CUSTOM-MAKING A COWBOY?

Ohhhh, I’m so excited about Custom Made Cowboy By Dee Burks! This book is funny and sexy and very romantic. Plus…it’s Christmas-themed. Everything you want in a good romance. I tell you, if I could put Trampas Woodburn under a tree….well, delicious shivers run up my spine just thinking about it. Lean and rugged, he’s one hot cowboy with a killer grin.

I’m giving away three Kindle copies! Just leave a comment to enter the drawing.

* * * *

The cowboys of Moreno Valley, New Mexico, can melt rocks with just one ‘aw shucks’ smile. They like their women strong, spirited and independent and that includes ex-rodeo star Trampas Woodburn. Tired of gold digging rodeo queens, he’s ready to hit the reset button on his life as a custom spur maker but the last thing he planned on this holiday season was running into Angie Martin.

Angie has worked hard the last three years to make a go of her little art studio in the mountains of Northern New Mexico and has better things planned for her life than hooking up with a use ‘em and lose ‘em cowboy who wouldn’t know good art if it bit him in the butt. But when faced with the prospect of teaming up with Trampas or being homeless, she commits to enduring the Cowboy Heartthrob just until she gets her art studio in the black or until spring, whichever comes first.

As their awkward truce smolders into a raging fire, Angie discovers that maybe this cowboy is one worth taking a chance on. Trampas is all about keeping it light, but life can catch you off guard and a woman like Angie can turn a man’s mind toward home, family and the future.

When an emergency ripples through the families in the valley it becomes clear to all how very precious life is. Now Angie and Trampas must each decide whether to hold on to their own paths, and old fears, or take a chance and forge a new life together that may be more than either of them dare to hope for.

EXCERPT

He dropped his hand. Well, this wasn’t getting off on the right foot at all. Still, he continued to smile and shrugged. “I prefer craftsman. I make custom spurs.”

“Spurs?” She spat the word like a bad Brussels sprout. “You mean like those metal things that go on boots?”

He nodded.

She huffed as if it was the most ridiculous thing she’d ever heard. “Why would Larry do that? He said you were an artist, so I thought . . .” She looked him up and down and then jerked her sweater tighter around her waist. “Doesn’t matter what I thought, I guess. It’s just too much to ask for this year.”

He wasn’t quite sure what to say to that. Ask who? Santa? It seemed to him she might be on the permanent lump of coal list. She obviously had issues. He’d heard one of his sisters say something about being on some kind of meds herself for hatefulness. Maybe this woman should be asking Santa for some of those.

* * * *

About Dee:

Dee Burks is a bestselling author who brings to life today’s true west with feisty heroines and heart melting cowboys. A multi-generational Texan, she now lives in the gorgeous mountains of Northern New Mexico infusing all her settings with authenticity of the southwest while crafting love stories spicier than the hottest green chili!

Her favorite pastime is writing as the snow falls over the Sangre De Cristos, hot cup of coffee on the desk and sweet pup Charley at her feet.  When not writing, she travels the west collecting ideas and indulging her passion for fly fishing.

* * * *

What are you going to ask Santa for this Christmas? Go crazy. Leave a comment for one of 3 Kindle copies. 

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Rose of Cimarron

Sometimes teens in the old West, just as today, had some wild oats to sow. You just never think about girls doing it back in the 1880s. Yet, this one became famous for it.

Rose Ella Dunn was born Sept. 5, 1878 in Indian Territory at Ingalls, Oklahoma. She was the only girl among five brothers. That was probably the problem right there. They taught her to ride, rope, and shoot. The boys had formed their own outlaw gang by the time she was just twelve years old. I’m not sure what their parents must’ve thought of that.

A few years passed and when she was fourteen or fifteen, her brothers introduced her to outlaw George “Bittercreek” Newcomb.

She became very infatuated and Bittercreek called her his Rose of Cimarron. She was very striking and had a kind demeanor. Bittercreek was a member of the Doolin/Dalton gang and they were extremely protective of her.

Rose would go into town for supplies and whatever the gang needed, plus bring back news. It was a good system.

