Kathleen Lawless Says Build it and They Will Come

The more research I do, the more I am filled with admiration for early settlers who packed up and left everything familiar in hopes of a better life. Especially the women. I like to think many of them had more freedom in their new homes—at least I write uplifting stories that express that sentiment. My heroines are independent and forward-thinking, focused on making a better life not only for themselves but for others. Historian Elizabeth Jameson noted western women “understood that they performed valuable work for their families and their communities”.

Several of my heroines became business owners and community activists, responsible for the building of churches, school, libraries and hospitals. I even have a heroine who is a physician. All these women were focused on improved quality of life for men, men, and children.  Their contributions, large or small, helped settle all areas of the American West.


Romanticized as my view may be, I see the settling of the West as a time of possibilities like never before. Women in the West gained political power ahead of their sisters in the East, and by and large put that power to good use. Women in the West also paid less heed to boundaries than their sisters in the East. I have one rebellious heroine who eschewed fashion dictates and designed her own version of breeches which were better for her work than a skirt.

There were definitely more men than women in the West, hence this photo. If you were a lady looking to get married, which one of these gents would spark your interest?  Comment below and one lucky winner will receive a copy of my recent release, Chelsea’s Choice, where my heroine has no idea what she is getting into when she follows a much-admired older cousin to Arizona.

Chelsea means well, but is basically clueless. Totally belittled by her patriarchal family back home, all she knows is she wants to do something meaningful and help others. Things in her new home get off to a rocky start when she bumbles into the life of a reclusive man who simply wants to be left alone. The more she tries to help, the more of a mess she makes in poor, reclusive Reece’s life.


Here’s a teaser from Chelsea’s choice, copyright 2022 Kathleen Lawless

Reece’s house must be set far back from the road, because the driveway went on forever until finally she rounded a curve where the narrow drive opened up to a long, narrow strip of land, home to a small cottage and several outbuildings. On the cabin’s opposite side stood a large hothouse, the roof crisscrossed with an interesting pattern of ridges.  A stone’s throw from the first hothouse, she saw the skeletal outline of what looked like a second structure.

She was so busy taking it in, the peaceful scene backdropped by a blue sky stretching as far as the eye could see before it dipped out of sight, that she didn’t see the large, furry animal running frantically toward her until almost too late.  As she swerved to miss it, her feet flew off the pedals and she lost control of her bicycle. It careened wildly toward the hothouse, the mangy mutt nipping at the vehicle’s back tire and growling.

Oh no!  As she neared the structure, the ground started to slope and she picked up speed at an alarming rate, the pedals spinning far too fast for her to get her feet back into position.

Straight ahead loomed the hothouse and she started to close her eyes, anticipating she and the bicycle would crash right through the glass structure.  Suddenly a man stepped directly into her path, grabbed hold of the handlebars and brought the bicycle to an abrupt stop that sent her tumbling from the seat to land at his feet.

Reece Rawlings glared at her from an intimidating height.  She hadn’t realized the other day quite how large he was.  Large enough to dwarf most men.  Without a word he patted his leg and the dog ran to his side, sat at Reece’s feet and eyed Chelsea with curiosity.

“You’re dangerous,” Reece said finally before he turned and started to walk away, the dog following.

“It was all your dog’s fault,” Chelsea said, stung, as she picked up the discarded bicycle, relieved it was none the worse for the encounter, and rushed to catch up to him.  “He came out of nowhere with no warning bark or anything.”

“He can’t bark.”

“What’s with a dog that can’t bark?”

Reece turned then, and eyed her.  “What’s with all the questions?”


Available here on Kindle or in KU   https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09Q9BG2FV?tag=pettpist-20

You can check out the entire Reclusive Man Series Here  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B09K7FP3SJ?tag=pettpist-20

USA Today Bestselling Author Kathleen Lawless blames a misspent youth watching Rawhide, Maverick and Bonanza for her fascination with cowboys, which doesn’t stop her from creating a wide variety of interests and occupations for her many alpha male heroes.

With nearly 50 published novels to her credit, she enjoys pushing the boundaries of traditional romance into historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense and women’s fiction.

She makes her home in the Pacific Northwest and loves to hear from her readers.  http://www.kathleenlawless.com

Better yet, sign up for Kathleen’s VIP Reader Newsletter to receive a free book, updates, special giveaways and fan-priced offers.    http://eepurl.com/bV0sb1


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34 thoughts on “Kathleen Lawless Says Build it and They Will Come”

  1. The first one. He stands apart from the rest and wears white. Don’t the good guys wear white? Oops, he has a black hat though. LOL

  2. Perhaps the one holding the cat. He looks as if has affection for the cat so he might be a good candidate for marriage.

  3. The first gentleman with is hat in his hand. His face looks as if he has a kind and gentle soul.

  4. that is tough just looking at them. but if I had to choose I would pick the one holding the dog. he obviously values life and has compassion

  5. I’ll take the one that smiles the biggest when he sees me……If he still has his teeth!

  6. I’m glad I didn’t have to choose a husband from a picture. At least these guys have a picture. From what I have read many mail order brides didn’t see their husband to be until the day they met and married.

  7. I think I would choose the first one on the left side, he looks like he might be a good guy. Your book sounds and looks very intriguing ! You are right, the women really had it rough during those times. Have a great weekend and stay safe.

  8. The one on the left looks like he’s holding a dog, but I can’t tell for sure. And, is that a sheriff’s badge on his suspender strap? If it is, he’s for sure the one. Otherwise, I might pick the one standing up in the doorway. That may be his black dog standing beside him. One of those two would be my choice, but I’m leaning to the older looking of the two holding the dog. I am pretty sure he would be a kind man, and easily persuaded to do what I want. Hahaha. Just kidding. I would want a God fearing, Christ loving man.

  9. Hm…Far right. Final answer!

    It’s hard to tell, but he looks kind of sweet and woebegone and lonely.

  10. Guy on the right looks a little more relaxed and the dog is at least next to or between him and the next from right. Is he easy going or lazy? Who knows?

  11. The two in the middle are the most promising. The one on the left is holding a cat and the dog seems to be closest to the one on the right. We have had both pets and that they like animals is a good sign. The one with glasses may be a bit more reserved and likely to spend evenings by the fire reading. The on standing near the dog strikes me as a more self-confident man who likes the out of doors. I would have to meet them to decide which I would be happiest with. (My husband is a nice combination of both their traits.)

  12. I would either go for the one holding the dog or the one in the doorway with the dog beside him . He looks confident, strong, and maybe a hunter so he could provide. The one holding the dog looks smart, reserved, and has a kind face, he could possibly work at a store and provide a comfortable life.

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