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by author "LaVyrle Spencer" in All Categories
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Length: 16 hrs and 1 min
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When Sarah Merritt arrives in Dakota Territory in 1876, she steps off the dusty Cheyenne stagecoach determined to start this ramshackle gold-rush town's first newspaper. In Deadwood, her runaway younger sister, Addie, is living and working as domestic help at Mrs. Hossiter's boardinghouse, according to her letters. Five years after Addie's flight from home, Sarah is carrying the sad news that their one remaining parent, newspaper publisher Isaac Merritt, has died.
Eighteen years ago, Tess McPhail left her tiny hometown of Wintergreen, Missouri, for the bright lights of Nashville and never looked back. Now, one of country music's biggest stars, "Mac" is a hardworking woman with little time for a personal life - until her sister insists she come home to help care for their widowed mother. The welcome Mac receives is less than warm, especially from her former next-door neighbor Kenny Kronek. With a teenage daughter to raise, the handsome divorce refuses to give Mac the time of day.
Bess Curran, 40, is an interior designer in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, still lonely and bitter after her traumatic divorce six years earlier. Her adult daughter, Lisa, anxious for her parents to reconcile, arranges a surprise dinner meeting where she informs them that she is pregnant and about to marry. Bess and former husband, Michael (he left her for another woman, who, in turn, has just left him), can barely control their mutual animosity yet must come to grips with the startling news.
In town, they called her "Crazy Widow Dinsmore". But Elly was no stranger to their ridicule - she had been an outsider all her life, growing up in a boarded-up old house under the strict eye of her eccentric grandparents. Now she was all alone, with two little boys to raise, and a third child on the way. Will Parker drifted into Whitney, Georgia, one lazy afternoon in the summer, hoping to put his lonely past behind him. He yearned for the tenderness he had never known, the home he'd never had. All he needed was for someone to give him a chance.
Lorna Barnett is tired of playing the role of "good girl" that her mother has always lived, and that high society prizes. It isn't until she meets Jens Harken that she realizes she yearns to be cherished for herself. Although Jens is a servant, his strength and intelligence put all the society men she's met to shame.
Linnea Bradenborg expects to find culture and excitement in Alamo, North Dakota, where she's recently been hired as the new schoolteacher. Instead, she finds a sparse little town in the middle of nowhere. Better yet, her train is met by a cantankerous wheat farmer named Theodore Westgaard who doesn't bother to hide his displeasure when he discovers that L. I. Brandenborg is a woman and not the man he was expecting.
Hoping to escape the shame of her street urchin's life in Boston, Anna Reardon plotted a desperate scheme - to become Karl Lindstrom's mail-order bride in the beautiful, dangerous frontier of Minnesota. A kind and gentle man, Karl forgave Anna for her deceptions. But there was still one burning secret she had to hide from him, knowing its revelation would destroy the love they had come to cherish.
It is 1916, and Roberta Jewett is surprised to find that her hometown of Camden, Maine, considers a divorced woman little more than a prostitute. Condemned by her mother and scorned by neighbors, she nonetheless perseveres in her struggle to forge a good life for her girls and herself. Embittered by her painful marriage to an unfaithful husband, she has no intention of being any man's victim again. So Roberta is taken aback to find the widowed carpenter Gabriel Farley has somehow found his way into her heart.
Confident and practical, Winn never imagined anything - or anyone - could overturn her perfect world and perfect wedding plans. But in a single passing moment, her heart told her otherwise. Joseph knew Winn's love was promised to another man, that he must hide his heartfelt passions. But he also knew that the heart doesn't lie: This was that love of a lifetime. They met at a spring wedding, only months before Winn's own. Were they carried away by the intoxicating spirit of the moment? Or was this the start of a love they would cherish forever?
Two brothers work a rich and bountiful land - and one extraordinary woman shares their lives. To Jonathan Gray, Mary is a devoted and giving mate. To Aaron, she is a beloved friend. But seven childless years of marriage have forced Jonathan to ask the unthinkable of his brother and his wife - binding the two people he cares for most with an act of desire born of compassion...awakening Mary to the pain of infidelity and to all the bittersweet joy and heartache that passionate love can bring.
Shattered by the loss of her husband, Maggie struggled each day to put her grief behind her. To be there for her teenaged daughter. And to face life again. When she returned to her Wisconsin hometown, she never expected to feel a spark of longing for her old high school sweetheart. Eric's marriage to a career-driven woman had left him childless and unhappy - he knew there had to be more to life than always wanting what you couldn't have. Seeing Maggie again filled him with hope. Maybe the answer to his dreams had just come to town.
Agatha was the picture of primness and propriety, but her green eyes could blaze with anger - or sparkle with humor. Scott was the picture of lazy charm and happy indifference to what others thought was right and wrong. They were enemies, then friends. Then the sweet innocence of a child opened their eyes and their hearts - and they were reborn in each other's arms by the soft, wondrous gift of love.