Thursday, January 23, 2014

Forward and Backward - For My Two Dearly Beloved Books, It Was The Other Way Around by Margo Hoornstra

Have you ever planned a wedding? It can be fun. It can be stressful. It's never dull.

My two most recent books Night Stars and Mourning Doves and Only If You Dare are part of the Dearly Beloved series from the Last Rose Of Summer line of The Wild Rose Press. All of the books had to revolve around a wedding, of course. What made this different, the hero and heroine could be anyone at all connected with the event.

There was one other requirement. Those two words - Dearly Beloved - needed to appear somewhere in the book. Since I wrote two books for the series, just for fun I made Dearly Beloved the last two words in my first book Night Stars and Mourning Doves and the first two words in my last book Only If You Dare.

First the blurbs, then the excerpts:

Two pasts riddled with grief come together to make one happy future.

Elyse Monroe may be her sister's maid of honor, but that doesn't mean she has to follow the bride's example and fall in love. Battle-scarred and weary from previous relationships, she has no desire to take a chance on another--no matter how many hints her little sister drops about the best man. Devastating life events have taken a toll on Eric Matthews. After losing his wife and unborn daughter, he's come home to heal. Serving as best man at his kid brother's wedding is the only relationship he cares to contemplate--no matter how attractive the maid of honor. Thrown together again and again by wedding duties, Elyse and Eric reluctantly agree to explore a possible relationship--only to have their casual date turn into a glorious night of passion. Can two hearts, convinced a happily ever after will never happen, recognize love when it finds them?

Now the excerpt:

As it had from the very first time Elyse saw it, the beauty of Angela’s wedding dress truly took her breath away. A gorgeous collection of white beads, fine lace and elegant satin, its style too was off the shoulder and flowing. The floor length skirt draped in gentle folds to join a train in back of more beads, lace and satin. At Elyse’s suggestion, the gown was fitted where necessary to remind her groom of the woman beneath.

With all members of the wedding party assembled at the altar, Elyse couldn’t help but let her gaze fall on Eric. Then a little hand touched hers and she looked down to see Jay had come to stand beside her. Accepting the small fingers into her palm with a welcoming squeeze, an indescribable sense of warmth poured inside to wrap around her heart.

Glancing across the aisle, she met Eric’s loving gaze with her own and silently vowed to never let him go. Another surge of love rose up in her to overflowing and, at that exact moment, the ceremony began.

“Dearly Beloved—”

She had no business stoking a fire she never should have started in the first place.


All the pleasures and none of the pain, that's what Cynthia Buckingham wants in a relationship these days. A one-night stand with Jonah Colt seems to fit that bill perfectly. Newly divorced, she's too busy planning her daughter's wedding for any serious involvement. Besides, her true passion is helping victims of PTSD reclaim their lives.
Waking up after spending the night with a woman he barely knows, Jonah is stunned to realize sex for the sake of sex isn't enough for him anymore. A veteran of more military battles than he cares to count, he wants to forget it all and focus on peaceful civilian life. Except flashbacks won't allow it. Falling for Cynthia makes Jonah regret his weakened state, but he'd rather hide the truth than face it. When she sets aside everything she believes in to help him heal, can he accept her help--and her love?

Now the excerpt:

“Dearly Beloved...”

Cynthia Buckingham shifted to a more comfortable position on the well-worn wooden bench and did her best to ignore the wedding ceremony taking place in the next room. Confined to the mausoleum-like walls of a municipal courthouse, what type of nitwit public servant conducted a common civil proceeding as if officiating at St. Paul’s Cathedral?

Easy there. Tone it down a touch, a voice inside her head advised. You’re acting like an out of control bitch. Chin lifted at the internal rebuke, she executed a subtle eye roll then sniffed lightly before volleying a sharp comeback.

It’s not my fault I’m in a nasty mood.

She had darned good reason for being irritated, dammit. After being unfairly deprived of her personal liberty, forced to travel all the way downtown then—and this was the very worst—held against her will in an incredibly ugly, poorly decorated, cold and impersonal building.

For jury duty.

As they say, happy writing...and reading! (Under construction)


Jannine Gallant said...

I love Cynthia's internal monologue opening the second book. Here's to weddings and book sales--may they both end with a happily ever after!

Alicia Dean said...

Both of these stories sound wonderful. I love the fact that you ended one and started the other with 'Dearly Beloved' Nice touch and fantastic excerpts. I have one, for sure, maybe the other. Now I just need to read them!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Jannine, To weddings and book sales. Here! Here!

Alicia, Thank you. It's just kind of how my brain works. (Such as it is!) Hope you enjoy the reads.

Melissa Keir said...

I can't wait to read them! <3

Unknown said...

You incorporate two of my favorite romantic themes in your "Dearly Beloved" novels--weddings and tortured heroes. ::sigh:: I have both books in my "To Be Read" pile. Those excerpts just motivated me to read them ASAP! :)

Diane Burton said...

Great excerpts. Love how you connected the two books.

Leah St. James said...

Great concepts, both stories, Margo! I, too, love the way you used the phrase in both. And what romance reader doesn't love wedding stories? :-)

Loralee said...

Clever way to "begin and end" the two books, Margo. They both sound like wonderful stories.Congrats on two more winning romances!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Melissa. Thank you. Hope they meet your expectations.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Jolana. Always a good day when I can motivate you. Pay close attention to my Only book, since you were one of the minds involved in its plotting.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Diane. Thank you. It was kind of a fun thing to do.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Leah. With two married daughters, I've had a lot of practice in wedding planning. Great fun!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Loralee. Thank you, dear. Pleased you enjoyed my concept.

tqbrock11 said...

Great excerpts! I like the second one, especially, because my own wedding was in a courthouse. :)

Unknown said...

Both books sounds awesome! I already love your characters. Can't wait to read their stories!