“Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies (Canadian Historical Brides Book 6)” by Suzanne de Montigny #Excerpt


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EXCERPT

Chapter Three

The Ferry

After Lea swallowed the last sip of her soup, she settled herself on the main deck, finding a seat as near to the window as possible. Tucking her suitcase under her legs, she glanced about to see how crowded the ferry was. If there weren’t too many people, she might have the entire row of seats to herself, a safeguard from lonely men looking for company. She relaxed when an old woman made herself comfortable beside her.

As they sailed away, the land behind them diminished, the greens fading to misty pale blues that disappeared into the haze. She watched the faint line grow thinner until water surrounded the vessel, lapping against the hull, only gray sky visible beyond. Lea’s pulse quickened as she remembered her mother’s worries. Could there still be U-boats left that haven’t heard the Armistice has been signed? No! Nap said it’s official—the war’s over, and if he says so, then I believe him. To convince herself of his words, she pulled out the stack of letters from her bag that he’d sent over the past year and filed through them until she found the one she was looking for.

My dearest Lea,


   I’m sorry I haven’t been by to see you for some time. You see, I wasn’t given leave, though we’ve been stationed close to Chatlineau a few times. We’ve been transporting POWs back to Germany from France and Belgium now that the armistice has been signed. You’d think it’d be easy work, but it’s not. It’s quite sad, really. These men are so thin and broken, and I worry, even though they’re the enemy, that they may not survive. My comrades say I shouldn’t concern myself after all the atrocities the Germans have committed, but aren’t all men equal? Weren’t they serving their country the same as we were? Don’t they have mothers and fathers who love them too?

Yesterday, I spoke to a German who told me, in broken French, that he had a wife and a four-year-old daughter waiting for him back home. I wonder if they’ll find him changed, the way his hands tremble and the way he starts at the slightest sound. He’s a haunted man. We weren’t the only ones hurt. It’s a terrible thing war, where decent men are forced to kill each other because of decisions made by political leaders.

One of our boys told me a touching story the other day. He said that one Christmas, the Allies near Vimy Ridge heard the Germans singing ‘Silent Night’. They were so moved, they joined in. Can you imagine? Germans and Allies singing together, each in their own language? Then a magical thing happened. Slowly, they all came out of the trenches, shook hands, showed pictures of their girls. Some even cried together. Others shared what small portions of food they’d received from back home. Then someone pulled out a ball, and they began playing soccer. Can you imagine? Soccer! But it all ended when they heard gunshot in the distance. Their brief Christmas was over. It was business as usual. They shook hands and then lowered themselves back down into the muck of the trenches and resumed shooting. My eyes fill with tears at the thought. What a terrible thing to befriend and kill your enemy on the same day.

But there is one good thing that has come from this war, my beautiful Lea, and that’s you. As I sat in the mud-filled, rat-infested trenches before the armistice, it was you who kept me going. I could survive the cold and damp, the trench foot, and the lack of food just by filling my mind with thoughts of you, your beautiful blue eyes, your dark hair, your charming accent. It gave me something to hope for—a future.

As always, I love you,Nap

Lea let out a sigh. Her little Napoleon! She never grew tired of reading his letters! At first his correspondence had related the latest news, but as they got to know one another—be it live or through mail—he began leaving small hints, choice words that indicated they might have a life together! The day came when Lea received a short note saying he’d drop by that night, that he had something important on his mind to discuss with her.

“I think this is it,” Lea had said to Mathilde in an excited whisper.

“What?” asked Mathilde, folding dried bed sheets, still checking for the telltale signs of lice—a slight blood stain—though many months had passed since the soldiers had spent the night.

“Napoleon is coming—tonight!”

“Tonight?”

“Yes, and I think he may ask me to marry him!”
Her sister’s mouth dropped.

“Marry him! You can’t be serious. You barely know him! He’s only been here a few times to see you.”

“Yes, but we’ve been writing back and forth. I know him well enough. He’s the kindest man I’ve ever met. He’s funny, he’s sweet, and besides, I would like to see these golden fields and blue skies he talks about.”

