First, my latest column is up over at Romancing The Blog. Go forth and read! Leave comments!
In reading news, I'm working on a new book called A Patchwork Family by Charlotte Hubbard. This is a July western that flew under my radar because Leisure is marketing it as an "Inspirational Romance." Sure it's a western and inspirational - but romance? Not yet anyway. It's more of what I would call a "saga."
The hero and heroine are married. They run a way station in Kansas that serves folks traveling west on the stage coach. It is a good marriage, but the Lord hasn't seen fit to bless them with children. Then two orphans show up and the couple agrees to take them in. Their mother ran off with a dandy while the children were using the privy along the stage coach route. The young boy is naturally sweet as pie, while the older sister is a shrew in training.
This isn't a romance. It's not even a marriage in trouble book. It reminds me a lot of those multi-part sagas that were so popular during the 1970s and 1980s. Hubbard plans more books in the series following the lives of the various children (yes, more are on the way) - which I suspect might read more like romances.
That isn't to say this book isn't pleasant. It is. I should have no problem zipping through it in a couple of days. Will I follow the other books in the series though? Jury is still out.
Now for the shock - Charlotte Hubbard is also Melissa MacNeal! Melissa MacNeal, she who wrote a few books for Black Lace. I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that they are the same writer. The MacNeal book I read was smut-er-ific complete with over-the-top sex and soap opera plot. The Hubbard book is sweet, wholesome stuff complete with characters who have a strong sense of Faith.
It would be like finding out that Janette Oke and Thea Devine are the same person. Which, for the record, they're not. But the comparison is a good one.