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Damien Hathaway, clergyman, is no stranger to scandal.  Unfortunately, this last scandal  could cost him his life’s calling–ministering.

When heiress Lindsay Phillips  takes an interest in spiritual matters, Damien has no objections to teaching her. Even though  his heart is becoming attached to the woman, his disability keeps him from acting on those feelings. After all, no woman, rich or poor, would be interested in a cripple who couldn’t protect her.

The author, Ruth Axtell Morren,  puts a new twist on the marriage of convenience in her regency romance put out by Steeple Hill‘s inspirational romance line.  Enjoyable read.

Kathleen Fuller has written a delightful regency romance, my favorite choice for reading.


Since Michael Balcarris returned from university he no longer was the same man Emily Dymoke had been smitten with as a young girl. In fact, the change in him was quite ridiculous, so much so, Emily felt his very presence insufferable. No longer was he the young man who rescued her from a tree, but instead, a fop.

But Michael’s ridiculousness is all a clever disguise, thus the title of the book.

I enjoyed reading the book and couldn’t wait until Emily discovered Michael’s annoying behavior was nothing more than a ruse because of his profession.

I have just two criticisms of the book:

1-The prologue starts with Emily pursuing another man, Gavin. Maybe the prologue could have been from Michael’s Point of View as he watched Emily make a fool of herself with this man who does not feel for her. Had it been from Michael’s point of view, then I would not have assumed the main character was the man she was pursuing. Michael did not appear until page 12 which I suppose is not too far into the story, it just threw me just a little.  (So, who am I to criticize another writer? After all, I am unpublished and this author is published. She obviously is far more advanced than I am).

2-Avalon books are expensive. I wish they were cheaper because I would love to sign up for a subscription to a service much like the Harlequin system. But to their credit, the books are all hardbacks which is nice for the bookshelf. Check your library to see if they can order a copy.

Despite my confusion in the very beginning, I loved the book and I read it in one sitting.

This is now my chosen form of exercise.

I found an English country dance group in Durham. I didn’t realize how much I would enjoy it.

And it is great research!

Visit this site to read one of Jane Austen’s Prayers.

I haven’t read this book yet, but I had seen it in the Christian Book Distributors catalog and thought it might be interesting. I reserved a copy at the library and they called when it was available this week.

Because my husband works closer to the library than I do, I sent him to pick it up for me.

That was three days ago and HE has already finished reading it.

He said it was a great story and he liked the characters. He likes character-driven books even if he doesn’t know the exact term for it.

The book is set in Regency England. I’m trying to write an Regency now.

I wish I could spend today reading the novel. But I need to write.

Since my post today is courtesy of my family, I’ll tell you what my son wants to be when he grows up: The first Doctor/Lawyer/Trumpet player in space. It could happen, I suppose.


What is the book about:

Charlotte Lamb, a fallen vicar’s daughter, hopes to secret herself away in London’s grim Milkweed Manor. But once there,she is mortified to find herself in the care of a former suitor, a physician whom her father long ago rejected as unsuitable, a man who now hides secrets of his own. Both are determined, with God’s help, to protect those they love. But neither could guess the depth of sacrifice that will be required of them.

At some point in time we all get rejected by someone, whether it is by a book editor, a literary agent, a job interviewer, a love interest, etc.

I’ve been rejected multiple times for my book manuscripts. See my post Missing the Mark on my first rejection.

Don’t get discouraged about rejections. It doesn’t mean you won’t have a second chance. I was given a second chance by that same publisher in 2007 at the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference.

I sat down with Nick Harrison from Harvest House (my first rejection) for a 15 minute pitch of my ideas. He asked to see a sample of my writing.

Just before leaving for the conference I stuffed in my bag three chapters of one of my works in progress, so I handed him those pages. This had not been run by any critique partners so it was a rough draft. I should have been embarrassed to hand it to him.

He read the first page and turned to the next. I’ve heard many times that editors know from the first page whether it is something they are looking for in a manuscript, so I was thrilled. Then he turned the next page and the next. He asked a question about the plot of the story.

Then he said, “You’ve broken one of the cardinal rules of writing.”

My heart sank. I wondered what I did wrong.

He said I didn’t lead with the protagonist, but that I did it well.

I broke a major rule in writing fiction, but I did it well! I couldn’t have been more flattered.

He wasn’t interested in that story, but wanted to know if I had others. And boy did I. He probably regretted asking that question. I turned my notebook toward him where I had written down about 50 book ideas — all in various degrees of completion, some just a one sentence idea.

He wanted me to send him my Regency proposals. Unfortunately, those were the one sentence ideas.

I came home and worked on a contemporary piece that I had gotten some interest from other editors at the conference and was subsequently rejected by them.

An opening paragraph for the regency came to me one day so I wrote it down and haven’t stopped writing on it yet. I have written 75 pages on it and hope to write 15 pages today. See my post Writing the Breakout Novel.

I heard Mr. Harrison will not be attending the conference this year, so I plan to get it completed before the conference and send it to him. I think he is my dream editor.

The point of this blog is to say that you may be rejected, but keep working.

In all liklihood I’ll be rejected by Harvest House again, but that will not stop me from sending in my story, Absalom’s Beauty.

Note: How did I start the book where I broke a cardinal rule of writing? Here is the first sentence:

“Will you be my Daddy?”

(and believe it or not, this is a military/suspense/romance)

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