For some reason, maybe they got religion or something, her brothers disbanded their gang and started bounty hunting, having pretty good success–given as how they knew most the gangs and how they operated. I’m sure that made everyone on the lawless side a bit nervous.

On September 1, 1893, the gang was in the saloon in Ingalls, Oklahoma when they found themselves surrounded by a posse of U.S. marshals. A hail of bullets rained down on them. The outlaws exchanged fire and made a run for it.

Bittercreek was struck down in the street but managed to pull himself to cover. Rose watched it all from a nearby hotel, filled with horror. She ran to him with two belts of ammunition and a Winchester rifle and hunkered down next to him.

(That’s George Bittercreek Newcomb on the right.) No prize for sure.

Rose fired the Winchester at the marshals while Bittercreek loaded his revolvers. Finally, with her help he was able to escape.

Three deputy marshals lay dead. On the gang side, several were badly shot up. Rose hid out with them, nursing them back to health.

By 1895 Bittercreek had a $5,000 bounty on his head and was wanted DEAD OR ALIVE. That caught the attention of her brothers. Loyalty didn’t amount to much when that much money was involved.

The next time they came to visit at the house, the brothers were waiting. They shot Bittercreek and the outlaw with him as they dismounted, killing them both.

Rose was never prosecuted for her involvement with the gang and her life of crime ended. She married a local politician until her death at the age of 76. I could find no record of any children.

So, was she just a rebellious teenager? Or an outlaw? She certainly had some good teachers in her brothers. Let’s have a discussion.

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I Have Some Winners!

Oh my goodness, what a week! I went up to Kansas with Jodi Thomas and talked to libraries. It was great. Spent some time with Tonya Lucas and that thrilled my soul.

But you don’t want to hear about that.

Okay, the random winners for the giveaway this week are:

CHERYL C

MICKEY POWER

LOIS IMEL

QUILT LADY

LORI HAUSER

Congratulations, ladies!! I’ll contact you for your preference of either paperback or ebook.

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Texas Has a New Outlaw

I’m just astounded at the attention To Marry a Texas Outlaw (Book #3 Men of Legend) is getting. Reviewers are loving this book as well as the early readers. So I wanted to blog about it again and giving away (3) more copies. All you have to do is leave a comment to get in the drawing.

Outlaw Luke Weston survives by his wits. Everyone in Texas is hunting him–lawmen, bounty hunters, and men looking to make a name for themselves. The last thing he needs is to go looking for more trouble. But when Luke stumbles across a fiercely beautiful woman left bound and gagged in the middle of the prairie with a wagon nearby from the Lone Star Ranch, it’s obvious that trouble has found him.

Truth be told, he never could resist a damsel in distress.

Josie Morgan’s distressed, all right—and hopping mad. She has no idea why she’s been kidnapped…or who she is…or why her body melts for the mysterious gunslinger who saved her life. But as the lost memories come tumbling back together, Josie is faced with the stark reality of why she and Luke can never be…even as her heart is telling her she will always be his.

Here are some lines from the book:

She was wild, adventurous and bold–everything that Luke wasn’t. And he wanted her. Oh God how he wanted Josie Morgan.

* * *

Luke closed the door but stood there lost in thought, wrestling with himself, wondering if Josie knew he’d sell his soul for another night with her.

* * *

Suddenly, she had an overwhelming urge to abandon the search for her past. To find answers could mean she might lose Luke Weston forever…and he was not something she could ever give up….Not now. Not in this lifetime.

* * *

The kiss was hot and needy, and he didn’t apologize for the sudden roughness. Hunger for her consumed him with all the fierceness of a summer storm. He stood unmoving in its path, facing the furor.

* * *

She didn’t know he’d move heaven and earth to spend just one night in her arms. Better for her that she didn’t. Better for everyone. This way, no one would get hurt when he said good-bye.

* * *

“Dios mío. Lady, someday when I get all this mess straightened out and I know for sure you’re free, I’ll take you somewhere private.” Luke’s voice was hoarse and raw. He rested his hands at Josie’s small waist above the low-slung gun belt and vowed, “I’ll light a fire inside you and make slow, steamy love until the stars fall right out of the sky and the world disappears.”

* * *

Here’s what some people are saying…….