“But you don’t know what’ll happen between now and then. You could be a widow with a baby.”

Lea mulled her words over. It was true. She’d known three of the town’s girls who’d been furlough brides only to lose their husbands a few months later on the front.

“You can’t rush into these things,” said Mathilde. “And what if you marry him and then don’t fit into his world. Remember, you’re Belgian. And he’s asking you to move to Canada, an untamed country.”

Lea weighed the consequences of her decision, then replied. “Yes, but I love him.”

“But Lea…” Mathilde dug her hands into her hips and gave her a condescending look.
A timid knock at the front door brought an abrupt end to the conversation.

“It can’t be him already!” whispered Lea. She pinched her cheeks and bit her lips.

Her sister did a quick fold of the sheets and shoved them into the cupboard while Lea smoothed out her dress.

Papa opened the door.

Napoleon stood on the steps in full uniform, his chest pushed out. He reached up, took off his hat and smiled. “Good day, Monsieur Decorte.”

Papa turned and shot Lea an amused hint of smile. “Lea. Are you in the mood for Mr. de Montigny’s company? Or are you too tired today?” Without waiting for an answer, he said, “I think she’s too tired.” He made as if to close the door.

Lea rushed forward before her beau had time to flee from Papa’s wry sense of humour. “Of course I have time for Napoleon. Come in, come in.” She grabbed his arm and dragged him to the sofa where they sat side by side holding hands.

Napoleon looked uncertain.

No wonder! After what Papa just put him through.

They made small talk until dinner was served. When they sat down to eat, he barely touched the fish and potatoes Maman had prepared, wiping his forehead over and over again with his napkin and taking sips of water as though his mouth were dry.

When the dishes were washed and placed in the cupboard, Lea led him to the sofa again while everyone conveniently disappeared except Papa who made an occasional entrance to cast a wary eye on the couple.

“So the war is over now and as soon as we’re done transporting the POWs, I’ll likely be discharged,” Napoleon said after the older man left the room for the second time.

“Oh?” said Lea.

Nap cleared his throat. “Yes, and then I’ll be going home to Canada. I’ll join my father and brothers in Saskatchewan.”

Lea moved closer, hoping for an arm to encircle her. “I’ll miss you.”

“As I will you.” He slid his hand over her shoulder only to remove it again when Maman wandered in and began polishing the silverware.

Lea flashed her an impatient glare, but Maman ignored it and continued rubbing the cutlery until every individual piece shone before leaving.

“Tell me more about Saskatchewan. Have you applied to the government for your homestead yet?” She loved pronouncing the English word. It seemed so worldly.

“No, not yet. I’ll do that when I get home.” Napoleon’s face paled. “But I…I…I was wondering if…”

“Yes?”

Papa sauntered in and began sweeping the floor.

Napoleon let out a frustrated sigh and then changed the subject. “We’ve been lucky with the weather, haven’t we?”

“Yes, indeed,” replied Lea, throwing an angry look at her father.

Papa pushed crumbs into the dustpan and poured it into the trashcan, oblivious.

“It’d be nice to go for a picnic,” suggested Lea.

“Ah, yes, it would. We could pick up a baguette from the boulangerie, then take it to the park.”

“That would be lovely.”
The grandfather clock that stood in the corner of the room chimed. Ten o’clock.

“And we could get some fromage bleu too,” she added. It was getting late. If Maman and Papa didn’t leave them alone, Nap would never propose.

Papa cleared his throat and eyed Lea.

Lea hurled him a desperate glare, the effect obviously not working because he dragged a chair to the grandfather clock and began winding it.

On seeing his actions, Napoleon took in a sharp breath and stood up. “I’m sorry. I didn’t realize it was so late. I should be going.”

Lea’s heart fell. Her lips pressed together in a tight line as she walked Napoleon to the door.

