Country Brides: A Little Bit Country/Country Bride

( 29 )

Overview

Rorie Campbell has a pleasant, predictable life in San Francisco, where she's seeing a pleasant, predictable man. Then, one vacation, her car breaks down on an Oregon country road and horse rancher Clay Franklin comes to her rescue. Rorie soon discovers that a city girl can fall in love with a country man. But Clay has no right to return her feelings—because he's engaged to another woman.

Kate Logan is devastated when Clay Franklin, her former fiancé and the man she's always ...

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Overview

Rorie Campbell has a pleasant, predictable life in San Francisco, where she's seeing a pleasant, predictable man. Then, one vacation, her car breaks down on an Oregon country road and horse rancher Clay Franklin comes to her rescue. Rorie soon discovers that a city girl can fall in love with a country man. But Clay has no right to return her feelings—because he's engaged to another woman.

Kate Logan is devastated when Clay Franklin, her former fiancé and the man she's always loved, marries Rorie Campbell instead. But at Clay's wedding—and after a glass of champagne too many— Kate proposes to her longtime friend, rancher Luke Rivers. Luke accepts her proposal—and refuses to renege on his promise. What's more, he insists that Kate doesn't love Clay—she loves him—.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780778323624
  • Publisher: Mira
  • Publication date: 7/1/2007
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 464
  • Sales rank: 379,855
  • Product dimensions: 4.21 (w) x 6.62 (h) x 1.22 (d)

Meet the Author

Debbie Macomber

Debbie Macomber, with more than 100 million copies of her books sold worldwide, is one of today's most popular authors. The #1 New York Times bestselling author is best known for her ability to create compelling characters and bring their stories to life in her books. Debbie is a regular resident on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times (70 times and counting), USA TODAY (currently 67 times) and Publishers Weekly (47 times). Visit her at www.DebbieMacomber.com.

Biography

Publishing did not come easy to self-described "creative speller" Debbie Macomber. When Macomber decided to follow her dreams of becoming a bestselling novelist, she had a lot of obstacles in her path. For starters, Macomber is dyslexic. On top of this, she had only a high school degree, four young children at home, and absolutely no connections in the publishing world. If there's one thing you can say about Debbie Macomber, however, it is that she does not give up. She rented a typewriter and started writing, determined to break into the world of romance fiction.

The years went on and the rejection letters piled up. Her family was living on a shoestring budget, and Debbie was beginning to think that her dreams of being a novelist might never be fulfilled. She began writing for magazines to earn some extra money, and she eventually saved up enough to attend a romance writer's conference with three hundred other aspiring novelists. The organizers of the conference picked ten manuscripts to review in a group critique session. Debbie was thrilled to learn that her manuscript would be one of the novels discussed.

Her excitement quickly faded when an editor from Harlequin tore her manuscript to pieces in front of the crowded room, evoking peals of laughter from the assembled writers. Afterwards, Macomber approached the editor and asked her what she could do to improve her novel. "Throw it away," the editor suggested.

Many writers would have given up right then and there, but not Macomber. The deeply religious Macomber took a lesson from Job and gathered strength from adversity. She returned home and mailed one last manuscript to Silhouette, a publisher of romance novels. "It cost $10 to mail it off," Macomber told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 2000. "My husband was out of work at this time, in Alaska, trying to find a job. The children and I were living on his $250-a-week unemployment, and I can't tell you what $10 was to us at that time."

It turned out to be the best $10 Macomber ever spent. In 1984, Silhouette published her novel, Heartsong. (Incidentally, although Heartsong was Macomber's first sale, she actually published another book, Starlight, before Heartsong went to print.) Heartsong went on to become the first romance novel to ever be reviewed in Publishers Weekly, and Macomber was finally on her way.

Today, Macomber is one of the most widely read authors in America. A regular on the New York Times bestseller charts, she is best known for her Cedar Cove novels, a heartwarming story sequence set in a small town in Washington state, and for her Knitting Books series, featuring a group of women who patronize a Seattle yarn store. In addition, her backlist of early romances, including several contemporary Westerns, has been reissued with great success.

