Today, I thought it might be fun to talk a bit about my latest Heartwarming release, Sweet Mountain Rancher, the second book in my “Those Marshall Boys” series…stories that feature the raised-like-brothers cousins. As young’uns, these blond, blue-eyed cowboys’ caused so much that the mere sight of them prompted friends and family to spout “Put up the good china…here come those Marshall boys again!” As grown men, however, it was the Marshall boys people turned to in times of trouble.
A LOT OF COMPONENTS go into the development of a soul-stirring, page-turning romance novel.
A ‘WISH I WAS THERE’ SETTING. This series is set on The Double M, a rambling ranch just outside of Denver. The ranch has been owned and run by the Marshalls since the 1880s, when the heroes’ twin great-grandfathers claimed a thousand sprawling acres in the shadow of the Rockies’ Front Range. Over the decades, the Marshalls survived brush fires, tornadoes, Anthrax, grizzly bear and cougar attacks, and with each incident, they grew stronger and more united—individually, and as a family. (Every one of my series novels stands on its own, so you never need to worry about reading the books in order!)
MEMORABLE CHARACTERS…believable, realistic people that readers can identify with.
IN BOOK ONE, Once a Marine, I introduced you to Zach, former Marine whose homecoming is tarnished when his sister is mugged and beaten. Knowing that a few simple self defense moves might have prevented the attack, he moves to Vail to care for her, and opens the self defense studio, because, well, that’s the way Marshall guys roll!
NATE MARSHALL IN SWEET MOUNTAIN RANCHER, you’ll meet Zach’s younger cousin NATE, whose fun-loving, easy-going personality made it tough to say no to kids who asked him to autograph baseballs—or the fiancé who insisted she could handle his fancy new sportscar on that awful, rainy night.
WE ALSO NEED EXCITEMENT AND ADVENTURE that’s woven seamlessly into the story so it doesn’t feel staged, episodic, or gratuitous. Like the fiery car crash that took Nate’s fiancé and ended his major league pitching career in one blinding flash…and changed him into a serious, never-say-yes man.
THEN, WE NEED A REASON TO HOPE … the kind of that makes us reach for the stars, and take chances that promise those sought-after happy endings…even though they could just as easily deliver more heartache and despair.
For Nate, hope comes in the form of child psychologist EDEN QUINN and the troubled boys in her care, who teach Nate that being agreeable doesn’t always come with a hefty price tag. Eden learns a few life-changing lessons, too: Part of being independent and self-sufficient is knowing when to accept a helping hand.
Finally, we need an ending that satisfies readers’ happily ever after hopes. But a fulfilling ending isn’t as simple as a romantic proposal, a teary-eyed acceptance, and a whirlwind wedding. The most memorable stories prove that the hero and heroine were willing to change and grow and make a few sacrifices to prove “till death us do part” vows.
I hope you’ll agree that Sweet Mountain Rancher delivers all that, and more, and that you’ll join “Those Marshall Boys” again in a few months, when I’ll introduce you to Zach and Nate’s youngest cousin, cowboy-turned-firefighter Nate, whose Nashville Dreams took him far from the family ranch…and into the arms of Finn Leary, who might just make his dreams come true…
Sweet Mountain Rancher? Then check back here on the Heartwarming blog this Friday when Cerella Sechrist (author of Harper's Wish) and I reveal the Red Carpet Edition of these two releases! We'll be hosting more giveaways, including signed copies of both Sweet Mountain Rancher and Harper's Wish!
And don't forget, there's only TWO DAYS LEFT to enter our Beach Reads giveaway for a chance to win a BRAND NEW KINDLE, cover, and all sorts of beach gear (including a beach tote, towel, water bottle, sunglasses, hat, and more!) You can enter to win right here at this link!
I look forward to seeing you back here on Friday when Cerella and I will be hosting the Red Carpet Edition of our monthly blog series, We Talk to Ourselves...a Lot!