He squeezed her shoulders, and cast a glance toward Papa, before saying, “I’ll be back as soon as I can. Maybe in a couple of weeks.” He kissed her cheek, then retreated into the night.

~~~~~~~~~~

Book Trailer

~~~~~~~~~~

Fields of Gold coverTitle: Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies

Author: Suzanne de Montigny

Genre: Historical Romance

French-Canadian soldier, Napoleon, proposes to Lea during WWI, promising golden fields of wheat as far as the eye can see. After the Armistice, he sends money for her passage, and she journeys far from her family and the conveniences of a modern country to join him on a homestead in Saskatchewan. There, she works hard to build their dream of a prospering farm, clearing fields alongside her husband through several pregnancies and even after suffering a terrible loss. When the stock market crashes in ’29, the prairies are stricken by a long and abysmal drought. Thrown into poverty, she struggles to survive in a world where work is scarce, death is abundant, and hope dwindles. Will she and her family survive the Great Depression?

 

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Author Bio

Suzanne de Montigy

Suzanne de Montigny loved writing stories as a child, creating her first novella at the age of twelve. She has kept it on her shelf between her textbooks and novels all her life. As an adult, she pursued a career in music education, teaching school for twenty years. It was there she discovered she had a knack for storytelling. When her father passed away in 2006, she developed an overpowering urge to begin writing again. She has received awards for her “Shadow of the Unicorn” series and her young teen novel, A Town Bewitched.

She lives in Burnaby, B.C. with the four loves of her life, her husband, her two boys, and Buddy the bichon frisé.

 

Links

www.suzannedemontigny.com

https://www.facebook.com/unicorngirl52

https://twitter.com/sfierymountain

http://suzannesthoughtsfortheday.blogspot.ca

https://www.amazon.com/Suzanne-deMontigny/e/B00B522CGW/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6765086.Suzanne_de_Montigny

 

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“Moon Shadow (Book 2 Auriano Curse Series)” by Patricia Barletta #TrailerBlitz


 

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Moon Shadow
Book 2: The Auriano Curse Series

Antonio d’Este, Duke of Auriano is ambushed by a highwayman just outside of Paris. Not only does the outlaw rob him of all his coin, the thief also snatches the magical moonstone which curbs the terrible, devastating cravings of the Hunger, a side effect of the family curse. Antonio is determined to find the thief no matter what, and take back what is his.

Solange Delacroix is forced to live two lives, as a ruthless highwayman and as the beautiful, seductive Madame de Volonté, who runs a salon of the demimonde and is mistress of the cruel Marquis de Vernoux. When she steals a moonstone pendant from the handsome stranger and he turns up at her salon seeking revenge and the stolen item, she must keep her life from toppling into a maelstrom of danger and death.

Antonio and Solange come together in a dangerous dance of secrets, thievery, and passion. Hounded by the evil sorceress Nulkana, threatened by the ruthless King of Thieves, menaced by the cruel Marquis de Vernoux, their safety hangs in a precarious balance. Only trust in each other will help them come out alive.

Purchase @: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Lachesis Publishing |

About Patricia

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. That was right after I realized that becoming a fairy ballerina or a princess wasn’t going to happen. But being a writer meant I could go places in my head and be other people as much as I wanted. I could even be a fairy ballerina or a princess! My stories have always had romance and history in them. I feel that one sparks the other. I’m not sure I’d really want to live in the past with no running water, take-out menus, flush toilets, hair dryers or antibiotics, but it sure is fun to dream. Besides, swashbuckling pirates and Regency men in their tight, buckskin breeches are hot.

I’m a native of the Boston area. Its history has inspired my writing, and probably influenced my decision to become a high school British Literature teacher so I could pay the bills. I’ve also been an accounts receivable clerk, a receptionist and telephone operator (before cell phones), head of an elementary school library, and president of a food pantry, not in that order. I received a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing degree in Popular Fiction at the fabulous Stonecoast program in Maine, where I met many talented writers, who encouraged me and made my writing better. And now I’m an author writing about dark heroes, feisty heroines, magic, and other fantastical things.

