Original Title: Moving On: A Prairie Romance
Author: Annette Bower
Publisher: XoXo Publishing
Published Date: January 1st 2012
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Anna is a mysterious woman that has just moved to Regina Beach. The residents of the small town know everyone’s business and they are very interested in discovering Anna’s secrets. Nick was a Sergeant in the Canadian Army, doing active duty until a horrific accident sent him home to recover. He helps Anna feel safe and comfortable in her new environment, just as he has always done for his men in strange, dangerous places. Meanwhile, he focuses on preparing for his future physical endurance test to prove that he is capable of returning to active duty.
Anna doesn’t talk about her past, and Nick doesn’t talk about his future therefore she is shocked to discover that his greatest wish is to return to active duty. She won’t love a man who may die on the job again. Intellectually, she knows that all life cycles end, but emotionally, she doesn’t know if she has the strength to support Nick.
While Nick ruffled the beast’s fur, Anna’s ears were accosted by barking ecstasy. Her cheeks flushed. No animal should enjoy its master’s touch that much.
Nick approached the door with the dog at his side. Anna jumped backwards. “Don’t come any closer!”
His brow furrowed while he peered through the mesh. “Molly won’t hurt you. She’s as gentle as a lamb.”
“That’s what every dog owner says, even after the animal has mauled you. Of course, after blood’s flowing, then it’s the victim’s fault.”
His fingers curled around the collar of the black beast, Molly.
“Molly has never bitten anyone.”
“I’ll bet she chases rabbits.”
“She’s an animal.”
“Exactly my point.”
With his hand on the door latch, “What’s the worst that can happen? You lose a hand. You already know all about missing limbs.”
“Do I look foolish to you?”
His eyes held hers. His voice was calm. “No, but you don’t have to be afraid.”
Anna stepped closer to the door. “I won’t come out. She can smell my hand from here.” Anna placed her hand against the mesh. Molly looked from the hand to the pizza container and back to the hand just inside the door. She nudged the pizza container with her nose.
The dog turned and looked up at Nick and sat at his side.
He put his fingers through the royal blue collar. “City people come out to the country and want to lock and tie everything up. Animals need to run. I’ve got her collar.”
Adventures in my own back yard
By Annette Bower
By Annette Bower
Thank you, Vidya for hosting me on your blog today. Books are magic and I’d like to talk about how I used my lucky life opportunity of living in a small community to inform my book, Moving On A Prairie Romance.
“Anna Jenkins pushed her foot on the brake as her hatchback picked up speed on the hill. The posted speed limit for the Town of Regina Beach was forty km/hr. She passed old cottages with verandas and gravel driveways surrounded by blossoming lilac bushes that were tucked in among new homes with steel doors and trees with spring green leaves shading designer interlocking block paths. Her doubts about moving to a small town washed in her fatigued mind like the waves pushing and pulling along the shore of Last Mountain Lake, that expanse of blue where the road she was on ended. Just past noon and no one was on the street.” (Moving On A Prairie Romance p. 1).
For many years my husband, sons and I lived in the Town of Regina Beach and when I chose a place to set my story about Anna and Nick, this small resort town in the Qu’Appelle Valley, located on the shores of Last Mountain Lake in Saskatchewan was the perfect place. Because this active lakeside resort town became a different community in the summer than it was during the other times of the year, it paralleled the dichotomy of Anna and Nick’s challenges and their hope for their futures.
In the story a secondary character, Herman comments to Anna: He turned to watch a fishing boat troll along the shore. “You know, with only one road into town and that same road ends at the lake, you came here either on purpose or by mistake.”
I was an urban woman until we moved to the place where my husband spent the weekends and summers of his youth. I didn’t know how to be in the small village with the population of four hundred and eighty-eight people when we moved into our home and we were expecting our first child. I enjoyed the friendliness of all of the people and I had the cache of being part of an old established family because of my husband’s family, but that also brought along the responsibility to become an active member of the community.
My husband’s career took us from Regina Beach to Winnipeg, Manitoba. I had grown used to going into the post office, grocery stores, coffee shops and knowing people. In Winnipeg, I chatted with the cashiers at the Canadian Tire Stores, the butcher shops and I formed my first TV series friendship with “Ria who searches for that "something more" in Butterflies” a British sitcom written by Carla Lane. A friend even gave me a bumper sticker that said, “I may be slow but I’m ahead of you” because I was used to driving slowly. Our family made long lasting friendships but we wanted to return to our Regina Beach community, friends and our family, so we did for many more years.
Even though we have moved from Regina Beach once again, I knew I could write about the community with intimate knowledge. The houses and characters are a composite of houses and people in the area and my imagination. Knowing my landscape provided a measure of certainty and allowed me to focus on the other elements of my story. I also know that many readers live in small communities where your neighbors know what is happening and therefore they can relate to my setting and my characters.
I invite readers to visit the Town of Regina Beach, Saskatchewan, Canada through my pages and share Anna and Nick’s story.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Annette Bower lives and writes in Regina, SK Canada. She is an author of many short stories published in anthologies and magazines in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. She explores women in families, women in communities and women at the beginning and end of love and their quest for love. She pursues the writing craft in workshops, conferences, Writing with Style, Banff Centre for the Arts, Victoria School of Writing, Sage Hill Writing Experience, the Surrey International Writing Conferences and the Romance Writing of America Conferences.
When she isn’t writing she walks or bikes around the streets and parks in her neighborhood imagining complex worlds behind seemingly ordinary events.
Her first contemporary romance, Moving On A Prairie Romance is published by XoXo Publishing™ a division of Ninni Group Inc.
Annette will award a $25 GC to All Romance eBooks to one randomly drawn commenter.
So, all you have to do is comment in this post. Giveaway open INTERNATIONALLY! Ends May 11th 2012!
*** This post is part of the tour for Goddess Fish Promotions. ***