Tag Archive | Romance

Welcome Guest Author Hildie McQueen

I’m pleased to welcome Hildie McQueen today. She’s here to share an excerpt from her new release. There’s a terrific giveaway, too! Here’s a little about Where The Four Winds Collide:

Where the Four Winds CollideAdeline Buckley escapes her abusive father only to find herself in a brothel, on a stagecoach to the untamed west and married to a stranger, all in that order. Plotting another escape becomes harder, the more she gets to know her new husband.

Jackson Pruitt didn’t expect a secretive mail order bride to show up the same week cattle rustlers absconded with a large part of his herd. The bigger surprise was the loveliness of the woman. Why would a beauty like her need to travel so far to marry?

Jackson and Adeline learn that secrets and marriage do not go hand-in-hand when both of their pasts comes knocking and both have to come to grips with the reality, that sometimes trust comes only after you lose it all.

~Excerpt and Giveaway~

This is your home now, Adeline,” Jackson told her, watching her closely for a reaction. “We were married earlier this afternoon. You are my wife.”
The color drained from her face and she froze, her spoon halfway to her mouth. He feared she’d faint again so he jumped up and went to her. The action startled the woman, who yelped and leaned away from him, only to topple over. Both she and the chair landed on their sides on the floor.
When Jackson tried to help her up, she scrambled to her feet and moved away from his reach.
“Married?” The shock in her voice made him wonder if the woman was mad. Surely she remembered signing the documents before the judge?
“Yes, Adeline, the judge explained it all to you before you signed the papers at the hotel. Do you not remember?”
“I…” her widened eyes met his and he fought the urge to reach out to reassure her. “I thought it was a dream.”

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Hildie McQueenHildie McQueen loves storytelling and unusual settings, pair that with humor and you’ve got an idea of what her writing is like.

She makes sure action, intrigue, and sizzling romance add up to a story, her readers won’t soon forget. Her favorite past-times are traveling, shopping and reading. She resides in beautiful small town Georgia with her super-hero husband Kurt and two unruly Chihuahuas.

Visit her blog at www.hildiemcqueen.com

Edgar Allan Poe – A Tribute

Edgar Allan PoeThree roses and a half-bottle of cognac – a fitting toast to the man who created a literary genre, contributed to the development of short stories as a literary form in American literature, and created macabre images that have spawned countless nightmares, influenced literature and served as the inspiration for . For sixty years, an unknown visitor (or perhaps, visitors), clothing positioned to obscure his identity, ventured out to Poe’s grave during the wee hours of the night to drink a toast and leave the flowers and liquor at his grave. Visitors from across the country journeyed to Baltimore to witness what had been an annual event from 1949 until January 19, 2010, when the  Poe Toaster failed to show. The Poe Toaster’s absence leads one to wonder if the Toaster has passed away, taking the mystery of his identity with him forever.

How fitting that the so-called Poe Toaster (and his conspicuous absence) should be shrouded in mystery.  Edgar Allan Poe was known for his literary mysteries and created the detective fiction genre decades before Sir Arthur Conan Doyle created Sherlock Holmes.  His life clouded by tragedy and cut short at the age of forty under mysterious circumstances from a cause that has never been determined, I imagine the man whose stories of horror and mystery changed American literature would have richly enjoyed the aura of mystery surrounding a simple bottle of cognac and a few cut flowers laid on his grave.

I’ve always been fascinated by Poe’s works such as The Murders in the Rue Morgue and intrigued by the notion that a modern day pro-football team, the Baltimore Ravens, bears a name inspired by a poem penned by Poe long before football became a national obsession. Poe’s works have inspired hundreds of movie and television works (he even has a page on the Internet Movie Database – not bad for a man who died in 1849), and I have to admit to enjoying corny Vincent Price movies loosely based on Poe’s works – in some cases, it seems only the title was used.  Poe’s death was as mysterious as his works, and he’d certainly experienced tragedy and heartbreak. I won’t bombard you with details on Poe’s life. Suffice it to say his life might have provided fodder for a melodrama. Orphaned as a young boy when his actress mother died and his actor father abandoned his family, he was taken in by a family that raised him but never adopted him. Eventually disowned by his foster family, Poe foundered at college and in the Army, lost a brother to alcoholism, and buried his young wife after two years when she succumbed to tuberculosis. By the time of his death, he was believed to be drinking heavily and exhibiting erratic behavior. Despite these woes, Poe harnessed his literary genius to create an enduring legacy.

He wasn’t a conventionally handsome man, but there was definitely a dark, penetrating quality to his eyes. Poe wasn’t tall (Army records list his height as 5’8” ), and he was definitely not the man to bet on in a bar fight. But his moody genius would have made him quite intriguing. And possibly quite passionate.

So, here’s my question – would a man like Poe have made the cut as a romantic hero? While the vast majority of romance heroes are undisputed alpha males, the beta male offers an undeniably unique appeal. Edgar Allan Poe could be considered a beta male. Intelligent, prone to star-crossed romance, the type of man to use a pen rather than a sword – just the kind of man a strong woman could engage in a battle of wits and claim lasting love as his victory…intriguing possibilities, indeed. It’s fascinating to imagine what might have happened if Edgar Allan Poe had met a woman who was his intellectual equal, and equally fascinating to consider the plot possibilities of a hero with Poe’s moody romanticism. Hmmmm…do I feel a story forming???

Author’s Note: This post is an update of a previous post by my literary alter-ego, Victoria Gray. Victoria writes American-set historical romance, but she’s on hiatus right now and assured me she wouldn’t mind if I reposted this tribute 😉