Sunday, July 19, 2015

I reckoned you were kidding

Hiya folks and welcome to a Sassy Sunday Social between myself and my good friend Ms. Maddie Taylor. Today we'll be talking about one of her best books yet. An exceptionally fun, spicy and sexy western called The Trail Master's Bride. 

Mel: I’ve been burning to ask you about your villain, Avery Hill. He’s certainly one of those characters readers like myself love to hate. Where did you find your inspiration for him?

Maddie: I’m not really sure. Her husband Elliott as a bad guy was easy, but he dies early on the trip and I needed another villain to torment poor Mina. He just sort of evolved, and I’d like to say more, but I don’t want to give away all of my surprises and plot twists, so I’ll have to say. I hope the readers are surprised. Mel, guessed it though! Darn you, you know me too well.

Mel: In all of your books I’ve read, I find that most of your heroines, at least at times are quite spirited and feisty. Are you a similar reflection?

Maddie: LOL. We should ask my husband. I’ve thought numerous times in our many, many years together that my name actually was “smart-ass.”

Yippity Yellow: Maddie, if you were a tree, what kind would you be? 

Mel: Really, Yellow? A tree? 

Maddie: It's okay, Mel. I'll answer. 
Asked Barbara of Kathryn and I’ll steal her answer by saying, I prefer to be an oak rather than an elm, to avoid Dutch elm disease.  If you don’t get the reference, here’s the link to the real interview.

Well, huh! I always thought of you more as a Beech tree myself. 

Mel: Enough of your distractions, Yellow. Let's take a peek at this thrilling new western Maddie brought with her. What kind of teaser do you have for us, Maddie. 

Maddie: Glad you asked, Mel, here's the gorgeous cover, compliments of Korey Mae Johnson from Stormy Night Publications along with a sassy snippet.
Clicking cover will take you to Amazon

 The Blurb: Being cast out of her childhood home by her horrid stepmother and forced into a marriage by her uncaring father were bad enough, but it is only when twenty-year-old city girl Mina Hobart begins the journey west on the Oregon Trail with her detestable new husband that she begins to truly understand life’s cruelty. She hates every minute of each hot, dusty day, and her husband’s constant insults certainly don’t make matters any better.

Mina’s life takes another abrupt turn when tragedy strikes and she is left a widow. The west is no place for a young, newly single woman, and the job of keeping Mina safe—and keeping her in line—falls to Weston Carr, the rugged trail master. Weston quickly proves more than ready to tame the feisty redhead’s careless ways and sassy tongue, even if that means taking her over his knee for a good, hard, bare-bottom spanking.

Unfortunately, even as Mina does her best to learn to cook over a camp fire, make coffee properly, and do the laundry in a creek, jealousy and gossip among the other wives quickly build into significant strife in the wagon train. To quell the gathering storm, Weston is forced to take matters into his own hands and make Mina his bride, whether she likes it or not.

Despite Weston’s rough ways and firm-handed discipline, Mina soon finds pleasure in his arms far beyond anything she has experienced before. But when a series of mishaps befalls the wagon train—incidents in which Mina is the prime suspect—the new couple’s growing bond is badly strained. Can Mina prove she is not at fault before things come to a head, and if she does, will Weston be able to protect her from whichever of their travelling companions is up to no good?

Mel: Horrid Stepmother, detestable husband, dusty trails and A rugged trail master? Sounds utterly intriguing. How about a snippet Maddie? 

 Maddie: But of course, Mel. 

Wes inadvertently hit a sore spot with Mina when he criticized her really awful cooking.  It hit too close for home to her and she walked away from him, again. This is behavior he is determined to stop for her safety.

Stung by yet another culinary failure, with Weston comparing her coffee to sludge as Elliot had, Mina bristled. “I warned you.”

He didn’t respond, too busy guzzling water from his canteen. Once he had stopped wheezing and choking, he grabbed the towel she’d been using for a hot pad and pulled the skillet out of the fire. He flipped the cake over, expecting it to fall on the plate he held. He waited, shaking it a bit to get it to come out, though nothing happened. Taking up a wooden spoon, he banged on the back of the skillet. Still, nothing. He ended up scooping it out with the spoon, the overcooked, dry cornbread crumbling and falling apart on top while the thick black crust adhered to the bottom of the pan.

