My favorite gift this Christmastime is a place in the corral of authors at Prairie Rose Publications. I want to publicly thank the editors for bringing Claiming His Heart to life!
What’s the story about? Well, caught between a noose and a cave in, Tulsa Sanderson must do anything possible to prove his brother’s innocence…even if it means marrying a gold miner’s daughter he just met. He needs every nugget and flake he can pull from her worn-out claim, but he sure doesn’t need a wife. Save his brother and he’ll be back on the Texas cattle trails. God, and trusting Him, are things of the past.
Charlotte Amalie lost her heart, her virtue, and her money to the last mysterious outsider who came to the valley. Faith? That’s wavered after too many family tragedies. Marrying the handsome Tull is her only choice to keep hidden the terrible family secrets he bears. But the unwanted marriage douses her plans to leave the valley to get help for her wounded twin brother…, yet stirs up hope and love for Tull…and begins to fortify her weakened faith.
Can the two of them find a future–and faith–together even with their haunted pasts?
Setting this story in Holcomb Valley, near Big Bear Lake, California was easy for me. I actually started the book a while back as a secular historical, but upon my foray into inspirational romance, I realized the themes of the story and the decisions the characters make–and made in the past–were a good segue into a faith-based tale. On a visit to the valley not long ago, I almost heard voices from the past. It was easy to imagine my characters in the real-life places of long ago.
Holcomb Valley was once the richest gold strike in Southern California, and its mother lode has never been found. This meadow is where the real Belleville stood, a slapdash village named for the first baby born in the valley.
Of course “Belle” Van Dusen is mentioned as my heroine’s childhood chum. And this arrastra, a rock circle where hard quartz rock was crushed to find gold flakes by donkey power, plays a part in the story.
And although it’s a ruin now, “Pygmy Cabin” shelters the reluctant couple during a blizzard.
Please comment today for a Kindle copy of the book! Tell us about a historical place from the past that “spoke” to you!
He lifted his Stetson. Hard fingers ran against his scalp, ending at his neck to ease the tangle of nerves. The lost childhood, his dead ma, still tore his heart in two. But he had a chance to redeem it all, to save his brother—if these twins didn’t get in the way.
Then Charmlee’s eyes turned as hard as her voice, and she lifted her chin to stare straight in his eyes. “All right. I’m forced to agree this letter isn’t a forgery. But that doesn’t make you who you claim.” She raised an eyebrow. “Any thieving cowpoke could have collected that general delivery post and sought me out.”
Her smirk irked him. “I am who I claim. Make no mistake.”
“Well then,” Charmlee’s gray eyes narrowed and her voice slowed like a freezing creek. “Just how far would Mr. Tull Sanderson go to inherit his ‘birthright?’”
“How far? I already come all the way from Texas.”
She raised her eyebrows, and sashayed closer. “I mean, Daddy’s left a proviso. A requirement.”
“I will do anything,” he vowed, blood racing. Each day wasted brought his brother closer to doom.
“You sure about that? Well, I won’t, Mr. Tull. Make no mistake.” She was close enough now to whisper but be heard.
“What do you have to do with anything? You aren’t his kin. You said so yourself.” Tull tightened his fists in impatience.
“It seems I am the key, Mr. Tull.” Suddenly her gaze turned elsewhere. He froze. Like she was hatching plans to run off before settling things. But then she turned to him with a voice full of trembles, flicking the letter at him. “That key to your birthright, as you said. According to Daddy’s wishes, you don’t get a thing unless you marry me.”
Amazon Buy link:
Prairie Rose Publications Link: