Author Charlene Raddon is taking over the blog today as part of the Fall #RomanticTravel exchange to talk about her favorite place to visit and her book, Forever Mine.
Take it away, Charlene:
My favorite spot in the world is the Oregon Coast. In particular, a little village called Cape Meares. Nearby is the Cape Meares Lighthouse which is the location for my historical romance novel, Forever Mine, a mail order bride story set in 1891. The story was inspired by a wedding photo of a lighthouse keeper and his bride. In doing research for the book, I met that couple’s son, Old Hig and used his memories in the story.
A mail order bride from Cincinnati, Ariah Scott had traveled all the way to Oregon to marry one man…only to lose her heart to another in this steamy romance. What would become of her now? Ever since her father died at the hands of a vengeful relative, Ariah’s life had been shadowed by dark secrets. And now her forbidden desire for Bartholomew Noon filled her with uncertainty—and a secret longing that could never be fulfilled.
From the moment Bartholomew Noon saw Ariah standing alone in the Portland Station, the keeper of the Cape Meares Light was lost. Hopelessly in love with this angelic beauty who was fated to live beside him at the isolated lighthouse as another man’s wife, Bartholomew never dreamed that destiny would someday bring them together. Would Ariah truly be the woman he could cherish…forever?
All the passengers had disembarked, and most had already left the station. A young woman came from the station house and joined an elderly lady. He dismissed her at once as being too pretty to have to resort to an arranged marriage with a man she’d never met. She glanced around and bounced up and down on her heels with glaring impatience. When she turned his way, affording him a full view of her face, he sucked in his breath at its delicate beauty.
Burrowing into the shadow of an overloaded baggage cart, Bartholomew drank in his fill of her, the way an old seaman would guzzle a tankard of ale after too many months at sea. Her hair was the ordinary brown of a walnut shell. Her form, in a well-made traveling suit the color of hot house orchids, hinted of fragility. Her face was less than perfect, its shape too symmetrical, the skin too flawless, without even a smidgeon of character. As for the features, the brows were too thick, the nose too small and straight. And the mouth…. Good hell, that well-defined mouth with its tiny mole perched so enticingly at the tip of one rounded peak fairly begged to be kissed.
But, except for her mouth and the fresh, innocent sort of sensuality he sensed about her, he was at a loss as to explain her appeal. Then he heard the trill of her laughter, like the song of a bird—clear, resonant, alive—and he knew. Her face was animated, her hands quick and graceful in their gestures. She was a living, breathing advertisement for youthful enthusiasm. For life.
For the first time in more years than he cared to remember, he was glad to be alive.
Available from Amazon
About Charlene Raddon:
Charlene Raddon is the award-winning author of five historical romance novels set in the American West. She is also a cover designer for Silver Sage Book Covers.com.