“Broday’s gritty depiction of the Texas frontier will strike a chord in the hearts of fans who long for proud, rugged cowboys and strong-willed women.”  ~~ Romantic Times 4 Stars

“A gunslinger who’s better than he thinks he is; a lovely amnesiac; a young, wannabe gunslinger; an abused boy; a scruffy dog; and a sadistic killer make the third book in Broday’s outstanding family saga, Men of Legend, an unforgettable journey through the Old West.” ~~ Booklist *Starred Review*

“This is one author that knows how to tie you in knots keeping you on the edge and making you smile through it all. She gives you death and heartbreak as the west is known for with plot that pulls you in. I couldn’t put this down and had to know what was going to happen next. I just love the men of legend each one took a piece of my heart as I closed the book and let the meaning of their story sink in.”  ~~ Cyn’s Reviews

“This densely plotted historical continues Broday’s tradition of well-realized, emotionally rich novels.” ~~ Publisher’s Weekly

To Marry A Texas Outlaw is a beautiful well written story from a new favorite author of mine. Historical westerns are a bit of a forgotten art, and I love that Linda Broday has brightened up this sub genre in romance and the way she writes these cowboys and ranchers and bad boys of sorts are sexy as all get out.”  ~~ Addicted to Romance

I love reviews. They can sure pump an author up when she’s struggling to get a story from her head onto paper. But the ones that slam the book, I quickly put them out of my mind. I don’t need to feel any worse. The good ones though…oh man, there’s nothing like them to reinforce the belief that you are a writer with skills and talent and you’re not near finished yet. I have to say that I get far more positive ones than negative. What does that mean? Maybe that God put me on this path for a reason. Maybe that I have staying power. And maybe that I have a lot more stories to tell. I don’t know but I love what I do. There is no better job on this earth for me and I’ll do it until I take my last breath.

Now….tell me which line from the book is your favorite? I have mine. I wonder if it’s the same as yours. Remember, I have three copes to give away.

 

 

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I Have Winners!!

Good morning, Ladies. The sun is shining in the Texas Panhandle. Hope it is where you are too.

Now for the drawing….Because I got so much response, I’ve doubled the amount of winners.

I hope that makes you happy. So……. Here they are:

THERESA WILSON

TONYA CHERRY

SARAH STUART

CHERYL LUCAS

JERRI LYNN HILL

MICHELLE REED

If you don’t hear from me, send me a note at linda (at) lindabroday (dot) com.

If your name is not listed, I’m giving away some more next week so come back.

 

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Get Ready – To Marry a Texas Outlaw!

I’m so happy, happy to FINALLY share TO MARRY A TEXAS OUTLAW with you!  It seems this third book that the story you’ve all waited so patiently for would never come. (A watched pot never boils.) I think you’ll find it well worth the wait. The book officially releases on November 7.

At last, Luke Weston has the location for the man who pinned a federal judges’ murder on him. He’s searched for Ned Sweeney for two long years and finally has his location. He only has a one-hour window before Sweeney goes underground again. He’s riding to Dead Horse Creek when he sees a woman bound and gagged underneath a scrawny tree and covered in blood. He’s torn about what to do but his honor won’t let him ride on.

The woman doesn’t know her name, where she belongs, or how she got there. But she’s mad enough to whip someone.

Deliverance Canyon is close by so he decides to leave her with Tally Shannon and the other woman hiding out and try out what happened to Rose. He calls her that because she needs a name and there’s a row of roses on her collar.

I often think of how scary it would be to wake up and not know who I was or where I lived. You would have no starting point or nothing to relate anything to. What would you talk about? I can’t imagine. But Josie somehow keeps her sense of humor and stays optimistic for the most part. She trusts the outlaw Luke Legend and feels safe with him.

As pieces of her life slowly start to emerge, she falls deeper in love with Luke. It’s at that point she begins to pray she never finds out who she is because she senses it will change things between them. Something tells her that her past is riddled with bad people. She has contentment in what she’s found with Luke and wants to cling to that.

Despite the seriousness of her situation, she is so funny and sweet and I love that. I think you will too. But that doesn’t mean she’ll be a doormat for anyone. She’s quite a fighter.

