old days.
    We’ve been married 35 years and have had two weddings for our four daughters and they both about killed us.

  14. Preparing for our wedding was one of the busiest times of my life! If I wasn’t at work, I was with Ken or sewing 2 bridesmaids’ dresses and my wedding
    dress. Fifty-one years later, I still look on that as one of the best times of my life!

    I love the wedding couple’s exchange of vows but there’s also one other moment for which I watch.
    It’s the moment when the groom sees his beautiful
    bride in all her bridal glory!

  15. Congrats, Vicki. I love novellas, anthologies, and weddings, so I’m really looking forward to this book. congratulations…the excerpt is awesome and the cover, too. xoxo

  16. Victoria,
    Thank you for the excerpt. I love anthologies and this one sounds good. From the blurbs, I gather the “something old” is a former sweetheart and “something new” is their second chance. A nice theme for a set of stories. Everything will happen in its own time, for its own reason. We don’t always see the reason why, but we should always be ready to take that second chance when it is offered to us.

    My favorite wedding memory is bittersweet. My mom passed away in August and I married the following June. We had an outdoor wedding, the first (and last for a long time, 40 years ago they weren’t that common) in the area. The wedding was held at a shrine in the mountains overlooking the lake. It was one of my mom’s and my favorite spots. It poured for 2 or 3 days prior to the wedding and we were concerned because we had no alternate site. The morning of the wedding dawned clear and beautiful. The weather was perfect with a slight breeze to keep the black flies (a vicious little creature I had forgotten about) at bay. Within an hour or so of the reception, it started raining again and continued for 3 or 4 days. We all decided it was mom’s way of blessing the union and being with us.

    Congratulations on JOSIE’S WEDDING DRESS in BRIDES OF THE WEST. I am sure it will do well when released in April. I will be looking for it.

  17. Sounds like a fun collection! These authors are all new-to-me (dare I admit?) For some reason, at my wedding, we did not have a car in which to leave the reception. Our own car had been breaking down, and we just didn’t have anything else set up. It was one of those things I just didn’t have time to stress over. At the reception, a friend came up to us and said she wanted to lend us her car for our honeymoon. We accepted. It was small, but nice and new. I still don’t know how she knew we needed it, but it was a great moment!

  18. Vicki,
    This looks like a wonderful collection! I will be looking for it for sure. Oh, weddings! My husband and I got married in WV in FEBRUARY–snow on the ground (of course!) and we couldn’t take time off from work for a honeymoon other than a Friday to make it a long weekend. What did we do? We stayed home! Those were the “hungry years” for sure. We got married in his brother and sis-in-law’s house, and it was the best wedding I could have ever asked for. They moved all their furniture out and put in folding chairs in their living room and turned their dining room into a beautiful reception area for the cake and finger sandwiches and punch. That was such a gift of love to us. I look forward to reading this anthology, and thanks for today! LOL I’ve got power on and am all scheduled for tomorrow!
    Hugs, my filly sis–hope your fil is doing well.
    Cheryl P.

  19. Love,love the post today,thanks so much for sharing,,I just remember being very nervous on my Wedding day,but I was just as nervous at my childrens weddings Too!

  20. Love the cover and will be looking for this one!!

    We married in the fall. September 15, 1963, to be exact. It rained in the morning but the sun came out in the afternoon and turned the day very warm. Our poor goomsman was sweating buckets. Our two flowergirls stood between us and the minister and sang “Jingle Bells” during the singing of the “Wedding Prayer”. Everyone was wondering what was so funny to the bride, groom, and the minister.

  21. I love the cover!!!! You are one of my favorite writers…I love your books…

    I have to agree that my favorite part is where the vows are exchanged…Makes me think of when my husband and I got married…I think of that a lot here lately since he crossed over into the spirit world in October unexpectedly….

    I hope to win the copy….

    Melinda

  22. My favorite memory of my wedding was when our sweet little country preacher spread his jacket on the ground and asked us to kneel down on it so that he could pray over us. 18 years later and I still get teary.

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