Author Links:

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“Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies (Canadian Historical Brides Book 6)” by Suzanne de Montigny


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Fields of Gold coverTitle: Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies

Author: Suzanne de Montigny

Genre: Historical Romance

French-Canadian soldier, Napoleon, proposes to Lea during WWI, promising golden fields of wheat as far as the eye can see. After the Armistice, he sends money for her passage, and she journeys far from her family and the conveniences of a modern country to join him on a homestead in Saskatchewan. There, she works hard to build their dream of a prospering farm, clearing fields alongside her husband through several pregnancies and even after suffering a terrible loss. When the stock market crashes in ’29, the prairies are stricken by a long and abysmal drought. Thrown into poverty, she struggles to survive in a world where work is scarce, death is abundant, and hope dwindles. Will she and her family survive the Great Depression?

Available September 19th!

~ P R E O R D E R ~

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Author Bio

Suzanne de Montigy

Suzanne de Montigny loved writing stories as a child, creating her first novella at the age of twelve. She has kept it on her shelf between her textbooks and novels all her life. As an adult, she pursued a career in music education, teaching school for twenty years. It was there she discovered she had a knack for storytelling. When her father passed away in 2006, she developed an overpowering urge to begin writing again. She has received awards for her “Shadow of the Unicorn” series and her young teen novel, A Town Bewitched.

She lives in Burnaby, B.C. with the four loves of her life, her husband, her two boys, and Buddy the bichon frisé.

 

Links

www.suzannedemontigny.com

https://www.facebook.com/unicorngirl52

https://twitter.com/sfierymountain

http://suzannesthoughtsfortheday.blogspot.ca

https://www.amazon.com/Suzanne-deMontigny/e/B00B522CGW/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6765086.Suzanne_de_Montigny

 

 

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“Always Come Home (Emerson Book 1)” by Maureen Driscoll

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“Always Come Home (Emerson Book 1)”

by Maureen Driscoll

Genre: Historical Romance/Regency/Holidays

Release Date: March 6, 2014

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From the author of the Kellington series of Regency romances, comes the first novel about the Emerson family.

Colin Emerson, the Earl of Ridgeway, has two unmarried sisters and a mountain of debt incurred by his late father. He has no choice but to marry an heiress. It is most unfortunate, therefore, when he falls in love with a penniless governess.

Ava Conway has been making her way in the world since the death of her father. She takes a position as the governess to Lord Ridgeway’s sisters, but finds her growing attachment to the earl threatens his family’s future.

Bound by honor, torn by love, can Colin do right by his sisters while following his heart?

WARNING: This book contains explicit sexual content and adult situations. You will not like this book if you don’t like either of those two things.

“Somebody’s Darling (The Gettysburg Ghost Series Book 1)” by Linda Fausnet

99¢ at the time of posting!


“Somebody’s Darling (The Gettysburg Ghost Series Book 1)

Genre: Historical Romance/Time Travel/Ghosts

Release Date: January 11, 2016

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**Please note that this is a paranormal romance story with explicit sexual content.**

Confederate soldier Jesse Spenser has fallen in love for the first time.
Lucy works in a tavern in Gettysburg and literally doesn’t know he exists.
That’s because Jesse’s a ghost. He died in battle 150 years ago…

As a spirit, Private Spenser can be invisible at will and has admired Lucy Westbrook from afar for months. He’s passionately in love with her, but won’t approach her because she’s terrified of ghosts. Besides, he’s dead. There’s no hope for a future with her.

Jesse’s immortal enemy, a Union soldier named Joel, boasts that any woman would pick him over Jesse. They choose Lucy for their wager. At first, she takes them for charming reenactors as they argue for her favor. However, it’s not long before she realizes that they’re dead.

After recovering from her initial terror, she befriends the two soldiers. She tries to help them cross over to heaven, and is even able to help the two enemies get along…sometimes. Though Joel is undeniably gorgeous, she falls hard for Jesse, with his sexy Southern accent and chivalrous manner.

When Jesse realizes that she loves him, too, he no longer wishes to cross over. Even though he can’t even touch his beloved Lucy, he cannot bear to leave her.

 

Jesse had died without ever having been with a woman. Will he get a second chance at love or be separated from his darling forever?

If you’re looking for tender romance with steamy, passionate love scenes, you’ll enjoy this first installment of the Gettysburg Ghost series!

“The Den Of Iniquity (Bastards of London, Book 1)” by Anabelle Bryant

99¢ at time of posting!