I think that’s what Luke likes most about her. She takes whatever is thrown at her and finds a silver lining.

This story is full of twists and turns and Luke will steal your heart—all over again. Will he clear his name and get to claim the Legend name? So many forces are working against him. You’ll just have to see. All I can say is you’d better hold on tight.

Many secrets are revealed, and love claimed. By the end of the book, Luke and the Legend family will forever remain etched in your memory.

In Texas some legends are born, some are made…and some are created by destiny.

My Question: If you had one last chance to find a murderer and become a free man or woman and claim what you want most in the world, would you stop to render aid? I’m giving away three copes of this book (your choice of format) so leave a comment.

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Poker Alice: Legend of the West

The Old West is filled with legends but none is more colorful than Poker Alice. Her real name was Alice Ivers and she born of privilege in 1851 in England. She attended an elite boarding school for young women until her family moved to Leadville, Colorado. There Alice met Frank Duffield, a mining engineer, and they were married.

Gambling was prevalent in the rough mining camps and Frank Duffield did his share. Alice often accompanied him to keep from staying home alone. Alice quickly learned she had an ability to read cards and took up poker and faro. When Frank died in a mining accident, Alice decided to put to use what she’d learned. Left alone with no means of support she turned to poker as a way to earn a nice living. It was certainly more respectable than prostitution.

Alice stood at 5’4” with blue eyes and lush brown hair. Decked out in her fashionable dresses, she was quite a sight for lonely miners. It was rare to find a “lady” in a saloon that wasn’t of the “soiled dove” caliber so they flocked to her. They quickly bestowed the nickname Poker Alice on her and she was in much demand. It’s rumored that she once broke the bank at the Gold Dust Gambling House in New Mexico where she won $6,000 in one night.

Sometime during this period she began smoking large black cigars. Some said it was quite a sight to see her in frilly dresses with a big cigar sticking from her mouth. Alice also took to carrying a .38 revolver and wasn’t a bit squeamish to use it. Her reputation grew and so did her pocketbook.

However, she was deeply religious and never gambled on Sundays. The lady did have her scruples it seems.

Alice traveled all over Colorado, New Mexico and South Dakota playing and sometimes dealing the game she loved. But it was in Deadwood, South Dakota that she met Warren Tubbs, a dealer. They married shortly after and homesteaded a ranch near Sturgis, South Dakota. Loving the quiet ranch life, Alice cut back on the time spent in gambling houses. She and Warren had seven children and it was one of the happiest times of her life.

But it wasn’t to last. Alice’s poker luck didn’t extend to husbands. Warren contracted tuberculosis and died of pneumonia in the winter of 1910. She drove his body 50 miles to give him a decent burial and pawned her wedding ring. Broke with children to feed, Alice again had to turn to poker to earn a living.

She hired a man by the name of George Huckert to take care of the ranch. He fell head over heels in love with Alice and asked her to marry him several times. Finally, Alice relented saying that it was cheaper to marry George than pay him all the back wages she owed him. The ink was barely dry on the marriage license before George died in 1913.

This time when Alice returned to the gambling halls she wanted to do more than be a patron. She purchased her own place and named the saloon “Poker’s Palace.” There she provided everything a lonely man required—liquor, gambling, and working girls. One night a drunken soldier went on a rampage in the saloon, breaking furniture and threatening the customers. Alice promptly took out her .38 and shot the man dead. She was arrested of course and thrown into jail, but at the trial she was acquitted on grounds of self-defense and released.

She lost her saloon though. Authorities shut her down and it seemed to take a lot of the fight out of Alice. A little while passed and Alice was now in her 70’s. Her beauty had faded and she began dressing in men’s clothing. She continued to run a house of ill-repute in Sturgis and was arrested many times for drunkenness and charged with being a madam. Finally, after repeated convictions she was sentenced to prison. Alice was 75. Taking her advanced years in account, the governor of South Dakota pardoned her. She died of complications from gall bladder surgery in 1930 and was buried in Sturgis, presumably beside Warren Tubbs.