Macomber has made a successful transition from conventional romance to the somewhat more flexible genre known as "women's fiction." "I was at a point in my life where I found it difficult to identify with a 25-year-old heroine," Macomber said in an interview with ContemporaryRomanceWriters.com. "I found that I wanted to write more about the friendships women share with each other." To judge from her avid, ever-increasing fan base, Debbie's readers heartily approve.

Good To Know

Some outtakes from our interview with Macomber:

"I'm dyslexic, although they didn't have a word for it when I was in grade school. The teachers said I had 'word blindness.' I've always been a creative speller and never achieved good grades in school. I graduated from high school but didn't have the opportunity to attend college, so I did what young women my age did at the time -- I married. I was a teenager, and Wayne and I (now married nearly 37 years) had four children in five years."

"I'm a yarnaholic. That means I have more yarn stashed away than any one person could possibly use in three or four lifetimes. There's something inspiring about yarn that makes me feel I could never have enough. Often I'll go into my yarn room (yes, room!) and just hold skeins of yarn and dream about projects. It's a comforting thing to do."

"My office walls are covered with autographs of famous writers -- it's what my children call my ‘dead author wall.' I have signatures from Mark Twain, Earnest Hemingway, Jack London, Harriett Beecher Stowe, Pearl Buck, Charles Dickens, Rudyard Kipling, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, to name a few."

"I'm morning person, and rip into the day with a half-mile swim (FYI: a half mile is a whole lot farther in the water than it is on land) at the local pool before I head into the office, arriving before eight. It takes me until nine or ten to read through all of the guest book entries from my web site and the mail before I go upstairs to the turret where I do my writing. Yes, I write in a turret -- is that romantic, or what? I started blogging last September and really enjoy sharing bits and pieces of my life with my readers. Once I'm home for the day, I cook dinner, trying out new recipes. Along with cooking, I also enjoy eating, especially when the meal is accompanied by a glass of good wine. Wayne and I take particular pleasure in sampling eastern Washington State wines (since we were both born and raised in that part of the state).

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    1. Hometown:
      Port Orchard, Washington
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 22, 1948
    2. Place of Birth:
      Yakima, Washington
    1. Education:
      Graduated from high school in 1966; attended community college
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

"Help! Fire!" Rorie Campbell cried as she leaped out of the small foreign car. Smoke billowed from beneath the hood, rising like a burnt offering to a disgruntled god. Rorie ran across the road, and a black and white cow ambled through the pasture toward her, stopping at the split-rail fence. Soulful brown eyes studied her, as if the cow wondered what all the commotion was about.

"It's not even my car," Rorie said, pointing in the direction of the vehicle. "All of a sudden smoke started coming out."

The cow regarded her blankly, chewing its cud, then returned lazily to the shade of a huge oak tree.

"I think it's on fire. Dan's going to kill me for this," Rorie muttered as she watched the uninterested animal saunter away."I don't know what to do."There was no water in sight and even if there had been, Rorie didn't have any way of hauling it to the car. She was so desperate,she was talking to a cow—and she'd almost expected the creature to advise her.

"Howdy."

Rorie whirled around to discover a man astride a chestnut stallion. Silhouetted against the warm afternoon sun, he looked like an apparition smiling down at her from the side of the hill opposite Dan's car.

"Hello." Rorie's faith in a benign destiny increased tenfold in that moment."Boy, am I glad to see another human being." She'd been on this road for the past two hours and hadn't encountered another car in either direction.

"What seems to be the problem?" Leather creaked as the man swung out of the saddle with an ease that bespoke years of experience.

"I…I don't know," Rorie said, flapping her hands in frustration."Everything was going just great when all of a sudden the car started smoking like crazy."

"That's steam."

"Steam! You mean the car isn't on fire?"

The man flipped the reins over his horse's head and walked toward the hood of the sports car.It was then that Rorie realized the man wasn't a man at all, but a boy. Sixteen,or possibly a little older.Not that Rorie was particular. She was just grateful someone had stopped. "A friend of mine insisted I drive his MGB up to Seattle." She sighed. "I should've known that if anything went wrong, I'd be at a total loss about what to do. I should've known…"

The boy whipped a large blue-starred hankie from the hip pocket of his faded jeans and used it to protect his hand while he raised the hood of her car.The instant he did, a great white cloud of steam swirled up like mist from a graveyard in a horror movie.