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“The Den Of Iniquity (Bastards of London, Book 1)

Genre: Historical Romance/Regency

Release Date: January 11, 2017

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Welcome to the most notorious address in London…

Beneath the airs and graces of the Ton lies The Underworld – London’s most scandalous gambling hall.

The only thing darker and more debauched that the hall itself? The proprietor, Max Sinclair. As mysterious as the corners of the city he stalks, Max has vowed to take revenge against the men who murdered his mother. And The Underworld attracts London’s darkest characters – the perfect partners in crime.

But when Lady Vivienne Beaumont enters The Underworld, Max’s life becomes more dangerous than he ever thought possible.


Anabelle began reading at age three and never stopped. Her passion for reading soon turned into a passion for writing and an author was born. Happy to grab her suitcase if it ensures a new adventure, Anabelle finds endless inspiration in travel; especially imaginary jaunts into romantic Regency England, a far cry from her home in New Jersey. Instead, her clever characters live out her daydreams because really, who wouldn’t want to dance with a handsome duke or kiss a wicked earl?

Though teaching keeps her grounded, photography, running, and writing counterbalance her wanderlust. Often found with her nose in a book, Anabelle has earned her Master’s Degree and is pursuing her Doctorate Degree in education. She proudly owns her addiction to French fries and stationery supplies, as well as her frightening ineptitude with technology. A firm believer in romance, Anabelle knows sometimes life doesn’t provide a happily ever after, but her novels always do. She enjoys talking with her fans. Visit her website at AnabelleBryant.com.

“Never and Always (Emerson Book 6)” by Maureen Driscoll

99¢ at time of posting!


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“Never and Always (Emerson Book 6)”

Author: Maureen Driscoll

Genre: Historical Romance/Victorian/Holidays

Release Date: December 19, 2016

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Return to the world of the Kellington and Emerson families in this Regency romance collection of three novellas.

Leticia Emerson, Violet Kellington and Anna Emerson have been friends most of their lives. Little did they know a visit from three Eton school boys would change everyone’s lives for the better.

Fifteen-year-old Lord Wesley Addington has just learned he has a half-sister, Lady Leticia Emerson. Over the next decade, Violet Kellington falls in love with the man who only sees her as his sister’s friend.

Lord Robert Carmichael has been all but abandoned by his family due to his pronounced limp, and he doesn’t want to pass on his affliction to a child. Though he is determined not to marry, Letty Emerson sees only the brave man who fought through the pain of his illness and the scorn of his family.

Scholarship student Mark Jones is torn between two worlds: the London stews he was born into and the peers who will never accept him. Anna Emerson, who has an English father and a Native American mother, knows she has found her soul’s mate.

The book contains three intersecting novellas, touching on love, loss and acceptance. It revisits the Kellington and Emerson families, more than a decade after their stories concluded. It is a love letter from the author to the two families which have meant so much to her.

There are, of course, graphic sexual scenes, but surprisingly not that many of them.

~~~~~~~~~~

Maureen DriscollDanielle Fishel calls Maureen Driscoll her “most favorite author of all things naughty and delicious.”

Maureen is a television writer based in Los Angeles whose credits include MADtv, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and Nickelodeon’s BrainSurge.  She was also a former recipient of a Walt Disney Studios screenwriting fellowship, where she wrote a romantic comedy based on her rather painful divorce.  The script didn’t make it to the big screen, but it did teach her a few things about happily ever after.

Before moving to Hollywood, Maureen spent nearly a decade working on Capitol Hill.  Her Dating Geroge Clooneynovel Dating George Clooney is a political satire inspired by those years.

She has written two Regency Romance series, one centered on the Kellington family and the other on the Emersons.  She is launching a third in 2017 called the Jasmine Cottage series and has also written a time travel romance set in America in the 1920s called The Tycoon Murderer, to be released later this year.  She can be found occasionally on Twitter at @MaureenDriscoll, slightly more frequently on Facebook at Maureen Driscoll Author and almost never on her blog at MaureenDriscollRomance.wordpress.com.

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