According to the Legends of America website, Alice was said to have won more than $250,000 (3 million in today’s money) at the gaming tables during her lifetime and she never once cheated. One of her favorite sayings was: “Praise the Lord and place your bets. I’ll take your money with no regrets.”

Doesn’t this sound like a character in a romance book? Poker Alice was colorful and independent. She lived life on her own terms. When the chips were down, she didn’t ask for a handout—she went back to work. I really admire women like that.

Have you read any books or watched western movies where the heroine was unconventional, maybe working in a saloon or even owning one? Miss Kitty definitely springs to mind, but there are others. Cheryl St. John wrote The Bounty Hunter in which Lily Devine was the feisty owner of The Shady Lady. Great story.

I’m not giving away anything this week but next Monday I’ll post the release of To Marry a Texas Outlaw and will give some copies away.

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I Have a Winner!

Thank you all for coming to comment on Laura Ingalls Wilder this week! I loved what you said.

Winner of the $10 Amazon Gift Card is……………..

QUILT LADY

Yippee! Congratulations, Quilt Lady! I’ll get this to you.

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A Pioneer, A Teacher, A Writer

As most know, I’m an avid reader. Always have been. In my younger years I read all the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys… and then I found Little House on the Prairie. Oh my Lord, those books changed my life! I loved that series and how they fed my imagination. Those stories opened up a magical world for me.

Laura was born February 7, 1867 to Charles and Caroline Ingalls. (Yes, she used their real names in her books.) She came into the world in a log cabin in Wisconsin. She was one of five children—her older sister Mary; younger sisters, Carrie and Grace; and a brother Charles who died at nine months old.

When Laura was two years old, the family moved to Kansas and that began her trek across the territory. She described her early years as full of sunshine and shadow. The family’s frequent moves bear the blame for that. She barely got settled good and made friends only to have to start over in a new place.

Laura Ingalls Wilder schoolteacher, 1887. Found in the collection of Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum, Walnut Grove. Artist : Anonymous. (Photo by Fine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images)

Due to the numerous moves, Laura and her sisters taught themselves and were able to keep up whenever a school was available for them to attend.

She decided to teach school herself after Mary had to go away to a blind school and the family needed the extra income. Just fifteen years old, she accepted her first teaching position twelve miles from her family’s home.

Almanzo Wilder was a nearby neighbor and often went to pick Laura up from school. Over the course of those wagon rides, they fell in love and were married on August 25, 1885. She was 18 and quit teaching to help Almanzo.

Laura and Almanzo Wilder

In the winter of 1886, she gave birth to daughter Rose and in 1889, she had a son who died a month after birth. Tragedy struck again shortly after when Almanzo contracted diptheria. It left him partially paralyzed. Then their home burned to the ground in 1890.

They drifted from place to place for four years and finally settled on a 200 acre farm in the Ozarks of Mansfield, Missouri that they called Rocky Ridge. Times got no easier and they had to sell firewood to buy food.

Sometime in the 1910s, their daughter Rose became a reporter for the San Francisco Bulletin. She was the one who encouraged Laura to write. At first it was only articles and short stories about general farm life. She worked hard to develop her skill and found a little success.

Tragedy struck again. The Stock Market crashed in 1929 and they lost everything. Rose too. It was at this time that mother and daughter began to work on the Little House books. In 1932, Laura published The Little House in the Big Woods, the first of her 8 books and finally found success.

Charles and Caroline Ingalls

By the time she published the last one in 1943, she was 76 years old. Almanzo died in 1949 but Laura stayed on their farm, reading and responding to mail from readers. In February 1957, she passed from this life on their farm.

Daughter Rose Wilder Lane

The television series of Little House on the Prairie aired from 1974 to 1982. Children today love reading about Laura’s life, never guessing it’s all true.

Did you read the books or watch the TV series? What are your thoughts? Leave a comment to be entered in the drawing for a $10 Amazon gift card.

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I Have a Winner!

I’m sorry I’m a little with this drawing. It’s been a busy weekend. Thank you all for coming over to read my post about Lucille Mulhall. Such an amazing lady.

Winner of this week’s $10 Amazon gift card is………….

DEBRA GRIFFIN

Congratulations, Debra! I’ll drop you a note to check on your email address.

 

 

 

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