"I…thought I'd take the scenic route," Rorie explained, frantically waving her hand in front of her face to dispel the vapor."The man at the gas station a hundred miles back said this is beautiful country. He said I'd miss some of the best scenery in Oregon if I stuck to the freeway."Rorie knew she was chattering,but she'd never experienced this type of situation before or felt quite so helpless.

"It's not only the best scenery in the state, it tops the whole country, if you ask me," the boy murmured absently while he examined several black hoses beneath the raised hood.

Rorie looked at her watch and moaned. If she wasn't in Seattle before six,she'd lose her hotel reservation.This vacation wasn't starting out well—not at all. And she'd had such high expectations for the next two weeks.

"I think you've got a leak in your water pump," the teenager stated, sounding as though he knew what he was talking about."But it's hard to tell with all that fancy stuff they got in these foreign cars. Clay can tell you for sure."

"Clay?"

"My brother."

"Is he a mechanic?" Rorie's hopes soared.

"He's done his share of working on cars, but he's not a mechanic."

Rorie gnawed on her lower lip as her spirits plummeted again. Her first concern was getting to a phone. She'd make the necessary arrangements to have the car repaired and then call the hotel to ask if they'd hold her room. Depending on how close she was to the nearest town, Rorie figured it would take an hour for a tow truck to arrive and then another for it to get her car to a garage. Once there, the repairs shouldn't take too long. Just how hard could it be to fix a water pump?

"How far is it to a phone?"

The young man grinned and pointed toward his horse."Just over that ridge…"

Rorie relaxed. At least that part wasn't going to be much of a problem.

"…about ten miles," he finished.

"Ten miles?" Rorie leaned her weight against the side of the car.This was the last time she'd ever take the scenic route and the last time she'd ever let Dan talk her into borrowing his car!

"Don't worry, you won't have to walk.Venture can handle both of us.You don't look like you weigh much."

"Venture?" Rorie was beginning to feel like an echo.

"My horse."
Rorie's gaze shifted to the stallion, who had lowered his head to sample the tall hillside grass. Now that she had a chance to study him, she realized what an extraordinarily large animal he was. Rorie hadn't been on the back of a horse since she was a child. Somehow, the experience of riding a pony in a slow circle with a bunch of other six-year-olds didn't lend her much confidence now.

"You…you want me to ride double with you?" She was wearing a summer dress and mounting a horse might prove…interesting. She eyed the stallion, wondering how she could manage to climb into the saddle and still maintain her dignity.

"You wearing a dress and all could make that difficult." The boy rubbed the side of his jaw, frowning doubtfully.

"I could wait here until someone else comes along," she offered.

He used his index finger to set his snap-brim hat further back on his head."You might do that," he drawled, "but it could be another day or so—if you're lucky." "Oh, dear!"

"I suppose I could head back to the house and grab the pickup," he suggested.

It sounded like a stroke of genius to Rorie. "Would you? Listen, I'd be more than happy to pay you for your time."

He gave her an odd look."Why would you want to do that? I'm only doing the neighborly thing."

Rorie smiled at him. She'd lived in San Francisco most of her life. She loved everything about the City by the Bay, but she couldn't have named the couple in the apartment next door had her life depended on it. People in the city kept to themselves.

"By the way," he said, wiping his hands with the bright blue handkerchief,"the name's Skip. Skip Franklin."

Rorie eagerly shook his hand,overwhelmingly grateful that he'd happened along when he did. "Rorie Campbell."

"Pleased to meet you, ma'am."

"Me too, Skip."

The teenager grinned."Now you stay right here and I'll be back before you know it." He paused, apparently considering something else."You'll be all right by yourself, won't you?"

"Oh,sure,don't worry about me."She braced her feet wide apart and held up her hands in the classic karate position. "I can take care of myself. I've had three selfdefence lessons."

Skip chuckled, ambled towardVenture and swung up into the saddle. Within minutes he'd disappeared over the ridge.

