Today I am featuring
An Unlikely Marriage
by Linda Carroll-Bradd
My second story in Debra Holland’s Montana Sky Kindle World released July 27th. Set in 1886 Montana Territory, An Unlikely Marriage follows characters introduced in the first novel, Laced by Love, as they struggle to reach their goals.
Helping injured cowboy Torin Quaid drive mustangs north provides a way for vaudevillian Nola York to earn a train ticket east—and get one step closer to her goal of auditioning for Buffalo Bill’s Wild West stage production. The temporary marriage is solely for propriety’s sake. Until disaster strikes, and the two must rely on each other—emotionally and physically—to safely reach Torin’s ranch. Will a marriage of convenience turn into more on a trail drive through Montana Territory?
My Book Review:
This book is the second in a series featuring two sisters and their “wagon mate,” members of a traveling caravan show who find themselves abandoned and stranded by the caravan organizer and promoter. Most of the troupe split up and go their separate ways. Nola still intends to follow her dream of taking her dog act to the big time back east, but is thrown off when her own sister who never took to the traveling performer’s life the way Nola did decides to stay in town and marry a local man.
Nola meets Torin who is passing through with a string of mustangs he needs to get back to his family’s ranch. Unfortunately, an injury lays him up. The two agree to work together to help each other achieve their goals. They enter into a marriage of convenience before they take Nola’s lavender gypsy wagon and start for Torin’s ranch.
This book reads well as a stand-alone novel. However, I believe most readers will find it more enjoyable if they first read the first novel in the series, Laced by Love. The premise for the series alone is interesting. For one thing, the author’s research into traveling performers of the 1800’s, including the Buffalo Bill Wild West show, as well as other details make for captivating reading.
The author has a way with characters. Nola and Torin have well-developed personalities. As for the dogs, I could easily visualize them performing. I enjoyed witnessing the change in attitudes and priorities between these two characters as they traveled together and faced the challenges that arose.
This is a sweet romance, well written and a delight to read. I highly recommend it.
A coil of rope hung from Banan’s saddle, and Torin fumbled with the ties until they came loose. He glanced around for a flattish rock to use to cut the hank. Darn this bum arm. Tensing, he stomped over to a gray rock that would serve. “If you hold the rope taut, then I can cut off a length from one end.”
She complied and, between the two of them, the eight- or nine-inch piece was cut free.
The length in her raised hand hung like a top-heavy shaft of wheat. “Should I just twist apart the wound coil?”
“Only one ply at a time.” If he had two good hands, he’d be almost done by now. “After each removal, check if it fits in the loop.”
Nola shot him a narrowed-eyed look before she stripped off her gloves and picked at the end of the strand, pulling a strip loose.
Maybe his voice wasn’t as calm as he’d thought. He crossed his right arm under his left to support the wrist.
“Don’t you have a story that goes along with a situation like this?” She stretched a ply away from the remaining length. “When we were in Morgan’s Crossing, you always had lots of stories to share.”
Torin clenched his jaw. Her gentle, precise movements reminded him of how his mother unwrapped a present at her birthday or Christmas. Favoring the strip-and-shred method, he’d never understood slow and savoring. He shifted his boots in the thick grass. Somehow, as Nic’s houseguest, he’d felt like he had to earn his keep by being especially congenial. No better way to make light of his stupid mistake in handling the wild stallion that caused his injury than to make fun of himself. “Nope. Never had to repair a wagon before.”
“Huh.” Her nose crinkled as she concentrated on peeling the rope.
Needing to feel like he contributed to this repair, he dug out the chain loop from his pocket and held it up.
Nola aimed the end toward it, but the strand was too wide. “Aren’t all ranchers supposed to know how to do those types of chores?”
The slander of his profession didn’t sit any better than the sting against his pride. He unclenched his jaw before responding. “Not when several men split duties on a ranch. Each has his own specialty.”
For a moment, her hazel eyes widened and she sucked in a breath. Returning her concentration to her task, she went silent.
Being terse toward your new bride on the first full day of your marriage was probably not the wisest act. Torin slipped his good hand into his back pocket and walked a few paces away, tipping up his head to study the wintery sky. Grayish-white clouds bunched together like tufts of cotton formed a puffy bank toward the north. He needed to keep an eye out in case they grew any darker.
You may buy An Unlikely Marriage
on Amazon by CLICKING HERE
About Linda Carroll-Bradd:
As a young girl, Linda was often found lying on her bed reading about fascinating characters having exciting adventures in places far away and in other time periods. In later years, she read and then started writing romances and achieved her first publication--a confession story. Married with 4 adult children and 2 granddaughters, Linda writes heartwarming contemporary and historical stories with a touch of humor from her home in the southern California mountains.
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