Excerpt Friday – The Marshal’s Ready-Made Family

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Welcome to Excerpt Friday!  Each Friday we’ll be featuring excerpts from recent releases by our very own Fillies.  So grab a cup of coffee and read on.  And if you find you’re hooked by what you read (and we know you will be!) just click on the book cover to purchase the entire book.

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From Author Sherri Shackleford  – The Marshal’s Ready-Made Family

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Sherri will be giving away a book or an amazon kindle edition to one person who leaves a comment on today’s post.


The marshal's ready-made familyJoBeth McCoy knew Marshal Garrett Cain’s life was about to change forever—and all she could do was sit with his young niece until he heard the tragic news about his sister.

The towering double doors behind Jo and five-year-old Cora creaked open, and Reverend Miller cleared his throat. “You can send in the child now.” He held out his hand for Cora. “Marshal Cain has been informed of his sister’s passing.”

Her heart heavy, Jo stood, then hesitated in the dappled sunlight. A soft breeze sent pear blossoms from the trees on either side of the shallow church steps fluttering over them like fragrant snow petals.

Cora rose and snatched Jo’s hand. “Will you go with me?”

A riot of flaxen curls tumbled merrily around the little girl’s face, but her Cupid’s-bow mouth was solemn beneath her enormous, cornflower-blue eyes. Cora clutched a paper funnel filled with lemon drops in her left hand. Her battered rag doll remained anchored to her right side.

Jo met the reverend’s sympathetic gaze, grateful for his almost imperceptible nod of agreement. He was a squat, sturdy man in his middle fifties with thinning gray hair and a kind smile.

The three of them stepped into the church vestibule, and Reverend Miller directed them toward his tiny, cluttered office. Jo paused as her eyes adjusted in the dim light.

Marshal Cain sat on a sturdy wooden chair before the desk, his expression grim. Her heart skittered, but she swallowed back her nerves and forced her steps closer.

His eyes were red, and the tail end of a hastily stowed handkerchief peeked out from his breast pocket. As though embarrassed by his tears, he didn’t meet her gaze. Instead, he focused his attention on the petite fingers clutching Jo’s waist. He didn’t stand or approach them and for that Jo was grateful, especially since Cora cowered behind her.

He caught sight of his niece’s frightened gaze and blinked rapidly. “Hello, Cora. I know we’ve never met, but your mother and I were brother and sister.”

Jo had only seen the marshal a handful of times, but he was an imposing sight sitting down, let alone standing. Well over six feet tall, he wore his dark hair neatly trimmed. Though he didn’t sport a beard, a five-o’clock shadow perpetually darkened his jaw.

His face was all hard lines and tough angles, with a deep cleft dividing his chin. An inch-long scar slashed at an angle from his forehead through one thick, dark eyebrow. Other women might prefer a gentler face, but Jo found his distinctive features fascinating. Not that she looked. A woman simply couldn’t help but notice things once in a while.

Felicia Filly
When I'm not keepin' all these Fillies in line, I'm practicing my roping so I can catch me a cowboy. Me and Jasper (my mule) are two peas in a pod. Both of us are as crotchety as all get-out.
Updated: April 27, 2014 — 8:22 pm


  1. I have been fascinated by this book ever since it was first mentioned on here while I have been following this blog. It sounds very interesting!

  2. Boy that excerpt tugs on the heart… I enjoy those Love Inspired Historicals.

  3. I am looking forward to reading The Marshal’s Ready-Made Family.Have a wonderful weekend.

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    I’m hooked—-now I need to read the rest of the book.

  5. Been waiting for this one!! Thanks for excerpt & opportunity to win a copy!

  6. You have certainly tugged on my heartstrings with this excerpt! I can’t wait to read more about Marshal Garrett Cain and his niece, Cora!

  7. Congratulations on your new book! Loved reading the excerpt and I look forward to reading it.

  8. This one has been firmly on my Wish List since it was first highlighted here.
    Thanks for the peek at how this “family” began forming. Hopefully it won’t be long before I can get it.

  9. I am sure ready to read more! The Marshal’s Ready-Made Family sounds like a great read.

  10. Congratulations to Sherri on her book. I have wanted this book since first seeing it. And, reading the excerpt, I already know I will like it. Thanks for this chance to win it. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

  11. Wow! This excerpt is definitely intriguing. I will be adding this book to my TBR list. Thank you for sharing!

  12. What an intriguing way to weave a family together, Sherri! I’m itching to read the rest of your new book soon. Thank you for sharing an excerpt with us.

  13. Wow! I love it!

  14. This book is as good as I thought it would be from what I just read. Can’t wait to read more. Thanks for the chance to win a copy. It has been on my want to read list since I first saw it.

  15. Thanks everyone! I was working downtown yesterday and had NO internet accesses. Talk about awful! I can’t believe how reliant I am on the internet 🙂

    With all these lovely comments, I think I’m going to giveaway a couple books 🙂

  16. This sounds very interesting. Can’t waith to read it.

  17. Sherri, this looks like a real winner! I’m sorry I’m a ‘day late and a dollar short’ as Mom used to say. Loved your excerpt and I’m VERY much looking forward to reading this story! “A woman simply couldn’t help but notice things once in a while.” I love that line! I bet she DID notice him, for sure–I know I sure would!
    Best of luck with this story!

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