Rorie watched him until he was out of sight, then walked over to the grassy hillside and sat down, arranging her dress carefully around her knees.The cow she'd been conversing with earlier glanced in her direction and Rorie felt obliged to explain."He's gone for help," she called out."Said it was the neighborly thing to do."

The animal mooed loudly.

Rorie smiled."I thought so, too."

An hour passed, and it seemed the longest of Rorie's life.With the sun out in full force now, she felt as if she was wilting more by the minute. Just when she began to suspect that Skip Franklin had been a figment of her overwrought imagination, she heard a loud chugging sound. She leaped to her feet and,shading her eyes with her hand, looked down the road.It was Skip,sitting on a huge piece of farm equipment, heading straight toward her.

Rorie gulped.Her gallant rescuer had come to get her on a tractor!

Skip removed his hat and waved it.Even from this distance, she could see his grin.

Rorie feebly returned the gesture, but her smile felt brittle. Of the two modes of transportation, she would have preferred the stallion. Good grief, there was only one seat on the tractor.Where exactly did Skip plan for her to sit? On the engine?

Once he'd reached the car, he parked the tractor directly in front of it."Clay said we should tow the car to our place instead of leaving it on the road.You don't mind, do you?"

"Whatever he thinks is best."

"He'll be along any minute," Skip explained, jumping down from his perch. He used a hook and chain to connect the sports car to the tractor."Clay had a couple of things he needed to do first."

Rorie nodded, grateful her options weren't so limited after all.

A few minutes later, she heard the sound of another vehicle. This time it was a late-model truck in critical need of a paint job. Rust showed through on the left front fender, which had been badly dented.

"That's Clay now," Skip announced, nodding toward the winding road.

Rorie busied herself brushing bits of grass from the skirt of her dress.When she'd finished, she looked up to see a tall muscular man sliding from the driver's side of the pickup. He was dressed in jeans and a denim shirt, and his hat was pulled low over his forehead, shading his eyes. Rorie's breath caught in her throat as she noticed his grace of movement—a thoroughly masculine grace. Something about Clay Franklin grabbed her imagination. He embodied everything she'd ever linked with the idea of an outdoorsman, a man's man. She could imagine him taming a wilderness or forging an empire. In his clearly defined features she sensed a strength that reminded her of the land itself.The spellbinding quality of his steel-gray eyes drew her own and held them for a long moment. His nose had a slight curve, as though it had been broken once. He smiled, and a tingling sensation Rorie couldn't explain skittered down her spine.

His eyes still looked straight into hers and his hands rested on his lean hips."Looks as if you've got yourself into a predicament here."His voice was low,husky—and slightly amused.

His words seemed to wrap themselves around Rorie's throat, choking off any intelligent reply. Her lips parted, but to her embarrassment nothing came out.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 29 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 29 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2008

    great

    this book was really sweet and cute and adorable lol. yeah it was predictable but arnt all romance books? anywayz i loved this book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2012

    Duncan

    We arent on enough at the same time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2012

    Alex

    Hi

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2012

    Super sweet

    This book was super sweet and truly amazing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2012

    Still a feel good read in 2012

    Starts out like so many romances, but has some interesting twists and turns for the loveable characters Macomber creates so well. The pairing of the two stories is great since the characters in the first one are integral to the second.

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  • Posted July 17, 2011

    Wonderful!

    I haven't found a Debbie Macomber book I haven't enjoyed. This one was an easy, light read with just enough "small town" interference to keep you going. Just what I needed to help me forget some of the pain that's happening in my real life! I love her books and recommend them to anyone wanting to "dream" a little! :-)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2008

    Wonderful!

    These books were positively wonderful! A bit predictable at times...but very sweet and romantic. I look forward to reading more from Macomber...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2007

    Very predictable

    Not believable. Both stories were predictable. Depicts small towns as just gossip factories & used gossip as basis of the stories. Made myself finish it to see if it got any better...it didn't. No more of Debbie Macomber for me when there are writers out there like Judith McNaught and Jodi Picoult. MPASSKEY

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2001

    Nice but frustrating

    The story is a nice one, but there are so many spelling errors it quickly becomes a frustrating read. Not a book I will be able to keep for my shelf.

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    Posted May 29, 2011

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