“Jo-fire, you did warn me, but darlin’, I reckoned you were kidding.” He chuckled as he looked at her in amazement. “My kid sister was cooking up a storm over a campfire by the time she was ten.”
Humiliated and hurt, she pushed to her feet. “Well, it’s a sorry shame she isn’t here to do it now, then isn’t it.”

“I was teasing, Mina. Sit back down.”

“No, I’m going for a walk.”

“No,” he echoed back, reaching up and grabbing her hand, his tone firm, “you’re not.”

“Yes, I am.” She twisted her arm and broke free of his hold.

Through narrowed eyes, he looked up at her and said in a stern tone, “It’s nearly dark and I don’t want you wandering off. I’ll clean the skillet and show you how to fry up the fish. It won’t take long at all.”

He wasn’t yelling or calling her names as Elliott had, but the sting of her late husband’s abuse was too fresh and this a very near reminder.
“I’ve suddenly lost my appetite, for both the food and the company,” she announced as she turned and stomped away.

“Mina.” The low tone of his voice was a warning, but she ignored it. “Come back here, now.”

Hurriedly, she rushed past the circle of wagons and headed toward a small copse of trees by the river, deciding it was best to cool off both her body and her temper before going back to camp.
When she was shy of her goal by a few feet, a large hand caught her arm and spun her around.

Mel: Goodness she's a fiery little lass isn't she? If this story was made into a movie who would you want to play the sassy Mina Hobart? 

Maddie: Easy, Isla Fisher. 
She looks like the image I have of Mina in my mind.  Don’t you think she could throw some sass, or some dung?  LOL

 Dung? And you guys thought the question about the tree was bad? 

Mel: Maddie, please share your favorite line from this story for Yellow. 

Maddie: “Did you just throw dung at me?” He asked the obvious, completely flabbergasted that she would throw anything, let alone excrement at him.

Thorough exasperated with Wes and what her life had become, Mina goes a little off the rails and later regrets it.  During, well, that’s a different story.

Mel: *Laughing* I loved that scene. Almost spit out my coffee all over my kindle. 
One last question before you have to rush off to pen your next great tale. Going back to when you first became published, would you say things have gotten easier or harder along the way?

Maddie: Harder. My first few books, I knew nothing about the business. I wrote and submitted. I had nothing to lose so if they sold, awesome.  Now I know about editing, worry about grammar, have discovered the importance of social media, blogging and promoting.  And then there is the whole business about rankings and revenues and to take an advance or not. Phew!  I’m harking back to much simpler times, but I don’t regret any of the things I’ve learned since then.

Mel: It's always a pleasure having you visit, Maddie. I know your a busy, busy woman so we'll wrap this up for now. The Trail Master's Bride is great book and most certainly bound to hit #1 in Westerns. 

Maddie: It's actually at #2 right now on Amazon ☺. 

Thanks for sharing a bit of your Sunday with us folks. You can find your own personal copy of this heated tale on AMAZON BARNS AND NOBLE ALL ROMANCE and KOBO 

And if you interested you can find more of Maddie on Facebook  Goodreads  Twitter  and Maddie's Blog


  1. Thanks for having me today, Melody. That cartoon could be us gabbing over the newest hot erotica release. But my cup would be filled with hot chocolate. BTW, was that title a reference to my southern heritage? Bless your heart. LOL

  2. It's always a pleasure to host you, Maddie. The title? Well, that was the hot-n-sexy Trail Master, Westen Carr of course. ;-)

  3. I loved the 'throwing dung' excerpt! And you just know what's coming next... :D Right, I'm off to find out about the oak, elm, beech tree thing. I like the oak, though. It's a good tree to pick ;) Hope you smash the charts Maddie !!

    1. Thanks, Christina. That scene was one of the best and most comical. I laughed till I cried while reading it.